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Business schools around the world these days accept GRE scores too for MBA admissions. Around 90% B-schools in the US and Europe acknowledge GRE test-takers. Consequently, the exam has been gaining popularity among many MBA aspirants in recent years.

However, the majority of business schools accept both GMAT and GRE scores for admission. In a 2015 survey on business schools and their exam preferences, it was reported that 74% of these schools view these examinations equally. Among the business schools that had no specific preferences on these test scores were Harvard Business School, Yale School of Management, and Stanford Graduate School of Business. And this percentage has been rising in these past few years.

But does GRE really assess skills that b-schools require? Let’s explore!

GRE Scores for MBA programs – Explained

Even if you decide to submit GRE scores, it is not easy to get into the top business schools that offer excellent MBA programs. First, you will need to have a high score in both quant and verbal sections of the examination. And remember to take notice that admissions committee does not view all parts of the exam equally.

The GRE Examination consists of three major parts. They are:

  1. Quantitative Reasoning
  2. Verbal Reasoning
  3. Analytical Writing

Quantitative and Verbal Reasoning have scores ranging from 130-170 in one-point increments, whereas scores for Analytical Writing range from 0-6, in half-point increments.

Out of the three parts, Quantitative Reasoning plays a more significant role than the other two parts because this part of the test correlates to what you will be learning in the MBA program. But this fact does not mean that you will have to ignore the other two parts. Verbal Reasoning might not be as crucial as the Quantitative part, but it is wise to perform well in this section as you may not want it to bring down your cumulative score. And for Analytical Writing, many business schools view it to be a non-essential component.

According to a survey conducted on MBA aspirants who took the GRE test between 2012 and 2015, the participants had an average score of 153 for Quantitative Reasoning, 150 for Verbal Reasoning, and 3.5 for Analytical Writing. However, these scores do not imply that it will help you find a suitable business school. It only gives you an idea about the preferable results you need to be aiming for during the admission process.

Below is a list of business schools with their average scores for each part of the GRE test. US News and World Report compiled this list for students looking to join the country’s top schools.

Business School Name Average Quantitative Score Average Verbal Score Average Analytical Writing Score
Stanford University 164 164 4.8
Northwestern University (Kellogg) 165 162 4.8
Yale University 162 164 4.7
Duke University (Fuqua) 160 160 4.1
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor (Ross) 159 162 4.5
Washington University in St. Louis (Olin) 156 159 4.5
Georgetown University (McDonough) 160 159 4.0
Indiana University (Kelley) 156 161 3.9
Vanderbilt University (Owen) 156 158 4.0
University of Notre Dame (Mendoza) 156 158 4.1
University of Illinois—Urbana- Champaign 154 158 4.0
University of Maryland—College Park (Smith) 154 158 4.1

If you want to arrive at a target GRE score to join your favorite B-school, it would be a good idea to go through its website for average GRE score of the current class. Being an international student, you may want to add +5 to the figure and aim to get it. That in addition to sound application essays and a decent academic and extracurricular profile will increase your chances of admission to your dream MBA program.

Final thoughts

The popularity and approval for GRE scores in MBA admissions have been on the rise for quite some time now. These scores are now globally accepted and viewed by many top-ranked business schools. But the real question is whether these scores put you at a disadvantage when compared to GMAT score acceptance. The answer is a definite NO, and it does not affect the results or preferences for joining a business school. The vast majority of business schools accept and view both scores evenly.

Nonetheless, about 25% of the business schools prefer GMAT scores to GRE scores. If your desired school accepts only GMAT scores, you will have no choice but to take up the examination. But what if the school accepts both the scores. How will that affect the admission process?

The admission process will remain unchanged if you decide to submit GRE scores over GMAT scores. It will only have a small impact on the whole selection process. In some cases, students have already taken up the GRE test beforehand. And also, students who have scored higher in GRE than in GMAT. However, in both scenarios, it is still possible to apply to some of the top business schools and get accepted.

If you have any doubts remaining about submitting GRE scores to MBA programs, get in touch with our counselors for expert advice. Not only will they answer your queries about GRE and GMAT, but also help you with application strategy. Connect with us for a free 15-minute counseling session now!

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