Application Trends Survey

After 17 years, still the leading source on business school admissions trends!

2016 App Trends, Large Thumb Nail imageFindings of the GMAC 2016 Application Trends Survey show a competitive marketplace for b-school applicants this year, with candidate demand spread across a growing supply of MBA and master's programs. A total of 335 business schools around the globe submitted admissions data for the incoming 2016-2017 class for 872 graduate management programs, which is a record number of participants for this survey. 

According to the survey report, more programs report growing volumes vs. declining volumes in 2016 and more than half (52%) of all programs expect to increase their class size for 2016-2017. Globally, nearly half of all graduate business programs (49%) received more applications in 2016 compared with 2015; while 43 percent received fewer. Eight percent of programs report no change in volumes for 2016 compared with 2015. For the first time since 2012, less than half of full-time two-year MBA programs (43%) experienced year-on year application volume growth.

Click the link below to access the detailed summary report of the 2016 Application Trends Survey findings and to download the list of participating schools.

GMAC Research Report 2016 Application Trends Survey Report [September 2016]

Research Insights

Visit our Research Insights web hub for special reports on admission trends from the 2016 Applications Trends Survey that spotlight three regions: Africa, Canada, and India. [September 20, 2016]

Past Application Trends Survey Reports

20152014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011

Exclusive Benefits for Survey Participants

  • The Interactive Data Research Tool lets schools create a customizable view of survey data, allowing survey participants to explore year-on-year application volume trends, applicant pool composition by gender and citizenship, and other survey findings by program type and world region. 
  • Our robust Benchmark Tool allows participating schools create and download instant peer-to-peer comparison reports from aggregated survey data from a list of schools and programs that responded to the survey. Watch the benchmark demo! For additional answers to basic questions about how to use the benchmark reports, check our Application Trends Survey Benchmark Tool FAQ.

Companion Survey

GMAC also produces a shorter Preliminary Application Trends study each February for an early indication of market health. Schools that participate look to the preliminary survey not only for early data on applications to classes starting late summer but also for end-of-cycle results for programs starting in January. Results from this survey are distributed only to participants.