GMAT VS GRE for MBA [Complete Compare of GMAT VS GRE]

GMAT VS GRE for MBA – Have you made your mind to attend a Business School? Sound great!

Which test are you going to take for your MBA? A few years ago, GMAT was the most obvious and resounding answer to this question. For better or worse there was no option to join an MBA except GMAT.




These days GRE has become a popular choice for a minor section of business school applicants and the trend is growing annually.

Almost 1200 universities around the world accept the GRE, although GMAT remains the most valued exam by the business school.

The schools accepting GRE

The Stanford School of Business started accepting GRE scores instead of GMAT in the year 2005. The school made their decision to allow business school applicants to submit their GRE scores.

This decision was taken to keep in the mind that Ph.D. applicants could submit GRE scores. Many schools accept the GRE as it widens their applicant pool, starting it up to people who are considering other degrees in addition to MBA.

Benefits of GRE

  • Vocabulary Focused Test

GRE completely focuses on vocabulary and bit of logic. On the other hand, GMAT totally contains grammar and sentence structure based questions.
If you are rich in vocabulary or you can easily learn and use new words daily GRE is for you.

GMAT extensively tests your logical abilities. You will get plenty of logic-based questions on the GMAT, much more than GRE.

  • Simple Math
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The syllabus of Math is easier than GMAT. As it has extraordinary diverse test takers such as engineers, doctors etc. Math is simple and more approachable to cater all students and their abilities.

If Math is not your cup of tea, you need to go for the GRE. You can score a lot higher in this section.

  • No reasoning

There is no reasoning ability is required in GRE. However, GMAT has harder parts of the Verbal section and data interpretation, with strong quantitative analysis questions.

If you are not good in reasoning ability, GRE is a great opportunity for you.
Widely available

GRE centers are more than the GMAT test centers. If you are not from a big city you have to travel much more for GMAT test. However, GRE has significantly more centers around the world.

Benefits of GMAT

  • Donít require memorize stuff

GMAT verbal stuff doesnít require memorize stuff. You only require a sound foundation in grammar and ability to think logically. This only sounds hard, but with the use of few techniques, you can learn skills quite quickly.

If you are applying to business, school and you are a working professional by the learning and applying techniques is definitely easier than having to learn words by heart.

  • Value

GMAT score automatically translates your abilities. It includes the business school admission department, the recruiters and more importantly you.

You will get a plenty of information about average GMAT scores whereas there is no information on GRE scores are available on the Internet.


GRE has two logistical advantages over the GMAT one is cost and another is location. The cost of GRE is $185 as compared to GMAT at $250. $65 seems a big deal but the price difference becomes an issue if you need to retake the GMAT. GRE offered at more locations than the GMAT.

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GRE verbal section of the GRE is focused more on vocabulary. The GMATís focus is on grammar, logic and reasoning skills. Although both the GRE and GMAT designed for native English speakers, GRE is for those who have strong knowledge of English language. That is why non-native English speakers find GMATs verbal section easier.

GRE emphasizes quick number sense and number manipulation. In GMAT math needs you to create a systematic approach to solve all the word problems. To get the admission in a business school you need to demonstrate your quantitative background. If your quantitative background is not good you will have to rely on the GMAT or GRE to show your quantitative skills.

Difference between GRE and GMAT

  • Administering Body

Graduate Record Examination created and administered by Educational Testing Services.
Graduate Management Admission Test is created by Graduate Management Council and administered by ACT Inc. and Pearson Vue.

  • Cost

The cost of GRE is $160 as of March 2010.
For GMAT you need to pay $250.

  • Subjects

GRE includes Math, Analytical reasoning, Vocabulary and Comprehension of Advanced English.

GMAT High School Mathematics, English reading, Comprehension, sentence correction, grammar, critical reasoning and writing skills.

  • Time Allocation

GRE is approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes.
GMAT is approximately 3 hours and 30 minutes.

  • Test Section

GRE Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, Analytical Writing.
GMAT Analytical Writing-Analysis of Argument, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative

  • Scoring

GRE is only a 340 marks test as you scored more than 330 you would book your slot in one of the top university.

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GMAT is an 800 marks test, you need to score more than 750 for the top Universities/colleges.

How to select GMAT or GRE

The GMAT score is preferred over a high GRE score when you need to get admission into a business school. However, the GMAT is not applicable for the business schools and not a substitute for GRE.

Whereas the GRE score can be used for business school too. More than 1200 business schools accept GRE scores, many aspirants are leaning towards picking GRE out of the two. Go for the GMAT only if you want to pursue an MBA in a college that does not accept GRE score. GRE is a great choice when you consider ease, flexibility and fallback options available.

Follow the simple steps to select the GMAT or GRE

Make a list of the schools where you want to apply.

Check the school if they accept the GRE. As if taking one test over another gives you an advantage.

Take a practice test for both for GRE and GMAT. Download some free sample practice papers.

While you end up applying to the school with several different testing options. You need to focus on the test taking strategy that will serve you best during the application process.

Now it is up to you to decide which test you select. All the best!

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