Everything You Need to Know About the MBA Application Process
Important Dates and Deadlines
We look forward to receiving your application! See below for deadlines and contact our team with any questions. We’re here to help you.
Class of 2024 Full-Time MBA Application Deadlines
Decision Round Application Deadline Rolling Decisions Released Round 1 October 15, 2021, 12 PM (noon) CT Starting December 10, 2021 Round 2 January 5, 2022, 12 PM (noon) CT
Starting March 4, 2022
Round 3* April 1, 2022, 12 PM (noon) CT Starting May 13, 2022 Final Deadline (U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents Only) May 1, 2022, 12 PM (noon) CT Rolling Basis
*To ensure adequate time for visa processing, Round 3 is the final deadline for international applicants.
Consortium Application Deadlines
Decision Round Application Deadline Rolling Decisions Released Round 1 October 15, 2021 Starting December 10, 2021 Round 2 January 5, 2022 Starting March 4, 2022
Class of 2024 Professional MBA Application Deadlines
The Rice Professional MBA program uses a rolling application process: you can submit your application at any time during the 2021-22 cycle. We can release decisions within two to three weeks on completed applications.
We encourage you to apply to our first priority deadline to gain the advantage. Compete with a smaller number of applicants for the greatest number of seats. Secure more time and support to prepare for the program (including a quantitative skills prep course and a custom workshop for enrolled students). Expand your connections by attending networking events months before the program begins.
Decision Round Application Deadline Decision Date Priority Deadline May 16, 2022, 12 PM (noon) CT Rolling Decisions on Space Available Basis
(Decisions within four
to six weeks after
application is complete)
Final Deadline June 27, 2022, 12:00 PM (noon) CT
Class of 2024 Executive MBA Application Deadlines
Decision Round Application Deadline Decision Date Priority Deadline May 16, 2022, 12 PM (noon) CT
(Decisions within four
to six weeks after
application is complete)
Final Deadline June 27, 2022, 12 PM (noon) CT
Classes of 2021 & 2022 Online MBA@Rice Application Deadlines
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis for each of our four intake terms (October, January, April, or July). We invite you to learn more about the application requirements and deadlines for our online MBA.
The application deadline is June 30, 2022 (12 PM, noon, CT). Please follow the requirements for the Full-Time MBA.
Use our admissions process guide to build your best application for the Full-Time, Professional and Executive MBA programs.
The MBA Deferred Enrollment program follows the process for the Full-Time MBA program. (No GMAT waivers for this program and the application fee is waived until December 1, 2021.)
For our Online MBA program, MBA@Rice, we have slightly different requirements that you can read about here.
When You Apply:
To submit your application, you must upload unofficial (scanned) copies of transcripts for each degree that you have earned. Your transcripts must include the name of the degree awarded and the degree conferral date. We will also require transcripts from each institution at which you completed fifteen (15) or more credits unless those courses and grades* are reflected on the final transcript from your degree-granting institution.
*Grades for transfer credit courses must appear on transcript in alpha (A, B, C, D, etc.) or numeric format.
For the MBA Deferred Enrollment application, please submit the transcripts of the courses that you have completed and provide a list of courses that you are currently enrolled in. You will also need to submit your final transcript once you complete your undergraduate studies.
When You Enroll:
If you are admitted and decide to enroll with us, you will be required to send us official (physical or electronic) transcripts from each bachelor or graduate degree(s) earned from U.S. degree-granting institution(s). We will also require official transcripts from each transfer credit institution that meets the criteria outlined above in the "When You Apply" section.
To ensure credential standardization, we require that all transcripts from non-U.S. degree-granting institutions be reviewed by a third-party transcript evaluation service. You are welcome to use any of the below three companies for this process.
The evaluation will also fulfill the requirement of an official transcript for that institution.
Note: If the Admissions Committee notices issues with the accuracy or legibility of your unofficial transcripts, we also reserve the right to request that you send us an official transcript before releasing your final decision.
We require a standardized test for admission to each of our MBA programs. Please note that the date of your first test attempt must fall before the deadline date of the round to which you are applying. You may reference the chart below for the types of tests we accept for each MBA program:
Test Option Full-Time MBA MBA for Professionals Executive MBA MBA Deferred Enrollment GMAT ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ GRE ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ Executive Assessment (EA) ✔ ✔ ✔
Full-Time MBA and Professional MBA candidates may be eligible for a standardized test waiver. For more information, please complete the Standardized Test Waiver Request Form. Please note that you need to start a Full-Time or Professional MBA application before you can apply for a waiver.
Executive MBA applicants may be eligible for a standardized test waiver. For more information, please complete a Resume Pre-Assessment.
When You Apply:
As you work on your application, you will be required to upload the unofficial, “test-taker” copy of your test scores. This unofficial copy is usually delivered to you in a PDF or paper format following your test.
