Top Business School Offering GMAT Wavier for 2021 Intake
GMAT by GMAC, also known as the Graduate Management Admission Test, is a computer-based, multiple-choice, automatic aptitude adaptive exam. This exam is the first and foremost step while applying for a business program such as an MBA anywhere in the globe.
The exam tests the aspirant’s aptitude on the basis of 4 sections, i.e., Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative, and Verbal. The exam is very competitive and scoring the desired number of marks in order to even target the top business schools for the preliminary rounds is no easy feat.
This might come as a pleasant surprise escpecially for business school applicants to know that MBA programs from many prestigious universities are relinquishing GMAT from their selection criteria. Although before we proceed further, it should be noted that this condition is only applicable if the candidate meets the school’s selection criteria.
Under this specific selection criteria, the candidate is exempted from giving GMAT and is judged on his/her work experience, extracurriculars, courses and certifications, or other key highlights. This permit is known as a GMAT waiver and has recently been widely adopted by some of the most prominent schools.
This opens a plethora of opportunities for the many talented profiles who might have impressive profiles but are unable to score well in the exam. Unfortunately, such candidates even tend to drop their pursuit for a management degree as this concept is not well-known among them. With the global economy at an all-time low and unemployment rates soaring through the sky, a masters’ degree is no longer the added advantage it used to be.
Unlike yesteryears, it has become a necessity. However, a masters’ degree when secured from a prestigious college with a reputed alumni & organizational network, can make all the difference. Such colleges pave the aspirant’s way to numerous campus placements offering impressive packages. Therefore, through this blog, we aim to provide the aspirants targeting the 2021 intake, an all-detailed knowledge about the GMAT waiver.
Why Are Schools Offering this Wavier?
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, esteemed universities like Oxford, Imperial, INSEAD, London Business School, Wharton, Kellogg, and Carnegie Mellon have pushed the suspension of the standardized test for the 2021 intake. The surge in COVID cases all over the world has resulted in massive shut-downs of test centers. Some schools introduced the concept of giving the standardized exam from home but this has resulted in a lot of aspirants complaining about encountering technical failures during the test.
This limitation of online testing has made the parents and students concerned which in turn has resulted in undue pressure on schools to abolish the online system of giving the test. In addition, the GMAC system is now preventing students to give retakes for the exam. Hence, the GMAT waiver comes off as a corrective measure from the school out of pure conscience and empathetic concern for their students.
Should You Apply For a Wavier?
Although the schools are waiving off the criteria for the GMAT scores, this does not mean that they will forgo the other requirements as well. Hence, this in turn means that they will look for candidates with holistically developed profiles. The candidates applying for the waiver will have to meet a certain set of criteria set by the schools themselves. Some schools like Minnesota’s Carlson School have provided significant relaxations, like an MBA applicant would only require a GPA of 3.2 or above, while it being only 3.0 for candidates applying for a STEM course. On the other hand, some schools focus more on the candidate’s pragmatic exposure and allow them to waive the test if they possess a full-time work experience of a minimum of 3 to 4 years.
Moreover, other factors like a strong recommendation from a referee in your academic or professional tenure will give you the upper hand in receiving these permits. In order to increase your chances of getting admitted to these schools you would need to ensure that you have a very strong application (consisting of – Essays, LORs, and Resume) to back your profile. You need to showcase your journey, what makes you different from your peers, and how you are a great value addition to the school. A strong application increases your chances of acceptance by up to 30%.
In your professional experience, you need to emphasize on your leadership roles and major projects of your work and how these experiences helped to develop and further groom your skills and knowledge. Presence of big brands in your internships or full-time jobs would be like a cherry on the cake.
Since, in this Covid inflicted scenario, its not safe for anyone to travel to the test centres and pose themselves either as a source of the infection or be on the receiving end of it. Hence, if you satisfy all or most of the above requirements mentioned above, then you should definitely apply for the waiver.
List of Top B-Schools Offering Waivers
1. MIT Sloan School of Management
MIT Sloan’s “MBA” program ranks 3rd among QS Global’s list of top colleges offering the same specialization. Besides, it has been maintaining the same top-tier ranking since 2016. The MBA program at MIT Sloan School of Management spans for a period of 2 years and provides a vast choice of concentrations in Economic analyses, data, and models for business decisions while diving deep into every organizational process.
The student will have access to all MIT courses and resources as well. Moreover, the program will be “STEM-optimized,” which means that the students will be allowed to stay in the US for extended periods in search of job opportunities. The University also has a 95.7% placement rate, with an average starting salary of $140,000 along with a massive 136,000+ alumni network.
