Cass MSc Admissions

Advice and Information from the MSc Admissions team

The GMAT: to take or not to take?

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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

59 Comments

  1. If I have submitted my GMAT score report when I filled the application form, should I still arrange GMAC to deliver my GMAT result?

    • Hi Xiao
      Thanks for your query! Yes, even if you have uploaded a copy of your GMAT score report with your application, we still need to be able to verify it online. In order to do this you need to arrange with GMAC to make your score report available to Cass Masters Programme – our GMAT code is 2C2-R0-84. If you are made an offer and you have not made your score available to us at that time, it would be a condition of the offer.
      I hope this helps!
      MSc Admissions Team

  2. Is the GMAT needed for entry into the new Msc in Marketing strategy and Innovation? Kindly advise. Thanks

    • Hi Anim
      Thanks for your question! The GMAT is not a compulsory entry requirement for any of our courses, so please feel free to submit an application without it. For more information on the entry requirements for MSc Marketing Strategy and Innovation, please see our website.
      I hope this helps – please let us know if you have any further queries.
      MSc Admissions Team

  3. Can I take take GRE test instead? since I have already got a decent GRE score.

    • Hi Zhijie
      Thanks for your question! Although we favour the GMAT over the GRE, if you have already taken the GRE you are welcome to submit your score with your application.
      I hope this helps – please let us know if you have any further queries.
      MSc Admissions Team

      • Thanks for you prompt reply.
        Further, will you consider the GMAT equivalent of my GRE score since there is such a table on the ETS showing that?

        Best regards,
        Zhijie Kong

        • Hi Zhijie
          Yes, although it is not a substitute for taking the GMAT, we would use the comparison tool to find the GMAT equivalent of the GRE scores.
          I hope this helps.
          MSc Admissions Team

  4. Hi, I’m taking the GMAT for my application for MSc Finance soon, just want to clarify one thing: is it a zero or a letter O in the institutional code is 2C2- RO-84?

    • Hi Jean
      Thanks for your message! I can confirm that it is the letter O.
      Good luck with the GMAT!
      MSc Admissions Team

  5. For the MSc. Investment Management program, can I substitute CFA for the GMAT since I’m currently level II candidate in the CFA program.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Hi Jillian
      Thanks for your question! The GMAT is not a compulsory entry requirement for any of our courses, so you are most welcome to submit your CFA results rather than taking the GMAT.
      I hope this helps, and we look forward to receiving your application.
      MSc Admissions Team

  6. Hi, I would like to apply for MSc for Marketing or Management.
    I already have both GRE and GMAT score and both are similar level. In this case, what test score would be better to submit for apply?

    Plus, if GMAT or GRE score is not decent enough(about 600), would it be better not to submit?

    • Hi Dasom
      Thanks for your question! We prefer the GMAT, and normally look for a score of at least 600, so you would be welcome to submit your GMAT score. You can upload the GRE score too if you wish.
      I hope this helps. Please let us know if you have any further queries.
      MSc Admissions Team

  7. How about CFA level one? How do you weigh against candidates with level one passed and those who possessed a decent score in the GMAT?

    • Hi Chris
      That is a good question! We don’t make direct comparisons between applicants based on whether they submit a GMAT or a CFA result, but if you want to submit one of them the exam you choose to take might depend on which course you are applying for. If you are applying for one of our finance-related courses, the CFA Level 1 would normally be more relevant than the GMAT, but a good GMAT score is still acceptable. The CFA exams are also useful to take if you are applying for a finance-related course but do not have much evidence of quantitative skills or financial knowledge in your undergraduate studies. If you are applying for a more qualitative subject, the GMAT might be more relevant as it includes an analytical writing component.
      I hope this helps. Please let us know if you have any further queries.
      MSc Admissions Team

  8. Hi, I would like to apply for the MSC in Investment Management and I’d like to know the following: if I send you my application without a GMAT score available and you accept it, but you request me to submit a certain GMAT score, in how much time should I need to provide it? Will there be a deadline? I’m asking this because I’m working in BNP Paribas in Italy so I would need to know whether I have enough time to prepare adequately.
    Thanks in advance!

    • Hi Andrea
      Thanks for your question! If a GMAT is a condition of the offer, you would normally have to provide the final result by the summer. If you require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK you should aim to submit the score by the end of July at the latest (although the earlier the better, in order to have more time to secure the visa). If you do not need a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, you should aim to submit the result by mid-August at the latest. With all offer conditions, it is better to submit the required documents as soon as you can in order to upgrade your offer to unconditional.
      I hope this helps. We look forward to receiving your application.
      MSc Admissions Team

  9. What is the minimum Work Experience that your college needs for the Msc in Finance and Management courses? I am a fresher having NO work experience yet, So can I apply for these Msc courses?

