Most of the students aspiring to take admitted to top business schools are usually advised to attempt both the GRE and GMAT. This creates confusion among students about which one is better.
Many business schools will accept both GMAT and GRE scores for the admission process and give them equal weightage.
In the following article, we will take a clearer look at each test and decide which test will be more suitable according to your career preferences.
GRE Vs GMAT: In a Nutshell
If you are in a hurry and don’t have enough time to take a look at all the details of the exam, you can refer to the following table. I have listed down all the necessary details about each exam in the table.
|Test duration||3 hours 45 minutes||3 hours and 30 minutes|
|Sections||Analytical Writing, Quantitative Reasoning, Verbal Reasoning,||Analytical Writing, Quantitative, Verbal, and Integrated Reasoning.|
|Score||Max score 340(Excluding analytical section)||200 to 800|
|Score valid up to||5 years||5 Years|
|Accepted by||Graduate programs including business schools.||Graduate business schools.|
|Test Center||Online or at a test center||Online or at a test center.|
To make it easy for you, I have mentioned all the details about the exam structure and format. Furthermore, in the article, you will be able to understand a detailed breakthrough of each section.
GRE Vs GMAT: Overview 2023
Let us take a look at the overview of the GRE and GMAT before we dive deep into the comparison of the exams. This will help us to get a basic understanding of what exactly the GRE and GMAT have to offer.
GRE is usually accepted for admission in most graduate programs. Administered by the Educational Testing Service(ETS). It is also accepted in business and law schools as well.
The exam evaluates students’ quantitative and verbal reasoning, analytical skills, and critical thinking.
You can attempt GRE for a maximum of 5 attempts in a year. You are eligible to take the exam once in 21 days. If you are attempting GRE more than once, you can select the scores you want to send to the schools to that you are applying to.
GMAT is used to take admission into business schools. The GMAT is administrated by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC). You can attempt the exam for admission into MBA programs.
The exam is used to measure the student’s abilities of critical thinking and reasoning needed for the top management schools.
You can appear for GMAT in the nearest test center up to 5 times in a rolling 1 year period. However, you can retake the online exam only once.
GRE Vs GMAT: Exam Format 2023
GRE and GMAT use the technology of adaptive computer tests. In GRE, the level of difficulty of your questions is decided by how you performed in the previous section.
The questions in both tests start from a medium level of difficulty and then are altered according to your previous responses.
However, in GMAT, your level of difficulty is determined by the previous question. If you have correctly answered the previous question, the level of difficulty of the next question will increase, but if your previous answer is wrong, the level of difficulty will decrease for the next question.
The GRE format comprises the 3 scored sections and an unscored or experimental section. Analytical writing is the first section of the GRE exam, while the rest sections appear in random order. You would have no clue about which section is unscored during the test.
This section comprises two differently timed parts. The first 30-minute part involves the construction of your argument on the issues, while the second 30-minute writing task comprises evaluating someone else’s argument on an issue.
This section tests the student’s basic math skills. The section is divided into two 35-minute sections. Each section comprises 20 questions.
The questions are either multiple-choice questions or numeric entry questions. The topics covered in this section are arithmetics, geometry, algebra, and data analysis. You can score around 130 to 170 points.
This section comprises two 30-minutes sections. Each section includes 20 questions. The questions in this section are divided into reading comprehension, sentence equivalence, and text completion. In this section, you can score around 130 to 170 points.
During the test, you can use an on-screen calculator to perform complex mathematical calculations. Moreover, you can make questions for review, change your answer and move back and forth in each section.
The format of the GMAT differs in online tests and offline tests. The offline paper comprises four sections.
In this section, you have to analyze a given argument and write a critique of it. The section lasts for 30 minutes and comprises zero to six points.
This section comprises 31 multiple-choice questions. You will come across quantitative problems as well as data-sufficiency problems in this section. This section can help you to score between 6 to 51 points.
This section tests your ability to solve a complex problem with the help of the data provided. In this section, there are 12 questions, and the time allotted for the section is 30 minutes.
The section comprises 36 questions. The time allotted for the section is 65 minutes. Your ability to read, evaluate and understand the written material is tested in this section. You will come across questions based on critical reasoning, comprehension, and sentence correction.
