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EMBA Programs That Don’t Require the GMAT (Part 1)
Many applicants who apply to executive MBA (EMBA) programs are experienced professionals – many of which haven’t taken a standardized test for years. For many applicants, the GMAT may be an unwelcome hurdle to overcome while already managing a demanding career. Other applicants may have taken the GMAT and received a score that was much lower than hoped for and recognize such a score might greatly diminish their odds of EMBA admissions success.
But for EMBA applicants, there is good news! Because the age and experience demographic of EMBA candidates differs from the traditional full-time MBA pool, several prestigious EMBA programs have eliminated the GMAT requirement. Below we highlight some of most competitive EMBA programs that are already outstanding schools, and, as an added plus, do not require GMAT.
NYU Stern School of Business
Stern dropped its GMAT requirement for EMBA applicants back in 2011. Stern made the decision to eliminate the GMAT after a study showed that enrolled Stern EMBA test-takers did no better academically than enrolled Stern EMBA non-test-takers. Previously, Stern granted admission to EMBA students without GMAT due to a waiver policy in place. The study, however, proved to the admissions committee that the GMAT was not an accurate predictor of a candidate’s ability and potential to excel in MBA studies, and the GMAT requirement was eliminated altogether. However, students must demonstrate quantitative and academic proficiency through prior coursework, professional experience, and/or certifications. If these do not exist, the applicant may want to take the GMAT or GRE to demonstrate proficiency.
Needless to say, the school’s location in the heart of New York City provides abundant advantages to executives looking to broaden their professional network or remain close their company hub. The average enrollee, who has approximately 14 years of work experience, will leave with a degree from one of the world’s most renowned universities and a much wider network of contacts. Because the program allows executives to complete their course of study only two classes at a time, graduates walk out of the program without having sacrificed career or company time.
MIT Sloan School of Management
Similar to Stern, Sloan agreed that the requirement to take the GMAT put an undue stress on executive applicants and that scores did not correlate with performance once accepted to the program. Sloan only recently dropped their requirement for the GMAT, which drew the excitement of many businesspeople looking to pursue an EMBA. However, applicants might want to take the GMAT if they feel their transcripts do not accurately represent their profile.
Northwestern Kellogg School of Management
As one of the U.S.’s most highly ranked programs across the board, Kellogg provides excellent opportunities for its students, particularly in international studies, where students can take courses from locations in either Chicago (Evanston campus) or near Miami. And, the Kellogg application doesn’t require the GMAT. However, there are several stipulations to Kellogg’s “no GMAT requirement”. First, the GMAT is required for applicants who do not have a Bachelor’s degree. What you’re probably thinking is, “Candidates can be accepted if they do not have a Bachelor’s degree??” This fact alone is a great testament to Kellogg’s flexibility and desire to diversify their class with the brightest minds, regardless of background. Second, Kellogg may request that some applicants take the GMAT in order to strengthen their application. This means that, in some cases, if a student shows excellent professional performance but subpar academic performance, he or she may be asked to take the GMAT. Alternatively, if your academic profile is subpar, to prove to the school that you are capable of achieving academic success, you may want to consider the GMAT as a complementary marker of your abilities.
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Dr. Shel (Shelly Watts)
President, MBA Admit.com