    • Hi Ankur
      Thanks for your question! Work experience is not a requirement for any of our full-time MSc degrees; in fact, for our MSc Management there is a three-year cap on work experience. You are welcome to apply without work experience, although if you have any internships please include these on your CV.
      I hope this helps. We look forward to receiving your application.
      MSc Admissions

  10. Hi , i would like to apply for MSc in Actuarial science , is it required to have a certificate of GMAT before submitting my online application , or will be sent later on . And is it online examination or available all over the world .
    thanks a lot

    • Hi Emmanuel
      Thanks for your question! The GMAT is not a compulsory entry requirement for any of our MSc degrees. However, a score of at least 600 can enhance an application. If you feel that you need to boost your application then it is best to take the GMAT before applying so that the admissions panel can take your GMAT scores into account. The GMAT is a global exam with test centres all over the world. Please see the GMAT website for further information.
      I hope this helps.
      MSc Admissions Team

  11. I got have a number of questions:-

    1. What is the application fees for Msc Risk Management & Insurance
    2. if one has over 5 years of continuous risk management and insurance experience does he or she needs GMAT exams?
    3. if one holds a Diploma of insurance with Chartered Insurance institute (CII) (UK) do they need GMAT exams?
    4. if one holds the same diploma in insurance are they any extemptions they can get when they enroll for the Msc Risk Management & Insurance.

    Regards,

    • Hi Michael
      Thanks for your questions! We do not charge an application fee for our courses. For up-to-date information on course fees please see the information on our website. The GMAT is not a compulsory entry requirement for any of our MSc degrees, so please feel free to apply without it. There is a fast-track January intake for successful applicants who already hold a Chartered Insurance Institute Advanced Diploma completed in the past 5 years, giving exemptions from some core courses of the Cass MSc. To be eligible for the ‘fast-track’ route applicants must have completed at least 70% of their Advanced Diploma through direct examination with the CII. For more information please see here.
      I hope this helps. If you have further queries about the course please do not hesitate to contact the admissions officer for the course.
      MSc Admissions Team

  12. Hi,
    I had 2 questions .. I was looking at the Msc in Financial mathematics and Quant. I appeared for gmat but the score is not that good ( below 600). I’m planning to reappear for gmat in January. Is gmat score above 600 is mandatory criteria to get admitted ?
    Also I see degree in numeric discipline is the requirement for Msc in Quant. Could you pls help me understand what all course would be considered as degree in numeric discipline? Would FRM Level 1 suffice this requirement?

    • Hi Trupti
      Thanks for your questions! The GMAT is not a compulsory entry requirement for any of our MSc degrees, so you can apply without it. If you do submit a score, I recommend that you only do so if you achieve a score of 600 or higher. Regarding your second question, for MSc Financial Mathematics the admissions tutor would be looking for evidence of previous study in calculus, algebra, probability, differential equations, mathematical methods and/or statistics. For MSc Quantitative Finance students are expected to have a strong quantitative background in a subject such as mathematics, physics or engineering. The panel can consider applications from those who have studied a degree in computer science, economics or finance, but the degree must have included a significant focus on areas such as micro- and macroeconomics, and statistics-based modules.
      For more information on the quants courses you can contact the admissions officer directly – contact details are on our website.
      I hope this helps!
      MSc Admissions Team

  13. Hi,
    Is it correct that only the real GMAT Score is necessary, and that you can therefore skip the Essay and the Integrated Reasoning?

    • Hi Florian
      Thanks for your question! You do need to take all sections of the test, including the Analytical Writing and Integrated Reasoning. For some courses at Cass Business School the quantitative section of the GMAT test will be the most important, but the other sections are still important (particularly for courses with a more qualitative element).
      I hope this helps. Please let us know if you have any further queries.
      MSc Admissions Team

  14. Dear Sir or Madam:

    I had undertaken GMAT as score is 640 which I am not satisfied, because I just prepared it for about two weeks. I would like to take another GMAT in next few month, should I submit this score first or waitting a better one later? Is that possible I could get a condition offer which indicate the minimum GMAT score I should have.

    • Dear Rick
      Thanks for your question! We normally look for around 600 in the GMAT, so you are welcome to upload your current GMAT with your application. However, if you wish to improve your score before you apply please wait until you have the new scores and then submit your online application. We will be opening for 2018 intake applications from around November onwards.
      I hope this helps!
      MSc Admissions Team

  15. Hi,

    I took GMAT and got a score of 620 (Q48,V27). I am interested in MSc. Banking and International Finance. Is my score competitive enough or should I improve it ? What is the average GMAT for the class of Banking and International Finance ?

