Who has a better shot at getting into Harvard/Stanford/Wharton: person A (3.2 GPA/780 GMAT) or person B (3.9 GPA/700 GMAT)?

technocrat's picture
Rank: Baboon | 161

Let's say that you have two candidates with nearly identical backgrounds/profiles except for two things, UG GPA and GMAT score. Who has a better shot at getting into a top 3 B school - a 3.2/780 or a 3.9/700?

Comments (16)

Jun 13, 2018

First, it depends on the undergraduate they went to.

Lets assume non-target. Then it would be far more likely that a student with a 3.9 gpa and a 700 GMAT would get into most top B-schools. Simply because admissions officers know school's curriculum aren't terribly different, especially since they're all likely finance majors. They also like to be able to claim they admitted students from lower ranked institutions just to raise the likelihood of students from those schools applying next year. The 3.2 student would look like a slacker for not doing well at an easier school, especially since they're smart enough to get a 780.

Lets assume target. Then it would be a tie IMO since both parties have something really solid about their applications. The 3.2 student can easily make the case they just had a bad semester, or fall back on the fact that the curriculum at targets is in fact harder, and students have much higher class loads. The 3.9 student would get the benefit of having such a stellar GPA at a target, and that would make them equally likely to get in, but if you put a gun to my head on which would do better given the fact they both went to targets, I'd have to still give it to 3.9 student.

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Jul 10, 2018

Troll spotted.

Basically where you attend our undergraduate is of little importance. What matters is how you did there. That's it. If you have a great volunteer experience, solid grades, maybe some other achievements, good work experience and that GMAT.

I see dozens of people on LinkedIn who went to these schools with complete non target degrees.

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Jun 13, 2018

You couldn't be more wrong. While what you do at your UG is extremely important, where is just as important. Sure tons of non-targets, including myself, have made it to IB/other well reputable jobs, they almost certainly weren't the first choice of most recruiters.

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Jun 13, 2018

This is another example of the classic question: GMAT vs. GPA. Some people say that GPA is more important because it represents the work ethic and intelligence of someone for four consecutive years. GMAT is just one test that you take one time and people can be bad test-takers.

Other people say that GMAT is more important because it assesses your intelligence and abilities at the current moment as undergrad GPA is a measure of your intelligence from several years ago and you have matured since then. People also say that B schools don't know the difficulty of your school and the grade inflation/deflation that occurs at each school.

Like others have said, there are other factors at play like the undergrad you attended.

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Jul 6, 2018

From what I know it depends on the school. Some schools put the most value on the GMAT, while others GPA. I think HSW are more GPA focused, while one can get into places like Stern and Cornell riding the high GMAT (id say like 740-760+) alone.

Dayman?

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Jul 8, 2018
Nightman Cometh:

From what I know it depends on the school. Some schools put the most value on the GMAT, while others GPA. I think HSW are more GPA focused, while one can get into places like Stern and Cornell riding the high GMAT (id say like 740-760+) alone.

W is the biggest GMAT whore there is. H/S can take more candidates with lower GMATs as their 90%+ yields allow them to better control their average/median GMAT

Jul 9, 2018

This. Heard through a classmate of a kid at a firm where they basically have to just tell the higher-ups what school they want to go to and they get in. Apparently, the kid's GMAT was slightly under where W wanted it on the Quant side and he didn't get in.

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there" - Will Rogers

Jul 12, 2018

Assuming your GPA isn't in the shit hole, 740-760 would get you money at Stern or Cornell. Unless you're a white male.

Jul 6, 2018

"Unless you're a white male."

Looks like I'm out of luck there dude, that ship sailed over two decades ago.

Dayman?

Jul 9, 2018

Honestly it probably depends on the school and the year; you'd better believe that they view GPA and GMAT as a portfolio in addition to individual circumstances. Taking one person with a GMAT of 780 allows you to take somebody with a 680, or ~3 people with a 715, and maintain an overall average GMAT of 730. Similar with GPA. So it will partially depend on where the school is strong or weak from that perspective for the class year.

Jul 9, 2018
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