Phrases like “Online MBA No GMAT,” “MBA Without GMAT” and “Distance Learning MBA” have become popular advertisement taglines on the Internet, mostly because schools offering such degrees know they are quite alluring to prospective students. Why?
For one thing, cost. It’s probably the greatest motivating factor for potential graduate students. Between preparation courses, books and private tutors, costs can skyrocket. This can become very intimidating, especially when the cost of a graduate degree is included into the equation.
[Let Us Match You With Top No GMAT and No GRE Programs Now]
No GMAT Degree Gains Popularity With Universities
Many leading universities and colleges, including some Ivy League universities, have moved away from requiring the GMAT for both their online and on-campus degree programs. What started as a trend with online MBA degree programs has now spread to bricks-and-mortar universities.
Schools no longer requiring the GMAT include Harvard University, Stanford and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management, all of which now accept the GRE instead. Others will accept students without a GMAT or GRE score, often if they already have extensive experience in the business world.
You might be wondering, “Where’s the catch?
There really isn’t one.
Instead of requiring the GMAT, graduate school programs have expanded their requirements in other areas such as requesting additional letters of recommendation and references. Rather than the usual one or two, they may require an extensive essay as to why you want to enroll in the program, and they will request your past academic transcripts and professional credentials to make sure you are a good fit. The degree program may also require refresher courses in math or analytical problem solving, as the first year’s courses may heavily involve those skills.
If you’re interested in learning more about the GMAT, let’s take a look back in time.
A Brief Look at the History of GMAT
The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a standardized exam that over 1,800 MBA programs from across the globe use to measure a student’s aptitude to succeed in a graduate business program. For years, the GMAT was the only thing standing in the way of a potential graduate student gaining entrance into the college or university of their choice – until now.
In 1953, deans from several graduate business schools met with the service responsible for creating the SAT and GRE tests, the Educational Testing Service (ETS). The ETS was asked to create a test that could estimate how an MBA candidate would perform in courses regarding business and management. The test, first administered the following year (1954), was named the Admissions Test for Graduate Business Study (ATGBS).
By 1976, the ATGBS became the GMAT. And by 2005, the GMAT was no longer overseen by ETS.
The pressure the test puts students under has not gone unnoticed. In 2008, a cheating scandal surfaced leading to the withdrawal of 84 applicants’ scores.
Today the GMAT is available in over 100 countries. According to the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), which now oversees the GMAT, the test is the “most widely used assessment for graduate management admissions and the most reliable predictor of academic success in graduate business studies.
More Changes Coming for GMAT
In June 2012, the GMAT will change. According to the GMAC, the exam has been updated to include a thought process that professionals already use in their daily business lives – integrated reasoning. The overhaul comes almost 60 years after the exam first debuted, and was created through extensive research from both professional test creators and business school students who recently had taken the test themselves.
The answer to the great “do I need to take the GMAT or not” debate is increasingly becoming, "No!"
[Get Matched With Top Online Colleges and Universities Now]
A BusinessWeek article from August 2005 pointed out that 12 of the top 25 Executive MBA (EMBA) programs the magazine endorsed did not require the GMAT. Although written almost seven years ago, the article continues to express the feelings of those earning an MBA that a GMAT score is not indicative of their experience as a manager or that of their business decision-making skills.
Before making your decision on what college or university’s graduate program you are interested in applying to, do your research into the program (accreditation, reviews, rankings) and its requirements.