Harvard Business School is one of the most prestigious business schools in the world. It is a dream for many aspiring business students to earn a degree from Harvard.
However, the application process can be overwhelming, and one of the most common questions is whether Harvard accepts GMAT or GRE scores.
The answer is yes; Harvard Business School accepts both GMAT and GRE scores. Applicants need to meet specific requirements. The GMAT or GRE is a prerequisite for admission, and applicants must take the test within the specified timeframes.
Additionally, Harvard Business School does not have a preference for one test over the other. If an applicant submits multiple test scores, Harvard will only consider the score from the highest single test sitting.
Harvard Business School only accepts the regular GMAT or GRE for admission. The new GMAT Focus exam isn’t allowed since it comes out after this year’s Round 1 deadline.
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Also, they only take the online versions of the GMAT or GRE, and you must take the test in person at an assigned center.
Harvard’s Standardized Test Policy
Harvard University is one of the most prestigious universities in the world, and it has a rigorous admissions process. Harvard requires applicants to submit standardized test scores as part of this process.
The two tests that Harvard accepts are the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).
Harvard’s standardized test policy varies by program for the two-year master’s degree programs, which include the Master in Public Policy (MPP), Master in Public Administration/International Development (MPA/ID), and Master in Public Administration (MPA), GRE or GMAT scores are required.
However, standardized test scores are optional for the Mid-Career MPA program (MC/MPA).
Harvard’s standardized test policy also varies by applicant. For mid-career applicants who have been out of school for a significant period, GRE or GMAT scores are less of a predictor of success in quantitative coursework.
Therefore, standardized test scores are not required for these applicants, but they may choose to submit them for consideration in the application process.
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Harvard’s Admissions & Financial Aid team has addressed some frequently asked questions about the standardized test policy. The latest GRE or GMAT test date that Harvard will accept for the two-year master’s degree programs is the application deadline for the program.
However, applicants are encouraged to take the test as early as possible to ensure that scores are available by the application deadline.
In addition to standardized test scores, Harvard considers various other factors in the admissions process, including academic transcripts, letters of recommendation, personal essays, and work experience.
The admissions committee thoroughly assesses applicants by taking a comprehensive view of their application, considering various aspects.
GMAT or GRE for Harvard
When applying to Harvard, prospective students may wonder whether they should take the GMAT or the GRE. The good news is that Harvard accepts both tests. However, it is essential to note that the admissions committee at Harvard does not have a preference for one test over the other.
The GMAT is a test that measures a student’s skills in analytical writing, integrated reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and verbal reasoning. The test assesses a student’s ability to think critically and solve problems, skills essential for business school success.
If a student decides to take the GMAT, they should aim for a score of at least 730 to be competitive for admission to Harvard. However, it is essential to note that the GMAT is just one factor the admissions committee considers when evaluating an application.
The GRE is another standardized test that measures a student’s verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and analytical writing skills. The test assesses a student’s ability to think critically and solve problems, skills essential for business school success.
If a student decides to take the GRE, they should aim for a score of at least 165 on the verbal and quantitative sections and a score of at least 5.0 on the analytical writing section to be competitive for admission to Harvard. However, as with the GMAT, the GRE is just one factor the admissions committee considers when evaluating an application.
Harvard Business School MBA Program
Harvard Business School (HBS) offers a highly competitive MBA program that attracts students worldwide. The program is designed to provide students with the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in business.
You need to meet specific requirements to get into the HBS MBA program. These include:
- Completion of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution
- GMAT or GRE test results
- English language test results if the applicant attended a non-English undergraduate program
- Written application, including essays and letters of recommendation
HBS does not have a preference between the GMAT and GRE, and applicants may submit scores from either test. If an applicant submits multiple test scores, HBS will only consider the highest single test sitting score.
HBS offers a unique program called 2+2, designed for college seniors interested in pursuing an MBA but wanting to gain work experience before enrolling in a graduate program.
