New Ranking Lifts Darden to No. 3 US Business School

September 14, 2023
Darden building midday

Darden is home to the No. 3 business school in the country, as ranked by Bloomberg Businessweek. (Photo by Emily Faith Morgan, University Communications)

Bloomberg Businessweek has ranked the University of Virginia Darden School of Business as the No. 3 business school in the United States for 2023-24, the highest rank the school has ever received from the publication.

The ranking, which measures full-time Master of Business Administration programs, is up six places from last year.

Darden remains the No. 1 business school among public universities, according to Bloomberg. This latest accolade comes just seven months after the school secured the most Top 10 rankings of any business school in The Princeton Review’s annual assessment.

Bloomberg Businessweek uses input from graduating students, recent alumni and employers who recruit MBAs to determine its ranking. Compensation is the most important factor, followed by learning, networking, entrepreneurship and diversity.

‘Inside UVA’ A Podcast Hosted by Jim Ryan
‘Inside UVA’ A Podcast Hosted by Jim Ryan

The dramatic rise in the rank was driven by the school’s large gains in three of the subcategories that contribute to the overall score. Darden rose to No. 4 in compensation (up from No. 10), No. 4 in learning (up from No. 10) and No. 11 in networking (up from No. 22).

“It’s always gratifying when the positive momentum we feel here at Darden is validated by external sources,” said Darden interim dean Jeanne Liedtka. “Dean [Scott] Beardsley, who is on sabbatical at Oxford, and Darden faculty and staff have created an environment where both learning and scholarship are collaborative and mutually reinforcing – all for the benefit of students.”

Darden is known for excellence in teaching and garnered the top U.S ranking for educational experience for 10 straight years in the now-retired MBA rankings published by The Economist. Darden’s program allows students to shape their own journeys and learn from each other, confronting practical business problems while guided by faculty.

Bloomberg Businessweek noted that the school’s high score on its learning index “is supported by comments from students, who remarked on the ‘great professors and academic environment’ and the ‘focus on the actual quality of the educational instruction.’”

In addition to metrics, the new ranking includes a qualitative section with students and alumni sharing “what’s best” about the MBA program.

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