Is Business School Worth It? How MBA Programs Are Revamping in 2019 | WSJ

Is Business School Worth It? How MBA Programs Are Revamping in 2019 | WSJ

(bright music) – I’m mostly looking for a flexibility, since I am a working professional. – I think the network is a huge factor. – I feel like an MBA for
me is a second chance. – [Narrator] Is an MBA worth it? It’s a question that many
prospective students, like these, are asking themselves. Until recently, getting
an MBA was considered a relatively safe bet, one likely to yield a big bump in salary. But in recent years,
applications to programs across the country are down. Why, that’s not entirely clear. Some point to the strong
economy, others to rising costs. But what is certain is
that schools are beginning to change as a result. (slow bass music) The Questrom School of
Business at Boston University, ranked 36th last year among
two year MBA programs, recently made headlines when it announced an alternative to its, roughly, $55,000 a year Residential Program. A new online MBA had a ticket price far lower than its competitors. – We plan to launch in the Fall of 2020 an MBA degree priced at 24,000 and available only online
on the edX platform. It’s an MBA degree, but the
product is completely different than what you would get in
the full time MBA, on campus. It’s a completely
different product designed for a different audience
that has different lives, different needs, so they don’t
have six years experience, they have beyond 10 years experience. They’re much more seasoned,
and the MBA allows them to advance in the career they’re in. – One of the challenges your facing, and many business schools
are facing nation wide, decline in applicants. – Yes, nation wide the
applications for MBA are down. They’ve been down at different
levels in different schools for almost five years now. – What about your school? – We were down as well, but
not as significantly as others. – How much were you down? – In the MBA we were down, this year, 18%. (bright music) – [Narrator] The school’s
dean, Susan Fournier, says, “Her MBA program was
able to fill its incoming class “with qualified students.” But, she also saw a
need for something new. I was curious was Questrom’s
current full-time students thought about this declining
interest in their degrees. – How many of you are confident
that five years from now it’ll have been worth it? – [Narrator] Meet Nari, Airian, Michael, Carolyn, Saeid and Danesh. Each of these full-time Questrom students has a different background
and a different career goal, but they’re all confident
that their MBA degree will help them take their
careers to the next level. – Do you ever have moments
when you ask yourself, is it worth it? – Yes I do.
– Saeid, you do? – Yeah, it’s because the
opportunity cost for me is really high. – You’re a doctor. – Yeah, I had those moments,
but when I sit in a class and I hear some new
concepts, some new lessons, and it’s like eye opening
to me, wow, this is what this happen to us, or this
what, this is happening. I just say, this is the
right time to be here, this is the right place for you. – Carolyn, you’ve never questioned whether it’s worth it or not? – When I hear conversations like this, I think a lot of it depends
on where you were before, and it sounds like some
people were really in a job that they really saw themselves in and felt deeply entrenched. For me I really wanted a big change, and I didn’t know what
that change would be, so I feel like I was the
perfect person to leave and be excited about being
here to reset and relearn. – [Narrator] Today, Questrom also offers a variety of specialized MBAs. There’s the Social Impact MBA, the MBA plus MS in Digital Technology, and the Health Sector MBA. – Half way through my undergraduate
degree in biochemistry I realized I didn’t wanna
do the academic thing, but I did wanna make an impact in the health sector in life sciences, and so I thought, the
best way of doing that was to kind of, follow the money. – As an engineer, you’re
limited in your career choices. As an engineer MBA, the door opens. And so now I have the technical expertise and I know how it translates
into the dollar math. – Have you all heard
about the online program that BU just announced? You know it’s not gonna cost quite as much as what you’re paying for here
at the residential program? Do you feel like, if
that was offered to you as an alternative, would you have said, I’m gonna stay at home, save some money. – I was considering going
to an online program when I was applying, but decided against it for a few reasons. One is, definitely the experience. You get to actually meet people. (laughs) It’s a huge part of the value
that I saw in the degree. – When they start offering MBAs to people through an online program,
does that dilute the value of your degree? – It’s something I’m concerned about, but having a more specialized degree, having it specifically in health sector, I think it helps me a little bit more. – You’re here because you wanna get more than just the education out of it, and that’s the biggest thing
that sets the regular MBA from the online MBA part. – Really ask yourself, what
would enable me to pick– – In terms of academic
knowledge that one gains through a residential
program, the two year program, can you get all that in an online program? – You won’t get the ability
to go deep and to specialize. – Can you learn leadership
in an online course? – Yes.
– You can? – Yes, but you can’t
go as deep as you might if you took a whole other year and took nothing but leadership courses. – Is this a good time to be
a dean of a business school? – It’s really a test for
how to manage a business. – This is a business. – It is a business, and you
know, we provide products that meet people’s needs
and the market is very, it’s very dynamic. – By dynamic you mean there’s
less demand for it now? – No, dynamic meaning it’s evolving a lot. It’s challenged in some ways. There are some cultural trends
that challenge business, overall, challenge higher ed,
so you really have to know the astute business analysis of your case. I’d say 50 years ago, you
know, you had two products, an undergrad, an MBA, you were good to go. Some schools today have one product. We have 10 products, because
the market is very complex.


