What Is a Good GMAT Score?

Prepping for the GMAT is hard work! But it’s worth it; a good GMAT score is essential if you want to get into a top MBA program. However, a good GMAT score is not necessarily the same for every person. In this post, we’ll cover GMAT score percentiles, good GMAT scores for top business schools, how to improve your score, and how to find a good GMAT score for your goals.

Table of Contents

GMAT Scores: Percentiles

The GMAT is scored from 200 to 800. About half of students score between 400 and 600 on the exam. According to GMAC, the folks who create the GMAT, the GMAT score percentiles reveal the link between GMAT score and percentile of everyone who takes the GMAT. To start, here are some of the correlations between GMAT score and percentile. If you’re not sure about your score, check out Magoosh’s GMAT score calculator first, then come back!

The mean GMAT score is 563.43.

Percentile Ranking

Sample Size: 739,752
Standard Deviation: 117.56
Data Period: 2015-2018

Notice that 780 and 790 and 800 all mean about the same in the great scheme of things.  What constitutes a “good GMAT score” to some extent depends on what you’re aiming for.

If you score anywhere over 600, you have done better than the majority of folks who take the GMAT — you have an above-average GMAT score but far from a perfect score.  If you score over 600, and certainly if you score over 650, that will be high enough to get you into relatively respectable schools.  But what if you have set your sights higher?

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Improve your GMAT score with Magoosh.

What is a good GMAT score for top business schools?

At the top 10 business schools in America, you need a score of at least 715 to be competitive. The highest scaled score you can get on the GMAT is 800. The Verbal and Quantitative sections also have a scaled score that goes up to 800; the whole test score is an average of these two section scores.

You get these final scores right on test day, immediately after you take the GMAT.

So you need at least 715 out of 800 at the 10 best b-schools, ideally. Still, even in these top programs, some applicants are accepted with scores lower than 715. And a school’s own stated GMAT score preferences can change from year to year.

Each year, US News & World Report ranks the “Best Business Schools”, and if you sign up with them, you can get the full information for these schools (tuition, enrollment figures, average GMAT scores, average undergraduate GPA, acceptance rates, and percent of students employed at graduation).  University of Pennsylvania (Wharton) and Stanford University (Booth) top the list.  The 2019 average GMAT scores for students at these two universities are 732.

Remember, those are average GMAT scores, which means that individual scores at each of those schools can be either above or below those numbers.  After you calculate your GMAT score and your GMAT score is, say, 740, then it would be above-average for every business school in the world.  For the other “top ten” schools, the average GMAT scores are between 704 and 736.  If you score above 710, your score is in the territory of the elite schools, and if you score anywhere above 750, your GMAT score is stratospherically high.  At that point, business school admission depends far more on the other aspects of your application, especially your work experience, your references, your interview, and your essays.  A high, even perfect, GMAT score will not help you if you have no valuable work experience or cannot make a compelling case for yourself.

For more information on the GMAT scores needed for top business schools, I highly recommend taking a look at our GMAT Scores for Top Business Schools infographic.

GMAT Scores for Top Business Schools Infographic

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Perfect GMAT score, average GMAT score, or in between

If you are currently at 600, getting up to 650 would be a huge move — a push from the 55th percentile to the 73rd percentile.  If you are at 680, then getting up to 710 would be enormous — crossing the great 700 threshold, moving from top 18% to top 10%.

BUT, if you already have scored between 710-750, adding another 30 points to your GMAT score really won’t do much for your application — and if all the extra blood & sweat & tears it takes to get that additional 30 points take away from the rest of your application, it’s not worth it.  With a GMAT in the 710-750 zone, you have already abundantly demonstrated that your academic ability is quite sufficient to prosper at Wharton, Sloan, or Kellogg.  There are other dimensions you need to demonstrate as well.

If you take the GMAT once, and score higher than 750, that’s great.  If you take it once, get a 720, and want to take it again in an attempt to score higher, think again.  There’s a diminishing returns problem here.

In simple terms, once your GMAT score is more than about 700, the “academic achievement” box is checked.  The schools know you can handle the academic load — both a 720 and a 770 make that same basic statement.  What matters after that is whether the rest of your application is well-rounded — whether you are good fit for the school and whether the admissions people think you have promising leadership potential.  If you have that, then all you need from the GMAT, even for the top schools, is something in the 700+ range; if you don’t have the well-rounded stuff, adding another 50 points to an already high GMAT score will not do bupkis for your application.