Under the 2+2 program, students apply to HBS during their senior year of college. If accepted, they are guaranteed a place in the MBA program but must gain two years of work experience before enrolling.
The 2+2 program is an excellent chance for students interested in pursuing a career in business but want to gain real-world experience before committing to a graduate program.
Harvard Kenneth C. Griffin Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
The Harvard Kenneth C. Griffin Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) is the largest among Harvard University’s twelve graduate schools.
It offers numerous humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences graduate programs. GSAS provides a diverse range of master’s and Ph.D. programs, encompassing Anthropology and Statistics.
Test Scores for Master’s and PhD Programs
Securing admission to GSAS master’s or Ph.D. programs necessitates the submission of test scores. You can opt for either the GRE or the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).
It is important to note that some programs may require specific test scores or additional tests, so applicants should carefully review the requirements for their program of interest.
GSAS does not have a minimum test score requirement, but applicants are encouraged to aim for scores that are competitive with the average scores of admitted students.
Admitted students usually achieve an average verbal score of approximately 165 and a typical quantitative score of around 160 on the GRE. The average score for the GMAT is generally around 720 for admitted students.
English Proficiency Tests
Applicants from non-English speaking countries must provide scores from an English proficiency test. GSAS accepts scores from the TOEFL, the IELTS, and the Duolingo English Test.
The minimum required scores for each test are as follows:
- TOEFL: 100 (iBT)
- IELTS: 7.5
- Duolingo English Test: 135
Specific programs might necessitate higher scores. Therefore, applicants must examine the particular requirements of their chosen program thoroughly.
Harvard Business School lets you apply to its MBA program with either GMAT or GRE scores. You need a four-year undergraduate degree or its equivalent. If your undergrad program wasn’t in English, you must also provide English language test results.
The written application includes the following components:
- Employment history
- Educational history
- Test scores
The designated deadline requires applicants to submit all elements of the application.
Application deadlines for the upcoming academic year (2023-2024) are outlined below:
- Round 1: September 6, 2023
- Round 2: January 3, 2024
- Round 3: April 8, 2024
Applicants are encouraged to apply in the earlier rounds to increase their chances of admission. It is important to note that all application components, including test scores, must be submitted by the deadline.
Additional Documents for Application
When you apply to Harvard, you must send in more than just your application. These extra papers help the admissions folks get the complete picture of your school and work background, plus why you want to go for an MBA.
Transcripts and GPA
Harvard requires applicants to submit transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions they have attended. Admissions committees will review these transcripts to assess applicants’ academic performance and rigor.
In addition to transcripts, applicants must report their undergraduate GPA on the application. While there is no minimum GPA requirement, the average GPA for admitted students is typically around 3.7.
Resume and Recommendations
Applicants must also submit a resume highlighting their professional experience, skills, and achievements. This document should be tailored to the MBA program and demonstrate how the applicant’s background aligns with Harvard’s mission and values.
Include your resume and enlist two individuals who can provide recommendation letters affirming your professional skills and potential for success in an MBA program.
Essay and Statement of Purpose
The essay and statement of purpose are critical components of the application process and allow applicants to showcase their personality, goals, and motivations.
The essay prompts change from year to year but typically asks applicants to reflect on their past experiences and future aspirations.
The statement of purpose is a shorter document that outlines why the applicant is pursuing an MBA and what they hope to achieve through the program.
Other Admission Tests
In addition to the GMAT and GRE, Harvard Business School also accepts other admission tests from applicants. This section will cover the DAT and MCAT tests and the LSAT.
DAT and MCAT
The Dental Admission Test (DAT) and the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) are accepted for applicants to Harvard’s joint MD/MBA program. However, these tests are only accepted for applicants to the MBA program with help.
The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is not accepted as a substitute for the GMAT or GRE for admission to the MBA program at Harvard Business School. However, joint JD/MBA program applicants may submit LSAT scores instead of GMAT or GRE scores.
It is important to note that even if an applicant has taken the LSAT, they must still take the GMAT or GRE for admission to the MBA program at Harvard Business School.