ERIC Number: EJ1164793
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018-Feb
Abstractor: As Provided
Interpersonal Skills in MBA Admissions: How Are They Conceptualized and Assessed?
Beenen, Gerard; Pichler, Shaun; Davoudpour, Shahin
Journal of Management Education, v42 n1 p34-54 Feb 2018
Employers and students concur that soft skills or interpersonal skills are critical to managerial success, yet we know little about how MBA program admissions professionals conceptualize and assess these skills in the context of global management education. Such practices have key implications for interpersonal skills curriculum and training in MBA programs around the globe. A survey of 182 MBA admissions professionals from 24 countries revealed surprising agreement in how interpersonal skills were conceptualized, and suggest interpersonal skills and soft skills are not synonymous. Results also indicated that only 30% of U.S. and international MBA programs use specific criteria to assess applicants' interpersonal skills, with the remainder using nonspecific criteria or no assessment method. We discuss the need for more rigorous assessment of interpersonal skills in MBA admissions, closer coordination between admissions officers and curriculum developers, and tighter alignment between interpersonal skills assessment and MBA curriculum and learning outcomes.
Descriptors: Interpersonal Competence, Masters Programs, Business Administration Education, Outcomes of Education, Management Development, Surveys, Admissions Officers, Curriculum Development, Admission Criteria, Evaluation Methods, Graduate Students, Coding, Taxonomy, Politics of Education
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
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