Loyola Business Blog

GMAT vs GRE: which entrance exam should you take?

The entrance exam is an important component to the pre-application process for business school. Poets & Quants advises planning as early as two years in advance to allow time to take a GMAT prep course and strengthen your quantitative background. However, the GMAT is not the only option. The Princeton Review reports more than 1,200 MBA programs accept both GMAT and GRE scores.

GRE vs GMAT: which exam does Sellinger accept?
When considering GRE vs GMAT, be sure to research the 
MBA admissions requirements of the business schools you’re applying to, so you know which exams are accepted. The Sellinger School of Business requires part-time MBA and full-time one-year MBA applicants to submit a GMAT score, but accepts a GRE score in place of a GMAT score from applicants who have already taken the GRE (August 2011 and later). Under certain conditions, Sellinger may waive the GMAT or GRE requirement for some applicants.

GMAT vs GRE: how do they differ?
The GRE emphasizes verbal and written analytical skills, and the GMAT emphasizes quantitative skills. The Princeton Review lists a comprehensive GMAT vs GRE chart that contrasts the tests’ content and structure. The GRE is a generalized test and not geared toward a specific area of study.
U.S. News points out that the GRE offers greater flexibility because it is accepted by most graduate programs. Poets & Quants suggests this flexibility is especially helpful if you are seeking a dual degree or undecided between an MBA and another graduate degree. The GMAT is exclusively designed for business schools and widely viewed by admissions committees as a commitment to pursuing an MBA.

GMAT vs GRE: which exam do admissions committees prefer?
Admissions committees traditionally favor the GMAT, but that preference is decreasing. A 2016 Kaplan survey
 of 224 business schools across the United States found that 26 percent of admissions officers said applicants who submit a GMAT have an advantage over those who submit a GRE. The majority, 74 percent, said neither applicant has an advantage. Accepting GRE scores is a growing trend that opens the door to applicants with less conventional business backgrounds and encourages diversity, which according to Forbes, breeds innovation and business success.

GMAT vs GRE: which exam showcases your strengths?
Both exams are challenging and require a mastery of essential skills. If your top choice schools accept both, you might consider taking the exam with the greatest potential for a high score. For an accurate idea of what your scores will be, take full-length practice tests. Ultimately, the more familiar you are with both tests, the easier it will be to choose the right one for you.

Are waiver exams accepted?
Under certain conditions, the GMAT or GRE may be waived. Contact an admission advisor at mba@loyola.edu for more information.