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Kaplan Survey: 85% of Business Schools Now Accept the GRE® as an Admissions Alternative to the GMAT®, Though Few Prospective MBAs are Taking this Route

Sep. 21, 2014

All Graduate Level Programs, Press Releases, Survey Results


New York, NY (October 21, 2014) — Acceptance of the GRE as an admissions alternative to the GMAT among U.S. business schools has reached critical mass, according to Kaplan Test Prep’s 2014 survey of business school admissions officers.* According to the survey, 85% of MBA programs now give students the option to submit a score from the GRE (historically the admissions exam for non-business graduate programs) instead of a GMAT score. This percentage has steadily increased year-over-year since Kaplan first began tracking the issue in 2009, when only 24% of business schools said they accepted the GRE.

The caveat in wider GRE acceptance: Still only a trickle of MBA applicants are submitting a GRE score instead of a GMAT score. Over half of the admissions officers surveyed said that just one in ten or fewer applicants took this admissions path last application cycle, representing a slight uptick from Kaplan’s past surveys. But is this apprehension from applicants warranted? Additional Kaplan data shows that 78% of MBA programs say scores from both tests are viewed equally, but 18% of MBA programs say applicants who submit a GMAT score have an advantage over applicants who submit a GRE score.

“The trendline for business schools that accept the GRE as an admissions alternative to the GMAT has been unmistakable over the past five years. What was once seen as an almost exotic admissions policy by business schools has become nearly ubiquitous,” said Brian Carlidge, executive director of pre-business and pre-graduate programs, Kaplan Test Prep. “Our advice to prospective MBAs is if all the business schools they plan to apply to accept the GRE in addition to the GMAT, then contact those schools and find out if they have a preference for one exam over the other. We also advise students to take the GMAT if some of the schools to which they intend on applying do not accept the GRE. While the GRE is widely accepted, the only exam that is universally accepted is the GMAT.”

For more information about Kaplan Test Prep’s 2014 survey of business school admissions officers, please contact Russell Schaffer at or 212.453.7538.

*For the 2014 Kaplan survey, admissions officers from 204 business schools from across the United States – including 11 of the top 30 MBA programs, as ranked by U.S. News & World Report – were polled by telephone between August and September 2014.

GMAT® is a registered trademark of the Graduate Management Admission Council™. Kaplan materials do not contain actual GMAT items and are neither endorsed by nor affiliated in any way with GMAC. GRE ® is a registered trademark of the Educational Testing Service, which neither sponsors nor endorses this product.

About Kaplan Test Prep

Kaplan Test Prep ( is a premier provider of educational and career services for individuals, schools and businesses. Established in 1938, Kaplan is the world leader in the test prep industry. With a comprehensive menu of online offerings as well as a complete array of print books and digital products, Kaplan offers preparation for more than 90 standardized tests, including entrance exams for secondary school, college and graduate school, as well as professional licensing exams for attorneys, physicians and nurses. Kaplan also provides private tutoring and graduate admissions consulting services. Additionally, Kaplan operates new economy skills training (NEST) bootcamps designed to provide immersive training in skills that are in high demand in today’s job market and prepare participants for hire.


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Press contacts:

Kaplan, Inc. Russell Schaffer
Office: 212.453.7538
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