A lot of MBA applicants must have heard about the “dreaded” GMAT and would be doing everything they can to make sure they scale through the whole GMAT palaver. While some must have dug deep to really know what the mountain before them stands for, others just see it as just a hurdle they need to scale through to get to where they are going to.
Why is the GMAT important?
In summary, to show your sincerity and capability in pursuing a business school program.
The GMAT which stands for Graduate Management Admission Test is the number one on the list of requirements required by top-tier business schools. Other requirements like recommendations and essays come a distant second on the list of requirements for acceptance into the MBA program by top-tier business schools. The GMAT assesses the higher-order reasoning skills of a candidate, including quantitative, analytical writing and integrated reasoning.
Admission officers who are saddled with the job to accept worthy applicants and prospective companies who scout for international talent primarily from esteemed business school insist on GMAT scores.
What is the right GMAT score for a MBA applicant?
The truth is that there is no right GMAT score. There is no standard score that is universally accepted by all the business schools but it is very important to score very high. The higher the score the better the chances of the applicant. According to the U.S News, the highest average GMAT scores for incoming full time students in Fall 2014 in the US ranged from 732 for Stanford University to 715 for the University of California – Los Angeles (Anderson). In Europe, it ranged from 702 for London Business School to 670 in IESE Business School, University of Navarra. So like it was noted earlier, the higher the score the better.
How much does the GMAT impact acceptance?
While scoring high in GMAT is very important, it is not the only factor that would determine if an applicant would be accepted or not. It is advisable for an applicant to score 700 and above. Once an applicant can score 700 and above, he/she can heave a sigh and focus on other requirements such as recommendations and essays. Top-tier business schools even though they are very particular about the GMAT score also look out for other requirements and qualities of applicants. The more unique the better.
So while a high GMAT score improves your chances of being accepted, a low score below 600 does not do your chances much good but at the same time it does not totally diminish your chances of being accepted. So don’t give up, focus more on your strength and other requirements.