Major business schools have decided against increasing fees

With applications to full-time MBA programmes declining for several years now, it might not come as a surprise that leading US-business schools have decided against increasing their fees. Harvard Business School and the Booth School of Business will hold back on raising the cost of their programmes.


High prices are one of the challenges that come with the MBA programmes of highly ranked business schools. With the interest in two-year-programmes waning and students shifting to one-year, part-time or online options, some of the most famous schools are reacting by keeping the programme prices stable. Both Chicago Booth as well as Harvard will not increase their tuition as Forbes reported in a recent article. Both schools have seen declining application numbers with Chicago Booth’s application number falling by 8.2 per cent to 4,289 for its 591 classroom seats. At Harvard Business School, applications dropped by 4.5 per cent to 9,886 for the school’s 930 seats. Harvard and Booth are not the first schools that decided to change their fee schedules. Three years ago, the Simon School of Business at Rochester University reduced its tuition by 13.6 per cent and has only had modest increases.

The schools won immediate praise for their decision not to increase fees. “I think that is a brilliant move,” Yale School of Management Dean Edward Snyder told Forbes. “It’s not because of weakness. It’s because of strength, and it’s the first school that is stepping back and saying we are not going to keep going down this path. It’s a big thing. It’s just so timely to see somebody doing that. It doesn’t indicate how the business model is going to get redone, but it is a signal that it needs to change.”

According to the US-magazine, concern that the MBA degree is overpriced has been percolating for years, with some school officials speaking up and claiming that business schools have been outpricing themselves.