The students are permitted to use the online calculator in the integrated reasoning section only. Whiteboard or laminated notebook with erasable markers is provided to perform calculations in the Quantitative section.
In the GMAT test, you are not permitted to change your answers or go back to the previous questions.
GRE Vs GMAT Structure 2023
The exam structure of the GRE and GMAT differs in the time duration and the number of questions in each section. The following section comprises the details of the exam structure of both tests.
The time allotted for the GRE test is 3 hours and 45 minutes. The paper contains 80 scored questions and 20 unscored research questions. There are 6 sections in the paper, including the research section.
You will have to attempt 2 essays in the GRE paper. The score of the GRE test is valid for up to 5 years. The cost of the test is $205.
The time allotted for the GMAT test is 3 hours and 30 minutes. The paper consists of 1 essay. The 4 sections comprise 90 questions in total.
The Scores of GMAT are considered valid for up to 5 years. The cost of the GMAT test is $275.
GRE Vs GMAT: Scoring
The GRE and GMAT have different scoring patterns. Each section is scored and analyzed differently. Let us take a look at the scoring pattern of each section in tests.
In GRE, the scores for the Analytical Writing section range between 0 to 6 with an increment of half point. The verbal and quantitative reasoning sections have a score range between 130 and 170 with one point increment.
The scores of the sections are reported separately and not combined into a composite score.
The quantitative and verbal sections have a score range of 0 to 60 points. In these sections, the point increment is done in 1 point. Whereas the Analytical writings score ranges between 0 to 6 with a half-point increment. The scores in the integrated section reasoning section range between 1 to 8 with one point increment.
In GMAT, the most important score is the composite score. It ranges between 200 to 800. In the composite score, only the scores from verbal and quantitative sections are considered. Students’ scores from Integrated reasoning and Analytical writings are not considered in the composite score. However, there are scores rewarded for each section.
GRE Vs GMAT: Verbal Section.
The first section of the GMAT and GRE is the verbal section. Despite having some similarities in this section, GRE tests the vocabulary of the students while GMAT focuses on testing grammar.
GRE verbal section
The Verbal section of the GRE tests your skills in analyzing and understanding the written text. There are 2 verbal sections in the GRE test. There are 20 questions in each section. The time allotted to each section is 30 minutes.
The verbal section consists of 3 categories of questions.
In this section, you will have to answer the questions based on the given passage. The students will have to consider the minute details and the bigger picture of the paragraph given.
You will be provided with a list of words to choose from and complete the given text by filling in the blanks. The short passage provided is tricky, and you will need to focus to finding the appropriate word that will fill in the blank.
The students will be provided with a single sentence and a blank. There are six words offered to choose from. You will have to select two words that will fit into the sentence and produce a new sentence with a similar meaning.
GMAT verbal section
The verbal section in the GMAT exam checks your ability to comprehend the text provided and judge the arguments based on different topics. You will also have to identify the errors in the written material.
GMAT comprises only 1 verbal section. The total number of questions is 41. The time allotted for the verbal section is 75 minutes.
The Verbal section in GMAT consists of 3 basic types of questions.
You will be provided with a passage and will have to answer a few questions based on the passage. You will also have to derive various conclusions from the provided text and analyze the arguments.
This type of question has a word or a phrase underlined. You will be provided with 5 options to word the underlined portion. You will have to select the word that is most suitable for the sentence. These questions of the verbal section test your communication skills along with grammar.
These type of questions consists of a passage with 2 to 3 lines. You will have to analyze the information and answer the questions from the passage. The twist here is that you will have to work on the analysis of the text.
There are many similarities in the verbal section of both tests. But, the GRE section tends to test vocabulary and grammar. The reading passages of the GRE are more challenging as compared to GMAT’s verbal section.
Hence, the verbal section of the GMAT is simpler than the GREs’.
GRE Vs GMAT: Quants Section.
The Quantitative section in GRE and GMAT are similar to some extent. But, the way of addressing the problems that they follow is different.
