Right on the heels of HBS's seemingly earth-shattering announcement of their essay questions, Columbia GSB has released its essay questions and deadlines for the class of 2015.

Without further adieu, here's the skinny:

The deadlines are October 3rd, 2012 for early decision, and April 10th, 2013 for regular decision.  As in years past, Columbia GSB is using rolling admissions, meaning that they read (and make admissions decisions) as the applications come rolling in.  This means it behooves you to apply as early as possible, rather than waiting until the day of the deadline.  

As for essays, there is one short answer question and two required essays:

Short Answer Question: What is your post-MBA professional goal? (200 characters maximum)

Essay 1:

A) Why are you pursuing an MBA at this point in your career, and how do you plan to achieve your immediate and long term post-MBA professional goals? (Maximum 500 words)

B) Please view this video, entitled Community at Columbia. Diverse, tight-knit clusters and carefully selected learning teams are defining features of the first year at Columbia Business School. Along with more than 100 student organizations and countless events each semester, the cluster system helps to create a supportive and devoted lifelong community. Describe why you are interested in becoming a part of the Columbia community. (Maximum 250 words)  

Essay 2: 

Describe a personal experience and how it has influenced who you are today. This essay should have a personal rather than a professional focus. (Maximum 500 words)

For those playing along at home, this represents a subtle change from last year's essay questions.  The short answer is virutally identical to last year's question.  Essay 1 has been broken into two parts, the first of which is similar to last year's goals essay. The second part is brand spanking new, but looks like one of the short answers from last year.  Essay 2 is a reworded version of a question Columbia has asked for three years in a row now. 

The bottom line: Columbia seems to be taking its cue from Hollywood.  Just as the latter is doing reboots of Total Recall and Spiderman this summer (and just announced a reboot of The Mummy--for some unknown reason), all Columbia has done is repackage old material.

Be sure to check back for our analysis of how to take on the Columbia questions.