Last Updated on November 15, 2023 by Robert C. Hoopes
LinkedIn recently released its much-anticipated Top MBA Programs 2023 ranking, providing insights into the best 50 American business schools for career growth. The ranking, which aligns with other well-known rankings such as U.S. News & World Report and Bloomberg Businessweek, aims to guide aspiring MBAs in their decision-making process.
However, the methodology behind LinkedIn’s ranking has raised questions among experts. Unlike other rankings, LinkedIn does not disclose the weights assigned to each measure or provide underlying data. This lack of clarity makes it difficult to assess the validity and reliability of the ranking.
Nevertheless, the LinkedIn ranking is based on five key pillars: hiring and demand, ability to advance, network strength, leadership potential, and gender diversity. These pillars play a crucial role in determining a business school’s position in the rankings.
In order to be considered for the ranking, a business school must have a minimum of 2,000 alumni by August 31, 2023, with at least 500 alumni graduating between 2018 and 2022. This requirement ensures that schools with a significant number of alumni are included in the rankings.
One notable aspect of the LinkedIn ranking is its divergence from other rankings. For example, while U.S. News recognizes the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business as the number one program, LinkedIn ranks it at 9th place. Similarly, Babson College is ranked 29th by LinkedIn but holds no rank in the U.S. News ranking.
LinkedIn’s approach focuses on outputs and tracks a program’s performance over a five-year period. It rewards programs for higher job placements, alumni promotions, executive experience, and alumni achievements. However, one drawback of this ranking is the lack of index scores, making it difficult to compare numerical differences between different business schools.
Moreover, the LinkedIn ranking fails to provide information on how different programs perform against each other in different areas. It also does not address crucial factors like the size and prestige of different companies or whether schools are treated equally in terms of company affiliations.
While the LinkedIn MBA ranking offers a panoramic view of how MBAs fare in their early years after graduation, some critics argue that it lacks transparency and comprehensive information. The ranking’s methodology and lack of quantifiable measures may make it challenging for prospective students to fully understand and interpret the results.
Aspiring MBAs should consider multiple rankings, including LinkedIn’s, to gain a comprehensive understanding of different program strengths and weaknesses. Ultimately, the choice of a business school should be based on a combination of factors, such as career goals, program curriculum, faculty, and location, rather than relying solely on one ranking.