Darden MBA Application Is Now Live (Class of 2016)

By Vincent Ho-Tin-Noe (last updated: December 17, 2013)

The University of Virginia Darden School of Business just released its application for the 2013 / 2014 season. Application deadlines for the Darden MBA program are the following:

  • Round 1: October 15, 2013
  • Round 2: January 7, 2014 (expect that week to be very busy, as several top schools have second round application deadlines due on January 6 or January 7)
  • Round 3: March 27, 2014

As for many other schools this year, the application only requires a single essay. Darden’s essay question seems to be pretty straight forward to tackle, even in just 500 words. Try to stick to that word count as much as possible. Although there is often a 5-10% tolerance above the official limit, are you sure you want to test the adcom’s patience?

“Share your thought process as you encountered a challenging work situation or complex problem. What did you learn about yourself?”

When answering that essay question, just make sure to demonstrate self-awareness and an ability to reflect upon and learn from past mistakes or difficulties. Also do not forget to actually answer the question, which requires you to share your thought process… Too many MBA applicants write essays that do not actually answer the question that was asked. Every word in the question matters. Keep this in mind.

Earlier this week Sara Neher, dean of admissions at Darden, offered a few words of advice to applicants*. In her video she emphasized the importance of submitting a solid resume (a document many applicants often spend too little time on), and to request letters of recommendations as early as possible. Follow her advice. Reaching out to recommenders and ensuring timely submission of their letters of recommendation is going to be an excruciating process. Start early. We mean it.

Here are the LOR questions for the 2013 / 2014 MBA application at the University of Virginia – absolutely no surprise here…:

  • Please comment on the context of your interaction with the applicant. How long have you known the applicant and in what connection? If applicable, briefly describe the applicant’s role in your organization.
  • Please describe the most important piece of constructive feedback you have given the applicant. Please detail the circumstances and the applicant’s response.
  • How does the applicant’s performance compare to other well-qualified individuals in similar roles?

Should you have any questions about the MBA admissions process, or should you need help with your application, just leave us a comment or send us an email to request a free consultation. And if you want to assess your odds of success at Darden or other top Business Schools, including Harvard Business School, Stanford, Booth, or INSEAD, try our free algorithm today!

* Watch the full video here:

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