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# Will my 45Q hurt my chances?

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Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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31 Jan 2014, 05:28
I have a MA in history, and several years of work experience as a HYP researcher and then as a humanities high school teacher at an independent school. I'm interested in working for a consulting firm in edtech.

I have very little quantitative coursework on my transcript. In fact, I think I took only two elementary quant courses as an undergrad. I did well on the AP Calc and AP Physics exams, which also appear on my transcript, but I'm not sure those count.

When I took the GMAT in December, I scored a 720, 45Q, 44V. I honestly think that's the best I can do in quant, but I know a 45Q is low for MBA applicants at the top schools, and I'm worried this will hurt my chances of admission. Is my score likely to get me rejected? I really don't want to have to retake for a number of reasons.
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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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31 Jan 2014, 08:00
Your score will raise some questions, but doesn't equal an automatic rejection. Take a course, such as financial accounting, at a local college to supplement your transcript and show that you can handle the quantitative rigor of b-school.

I was also really concerned about my quant score (Q44) holding me back, but I have gotten acceptances from multiple programs (Kellogg, Yale, and Duke so far), and just got an interview invite from HBS.

I do, however, have quant-based courses on my undergrad transcript and my position requires quant skills, which I asked my recommenders to highlight.

p.s. I also work in edtech
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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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01 Feb 2014, 15:28
Since the spring semster has already started, I won't be able to present an alternative transcript before the admissions deadline next fall. Does this mean I should really consider retaking?

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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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01 Feb 2014, 16:17
You can take a summer course.

If you think you can score higher, then retake. I'm assuming you've only taken the gmat once so far. If you don't think you can score higher, then find other ways to prove your quant abilities. Is there anything in your current position that you could ask your recommenders to highlight to show your quant/analytical skills?

Q45 is not bad. But since you have about 7 months until the first application deadlines, you have plenty of time to work on mitigating any concerns that may be perceived in your app.

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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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01 Feb 2014, 19:30
45Q is not considered a low score. I also got a 45Q and got accepted at Duke, Yale and Rice and was invited to interview at Cornell before I withdrew my application. Only take a accounting/economics class in summer if have the time, money and energy, otherwise just focus on applications. Also, you can take a class in Fall and send an update to the schools, if necessary - might help if you are on wait-list (thinking bad scenarios)
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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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03 Feb 2014, 08:19
Hi Trinko,

Here's what you're facing. On one hand, the raw score isn't bad. It isn't that concerning. From a percentile standpoint, it'll be low but that's to be expected and will only continue to deteriorate as it self-adjusts over the next few years.

However, a 45 is still a good score. If it is good ENOUGH will depend on 2 things.

1) Where do you want to apply? The higher you go, the higher the average GMAT, the higher your score needs to be
2) What your undergrad GPA was and where you went? Was it average from an average school? Then higher might be necessary

Here's the thing. Retaking the GMAT might be the right course of action here if you decide you need to work on this versus alternative transcript. Here's why. Your quant isn't LOW per se. It's average. So if you take a course, you might be able to weave a story around it but that's more useful when improving a negative, not further refining something neutral. Does that make sense? I don't know enough to make a suggestion here but consider what it says about you and your story and let that guide which choice you make.

I'm happy to help if you want to share some more!

Bhavik
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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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05 Feb 2014, 18:07
Trinko

You have a super balanced score. Your score is actually rare, and it shows what type of person you are.

I am not an admission expert, but a score like yours should actually CATCH eyes instead of turn them away. Adcoms constantly see 49+Q and mid to high 30s in V.

In addition, I remember reading on a MGMAT blog where a stanford professor said "his best students overtime had a split score in the mid 40's on the GMAT."

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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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05 Feb 2014, 19:37
Cantona wrote:
Trinko

You have a super balanced score. Your score is actually rare, and it shows what type of person you are.

I am not an admission expert, but a score like yours should actually CATCH eyes instead of turn them away. Adcoms constantly see 49+Q and mid to high 30s in V.

In addition, I remember reading on a MGMAT blog where a stanford professor said "his best students overtime had a split score in the mid 40's on the GMAT."

A question 45V 51Q, or 45V 45Q ......... which one is better?
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Last edited by code19 on 05 Feb 2014, 19:42, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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05 Feb 2014, 19:41
code19 wrote:
Cantona wrote:
Trinko

You have a super balanced score. Your score is actually rare, and it shows what type of person you are.

I am not an admission expert, but a score like yours should actually CATCH eyes instead of turn them away. Adcoms constantly see 49+Q and mid to high 30s in V.

In addition, I remember reading on a MGMAT blog where a stanford professor said "his best students overtime had a split score in the mid 40's on the GMAT."

A question 45V 51Q, or 45V 45Q ......... which one is better?

Not sure if you're pulling my chain, but in that scenario.. since verbal is equal, the higher score (51/45) is better in every scenario.

Just to clarify - my comment was for the same GMAT score (720) but different breakdown. Adcoms at top 10 schools will commonly see a 49Q/39V, or 48Q/40V etc. Perhaps a 50Q/37V . That type of thing, which all roughly gets to 720. What they don't see often is an equal split - which hints at a persons intellectual capability and problem solving in a different , yet equally effective manner.

