MBA video interview


The Video Essay is one component of the application and provides you with an additional opportunity to demonstrate what you will bring to our vibrant Kellogg community – in an interactive way. You will respond to several short video essay questions. The questions are designed to bring to life the person we have learned about on paper.

  • After submitting an application and payment, you will be able to access the video essay through your application status page. One question will be a “get to know you" icebreaker type of question. The second question will be an opportunity to describe your plans for the future and how Kellogg will help you on that journey. The other questions will be randomly generated questions that will be similar to interview questions.
  • There are practice questions that you may complete as many times as you like to get comfortable with the format and technology. The practice questions and experience will simulate the actual video essay experience, so this is meant to be a useful tool to help you feel prepared.
  • We encourage you to practice so you are comfortable with the format once it is time to complete the official questions. There is not an opportunity to re-do the answer to the official video essay questions.
  • You will have 20 seconds to think about the question and up to one minute to give your response.
  • We estimate the video essays will take 20-25 minutes to complete – which includes time for set-up and answering all the practice questions.  You will need an internet connected computer with a webcam, microphone and an updated version of Adobe Flash in order to complete the video essay.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q:    Why does Kellogg have a video essay? 

A:    Student culture is hugely important at Kellogg. So we want to meet everyone. EVERYONE. We use the video essays as additional information to the application. It is the last thing we review when reading an application. It gives us a sense of your personality and allows us to get to know you in a more personal way than we can through your essays.

Q:    What makes a good video essay? 

A:    Be yourself. We don't want scripted answers – we want to get to know you and learn something new.  Please do not try to reuse an example from an essay that might in some roundabout way answer the video essay question you are being asked (and we already read that essay, so why tell us that story again?).  Think about your answer and prepare ahead of time, but when you record your answer speak authentically – we can tell if you are reading notes! And, no need to memorize an answer to the Kellogg question… it might make you sound like a robot.

Q:    What kind of questions will you ask? 

A:   We are going to be honest about this. Really. We don't want you to stress. We will ask you one icebreaker question, with no “right answer”, to help us get to know you. Want an example? Okay. "If you could live anywhere in the world for a year, where would it be and why?" See, not so hard. The second question will be about Kellogg.  And to make this even less mysterious we are going to give you the question.  Seriously. Here it is: What path are you interested in pursuing, how will you get there, and why is this program right for you?” The other questions will be interview-type questions but still not something to worry about.  Here is an example of the type of question you will be asked, “Tell me about a time you were not going to be able to meet a deadline.  How did you handle the situation?  What was the outcome?”

Q:    Are there right or wrong answers? 

A:    No. This isn't a test. We use the video essay to gain additional information about you and get to know you in a more personal way. Don't have a perfect answer to the question? Do not panic! Answer it the best way you can and let your personality shine.

Q:    How many times can I record myself? 
A:    You can practice recording yourself as many times as you want and the practice experience (format and types of questions) will be identical to the actual experience. But, when it comes to getting your actual video essay questions, you will only have one try. So practice. We know you like to be prepared! Get comfortable with the technology. We put good practice questions out there so you won't be nervous. Have fun and do your best.

Q:    Really, I don't get a second chance

A:    Nope, sorry. This is a bit like an interview. Sometimes in an interview you are asked a question and you don't have the perfect answer, but you go ahead and give the best response you can. And, most of the time, it turns out well. That's what this is. Take a deep breath before you start and be confident in yourself and your ability to give a great answer.

Q:    How much time will I have to think of a response and how long will I have to give my answer? 

A:    You will have 20 seconds to think of your response and 60 seconds to give your answer. We suggest you practice. It will make this easier. Take 10 minutes to go through the practice questions. Answer them as if they were your real questions. The more you practice the more comfortable you will feel doing the real video essays.

Q:    What should I wear? Do I have to wear a suit? 

A: You can wear a suit if you want to; but business casual is certainly okay with us too. And really, we will only see your head and shoulders so you can wear a collared shirt and we would never know you were still in your sweatpants.

Q: Where should I record my video essay? 

A: Wherever you like – your office, kitchen, apartment, hotel room. Just make sure you pick a place where you have a good internet connection and no distractions.

Q:    What part of the application process is the video essay? How do I access the Video Essay? 

A: After submitting your application, the Video Essay will be available when you log in to your applicant status page.

Q:    How much time will I have to complete the video essays? 

A:    After submitting your application you will be given access to the Video Essay component and will have 48 hours after the application is due to complete the Video Essay. We encourage applicants to complete their Video Essay shortly after submitting the application while information is still fresh in your mind and so you don’t forget!  Also, please try not to wait for the last possible moment to record your video essay – it will feel more stressful if you are doing it at the last minute and in a rush. Block out 20-25 minutes a few days after you submit your application and complete it.

Q:    How long will this take me? 

A:    To be safe we are saying 20-25 minutes, but we think 15 if you decide not to do all the practice questions and don't have any questions on the set-up.


Possible video questions for Kellogg:

  • What possession or memento do you treasure most and why?
    • If you had an extra hour every day, what would you do with it?
    • What piece of technology could you not live without and why?
    • What word describes you best and why?
    • Tell us about the first job you ever had?
    • What’s the best book you have ever read and why?
    • When you have a problem, whom do you approach for advice and why?
    • What accomplishment are you really proud of?
    • What’s the best piece of advice you have ever received?
    • If you could witness any event..past present or future-what would it be?
    • What one interesting / fun fact would you want your future Kellogg classmates to know about you?
    • If you could teach a class on any topic. What would it be and why?
    • If you were given a chance to meet anyone, current or historical, who would you meet and why?
    • What was the most interesting class you took at University?
    • Tell us about an organization or activity in which you have dedicated significant time. Why was it meaningful to you?
    • What have anyone done good for you and how did you felt about it?
    • Tell us about the most interesting place you’ve traveled to. What did you enjoy most about it.
    • What invention during your lifetime has had the biggest impact on you and why?
    • If money was not a concern. what would you do?
    • Why did you choose your college major?
    • What is the most meaningful thing anyone has done for you in your life? X 2
    • If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
    • What food do you like? Will you be able to eat that food everyday?
    • How have you changed in the last 5 years?
    • Whom do you respect most, and why?
    • What is your favorite motto or quote, and why
    • What risk have you taken and what did you learn?
    • What impact do you have on your co-workers?
    • What inspires you?
    • What are you most passionate about?
    • What is your favorite song/artist/album?
    • What superpower you'd want and why?


Video Essay Advice

Director of Admissions Melissa Rapp provided to Clearadmit some insight into the 2019 MBA application along with some great advice on how to prepare.

Rapp recommends using your video essay as your chance to tell your story in your voice. In the video portion, you’ll answer three questions:

  1. What path are you interested in pursuing? How will you get there?
  2. Why is this program right for you?
  3. Randomly generated question about overcoming obstacles.

When answering these questions, Rapp encourages applicants to speak from the heart and to avoid repeating phrases from their written essay. You’ll have a few practice questions to help you get comfortable; then, they’ll dive straight into the official questions. Think of the video portion like an interview more than an essay.

As for the technology, the Kellogg technical team is available 24/7 with questions or concerns, though Rapp says few if any candidates struggle.