GMAT/GRE Waiver Guide

GMAT GRE waiver

If you are planning to apply to business school or have already began the process, one admissions requirement you will come across for many MBA/MS programs is the GMAT/GRE requirement. The Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) and Graduate Records Examinations Test (GRE) have been a standard requirement for admissions to MBA programs, however many prospective applicants are finding ways to bypass this time-consuming and costly requirement at MBA programs that offer GMAT waivers. A recent trend among MBA programs has been to waive the GMAT/GRE for exceptional work experience, which has increased the opportunity for prospective applicants seeking to pursue an MBA.

What is a GMAT/GRE Waiver?

A GMAT waiver is offered to prospective applicants who meet other admissions requirements including exceptional work experience and/or military experience. This allows students to apply without submitting their GMAT/GRE scores for admission. The alternative work experience and military experience requirements allow MBA programs to maintain a high-quality caliber of students while also increasing the opportunity for students seeking admittance without taking the GMAT/GRE.

If you are a student seeking to apply to business schools that offer GMAT waivers, it is important to understand what the GMAT/GRE measure to quantify the quality of a student so that you can differentiate yourself during the application process. To learn more about the GMAT, click on our No GMAT/GRE Guide to learn more about the test.

Do You Need to Take the GMAT/GRE to Earn an MBA?

The short answer is no. However, there are MBA programs that still require the GMAT/GRE for admissions.  To better understand the three general admissions criteria related to the GMAT/GRE requirement, we broke MBA programs into three categories:

  1. MBA Programs that DO require the GMAT/GRE:

    These programs require the GMAT/GRE under all circumstances and deem the test score a mandatory standard for admissions.  Unfortunately, if you are looking to bypass the time-consuming and costly process of taking the GMAT/GRE, these programs may not be suitable for you.

  2. MBA Programs that DO NOT require the GMAT/GRE:

    These programs do not require the GMAT/GRE for entry into their MBA programs. We recommend when applying to these programs that you find out what other metrics are measured for prospective applicants to ensure that your cohort is a high-caliber and will benefit your learning experience within the classroom.

  3. MBA Programs that offer GMAT/GRE waiver:

    According to our MetroMBA school profile information and program search tool, most MBA programs offer GMAT/GRE waivers while also having key requirements to ensure that the quality and caliber of your program maintains its quality.

Can the GMAT/GRE be Waived?

Yes, the GMAT/GRE requirement to apply to graduate business education programs can be waived on a case-by-case basis for most programs.  Alternative requirements include years of work experience, the quality of your work experience and military experience.

Is the GMAT/GRE Difficult?

The difficulty of the GMAT/GRE tests depends on each individual applying to business school.  If you are still deciding on taking the GMAT/GRE, we recommend taking into consideration the following factors:

  • Do you have the time and discipline to prepare for the test? It is important that if you plan to take the GMAT or GRE that you allot enough time to be prepared for each section of the test.
  • Find a target list of schools you would like to apply to and find out what their GMAT/GRE requirements are for each program.
  • Research the GMAT and GRE to find out which test fits your strengths and which schools accept each exam. There are some programs that will only accept the GMAT and vice versa.  In terms of delivery, each exam differs slightly so it is important to factor in which test will enable you to score the highest.

Other GMAT/GRE Related Content from MetroMBA

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