Online GMAT vs. Online GRE
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected businesses and schools throughout the world. Since testing centers closed worldwide; both the GMAT and GRE have switched to online formats for the foreseeable future.
GMAT’s whiteboard debacle
ETS was first to make the move, releasing their online, at-home exam almost a month before the GMAT. While GRE examinees are allowed to use a physical whiteboard with an erasable marker or paper with a transparent sheet protector and erasable marker, GMAT banned these physical aids. In their place, the GMAT included a virtual whiteboard. This feature was initiated without a tutorial or way to practice with the whiteboard before taking the test.
Reaction was swift and negative, with an online petition launched demanding that test-takers be allowed to use a traditional whiteboard and marker. There have already been close to 2,300 signatures on the petition. In response to the harsh criticism, GMAC has published an explanation of the tool and made a practice version available.
Potential test-takers are not impressed. It has been estimated that using the online whiteboard can cost an examinee 100 or more points on the exam, and that it would take 1-2 weeks of practicing on the tool for it not to negatively affect their score. Most students do not want to give up valuable study time to perfect the use of the online tool when the GRE offers a more user-friendly option.
Which online exam is more user-friendly?
The online GRE permits test-takers to save and return to questions during each section. This allows examinees to skip more difficult questions and return to them later. This is not an option on the online GMAT.
This is not to say that GMAC is not responsive to the needs of their test-takers. In addition to the explanation of the online whiteboard and the practice version, they have already made changes to the GMAT online exam score reporting process. In order to give test-takers more flexibility, they will now be able to review test scores before sending them to b-schools. Test-takers no longer have the option to select their b-schools during registration. Anyone that has previously taken the GMAT online has been notified that their scores will not automatically be sent to schools chosen during registration.
After reviewing their scores, examinees will follow this procedure to select their programs:
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