Applicants to the MD/MBA dual degree program may submit their MCAT scores to complete their MBA applications and to be considered for merit-based scholarships.
*For Full-Time MBA applications, we will accept re-takes of standardized tests until April 15, 2022.
When You Enroll:
If you are admitted to the Rice MBA program and decide to enroll with us, we will require that you have your official scores sent to us using the codes below:
Test Option Full-Time MBA MBA for Professionals Executive MBA GMAT 3WS-WD-92 3WS-WD-68 3WS-WD-58 GRE 7502 Executive Assessment (EA) “Rice University Jones Graduate School of Business”
Application Tip: We encourage you to take your standardized tests early in the admissions process. If you are unhappy with your test score, we also encourage you to consider retaking the test. We do not look upon retakes negatively, and we will consider only your highest score when reviewing your application for admission.
If you do decide to retake a test after you have submitted your application, please let us know and we will be happy to consider your application with the updated score (although your application may be pushed to the next application round).
In order to assess your work experience, we require you to submit a professional resume. Spend some time before submitting your application to make sure that your resume is up-to-date and appropriate to use in an application to a business school.
We also want to learn about who you are outside of your job duties, so our application includes an entire section dedicated to your extracurricular activities. Use this space to list the groups you are a member of, the activities you lead, and the impact you have on your community. You will also have a chance to talk about any awards or special recognition that you have received.
For those applying to the MBA Deferred Enrollment program, please focus your resume on your extracurricular activities, including, but not limited to, internships, student club involvement, and volunteer work.
Application Tip: In general, your professional resume should be no longer than one page (as opposed to an academic curriculum vitae, or CV). Rather than serve as an exhaustive list of all of your job duties, your resume should highlight your employment history, education, and extracurricular involvement.
Letters of recommendation are a required component of the Rice MBA application. One (1) is required if: Your current, direct supervisor will be submitting a letter of recommendation on your behalf. Two (2) are required if: Your current, direct supervisor will NOT be submitting a letter of recommendation on your behalf.
At least one recommendation needs to be from someone highlighting your professional abilities, but altogether applicants are allowed to provide up to two recommendations.
Rice MBA programs use the GMAC Common Letter of Recommendation, which allows recommenders to answer the same set of questions for multiple business school applications.
After entering your recommender’s contact information into your application, the application system will immediately send an electronic "Common Recommendation" form to that individual.
For those applying to the MBA Deferred Enrollment program, one of your recommendations can be from an academic source, but one must be from a supervisor from work or extracurricular activity.
Application Tip: In addition to the official recommendations, if you know a current Rice MBA student or alumni you may ask them to write you a Build the Class referral, which will qualify you for an application fee waiver.
For MBA Deferred Enrollment applicants, please follow the instructions for the Full-Time MBA essay requirements.
Full-Time MBA & Professional MBA Required Short Answer Responses (100-word limit, each):
Rice Business seeks to have a clear and direct understanding of your post-MBA goals.
Short Answer Response #1: "In 100 words or less, please share your short-term goals."
Short Answer Response #2: "In 100 words or less, please share your long-term goals."
Full-Time MBA & Professional MBA Required Creative Essay (choose one topic and response format):
Please choose to answer one of the following prompts:
Prompt #1: "What movie, song, or book has most influenced your life and the way you view the world? Why?"
Prompt #2: "While we know a picture is worth 1000 words, in 500 words or less tell us the story of a photo of your choosing that has significant value in your life experiences. Please feel free to share your photo!"
Prompt #3: "Houston is one of the most diverse cities in the United States and food is a large element of culture. If you had to design a 3-course menu to prepare for your future MBA Core Team, what would be on the menu that showcases more about who you are?"
Please choose only one method of communication that you would like to use for your response:
- Write an essay (500-word limit)
- Share a video (one to three-minute time limit)
Executive MBA Required Essay (750-word limit):
“As you evaluate where you are today, how have your educational, professional, and personal endeavors brought you to this point? In addition, please explain how the Rice EMBA is part of your future plan.”
Optional Essay (750-word limit):
If you have any additional information for the admissions committee or if you wish to clarify any aspect of your application (including breaks in employment, your choice of recommendation providers, your past academic performance, etc.), you may submit an additional, optional essay.
Once your application has been submitted and the application fee of US$200.00 has been paid*, our Admissions Committee will begin reviewing your application.
*We are proud to offer application fee waivers to:
- United States military personnel (active duty or veteran)
- Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT) MBA Prep Fellows
- Forté Foundation MBALaunch members
- MD/MBA dual degree program applicants
- Rice University alumni
- Prospective students referred to us by alumni through the Build the Class program
- Prospective students who have met a recruiter at an MBA fair or event outside of Houston
To be eligible to apply to the Rice MBA program, we require applicants to hold a four-year U.S. bachelor's degree, or its international equivalent. We consider undergraduate, bachelor-level degrees that were earned in three years of study to be a valid equivalent.
