Application Trends Survey Report 2019

October 2019


Candidate considers their options for business schoolGMAC’s annual Application Trends Survey gathers intelligence on the current market for graduate management education applicants. The 2019 survey collected data on the applications received by 1,145 responding graduate business school programs for the 2019-2020 academic year.

The 2019 report offers timely insights on application volume trends by program type and world region; applicant pool composition by gender, citizenship, and work experience; and expected changes in enrollment rates, acceptance rates, and program size.

In the Research Library, you can access our Research Snapshot infographic series for programs in the United States, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Canada. You can access the overall Research Snapshot on the Application Trends Survey main page. 

Quick Facts

  • Total applications declined slightly year-on-year. A weighted average of applications to programs that responded to both this year’s and last year’s surveys shows that total applications were down 3.1 percent year-on-year.
  • Programs continue to seat classes with highly qualified talent. The median number of applications per seat was 2.5 this year, about the same as last year (2.4). Overall, nearly 9 in 10 programs report that their applicant pools were equally (63%) or more (24%) qualified compared with last year.
  • Shifts in student mobility are boosting programs in Asia Pacific, Europe, and Canada, and hurting US programs. More Asia-Pacific candidates are opting to stay close to home, while the flow of international candidates to Europe and Canada continues to strengthen. Meanwhile, soft demand from abroad is fueling application declines at US programs.