GMAT & MBA Admissions: True or False?
It’s time to test your GMAT knowledge. How much do you know about this important b-school entrance exam?
1. The GMAT is one of the first elements in your application the adcoms will look at.
True. While the GMAT is not always the determining factor for admission, it can be used as a tool weed out applicants and it can influence a busy reader to read an application a little more quickly and critically. It is also sometimes used as a screening tool by elite investment banking and management consulting firms. For them, 700 is the magic number.
2. There is no way to recover from a low GMAT score.
False. It’s not easy to grab the attention of the adcom once you’ve lost it with a low GMAT, but it is possible. To do so, you’re going to need to truly blow the adcom readers away with an otherwise impeccable application. This includes writing out-of-this-world essays, creating an impressive MBA resume, presenting a flawless transcript, providing outstanding LORs, and – like it or not – having a less-than-ordinary background.
3. An above average GMAT score can win you an automatic acceptance at some business schools.
False. No business school, even those that are lower ranked programs, will look at your GMAT score at the exclusion of everything else. If you earn a perfect GMAT score, but have no work experience, were kicked out of college due to cheating, and have six DUIs, then your score alone won’t be enough to gain you a seat in any MBA program. An impressive GMAT score must always be accompanied by an impressive application. However, some schools do treat a high score favorably than others. A school working to boost its MBA rankings may be more inclined to accept students based on their high stats than others and may also be quicker to offer merit-based financial aid.
4. Schools care about both the verbal and quant scores.
True. People tend to think that top b-schools care only about the quant score of the GMAT, but this isn’t true at all. Yes, being able to compute is important, but so is being able to communicate. Your verbal score indicates your ability to read and write – you can’t really go to business school where the language of instruction is English (or at least not successfully) if you don’t have some mastery over the English language.
5. You should retake the GMAT as many times as you need until you hit your target score.
False. You SHOULD retake the GMAT two or three times, but retaking it more than five times may begin to negatively impact your application. Think of it as the law of diminishing returns for the GMAT: Putting forth effort to reach excellence is positive, until you’ve put forth so much effort that it begins to make you look bad – like a serial test-taker…or a person who keeps trying but who still can’t cut it. If after three re-tests you still don’t have the score you desire and there are no extenuating circumstances that are likely to change on the next retake, then you need to cast your school net wider to include programs that better meet your qualifications.
Continue to boost your GMAT IQ when you visit GMAT & MBA Admissions 101.