Once you get a 700+ GMAT score, it’s insanity to spend more time trying to improve it: at that point, you are done with the GMAT, and you should work to make the rest of your application show that you are a well-rounded candidate.  Getting a 770 GMAT score is a neat trick, but if that’s the only thing you have to your credit, you’re just a “one trick pony” as far as elite business schools are concerned.

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Want a higher GMAT score?

What if the hazards of the stratosphere are not your concern? If you have little idea of your own starting point, I would suggest beginning with the Magoosh GMAT Diagnostic Test.

What if your GMAT score is currently in the low 600s and you would like to move to the high 600s or even low 700s?  Read the articles on this free blog and check out our resource recommendations.  We have a series of study schedules you may find helpful — check all the study schedules out here. Also, read our review of the best GMAT books and resources!  Your personal best GMAT score is not necessarily a perfect score, but it’s what you can do when you are fully prepared and on your game — that’s exactly what Magoosh can do for you!

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Improve your GMAT score with Magoosh.

So, what’s a good GMAT score for you?

Ultimately, you need to identify the GMAT score you would need to get into your target program or programs. Many students apply to target schools, safety schools, and reach schools. At the very least, you should apply to programs that you have a reasonable chance of getting into. Once you have your list of the schools you’d like to apply to, do some research:

  • Identify your target school
    • Research the programs you’re interested in attending and make a list of the business schools you plan to apply to.
  • Research the program’s application requirements
    • Go to the school’s admissions website and figure out what their application entails. Make note of important application deadlines so that you know how long you have to prepare for your GMAT and complete the rest of your application requirements.
  • Research stats on the program’s most recently admitted class
    • GMAT score ranges can vary widely from one program to another. Most business schools will openly state the average GMAT score of their recently admitted class on their admissions website. Some even offer GMAT score percentile ranges for the recently admitted class. Start there. You can always subscribe to US News & World Report to get more information if you can’t find it for free.
  • Talk to current students and the admissions committee
    • In addition to learning more about the program and the culture of the school, talking with current students and the admissions committee can help you gain insight into the admissions process. Maybe your chosen program values your essay and recommendation letters more than a top 20% GMAT score. Or maybe you really do need a 710 to get in. Either way, it’s useful to know how things work.
  • Set your target GMAT score
    • In order to increase your chances of admission, you’re going to want to aim for a GMAT score that is higher than the average score of the recently admitted class. If you’re scoring in the 75th percentile of students, then you’re in good shape. If you’re in the 50th percentile, then you’re going to either need to try for a higher score or spend a lot of time perfecting the rest of your application.
  • Prep with your target GMAT score in mind
    • Determine your baseline score, sign up for a prep course, start using a study schedule, take timed practice tests, and be sure to focus your energy on your weaknesses, not on re-affirming your strengths.

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GMAT Scores: Summary

Who knew that determining your “good GMAT score” would be a challenge in and of itself? Hopefully you now have a better idea of how it’s accomplished and can go about researching your target schools and setting your goal GMAT Score.

So tell us: what are your GMAT score aspirations?  What are your plans for the GMAT and for business school? Have you taken the GMAT cost into consideration? (You can get an idea of the GMAT test fee and more in our guide.) What has been your experience in the B-school application process? What about taking the GRE instead? Maybe check out this GMAT to GRE score conversion to see where you would stand. We would love to hear from you in the comments below!


Editor’s Note: This post was originally published by Mike McGarry in February of 2013, and has been recently updated by Rita Kreig for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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51 Responses to What Is a Good GMAT Score?

  1. Ashutosh Kumar Ojha December 9, 2018 at 1:47 am #

    Is there any chance of getting admission in top US Bschool having GMAT score of 770 and Indian CGPA of 9??

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert December 9, 2018 at 3:58 pm #

      Hi Ashutosh!

      First of all: Congratulations on your score! That is an excellent GMAT score, and I hope that you are able to celebrate a bit before stressing about applications 🙂 With that said, our expertise is in test prep, not admissions advice, so I’m afraid that we aren’t the best people to answer this question. A GMAT score of 770 puts you in the range of elite business schools, which means that you will have a lot of options. I recommend that you use our infographic to identify a few schools, and then do some research to see which ones best fit your interests and career goals. Good luck!

    • James April 3, 2019 at 5:31 am #

      Would you say this still applied? I just got a 720 q50v38 and would like to apply to Wharton and the Chicago universities. Would you consider a retake to aim for a 740 or would it be more important at this stage to focus on the essays?


      • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
        Magoosh Test Prep Expert April 3, 2019 at 7:13 pm #

        Hi James!

