Top MBA Colleges in the World

First things first. This isn’t an MBA ranking. It’s a top business school ranking for popularity.

There are many excellent GMAT MBA college rankings (for full-time MBA, executive MBA, part-time MBA, specialty MBA rankings) published by the leading MBA related publications like Financial Times, Businessweek, The Economist, Poets & Quants.

We weren’t interested in presenting old wine in a new bottle. Instead, we have tried to create new wine and present it in a familiar looking bottle (i.e. the rankings format).

The MBA Crystal Ball Business School Ranking is not about the biggest or the best business schools in the world (based on quality of teaching or diversity of the class profile). It’s also not about the highest post-MBA salaries, the average GMAT scores or for that matter anything related to the specific degrees (MBA, MPhil, MFE, PhD) they award.

Those questions have already been addressed by others. At MBA Crystal Ball we are interested in finding out the answer to another question – Which are the Most Popular Business Schools across the world.

GMAT MBA Business School Rankings

Methodology for the MBA Crystal Ball Bschool Rankings
For the scope of this GMAT college ranking, we restrict the definition of ‘Popularity’ to the interest shown by prospective students, employers, professors, other stakeholders in the online ‘properties’ of the bschool – primarily its website and its social media presence (limited for now to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn).

The bschool rankings methodology we follow is quite simple. Like in a democratic election, we’ve assumed that people have already voted for the most popular bschools schools. We’ve just tapped into the publicly available data to form a perception about the level of popular interest in these business schools.

Which means – no surveys, no questionnaires, no subjective or philosophical questions to answer and no sample size constraints. Instead of limiting ourselves to a few thousand participants, we are relying upon the collective wisdom and interest of hundreds of thousands of folks who have voted with their mouse clicks.

We consider aspects such as the overall website traffic and multiple parameters (followers, likes, interactions, online activity) that are relevant for the individual social media sites. We then use a little magic formula (consisting of weights, adjustments and penalties) to arrive at the overall bschool ranks. We have written many articles related to these schools. Click on the school names (first column) that have links, to learn more about each.

Bschool Rankings FAQ

1. How accurate & useful are these rankings?

Accuracy: Rankings, in general, are inherently flawed as they often consider aspects that can be measured. Subjective aspects are either ignored completely or forcibly converted into numbers. The same applies to our bschool ranking. There is no such thing as an accurate bschool ranking.

Usefulness: This is an equally subjective aspect. For the naysayers, this is largely a statistical exercise with no real world relevance. For those who like rankings (and data analysis in general), there are enough insights that can be derived from slicing & dicing the data that’s available. Though we have to admit that the insights would be more useful for bschools than for MBA aspirants. Check out some of them here – B-School Rankings Insights.

2. What do you mean by ‘adjustments’ and ‘penalties’ in the methodology?

All parameters aren’t equally important or relevant. As an example, the number of Facebook ‘Likes’ would have no meaning if there was zero interaction with the ‘Likers’. Another example, there are tactics such as mass following that are frequently adopted on Twitter to gain followers. Yet another one, related to websites. Most bschool sites are hosted within a bigger university domain. So it’s tough to segregate the traffic between the parent site and the sub-domain.

We’ve tried to consider several such situations and cross-dependencies while assigning weights and penalties.

3. Can you share your GMAT MBA college ranking formula and all the parameters?

This is the first time we’ve created this ranking and we realise there’s scope for improvement. Trying to chase a perfect formula (that doesn’t exist in the first place) will convert this into a pure mathematical exercise. Instead, we’d be more keen to hear whether the output of the process looks intuitive or if you see red flags that need an explanation.

We’ve shared some ideas in the previous question to give you a flavour of what we do. Over time when we’ve tried this out a few times, we might be more transparent about the specific parameters, weights and adjustments.