A Six-Item Check List before Hitting “Submit”

by on January 9th, 2010

WAIT! Don’t hit “submit” just yet! You may think you’re done with your MBA application, but it can’t hurt (unless you are literally at the deadline) to go over it one last time to make sure that all elements are intact and that you’re submitting compelling, articulate work that truly represents who you are.

During your final once-over you should make sure that:

1. Your application as a whole accurately represents a holistic picture of you.

Check that each section of the application presents you as a strong candidate. The adcoms should finish reading your essays with a clear idea of you as an individual—not a label, member of a group, or generic professional.

2. You’ve demonstrated fit.

What adcoms want to know, more than almost anything else, is that you’ll fit snugly with their program’s ideals, goals, and culture. Show why you belong at School X now and how its program will help you achieve your goals. 

3. Your recommenders know you well.

Choose your recommenders wisely. If they don’t really know you, then their assessment of you will come off as generic or superficial. Choose recommenders who can provide specific, concrete examples of the attributes they claim you have.

4. Someone has reviewed your essays.

Have a friend, family member, or better yet, an Accepted.com editor, read your essays and give you constructive criticism. Now is not the time to be shy or easily offended about your writing; you’ll want to know every possible error in your essays before you submit them. And you’ll want good advice on fixing the mistakes.

5. You’ve proofread.

And then you’ve proofread again. Run spell check, run grammar check, print out your entire application, read it aloud, read it into a voice recorder and then play back the recording, send it to your Accepted.com editor—do everything you need to do to make sure that your application is clean, clear, and void of careless mistakes.

6. It’s not the last minute.

If you’re rushing to get your application in before the buzzer, you’ll likely skip some of the above steps and send in a less-than-perfect application. Additionally, servers are often overloaded due to heavy last-minute volume. Submit a day or two early.

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