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MBA in Canada without GMAT

Are you interested in pursuing an MBA in Canada but hesitant about taking the GMAT exam? You're in luck! Many Canadian business schools now offer MBA in Canada without GMAT. Masters in Business Administration program in Canada are highly respected and provide a wide range of specialisations. The good news is that many Canadian Business Schools offer programs without requiring students to take the GMAT entrance exam. This means that students can choose from various types of MBA programs, including online, executive, accelerated, and traditional programs.

Suppose you're considering pursuing an MBA degree in Canada but want to avoid taking the GMAT exam. In that case, you might be interested in exploring some of the top business schools that offer GMAT waivers for their MBA programs. These include HEC Montréal, the University of British Columbia (Vancouver), and the University of Northern British Columbia. To be eligible for an MBA program without GMAT, students must have an undergraduate degree in a relevant field such as marketing or business administration.

Universities offering MBA in Canada without GMAT

mba in canada without gmat

If you're looking to pursue an MBA without GMAT in Canada, you'll be happy to know that there are many top universities offering this option. These programs provide a great opportunity to enhance your career prospects without the added stress of taking the GMAT. With a range of specializations and flexible study options, top MBA without GMAT universities in Canada are becoming increasingly popular among students.

University Canada West

University Canada West (UCW) is a recognised university offering an MBA program without a GMAT requirement. UCW's MBA program focuses on developing students' leadership skills by providing practical knowledge in various fields, such as marketing, finance, and operations management. Moreover, UCW's MBA program has been designed to meet the needs of working professionals who want to advance their careers while studying.

York University

The Schulich School of Business at York University provides an innovative curriculum combining theoretical knowledge and practical experience. Its York Schulich MBA program has been consistently ranked among the best in Canada by various publications such as Forbes and Financial Times. Schulich also offers several specialisations, such as finance, marketing, entrepreneurship, and social sector management.

The University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC)

The University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) MBA provides students with practical knowledge to apply in their professional careers. The program offers a focus on sustainability and social responsibility, preparing graduates to make a positive impact on the world while achieving success in their careers. 

The school’s location, British Columbia, also offers students unique opportunities to explore the region's natural beauty and diverse culture. With small class sizes, students develop strong relationships with their professors and peers, which can be beneficial when seeking career opportunities after graduation.

Vancouver Island University

Vancouver Island University (VIU) is another recognised university that offers an MBA program without a GMAT requirement. VIU's MBA program prepares students for leadership roles in various industries such as healthcare, tourism, and technology.

Moreover, VIU's MBA program has been designed to meet the needs of working professionals who want to advance their careers while studying. This approach allows students to balance their work and academic commitments.

Thompson Rivers University

Thompson Rivers University (TRU) is another university that offers an MBA program without a GMAT requirement. In addition, TRU's MBA program provides students with flexibility by offering both online and on-campus courses. The curriculum has been designed to meet the needs of working professionals who want to advance their careers while studying. This approach allows students to balance their work and academic commitments.

The Alberta School of Business

The University of Alberta's Alberta School of Business offers an MBA program without a GMAT requirement, preparing students for global careers in finance, marketing, and entrepreneurship. Moreover, the school's small class sizes allow professors to provide individual attention to each student. This approach helps students develop strong relationships with their professors and peers, which can be beneficial when seeking career opportunities after graduation.

Ivey Business School

Among these universities, the Ivey Business School at Western University is considered one of the best universities for an MBA in Canada without GMAT requirements. Ivey MBA program provides students with practical knowledge in various fields, such as finance, marketing, operations management, and strategy.

Moreover, Ivey's case-based learning approach helps students develop critical thinking skills by analysing real-world business problems. This approach prepares them for leadership roles in various industries.

Eligibility & Requirements for MBA without GMAT

MBA candidates can apply for programs in Canada without submitting GMAT scores. This is good news for those interested in pursuing an MBA but want to avoid taking the GMAT. However, other qualifications and the school's specific admission requirements may be considered instead of GMAT scores.

Some MBA programs in Canada may waive the GMAT requirement based on specific criteria such as significant work experience or an advanced degree. However, not all programs offer this waiver, so thorough research is necessary. In case of ineligibility for a waiver, alternative assessments or documentation may be required such as an internal assessment test or submit results from standardised tests like GRE or LSAT.

The application procedure for MBA programs in Canada without GMAT requirements typically involves submitting;

  • Official Transcripts
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Personal Statement
  • Proof of English Language Proficiency
  • Work Experience
  • A minimum GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • 2 years of full-time work experience

It's important to note that each program may have different requirements and deadlines, so applicants must stay organised and keep track of all necessary documents.

Other qualifications, such as work experience and academic achievements, may be considered by Canadian universities when evaluating MBA applicants. These factors provide a more well-rounded view of the candidate's abilities and potential success in the program. For example, an applicant with significant work experience in a related field could demonstrate their ability to succeed in an MBA program without taking the GMAT.