-C
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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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05 Feb 2014, 19:49
Cantona wrote:
code19 wrote:
Cantona wrote:
Trinko

You have a super balanced score. Your score is actually rare, and it shows what type of person you are.

I am not an admission expert, but a score like yours should actually CATCH eyes instead of turn them away. Adcoms constantly see 49+Q and mid to high 30s in V.

In addition, I remember reading on a MGMAT blog where a stanford professor said "his best students overtime had a split score in the mid 40's on the GMAT."

A question 45V 51Q, or 45V 45Q ......... which one is better?

Not sure if you're pulling my chain, but in that scenario.. since verbal is equal, the higher score (51/45) is better in every scenario.

Just to clarify - my comment was for the same GMAT score (720) but different breakdown. Adcoms at top 10 schools will commonly see a 49Q/39V, or 48Q/40V etc. Perhaps a 50Q/37V . That type of thing. What they don't see often is an equal split - which hints at a persons intellectual capability and problem solving in a different , yet equally effective manner.

-C

I always thought such an unbalanced breakdown is already built into the final score by giving higher weight to the verbal, therefore score alone should be good enough measure if the difference is not extreme at 720 the difference can't get too extreme.
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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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05 Feb 2014, 19:58
code19 wrote:
I always thought such an unbalanced breakdown is already built into the final score by giving higher weight to the verbal, therefore score alone should be good enough measure if the difference is not extreme at 720 the difference can't get too extreme.

Thats the point. I don't think that is true. While we are nitpicking now, for a top 10 school it is worth discussing.

You can get a 700 by getting a 51Q and 33V. This is not anywhere near as good as a more balanced, lets say, 47Q/39V - which also yeilds a 700. Adcoms want to see a balance.

Now, in this case - Tinko is actually "weak" in quant, and super strong in verbal. My argument is that this is ok - because a) 45 is not that weak of a score (it is quite good actually) and B) the split of 45/44 is rare. It makes for an interesting 720.

-C
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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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05 Feb 2014, 20:06
While it might be the best breakdown for all scores of 720, but my point is *any* breakdown for a score that is greater than 720, say 730, is better in a context where we are discussing the effect of scores at such sensitivity but given that GMAT is only one component of many in admission, I don't think either matters at 700+ level for any school including top 10. i.e. 45Q is neither bad nor good, or it is as good as your final score.

We must agree to disagree

Cantona wrote:
code19 wrote:
I always thought such an unbalanced breakdown is already built into the final score by giving higher weight to the verbal, therefore score alone should be good enough measure if the difference is not extreme at 720 the difference can't get too extreme.

Thats the point. I don't think that is true. While we are nitpicking now, for a top 10 school it is worth discussing.

You can get a 700 by getting a 51Q and 33V. This is not anywhere near as good as a more balanced, lets say, 47Q/39V - which also yeilds a 700. Adcoms want to see a balance.

Now, in this case - Tinko is actually "weak" in quant, and super strong in verbal. My argument is that this is ok - because a) 45 is not that weak of a score (it is quite good actually) and B) the split of 45/44 is rare. It makes for an interesting 720.

-C

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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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05 Feb 2014, 20:13
I would like to understand what you mean to be honest.

I am specifically talking about this persons 720, and if his score is good enough or if it should be retaken. A low quant score is indeed a common cause for concern. Similar to an extremely low verbal score (in the 20s). I am not talking about a 730, or a 51q/45v as you mentioned. Those are out of scope.

Adcmons do look at your score breakdown. This is why you typically have to write the number (Q/V) and percentile. Saying any "720" is good enough is not correct, as many factors such as nationality and score breakdown play into how "good" your 720 is.

Example: A 720 from an Indian IT male that is very heavy in Quant is borderline average for top 10 schools. However, a 45Q/44V breakdown for the same IT Indian male? Superstar.

Hope you see where I am going with this. They are not all equal.
-C
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Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances? [#permalink]

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06 Feb 2014, 06:49
CriticalSquareMBA wrote:
Hi Trinko,

Here's what you're facing. On one hand, the raw score isn't bad. It isn't that concerning. From a percentile standpoint, it'll be low but that's to be expected and will only continue to deteriorate as it self-adjusts over the next few years.

However, a 45 is still a good score. If it is good ENOUGH will depend on 2 things.

1) Where do you want to apply? The higher you go, the higher the average GMAT, the higher your score needs to be
2) What your undergrad GPA was and where you went? Was it average from an average school? Then higher might be necessary

Here's the thing. Retaking the GMAT might be the right course of action here if you decide you need to work on this versus alternative transcript. Here's why. Your quant isn't LOW per se. It's average. So if you take a course, you might be able to weave a story around it but that's more useful when improving a negative, not further refining something neutral. Does that make sense? I don't know enough to make a suggestion here but consider what it says about you and your story and let that guide which choice you make.

I'm happy to help if you want to share some more!

Bhavik

Thanks, Bhavik. I want to apply to schools in the T15, including lower end of the M7. While I have some background in IT, (two jobs working on educational research databases) I have very few quant classes as an undergrad, and the ones I took were designed for humanities people. That said, I have a 3.5 undergrad GPA from a top 10 liberal arts college. Would that help or hurt me in the end?
Re: Will my 45Q hurt my chances?   [#permalink] 06 Feb 2014, 06:49
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