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Babson Video Essay Reddit

Many colleges and universities require students to submit supplemental essays along with their main personal statement. The essays they require vary greatly in length, prompt, and theme. The Babson College 2017-18 supplement stands out from the crowd, because students are given the option to choose between submitting an essay or a video!


The supplement reads:

“Life is a collection of moments, some random, some significant. Right now, you are applying to Babson College. What moment led you here?

We invite you to submit your answer in either essay OR video format. If you choose to submit a video, please limit your response to a 1-minute video, which can be submitted via a shared link to YouTube or another video hosting website. (500 words maximum)”

This option gives students the opportunity to respond in a way that best reflects their interests, talents, and skillz. Our advice would be to choose the medium you feel most comfortable with and get funky with it!

Babson College also asks students to respond to a pretty common supplemental essay prompt (just like UVA):

Why are you interested in Babson College (200 word maximum)?

For more on that, visit our breakdown of the why essay in all its glory.

PROSPECTIVE business school students can reel off the steps of the MBA admissions process by rote, listing the standardised tests, written exams and face-to-face interviews required as easily as the alphabet. The process has remained essentially the same for decades, in large part because it successfully winnows out the weaker candidates. But for a handful of schools, the standard admissions process has changed, bringing in new technology. Video essays are now another hoop MBA candidates have to jump through at some American schools, including Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, and Europe, where INSEAD has included a video component this summer.

The “video essay” is simply preparing students for their careers upon graduation, believes Melissa Rapp, director of admissions at Kellogg. Video conferences make up an increasing proportion of the average executive’s working week; prospective employers are as likely to interview MBA students via videolink as in person before offering them a job. Video is “an integral part of the business landscape,” she explains. It also makes it easier for stretched business school admissions teams to “meet” candidates from around the world and to assess their communications skills in a better way than a written, pre-prepared essay. Kellogg has introduced three rounds of video essays, encompassing business practice and personality, in an attempt better to differentiate highly-skilled candidates from one another.

Kellogg’s video essay poses questions of applicants, giving them 20 seconds to formulate an answer, which they must conclude within 60 seconds. The goal, the school says, is to figure out who can think on their feet and quickly grasp concepts and challenges—important skills in the real-life world environment. Though sceptics may see it as an extra hurdle to be surmounted, in reality the video-based interaction can be a boon to candidates, allowing them to put across their personality in a way that is not possible on the page.

Video questioning is not a new innovation, but is born out of recent technological developments. Yale School of Management first investigated the idea in 2011; this is its fourth year asking every applicant a series of questions over video in real-time. The “video question,” as the school calls it, is useful for Yale to establish applicants’ standard of English and their ability to speak extemporaneously, explains Bruce DelMonico, Yale’s head of admissions. It combines written interviews with in-person interviews, allowing a more rounded view of an applicant. Yale asks three questions of candidates, focused on leadership, behaviour and concluding with a statement applicants are asked to agree or disagree with, then explain their reasoning.

This additional stage in the admissions process is relatively new, and business schools are still honing their methods. Yale has tweaked its questions each year it has conducted video interviews, explains Mr DelMonico, in response to applicants’ feedback and its success in finding the best candidates. But already it is proving a benefit to business schools. MBAs of the future across the globe—not just in a select few schools—may have one more step to add to their checkbox list before starting their MBA programme.

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