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Full-time MBA Admissions FAQ

We have compiled the most frequently asked questions from applicants that we receive each year and keep this information up to date to be helpful and informative to applicants. If you have any questions after reviewing our recommendations below, you can always reach out to [email protected] so that we may best assist you.

GPA

The application asks for my GPA is several sections. Should I report my cumulative GPA or my last 60/90 credits?

We recommend that you report and enter your cumulative undergraduate GPA, as stated on your bachelor’s degree transcript, in all sections that ask for your GPA on the application.

Should I calculate my GPA based on my last 60/90 credits?

We recommend that you report your cumulative undergraduate GPA throughout your application. You do not need to calculate the last 60 semester/90 quarter credits, which is typically the coursework within your major, unless you have that information readily available on your transcript.

Do I need to calculate my GPA on a U.S. 4.0 scale?

Yes. We ask all applicants to calculate their cumulative undergraduate GPA on a U.S. 4.0 scale if your institution’s grading scale is not on a 4.0 scale. Please use the Scholaro GPA conversion resources provided in the application portal.

I attended a school outside of the United States. How do I report my GPA if it is not on a U.S. 4.0 scale?

All applicants should calculate their GPA to a U.S. 4.0 scale if the GPA isn’t already on this scale. Please use the Scholaro GPA conversion resources provided in the application portal to calculate your GPA to a U.S. 4.0 scale.

My school does not provide grades. How do I report my GPA?

Most schools provide some form of letter or number grades, marks, percentages or other form of scoring. Please calculate your institution’s scoring methods to a U.S. 4.0 scale. If your university does not provide grades, there is a box on the application which you can check to indicate this.

My GPA is below a 3.0. Can I still apply?

Yes, you are welcome to apply if your GPA is below a 3.0. Each year we admit applicants with GPA’s that may fall below a preferred 3.0 GPA who have strong MBA qualifications. We recommend that you refer to our Class Profile and consider how you can strengthen your application and demonstrate your academic readiness in other parts of your application. Our admissions counselors would be happy to talk with you more about this if you’d like to make an appointment by emailing us at [email protected].

What happens if my recommender has not submitted their letter of recommendation by the deadline?

Please aim to have a complete application by the deadline, including two required letters of recommendation. Remember, we always advise you reach out to your recommenders well in advance and give them gentle reminders on the deadline! However, you can submit your application even if your recommendations have not been received. Please connect with your recommenders and let them know that your recommendations should be submitted by the deadline. Please contact us if you are experiencing a delay with your recommender so we can make a note of that.

If I am a re-applicant from a previous year to either the Full-time or Evening MBA Program. Can I reuse my letter(s) of recommendation from a previous year?

Yes, you can reuse letter(s) of recommendation.  You should first ensure the prior recommendations are the most accurate and current letters of recommendation that you want included in your new application before proceeding.  Please note that any dates or language specific to your previous application will remain part of these recommendation(s).

If you would like to use prior year recommendations, please follow these steps closely so that we can transfer your prior letters of recommendation into your new application.

Please designate your recommender(s) in your online application and select that they will submit their recommendation by mail. This ensures that your recommender(s) will not receive an automated email requesting their recommendation.

Once you submit your application, email [email protected] and let us know that you would like to reuse previous letter(s) of recommendation, the previous year you applied, and your application ID numbers.

Do I need to submit an official or unofficial transcript in my application?

We recommend that you scan copies of your original transcripts and upload them as a PDF file to your application. Make sure to include all pages and any transcript keys that describe the institution’s grading scale. These are typically found on the back side of most domestic transcripts. Self-generated online grade reports or versions that have been cut and pasted into a Word document will not be accepted.

Where do I send my official transcript?

Please do not send official transcripts to our office by mail or digitally. You may submit your application using copies of your original official transcripts. Should you be admitted to Foster, we will provide further instructions on how to submit your official transcripts to the University of Washington Graduate School once an offer of admission is extended.

How do I submit my transcript if the file is too large to upload to my application?

Please attempt to compress your transcript file size using tools such as Adobe Acrobat or other PDF compressors and upload it to your application. If your transcript is still too large, please email [email protected] for assistance.

Does my transcript need to be translated if it is not in English?

