Mit Sloan Essay Word Limit Definition


MIT / Sloan Essay Topic Analysis 2017-2018

Following up on the release of MIT Sloan’s 2017-2018 application essay prompt, we thought we’d offer some suggestions about how Sloan MBA hopefuls might approach this year’s written materials.

The school has maintained their required cover letter—albeit with a bit more room compared to last year. The video essay is now mandatory and invites applicants to introduce themselves, as opposed to an open-ended optional video for additional information.

MIT / Sloan Essay Topic Analysis 2017-2018

Let’s take a closer look at this year’s MIT / Sloan essays:

Cover Letter

MIT Sloan seek students whose personal characteristics demonstrate that they will make the most of the incredible opportunities at MIT, both academic and non-academic. We are on a quest to find those whose presence will enhance the experience of other students. We seek thoughtful leaders with exceptional intellectual abilities and the drive and determination to put their stamp on the world. We welcome people who are independent, authentic, and fearlessly creative — true doers. We want people who can redefine solutions to conventional problems, and strive to preempt unconventional dilemmas with cutting-edge ideas. We demand integrity and respect passion. 

Taking the above into consideration, please submit a cover letter seeking a place in the MIT Sloan MBA Program. Your letter should conform to a standard business correspondence, include one or more examples that illustrate why you meet the desired criteria above, and be addressed to Mr. Rod Garcia, Senior Director of Admissions (300 words or fewer, excluding address and salutation).
Rod Garcia has long likened the MBA application process to the recruiting process; MBA aspirants, just like job applicants, need to demonstrate that they know how to market themselves.  This is why the school requires a cover letter as part of their application.

As you approach this assignment, keep in mind the many standard cover letter themes—your attributes and skills, why you are interested in joining the ‘company’ (MIT / Sloan), and what you feel you could contribute.  These certainly intersect with the ideas covered by other schools’ “career goals” essays, so much so that it may be tempting to simply tack a greeting onto the beginning of a career goals essay you’ve prepared for another program.  MIT’s request for these ideas in a cover letter format, however, actually makes it very easy to spot recycled material, so it’s important that you tailor your response to the school’s unique process.  It’s also worth noting that the Sloan admissions team has been open about their decision to avoid direct questions about ‘why MIT’ or ‘specific career goals’ – so while those themes may play a role in your cover letter, the focus should be largely on who you are and what you have accomplished, as opposed to a simple expression of your love of the program/plans for the future.  With such a limited length, all points must be concise, yet informative.

A potential outline for this essay might open with a couple detailed sentences about who you are and what you would bring to the school; then a short statement of your career goals with a summary of the ways in which your experience to date has prepared you to accomplish them; and finally a brief “why MIT” section explaining why Sloan is the best place for you in terms of what you need from an MBA and your fit with the school, concluding with a thank you.  To effectively convince the adcom that your background is uniquely suited to MIT Sloan, it will be important to conduct a fair amount of research on the program.  Taking the time to learn about MIT’s curriculum, special programs and extracurricular activities—whether through a visit to campus, conversation with alumni or reading the Clear Admit School Guide to MIT Sloan—will pay dividends here.

Video Prompt

Please introduce yourself to your future classmates via a brief video statement.

You will need to use an internet-connected computer, with a webcam and microphone.  As part of the application review, the Admission Committee will evaluate your response to see how you express yourself and to assess fit with the MIT Sloan culture. The simple, open-ended question is designed to help us get to know you better.

Instructions:

  • Please make sure you are using a working Internet connection not wireless or shared wireless connection. If your Internet is not a strong signal you will not be able to upload. Please also make sure you have the most up to date browser.  
  • You will need to use an internet-connected computer with a webcam and microphone. 
  • We suggest using Google Chrome* or Firefox as your browser.  
  • If using Google Chrome – please click the camera icon in your browser to allow the site to access your microphone. If you are having issues with your microphone please re-start your computer for Google Chrome to access your microphone.
  • Once the video statement question is viewed you will have 60 seconds to prepare, and then 60 seconds to record your answer.   
  • You will only have one attempt to record your response.

This year’s video prompt specifies an audience: one’s fellow students (rather than the admissions committee). While a brief mention of your professional background and career goals may be appropriate, we encourage applicants to use this opportunity to showcase elements of their personalities and candidacies that they will not have the chance to address in their other application materials. Perhaps you have a particularly interesting work or extra-curricular experience to share, or a personal accomplishment or aspect of your heritage of which you’re especially proud. By focusing on a range of qualities and characteristics, this video will allow applicants to demonstrate the well-rounded nature of their candidacies even within the minute limit. Speaking of length, do not hesitate to practice your response to ensure that it will be within the time limit—after all, you will only have one chance to record this. You should also record your response on your own and watch it so you can improve before the actual recording. The key caveat here is to not allow the practicing to lead to a robotic/overly rehearsed final video.

