Yale SOM MBA: Complete Guide to Admissions

The Yale School of Management (SOM) is an elite school at one of the United States’ oldest universities. Is Yale good for MBA studies? In some ways, the reputation of Yale’s business school precedes itself; it is without doubt a top ranked MBA.  Is it a good fit for you personally? Below, we’ll take a closer look at Yale’s MBA program, including information on the curriculum, application process, and the average Yale School of Management GMAT score.

Yale SOM MBA Program: GMAT Scores, Acceptance Rate, and GPA

When it comes to the class stats for students accepted at Yale, the academic numbers are a great place to start! First, GPA: what GPA do you need for the Yale MBA? Students admitted to Yale SOM’s class of 2022 have a median GMAT score of 3.65.  The middle 80% of admitted students’ GPAs range from 3.31-3.92. Next, let’s talk test scores. Successful applicants have a median GMAT score of 720, with the middle 80% of accepted students scoring between a 680 and 760.  The median GRE score is 165 for Verbal and 164 for Quant, with a middle 80% range of 158-170 for both sections. Yale SOM applies these numbers to arrive at an acceptance rate of 29.7%.

The scores of GRE applicants deserve some additional attention because Yale is on the cutting edge of a growing trend: the acceptance of GRE as an alternative to the GMAT. In 2019, 24% of the incoming Yale SOM class submitted GRE scores. That, in and of itself, is already a high number compared to many other top MBA programs. But then, in 2020, the number of accepted GRE test takers jumped up to 35% for the class of 2022. That’s a nearly 50% increase in students admitted with GRE as opposed to GMAT scores!  If you prefer the GRE to the GMAT, Yale may be an especially good choice for you. (And if you want to take the GRE, Magoosh can help!)

Yale School of Management sign

Special Tips for a Top Yale MBA GMAT Score

But then, this is the Magoosh GMAT blog, so I’d be remiss if I didn’t share some GMAT thoughts with you as well. If you’re determined to take the exam and earn a GMAT score that is competitive at Yale, you can begin the process by following these four simple steps:

  1. Start by taking one of our GMAT Diagnostic Exams.
  2. Decide how much time you need to study—3 months is usually ideal.
  3. Pick a location, choose a date, and register for your exam on MBA.com.
  4. Start studying with Magoosh!

Now, let’s go beyond admissions stats and get a good overview of the whole class profile for the Yale Master’s Degree in Business Administration program:

Yale MBA Class Profile

Total enrollment350
Median GRE score164 (Q)
164 (V)
Median GMAT score720
Median GPA3.65
Acceptance rate29.7%
First generation university students10%
U.S. Students of Color32%
Underrepresented Minorities11%
International citizens40%
Average work experience4.5 years

(Sources: Yale School of Management, U.S. News and World Report)

That table provides a good snapshot. But if you want to know more, Yale has you covered. Check out the official Yale SOM MBA class profile page for more info on demographics for accepted students, as well as the academic and professional backgrounds of the newest cohort.

Yale MBA Rankings

Since Yale began offering the MBA in 1999, the school has quickly become one of the most prestigious in the world. The Yale School of Management is regularly ranked in the top 15 programs of the United States, and often cracks the top 10. Currently, Forbes places the Yale MBA program at number 11 nationwide, while U.S. News and World Report puts it at an impressive number 9.

How to Get in to the Yale School of Management: Application Process

The Yale School of Management accepts applications in three rounds throughout the year. The round 1 deadline is in September, round 2 in January, and round 3 in April.

SOM applicants will need to fulfill the following requirements:

  • Complete the online application form, including one essay
  • Provide university transcripts (SOM admission requires a four-year bachelor’s degree or its international equivalent)
  • Submit GMAT or GRE scores
  • Submit two professional recommendations (one of which should ideally come from a recent supervisor/manager)
  • Record and submit live answers to three video questions
    • You’ll have between 60 and 90 seconds to give each video response.
    • The videos are another way for admissions to learn more about all of the applicants, and also to test English proficiency, which is why Yale does NOT ask applicants for IELTS or TOEFL scores.
  • Pay a sliding-scale application fee of $125 to $225. The fee may be waived for candidates who meet one of the following criteria:
    • Current/former U.S. military member
    • Current Yale graduate student, or current undergraduate student applying to the Silver Scholars program
    • Management Leadership for Tomorrow MBA Prep Fellows
    • Forté MBA Launchers or Rising Star participants
    • Peace Corps volunteers
    • MBA Prep Fellows from Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT)
    • College seniors and alumni wo participate in QuestBridge
    • Current staff or alumni of Teach for America, Teach for China, Teach for India, or any other Teach for All partner program
  • Schedule an in-person interview if selected to do so.