  1. Rachana Dinakar says:

    It's a business and it's their products how can she say it with such a straight face tbh!!

  2. aFreshPineapple aFrT says:

    This feels like a very bad advertisement.

  3. Joanne C. says:

    Honestly, you'll learn more about businesses by just studying accounting and being a CPA alone, but people need jobs and businesses value the MBA. What can you do? You just need to get those three letters behind your name to get a job. I guess you're going for it for the recognition but not really for the knowledge.

  4. Jaybriel Akoi says:

    Meh, it’s a money making organization. The only thing that matters is that you get a job.

  5. Zac Orr says:

    Very good video.

  6. untouchable360x says:

    You can get a free online education on youtube for free.

  7. Andrew Lee says:

    5:01 that guys name placard def came from the bottom of his bag ?

  8. JB Smoov says:

    AI join the chat

  9. Kunal Ketkar says:

    This video is absolutely ridiculous

  10. Michael says:

    unlesss its top 10 schools mba garbage degree. dont waste ur money and most importantly TIME

  11. Naqsh Garg says:

    The whole idea of MBA is networking and your skills to speak/convince others/Brainstorm in presence of others

    MBA is worthy only for those who wants to stay in corporate for many years,

    For learning there is enough free content and atleast 50 books which replaces MBA curriculam

  12. Ryan Kelly says:

    An MBA goes as far as what school it came from. Unless you go to a top 20 university, the return on investment is statistically not producing worthwhile ROI’s.
    There is little difference in content across all MBA programs. Thus, you’re paying for the opportunity to “network” with a community of people that have connections most ppl can’t obtain

  13. v.krishnan kaushik says:

    Top 20 b schools of a particular country should be the priority rather top 10.
    Top 10 in China, India, UK, US.
    It's all worth it.
    The investment is different across different countries.
    If you take x amount of loan and you can repay it in next 2 years since the time of getting placed then you are doing good.
    Further if you stop learning new trends then there is no use of MBA at all, as it's just a enabler.

  14. Avishek Bhandari says:

    PRODUCTS wow

  15. Gabe Beita-Kiser says:

    Anyone else think that universities viewing themselves as businesses that offer products is a problem?

  16. Ameya Kasture says:

    It all boils down to the job prospects. Having an MBA degree is not a necessity for starting a business and if one seeks a job then MBA degree acts as an add-on degree to base qualification. For an employer, experience will always come first and MBA would then make a bigger impact. Book formula doesn't necessarily translates well in real life. When degrees are on sale, and most have it, experience makes all the difference. As the lady in the video rightly said "it's all business" and irrespective of what happens to those students, the University is doing good business and most will live below their means to cover the expenses!

  17. Luke Irvine says:

  18. Duzie Uche-Abba says:

    This Dean kept on mentioning “markets” and “products”. Universities now see education as a bundle of products, sadly.

  19. Adam Bernard says:

    As a graduate of a business school in Canada (top 5), and having majored in accounting (a very useful area of specialization, as opposed to a lot of floofy majors), I can attest to how helpful it has been for me. However, I see a lot of strangely marketed and titled business degrees that I would not touch with a 10 foot pole.

