Business School Admission Requirement: GRE or GMAT?

Business School Admission Requirement: GRE or GMAT?Are you one of those aspirants of business school admission? Maybe the big question in your mind is whether to sit for the GRE or GMAT. First, get a hang of both the test formats and the skills they are designed to measure.

You can analyze next the kind of skills that would present you in your best form. Research thoroughly the admission requirements of your chosen business schools, and finally take mocks of both the tests.

That should give you an idea at the very least of the test you may probably excel in. Given below are the basics of both the tests – GRE and GMAT.

The basics of GRE

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is taken by those looking to get a master's degree in graduate schools or enroll in a business school. However, over 1,200 MBA programs worldwide now accept the GRE or GMAT scores for admission into business schools. That gives you definitely more options.

GRE is offered as a computer based test in several parts of the world and as a paper-based test where computer-based testing is not available. The test includes three sections: analytical writing, verbal reasoning and quantitative reasoning.

Its combined score will fall in the range of 260–340. So, what is a good combined score? That would be a little more than 320. It is valid for five years from the date of the examination. The total duration of GRE is three hours and 45 minutes, apart from short breaks.

The basics of GMAT

The Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) is taken by those who wish to get into a business school for postgraduate business administration programs. It is recognized by over 6,000 business and management schools across the world.

GMAT is only a computer adaptive test. Its test sections include integrated reasoning, analytical writing, verbal and quantitative. 200–800 would be its combined score. You may have to score 700 to make it to the cream of contenders. It is valid for five years from the date of the examination.

GRE vs. GMAT: pros and cons

Although several business schools have started accepting the GRE score in place of GMAT, many others have not yet broken the tradition of accepting only the latter. Say for instance, London Business School and Indian School of Business consider only GMAT score.

The GMAT is more learner-friendly; you would do well if you have a solid foundation in grammar and logic. It may sound hard but acquiring skills through practice would stand you in good stead.

GRE will be the right pick for those strong in vocabulary and logic. Compared to GMAT, Math is relatively easier in GRE to cater to a diverse section of test takers but it is not that it would be a cakewalk.

Rider on scholarships

The GMAT score carries a lot more weight than GRE, when it comes to making decisions on scholarships. However, aspirants who submit GRE scores too are eligible for scholarships.

What matters to business schools?

It is just a few years since business schools started considering GRE score for admission. Although there is no solid data as to which of the two scores is most preferred for business administration programs, most of them do accept both – good scores for that matter.

However, odds are that they would like to know most often, why you chose GRE in place of GMAT that is usually associated with business school admission. The question may hang on especially if you are a working professional with a few years of experience behind you.

What do companies really look for?

Recruiters from management consulting, investment banking and finance companies primarily look for GMAT score as a reliable pointer to one's academic excellence. The Integrated Reasoning (IR) score of GMAT is a good test of one's analytical abilities that plays a key role in the hiring process for some companies.

You may yet be unsure of matching your skill set with the test. It is best for you to register at a reputed online tutoring portal, get answers to all your questions and seek guidance.

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