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MBAs Come in Different Shapes and Sizes

Generally speaking, there are two types of MBA programs available to working professionals:

The Fully Employed or Professional MBA program
The Executive MBA program

The Fully Employed MBA

The curriculum of the MBA program for the fully employed is usually taken from a university's full-time MBA program, and then rescheduled in an evening format (although some schools only offer MBA programs to working professionals). Students normally possess an average of 3-5 years of work experience since college.

Admission requirements are generally more traditional than Executive MBA admission criteria, and will usually require an acceptable score on either the Graduate Management Admissions Test or the Miller Analogies Test, an acceptable undergraduate G.P.A., and a review of past work experience. In some instances, an admissions formula is used to determine an applicants admissions status.

Executive MBA

Executive MBA programs are designed for those individuals with extensive work experience (7-10 years). They are usually shorter in length than the fully employed or professional MBA programs, and special attention is given towards topics such as strategic planning, international markets, and management (though other areas of concentration may be available).

These programs are usually shorter in length than the fully employed programs, and most are scheduled in a lock-step fashion. Lock-step signifies that participants move through the program together as a unit, allowing little flexibility in scheduling of courses.

It is very difficult to draw a comparison between admission requirements to Executive MBA programs. There is no standard formula on which to draw conclusions about an individual's chance for acceptance. Instead, applicants are reviewed on an individual basis.

Interviews are a critical part of the admissions process for Executive MBA programs. These interviews are used to determine a candidate's job responsibilities, and whether or not the candidate will fit with other members of the class. Class balance amongst participants is important in executive MBA programs.

On occasion, a student may be accepted without an undergraduate degree, based on exemplary marks in the other areas of consideration for admission.