Executive MBA Pros & Cons

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Thinking about applying to a top executive MBA program? Below you’ll find EMBA pros and cons to help you decide if, when, and why an EMBA program is for you.


1. It’s easier to get in. You may need to have more work experience to be considered for an executive MBA program, but it’s actually easier to get into an EMBA program than an MBA program (for the most part). For example, in 2014, UCLA Anderson’s full time MBA program had an acceptance rate of 17.8%; its EMBA program accepted 56.4% of applicants.

2. There’s less focus on the GMAT. Many top EMBA programs don’t require applicants to take the GMAT. And those that do, frequently will still consider candidates even if their GMAT scores are not on par with those at top MBA programs.

3. You can keep working. Almost all executive MBA programs are part-time, which means you can keep your job and still squeeze in those weekend or evening classes.

4. You won’t need to relocate. Obviously this depends on the program, but many EMBA programs have classes only on the weekends, which means (if you can afford it), you can live at home during the week and commute to class for the weekends and not uproot and relocate your family.  

5. Your peers are more experienced. EMBA students are older and wiser, with more work experience under their belts. If you are in your thirties (or older) and have 10+ years of work experience, then you would probably benefit more from being surrounded by peers with similar timelines than by being in a class of 25-year-olds who are newer to the workforce.


1. Commuting isn’t fun. Being able to stay put, keep your job, and not uproot your family are certainly perks of pursuing an EMBA, but commuting for two years, whether during the evenings or on the weekends, can be exhausting, as well as expensive.

2. You will be BUSY. Working full-time and studying part-time won’t leave much time for anything else. Throw a commute in the mix and you’ll really be swamped. And that’s before we even get to family obligations. Say goodbye to the next season of Game of Thrones.

3. There aren’t as many executive programs. MBA programs are a dime a dozen. EMBA programs are not as abundant. And you need to find one that will support your goals, location, and schedule.

4. Recruiters aren’t always fans. It may not sound fair because you DO have more work experience, but often recruiters view the EMBA degree as an “MBA-lite.” They prefer younger job prospects who have completed the more-rigorous, more-full-time, and more-all-consuming business degree.

Still not sure if an EMBA is the right move for you? Download our free admissions guide, Ace the EMBA: Expert Advice for Rising Executives, for not-to-be-missed advice on deciding which type of business program is best for YOU.

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Related Resources:

• School-Specific EMBA Application Essay Tips
• Tips for EMBA Reapplicants
• A Lot About Yale SOM’s EMBA Program, a podcast episode

The post Executive MBA Pros & Cons appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.

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