Tag: PhD

What is a good GRE score to apply for a PhD in the USA?

The land of liberty isn’t just about fried food and American football. The USA is consistently the most popular study abroad destination for students from all over the world. Wondering why? Take a look at any world university ranking list, the USA is sure to dominate it, and this is a direct reflection of the effort and investment the country puts into developing its education standards. With institutes that have a history spanning centuries, mixed with a modernized global culture, the USA is among the top in the world for technology, innovation and world-class programs!

The US takes the crown when it comes to a PhD education, they are one of the first countries in the world to adopt a new and improved PhD model. While most countries focus mainly on the research aspect, universities here take a rigorous route and emphasize on developing a professional mindset along with regular research, through continuous training. Another bonus point is that a PhD from the USA often takes longer than that from countries like the UK, meaning that you’ll have enough time to adjust as a student and develop a stronger base in your subject before you start off on your thesis. Apart from this, the international student community, scope for innovation, guaranteed TA-ships & scholarships, and the option to choose among almost 1500 universities are some of the other reasons to pick America as your PhD destination. Convinced? Now how do you go about it?

How much GRE score is required for PhD in USA?

Have you taken the GRE before?




The first step to studying abroad, whether master’s or PhD, is the GRE. This is the test of choice for almost 9 out of 10 universities in the US because it accurately assesses the potential of a student for advanced study, and a good GRE score exponentially increases your chance of admission.

This computer-based test is developed in such a way that no two students get the same questions, and it evaluates students in three sections; quantitative reasoning, verbal reasoning and analytical writing. However, the components that show up on your final GRE score are the verbal and quantitative sections. These are each scored from 130 to 170 points, so your total GRE score ranges from 260 to 340. The writing section is scored from 0-6, and while it doesn’t show up in your final score, it is often separately analysed by the admissions committee, a decent score is 5+. Now, what is a good GRE score for PhD in USA?

Most universities set the score requirement based on the program, and individual scores matter more than the overall total. For example, if you are looking to do a PhD in mathematical models or analytics, you will need to have a higher quant score, and a PhD in sociology requires a higher verbal score. The mean GRE score lies between 302-310. However, since PhD fundamentally takes the academic route, minimum GRE score for PhD in USA is slightly higher than the average, in the high 150s for each section


While the test is an important part of your application, it isn’t all of it. Universities in the US look at your profile with just as much attention. The rest of your application includes essays, letters of recommendation and statements of purpose. Apart from these, as a potential PhD candidate your academic record, projects, published research papers and work experience are often the final deciding factors.

Universities spend a lot of time and money into developing top-class research infrastructure, and they are quite cautious about who they are letting in. While you do your due diligence, make it a point to spend time on finding the right program and university for your end goal. Also, learn more about the department you’re applying to and the professors you might be working under.

At the end of the day, as a PhD student your research problem matters most, so talk about it in your SOP and essays. Specifically, try to answer the question ‘How will the PhD program from this particular department under X professor help me solve my research problem?’

Now, as a bonus section, here are 10 of the top universities in the US and their average GRE scores.

S.No University Quant Average Verbal Average
1 Massachusetts Institute of Technology 164 163
2 Stanford University 168 165
3 Georgia Technological University 161 155
4 University of Michigan Ann Arbor 162 160
5 Texas A&M University GRE requirement is waived off for 2021 And Spring 2022
6 Columbia University GRE is not required For 2021 admissions
7 University of Maryland College 160 (GRE score is optional) 154 (For Fall 2021)
8 Northwestern University 161 (Optional for Fall 2021) 154
9 University of Texas Austin 160 155
10 University of California Berkeley 161 (Not required for EECS) 155 (For 2021)

Remember, the first step is to do your best and get a decent GRE score. Next, spend enough time researching to make sure you pick the right universities and the right professors. Finally, draft outstanding SOPs and essays to compliment your previous research, work-ex and your dream PhD program. At Jamboree, we help you through every step of the way, right from GRE prep with our unique programs to admissions counselling that provides professional support in university selection and profile development.

GRE or GMAT for PhD in Management

If you’ve decided to go for the highest qualification in business – doctorate in management – the first step is to pick between the two entrance tests that most universities accept, GMAT and GRE. Picking between the two is usually pretty straightforward since your university of choice will simply tell you which one to take. But if you haven’t picked a university yet and are unsure about the differences, here’s what you need to know:

The GRE is quickly gaining ground


Usually, GMAT was the was the gold standard for business school. If you picked a Phd in management the enterance test was meant to prove you had what it took to make it through this intense and complex graduate course. But in recent years, GRE has been quickly gaining ground. More universities accept both tests as part of their admissions process now than ever before. Renowned names like Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, MIT, and INSEAD have all been added to a list of institutions that have opened doors to students with either scores. The number of business schools accepting GRE test results have shot up in recent years, which means more students are taking this entrance test over the GMAT. Most recent data shows that only a quarter of million students appeared for the GMAT while nearly 655,000 students appeared for the GRE in 2012.

How do you get a PhD in Management from Harvard?

Have you taken the GRE before?


In terms of scale, GRE is clearly ahead now. This could be due to a number of reasons but one of the most commonly held arguments is that the GRE is ‘easier’ to take. The GRE test focuses more on vocabulary than grammar. There’s less quantitative analysis and there’s no integrated reasoning section in the GRE. Historically, it was assumed students who took the GRE were not cut out for an intense business course. But David Payne, vice president and chief operating officer for College and Graduate Programs at ETS, believes otherwise. Payne says the GRE has been taken by students in far more advanced technical fields like biochemistry and physics, which means it’s more than adequate for business school.