In addition to meeting academic and professional prerequisites, many MBA programs also require applicants to submit essays or personal statements explaining their goals and motivations for pursuing an advanced degree in business administration. These essays are typically used by admissions committees to evaluate candidates' writing skills and assess their fit with the school's culture and values.

Another key factor that admissions committees consider when evaluating candidates is their letters of recommendation. It is important to choose recommenders who can provide detailed insights into the applicant's character or abilities or can speak specifically about their skills, achievements, and potential as a business leader rather than simply offering generic praise.

Remember that getting into an MBA program without a GMAT score isn't necessarily easier. Some schools waive the GMAT, but all applicants must meet rigorous academic and professional standards, along with few admission requirements such as a minimum GPA or work experience or other specific qualifications for candidates i.e. professional designation such as CPA (Certified Public Accountant) or CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst).

Applying for an MBA program in Canada without the GMAT requires careful research and preparation of application materials. Well-written essays, strong letters of recommendation, and other supporting documents will help applicants get into their preferred program by demonstrating strengths, achievements, and business leadership potential.

Comparison of GMAT and Non-GMAT MBA Programs

GMAT scores are required for most MBA programs in Canada, but there are also non-GMAT MBA programs available. Choosing between these two options can be difficult, as both have their own advantages and disadvantages. In this section, we will compare GMAT and non-GMAT MBA programs in Canada to help you make an informed decision.

Admission Requirements

GMAT scores are often used as a benchmark for admissions and scholarships in MBA programs. Most universities require a minimum score of 550-600 for admission into their graduate programs. However, some universities offer non-GMAT MBA programs that have different admission requirements such as work experience or GRE scores.

Non-GMAT MBA programs may be more suitable for individuals who do not want to take the GMAT exam or those who did not perform well on the exam. These programs may also be ideal for individuals who have extensive work experience but lack a high GMAT score.


Non-GMAT MBA programs may offer more flexibility in terms of study time and program length. Many of these programs allow students to complete their degree at their own pace and provide part-time options that allow students to continue working while pursuing their degree.

On the other hand, traditional GMAT-based MBA programs usually require full-time attendance with fixed schedules that can be challenging for working professionals. This is because these courses follow a structured curriculum designed to prepare students for leadership roles in the business world.


When considering the cost of an MBA program, it's important to check the price of both GMAT and non-GMAT programs. Non-GMAT-based courses may appear cheaper than traditional ones due to lower tuition fees; however, this does not necessarily mean they are less expensive overall.

Non-GMAT-based courses may require additional expenses like travel costs or accommodation if they're located outside your city or region. Additionally, some employers prefer candidates with degrees from prestigious universities which might only offer traditional GMAT-based courses.

Scholarships and Funding Options

mba in canada without gmat

Schulich MBA offers scholarships for students who meet their eligibility criteria. Schulich School of Business is one of the top-ranked business schools in Canada, and they offer various funding options for MBA students. Tuition fees for MBA in Canada without GMAT can be high, but scholarships can help offset costs.

Schulich MBA Scholarships

The Schulich School of Business offers a variety of scholarships to their MBA students. These scholarships are awarded based on merit, financial need, and other factors. The amount of the scholarship varies depending on the scholarship program and the student's qualifications. Some of the popular scholarship programs offered by Schulich are Entrance Scholarship, International Student Scholarship. Women in Leadership Excellence Scholarship, Social Impact Award, among others.

Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Program

The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) program is a great option for funding an MBA in Canada without GMAT. This program provides financial assistance to qualified individuals pursuing an MBA degree or other graduate-level business programs.

The program offers a variety of scholarships that cover tuition fees and exam registration fees. To be eligible for these scholarships, applicants must meet certain requirements such as academic excellence, work experience, and financial need.

Government Loans

In addition to scholarships and grants offered by universities and private organizations, government loans are also available to finance an MBA degree in Canada without GMAT. The Canadian government offers various loan programs such as Canada Student Loans Program and Canada Apprentice Loan, among others.

Private Loans

Private loans are also an option for funding an MBA degree in Canada without GMAT. Private lenders offer various loan programs such as 
Personal Lines of Credit: These loans provide flexible financing options for students pursuing higher education.
Student Lines of Credit: These loans are specifically designed for students and offer lower interest rates than personal lines of credit.

Benefits of Pursuing MBA in Canada without GMAT

More Accessible

One of the most significant benefits of pursuing an MBA in Canada without GMAT is that it becomes more accessible to a wider range of students. The GMAT is a standardized test that assesses analytical, writing, quantitative, verbal, and reading skills in written English for use in admission to graduate management programs. 

However, not all students excel at standardized tests or have the time and resources to prepare for them. By removing the GMAT requirement, universities can attract a more diverse student body with a range of backgrounds and experiences.

Saves Time and Money

Another advantage of pursuing an MBA in Canada without GMAT is that it saves both time and money. Preparing for the GMAT exam can take months and cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars in test fees, study materials, tutoring sessions, and other expenses. 

