11/6/17

Hey all,

So I went to drop-in-advising at UC Berkeley Haas (I went to Berkeley undergrad), and an admissions counselor explicitly told me Haas' MBA program prefers the GMAT to the GRE, although they do accept the GRE for some candidates. In their view, they feel the GMAT is more reflective of b-school success, particularly with the quant portion.

Does anyone know if this is true of any other t16 school? I'm not sure, but I heard UCLA Anderson also prefers GMAT over GRE. Most other schools say they weigh the GRE and GMAT equally on their websites, but there could be more that meets the eye.

I'm personally planning to take the GRE over the GMAT, so I'm looking at schools to rule out, like Haas.

Thanks.

Comments (16)

11/1/17

Honestly, they all prefer the GMAT, because it's harder. If you could get the equivalent score on your GMAT that you got on your GRE, then why wouldn't you?

I think you should only apply with GRE with a high GPA. Basically, your raw intellect won't be a question and you won't bring down their stats.

Accepted.com
11/1/17

Honest answer? I have a good GPA (3.8) in English from Berkeley.

Also I took a GRE cold and scored high on verbal and shitty on quant (163V bc of my liberal arts background, and like 152Q). If I relearn high school math, I'm positive I can get quant up to a 164 or higher.

Meanwhile, I took a cold GMAT, and got utterly decimated on math. I also did worse on GMAT verbal bc it's less reading comprehension and vocab based (my strong point). GMAT math was way harder for me, so it'd take a longer time to get that up to speed vs GRE.

The calculator on screen for the GRE helps me. So from a pure efficiency standpoint, it'll be a lot easier for me to get high scores on the GRE than on the GMAT, although maybe I could score well on the GMAT with like 2x effort.

Array

11/1/17

And this answer is WHY b-schools prefer the GMAT. Because it's harder in the subjects that most business school curriculum is based on - it's a better indicator in your performance in a program with quant based classes. Some schools are upfront about their preference for the GMAT, but they all prefer it. Why? Besides the fact that it's harder, it's also a known recruiting tool for certain jobs (notably MBB). B-schools care about their placement stats, and if you're going to be hindered in recruiting because you don't have a gmat score, that has a potential to hurt them. Also, b-schools don't report GRE ranges but they do report GMAT ranges. Basically, a high GRE can't really help you the same way a high GMAT can. But, that said, if you're not going to do well on the GMAT, don't do it. but if you need to show b-schools that you're not going to fail out of your core classes because you can't do stats and calc. I recommend taking a quant class at your closest university to offset this given you didn't do quant in undergrad. You have to relearn high school math to do well in business school, so there's not a lot of harm getting that started.

Also, I hear Haas is really unfriendly to alumni, so it may be wise to rule them out anyway

11/1/17

Fair enough. Do you think I should just suck it up and take the GMAT instead? I scored a 2280 on my SAT in high school, so it's not like I'm hopeless at that level of math. I just forgot it all, but I guess I could relearn it.

Array

11/1/17

I honestly don't know. I was a low GPA candidate (math major) so I had an opposite set of issues and it was very important for me to score high on the GMAT, so it was the first thing I did before I formulated my strategy. Like I knew that if I scored, say, a 720 I couldn't even dream about schools like Wharton or Sloan. However, for you I think 710ish is more than sufficient. I think it might be wise to talk to a consultant briefly. Most of them do free 30 minute chats before they charge you. You can go through your situation in a little more detail and they can give you some advice.

That said, if you haven't taken a high level math class since high school, you don't do any math or analysis at your job, and you take the easier-on-quant test (you know, the one with the calculator), I would think you should really find a way to take a quant course in extended ed or you're only creating unnecessary doubt in your profile.

11/1/17

Thanks for the info, little-monkey! You rock -- your advice is immensely helpful. I'll chat up a consultant briefly for sure.