As this is a visual presentation that will be recorded live, ensure you are dressed in appropriate professional attire. In terms of a background, clean and steady may work best—you do not want to make the adcom dizzy by taking them on an unsteady walking tour with your laptop. While many applicants will be tempted to introduce props into their video, such as signs, souvenirs, or any prized possessions that might quickly convey who you are, we would like to urge some degree of caution in this domain.  A focused, one-minute, heartfelt introduction (while looking your audience in the eye) may be far more effective than a distracting string of props, signs, charts—each requiring valuable time to make transitions—not to mention careful attention to readability/visibility on screen.  This isn’t to say that displaying a prized souvenir from traveling along the Silk Road in Asia can’t work, it’s just that we want you to think carefully about how to best convey your message on video.

Optional Essay

Please provide any additional information you would like the Admissions Committee to know that may be helpful in evaluating your candidacy (i.e. choice of recommenders, areas of concern in your academic record, other extenuating circumstances, etc.). This information should be provided in a written format (200 words or less).
This prompt offers an opportunity to address elements of one’s application that require explanation (e.g. choice of recommender, a semester of poor undergraduate performance), and may also be an opportunity to share important information that isn’t captured elsewhere in one’s written materials.

Clear Admit Resources
Thanks for reading our analysis of this year’s MIT / Sloan MBA essay topic! As you work on your Sloan MBA essays and application, we encourage you to consider all of Clear Admit’s offerings:

Posted in: Essay Tips & Advice, Essay Topic Analysis, Essays

Schools: MIT Sloan

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Welcometo this article in which we will look at the MIT Sloan School of Management. If you are looking at applying to MIT this year, you have come to the right place.

 

Let’s first look at the MIT Sloan MBA program. The first thing you think of when you look at MIT, is Technology. You think of the focus MIT has on technology and engineering. You might think that MBA is isolated, but it’s not. You need to understand that it’s a university system. You can actually take courses in the technology programs that the other departments have. Even if you’re pursuing an MBA, you can still take an elective from other departments, and being on the MIT campus, you have a different way of looking at things. MIT is obviously a big place for a technology focus.

 

Second, MIT Sloan is one of the few programs which has a very condensed core. You just have the first semester where you are required to take the core courses, and the rest of it can be based on electives. You can pick and choose whatever you like. Very few schools have this flexibility so it’s a big plus point.

 

Third, in terms of international flavour, MIT Sloan has the maximum number of international students for any top MBA program.That’s again a huge plus if you’re looking at diversity among US MBA programs.

 

Finally, maybe because of the technology focus, MIT also has a strong focus on entrepreneurship. In fact, it is said that if all the companies out of MIT were to form a country, it would have the fifth largest GDP in the world. That’s the kind of history of entrepreneurship that you have in one single place. This is definitely a huge place for people who come from a tech background. If MIT is something that you have been dreaming of, you should be looking at the MBA program.

 

MIT Sloan 2017-2018 MBA Deadlines

 

Round 1

Application Deadline: September 25, 2017

Decision Notification: December 19, 2017

 

Round 2

Application Deadline: January 17, 2018

Decision Notification: April 3, 2018

 

Round 3

Application Deadline: April 9, 2018

Decision Notification: May 1, 2018

 

 

 

 

MIT / Sloan Essay Topic Analysis 2017-2018

 

Cover Letter

 

MIT Sloan seeks students whose personal characteristics demonstrate that they will make the most of the incredible opportunities at MIT, both academic and non-academic. We are on a quest to find those whose presence will enhance the experience of other students. We seek thoughtful leaders with exceptional intellectual abilities and the drive and determination to put their stamp on the world. We welcome people who are independent, authentic, and fearlessly creative — true doers. We want people who can redefine solutions to conventional problems, and strive to preempt unconventional dilemmas with cutting-edge ideas. We demand integrity and respect passion.

Taking the above into consideration, please submit a cover letter seeking a place in the MIT Sloan MBA Program. Your letter should conform to a standard business correspondence, include one or more examples that illustrate why you meet the desired criteria above, and be addressed to Mr. Rod Garcia, Senior Director of Admissions (300 words or fewer, excluding address and salutation).

 

You can see that there are a lot of questions asked. Don’t get lost. Just read it a couple of times, make sure you get a sense of what it is. Remember that you need to write in 300 words or fewer, excluding address and salutation.

 

You need to be writing a cover letter seeking a place in the MIT Sloan MBA program, taking into consideration “Your letter should conform to a standard business correspondence, include one or more examples that illustrate why you meet the desired criteria above, and be addressed to Mr. Rod Garcia, Senior Director of Admissions”. Now, first of all, what do you mean by “Standard Business Correspondence”?. Well, you need to first address the letter to Mr. Rod Garcia, Senior Director of Admissions, MIT, and then you need to write the content of the letter.

