Standardized Test Scores (GMAT and GRE)


We require applicants to the Executive MBA Program to submit a GMAT or GRE score as part of the application process. It is also worth pointing out that we do offer a waiver option for these as well. The process for applying for a GMAT/GRE waiver can be found HERE. As noted in multiple places on our website and application

“Very senior level managers, usually with twelve or more years of management experience may be granted an exemption from the GMAT/GRE requirement. Examples might include CEOs, Managing Directors, CFOs, and Division Heads etc. A waiver may also be considered for a candidate whose work experience and training indicate a high level of quantitative and analytical skill and an ability to apply those skills to a rigorous and analytical MBA Program. Examples might include: Treasurer or Chief Accounting Officer, or a CFA, or a candidate possessing another advanced degree or diploma in a quantitative field. The criteria above are not meant to be exhaustive and candidates who believe they are able to provide evidence of similar quality not listed are encouraged to speak to an admissions representative.”

The most common question we get with regards to the test scores is “what score do I need for admission?” The answer is that we don’t know what score YOU need for admission.

This is probably the best place to talk about holistic application review. When you hear someone say that we take a holistic approach to reviewing applications that simply means that all pieces of the application are considered.

It is easy to imagine a place where some sort of formula can be applied to admission, for example:
GMAT score ÷ GPA * Years of Experience = Admission or Denial

We don’t do that. Far from it. We specifically use the GMAT/GRE score to help us determine your ability to manage the academic rigor of the program. There is a fair amount of research showing that these scores, when used properly, can help predict an individual’s ability to succeed in an MBA program. We use these scores in combinations with your previous academic work as well as what you’re doing day-to-day in your job to help make this determination.

Before I end I want to share two very common messages we receive and our perspective on each.

1.) “I don’t have time to study and take a GMAT exam.”

--- Then you don’t have time to be a student in the Executive MBA Program at Chicago Booth.

2.) “I’m no good at standardized tests.”

--- While we are sensitive and responsive to diagnosed learning disabilities please recognize that you are going to be evaluated through quizzes and exams as a student here as well.

Taking the exam(s) is rarely fun. However it is an important part of putting together a complete picture for us to evaluate in your application.

I hope this helps!