Overall, if you’re an analytic thinker and have a good grasp on mathematical concepts, go for the GMAT. If you’re a native English speaker who prefers a more holistic approach to learning, the GRE may be better suited.

The two tests are actually pretty similar. Both the GRE and GMAT test language, reasoning, and analytical skills to make sure you’re ready for graduate school.  But for a postgraduate degree like the Phd, you may already have a university in mind where you’d like to join in faculty for academic research or teaching. The university may specify which test they prefer but if there’s no preference you could pick the one that suits you best. Good luck!

Feel free to connect with our experts for a free counseling session!

What Did the Forbes Top 50 CEOs Study?

Everyone in the world wants to change it; everyone wants to make decisions that can affect the lives of millions in a positive way. Perhaps the best way to do this is to lead one of the world’s greatest corporations. However, the road to CEO – especially at one of the world’s top 50 companies – is not always an easy or obvious one.

Looking at the statistics and facts – to determine the backgrounds of these CEOs – is a great place to start. In this piece of Jamboree Analysis, we looked at a lot of data to determine, once and for all, the correlation between collegiate degrees (both undergraduate and graduate) and success in industry leadership. We analyzed current data in detail, and validated it with a quick sweep of time shifted data to make sure that the trends held up over time.

Here are the top findings from our exclusive research:

There are other routes to the top, other than a Top Flight MBA. Yes, 20% of CEOs from the top 50 companies on the Forbes 500 have an MBA from one of the top 10 schools in the USA. But a staggering 52% have no MBA degree at all.

It is important to realize that this does not imply that the MBA degree is not a major route to becoming CEO. It is still the single most probable route, and it still does guarantee a seat in the C-Suite of a reputed company, if an MBA holder is hard working. However, many MBA grads go on to found their own companies; many go into policy; many go into teaching. The top roles in the top 50 companies, therefore, could well go to tenured, loyal, high performing employees (agnostic of background) or to experts in the field (who might not need to be MBAs from the best schools in the world).

If you’re not convinced, ask Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs, or Bill Gates. None of them ever had an MBA.

This also implies that any reputed MBA gives you a good chance of becoming one of the world’s top CEOs. The stats show that 20% of Forbes-50 CEOs have an MBA from one of the top 10 schools, but that 28% have an MBA from a school ranked outside the top 10. This confirms what we have always told our students; aim for the best schools and get in – but, even if that doesn’t happen, ensure that you get into a good MBA program abroad, and work hard, and rise in the organization. Richard Kessler did just this after his MBA stint at Darden, and nothing stood in his way!

The journey to becoming a CEO is a long one; it starts with the application, and ends at the top of the world!

Among the 52% Forbes-50 CEOs without an MBA degree, diversity is the key commonality. The CEOs who have never gone to one of the top Business Schools in the world are an eclectic bunch – they count Nuclear Engineers, Economists, Public Policy Experts and Healthcare Professionals in their ranks. This reflects the fact that experts in a given field are of great value to the largest corporations in the world, as they seek to innovate in their area of expertise to achieve the smallest tactical advantage. And this can be taken to the extreme: Ingvar Kamprad of IKEA, which has revolutionized the way the word thinks about furniture, does not even have a university degree at all! Brazil’s Petrobas has at its helm the most powerful Nuclear Engineer in the world: Maria Foster.

The reason that they succeed is because of two reasons: first, management can be learnt on the job, over a large number of years, by a very exceptional breed of employee. Secondly, many of them have attended executive education programs over the years, usually at the very top Business Schools that they did not attend earlier.

64% of the Forbes 50 CEOs have a Master’s / PhD / JD as their highest degree. This is in keeping with our observations, that a top degree abroad is very highly correlated with a successful career in the industry. It might seem that these degrees are more skewed towards Research as a life choice but, as the data shows, the top companies in the world value these professionals so hugely that they have taken over the top position in many Forbes-50 corporations.

This, of course, implies that a graduate degree abroad – of any type – is a great investment for the future; whether you are looking to make it in the world of research or in industry – or even if you have not decided yet – you will be well advised to crack the GRE, write the best application you possibly can, and master one field.

In 80%+ of the cases, the Graduate school is of a higher profile than the Undergraduate school. One common trait across all the Forbes-50 CEOs that we ranked was that there was constant improvement. Even those who completed their undergrad degrees from universities that were not very highly reputed were able to improve the profile of their grad school through hard work; clearly, this passion for excellence and improvement continued through their professional life, as they conquered fifty of the greatest board rooms in the world.

This implies that there is hope for anyone who is looking to work hard and to improve. As long as you can do what it takes to get into a good to great school at any stage of your education, you will put yourself in a position where you could one day head one of the top 50 companies on the Forbes 500.

These trends are long term trends. There is always the risk, in any analysis, that transient phenomena are taken into account. However, historical profiles of Forbes 50 CEOs show the same patterns that we have discussed above; it is clear that these findings are here to stay, and that you will be fine if you make decisions based on this data.

We hope that these insights were useful, and that it has made it easier for you to see your path towards becoming one of the top professionals in the world.

There is one key message that stands out among all these facts. No matter what, it always makes sense to invest in a graduate / undergraduate degree from a good school in the USA. The data proves that you will do well, and that you have a multitude of disciplines to choose from, that can all guarantee success.

If you would like to learn more about how to take the first step towards leading a Forbes 50 company some day, or about how you can become the Indra Nooyi of your generation, do get in touch with us! Jamboree can partner with you throughout the process of admissions abroad – from test prep to application writing and beyond. If you would like to see it for yourself, do use our website to book a sample session with our experts. All the best!