    • Hi Abhilash
      Thanks for your question! The GMAT is not a compulsory entry requirement for any of our MSc degrees, but you are welcome to submit a GMAT score when you apply. We are normally looking for at least 600 overall, with at least 50% in the quantitative section. For the past couple of years the average GMAT score on MSc Banking & International Finance has been 650.
      I hope this helps.
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  16. Hey i want to master in entreprenurship
    My gmat score is 650
    But ny undergraduate percentage in india is 6% as my university does not award more than 67%
    Do i have chance in getting admission in master in entreprenurship course

    • Hi Rahul
      Thanks for contacting us! The best thing to do would be to submit an application online, where you can upload your degree documents and GMAT score report. The admissions panel can then review your documents and make an informed decision.
      I hope this helps.
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions

  17. Hi,
    Is the GMAT needed for entry into the MSc International Business?
    Thanks

    • Hi Alex
      Thanks for your question. The GMAT is not a compulsory entry requirement for any of our MSc degrees. However, a score of at least 600 can enhance an application. You are welcome to submit an application without the GMAT and if the admissions panel wants you to take the GMAT it could be a condition of an offer.
      I hope this helps.
      MSc Admissions Team

  18. Hi, I get it that GMAT is not a compulsory entry requirement but I could be asked to give GMAT if the admission pannel feels the need to, so my question is how long will I get to give the exam and submit the scores?

    • Hi Bhavya
      Thanks for your question! This will depend on when you submit an application. If a GMAT is made a condition of an offer, we would normally recommend that you submit your GMAT score to us no later than July, but if you require a visa to study in the UK you might wish to submit it earlier so that you can upgrade your offer to unconditional earlier. Therefore, if you submit an application at the start of the process (from November onwards) you will have more time to prepare for and take the GMAT, if required.
      I hope this helps!
      MSc Admissions Team

  19. Hi,

    If I finish uploading my documents and applying about 10th of November, when would I get the results of my application?

    • Hi Suna
      Thanks for your question! We normally advise that it takes between 3-6 weeks on average for a decision to be made.
      I hope this helps.
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  20. Hi
    This is Bharath, is it possible to submit my GRE score instead of GMAT? thanks

    • Hi Bharath
      Thanks for your question! We do prefer the GMAT rather than the GRE, but if you have already taken a GRE then you are welcome to submit your score when you apply online.
      I hope this helps!
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  21. Hi! I want to apply for marketing and innovation Mcs for 2019/2020 I want to know when can I apply and where and what are the documents needed to get an unconditional offer?

    • Hi Nahla
      Thanks for your question! Applications for 2019 intake will be open from this afternoon onwards. When applications open you will be able to apply for MSc Marketing Strategy and Innovation on the course page – https://www.cass.city.ac.uk/study/masters/courses/marketing-strategy-and-innovation. When you apply please submit your degree transcript, a list of modules you are taking in your final year (if you are still studying), CV, and personal statement. Two references and evidence of English proficiency (if necessary) can arrive a bit later. Please see the course page for more information. If you are made an offer, it will state which documents you need to send us in order to upgrade your conditional offer to an unconditional offer.
      I hope this helps!
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  22. Hi, I just took the GMAT and unfortunately received a grade lower than I expected. I got a 660 with a 45 in the quant section. I was wondering if this score will hurt my chances of admission into the MSc Finance program or if any score above a 600 will enhance my application.
    Thanks!

    • Hi Diana
      Thanks for your question! The GMAT is not a compulsory entry requirement for our courses, but a well-balanced score of at least 600 overall might enhance an application. For MSc Finance the admissions panel would normally be looking for a score above 50% (i.e. you performed better than 50% of other test-takers). If you are happy with your percentile scores, please feel free to upload your current GMAT score when you apply online.
      I hope this helps!
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  23. Hi, I was wondering how likely it is that I will have to take GMAT or GRE?
    I have a first class BA honours degree from university in the UK but I want to apply for a Masters course in Management.

    Thank you for your reply in advance

    • Hi Anna

      Thanks for your question! All applications are assessed on a case-by-case basis, and therefore I’m afraid it is not possible to comment on your individual situation. Generally speaking, a GMAT score of at least 600 will enhance an application, but if an applicant has high grades and a strong application overall then it is not normally required. You are welcome to submit an application without the GMAT and we will let you know if the Admissions Panel require you to take it.

      If an applicant has already taken the GRE they are welcome to submit their score, but (if applicable) we only make offers conditional on taking the GMAT, not the GRE.

