Executive MBA: Eligibility Criteria & Selection Process

Executive MBA is an MBA programme exclusively devised for working professionals. Many universities and institutes across the world offer EMBA to persons who have considerable work experience and who wish to advance their career. While the work experience is given the highest weightage for EMBA, there are some other factors to consider as well. In this article, you will learn about the broad eligibility criteria and selection process of Executive MBA programs.
Executive MBA: Eligibility Criteria
In recent years, there has been a rising demand for EMBA among the management aspirants. Most of the conditions for admission remain similar to a regular MBA. However, some b-schools, to differentiate between a regular MBA and an EMBA, have placed particular criterion such as minimum years of workexperience required. Given below are basic eligibility criteria for admission to EMBA:
  • Bachelor’s degree: Candidate should have done Bachelor’s degree from a recognized university and scored at least 50% marks. Some institutes may not place any minimum cut off marks for EMBA.
  • Age Limit: Some B-schools may place an age limit of minimum 25-27 years for an executive MBA program.
  • Work Experience: Work experience is the main criteria for admission to EMBA. In most cases, candidates need to have a full-time work experience of at least 5 years at executive or managerial level. The number of years stated for minimum work experience differs from institute to institute. While admission in ISB’s PGPMAX Programme requires you to have a minimum work experience of 10 years, many other institutes in India accept candidates with 3-5 years of experience. Most of the foreign universities offer EMBA to only senior executives with 10-15 years of work experience.
Given below is an illustration of the type and quality of experience required for EMBA:
  • Leadership: Your work experience is considered good if you have some years of leadership experience as well. Some job profiles enable you to play a leadership role while others may not. The quality of leadership experience is estimated by the value created or impact made by your decisions.
  • Professional Skills and Maturity: The measure of professional maturity is determined by your overall personal development gained as a result of your job tasks. This cannot be stated as your formal experience but is reflected in your essays/SOP. It revolves around your soft skills and informal leadership you provide to your subordinates or co-workers.
  • Entrepreneurship/ Family Business Experience: Just like work experience with a popular brand enhances your profile greatly your own business counts well depending upon its brand value. If this is not the case, the other factors stated above need to be strong enough. Additionally, your internship and part-time work experiences influence your selection to a small extent.
Though work experience is the main criteria for EMBA, B-schools have a standard selection procedure for admission to their Executive MBA programs. Most institutes follow the given admission process for EMBA.
Executive MBA: Selection Process
Generally, the selection process for Executive MBA starts with a test – be it an entrance test, a language test, an essay writing test or group discussion and a personal interview. Following is the description of each stage:
Entrance Test: Usually, B-schools shortlist the candidates based on their GMAT or GRE score. Some institutes in India also accept CAT, XAT, NMAT, BAT, EMAT, etc.or conduct their own entrance exam. The validity of these tests varies from 2-5 years, as per the criteria of the particular institute. A score of 700+ in GMAT is considered good for admission to Executive MBA.
Language Test: Since the majority of EMBA programs involve international exposure, institutes include tests like TOEFL, IELTS or PTE. If you desire to pursue an Executive MBA in a foreign university, you need to clear these tests with a good score. One of the best B-schools, Kellogg School of Management, place a minimum cut off of 100 in TOEFL or 7 in IELTS for non-US citizens. Top Institutes in India like ISB and IIMs often engage in exchange programmes and hence, require the candidate to pass the English proficiency tests.
Group Discussion & Essay Writing: Some of the institutes include group discussion or essay writing test in their screening process. The purpose of these tests is to evaluate the communication skills and general awareness of the candidate. The essay writing test lets the evaluators learn about the candidate, his/her ambitions, aspirations and experiences.  Foreign universities include the essay part in their application process. On similar lines, B-schools in India require an SOP (Statement of Purpose) besides the application.
Personal Interview: This is the last and most crucialround of the selection process. In this round, the interview panel tends to gauge the personality traits of the candidate. The interviewers probe the candidates on their career goals, future planning and their potential contribution to the EMBA program.
Letters of Recommendation/Sponsorship letter: Mostly, B-schools in India and abroad need atleast two letters of recommendation or reference from the candidate. These may be from the candidate’s previous or current employers. In case, the candidate is sponsored for EMBA by his/her organization, he/she needs to submit the sponsorship letter from the organization.
Lastly, do check the specific eligibility criteria and admission procedure of individual colleges before applying.

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