You say a 710ish for me would be more than sufficient for a 3.8 GPA. Now, say I pulled that off with a non-shit quant score. Would you still recommend I take a quant course at a local university? Or is that only if I take the GRE over the GMAT?

Array

11/1/17

Ehhh, this is where I think a consultant would be helpful. You said T16, but it makes a difference if you're applying T5, 5-10, or 10-16. I'm currently hearing back on interviews and I'm doing pretty ok so far. I applied all T10 and so far I have interviews at Haas and Wharton, a ding at HBS, and waiting on GSB and Sloan. I did a lottttttttttt of MBA strategy reading, and a bunch of consultant calls, but didn't end up hiring one.

11/6/17

Would it be imprudent to ask how you did on the GMAT? I'm just curious what gmat score range you would view as sufficient for someone without a high GPA to have success in progressing through the admission process. You mention that you applied to all T10 and have been making it to the interview stage at some of the places.

"Successful investing is anticipating the anticipation of others". - John Maynard Keynes

11/6/17

My GMAT was 750 (50Q, 42V). I went to a decent semi target and I doubled majored in econ and math - the majority of my low grades were in very high level math classes, but I had A's in Calc I, Calc II, Micoecon, stats, etc. Like, anything that would come up in an MBA classroom

11/6/17

That's a solid score, congrats. I was just wondering because I am currently studying for the GMAT and have one program in particular that I'd like to go to. My thought all along has been that I probably wouldn't even apply if I didn't score at or above the class median GMAT at this particular school (one of the Ivys). The reason being is that I went to a non-target and had a decent, but not stellar, GPA (3.7) in Finance and an unrelated minor. I think my chances of admission would be much lower without a strong GMAT. Unless I'm mistaken.

"Successful investing is anticipating the anticipation of others". - John Maynard Keynes

11/6/17

Your GPA is fine. That's median at top 3 schools and above median at all other schools. Focus on your work experience/essays

11/2/17
little-monkey:

And this answer is WHY b-schools prefer the GMAT. Because it's harder in the subjects that most business school curriculum is based on - it's a better indicator in your performance in a program with quant based classes. Some schools are upfront about their preference for the GMAT, but they all prefer it. Why? Besides the fact that it's harder, it's also a known recruiting tool for certain jobs (notably MBB). B-schools care about their placement stats, and if you're going to be hindered in recruiting because you don't have a gmat score, that has a potential to hurt them. Also, b-schools don't report GRE ranges but they do report GMAT ranges. Basically, a high GRE can't really help you the same way a high GMAT can. But, that said, if you're not going to do well on the GMAT, don't do it. but if you need to show b-schools that you're not going to fail out of your core classes because you can't do stats and calc. I recommend taking a quant class at your closest university to offset this given you didn't do quant in undergrad. You have to relearn high school math to do well in business school, so there's not a lot of harm getting that started.

Also, I hear Haas is really unfriendly to alumni, so it may be wise to rule them out anyway

Do any employers (other than MBB/Consulting) care about your test scores in recruiting? From what I've learned on these forums, banks/IB certainly don't care. I don't think corporate jobs ask for gmat scores either. So it only matters if you're for consulting right?

11/2/17

I think some big tech programs might, but I'm not 100% sure.

Best Response
11/6/17

Study hard and take the GMAT, all of the schools prefer it - because it's part of the methodology to rank business schools (average gmat score...) You took it cold? No wonder you scored badly, unless you somehow have an eidetic memory for junior high school geometry.

11/6/17

I know everyone says that but... US News ranking Methodology: "Mean GMAT and GRE scores (0.1625): This is the average GMAT score and average GRE quantitative and verbal scores of full-time MBA students entering in fall 2016. U.S. News uses both GMAT and GRE scores in the ranking model for MBA programs that reported both scores. Using the GRE scores allows U.S. News to take into account the admissions test scores of the entire entering full-time MBA class."

Some schools report GRE scores and some don't.

https://www.usnews.com/education/best-graduate-sch...

11/6/17

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