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Should I Retake the GMAT?

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Should I Retake the GMAT? [#permalink] New post 14 Jun 2011, 14:00
I took the GMAT a week ago and scored a 710 (Q44, V44). Normally I would be fine with that score (although I have been scoring 720/730 in practice tests). I am, however, rather disappointed with the quantitative score. A score of 44 places me in the 68th percentile.

How detrimental is this low quant score to my overall application? My upper-end is ~47, but I think test-day nerves got to me on a handful of the quant questions.

I am aiming at the top-tier B-schools (Harvard/Stanford/Wharton/Booth) but probably will not be applying for another few years. I graduated from a top-20 university with a 3.75 GPA in economics. Currently working in finance at a leading global tech company.

I realize my quant score is on the low end, but I would rather devote additional effort to other areas of my application (work experience, recommendations, leadership) if they can somehow overshadow this low score. Also, I am hoping the admissions officers can see that solid undergrad GPA and work experience in finance show that I am reasonably competent in real-world mathematics (most likely had a bit of an off day on the GMAT).

What do you think? Should I stay put with the 710 and not risk a lower score, or re-take in an attempt to boost the quant score? Thanks!
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Re: Should I Retake the GMAT? [#permalink] New post 14 Jun 2011, 17:04
I personally do not think your 710 (even with the lobsided score) is bad, especially the fact that you have such a strong GPA (let alone in econ) and have working experience with numbers. I think that if you were to roll the dice on this, you should be fine.

However, judging from the perspective that you won't be applying until 2 or 3 years later, you still have plenty of time to do a retake. A 730 isn't going to make your 710 look any better, but if you were to bring up your quant score, it would at least not be a red flag, if it's one in the first place. Plus, if you were to boost your score up to 750 or above, you stand a great chance at the top b-schools even more.
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Re: Should I Retake the GMAT? [#permalink] New post 14 Jun 2011, 17:22
Thanks for the reassurance. I am just hoping that these schools do not have a firm cut-off for the quant. I also agree that there is probably a very small marginal benefit going from 710 to 730. I certainly would not be retaking it to increase the overall score by 20 points; it would only be to improve the quant portion alone. A potential risk, however, is seeing a decrease in the verbal score the second time around, which would likely make me look rather foolish.
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Re: Should I Retake the GMAT? [#permalink] New post 14 Jun 2011, 19:07
I wouldn't worry too much about your verbal score even if it drops should you take it the 2nd time. V44 is beyond excellent in the world of verbal-ity and it wouldn't raise any red flag if you went from a V44 to a V40. At any rate, if you decide to not retake the GMAT, best of luck to you on the application process some time down the road. If you do, good luck on the retake.
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Re: Should I Retake the GMAT? [#permalink] New post 16 Jun 2011, 04:37
ds17 wrote:
I took the GMAT a week ago and scored a 710 (Q44, V44). Normally I would be fine with that score (although I have been scoring 720/730 in practice tests). I am, however, rather disappointed with the quantitative score. A score of 44 places me in the 68th percentile.

How detrimental is this low quant score to my overall application? My upper-end is ~47, but I think test-day nerves got to me on a handful of the quant questions.

I am aiming at the top-tier B-schools (Harvard/Stanford/Wharton/Booth) but probably will not be applying for another few years. I graduated from a top-20 university with a 3.75 GPA in economics. Currently working in finance at a leading global tech company.

I realize my quant score is on the low end, but I would rather devote additional effort to other areas of my application (work experience, recommendations, leadership) if they can somehow overshadow this low score. Also, I am hoping the admissions officers can see that solid undergrad GPA and work experience in finance show that I am reasonably competent in real-world mathematics (most likely had a bit of an off day on the GMAT).

What do you think? Should I stay put with the 710 and not risk a lower score, or re-take in an attempt to boost the quant score? Thanks!


Hello

We would advice you to retake the exam so your scores are balanced well. Since you are aiming for top schools then a score above 700 is desirable. Also the GMAT alone won’t determine your chances of admission; your work experience plays a vital role as well. You need to ensure that academically you are in a good position. However it is not just the academics but beyond the academics that will help you in determining your candidature.

Generally most of the applicants have a good 4-5 years of work experience. Although it is not just the work experience that counts but also what you did there like-what were your achievements, what initiative you took, what changes you drove in your workplace etc. So if you can show that in 4 years you have demonstrated the skills business schools are looking for you could put in a strong set of essays.

Hence the quality of your work, your academics and beyond academics will play an important role in determining your candidature.

Make sure you follow the ‘show rather than tell’ principle so that the admissions committee could really understand your strengths and differentiating factors.”
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Re: Should I Retake the GMAT?   [#permalink] 16 Jun 2011, 04:37
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