The school is willing to waiver off the GMAT exam for this year only, keeping in mind the current COVID-19 scenario. As per Sloan’s guidelines, any candidate’s application received without the scores from the standardised test will be reviewed “without negative inferences”. The aspirants will also be allowed to submit their expired GMAT/GRE scores for evaluation. Other alternatives to the exam such as MITx, CORe, and MBAMath will also be taken into consideration. Certifications like CFA or CPA or grades of any non-degree course that showcases the apsirant’s quantitative acumen will also be accepted by the university.
2. Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management
Ranked 10th among QS Global’s list of top colleges offering full-time MBA courses, this school also joins the list of letting the GMAT scores slide. Kellogg’s MBA program spans again for a period of 2 years and places a keen focus on its students’ “All-rounded development” and thus provides electives on Entrepreneurship, Asset Management, Healthcare, and Energy & Sustainability. The program has had a 98.5% placement with an average starting salary of $160,000. More than 650 companies from sectors like Consulting, PE/VC, and Technology visit the campus for recruitment.
The school has assured that the applicants without the scores of the standardised test will not be penalized in any way during the selection process. It should be duly noted that, for now, this holds valid only for Round 3 of the selection process for the Full-Time & Summer/Weekend MBA programs. The school aims to build an equally competent cohort in comparison to the previous ones. Therefore, it will focus more on an applicant’s essays, LORs, and Resume, and the relevant strengths that it highlights. Although, the candidates lacking any relevant work experience or extracurriculars can give the online version of the test by GMAC if they believe it capable enough to strengthen their pitch.
Lastly, applicants who were either waitlisted or denied admissions in rounds 1 or 2 were allowed to submit an appeal to reconsider their application. The deadline for the submission was till 30th April, 2020.
3. Ross School of Business
The MBA program at Michigan Ross has been ranked 19th by QS Global’s list of top colleges offering full-time MBA courses. The program spans for a period of 2 years and the dual degree provided by the school is designed specifically for medical aficionados, which can go up to 5 years.
The school puts a special emphasis on their students’ holistic development while providing them the relevant technical acumen. The “STEM-optimized” MBA program aims to inculcate in their students – a cumulative set of proficiencies in Finance, Managing Organizations, Business Law & Communications, and Public Policy Formulation. The school has had its MBA graduates recruited in different sectors and territories, with – 32% into consulting, 67% into East Coast, West Coast, or Chicago, and 25% in IT sectors.
For Michigan Ross, the aspirants will have to request a standardized test waiver form from the school’s administration. The school emphasizes that the candidates first introspect whether their preparation or scores have been directly impacted by the pandemic or not. The school has also released the deadlines for the waiver requests of subsequent rounds, which are listed below.
- Round-2 Waiver Requests – Deadline by 10th December; Notification by 18th December
- Round-3 Waiver Requests – Deadline by 1st March; Notification by 12th March
- Round-4 Waiver Requests – Deadline by 3rd May; Notification by 14th May
Other Top B-Schools Offering Waivers
|1.||Duke University||Masters in Engineering Management|
|2.||Cornell||Masters in Engineering Management, MPS|
|3.||Michigan Ross||Master of Management|
|4.||Washington University||Master in Management|
|5.||UBC Sauder||Master of Management|
|6.||Georgia Tech||Masters in Business Adminstration|
|7.||Vanderbilt||Masters in Business Adminstration|
|8.||University of Virginia||Masters in Business Adminstration|
|9.||Texas A&M||Masters in Business Adminstration|
|10.||John Hopkins||Masters in Engineering Management|
|11.||Tufts University||Masters in Engineering Management|
|12.||USC Marshall||Masters in Engineering Management|
|13.||Columbia University||Masters in Engineering Management|
|14.||University of California Irvine||Masters in Engineering Management|
Top B-Schools You Can Apply Without GMAT/GRE
|College Name||Country||Program Name|
|Australian National University||Australia||Master of Management (MOM)|
|University of Sydney||Australia||Master in Management|
|Monash University||Australia||Master of Management|
|University of Business ILLINOIS||USA||MS in Management|
|Warwick Business School||UK||MSc in Management|
|City University: Cass||UK||MSc in Management|
|University of Edinburgh Business School||UK||MSc in Management|
|Durham University Business School||UK||MSc in Management|
|Montpellier Business School||France||Master in Management|
