MBA Admissions: GMAT or GRE?

MBA Admissions: GMAT or GRE?

Kaplan announced last week the results of a survey showing that only 16% of business school applicants even considered taking the GRE despite the fact that most business school say they will accept either the GRE or the GMAT. Kaplan assumes that the real issue is ignorance of the many, many programs that accept the GRE.

However, a different issue caught my eye in the press release: “According to a separate Kaplan survey of business school admissions officers, applicants who submit a GMAT score have a slight admissions advantage over applicants who submit a GRE score.”

Whoa! Depending on how big is “slight,” an admissions advantage would be a reason to take the GMAT over the GRE, assuming one could earn equivalent percentile scores on both exams.

I actually commented on this Kaplan survey and press release in my G+ page the day it came out, but to me the line about admission directors not viewing the exams as equivalent makes the two tests not equivalent. If you can do well on the GMAT and are applying to highly competitive schools, go for the gold, which still appears to be the GMAT. If you are struggling with the GMAT, feel you will do better on a percentile basis on the GRE, and you double check that the schools you are interested in accept the GRE, then you may be better off taking the GRE, especially if your grades are good.

Linda AbrahamBy , President and Founder of, co-author of MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools.



Linda Abraham is the founder and president of, which she founded in 1994.