Choosing a B-School: Is Two Years Too Long?

by Vault Education Editors | June 21, 2011

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This week, in the ninth and final post in our Selecting Your Target MBA Program series, we discuss the advantages and disadvantages of accelerated MBA programs and stress the importance of choosing wisely for your particular situation.

Whether one is talking about Harvard, Stanford, Wharton, MIT, Tuck, Duke or any other top U.S. business school, the typical MBA program offered is actually fairly standardized—two years of organized study and an internship during the summer in between. However, if you scratch beneath the surface, you will find accelerated programs in the form of Columbia's J-Term and Kellogg's one-year (known as 1Y) MBA. Students in these programs start at a later date than the rest of the school's incoming class in a given year and do not complete a summer internship; instead, they study through the summer, then join the second-year class when those students return in the fall, and all the students ultimately graduate together, at the same time. Or, alternatively, some European business schools offer programs that are shorter than the typical U.S. program, such as INSEAD (10-12 months), IMD (10 months) and London Business School (15-21 months). So, why don't more candidates take advantage of these comparatively brief programs? After all, these students spend less time out of the work force, pay less for living expenses while in school and get back to earning sooner. Well, we can think of a variety of reasons...READ MORE

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