        First of all: Congratulations on your score! That is an excellent GMAT score, and I hope that you are able to celebrate a bit before stressing about applications 🙂 Remember, there is more on an application than just your GMAT score.

        With that said, our expertise is in test prep, not admissions advice, so I’m afraid that we aren’t the best people to answer this question. I recommend that you use our infographic to identify a few schools, and then contact their admissions offices for the best information. Good luck!

  2. Saurav Ray August 28, 2018 at 3:39 pm #

    Hi ,

    I just appeared for my GMAT last Friday .
    Sore –> 760 ( Q49,V44.IR7,AWA 5.5)

    I am a Computer Engineer ( B.tech ) . with 7 years work experience ( 2 years USA work ex and currently working in US ) .

    Which schools should I aim for ?


    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert August 31, 2018 at 9:51 am #

      Hi Saurav,

      First of all: WOW and congratulations! That is an excellent GMAT score, and I hope that you are able to celebrate a bit before stressing about applications 🙂 Our expertise is in test prep, not admissions advice, so I’m afraid that we aren’t the best people to answer this question. A GMAT score of 760 puts you in the range of elite business schools, which means that you will have a lot of options. I recommend that you use our infographic to identify a few schools, and then do some research to see which ones best fit your interests and career goals. Good luck!

  3. Gaurangi Agrawal July 24, 2018 at 12:27 am #


    I’m an CS branch engineering student from India. Presently I’m in my third year. I got trained for 10 days in a Digital Marketing company this summer. I have knowledge of Java & C++ but no experience in the field. Next year I’ll be doing a technical internship (mandatory in the B.Tech course).

    I’m planning to prepare for GMAT. Is it too early to start preparing since I’ll have no work experience and only these two internships in my hand by the time I’ll apply for GMAT (December 2019)?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert July 25, 2018 at 7:07 am #

      I’d say it’s not too early. For one thing, an internship does count as work experience in the eyes of some B-schools. Not only that, but you also don’t need work experience to take the GMAT itself, and some MBA programs don’t strictly require work experience. And even if you do decide you want to get some additional work experience so that you’ll have a better chance at top B-schools with stricter requirements, GMAT scores don’t expire for 5 years. So it definitely doesn’t hurt to take the GMAT early on.

  4. Lasse Kröger February 13, 2018 at 10:55 am #

    Hi Mike

    Really likes the article. I scored 700 on my first try. From your artcile it suggest retaking the Gmat for a top 10 business school if you have 710 is useless, could the same be said about 700? Or should I go for it again?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert February 16, 2018 at 6:55 am #

      Hi Lasse,

      First of all, congrats on getting such a stellar GMAT score on your first try! That’s amazing!

      Our expertise is in test prep, not admissions advice, so keep that in mind as you read my answer. A 700 score is very uncertain territory for top 10 business schools–you have proven your ability to manage the academic work at the institution, but you will be competing against students with higher scores. If you have a stellar application–good GPA, excellent references, relevant work experience, etc–then you have a fighting chance at admissions to these schools. If your GMAT score needs to make up for other weaknesses in your application, then you may need to consider a retake.

      It’s worth noting that all of this is basically speculation–only the admissions committee really knows all of the metrics used in considering applicants! If possible, I recommend trying to contact admissions counselors and students at these schools to see what insight they can provide.

      Congrats again on your excellent score, and good luck in the admissions process!

  5. Collin Breitman December 16, 2017 at 12:27 pm #


    I took the GMAT twice first 700 Q49V36 second 710 Q47 V40 both had IR 8 and AWA 6. I have a BS in chemical engineering GPA 3.89 and MS bioengineer 3.96. I work in nuclear power as a senior reactor operator and want to pivot to consulting. Looking at Yale SOM, HBS, Wharton, Sloan. I am pretty much done my apps but I am really worried about my GMAT 710. Combining my scores I could be at a Q49 V40 which is a 730. Will going for it one last time for a 730 be worth or am I GMAT obsessed and I should just drop it.

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert December 19, 2017 at 1:34 pm #

      Hi Collin,

      This is a difficult question, and many students would love to know the answer to it! I’m afraid that I can’t be of much help here–our expertise is in test prep, not admissions advice, so I can’t give you concrete advice one way or the other. I’m sorry about that–I know it’s nerve-wracking to make a decision like this! If you look at the average GMAT scores for top schools, your scores fall a bit low–but these are just averages! These schools are looking at your entire resume, which sounds quite impressive, and your score won’t automatically drop you out of consideration. I recommend trying to get in touch with an admissions counselor or even some current students to get a better idea of what these schools are really looking for in an applicant–the GMAT is only one part of the application, after all, and schools want well-rounded students. I’m sorry I can’t be more helpful, but I wish you the best of luck!

