MSc Admissions Blog

Advice and Information from the MSc Admissions team

The GMAT: to take or not to take?


Given that the GMAT is highly recommended for entry onto a number of our masters programmes, many of you may be in search of detailed GMAT-related guidance to help you prepare a strong application. This short post is intended to provide you with advice on all aspects of taking the GMAT: from initially preparing to take the test, to reporting your final test score to Cass. We hope you find this guidance useful!

What to expect from the GMAT test
The Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) is a three-and-a-half hour test, designed to allow graduates to showcase their suitability for a post-graduate business education. The GMAT assesses four core competencies which are vital for success at masters level study: analytical writing, integrated reasoning, quantitative skills and verbal skills.

The GMAT: To take or not to take?
The GMAT is highly recommended for entry onto our Finance-group programmes and MSc Management. If you are unsure whether the GMAT is recommended for your chosen programme, then your first port-of-call should be to check the ‘entry requirements’ page for your chosen course.

If you are intending to apply for one of our Finance-group programmes, and you have not completed a significant amount of quantitative study at bachelors degree level, then taking the GMAT is particularly advisable and will enhance your application.

When to take the test
Applicants sometimes ask whether they can submit an application for a masters programme first, and supply a GMAT score at a later date.

The short answer to this question is, yes!

You are welcome to submit an application without a GMAT score, although it is worth bearing in mind that if the GMAT is recommended for your chosen programme, then a strong scoring GMAT is likely to enhance your application.

If you choose not to provide a GMAT score with your application, your application can be assessed by the admissions panel. After an initial review of your application, it is possible that the admissions panel could request that you take the GMAT, and score above a specified threshold. As such, applicants for our Finance and Management programmes should be prepared for this eventuality.

Because each application is assessed on a case-by-case basis, and all factors are considered holistically, it is not possible for us to predict whether a GMAT score would be required. All decisions are made by the admissions panel, after receiving a formal application.

Enhancing your application
In order to present a competitive application to Cass, you should be looking to achieve an overall score of between 600 and 800 in the GMAT. To give you a rough idea, the average GMAT score for the MSc Finance cohort last academic year was 670.

If you are applying for any of our Finance-group programmes, a strong score in the quantitative sub-section is particularly desirable. Nonetheless, you should also aim to achieve above 50% in all of the four sub-sections of the test, as this will help to demonstrate academic versatility.

GMAT indicate on their website that 28% of test-takers spend at least 51 hours studying for the test, so it is worth considering how much time you might need to set aside. A good way of preparing for the GMAT is to test yourself with a practice exam. Being as familiar as possible with the layout and format of the test is likely to save you time and prevent you from panicking when it comes to sitting the real-thing. As the saying goes; prior preparation precedes a positive performance!

Communicating your GMAT score
After all the hard work is done, the only thing left to do is share your score with us! It is important that you arrange with GMAC to make your GMAT result accessible to Cass Business School (Institution Code 2C2-RO-84 – Masters in Science), so that we can verify your score online.

If you are submitting your GMAT score at the time of application then you should upload a scanned copy of the report to the online application form.

If you are submitting your GMAT score later in the application process, please email a scanned copy of your test-report (the unofficial copy is acceptable) to your admissions officer. We can then verify this score online.

Hopefully this post has given you more information about the GMAT test, and the role it plays in our admissions criteria. If you have any doubts, please feel free to contact one of the admissions team who will be happy to help.

Finally, for all those preparing to take the GMAT test over the coming weeks, we wish you the best of luck!

Last updated 31 January 2017


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