The Rice MBA Full Time Program FAQs

How do I apply?
Apply online.

What must be submitted to complete a Rice MBA application?
  1. Completed online application.
  2. Three personal essays submitted online. (topics)
  3. Professional resume submitted online.
  4. Official test scores submitted to the Jones School (GMAT, TOEFL or PTE Academic).
  5. One confidential evaluation submitted to our office provided that this one evaluation is from your current, direct supervisor. If this one evaluation is not from your current supervisor, you are required to submit twoconfidential evaluations.

  6. Official transcripts of all degree-granting institutions mailed to our office.
  7. $125 USD application fee paid online or by check mailed to our office (payable to Rice University).

Which of the admissions criteria are most important?
Applications are considered in their entirety. We seek students who possess strong academic and quantitative analytical aptitude, demonstrated management potential, and a diversity of experiences.

How much is the application fee?
$125 in U.S. dollars, payable by credit card, check or money order to Rice University. Applications not accompanied by this fee will not be reviewed.

Do you offer application fee waivers?
MBA/MD applicants are not required to submit the application fee. The application fee is also waived for United States military personnel (active duty or veteran), Teach for America corps members and alumni, and Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT) Fellows.
 
What are the application deadlines and decision dates?
All materials must be submitted by the deadline at midnight CST, in order for your application to be considered in that round. Please note that the application is on EST. If your supplemental materials are received after the deadline, your application will be considered in the subsequent round. Interviews will be scheduled on an invitation only basis, following the initial review of your application.


Admission Round   Application Deadline   Decision Date
1   October 27, 2014   December 5, 2014
2   January 5, 2015   February 27, 2015
3   February 23, 2015   April 3, 2015
4   April 6, 2015   May 8, 2015

**Please note that the application for fall 2015 will be available starting August 18, 2014.

Who should write my confidential recommendations?
The two required recommendations should be written by individuals who have known you professionally. One of these should be from a direct supervisor, and should provide specific, detailed insights into your administrative and/or academic performance. Use your best judgment in selecting evaluators; if you feel it is necessary, you may also include a note in your application explaining your choice. If you have taken a leadership role in some other activity, a reference from that organization would also be appropriate. Please do not use friends or family members. If you work in a family business, please ask a client or previous supervisor from outside the family business. Recommendations should be current and address your potential as an MBA candidate.

Must confidential recommendations be written on the form included in the application?

The online evaluation form is a requirement and must be submitted. You may submit an accompanying letter of recommendation as well.

 

Is an evaluation interview part of the application process?
Once an application is completed, the admissions committee may request an evaluative interview. Interviews are by invitation only after all materials have been received and initially reviewed. Candidates from outside of Houston may conduct their interviews via telephone. However, visiting the campus for a face-to-face interview will also allow for class visits and a tour of facilities.

How many essays are required, and what are the topics?

All applicants must submit 2 required essays. Re-applicants must submit a 3rd required essay. All applicants may submit an optional video supplement via LikeLive if they choose and an optional additional essay. 

 

The essay topics are:

  1. Required - Describe your short-term and long-term career goals, and how the MBA will help you achieve those goals. Include in your discussion: Why is now the appropriate time to pursue an MBA, and why are you interested in obtaining a Rice MBA? (Maximum 750 words)
  2. Required - Choose one of the following three essays (Maximum 500 words):
    • What is the best mistake you have ever made?  Include its impact on you and how it altered your view of the world.
    • Describe a defining moment or event that changed your life.
    • What historical event would you like to have witnessed or participated in, and why?
     
  3. Optional video supplement - You have the opportunity to upload an optional 90 second video supplement for your application through LikeLive and answer the following prompt: Visualize yourself joining the Rice MBA Class of 2017. Share something unique about yourself that you want your fellow Rice MBA classmates to know.  Follow the link in the application to access the video submission website. 
  4. Optional - You may use this essay to discuss anything else that you would like the Admissions Committee to know about you, or to provide information or clarification on one or more aspects of your application. (Maximum 750 words)
  5. Required for re-applicants ONLY - Think about the time that has elapsed since you last applied to the Jones School. What actions have you taken to improve your candidacy? (Maximum 750 words)
                         
Can I transfer into the Jones School from another educational or MBA program?
No. Course work from other programs is not transferable.

Can I work while I attend the Jones School's MBA program?
No. Classes are held during the day, and the rigorous nature of the program does not make it feasible to work elsewhere simultaneously. However, the Jones School does offer an MBA for Professionals and an MBA for Executives, which are designed to enable working professionals to pursue a traditional MBA degree.

May admitted students postpone entering the program?
Postponements are rarely granted. Each request is reviewed on an individual basis.