  20. Tonixxy says:

    On my country we use Management/Business degrees to get a government job.

  21. Kumar Ankur says:

    Really skeptical about online MBA as it lacks networking and ambience while knowledge we can get it anywhere in this digital world. As far as MBA as overall is concerned, I believe it isn't meeting industry requirements rather will make you – Jack of all trade. Hence, be cautious while going for any MBA degree.


    The quality of graduates entering the workforce market has been an issue!
    BBA / MBA is a professional qualification!! NOT AN ACADEMIC DEGREE like MA / MSc etc.
    Hence, too many inexperienced people without a CV would like to get the MBA Badge.
    During the 1980s and the 1990s, the American and some other global institutions were churning out MBAs like confectionery products.
    Remember most of the European and even UK universities did not offer an MBA up to the late eighties and going right into the 1990s. LBS London Business School and LSE (Trium program) only joined the MBA market at a very late stage in the UK.
    So, what we today have is an excess supply to demand problem in the labor market segment for business graduates. Other universities offering degrees in Business and Management Sciences did catch up during the 1990s in the EU / UK/ ASIA /CANADA making matters worse!
    What do we learn in an MBA program, especially the one-year type/s? =>
    Most of the MBAs mostly focus on apply projects, PowerPoint presentations, essay-style report writings, and case studies.
    Now, how helpful is a case study embedded curriculum? NOT MUCH!
    I don't think an MBA will be able to outsmart actuarial science, financial engineering, data sciences, operations research, or econometrics graduates in technical terms.

  23. Shubham Bubna says:

    It is a business after all!

  24. Luis YL says:

    I will read 52 books a year (and postponed my MBA plan)

  25. Roy Williams says:

    enrolement is down because of youtube…………….!

  26. JJ F says:

    The woman in the beginning referred to the 24k MBA as “the product”. There in lies the problem with higher education, it’s become a “product”. College is money scam.

  27. Ric419 says:

    At least she was honest, "it's a business," which is all higher education is today. To make matters worse, it's only worth something if it's from a top tier school.

  28. 이은굥 says:

    I go mba

  29. Valentin Islas says:

    Grad school is NOT worth it! There you go, question answered.

  30. pikachu _dead says:


  31. Pallab Saha says:

    So these people shell out 55K just to meet people…..!!!!.

  32. Shijil Kumar says:

    Let's face it, we can get all these informations for free on YouTube and Google nowadays ?

  33. Jose Rodriguez says:

    I didn't pay for my MBA. Get somebody else to pay for it. If you pay for it, then you shouldn't get an MBA.

  34. Meghana Reddy says:

    I want to do mba , what's your suggestion .

  35. Alan says:

    It’s really quite simple. Over time more and more people are realizing that to be successful in business, for example to own your own successful startup wether it be in tech, fashion, food, etc, you really don’t need an MBA and in many instances it actually saddles you in tremendous debt and damages you. Combine that with the rising costs of high education and you see why the numbers are declining.

  36. Mark T. says:

    These students don’t seem confident and assured at all. They’re going to be in deep debt by the time they graduate.

  37. Ahmad Mozaffar says:

    Everything related to school or university is just sort of wasting time and energy and don’t worth anything
    Learning and science are existing in books and online courses
    Why to wait tell to become in 20s to be able to study what you are passionate about and study exactly the same info between thousands of students
    Don’t wait get the right books even if you are 15 years old and start learning

  38. Ammar Siddiqui says:

    If it isn't Wharton, Kellogg, HBS, Haas, or another ivy league/Oxbridge business school, it's not worth the debt.

  39. aleterra says:

    you can get the same knowledge in an udemy course for 15 bucks.

  40. Andrewca1 says:

    Learn a skill of an MBA—financial management, accounting, etc. You don’t need to go into debt and get a fancy degree. It will possibly get you in the door but you’ll be a jack of all trades and a master of none.

    I regret spending the money on an advanced degree. YouTube and community college we’re more helpful.

  41. Navey Gill says:

    You go get an MBA for the network & connections, not the material itself. So if you can make a top 50 school then good. Otherwise don't bother.