Yes, if your original transcript is not in English, you must submit an official translation in addition to the copy of your original transcript. Transcripts and degree documents that are in a language other than English must be accompanied with an official English translation (translated by a university, government official/organization, or a certified translation service, example: American Translators Association.)

Do I need to submit transcripts for every school I have attended, including schools that I transferred from or where I did not earn a degree?

Please submit your transcript from the undergraduate institution where you earned your bachelor’s degree at a minimum. We also recommend that you include transcripts for all other coursework that you would like to be considered with your application, including other colleges or universities where you have earned transfer credits or completed other coursework. You should also include transcripts for any graduate degrees earned or additional coursework taken.

Do I need to submit a transcript if I took classes to earn a certificate or pursued continuing education?

Please include transcripts for all pertinent coursework and academic history that you would like the admissions committee to consider with your application.

I have a 3-year bachelor’s degree. Can I still apply?

The University of Washington Graduate School requires that all graduate students have the equivalent to a 4-year undergraduate degree from the United States for admission. In some situations, additional course work or degrees in addition to a 3-year degree may meet the requirement. If you have questions about your degree prior to applying, please inquire at [email protected].

Can I have the TOEFL or IELTS requirement waived?

All applicants should meet the University of Washington’s English Language Proficiency requirement. We cannot waive this requirement and we cannot waive the TOEFL or IELTS exam. However, you may choose a method other than the TOEFL or IELTS exam to meet the requirement, if applicable. There are several ways to demonstrate English Language Proficiency outlined in the UW Graduate School Memo 8 if English is not your native language. If English is not your native language, you must demonstrate English Proficiency and meet this minimum admission requirement to the University in one of the ways outlined by the UW Graduate School Memo 8.

My transcript is in English. Does this satisfy the English Language Proficiency requirement?

No, transcripts in English do not satisfy the English Language Proficiency requirement for a Medium of Instruction document. Your transcript or an official letter from your college or university must clearly state that the Medium of Instruction was 100% in English to fulfill the requirement.

My university conducts all courses in English, do I still need to take the TOEFL or IELTS?

You do not need to take the TOEFL or IELTS exam if the Medium of Instruction of your entire undergraduate degree program was in English and your transcript clearly states that the Medium of Instruction was English. In this case, you may provide an official letter or documentation from your university stating that the Medium of Instruction was English to meet the English Language Proficiency requirement.

English is not my native language, but I am living and working in the United States. Do I still need to take the TOEFL or IELTS Exam?

You must submit documentation of English Language Proficiency as outlined in the UW Graduate School Memo 8 if English is not your native language. Living and working in the United States does not satisfy the English Language Proficiency requirement.

Do I need to submit my official TOEFL or IELTS scores? How do I report my official scores to Foster?

If you are submitting the TOEFL or IELTS exam to meet the English Language Requirement, official TOEFL or IELTS scores are required. Please submit official TOEFL scores to the UW Graduate School using school code 4854 on the ETS website.

English is not my native language, but I attended university in the United States or another English-speaking country. Do I still need to take the TOEFL or IELTS?

You will not be required to take the TOEFL or IELTS exam if you have earned a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree from an institution in Australia, the Bahamas, Canada, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago, United Kingdom, or the United States, and where English is the Medium of Instruction. Please be sure to submit complete transcripts with your application as documentation.

Does Foster accept the TOEFL My Best Score?

Yes, we accept the TOEFL My Best Score.

Does Foster accept the Duolingo English Test?

Yes, we accept the Duolingo English Test. The University of Washington Graduate School is accepting Duolingo English Test scores through Autumn 2022. Applicants should have a minimum score of 120.

In the Employment History section of the application, should I report my work experience in order of  position or by company/organization?

You should report your employment history in chronological order to best represent your professional growth and experience.

In the Employment History section of the application, do I need to list all work experience, including part time jobs or internships?

In the online application, you may list your post-college work experience in the Employment History section if you prefer. Please do make sure that your resume is comprehensive and includes all relevant work experience, including part-time work and internships.

I don’t have any work experience; can I still apply to the MBA Program?

Admissions to the Full-time MBA Program is competitive and work experience is highly valued. While you are welcome to apply with no work experience, the average student enters the program with strong work experience. Please refer to our current Class Profile for information on the average work experience of admitted students.

