The Best MBA Program Takes Honors…Again

The Best MBA Program Takes Honors…Again
What school has the best online MBA program? U.S. News and World Report reveals the news.

One school has frequently come in at the top of all other MBA programs. University of Pennsylvania's Wharton school continues to be the top for its MBA program, creating a gold status for the 2012 ranking by While the Wharton School is the most prestigious, it is also one of the most expensive MBA programs worldwide. The program is available at Wharton's home campus in Philadelphia for $167,160 and the school's West Cost campus in San Francisco for $173,940. This makes the program a little difficult to fund unless you are guaranteed a job after graduation or you have an amazing bankroll to fund your education.

There are various reasons for why Wharton has kept its lead against other business schools. The business program reports the lowest acceptance rate of any top EMBA program, accepting only four of every ten applicants. While half of the top 20 EMBA programs don't even require candidates to take the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT). This means that Wharton also requires a high school on the GMAT. Its EMBA students actually boast the highest GMAT scores of any school, 700 out of a maximum score of 800. Wharton's students earn an estimated $186,000 per year at their jobs, while four out of ten already hold an advanced degree before entering the EMBA program.

The schools that follow Wharton are Chicago Booth at number two, Northwestern Kellogg at number three, Columbia Business School at number four and New York University Stern at number five.

There were little changes among these rankings from the top 10 rated programs. The Thunderbird School of Managements EMBA program rose six places to finish 12th on the list of top rated programs in the nation, while University of Maryland's EMBA program had a seven-place gain so that it placed 18th out of all schools. These were the biggest changes in the pack of business schools rated best in the country.

Poets&Quants rates the overall reputation of these programs by combining the four latest ratings on EMBA programs from BusinessWeek, the Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times and U.S. News and World Report. Each ranking is blended with the other to create the lost of the top schools. The new rankings also take into account the different quality of programs, from surveys that require student satisfaction to increases in income that come from earning the degree.

Many of these programs do also have higher costs. However, studies have consistently shown that EMBA graduates tend to be more than satisfied with their post-education success. The study by GMAC showed that these graduates are paying back their education in about four years from the time that they finish school, and that they have the most success getting a job once they graduate.