See what students say:


The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, one of the premier MBA programs in the world, is best known for its “strong finance reputation,” but the curriculum’s “strong emphasis on quantitative analysis” extends “across many disciplines, not just finance but marketing, entrepreneurship, operations, international business, real estate, etc.” as well. All areas present a “holistic program with a mix of case studies, traditional lecture formats, experiential learning opportunities, and strong co-curricular programs.”

Students brag that Wharton “provides all the resources necessary for us to succeed, and then some,” reporting that “the difficult part here is deciding between which resources— lectures, seminars, simulations, clubs, special events—one can fit into one’s schedule.” Writes one student, “The breadth and depth of the academic curriculum and the extracurricular activities is so huge that I would need at least six MBA years to experience 20 percent of it all.” A heavy workload, described as “difficult for everyone but the most brilliant to manage,” makes those choices even tougher. But what impresses students most here is the degree to which students themselves contribute to the learning experience. Wharton uses a “co-production model of learning” that “requires engagement from all participants in the Wharton community.” One MBA observes, “Students sometimes add more value than assigned readings. Students make Wharton. ‘Student-run’ is an understatement.” Another agrees, “The ‘co-production model’ is not just a buzz word; it really exists here.”

Under the Wharton pedagogic system, “classes build on each other. Professors are known to coordinate timing of discussing certain topics to ensure that the student has mastered the concept in another class.” Much work here is done in teams. To promote cooperation and reduce competitiveness, Wharton policy currently forbids grade disclosure to recruiters. Students report that the policy “fosters an environment of helping at the school.” Nondisclosure apparently has little impact on students’ motivation to work. One notes, “The school has high expectations for each admit, and the overall performance of the students rises to that expectation.”

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