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Shifting Choices of Candidates: 2020 Application Trends Survey is Open_GMAC_Aug_5
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Shifting Choices of Candidates: 2020 Application Trends Survey is Open

By Rahul Choudaha, PhD

In 2019, half of responding Asia-Pacific programs reported year-on-year growth in total application volume, according to the GMAC Application Trends Survey. Among programs from Asia-Pacific, two in three reported growing (48%) or stable (20%) domestic application volumes in 2019, and a similar proportion reported growing (37%) or stable (32%) international application volumes. Also, the vast majority of applicants came from within the region (90%).

How are application trends likely to shift in the context of restricted global mobility and heightened economic uncertainty in 2020?

To gauge the impact of COVID-19 on the decision-making process of prospective students considering graduate management education, GMAC is tracking and reporting the survey findings. The snapshot survey findings show the regional differences in the reasons for the concerns and the considerations of alternatives due to COVID-19. For example, nearly 16 percent of prospective students based in the United States and Europe reported they were extremely concerned or very concerned as compared to 29 percent in Central & South Asia and 23 percent in East & Southeast Asia. This indicates a higher level of concern about the impact of COVID-19 among students in Asia which in turn may prompt a segment of them to consider regional or local alternatives.

In addition to gaining candidate insights, peer benchmarking information can help business schools not only adapt to the current uncertainties but also build a foundation for future strategies. One additional resource from GMAC is Application Trends Survey which aims at helping business schools gain a deeper understanding of shifting volume of applications and profile of applicants.

2020 Applicants Trends Survey is now open until September 11, and invitations were emailed in the week of July 27, 2020. Please visit to secure your invitation to participate in this confidential survey.

By participating in the research study, business schools will receive data that would help in building data-driven marketing and recruitment strategies. Participants would also gain a competitive advantage by gaining exclusive access to a Benchmark Report and an Interactive Data Research Tool to conduct customized data searches.

The comprehensive report will analyze and report several data angles related to enrollment funnel such as changes in application volume over time by programs and applicant pool demographics, including candidate gender, age, work experience, and citizenship. 

Visit to participate in GMAC 2020 Application Trends Survey.


Dr. Rahul Choudaha is Director of Industry Insights & Research Communications at GMAC in the Washington DC area. As a subject-matter expert on mobility trends, student choices, and enrolment strategies, he evangelizes trends and insights related to global graduate management education and careers on the foundations of research and intelligence. He has presented more than 150 sessions at professional conferences and has been quoted over 300 times in global publications. Follow him on LinkedIn and Twitter.


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