GRE and GMAT in Dictionary

If I have the option between GRE or GMAT, which one should I choose?

GRE or GMAT which one is right for me, if I want to study an MBA? When admission committee representatives, as well as other academic advisors, are asked whether it is better to take the GMAT or GRE, their answer is usually that it does not matter. Although many graduate programs, especially MBAs, apply interchangeably to the GRE or GMAT, the majority of graduate programs are inclined to ask for only the GRE. If you have the opportunity to present both, a strategic decision in your admissions process is deciding which exam to study for. We often recommend to our advisors that. Take the exam you have the best chance of scoring as quickly as possible. For this we do two mock exams, a GMAT and a GRE and we work on the strongest test. In addition, we request that they take a diagnostic test of essential mathematics and another of critical reasoning and reading comprehension, as a complement to inform our recommendation. It should be noted that, in our experience, even though the GRE is a test with a stronger component in complex vocabulary, most Spanish speakers do better on the GRE than on the GMAT.


Advantages and disadvantages of the GRE or GMAT


MBA admissions committees are more familiar with the GMAT.

Until a couple of years ago the only exam that MBAs accepted was the GMAT, so MBA admissions committees have more experience interpreting these results within the context of their admissions process. Currently admissions committees are just getting used to GRE: this is even more true among admissions committees of small schools, without as many resources to train admissions office employees . Despite this, this situation is transitory, and every year more MBA programs accept both exams and genuinely do not care which candidate presents. Some admissions committees, especially those of universities in the United States, have been accepting the GRE within their processes for more than five years. For what they are already, more than used to receiving and interpreting both results.

The GMAT is shorter than the GRE

The GMAT is a test that takes less time than the GRE. The GRE lasts 3 hours and 45 minutes, while the GMAT lasts 3 hours.

If you are interested in consulting

Some consultancies use the GMAT as part of their admissions processes. If you want to do an MBA to have a professional career in consulting, you need to know that, as part of your selection process, several of the best consultancies in the world request a GMAT score from their prospects. Although at the beginning of their processes they request, especially the Latin American consulting firms, a “GMAT-style exam”, in order to continue climbing within their processes, they later require to present an official exam score. The fact that they only require a score from the GMAT and not the GRE is something that may change over time, when it becomes more popular the GRE among MBA candidates. Meanwhile, the score they commonly ask for is the GMAT. If you want to make a career in a consultancy or are already part of a specific one, we recommend that you inform yourself well about it. Keep in mind, however, that your priority at this time is not “to kill two birds with one stone”, but to take the exam that suits you best to get admission to graduate school.


The GMAT is a more difficult test in the quantitative part.

The reason the GMAT is more difficult in the quantitative section is not because it measures different concepts than the GRE, but because it is a test that has become much more sophisticated. This has to do with the nature of the exam and the nature of the applicants who take it over the years, given that until a few years ago the GMAT was the only exam accepted by MBAs and their profile is much more oriented towards the quantitative aspect.The function of the exam is to differentiate between the candidates who take it to be able to compare them. However, to make a ranking among candidates with similar profiles, the exam has to use more traps because the mistakes made by a candidate with a competitive profile due to lack of knowledge of concepts are minor. Since the GRE is an exam requested by a wide range of programs, (not all of them quantitative), the type of applicants who take it is more diverse: some are good for the verbal part, others for the quantitative part . This means that the exam has to be adapted less, or at a slower pace, to well-prepared candidates who have a similar profile.

Until now, MBAs usually only report the GMAT scores of their accepted students to rankings .

This is not a disadvantage in itself, but it can be if you have a good profile, but a score below the average of the MBAs that interest you . The admissions committee, knowing that your score may have an impact on your position within a ranking, may reconsider your admission for this factor. Anecdotally, we are aware of cases of high profile candidates requesting an updated GRE score to be offered admission to competitive programs concerned about their position in a ranking. This is especially relevant for MBAs who care a lot about their position in the ranking and who need to move up in the ranking to build their prestige. (Not all universities, nor all MBAs pay equal attention to rankings.) Those who already have a reputation built for many years tend to pay less attention to them and do not let them influence their admission process.


The GRE offers more flexibility.

Defined by AbbreviationFinder, the GRE is the exam that most graduate students accept. It is very likely that there is more than one program or type of graduate that can help you achieve your long-term career goals . If you choose to prepare for the GMAT very early in the process, it may self-disqualify you for other postgraduate degrees that do not accept this exam. It may be that, when you start studying, you only want to do an MBA, but that, in a couple of months, you find out or by chance find a program that you love, that helps you do what you want in the future, and that unfortunately, do not accept GMAT.

The GRE costs less money than the GMAT.

The cost of the GRE is less than the GMAT. Go to the ETS page to check the updated costs of the exam: AND the GMAT:

The GRE is more widely accepted even for other types of graduate degrees.

As many programs seek to expand the number and improve the quality of people applying for their graduate programs and know that requesting a specific exam can limit or discourage applicants , more and more people are accepting the GRE. An example of this is Harvard Law School, which previously only accepted the LSAT and has started accepting the GRE as well.

There is a greater number of people who present the GRE.

This is an advantage because a competitive score is determined through percentiles. For example, a score in the 90th percentile means that only 10 percent of those who took the test in recent years performed better. As the number of people taking the exam is greater, more people can fit into each of the percentiles. On average, the GRE is presented by four times more people than the GMAT.


Contains more complex vocabulary

The GRE requires the applicant to work consciously to expand their lexicon in order to answer many of the questions. This can be an added difficulty for applicants who are overwhelmed with memorizing words.

In conclusion:

It is important that from the beginning, you strategically prepare for the exam. A good score can make a difference in your process, and in the success of your application. To choose the best exam, it is not only necessary to know the differences or disadvantages between one and the other. It is important to have the guidance of someone specialized to help you choose the exam that is best for you. As part of your preparation with us, you will have a personal meeting where we will clarify your doubts about the exams and we will help you choose the one that best suits you with data and information specific to your personal case.