Does Foster require GMAT or GRE scores?

Applicants are encouraged to apply with a GMAT or GRE score, and either is accepted. However, applicants also have the option to apply with no test score. For Autumn 2022 and 2023 entry, Foster will provide applicants the option to apply “Test Optional” to the Full-time MBA Program without a standardized test score.

While applicants are welcome to apply without test scores, admission to the Full-time MBA Program is competitive, and we still strongly encourage applicants to consider submitting GMAT or GRE scores for a number of reasons, including demonstrating academic preparedness, scholarship consideration, and future career screenings that rely on GMAT or GRE scores. Please review the Test Optional FAQ section for information on requirements for applying without a GMAT or GRE score.

How do I report my official GMAT or GRE scores to Foster?

If you are applying with GMAT or GRE scores for consideration with your application, please be sure to report your official test scores to the University of Washington Graduate School in order to complete your application. We will conduct an initial review of all applications with self-reported scores, but official test scores are required before an admission decision will be made.

To report your official GMAT scores, use school code 459-75-20. To report your official GRE scores, use school code 4854.

I have taken the GMAT or GRE more than once. Which score will Foster consider?

We will always consider your highest overall test score. We do not consider the highest combined test section scores from multiple exams.

Can I have the GMAT or GRE requirement waived?

While we do not waive application requirements, Foster will provide applicants the option to apply “Test Optional” to the Full-time MBA Program for Autumn 2022 and 2023 entry without a standardized test score. Please review the Test Optional FAQ section for information on requirements for applying without a GMAT or GRE score and tips from our admissions team on crafting a competitive application.

How soon after the deadline do I need to report my official GMAT or GRE scores?

Please submit your official GMAT or GRE test scores as close to the application deadline as possible. While we can conduct an initial review of your application with your self-reported scores, official scores are required before an admission decision can be made.

I plan on re-taking the GMAT or GRE after the application deadline. Will my new scores be considered?

You are welcome to report updated test scores. Please indicate in the Optional Essay that you plan to retake the exam and include the date of your scheduled exam. Reach out to us at [email protected] once you have received your initial score report to let us know you have new scores available for review. Please also ensure you update your application with new self-reported test scores and report official scores to the University of Washington. Please keep in mind that, while the admissions committee will do their best to consider updated scores, scores submitted after the application deadline are not guaranteed to be considered with your application.

Does Foster prefer one test over another?

There is no preference between the GMAT or GRE. In our holistic review process, we consider a number of factors to determine your ability to handle the academic rigors of the program, achieve success in the career development process, and contribute actively and positively to our community. Test scores are just one piece of information considered in the review process.

Do you accept the Executive Assessment (EA) for admission to the Full-time MBA Program?

No, we do not. Applicants to the Full-time MBA Program may submit GMAT or GRE test scores.

I’m having trouble accessing a testing site due to COVID-19, what are my other options to take an exam?

The GMAT and GRE exams are offered in an online, at-home test format to provide options to test takers unable to take a test center-based exam because of the virus.

I can’t get an online GMAT or GRE exam date until after the application deadline. Can I apply with no test scores and update my application after the deadline?

Applicants should apply to the earliest application deadline to which they can submit their strongest complete application. If you are unable to take the GMAT or GRE before the application deadline, we advise looking ahead to preparing a strong and complete application for the next application round.

The University of Washington Foster School of Business has announced that standardized test scores are now optional for applicants to the Foster Full-Time MBA Program for Autumn 2022 and 2023 entry. Any applicant who is able to demonstrate strong quantitative skills through their prior academic work and/or recent professional experiences may apply for admission to the Full-Time MBA for Autumn 2022 or 2023 entry without a standardized test score (GMAT or GRE). International applicants are still strongly encouraged to submit a valid standardized test score as part of the application process given the competitiveness of the international applicant pool.

Which standardized tests does the Full-Time MBA Program accept?

The Full-time MBA Program accepts the GMAT and GRE standardized tests. For Autumn 2022 and Autumn 2023 admission, Foster will provide candidates the option to apply without a standardized test score.

Should I consider applying without a test score? What factors make an applicant well-suited to submit an application without a test score?