GRE Quants section
GRE checks your abilities in the areas of Algebra, Arithmetic, Data Analysis, and Geometry. There are 2 sections of Quants in the GRE. Each section comprises 20 questions, and 30 minutes are allotted to each.
The Quants section in GRE mostly comprises multiple-choice questions. Few questions require a numeric entry where you will need to enter the correct answer instead of selecting from the options.
There are questions that are quantitative comparison questions. In these questions, you will be provided with two quantities, and you will have to check which one is larger or are the two quantities similar.
GMAT Quants section
GMAT includes two types of questions in the quants section. They consist of problem-solving and Data sufficiency. There is also an integrated reasoning section that covers topics like multi-source reasoning, graphic interpretation, table analysis, and two-part analysis.
There are 2 sections for GMAT in quants. The first section covers quantitative reasoning, while the second covers integrated reasoning. The first section comprises 37 questions and the second section consists of 12 questions.
The time allotted for quantitative reasoning is 75 minutes and for the second section is 30 minutes.
These type of questions requires interpreting graphs, solving equations, and evaluating data.
There are around 14 to 16 questions about data sufficiency in the Quants section of GMAT. In these problems, you will be provided with a question that will be followed by two statements. You will have to find out whether one, both, neither or both are sufficient to answer the question.
Integrated Reasoning Section:
The section tests a student’s ability to process and interpret the information. In this section, you will have to interpret the data present in text, numbers, and graphics.
The problems in this section are complex and may contain multiple parts. You will have to answer all the parts of the question correctly to earn score points.
The level of difficulty of the questions in both tests is almost equivalent. However, the critical thinking required in the integrated reasoning section of the GMAT makes scoring challenging in the quants section.
GRE Vs GMAT: Analytical Writing.
The difference between GRE and GMAT in the analytical writing section is that GMAT requires only 1 essay while GRE consists of 2 essays.
GRE Analytical Writing
For the analytical writing part of the GRE, you will have to write two essays. You must analyze a task and an argument. You will be provided 30 minutes to write each essay.
At the same time, analyzing the idea, along with writing about the strength and weaknesses of the argument, you will also need to critique it.
For analyzing a task, you will have to explain your own views on the issues addressed in the argument provided. You must justify your opinion with evidence.
GMAT analytical writing
You will be allotted 30 minutes to complete the analytical writing section in GMAT. For the essay writing, you will be provided with an argument. You will need to assess the argument and write about its shortcomings and strengths.
The analytical writing lasts for 30 minutes on GMAT and 60 minutes for GRE. Here, the time constraint clearly creates an uncomfortable environment.
The essay section needs more understanding and analysis in the GRE paper. Hence, analytical writing on GRE is more difficult than GMAT.
GRE Vs GMAT: Which is Easy (2023)
Selecting which is easier, GRE or GMAT depends on your strengths and abilities and the testing style of the exam.
The quants section in GRE is a bit easier as compared to GMAT. GRE usually consists of more variety of Geometry questions, while GMAT has more logical questions.
On the other hand, the verbal section in GRE is more difficult than GMAT. You need a good vocabulary to ace the verbal section of the GRE.
Which exam should you go with in 2023? GRE or GMAT
Most business schools choose the applicants for the GMAT over GRE. However, it has now become common for business schools to accept the score of GRE as a part of their admission requirements. This provides students the flexibility to choose a test that will best highlight their strengths.
Moreover, if you want to keep more options available for other graduate programs, you can simply opt for GRE.
Furthermore, if you are determined to go ahead with the business school, the GMAT is surely a better option. GMAT scores can also be displayed in the job application process of investment and business consulting firms.
Wrapping Up! GRE Vs GMAT (2023)
That’s all about GRE and GMAT.
The major difference between GMAT and GRE is that you can switch between previous questions in GRE and lack this flexibility in GMAT. Most students prefer GRE to have other options available in hand if they wish to change their major.
As GMAT is focused only on business schools, it is preferred by students who have a clear aim to get into one.
I hope that the article has helped you to select which test is more suitable for you and cleared the picture of the GRE and GMAT tests. So which one are you opting for and why? Do let us know in the comment section below.
Best wishes for the future.