Applications for full-time two-year MBA courses fell in most US business schools last year, according to the latest figures from the Graduate Management Admission Council, the owner and administrator of the GMAT admission exam.
In the US, 53 per cent of schools running full-time two-year MBA courses reported a decline in application numbers in 2016, while 40 per cent reported growth.
Meanwhile, the percentage of business schools worldwide reporting growth in applications declined for a third straight year, from 61 per cent in 2014 to 57 per cent in 2015 to 43 per cent this year.
Smaller courses tended to be worst hit while those with larger student intakes experienced growth.
However part-time MBA courses continue to struggle to raise demand, according to the GMAC figures, with just 43 per cent of these programmes reporting a rise in applications compared with half reporting a decline in volumes.
But he added that the increasing number of tailored business qualifications, such as the master in data analytics degree, meant that there was a more “mixed picture” in terms of demand for specific business schools.