Tuck Introduces Essay and Reference Questions Mapped to New Admissions Criteria

MBA applicants and their references will respond to new prompts when the 2018-19 application opens in mid-July.

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prospective MBA student writing essays
MBA application essay prompts and reference questions align with Tuck’s new evaluation criteria.

Prospective MBA students preparing a 2018-19 application now have even greater insight into how Tuck evaluates candidates. 

The evaluation criteria released by Tuck Admissions in early June—identifying successful candidates as smart, nice, accomplished and aware—map directly to corresponding parts of the school’s updated MBA application.

The new essay prompts and reference questions released today are examples of this alignment and the team’s commitment to make the Tuck application process as transparent as possible.

“The two essays map directly to aware and nice,” explains Luke Anthony Peña, executive director of admissions and financial aid. “The essays invite reflection on these criteria because you have opportunity elsewhere to demonstrate that you are smart, through your GMAT, GRE and transcripts, and accomplished per your resume.”

Applicants will now articulate their goals in short-answer questions.

“We care a great deal about your awareness of your future goals. We just don’t believe that you need to craft an entire narrative around them. Now you’ll have the opportunity to state them, crisply and concisely, in short-answer form,” says Peña.

Essay Questions

  1. Tuck students are aware of how their individuality adds to the fabric of Tuck. Tell us who you are and what you will contribute. (500 words)
  2. Tuck students are nice, and invest generously in one another’s success.  Share an example of how you helped someone else succeed. (500 words)

Short-Answer Questions

  1. Share your short-term goals. (50 words)
  2. Share your long-term goals. (50 words)
  3. How did you arrive at these goals? (75 words)
  4. How will Tuck help you achieve these goals? (75 words)

Tuck’s reference letter questions remain distinctive relative to other schools.

“We’ve thought carefully about our letter of reference questions. They too strategically map to each of our four criteria, and help us get to know you best,” continues Peña. “We also recognize that applying to business school is a significant investment of time and energy for both you and your references. We strongly prefer responses to our questions but will also accept responses to other questions including those posed by the Common Letter of Recommendation.”

Letter of Reference Short-Answer Questions

  1. What is your relationship with the candidate? (25 words)
  2. How long have you known the candidate? (25 words)
  3. How often do you interact with the candidate? (25 words)

Letter of Reference Questions

  1. How does your organization measure success for someone in this candidate’s role? How does the candidate perform relative to these measures?
  2. Tuck students are smart. Please comment on the candidate’s intellectual ability and her/his response when encountering the limits of that ability.
  3. Tuck students are nice. Please comment on how the candidate interacts with others including when the interaction is difficult or challenging.
  4. Tuck students are accomplished. Please comment on the candidate’s impact on your organization’s results and the behaviors that made these results possible.
  5. Tuck students are aware. Please comment on the candidate’s recognition of her/his growth areas and response to feedback about these growth areas.
  6. Is there anything else we should know? (Optional)

The 2018-19 application will open in mid-July. The round one application deadline is September 24, 2018.