All candidates are required to meet the following criteria:

For a candidate to be competitive without a test score, they must demonstrate quantitative and program readiness by meeting several of the following criteria:

  • Strong quantitative or analytical ability demonstrated throughout educational records, with a GPA at or above average as listed on the class profile.
  • An undergraduate, masters, or advanced degree in STEM or a business-related major, with strong performance and multiple quantitative or analytical courses.
  • Clearly demonstrated quantitative or analytical professional work experience. Professional certifications in a quantitative-related field, e.g., CPA, CFA, PE, etc.
  • Four or more years of progressively responsible professional work experience which demonstrate deep quantitative or analytical aptitude.

These criteria will be considered in holistic review along with other elements of the application including transcripts, resume, essays, recommendations and admissions interview, in the context of the competitiveness of the overall applicant pool.

Meeting the above criteria does not ensure admittance to a Foster MBA program. If you believe your academic readiness is best demonstrated by an exam, we encourage you to provide an exam score.

Are there circumstances in which it might be helpful to submit test scores?

Yes, there are several reasons to submit a test score:

  • If you had weaker performance as an undergraduate student with a GPA below the class average, a strong test score can help demonstrate quantitative aptitude or mitigate concerns regarding academic readiness.
  • Though recruiting practices vary, a strong GMAT or GRE score can be a consideration in finding employment. Employers in some industries, particularly finance, investment banking, and consulting, could request GMAT or GRE scores in their screening and hiring process.
  • A strong standardized test score can strengthen your qualification for fellowships and scholarships.

How do I apply without a test score?

To apply test optional, please complete all questions in the “Test Optional Summary of Qualifications” section of the application. It is required that you compete all questions in this section for full consideration.

You are not required to self-report GMAT or GRE scores. Please skip the GMAT and GRE sections in the application and leave them blank.

What questions are asked in the “Test Optional Summary of Qualifications” section of the application?

You will be asked to answer two short-answer questions. Both questions should be answered fully, and we advise that you stick to a 75-word maximum response to each question. The two questions are:

  1. Please detail the specific evidence in your academic experience that supports your analytical and quantitative preparedness for success in the MBA program.
  2. Please detail the specific evidence in your professional experience that supports your analytical and quantitative preparedness for success in the MBA program.

We encourage you to type your responses in a Word Document first to ensure spelling and grammar accuracy, and that your responses meet the character limit, and then copy and paste your responses into your application.

If I have already reported a test score to the University of Washington for an application to the Foster School of Business, will it be used in the admissions process for my Full-Time MBA application?

Yes, if you have already reported test scores to the University of Washington Graduate School, these scores will be reviewed and considered as part of your application for admission. If multiple test scores are submitted, your strongest result will be considered.

I have reported test scores to the University of Washington, but I do not wish for these to be considered in my Full-time MBA Application. What do I do?

If you previously reported a test score to the University of Washington and do not want any test scores considered in your application for Autumn 2022 or 2023, you can indicate as such in the Test Optional Summary of Qualifications.

Can you use an expired score in the evaluation of my application?

GMAT and GRE scores are valid for five years, but you may point to the results of an expired test score as evidence of quantitative or verbal aptitude in your request to be considered without a standardized test score.

Please self-report the test scores in your application and upload a PDF copy of the GMAT or GRE score report to the “Optional Essay” section of the application along with a note that you would like us to consider your expired test scores.

I’ve already started an application for the Full-Time MBA Program. Can I apply test optional?

If you are planning to apply test optional, start a new application to the Full-Time MBA program for Autumn 2022 or 2023 entry after the application opens. Previous applications you have started will not include the option for test optional.

Can I apply as a test optional applicant if I am applying through The Consortium for Graduate Studies in Management?

Yes, applicants applying through The Consortium can also select to apply test optional. Applicants will be asked to complete a Test Optional Summary of Qualifications form as part of the application through The Consortium. Consortium applicants are welcome to email us at [email protected] if there are any questions.

Who do I contact if I have questions that are not addressed here about applying Test Optional?

If you have questions about how to submit your strongest application, you can schedule an informational interview with an admissions counselor by emailing [email protected].

When can I expect to receive my invitation to complete the required video interview?

You can expect an email invitation to complete your required video interview 3-4 business days after the application deadline.

When will I know if I am invited to an admission interview?