I can't obtain my official undergraduate transcripts. What should I do?
Unofficial (scanned) copies of transcripts are accepted as uploads in the application and can be used during the application review process.  However, this convenience is intended to benefit international applicants who may experience difficulty requesting and delivering transcripts in time to meet the deadline.  The admissions committee reserves the right to require an official transcript during a candidate's review process if there are any discrepancies or legibility issues with the copies and could delay an admission decision or move an application to the following round.  Official transcripts are required in order to enroll in the Rice MBA program.  It is highly recommended that applicants submit official transcripts for the initial review process if possible.  Candidates who attended a United States higher education institution should have no issues requesting the delivery of official transcripts in a timely manner.

Transcripts from my undergraduate institution are not in English or the GPA format. What should I do?
If your original official transcripts are not in English, you must submit an English translation of your transcript in addition to the originals. Transcript translation can either be completed by the degree granting university or by a credential evaluating service.

To be considered for admission, your degree must be equivalent to a U.S. four-year bachelor's degree. Some, but not all, three-year degrees granted outside the U.S. are equivalent, so if you received a three-year degree we require that the degree be evaluated by a recognized credential evaluation service, such as those listed below. Your evaluation should include your degree equivalency as well as a course-by-course conversion of marks/grades. You can request that the evaluator return the translated version to you, or have it delivered directly to Rice. The evaluation should be in a sealed envelope with an official stamp across the flap when it is received by the Admissions Office. For all other non-U.S. degrees, please note that the Admissions Committee may request a credential evaluation if there is any question about the equivalency of your degree, and this could delay your admissions decision. If you have any specific questions about this policy, please contact the Admissions Office.

If you have completed an equivalent four-year degree but your GPA is not in the 4.0 GPA format, you must convert it to the 4.0 scale in order to enter your GPA accurately into the online application. To obtain an English credential translation (required) or evaluation (recommended), please contact one of the following companies:
Educational Credential Evaluators

SpanTran Educational Services


 
For a small fee, you can use an online tool to convert your G.P.A. to a 4.0 scale. You must fax, scan, or mail the printed GPA calculation that lists the grades and courses as you entered them.

Can my undergraduate school send you my transcripts directly?
Yes, please send transcripts to: 

Rice MBA Admissions
6100 Main Street
MS-531
Houston, TX 77005

However, if you have received it in a sealed envelope with an official stamp, seal or signature over the flap or opening, you can send along with any other supplemental application material.

Must I submit a transcript from EVERY institution I've ever attended, including those where I participated in summer programs and semesters abroad? You must submit transcripts from your degree-granting institutions and those whose grades were transferred to your degree-granting institution - unless those grades appear on your final transcript. It is not necessary to submit transcripts from summer course work or study abroad if it was not required for your degree, if it was less than 9 credit hours, or if completion of these courses is reflected on your main transcript.

Do you require the GMAT?
Yes. We do not offer a GMAT waiver. Without Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) scores, your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed. We require the GRE score, in addition to the GMAT score, if you are applying to the joint MBA/Master of Engineering program. We require only the MCAT if you are applying to the joint MBA/MD program. MBA/MD applicants who wish to be considered for scholarship must submit a GMAT score. Register for GMAT. 

 

What are the minimum acceptable GPA and GMAT scores? Because the Jones School invites applications from students worldwide, many of whom have attended universities with very different grading systems, we have no minimum GPA or GMAT requirements. We evaluate applications in their entirety, searching for strengths in all areas. 

If I take the GMAT more than once, are my scores averaged?
No. We consider only your highest score.

How must GMAT scores be submitted? What is the GMAT test code?
In your application, you must report the scores from your preferred GMAT test date. For verification purposes, in both cases, you must also request that the testing service send your official score report directly to Rice MBA. The GMAT test code is 3WS-WD-92.

What if my official GMAT scores arrive after the deadline?
We do not need to receive your official GMAT score by the application deadline; however, please do indicate on your application the month and year your test is scheduled. Your application will not be considered for admission until your official GMAT score is received.

How do I apply to take the GMAT?

Visit www.mba.com.

I've taken the GMAT more than once. Can I submit components from various testing dates?
No. Component GMAT scores, including verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing assessment tests, must be reported from the same date. While the score report contains all of your scores, the board will focus on the highest score.

Do you require an English proficiency exam?
International applicants who did not earn an undergraduate degree from an institution where the primary language of instruction was English, must submit a valid score report from one of the following:
  1. Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
  2. Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE)
  3. International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
All test scores are valid for two years. Please allow at least four weeks for your test results to reach us. The English language test requirement is automatically waived for international applicants with master’s degrees or a PhD from colleges or universities where English was the primary language of instruction.