|Trinity College Dublin||Ireland||MSc in Management|
|Dublin City University||Ireland||MSc in Management|
|UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School||Ireland||MSc in Management|
|NUS Business School||Singapore||MSc in Management|
|Singapore Management University||Singapore||MSc in Management|
|Nova School of Business & Economics||Portugal||Master in Management|
|Schulich School of Business||Canada||Master of Management|
|Columbia Business School||USA||MBA|
|Hult International Business School||USA||MBA|
|Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University||USA||MBA|
|Thompson Rivers University-School of Business & Economics||Canada||MBA|
|New York Institute of Technology||Canada||Management, MBA|
|New York Institute of Technology||Canada||Finance, MBA|
|Hult International Business School||USA||Masters in International Management|
|Portland State University||USA||Master of International Management|
|Leeds University Business School||UK||International Business MSc|
|Alliance Manchester Business School||UK||MSc in International Business & Management|
|University of Exeter Business School||UK||MSc in International Management|
|Aston Business School||UK||MSc International Business|
|IESEG School of Management||France||Master in International Business|
|Grenoble Ecole de Management||France||Master in International Business|
|Swinburne University of Technology||Australia||Master of Business Management|
|University of the Sunshine Coast||Australia||Master of Business Management
(general management program)
|University of Miami||USA||Master of Management Studies|
|Thunderbird School of Global Management||USA||Master of Global Management|
|University of Northern Business California||Canada||MSc in Business Administration|
|University De Montreal||Canada||MSc in Business Administration|
|University of Strathclyde Business School||UK||MSc in Business & Management|
|Schulich School of Business||Canada||Master of Marketing|
|Melbourne Business School||Australia||Master of Marketing|
|Monash University||Australia||Master of Marketing|
|University of Birmingham||UK||MSc in Marketing|
|University of Birmingham||UK||MSc in International Marketing|
|University of Edinburgh||UK||MSc Marketing|
|University of Bath||UK||MSc in Marketing|
|Warwick Business School||UK||MSc Marketing & Strategy|
|Lancaster University||UK||MSc Marketing|
|Imperial College||UK||MSc Strategic Marketing|
|Grenoble Ecole de Management||France||MSc Marketing Management|
|Trinity College Dublin||Ireland||MSc in Marketing|
|TBS Business School||Spain||MSc Marketing Management|
|University of San Francisco||USA||Master in Global Entrepreneurship & Management|
|Melbourne Business School||Australia||Master of Entrepreneurship|
|IQS/FJU/USF||Spain, Taiwan, US||Master in Global Entrepreneurship Management|
|Corvinus University of Budapest||Hungary||MSc in Management & Leadership|
|Grenoble Ecole de Management||France||MSc Entrepreneurship & Global Marketing|
|EDHEC Business School||France||MSc in Entrepreneurship & Innovation|
|Cass Business School||UK||MSc Entrepreneurship|
|UCL School of Management||UK||MSc Entrepreneurship|
|Trinity College Dublin||Ireland||MSc Entrepreneurship|
|Shanghai Jiao Tong University: Antai||China||Master of Management Science & Engineering|
|Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management||Belgium||Master in Business Engineering|
|University of York||UK||MSc Engineering Management|
|University of Birmingham||UK||MSc Advanced Engineering Management|
|Notthingham Trent University||UK||MSc Engineering Management|
|Aston University||UK||Engineering Management MSc|
|University of Bath||UK||Engineering Business Management MSc|
|University of Warwick||UK||MSc Engineering Business Management|
|Sobey School of Business||Canada||Master in Finance|
|UCL School of Management||UK||MSc Finance|
|Imperial College Business School||UK||MSc Finance|
|Warwick Business School||UK||MSc Finance|
|University of Edinburgh||UK||MSc Finance|
|University of Birmingham||UK||MSc Financial Management|
|Queen Mary University of London||UK||MSc Finance|
|University of Liverpool||UK||MSc Finance|
|Kingston University London||UK||MSc Finance|
|UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School||Ireland||MSc Finance|
Even though the onset of this pandemic has brought nothing good with it, but atleast it will not hinder one’s dream of pursuing a professional career of their choice. Hence, in order to avail the maximum benefit of this waiver and to outshine among the cohort, you will first need to draft a perfect letter requesting for a GMAT waiver. Following this, you will need to shed some light on the pragmatic exposure that you have gained so far and its role in your personal and professional growth. Hence, once you can showcase your strengths and overshadow your weaknesses, then you will gain a crucial upper-hand from the rest of the competition.
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