Live Updates: Coronavirus Impact On Business Schools
What is the impact of coronavirus on business schools? We bring you the latest updates including campus closures, changes to MBA admission requirements, and more
GMAT & GRE Test Center Closures Extended
May 1 Roundup
GMAT & GRE Testing Suspensions Continue
As the coronavirus pandemic continues to force countries into lockdown, test centers remain closed through late May and June. Follow our latest live updates:
Fortunately, you can now take the GMAT and the GRE online as a temporary solution in most locations. However, the at-home test-taking experience has its peculiarities and many candidates will be looking forward to a return to the test center test when the COVID-19 lockdowns ease.
GMAT Online FAQs—New Questions Answered!
Your questions have been pouring in about the new GMAT Online Exam. We put them to GMAT product lead Vineet Chhabra. Find out the official GMAC response on the online whiteboard issue:
EMBA candidates can now take the Executive Assessment Online
At 90 minutes in duration, the EA is considerably shorter than the traditional GMAT. It covers verbal, integrated reasoning, and quantitative questions, and does not include the Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA).
If you are applying to an EMBA program in 2020, and do not want to defer your application, taking the new EA Online could be the solution.
MBAs to provide help for small businesses
Many small businesses are suffering from the economic impact of coronavirus, so now MBA students are looking to help.
On May 14th, the Small Business School Challenge will see teams of US-based MBA students provide hands-on consulting for small businesses around the theme of ‘emerging from the crisis with confidence’, potentially also winning cash prizes for their small business clients.
The 48-hour national virtual hackathon has been organized by MBA students at schools like UVA Darden and Berkeley Haas and is free for small businesses to sign up to. Berkeley Haas MBA David Corfield (pictured) is one of the organizers.
David is also one of the co-founders of LifeWork, the company staging the hackathon and which supports small businesses. LifeWork is developing a payment platform to help remote freelancers get paid faster.
Business school explains what it’s like to transition online
London Business School Professors Share Leadership Lessons
April 30 Roundup
LBS Professors Propose Good Leadership Habits
The world is changing, and leaders need to change too. A group of London Business School professors have put their heads together to propose what they believe should be the habits that leaders embrace in these uncertain times.
“Give gifts of unequal value,” suggests professor of finance Alex Edmans. “Life is not a finance textbook.” He praises businesses that are going above and beyond to deliver services and goods that will help those most in need.
Gillian Ku, professor of organizational behavior, suggests that leaders “embrace different perspectives.” People should invest this time in trying to understand how other people function and live—which in turn will feed cooperation and collaboration.
How b-school professors are learning to teach online
It's estimated that over a billion learners have had education disrupted by the pandemic. Business schools and professors from around the world have had to move teaching online. Dr Anna CohenMiller, from Nazarbayev University in Kazakhstan, shares four ways professors are mastering online teaching.
1. Managing expectations
While online learning has been a trend in higher education, most faculty members have not been trained in this practice. Teaching online for the first time may not be the best lessons they have ever delivered, but this is a learning opportunity for everyone.
2. Being flexible in assessment
It is important to decide out how to achieve learning outcomes via online teaching; professors will likely need to help students demonstrate their knowledge in new ways. For assessments, they can decide if they want or need to change examinations during this period of online learning. Perhaps there are some forms of assessment that could be removed altogether.
3. Choosing technology strategically
There are digital platforms offered by universities (Canvas, Moodle, Blackboard) and also other tools, such as Google docs or Whatsapp groups. Experimenting with different technology systems may take some time, but professors should find the ones that they feel most comfortable using.
4. Creating an inclusive, supportive environment
While some students may be technologically adept and comfortable with online tools, others may not be. Students may be anxious about their abilities in an online setting, concerned about having consistent access to the internet, or worried about demonstrating their learning online.
Saïd Business School offers insight into leadership during times of crisis
Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford broadcast their latest webinar, on Leading in Extraordinary Times. You can watch the panel, led by Saïd professor Tim Morris, here.
How One Business School Moved Entirely Online
For EGADE Business School, the transition to remote learning was completely seamless. Within 24 hours of the lockdown announcement, the entire school had moved online.
Find out how their different online offerings and teaching methods, as well as online networking opportunities, are keeping their students and alumni active and engaged.
Read the full article here.
Harvard MBA Secures STEM Designation
April 29 Roundup
Harvard MBA Gets STEM certified
US business schools are rushing to get STEM-designation for their full-time MBA programs to attract more international students. STEM-designation qualifies MBA graduates for 36 months of Optional Practical Training, allowing them to work in the US without an H-1B visa.
