The first colors of fall are here and the application period is reaching its peak. All of you applicants,like me,out there are busy writing essays, reporting scores and stalking recommendors to finish up their work, right ?
But before you start all these you need to remember, I hope you all did, the basic things needed to apply:
1 - GMAT - of course we all know about this
2 - TOEFL - needed mostly for non-English-native folks. But hold on, this doesn't mean you WILL HAVE TO take TOEFL. Most of the schools,if not all of them, have already realised that the majority of the international applicants come from colleges using English as the language of instruction. So they have been waiving off TOEFL.
When you browse the requirement info for the school applications, you might come across " TOEFL needed ", but have a little patience and read through carefully.Most schools do talk about waiver situations.
3 - Transcripts (the most important part of the pre-apps process).Well if you are like me and totally forgot about the transcripts, then don't worry my friends. Talk to the schools or browse their websites. Most schools ask only the scanned copies of marksheets of UG course as a part of the applications. Only after you are admitted would they ask you to submit the official transcripts(the college notarised copies of marksheets - generally sealed in an envelope). Everything said and done,its always better to have your transcripts in hand before September ends. Start asking your colleges for transcripts at least a month or two before you need them, you never know how long they might take.
4 - Recos - Experience speaks for itself. It's best to talk to your recommendors no later than August (since most R1 deadlines are in the first week of Oct.). I suggest that you have a open hearted talk with them so that they can see your passion and your interest for the MBA and understand how important it is for you to go to B-School. That would motivate them to act fast enough and will ensure on-time reco completion. Share your essays with them and remind them,in case of a very long-ago employer,of the stories that you think might help them evaluate you.
5 - Essays - Well , get ready to spend a loooot of time introspecting. If you can't think of any great winner stories, try to remember failure stories and project them as your life lessons ... I don't want to give much advice on this - after all I too am a novice here(sparing my two year apps to a B-School prog 3 yrs back ) and everybody has their own essay strategy. The important thing is to write your own essays and not let anyone edit them so much that the stories stop sounding like yours.
On the lighter side , watched this movie 'Acceptance' - it's about the whole app process for UG schools , but we B-School applicants can relate to it a lil'.
O.K! Enough gyan for an afternoon, now I've got to get back to my essays :)