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When you come across an MBA program that feels like a good match, you’re bound to have questions. What’s a good GMAT score? How high should you aim for those elite MBA colleges? Is it even worth taking the GMAT if it’s optional? And, perhaps most intriguing of all, can you unlock the gates of the best business schools with a not-so-stellar score? Let’s dive into the answers, discovering the secrets of the GMAT and its magical keys to success!

In this blog:

  1. What is a good GMAT score?
  2. GMAT Score for the Best Business Schools in the World
  3. Should I take the GMAT even though it is optional?
  4. Can you get into top B-schools with low GMAT scores?
  5. What are the benefits of taking a GMAT exam?

What is a good GMAT score?

This question frequently crosses the minds of prospective students when they interact with admissions teams or consultants. The answer, however, hinges on your chosen business schools.

For instance, prestigious institutions like the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School or the University of Chicago Booth School of Business generally set the bar higher for GMAT scores compared to schools lower down the rankings.

To make an informed decision, it’s advisable to visit your prospective school’s website and gather information about the GMAT scores they accept. One valuable metric to look for is the average GMAT score of your desired program. This number offers insights into the score range that is likely to improve your chances of admission. It also enables you to compare different business schools to identify where you have the best odds.

While examining the average scores is informative, delving deeper into a school’s GMAT score range provides a more comprehensive perspective on what’s achievable.

GMAT Score for the Best Business Schools in the World

When it comes to top-tier business schools, you might wonder about the range of GMAT scores they consider. Fortunately, you can uncover this valuable information by visiting the official website and exploring the incoming class profile for their MBA or business master’s program. Most top MBA programs readily provide this data. It’s worth noting that, among the top 10 business schools as per the 2023 Financial Times rankings.

Quirky Tidbit!

Did you know INSEAD is the ONLY one among the best business schools that does not disclose its GMAT score range!

Rank School GMAT Range Average GMAT
1 University of Pennsylvania Wharton 530-790 733
2 Columbia Business School 540-780 729
3 Harvard Business School 590-790 730*
4 INSEAD 708
5 Northwestern University: Kellogg 630-780 727
6 Northwestern University: Kellogg 630-780 727
7 Stanford Graduate School of Business 610-790 738
8 University of Chicago: Booth 590-790 732
9 London Business School 590-790 708
10 Yale School of Management 690-760 (80%) 730*
11 IESE Business School 580-750 670

Note – When we use “*”, it shows the average score of GMAT, not the average.

“(80%)” means the range we’re talking about covers the middle 80%, not the entire range.

Suggested Read: Top-Ranking Indian College Accepting GMAT Scores

Should I take the GMAT even though it is optional?

Weighing the costs and risks against possible benefits of taking the GMAT in a test-optional world!

Should I take the GMAT even though it is optional?

There will be situations where the answer is a firm “No, I won’t opt for the test.” However, in other instances, the potential advantages, such as increasing your lifetime earnings and saving substantial amounts on tuition fees, justify the associated costs and risks, which encompass spending several thousand dollars, dedicating several months to study, and no assurance of achieving your target score.

Naturally, the final decision rests with you, but the framework provided above will assist you in evaluating the merits and demerits, enabling you to formulate the most suitable plan for your unique situation. 

What are the benefits of taking a GMAT exam?

Now, let’s dive into why the GMAT exam is required and the advantages of taking the exam. The GMAT exam is a crucial part of the MBA application process because it provides business schools with a standardised measure of a candidate’s potential for success in the program. The GMAT score also lets them evaluate if a candidate can keep up with the rigours of the MBA program. Here are some of the advantages of taking the GMAT exam:

  1. Demonstrates academic ability: The GMAT exam assesses your knowledge and skills in various areas that are essential for success in an MBA program. By scoring well on the exam, you demonstrate your academic ability and show that you have the knowledge and skills necessary to excel in a rigorous academic environment.
  2. Provides a level playing field: Business schools receive applications from candidates with different academic backgrounds and experiences. The GMAT exam provides a level playing field by evaluating all candidates using the same standardised test. This allows business schools to compare candidates fairly and make informed decisions about who to admit to their MBA program.
  3. Increases your chances of acceptance: Business schools use a holistic approach to evaluate MBA applicants, considering various factors such as work experience, academic background, and personal characteristics. However, a high GMAT score can increase your chances of acceptance, as it demonstrates your academic ability and potential for success in the program.
  4. Opens up scholarship opportunities: Some business schools offer scholarships to students based on their GMAT score. A high score can increase your chances of receiving a scholarship, which can help reduce the cost of your MBA program.

Good to know!

Name Primary Campus Weighted salary (US$)
Columbia Business School US 226,359
Insead France/Singapore 198,363
Iese Business School Spain 181,270
Harvard Business School US 235,019
Stanford Graduate School of Business US 248,669

Can you get into top B-schools with low GMAT scores?

If you take a look at the GMAT scores for some of the best business schools in the world, it reveals that they do consider scores in the 500s range. For instance, the prestigious Wharton School, despite its top-ranking status, accepted applicants with a GMAT score of 530 for its current class.

Evidently, candidates with GMAT scores significantly below the class average must excel in other aspects of their application. If you’re considering applying to business school, investigating the range of accepted scores underscores the possibility of securing a spot, even if your GMAT score isn’t the most dominant facet of your application. Best of luck, and start your journey to the best business schools in the world with Jamboree – Schedule a free demonstration GMAT class.


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