This set of application requirements can feel intimidating at first. However, Yale does offer a lot of support, as well as additional information that really demystifies the admissions process. To learn more, see Yale’s Admissions pageApplication Guide, and Application FAQ.

Yale SOM MBA Curriculum

How difficult is the Yale MBA coursework?  Let’s look at the curriculum. Yale’s “integrated curriculum” prepares students for multi-faceted roles within an organization by focusing on how areas like marketing, strategy, accounting, and finance all interact one with another.

In each semester, first-year students can expect to study not only individual B-school disciplines, but also the intersections and overlap among them. For example, first-year studies might interweave the basics of economics with the different impacts these economic principles have on different stakeholders within an organization or system.

In their second year, Yale students take elective courses to develop specific expertise in a field of their choosing. Students can learn the nuances of negotiation or advanced management, to give just two examples. Furthermore, students are welcome to take courses from Yale departments outside the SOM.

All Yale SOM students must also fulfill a global studies requirement, which involves international study and/or travel.

For more info, see the Yale School of Management’s own official Integrated Curriculum web page.

What is the Yale MBA program famous for?

From orientation through graduation, students enjoy a number of unusual features of the Yale MBA program.

Dual Degrees and Integration Between Yale MBA and the Rest of Yale University

One feature that helps Yale’s school of management stand out is its dual degrees. As you’ll see on the Yale SOM dual degree web page, Yale MBA candidates have many opportunities to pair their MBA with another discipline and double-major.

The generous double-major pairings that can go with the Yale MBA are part of the Yale initiative to integrate the SOM curriculum with the university as a whole. Because of this, Yale MBA students can take elective classes from many other departments at the university. For more information, see Yale SOM’s “Connection to the Host University” page.

Community Engagement

In addition, Yale’s full-time MBA program is exceptional when it comes to supporting its students and graduates in community engagement and public service careers.  One way the Yale School of Management does this is through its student loan forgiveness program. This program is specifically for graduates who go on to work in the public sector or in nonprofit fields (NGOs, sustainability, community support, etc…).  Similarly, the Yale School of Management hosts the Broad Center, a facility that helps students to prepare for leadership in public education, with an emphasis on underserved communities.

The “Raw” Case: A Different Approach to Case Studies

Like most graduate schools of business, the Yale School of Management uses case studies. Unlike most graduate schools of business, Yale’s MBA students present and organize their findings in what the Yale SOM refers to as “raw” cases. A raw case presents its information in a group of web pages that readers can access in any order they like. The idea is to make academic findings as accessible and easy to navigate as other kinds of popular, public-facing web content.

For more information on how the Yale SOM came up with the raw case approach, and the benefits of raw casework, see this Yale SOM website.

An Organizational Core Curriculum for the Yale MBA

In its core courses, the Yale MBA program gives special attention to organizational perspectives– a look at how companies function from the top down and the bottom up, as well as an examination of the place an organization has in its community and in society at large. Yale’s curriculum embraces complexity and recognizes that a business’ structure and component parts are about so much more than just the CEO! For details on this, you can read Yale MBA’s description of its year one core curriculum.

Employment Outcomes

Last but certainly not least, let’s look at what a Yale MBA can do for your career. After all, career advancement is why you’re interested in an MBA in the first place, isn’t it?

Job Offer and Acceptance Rate

Here are a few quick numbers to get you started: According to the Yale School of Management’s own very detailed employment report, 92.4% of the Yale MBA graduates who are seeking jobs receive a job offer within three months of graduation. Most of the graduates who are offered jobs accept them; 91.4% of job seeking Yale SOM alumni accept an offer within three months of graduation.

