GRE v/s GMAT- Who should take which one?
Previously it was fairly straight that if you want to take an MBA degree in the US, you have to submit your GMAT scores. But in recent times, things have changed and now many American Universities have started accepting GRE scores. So, the pertinent question now becomes, what’s the primary difference, and who should take which examination? We have attempted to break it down for you – GRE vs GMAT.
GMAT- If you plan on attending business school and/or an MBA program, you should take up GMAT because most of the time, GMAT is exclusively used for securing admission to these types of programs.
GRE- The most predominant factor of difference between GRE and GMAT is that GRE is used as an entrance process for a variety of graduate school programs whereas GMAT is only used when the candidate wants to apply to business schools
- The most important score is the composite score, which can range from 200 to 800.
- The composite score takes only scores from the Verbal and Quantitative sections into account.
- There are also section-specific scores. Both the Verbal and Quantitative sections have scores ranging from 0-60, in one-point increments.
- The scoring range for Analytical Writing is 0-6, in half-point increments.
- The scoring range for the Integrated Reasoning section is 1-8, in one-point increments.
- The score range for Analytical Writing section in GRE is 0-6, in half-point increments
- Both Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning are scored the same way. Here, the scoring range is 130-170, in one-point increments.
- No composite scoring pattern is followed here. All sections are scored separately.
STRUCTURE, COST, AND VALIDITY
|Time frame||3 hours 30 minutes||3 hours 45 minutes|
|Total Number of Essays||1||2|
|Total Number of Multiple-Choice Questions||90||100|
|Total Number of Sections||4||6|
|Score Validity||5 years||5 years|
VERBAL SECTION – GMAT v/s GRE
|Total number of Verbal Sections||1||2|
|Total Number of Verbal Questions||41||40|
|Time Frame||75 minutes||60 minutes|
- Problem Solving: For this section, you will have to solve equations, interpret graphs, evaluate data, or a combination of the three.
- Data Sufficiency: These are unusual sets of quantitative problems where you’ll be given a question followed by two statements. What you have to do is decide if one, both, either, or neither statement is sufficient enough to answer the question.
- Integrated Reasoning Section: This section contains four question types: graphics interpretation, two-part analysis, table analysis, and multi-source reasoning. They basically test you on how well you can analyze and interpret data to solve complex problems.
- The majority of questions in this section of GRE are in multiple-choice format
- However, there are also several numeric entry questions where you will have to enter the correct answer without having the choices
- Also, there will able be a few multiple-choice questions which known as Quantitative Comparison questions where you will be given two quantities and you have to determine their relationship, as to larger, smaller or equal
Quantitative Reasoning- GMAT v/s GRE
|Total number of Quantitative Sections||2||2|
|Total Number of Quantitative Questions||49||40|
|Time Frame||105 minutes||60 minutes|
|Score Range||Quantitative- 0-60 Integrated Reasoning- 1-8||130-170|
Analytical Writing- GMAT v/s GRE
|Total number of Writing Sections||1||1|
|Total Number of Essays||1||2|
|Time Frame||30 minutes||60 minutes|
SHOULD YOU TAKE GMAT OR GRE?
In the end, it all comes down to this pertinent question – GRE vs GMAT – which one to choose? To answer this question, first, you will have to answer the following two questions:
- What are the school exam policies?
The very first step to deciding which of these two exams to take is deeply researching the exam policies of the top schools you’re interested in. By doing this, you’ll figure out which schools are accepting which exams! thus the first step of GRE vs GMAT analysis is examining school policies.
- Have you taken practice examinations?
The next parameter in deciding which of these exams you should take is practiced exam scores. Take them in realistic conditions and compare your score of GRE vs GMAT. Did you score significantly higher on one test than the other? Did one test feel more challenging than the other? Answer these questions to determine which test you should take.
Note- It’s very much possible to register for and take both the GMAT and the GRE. However, it isn’t openly recommended because of the time and money it takes to study for each of these exams.
WHY DO BUSINESS SCHOOLS PREFER GMAT OVER GRE?
According to a survey, 25% of business schools prefer GMAT over GRE. This is because of the following reasons:
- Questions on the GMAT are particularly based on Quantitative and Integrated Reasoning which tests the candidate’s skills and knowledge more directly to the business fields.
- Some schools are of the ideology that submitting GMAT scores peculiarly show that the candidate is certain about attending business school
- The majority of business schools choose to submit GMAT scores over GRE scores because schools are more familiar with the GMAT. So they are better at interpreting GMAT scores.
However, it is important to note that more and more business schools are coming to accept GRE scores as an equal parameter to a GMAT score. Interestingly, the most prestigious business schools, such as Harvard Business School, Yale School of Management, and Stanford Graduate School of Business have specifically stated that they view both the exams equally.
FINAL ASSESSMENT: GMAT v/s GRE
As we saw, how more and more schools have come to accept GRE scores, candidates are certainly confused as to which exam they should take. We also saw that both these exams contain sections like writing, quantitative, and verbal that cover many similar topics. However, while comparing the two, GMAT has more challenging quantitative questions and the GRE has more challenging verbal questions.
One very important thing to remember is that the test scores only make up to be one part of the application. There are other parts, such as your personal statement and letters of recommendation, which should come out equally strong so that you have optimal chances of getting into the top schools.