can you advise on when to take which test? would you ever suggest taking GRE over GMAT? confused about this issue and am hearing more and more about GRE.
The MBA programs started to accept the GRE so that they could get access to a potentially larger applicant pool, for instance people considering pursuing MAs or MPAs. This would have the positive effect of boosting the number of applications and thus lowering the schools' acceptance rate (more applicants, same number of spots = higher selectivity). In addition to the statistical benefit, the MBA programs are also legitimately interested in expanding the "types" of students they enroll - English and art history majors have different points of view and experiences and can potentially liven up class discussion with their insight in the publishing or design industries. For these reasons, accepting the GRE made perfect sense for the MBA programs.
On the other hand, it does not make sense for all applicants to take the GRE. If you test well, a high GMAT score is going to give your application a boost, so taking the GRE could potentially eliminate that benefit.
The GRE is a good option if you don't necessarily test well and come from a non-traditional background. However, it is unclear whether the programs will truly consider traditional applicants (finance, consulting, IT) with only GRE scores. They may, but they may not. Unfortunately, the jury is still out on whether the GRE is a good option for traditional applicants.
Jennifer Bloom, CPRW
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