Your Chances: Columbia Business School Acceptance Rate & Other Factors [2024]

2023-2024 Application Cycle: Special Note for Round 2 and Round 3 Applicants Invited for an MBA Interview

Wondering about your chances now that you’ve been invited to an interview?

Unfortunately, there’s no way to answer to this question with certainty, as business schools do not publish figures on interview invites.

It is safe to guess that MBA programs interview approximately double the number of people they intend to admit. In crude terms, this means that your chances of acceptance are good—around 50%.

But remember that there are other factors at play which are not reflected in this generalized statement:

  • The post-interview decision will still depend on the strength of your application: outstanding applicants will have a better chance both pre- and post-interview.
  • Less competitive applicants—with lower GMAT scores, sub-optimal employers, and a less prestigious undergraduate degree—will be under more pressure to impress than a highly competitive applicant.
  • Anyone can have a surprising interview—for better or for worse.

Regardless of your initial application, your next step should be to prepare as effectively as possible for your MBA interview—with someone who has interview experience and an understanding of the program you’re applying to.

Menlo Coaching offers personalized, professional MBA interview preparation, tailored to your specific target programs.

See Your Interview Prep Options

If you’re wondering how difficult it is to get into Columbia Business School, then you’ve come to the right place. On this page, we’ll give you a quick overview of what it takes to get into CBS, and help you understand whether your profile is a good fit for Columbia’s MBA program.

Read on to see important key admission factors to help you determine your odds of getting accepted at Columbia Business School.

Fast Facts: Columbia MBA

Acceptance Rate20%
GMAT Average730
GPA Average3.5
Avg. Years Work Experience5

Note: As many MBA programs elected not to release acceptance rates for the class of 2025, some of our reported acceptance rates are based on estimates.

Undergraduate Majors Represented in CBS’s MBA Program 

The top undergraduate majors represented in CBS’s MBA program are Business / Economics (35%) , Economics (28%), and Engineering (17%)

Top Undergraduate Universities represented in CBS’s MBA Class

The undergraduate universities most represented in CBS’s MBA class profile are: 

  • Columbia University
  • Cornell University
  • The University of Pennsylvania
  • Northwestern University
  • University of Michigan
  • Boston College
  • Brown University
  • Vanderbilt University
  • University of Virginia
  • Duke University
  • Yale University

If your undergraduate college is listed above, that means that Columbia has accepted many applicants with your education background in the past. It also shows that candidates who have gone to these schools have considered applying to Columbia, and it is one indication that the business school has found students who have completed their undergraduate education at these universities to be successful.   

Columbia’s Top Pre-MBA Industries

Columbia’s top pre-MBA industries are financial services (29%), consulting (21%), and marketing/media (12%). 

Looking at the pre-MBA industries shows you whether your profile is well-represented at Columbia. Don’t worry if you don’t see your industry on the list—there might not be many students enrolled from your industry simply because many candidates didn’t apply to the program in the first place. The same goes for the pre-MBA employers data we’ve provided below.

Top Pre-MBA Employers Represented at Columbia

The pre-MBA companies that are most represented in Columbia’s MBA class are: 

What does Columbia value?

Columbia really values building connections with local companies. If you attend Columbia’s MBA program, you will find several opportunities to network with companies in the NYC area. For instance, through CBS’s Immersion Seminars, students can visit top executives in the company’s New York City offices to have candid conversations with them.

Early Birds Toolkit

Learn 3 Steps You Should Take NOW to Improve Your Profile for R1 2024

In MBA admissions, starting early can significantly boost your chances. 

But there are no shortcuts, and while R1 2024 deadlines might seem far off, building your profile takes time.

Our Early Birds Toolkit has everything you need to get started right now—leave your name and email, and we’ll send you three actionable steps to elevate your profile, plus time-saving tools for faster progress.