How do I apply to take the TOEFL, PTE or IELTS?
Additional information about each may test be obtained from the following:

TOEFL: http://www.TOEFL.org
PTE: www.pearsonpte.com  
IELTS: www.ielts.org  

Do you ever waive the requirement for an English proficiency exam?
Waivers will be granted on a case by case basis and you must have a GMAT test score if you wish to be considered. For more information, please call us at 888-844-4773 or Email ricemba@rice.edu.

If I take the TOEFL or PTE more than once, are my scores averaged?
No. We consider only your highest score.

How much professional experience, on average, do Jones School applicants bring to the program?
Full-time students have, on average, five years of professional work experience.

How important is my work experience to your decision?
Every element of your application is given equal consideration. With work experience, our Admissions Committee is interested less in the quantity of work you have performed than in what you may have learned from the sum of your experiences and how they prepared you for the challenges of participating in the Rice MBA program.

Must I have an undergraduate degree to enter the Jones School?
Yes, you must have a four-year undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university if you received your education in the United States. If you are an international applicant, your undergraduate degree must be the equivalent of a U.S. four-year degree. If you have completed a three-year Bachelor of Commerce (BComm) degree, we also require a Master of Commerce (MComm) degree.

What undergraduate major is required?
No particular undergraduate major is required for the MBA.

Are undergraduate business courses a prerequisite?
No.
Is an interview required?
Yes, but not all applicants will receive an invitation to interview. Once an application is completed, the Admissions Committee may request an evaluative interview. Interviews are granted by invitation only after all materials have been received and initially reviewed. If the Admissions Committee is requesting an interview, you will be contacted via e-mail. It is the responsibility of the applicant to confirm the appointment. Appointments which have not been confirmed will not be honored. You may contact us toll-free at 888-844-4773, at 713-348-4918, or at ricemba@rice.edu.

How do I arrange to observe a class?
You will need to make an appointment one week prior to your arrival. We do not hold classes on Friday or during the summer. To schedule a class visit, call or email the Admissions Office toll-free at 888-844-4773 or 713-348-4918, ricemba@rice.edu.

Can I meet the faculty?
You are welcome to observe classes; however, faculty are not able to meet individually with prospective applicants.
I was not admitted with the first deadline. Can I reapply for the next deadline? What about next year?
You may not reapply again this year; however, you may reapply for the following school year.

What are my chances for admission if I reapply?
The Rice MBA applicant pool becomes more competitive every year. If you reapply within two years, your previous application will also be reviewed. In the new application, we will look for evidence of increased management responsibility, personal growth, or improved academic performance through additional course work.

How do I complete the application form if I'm reapplying?
If you applied to the Jones School previously, we ask that you submit the complete application package again regardless of the previous decision. You will be required to use a new e-mail address to start a new application. You will no longer have access to your previous application. Properly completing the application requires new essays, new letters of recommendation, an updated resume, and the application fee ($125USD). If you have applied within the last two years, we will still have your transcripts on file, so you will not need to resend those items unless something has changed. In addition, you must complete a required fourth essay responding to the following prompt in 750 words or less: Think about the time that has elapsed since you last applied to the Jones School. What actions have you taken to improve your candidacy? (To clarify – re-applicants must submit 4 required essays, and may submit an optional 5th. Please see the Applications tab for the additional essay information.)

To reapply, do I need to have all of my test scores (including the GMAT and TOEFL or PTE Academic) sent to you again?You do not need to resend your test scores, unless your score has expired or if you have retaken the exam. GMAT scores are valid for 5 years from the test date; TOEFL and PTE Academic scores are valid for 2 years.
Full-Time MBA
Class of 2015
Class Profile


Number of Incoming Students 105
Average GMAT 676
Median GMAT 680
Average GPA 3.3
Average Years of Work Experience 5.1
% Women 37%
% Foreign Nationals 30%
Countries Represented 17
% U.S. Underrepresented Minorities 14%
Undergraduate Majors:  
       Business/Economics 44%
       Math/Science/Engineering 37%
       Liberal Arts/Other 20%
 





What other programs does the Jones Graduate School of Business offer?
The Jones School offers a PhD in Business, in addition to the MBA for Professionals, and the MBA for Executives. We also offer three joint programs, the MBA/ME, MBA/MS, and the MBA/MD. Additionally, Executive Education offers non-degree courses and certificates.

For K-12 educators, REEP (Rice Education Entrepreneurship Program) combines a business school education with an intensive entrepreneurship curriculum to provide exceptional leadership abilities and management principles.