ISB is one of the top Bschools in India and now features amongst top 15 Bschools in the world according to the latest FT rankings.
No doubt, the increase in the number of seats at ISB (560 for the class entering in 2009) and the new ISB Mohali campus are great news for all aspirants as their chances of getting admitted go up.
ISB’s selection process, though in a nutshell is similar to all US Bschools but is actually different if we look closely.
Firstly the pool of applicants to ISB is skewed with 95% Indians. Also a large number of applicants are still from IT and ITES though this trend has been changing.
ISB application doesn’t have direct essays like “Tell us about your career goals” or “Why MBA” or “Why ISB” barring one essay which asks you “Why should ISB take you”. ISB has been asking for essays like Case study on team dynamics, to ethical dilemmas like Zumba dam to GSB president’s note to writing a cover letter for a dream job post ISB. None of these essays give you a chance to sell yourself directly. But eventually ISB is like any other good Bschool. It also wants to judge how different you are and they want to judge that through your thought process, through the way you deal with situations, through how to project yourself and so on.
ISB’s application and essay are an important decision factor simply because of the fact that ISB gets more than 6000 applications per year and it has to finally admit around 500. So a large number of applicants are chucked at the essays stage itself.
ISB’s interview is also very different in the sense that unlike US schools, ISB has a dedicated admission committee which travels all across India and interviews applicants.
Another thing which only a few applicants know and can crack is getting an alumnus reference. ISB allows each alum to refer one applicants and although no one knows but I think ISB takes this seriously because they have a process defined for this and a mail follows once your referred applicant is selected or rejected.
So, basically to crack ISB get to know ISB system well, talk to alumni and if you are planning to take services from Admission consultant do make sure that they have good success rate at ISB.