Admission interviews are by invitation only and will be sent by email to select applicants 3-5 weeks after the application deadline.

When can I expect a decision on my application?

Please refer to the Admissions webpage for application decision notification dates by round.

Can Foster provide me feedback on my application if I am denied admission?

Unfortunately, we are unable to provide denied candidates with feedback. There normally is not a single deciding factor that led to a denial, and the decision is usually dependent on the competitiveness of the entire applicant pool. If you are interested in reapplying for the program next year and wish to speak with an admissions counselor about ways to strengthen your application, you may contact [email protected] to schedule an appointment.

What if I want to defer my acceptance and attend the following year?

If you are admitted to the program and need to defer for one academic year, you can formally request to defer. The admissions committee considers these requests on a case-by-case basis.

I haven’t received an admission interview invitation yet. Does that mean I am not being invited to interview at all?

We continue to review applications and communicate with applicants regarding next steps in the admissions process throughout the application round.

What are the merit scholarships available to the Full-time MBA Program?

Each year we award a significant number of merit scholarships, ranging from $10,000 to $60,000 for the duration of the 2-year program. We may also award Tuition Waivers to out-of-state students, which reduces the non-resident tuition obligation to the lower, in-state tuition rate, in addition to merit scholarships. Additionally, Consortium applicants who are awarded Consortium Fellowships receive a full-tuition and fees scholarship for the duration of the 2-year program.

How do I apply for merit scholarships?

All applicants are considered for merit-based scholarships upon application to the Full-time MBA Program. Your application for admission is also your application for scholarship consideration, and we consider all aspects of your application when awarding merit-based scholarships. There is no separate or additional application to be considered for Foster scholarships.

How do I apply to be considered for ROMBA or Forté Fellowships?

If you are interested in being considered for ROMBA or Forté Fellowships, we encourage you to complete the Optional Diversity, Equity & Inclusion essay as part of your application to indicate how you might be a strong candidate for consideration of these fellowship awards. The Option Diversity, Equity & Inclusion essay states:

“At the Foster School of Business, we embrace diversity as one of the foundations of both successful business strategy and a world-class educational experience. We share the University’s dedication to promoting the understanding and appreciation of human differences, and the constructive expression of ideas. We welcome you to share some of the ways you have practiced inclusion, promoted equity or supported the advancement of underrepresented groups.”

How do I apply for a Consortium Fellowship?

To be considered for a Consortium Fellowship, applicants must apply through The Consortium for Graduate Management Studies. Please visit The Consortium website to learn more about the application process and requirements and the benefits of Consortium membership.

Does Foster offer an application fee waiver?

Unfortunately, Foster is unable to offer fee waivers. The application fee is managed by the UW Graduate School. A limited number of fee waivers are available through The Graduate School based on financial need. Please visit the Graduate School website for more information.

What is the application deadline for international students?

The Round 2 application deadline is the final deadline for international applicants. This ensures proper time for enrolling students to obtain the necessary visas by the start of the academic year.

Can I apply to multiple Foster MBA programs?

Yes, you are welcome to apply to multiple MBA programs at Foster. Each MBA or master’s program has its own application and admissions process, so you will need to complete an application to each individual program you wish to apply to.

Do you have rolling admission?

We review applications at the deadline to which they were submitted and send out admission decisions in general within 2-3 months after the deadline. Please see the Admission Notification dates for the date to which you can expect to hear a final admission decision.

Can I apply to start in the spring term?

Our program starts once a year in the fall.

I am having technical issues submitting my video interview. What do I do?

The video interview is hosted by Kira Talent, and applicants can request technical support 24/7 from Kira Talent in the online video interview platform.

Please reach out to us at [email protected] if you have any issues completing your video interview by the deadline. Our team will work with you to provide options for submitting your video.

The online application portal says I cannot submit my application because I have missing or incomplete requirements, but those requirements are listed as optional. How do I complete my application and submit it?

You can submit your application without completing any of the optional requirements. If the UW Graduate School application portal is not allowing you to submit your application, it is likely due to an incomplete requirement that you have not attended to, and not due to any optional items. Please review your application for completeness and errors. You can submit your application without items marked with an asterisk (*) or double asterisk (**) even if they are listed as incomplete.