Enrolling in a master’s in business administration program provides a great foundation for doctoral study or for profitable managerial roles in various industries. As of May 2018, management occupations boast a median annual salary of $104,240 and a higher-than-average projected job growth rate of 7%, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data.

The list of top business schools and MBA programs ranked below shifts yearly as the business education landscape changes. This 2022 rankings page highlights the top MBA programs in the U.S. and offers guidance in choosing an MBA that fits your lifestyle and career goals.


1. Harvard University – Cambridge, MA

Consistently ranked among the most prestigious higher education institutions in the U.S., Harvard also offers one of the best MBA programs in the country.

This two-year, full-time MBA implements a case method system, which allows enrollees to confront problems in class and then apply what they learn to field experiences. Learners use the case method system in courses like leadership and corporate accountability, the entrepreneurial manager, and technology and operations management. They also participate in an immersive, semester-long seminar to consult for a global company.

Harvard only considers applicants with previous work experience. Prospective students must also have GRE or GMAT scores and participate in an interview for admission.

2. Yale University – New Haven, CT

Located in New Haven, Connecticut, Yale’s School of Management offers several business degrees, including one of the best MBA programs in the country. The full-time degree follows an integrated curriculum, with students taking required core courses during their first year and electives during their second year.

Foundational courses cover topics like management, accounting, and statistics. Students also take organizational perspectives courses before moving on to the second year. Learners can optionally use electives to pursue a management science concentration.

All students complete a global studies requirement before graduation, choosing from a 10-day international experience, global social entrepreneurship courses, or an exchange program at universities like the London School of Economics and Political Science.

3. University of Pennsylvania – Philadelphia, PA

The MBA program at Philadelphia-based Penn offers 18 concentrations in areas including business economics and public policy, multinational management, and organizational effectiveness. Students may also create their own concentration.

The 19-credit curriculum consists of nine core credits and 10 electives. Enrollees can choose to study abroad, take global modular courses, or participate in a global immersion program. The university also features an MBA career management team to aid learners in finding employment. Historically, 100% of students receive job offers, with the majority of graduates working in financial services, technology, and consulting.

Penn does not require work experience, but each incoming student must possess an average of five years in a professional environment. Applicants must also submit GRE or GMAT scores.

4. Columbia University – New York, NY

At Columbia, the MBA program features a 60-credit curriculum comprising 18 core and 42 elective credits. Students can complete the degree in four terms, or just less than two years.

The first term covers core topics like leadership, ethics, finance, and marketing. MBA candidates can tailor the rest of the degree to their professional goals. Although the program does not offer formal concentrations, degree-seekers can choose courses that follow career-focused paths.

This program features a cluster system, which groups 65-70 incoming learners who take the same core courses. These clusters further break down into learning teams of five enrollees. Applicants must submit GRE or GMAT scores. While Columbia does not require work experience, most incoming students possess 3-8 years of professional experience.

5. Cornell University – Ithaca, NY

Cornell’s SC Johnson College of Business offers a two-year, full-time MBA on campus in Ithaca, New York. The degree features 12 focus areas, such as emerging markets, private equity and venture capital, and consulting and strategy.

After completing core courses during their first term, students jump into immersion learning experiences that combine theoretical classes with practical work. Learners can choose from several options for these experiences, including investment research or a sustainable global enterprise.

Each enrollee dedicates the summer between their first and second years to an internship. During their final year, many MBA candidates choose to study in New York City for intensive courses in fintech or digital management.

Prospective students who already possess considerable experience and want to enter their careers more quickly may also consider the school’s accelerated one-year MBA option.

6. Stanford University – Stanford, CA

Stanford’s MBA degree takes two years to complete and consists of core courses in leadership and management, a global experience requirement, and electives.

The first-year curriculum covers several foundational topics, like managerial skills, organizational behavior, and strategic leadership. During their second year, students take more advanced classes and electives. They may also choose to take two-week compressed courses or classes outside of the MBA curriculum.

The global experience may consist of a four-week global management immersion, 10-day seminars, or global study trips to countries like the UK and Greece. Each learner can also opt to pursue a dual degree by adding a juris doctor, master of education, or master of public policy to their MBA.

7. Duke University – Durham, NC

Located in Durham, North Carolina, Duke offers a daytime MBA program in a fast-paced format. After students complete a month of immersion and orientation requirements in July and August, they enroll in six-week courses. The full program takes 22 months to complete.

Learners start with general management courses during their first year before pursuing concentration courses. Duke offers 16 concentrations in areas including energy finance, social entrepreneurship, and decision sciences. MBA students can also supplement their degrees with optional certificates in finance and health sector management.

Duke encourages students to learn from one another, creating 4-5-person teams for group projects during the first semester. Enrollees can complete experiential learning opportunities, such as consulting or serving on a board. They can alternatively opt to complete a global study program.

8. Northwestern University – Evanston, IL

Based just north of Chicago in Evanston, Illinois, Northwestern features a few different MBA programs, including a full-time, two year MBA. The degree prepares graduates to find employment in the business and technology fields, with 98% of alumni receiving job offers within three months of graduation.

The program allows students to choose from seven concentrations, including economics, strategy, and managing operations. They can also opt to follow a pathway that prepares learners for emerging fields, like data analytics, venture capital and private equity, and social impact.

MBA candidates can optionally enroll full time at an international university as exchange students or participate in shorter business immersion experiences. Prospective students do not need work experience to apply. They should, however, submit GRE or GMAT scores.

9. Brown University – Providence, RI

At Brown, students can enroll in a 15-month executive MBA program designed for mid-career professionals. Degree-seekers enroll in five face-to-face learning periods that span 1-2 weeks and take place on Brown’s main campus in Providence and in Madrid and Cape Town. In between those periods, learners complete coursework online.

Students enter the program with a professional background, so Brown offers specialized courses, rather than a foundational curriculum. Classes include managing communities of work, the rise of China, and society and culture in the age of globalization.

The experience in Cape Town, South Africa, allows enrollees to apply business knowledge and skills to real-world situations. At the end of the program, students take part in a key reflection project. This culminating academic experience allows each student to solve a business problem in an area of interest.

10. University of Chicago – Chicago, IL

UChicago’s Booth School of Business offers a full-time MBA program that students can complete in 21 months. The degree follows a flexible curriculum, allowing learners to choose from 13 concentrations in areas such as business analytics, econometrics and statistics, and international business.

Students may also take lab courses, like a global social impact practice or a healthcare analytics lab. These courses give students practical learning experience working in teams to complete project-based experiential opportunities.

Students can take advantage of several MBA career resources through UChicago. The university offers career coaching, career development training, and workshops to help learners craft their resumes and cover letters. About 98.4% of alumni received job offers within three months of graduation.

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