The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a standardized test used by graduate business schools to assess the qualifications of applicants for admission to their programs. It measures skills in analytical writing, integrated reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and verbal reasoning. Business schools use the GMAT scores as a crucial part of their admissions process to evaluate applicants’ readiness for the rigours of a graduate business program. The test is designed to predict success in the classroom and beyond, by testing skills required for success in business school and beyond.

For international candidates, the GMAT exam objectively measures their abilities, allowing business schools to evaluate them against a standard benchmark. This is especially important for international applicants, as their academic and professional backgrounds may differ significantly from those of domestic candidates. While some business schools may offer GMAT waivers, it is still essential for international applicants to take the GMAT exam as it can strengthen their application and increase their chances of admission. The GMAT scores provide a standardized measure of their abilities, demonstrating to admissions committees that they have the necessary skills to succeed in a graduate business program.

Who Can Take The GMAT Exam? 

More than 100,000 aspiring business school candidates undertake the GMAT exam each year, dedicating themselves to the rigorous process to secure admission into a prestigious graduate management program.

What’s more, the GMAT has become a hallmark for those vying for entry into the top echelon of business schools, with a staggering 70% of applicants submitting GMAT scores for consideration at the elite MBA programs ranked within the top 100. This showcases the undeniable significance and relevance of the GMAT exam in business education, underscoring its critical role in the selection process of top-tier management institutions.

Benefits of Taking The GMAT Exam 

  • Taking the GMAT is a wise investment of time and effort for international candidates seeking to pursue a graduate-level business program. This test demonstrates academic readiness for a rigorous graduate curriculum and offers a standardized measure of applicants’ abilities and potential, further enhancing their competitiveness in the admissions process.
  • The GMAT is a comprehensive exam that tests various skills, including analytical writing, integrated reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and verbal reasoning. By successfully navigating these testing domains, international candidates can signal to admissions committees that they possess the foundational skills and knowledge required to thrive in a graduate-level business program.
  • Moreover, taking the GMAT can also give international applicants a competitive edge over other candidates who may have yet to take the test. This can be especially advantageous in highly selective admissions processes where standing out from the pack is crucial. By showcasing their GMAT scores, applicants can demonstrate their commitment to academic excellence and highlight their potential for success.
  • Another compelling benefit of taking the GMAT exam is the potential for merit-based scholarships offered by various business schools. In recognition of outstanding academic achievement, these scholarships can provide much-needed financial support to international candidates seeking to pursue their graduate business education. 

There are so many top institutions that offer such scholarships, such as the Manchester Merit Scholarships by the Alliance Manchester Business School at The University of Manchester, the GMAT Scholarship for the Amsterdam MBA by the Amsterdam Business School at the University of Amsterdam, the Bocconi International Awards by the Bocconi University, and the ESMT Diversity Scholarship by the ESMT Berlin.

Potential Drawbacks of Not Taking The GMAT Exam 

For students who want to pursue their MBAs from the top institutions, it is essential to note that some business schools offer test waivers for the GMAT exam. While this may be an attractive option for some candidates, there are potential drawbacks to not taking the GMAT exam.

  • Missing the Benefits 

By not taking the GMAT exam, candidates may miss out on the benefits that come with it. The GMAT exam is designed to assess a candidate’s analytical, verbal, and quantitative skills, which are essential for success in a business school program. Through the GMAT, candidates can demonstrate their ability to think critically and solve complex problems, skills highly valued in the business world.

  • Disadvantage When Compared to Others

Candidates who do not take the GMAT exam may be at a disadvantage compared to those who do. While some business schools offer test waivers, many still require the GMAT as part of the application process. Candidates who do not take the GMAT may be seen as less competitive or less prepared for the challenges of a business school program. This could ultimately impact their chances of being admitted to a top business school.

  • Less Scope for Applying 

Not taking the GMAT exam may limit candidates’ options for applying to different business schools. As previously mentioned, many business schools require the GMAT as part of the application process. By not taking the GMAT, candidates may be unable to apply to certain business schools, which could limit their options and hinder their ability to find the right program.



The GMAT exam offers many benefits, including increased chances of acceptance into top-tier business schools, potential scholarship opportunities, and the ability to showcase one’s analytical and problem-solving skills to prospective employers. On the other hand, not taking the GMAT exam may limit one’s options for pursuing a graduate management program and restrict access to specific career opportunities.

Aspiring business school candidates need to take advantage of the many resources available to them in preparing for and taking the GMAT exam, such as study materials, practice tests, and tutoring services. With proper preparation and dedication, individuals can maximize their chances of success and open new doors for their future careers.

To apply for the GMAT exam or for more information, click here.

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