Average Starting Pay

“Yeah, yeah,” you might be saying. “I’ve got a good chance of getting a job with a Yale MBA. But what about pay?” Don’t worry, I didn’t forget that– and neither did Yale! In the Yale SOM’s overview of their detailed employment report, you can see that there are two median salaries: one for graduates who accept jobs in the U.S., and another for graduates who accept jobs overseas.

In America, the median salary for a new Yale SOM graduate is $145k. Each region in the U.S. has its own median though, and the range for those medians is $136k (South) to $152k (Midwest).

When Yale MBA graduates go abroad, they earn a bit less. Here, the median– calculated between job placements in Europe and Asia is $110,699. And the two regional medians Europe gives are $106,610 for Asia, and $112,134 for Europe.

The fields you might work vary even more than do the regions. Still, two fields take up the lion’s share of job placements for Yale MBA holders: consulting (36.9%) and finance (23.3%).

For more details, check out the above-linked in-depth employment report and employment report overview. Ultimately, these numbers just might be the most important factors in your final decision. After all, an MBA is all about return on investment!

How much does a Yale MBA cost?

Let’s have a look at the other important component of return on investment: the up-front cost! The “sticker price” for a Yale MBA is high. The Cost Information page for the Yale School of Management currently lists tuition and fees at $76,770. When additional costs of living and study are factored in, the final cost is calculated at $104,752.

Fortunately, there are ways to reduce those costs if you choose to pursue a Yale MBA. For info on how to cut costs and to apply for scholarships and other support, see the Yale SOM’s Funding Resources and Affording Your MBA pages.

Still not convinced Yale is your best option? Or do you perhaps want to treat Yale as just one possible option? In that case head on over to the Magoosh Top 25 MBA list. That list is a great starting point for exploring admissions and school info for many other excellent B-schools!

Ready to get an awesome GMAT score? Start here.

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  • David Recine

    David is a Test Prep Expert for Magoosh TOEFL and IELTS. Additionally, he's helped students with TOEIC, PET, FCE, BULATS, Eiken, SAT, ACT, GRE, and GMAT. David has a BS and MA from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and an MA from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. Early in his career, he worked for Disney Consumer Relations, later moving on to become a business banker at Wells Fargo. Once David discovered his passion for education, he started teaching K-12 ESL in South Korea. He soon branched out into adult learning, teaching undergraduate and MBA-level communication and writing classes at American universities. During this time, David also taught business communication to employees at Hyundai, Cargill, and Nestle, and trained English teachers in America, Italy, and Peru. His work at Magoosh has been cited in many scholarly articles, his Master's Thesis is featured on the Reading with Pictures website, and he's presented at the WITESOL (link to PDF) and NAFSA conferences. Come join David and the Magoosh team on Youtube, Facebook, and Instagram, or connect with him via LinkedIn!

  • Thomas J. Miller

    Few people are as familiar with the ins and outs of the GMAT's sections as is Tom Miller. Since 1995, when the exam was pencil and paper only, Tom has designed, taught, and edited programs for several international test prep companies and MBA programs to address each change in the exam’s content and format. His students have gone on to graduate from many of the world’s top MBA programs.   Tom has authored an acclaimed GMAT grammar crash course, “Verbal Boot Camp”, and has a long track record of helping the “math-phobic” successfully get their scores up to the level required to succeed in business school. He has also helped many students get the superior scores required for scholarships and admission to the world’s top MBA programs.   Tom’s business school experience goes beyond the particulars of the GMAT. He has taught Economics and Statistics as an Executive in Residence and Adjunct Professor at the Butler University MBA program and taught Business Business Law at Stenden University in Qatar, where he was the faculty Senior Lecturer.   Tom has won numerous awards for his publications on leadership, core values, and peak performance in “Proceedings” of the US Naval Institute and is the first enlisted man to win the Navy League of the United States’ Alfred Thayer Mahan Award for Literary Achievement.   Tom holds degrees in English, German, and Art History from Indiana University, and a law degree from the Cleveland Marshall College of law. You can connect with him on LinkedIn for further information.

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