Now, according to one report, Harvard Business School has confirmed its request to create a track of the MBA Program designated as Management Science has been approved. To pursue the Management Science STEM track, HBS MBA students will take a series of first and second year courses in STEM-related topics.
The STEM MBA trend is largely in response to a drop in international applicants to US schools, a result of strict visa requirements and anti-immigration rhetoric by the Trump administration. It’s also linked to a significant STEM job shortage, with 2 million jobs expected to go unfilled by 2025.
How an MBA will get you jobs post-coronavirus
The disruption caused by coronavirus has seen economies suffer and companies reduce staff. To ensure you stand out in the post-coronavirus jobs market, an MBA can help. Read the full article
MBA employers recruit online
LBS online course helps you pursue a career in tech
Do you have an idea for an app or a web-based business, but no idea how to build it? A new online course, taught to students at London Business School, is helping people with non-tech backgrounds pursue careers in technology.
Sophia Matveeva (pictured below), who teaches the course, is a Chicago Booth MBA grad who started her own fashion tech company Enty with no background in technology. Despite this, she managed to create several tech products and lead a successful tech team. “As a result of what I've learned, I created a course on what non-technical founders need to know about tech,” she says.
The course covers the basis of how apps and websites are made, with the next course date set for May 11th.
Working from home won’t save the planet
A university study has found a mass move to working-from-home accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic might not be as beneficial to the planet as many hope.
The majority of studies on the subject analyzed by University of Sussex academics agree that working-from-home reduced commuter travel and energy use, by as much as 80% in some cases. But a small number of studies found that telecommuting increased energy use or had a negligible impact, since the energy savings were offset by increased travel for recreation or other purposes, together with additional energy use in the home.
Studies indicate it would be better for workers to continue working from home for all of the working week rather than splitting time between office and home once lockdown rules are relaxed. Similarly, companies will need to encourage the majority of staff to switch to home working and to downsize office space to ensure significant energy savings.
Deans make coronavirus predictions
UNC Kenan-Flagler Fast-Tracks College Students Into MBA
April 28 Roundup
UNC Kenan-Flagler To Fast Track College Grads Into Their MBA Places
Recent college graduates could have the opportunity to go straight into an MBA, thanks to UNC Kenan Flagler Business School.
The school has launched the NC Business Next program, which aims to boost career opportunities in the current economic crisis by offering spots to a small number of high performing college graduates, for an MBA usually reserved for those with three-to-five years of work experience. The program is open to graduates from UNC Chapel Hill, other UNC campuses, and North Carolina residents from other universities.
“Recognizing the difficult and uncertain career opportunities for new college graduates in North Carolina, we decided to launch an initiative that provides a route to career success for new college graduates in North Carolina,” explains UNC Kenan-Flagler dean Doug Shackelford.
The program is willing to offer a GMAT or GRE waiver to those unable to prepare for or take a GMAT in the expected time.
Find out the average GMAT scores at the world's best business schools
Our annual report of average GMAT scores at the world's top 20 business schools according to the Financial Times is out.
Stanford tops the list, with an average GMAT score of 734, with Wharton in second place on 732. There's a three way tie for third place, between Harvard Business School, Chicago Booth, and Kellogg School of Management.
Check out the full article here.
How online learning is equipping us with remote working skills
IE Business School professor Enrique Dans spoke to us about how MBAs moving online is actually a blessing in disguise. It’s the perfect opportunity, he says, to get to grips with technology and software that will come to define the workplace. Read the full article.
Professors from Asia School of Business give their reading recommendations
Check out our Self-Isolation Reading List here.
Coronavirus thought of the day—is the COVID-19 lockdown a bit like a social experiment?
In a matter of weeks, all of our human interactions have moved online, through platforms like Zoom and Slack. It’s a massive test, to see how well business and humans can cope with online technology; on the flipside, whether technology can adapt to suit our needs.
It’s a little bit like a social experiment, suggests London School of Economics professor Carsten Sorensen.
“We are all being forced to battle with digital platforms when they refuse to do what we want; perhaps you can’t figure out how to view all participants in a call or your video isn’t working. I have a doctorate in computer science and still spend time on IT support.”
But perhaps it might cause some revelations about the way we used to live.
“Perhaps a prolonged period of social distancing will lead to deeper reflections on how we live, on whether being crushed into a claustrophobic tube line is really worth it, on the importance of physical communities over virtual interaction, and on the importance of a balanced working life.”