      I hope this helps!
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  24. Hello!

    I have several questions regarding the GMAT score.

    First of all, I currently have my GRE score, not GMAT.
    In this case, is it possible to submit my GRE score instead of GMAT?

    In addition, after I checked my converted score from GRE to GMAT,
    I got over 600 (for quant section, I got 162 out of 170).
    In this case, am I still competitive to apply for either in Finance or Business Analytics?

    I will be looking forward to your reply.

    Thank you.

    • Hi Diana
      Thanks for your question! We prefer the GMAT, but if you have already taken the GRE then please feel free to add your score report when you submit your course application. The GMAT/GRE is not a compulsory entry requirement for any of our courses, but a GMAT score of at least 600 (or its equivalent GRE score) can enhance an application.
      I hope this helps – please let us know if you have any further queries!
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  25. Hi , Is the GMAT or GRE needed for entry into the new Msc in Insurance and risk management ? Kindly advise. Thanks

    • Hi Abdulaziz
      Thanks for your question! The GMAT/GRE are not compulsory in order to apply for any of our MSc degrees. However, if you have already taken the GMAT a score of around 600 could enhance an application. If you apply without a GMAT and the admissions panel would like you to take one, it could form a condition of an offer.
      I hope this helps!
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  26. MSc Admission Team,

    I read the most information above, but I still have several questions.

    First, I have a GRE score. If I submit GRE, will you offer the conditional offer to me with suggesting me to retake GRE for better score or recommending me to prepare the GMAT? Secondly, I major in accounting and have US CPA license. Will it strengthen my application? Moreover, because US CPA examination also test candidate with concept in financial management and corporate finance, is it equivalent or more relevant than GMAT?

    I am looking forward to your reply.
    Thank you!

    • Hi Pierce

      Thanks for your question! The GMAT/GRE is not a compulsory document to submit with your application for any of our MSc degrees. However, if you already hold a GRE score please feel free to submit it along with your application. All decisions are made by the admissions panel upon receipt of your application form and supporting documents, so I’m afraid we cannot comment on your individual situation. If the panel require you to provide a new score, then we might request that you take the GMAT as part of your offer condition (we do not normally make offers conditional upon taking the GRE). Alternatively, the panel might not need a GMAT score at all.

      The admissions panel will put most emphasis on the grades you achieved in your Bachelor’s degree, particularly in subjects that are most relevant to the MSc degree you wish to submit an application for. They also pay attention to the personal statement and anything relevant in your CV. Professional qualifications might enhance an application, but may not necessarily compensate if a Bachelor’s degree doesn’t meet our requirements.

      We will be accepting applications for 2020 intake from around November onwards, at which point you can submit your application online along with your supporting documents.

      I hope this helps!

      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  27. Hi

    I’m a CFA Level 3 candidate with 1.5 years of work experience in Audit and Finance.

    Can I ask if CFA Level 2 passed would add weightage to my application for MS Quantitative Finance? Or should I still need to appear for GMAT?

    Also, since I graduated in 2017, would it hurt my chances of admission that I’ve completed my UG about 2 years ago.

    Thanks

    • Hi Amarprit

      Thanks for getting in contact! It is hard to answer your query as we do not have enough information about your background. We are normally looking for a UK upper second class degree or above, or the equivalent from an overseas institution. Your academic background should be in a highly quantitative subject such as mathematics, physics, engineering, economics or computer science and having covered areas such as statistics, linear algebra and calculus.

      You can apply with your undergraduate degree documents and proof of CFA Level 2 pass. If the panel require you to take a GMAT we will let you know.

      It is fine if you have a few years’ work experience.

      I hope this helps. We will be accepting applications for 2020 intake from around November onwards.

      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

  28. Hi,

    I would like to ask a very important question.
    I had a conditional offer from Cass for the academic year of 2019-2020; however, I failed to meet my conditions and could not attend. Considering that I am done with studying, will having a decent GMAT score boost my chances at Cass? Because my transcripts are going to be the same as year last year as well as my academic references.

    Thanks,
    Eliza

    • Hi Eliza
      Thanks for your question! A high GMAT score can enhance an application, although whether it is sufficient to receive a new offer will vary from case-to-case. I’m afraid we are not able to comment on individual applications, but if you wish to apply again for 2020 intake please contact the admissions officer after we open for applications. You can then send them any further documents you feel would enhance your application, such as the GMAT, and they can retrieve your previous file from our archives and add the new documents. The admissions panel will then review your application and make a decision.
      I hope this helps!
      Kind regards
      MSc Admissions Team

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