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The questions YOU should ask at an MBA interview

Katie Schenk - December 01, 2014

19- In the Process 11 The Questions YOU Should Ask at an MBA Interview

Remember the elation you felt when you received an interview request?  Surely that was followed with a combination of anticipation and dread.  This is the make-or-break moment for many applicants.  The last thing you want to do is put your foot in your mouth or stammer through incoherent responses.

But, the questions you ask at the end of the interview are just as important as your responses to the questions asked of you.  They demonstrate your interest and motivation as much (if not more) than any answer in the interview.

And, not asking questions subtlety tells your interviewers that you’re not all that interested in their programme.  Although you need to be prepared for anything in your interview, you shouldn’t plan to go off the cuff when it comes to your questions.  You want to prepare them carefully.

What NOT to ask during your MBA admissions interview

To begin with, there are plenty of questions that you need to avoid during your interview.  These range from personal to obscure and asking any of these questions could produce undesired results.

  • General Questions: If you can find the answer to your question online or in a brochure, you’re way off the mark with your question.  Admission teams want to see that you’ve dug deeper.
  • Personal Questions: You can ask your interviewer how she would define the school and some of her opinions, but you can’t ask anything that crosses a personal line.  You also can’t ask what your chances are.  If you do, your prospects are likely to plummet.
  • Unrelated Questions: If you’re planning to pursue a finance specialisation and everything in your application supports that, don’t ask questions regarding classes or professors outside your focus.
The questions you SHOULD be asking

Remember that your interview is not really a test.  The school is looking for reasons to accept you.

At this point, the admissions team wants to see that you are as vivacious and motivated as suspected and that you’re still keen on their programme.  The first part of your interview is about proving that you’re genuine and that your papers accurately represent the person you are.  Your questions are meant to show your interviewer that you want to be a part of their programme.  Here’s what you should ask to demonstrate just that.

  • School Assets: Feel free to ask what the interviewer thinks are the school’s greatest assets or benefits.  But, make sure you ask what the drawbacks are too – and what future students can do to help transform challenges into programme strengths.
  • Ask for Advice: You can ask for advice on making the most of your time at their school if you’re accepted.  This is always a good question because it gives you both something to think about.
  • Campus Life: When you enquire about specific buildings, facilities or activities it shows that not only are you picturing yourself on campus, but also being actively engaged in student life.
  • Research and Faculty: Asking about specific initiatives in your field and how you can become involved shows that you’re really excited about their educational content and faculty.
Finally, don’t forget to ask about the best person to speak to in the future if you have specific questions if you are accepted into the programme.  Remember too that you only have a limited amount of time, so make sure you keep your questions succinct and pertinent.

And now?  Off to the mirror for some practice.

Having trouble figuring out how you'll finance your MBA once you've been accepted? Learn more about Prodigy’s international MBA loan programmes here, or read more about Prodigy's investment community here.

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