Moreover, some students may need to retake the exam several times to achieve their desired score or submit multiple applications to different schools that require different minimum scores. By eliminating the GMAT requirement, universities can streamline their application process and reduce barriers to entry for prospective students.

Focus on Other Strengths

Without the pressure of the GMAT exam, students can focus on highlighting their other strengths such as work experience, academic achievements, leadership skills, extracurricular activities, community service projects, research publications or presentations.

These factors are often more relevant than test scores when evaluating candidates' potential for success in business school and beyond. For example, employers value practical skills such as problem-solving abilities; critical thinking; communication skills; teamwork; adaptability; creativity; initiative-taking; risk-taking; resilience; ethical decision-making over theoretical knowledge alone.

More Diverse Student Body

By removing the GMAT requirement from its admissions criteria universities encourage a more diverse student body with a range of backgrounds and experiences. This diversity enriches classroom discussions by bringing different perspectives on global issues like climate change or social justice issues like gender equality.

Moreover, it prepares students for the multicultural and multinational business environments that they will face in their future careers. By interacting with peers from different cultures, students learn to appreciate cultural differences, build cross-cultural communication skills, and develop global mindsets.

Greater Flexibility

Many universities that offer MBA programs without GMAT requirements also offer greater flexibility in terms of course schedules and program lengths. For example, some schools allow students to complete their degrees online or on a part-time basis while working full-time jobs or pursuing other interests. This flexibility enables students to balance their academic goals with their personal and professional responsibilities without sacrificing either one.

Better Career Prospects

Pursuing an MBA in Canada without GMAT does not limit career prospects as many employers value work experience, skills, and achievements over test scores. In fact, some employers prefer candidates who have practical experience in the field rather than just theoretical knowledge from textbooks. Furthermore, some industries such as entrepreneurship or social innovation may require more creativity than analytical skills which are tested by the GMAT exam.

Challenges in MBA Admission without GMAT

mba in canada without gmat

Canadian students pursuing MBA without GMAT face challenges in proving their academic excellence through their GPA and academic transcripts. While the GMAT score is not mandatory for admission to most Canadian business schools, it still holds significant weightage in the evaluation process. Without a high GMAT score, students need to rely on other factors such as their undergraduate GPA and academic record to demonstrate their potential for success in an MBA program.

However, this can be a challenge for some students who may have had a low GPA or faced personal or academic setbacks during their undergraduate studies. In such cases, it becomes crucial for them to showcase their strengths through other means such as relevant work experience, extracurricular activities, leadership skills, and letters of recommendation.

International students pursuing MBA in Canada without GMAT are required to prove their English language proficiency through IELTS (International English Language Testing System) or TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language). This can be an additional hurdle for non-native English speakers who may struggle with the language barrier. Even if they have completed their previous education in English, they may still need to take these tests if they do not meet the exemption criteria set by the universities.

Moreover, these tests can be expensive and time-consuming, adding to the financial burden of international students who are already paying higher tuition fees than domestic students. To overcome this challenge, some universities offer language preparation courses or waive off the language requirement for applicants who have completed their education in certain countries where English is the primary language of instruction.

Pursuing a part-time MBA without GMAT in Canada may provide students with an alternative option if they cannot commit to a full-time program due to work or personal obligations. However, even in part-time programs that do not require GMAT scores, students still need to prove their language proficiency and academic record through other means such as CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) certification or professional experience.


mba in canada without gmat

In conclusion, those who want to advance their careers but don't want to take the GMAT should consider an MBA in Canada without GMAT. Rotman MBA, Ivey Business School, and TRU are among the top Canadian universities that offer this program.

MBA in Canada without GMAT applications are similar to others. Admission requirements vary from university to university. Some universities require work experience. Students must submit transcripts, resumes, essays, recommendations, and other university-required documents. If students don't meet criteria, some universities may add credits or semesters.

Know Your Author
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Rohit Rajaram
Study Abroad Expert
Rohit is a results-driven individual with a strong background in Education Mentorship, Program Management and Business Development. Holding a Master's degree in Management from ESCP Business School in Paris, Rohit combines academic excellence with extensive industry experience. Throughout his career, Rohit has consistently delivered exceptional results, driving sales, increasing turnover, and achieving targets. Known for his strategic acumen, Rohit formulates and executes successful business strategies, enhancing operational quality, customer satisfaction and key bottonline drivers. As the Co-Founder of MiM-Essay, a leading Early Career Degrees application consulting company, Rohit has successfully mentored over 10,000+ students, enabling them to secure admissions in top-ranked schools worldwide with significant scholarships. Under his leadership, the company has maintained high-quality service and exceptional client satisfaction rates. With expertise in analytics, product development and business excellence, Rohit has successfully driven the success of various initiatives. Committed to constant innovation, he is expanding the company's offerings by introducing digital and technology-powered products for comprehensive education solutions.
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