  42. Moel Arthur141 says:

    "If I did the online course I wouldn't meet people"… That's what networking events are for.
    Ahhh the rat race

  43. C. B. says:

    The cost is too high. I don't want to have to get a MBA through my job and be stuck there. I want to be able to just afford an MBA on my own.

  44. MOHAMMAD USAMA says:

    Every degree degree is worthy it's all depends on u!

  45. Akshay Manglani says:

    Thats wrong. People are not applying to MBA’s as much because students are not introduced to business at the undergraduate level because there are a very few undergraduate business schools.

  46. toady says:

    $55,000 a year, and the professors are still using blackboards and screechy chalk.

  47. John Yu says:

    There's also a trend in which some schools are adding the MBA as a dual degree option. Some of them are like the JD/MBA or MEd/MBA. It's making the MBA a secondary degree as opposed to one that someone would focus 2 years on.

  48. Nachi Sharma says:

    When people use terms like products for what is essentially education…

  49. Hieu Thai says:

    What a worthless degree

  50. MANSOOR AHMAD says:

    I believe universities will be obsolete in coming years.

  51. indyslimshady says:

    Online MBA = stupid idea!

  52. Andrew 19 says:

    Went to a community college and university that offered online and lecture type courses. I decided to sign up for all my classes online instead of lecture since I learn better at my own pace. What I'm explaining is that just because I was online for 3 semesters didn't mean campus was prohibited to visit. I could show up to campus and still make connections with groups and guest leaders any day. Online courses are more flexible to people working full time and trying to earn an education.

  53. carlos RL says:

    This is why electrical technicians or constructions small company owners are making millions laughing on the phds and MBas…
    Infinite millenial students that when they get to the real world are weak and limited mentally to create and grow in a capitalism world

  54. akash anil says:

    The only benefit of MBA is networking. You kill that with your online course.
    And you expect us to pay 24k for knowledge I could gain at $200

  55. WL G says:

    All because of Rich Dad Poor Dad fault. Hahaha. Fake teacher fake school fake knowledge. Tax is our biggest expenses but school dont teach us about taxes.

  56. MJ Lee says:

    It’s just access to the network and schools recruiting platform… other than that I hear they just travel and get wasted… fun but expensive

  57. Louis Williams says:

    MBA’s are for conformists who enjoy jargon and patting each other on the back. Phony!

  58. elgooges says:

    Definitely not! Young people should be avoiding college all together because of high tuition costs and the over emphasis on sports and marketing.

  59. Enzo Trovato says:

    I will never understand how young people enslave themselves in the US by taking a massive financial burden just to maybe be able to do the same thing I am doing at the moment. I graduated in Germany, spent a total of roughly 3000 euros (just tuition) over 4 years and now I'm working at a DAX30 company and I can pay off this loan in just 2 years earning 60000 euros a year…

  60. Jae Oppa says:

    interesting change…

  61. Vaibhav Kapoor says:

    You all should read starting 30 pages of personal mba book
    It explains how teaching mba is just a business.
    Business can be learned by many other and better wayd

  62. mark markovic says:

    MBA is a mean trick

  63. Emanuel Fernán says:

    Never hire an MBA its a secret dunce hat.

  64. pimpballer3 says:

    You can meet people without paying 100k

  65. Ryan Morrie says:

    I'm currently in a tier 2 MBA program. My company is picking up the tab…

    Otherwise, I wouldn't be doing it. However, I do believe it can be very beneficial for stem undergrads. Having a technical background with an MBA is gold. Unfortunately I majored in accounting.

  66. Mark Collins says:

    What if your MBA is free?

  67. Alex Benanti says:

    Unless you’re going to a top MBA program it’s not worth it. You’re better off going to graduate school for something in STEM, you’ll differentiate yourself substantially as well as having many more job opportunities. Professional degrees IMO are just a way of pidgeon-holing yourself (unless it’s 110% what you want to do). Meanwhile, someone with a degree in computer science can be hired onto wall street if they so choose (although it is undeniably at least a little harder to get employed on Wall Street than a standard finance major). There are way too many business majors right now, though. Your best bet is majoring in computer science (or some other STEM field) if you want the real bang for your buck from college.