When you Apply:
- Before submitting your application, you will be required to upload an unofficial (scanned) copy of your transcripts or mark sheets.
- If your transcripts are not written in English, you must also upload an additional copy that has been translated into English by a certified translator. Please note that these translations must bear an original ink signature and seal, and that the unofficial, untranslated copy must accompany the translated copy.
- If we notice issues with legibility or translation accuracy, the Admissions Committee may ask you to send us a full transcript/credential evaluation.
English Proficiency Test Scores
International applicants must submit an unofficial copy of an English proficiency test score.* All English proficiency test scores are valid for 2 years, and we will consider your highest score. We accept the following tests:
- Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
- International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
- Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE)
- Duolingo English Test
* If your most recent degree was taught primarily in English, you studied for at least one semester in an English-speaking country, or you worked for at least one year in an English-speaking country, the English proficiency test requirement will be waived.
When you Enroll:
If you are admitted and choose to enroll with us, you will be asked to have your transcript evaluated by a third-party evaluation company to verify grades, curriculum and that your undergraduate degree is indeed the equivalent to a U.S. bachelor's degree. You are welcome to use any of the below three companies for this process.
English Proficiency Test Scores
If you are admitted to the Rice MBA and decide to enroll with us, we will require you to have your official scores sent to us using the codes below:
- TOEFL Code: 7320
- IELTS: Scores are sent electronically
- PTE: Scores are mailed directly to our office by the testing service
- Duolingo: select Rice Business - Jones Graduate School
The Rice MBA programs have an extremely competitive pool of talented candidates, so while we may not have been able to offer you admission in a previous admissions year, we invite you to consider reapplying to the program in the future. Since prospective students cannot apply more than once during an admissions cycle, we suggest using the time between your decision and the opening of a future admissions cycle to self-assess your last application and think of ways that you could improve it.
To reapply, you will need to submit a new application. This will require new essays, new letters of recommendation, and another application fee of US$200.00.
If you decide to apply again, you will also need to complete an additional, required re-applicant essay:
“Think about the time that has elapsed since you last applied to Rice Business. What actions have you taken to improve your candidacy?” (500-word limit)
Unless your test scores have expired (five years for the GMAT and GRE, two years for English proficiency tests), you will not need to worry about re-sending your score reports to us; we will still have access to your scores and will be able to add them to your application. We will also still have your official transcripts on file if you chose to send your transcripts to us previously.
We review applications comprehensively, which means that not any piece of the application is viewed as more important than the others. Rather, we evaluate the quantitative (years of work, GMAT score, GPA, etc.) and qualitative (leadership, community involvement, career progression, etc.) elements of your application together to determine your overall fit with the program.
Throughout the application process, we will check to make sure that we have all of the information we need to properly review your application. If we require additional clarification regarding a piece of your application or notice that you are missing important material, we will reach out to you via email or telephone.
When the preliminary review of your application file is complete, the Admissions Committee may extend an invitation to participate in the additional assessment activities outlined below.
Rice Virtual Assessment
Rice Business utilizes a virtual platform as an additional assessment component. This is an opportunity for you to showcase your motivations for pursuing an MBA at Rice Business and alignment with our culture.
This is a conversation between you and a member of the Rice Business community. We hope that you will use this time to not only share your personal accomplishments but also to showcase your personality. Tell your story. At this time, all of our community assessments will be conducted via Zoom; however, we will be sure to share when in-person assessments are available again in the future.
Due to the number of applications received every year, we are not able to extend an invitation for additional assessment activities to every applicant. Please note, however, that if you do not receive an invitation for additional assessment activities before decisions are set to be released, this does not automatically mean we are no longer considering your candidacy.
The admissions interview is an opportunity for you to showcase your motivations for pursuing an MBA at Rice Business and alignment with our culture. At this time, all of our interviews will be conducted via Zoom; however, we will be sure to share when in-person interviews are available again in the future.
Due to the number of applications received every year, we are not able to extend an invitation to interview for every applicant. Please note, however, that if you do not receive an invitation to interview before decisions are set to be released, this does not automatically mean we are no longer considering your candidacy.
If you retake a test, add a new line on your resume, or have any other updates to your submitted application, please reach out to us and we will make sure that your application is updated accordingly.
While we do not give feedback on individual applications after an admissions decision has been made, we are more than happy to work with you any time during the application process to help you put forward your best application.
Please do not hesitate to email, call, or schedule an on-campus meeting with a member of the Rice MBA Recruiting and Admissions team. We look forward to getting to know you!
Admit It: Rice Business MBA Blog
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