 

What is the difference between writing a letter as opposed to writing an essay? You are writing to a person, so make sure that your 300 words exclude the addresses and salutations. The actual meat of it is you talking about something more than one can get from your resume. Think about it. They have your resume, they have your application form, your recommenders and to top it, they also have your GMAT scores and undergraduate transcripts. They have everything about your working experiences so do not repeat what they already have. Pick the one or two things about you that they don’t know. Perhaps you’re an innovative thinker, maybe you are a problem solver. Maybe you believe in problem solving under frugality (or in India, as they say, “juggaad”). What have you done?  Maybe it’s a small motor pump that you took out from the engine and used for something completely different. Showcase through examples. One thing about MBA applications is, always give examples. First list down four to five traits that you think define you well. You can talk about innovation, risk-taking, leadership, team working, for example. Whatever you want to pick, pick and list out. You have 300 words. You can pick two things, and convey them in 300 words. Make sure you flesh out all the details, and tell them why you are unique. Tell them what it is that you hope to get through the MBA program, and what you are going to learn from the program. It’s really important that you pick those two things.

 

Now that you have told them who you are, talk about why MIT Sloan particularly excites you because you are this person.  What at MIT excites you? Why do you think it gels so well with who you are as a person? For example, if you spoke about innovation, you can have come to the “Mecca of Innovation”, but you have to be very specific. Mention the academics and non-academics pursuits that you want to get out of the program. You may not really be able to get it all out because you have the 300 word limit. You may not be able to write about your post-MBA goals, and be specific, but you can mention “This is who I am, this is what I am going to get from the MIT program.” Then allude to your post-MBA career without getting into the depth of it.

 

That is how 300 words should be structured. You can be creative in the way you want to express yourself but make sure you’re going to pick one or two important aspects. One mistake that people do is that they talk about ten different things. It just loses the focus of the message. Don’t do that, two should be the maximum.

 

 

Video Prompt

 

Please introduce yourself to your future classmates via a brief video statement.

You will need to use an internet-connected computer, with a webcam and microphone.  As part of the application review, the Admission Committee will evaluate your response to see how you express yourself and to assess fit with the MIT Sloan culture. The simple, open-ended question is designed to help us get to know you better.

 

Instructions:

   • Please make sure you are using a working Internet connection not wireless or shared wireless connection. If your Internet is not a strong signal you will not be able to upload. Please also make sure you have the most up to date browser.

   • You will need to use an internet-connected computer with a webcam and microphone.

   • We suggest using Google Chrome* or Firefox as your browser.

   • If using Google Chrome – please click the camera icon in your browser to allow the site to access your microphone. If you are having issues with your microphone please re-start your computer for Google Chrome to access your microphone.

   • Once the video statement question is viewed you will have 60 seconds to prepare, and then 60 seconds to record your answer.

   • You will only have one attempt to record your response.

 

 

Now, you’re introducing yourself. What you wrote in the cover letter is very different. You’re not going to introduce yourself to your classmates by saying “I am an innovator, I am a problem solver.” Instead, you need to talk about something about you, perhaps something more personal. Maybe you can talk about what you expect from the MBA program. Remember that you have only 60 seconds, and 60 seconds is very less. If you have a very long South Indian name, maybe 60 seconds gets consumed over there. You have to be very prudent in what you say. Be casual.

 

You just need a simple camera phone and it’s all sorted. Today’s phones come with very good picture quality and video quality. Now you need to make sure that you keep the camera in front of you. Keep it very simple, and nothing fancy. Make sure that the lighting is bright. That is an another mistake that people make. Don’t keep the light source behind you. You would look like Gautam Buddha. The light source should be in front of you so that your face looks clean. Also, make sure that your surrounding is clutter free. Make sure that the voice is being captured very clearly; again, your phone microphone will do its work so don’t really sweat too much on that.

 

When you’re speaking, take as many retakes as possible. Keep saying the same thing, do it for like 20 to 25 times in front of the mirror before you come in front of the camera.

 

Initially, when you start, you will become very conscious. Do you know how I know this? Well, I have done this, and I have been in your shoes. I know you get very conscious when you see the camera. Sometimes, you know capturing that moment is for posterity, and you feel a bit stressed, but here is the thing, if you keep doing this multiple times, you will get the hang of it.

 

What is it that I should speak?

 

    • Speak about yourself. Be casual.

    • Talk about your interest

    • You can even include a quirk

    • You can say what you love doing

 

For example, “I love gaming and I challenge all you counter-strike aficionados to come challenge me for a game.”

 

Something of that sort; make yourself sound interesting. I should be able to look at the video and say, “this is the guy/girl I would like to meet.” That’s really the intent of the video essay.

 

Optional Essay

 

Please provide any additional information you would like the Admissions Committee to know that may be helpful in evaluating your candidacy (i.e. choice of recommenders, areas of concern in your academic record, other extenuating circumstances, etc.). This information should be provided in a written format (200 words or less).

 

You can use this essay to convey your gaps in education or gaps in employment, or use it to convey something that you couldn’t say anywhere else. But please don’t try to retrofit stories that you couldn’t fit anywhere else. Don’t feel pressured to write anything over here.

 

I know it’s not easy, especially if you haven’t done a video essay before. It can be tough. If you would like us to help you with your application to MIT, please let us know. You can click the link below.

 

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