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Controversy over the UK government’s work visa policy has not deterred aspiring MBAs from outside the UK from applying to UK schools, according to the latest (2011) test result figures from the Graduate Management Admissions Council (GMAC), administrators of the GMAT test. Indeed the UK is now the second country of choice for MBA applicants after the US, overtaking Canada, which ranked second in the 2007 survey.
According to GMAC 4.49 per cent of all test-takers sent their test scores to UK schools in 2011, up from 3.39 per cent in 2007. The US still dominates as the MBA location of choice, however, with 77.24 per cent of applicants sending their test scores to US schools. This is marginally down from the 82.7 per cent recorded in the 2007 survey. Nearly 98 per cent of US MBA applicants only apply to US schools.
However, the number of US citizens sitting the GMAT dropped between 2007 and 2011 from 117,321 to 116,546, after reaching a peak of more than 130,000 in 2009, at the height of the recession. The number of test-takers in every other region grew over the four year period, particularly in Asia. The number of test-takers in Western Europe grew from 13,279 to 18,698 between 2007 and 2011.
Test-takers in Western Europe are more selective in the MBA schools they target, according to GMAC. On average they send their test scores to just two business schools. In contrast, test-takers in central and south Asia sends their test scores to four schools or more. According the GMAC the most common behaviour is for examinees to send either five score reports or just one.