  68. rocksta71 says:

    Online degree is a product…
    Full time is a degree.. but obviously from a good college.

  69. helin deelaka says:

    This journalist is on fire ?. What an interview!

  70. Sue Tina says:

    You just say decline but shows no figure and the trend percentage. any problems, truth is very little decline, tell us the full story please, I got to read guardian

  71. djaslee says:

    Business in general doesn’t require schooling. Everything can be done and learned from home

  72. Adhy Nugroho says:

    Don't how it works in the US, but an MBA is still highly valuable and sought after in developing countries.

  73. xamael1989 says:

    Another worthless degree an MBA is just nonsense

  74. Tronic Basez says:

    How about master in engineering (like CS, Electronic, and on…)

  75. H. Anthony Ribadeneira says:

    …leaders are made in classrooms…..

  76. hell morons says:

    an mba is really worth it when you are pursuing it from top ivy league schools.

  77. abdullah shafi says:

    I know people who sell waste and these people will never earn as much as him, what's the use??????

  78. omegaboostZ says:

    bought a complete MBA online from Chris Haroun on udemy for roughly $12. It was absolutely amazing and definitely worth far more than what I paid for. I don't know what a real MBA would actually add more in terms of knowledge to justify the $23,988 price difference.

  79. Mau G says:

    Put 3* years in building your own business. Even if you fail, it's REAL EXPERIENCE. (*2 for MBA, 1 year getting in & out of it)

  80. Mau G says:

    The DEAN talk is sooooo……Management type

  81. Z B says:

    BS, I have spoken to people getting MBAs. It is all about networking, this is the "deep" aspect of the degree she is talking about

  82. alpha sow says:

    Everything in an MBA program can be found online, online learning platforms such as Coursera and youtube. Such a ripp off

  83. Victor Hugo says:

    I totally regret studying in brick and mortar and incurring 400k in student loans, HR people attribute no difference between the degree free online or if you spent 6 or 7 years actually attending physical human taught classes at a 45k per year private university supposedly ranked top 100.

  84. destiny pictures says:

    I want to do mba

  85. Gerardo Gonzalez says:

    Hello everyone,

    I want to get peoples opinion on my future. I’m 21 year old male who’s about to graduate college. I recently was offered a graduate assistantship at my university with a full tuition waiver. My assistantship is working for the administration, handling the database for admissions. The program I would pursue would be a dual degree: MBA plus MS in business analytics. If I take summer courses it will be about a year and half to finish it. Is this a good deal? I know experience is important so I would work my graduate assistantship and get more internship during the summer. I already did one internship for HRIS implementation.

  86. JD says:

    Here you can see the real difference between a regular youtuber and a real journalist ?

  87. Aris mu says:

    Its only for networking. Nothing more!

  88. Jamie Lancaster says:

    It’s smarter to just get a law degree.

  89. Aryan Sultan Khan says:

    The question is why are people not choosing to enroll in an MBA program anymore? What has changed?

  90. Umber99 says:

    Kudos to the journalist for pushing and probing.

  91. Johnny Hsieh says:

    Undergrad business grads learned absolutely nothing from MBA, learn the same models and concepts at 10 times the fees Porters five forces, Boston consulting matrix ect. Want a overhyped substandard generalist business degree go for MBA

  92. xxyanlixx says:

    I thought this interviewer was condescending in the beginning but his burning questions are actually very enticing for the audience. Good job well done

  93. mp5cartman says:

    School of BiDness

  94. strategist s says:


  95. Fundi Nkuta says:

    @5:22 good follow up question about “dynamic”. Corporate speak thrives of ambiguity

  96. fredocorleone says:

    I went to a 2nd tier MBA school. My MBA dean said they were probably going to bump up the tuition in a few years by 30% back in 2013. I told him that the reason I chose the school was because it was cheap. They also eliminated some of the elective classes. My MBA total tuition was only $22,000. Most MBA schools will charge you at least $60,000+ now. With grad school loans at 6.8%, MBAs have become too expensive now.

  97. Shivansh Verma says:

    What? So is an MBA worth it?

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