  6. Adithi December 11, 2017 at 2:51 am #

    Hi Mike,

    Great blog! I just took my GMAT today and got an unofficial score of 750 (Q49, V42, IR5). As you can see, my IR score is really low, mainly because I was exhausted by the end of the exam and felt defeated as I thought I didn’t perform as expected. I answered the IR questions without being able to comprehend most of it coz i was freaking out internally. Worst thing to happen during an exams. Do you think i should retake the exam again and improve my IR score?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert December 12, 2017 at 10:00 am #

      Hi Adithi,

      Thanks for reaching out! First of all, CONGRATS on such an amazing GMAT score! This is a difficult question to answer, because it depends on the school and they are not always super forthcoming about how they consider IR scores in their overall application. This blog post and this GMAT Club thread might be helpful in your decision. You may also want to contact the admissions department directly to ask them. You have such a strong overalls core that a lower IR section may not be a big deal, especially if you have a strong overall application, but some more competitive schools might see that as a red flag. You should also consider the time and expense of a retake and whether your energies would be better spent crafting a strong application. I’m sorry there’s no simple answer here–I encourage you to do some research and see what you can find!

  7. Ayush kumar Garg September 29, 2017 at 4:07 pm #

    can we get admission in top b school with good gmat score and nothing good at any other things .

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert September 30, 2017 at 8:40 pm #

      Hi Ayush,

      No, unfortunately just the GMAT score is not going to be enough to guarantee admission.

  8. Arijit Bose March 18, 2017 at 11:28 pm #

    Hi Mike,

    First of all, I must mention that I really enjoyed reading your article – it was informative throughout to say the least. I will like to talk to you about my scenario. My GMAT score is 710 (Q50,V37,AWA6,IR8) on my first attempt. I aim to get into any of the top B schools in Europe. However, I am not sure if my application will be strong enough because I am from an over-represented community (Read, Indian).

    I have over 6 years of experience in IT, with significant international exposure of more than 2 years (In US). Do you think retaking the GMAT is a good idea or should I rather work on crafting my application in a proper form?


    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert March 19, 2017 at 11:32 pm #

      Hi Arijit,

      First off, congratulations on your 710. That’s a very respectable GMAT score. This should put you above average for most b-schools in Europe, including the top ones. Your work experience gives you a good chance of acceptance too, especially because you have experience in a native English speaking country.

      The over-representation of Indian students could be a factor on some campuses. But in truth, most universities don’t really look at national quotas. Instead they look at test scores, academic records, experience, and so on.

      To me, it sounds like you have a pretty good chance at acceptance, and shouldn’t need to retake the exam. Of course, policies at individual schools can vary. To be 100% sure you don’t need a retake, it wouldn’t hurt to ask advice from admissions representatives at schools you’re particularly interested in.

  9. Robert Slack February 26, 2017 at 10:50 am #

    Hi Mike

    Many years ago (1973) I took the old` ATGSB and scored 629 which was at the 93%ile.

    Comparing that with the %ile data you show makes me think ATGSB & GMAT scores are not directly comparable (though it may be due to changes in the clientele mix) . Is there a “magic formula” for conversion from one score to the other please?

    Any help will be very much appreciated

    Kindest Regards


    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert February 27, 2017 at 8:33 am #

      I’ll be honest; there really isn’t any good way to convert one score to the other, in the case of these two tests. Standardized testing has changed A LOT across the board since 1973, and there’s just no comparing any exam from the early 70s to any modern exam. Even a 1973 GMAT couldn’t really be converted to the scoring scale of a present-day GMAT. Sorry I can’t be of more help. 🙁

      • Rob Slack September 23, 2018 at 2:08 pm #

        Thank you for replying. Sorry my reply is so late (I didn’t realise you had replied).



  10. Gaurav February 25, 2017 at 11:06 pm #

    Hi Mike

    My Gmat score is currently 650 (77 percentile) and I am planning to apply to Bschools in canada.Should I go for a retake?

    Colleges to which I am applying has an average Gmat score of around 620-670

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert February 26, 2017 at 2:33 am #

      Hi Gaurav,

      While you are comfortably in that range provided, being on the high end or exceeding the range suggested is a surefire way to get noticed on that dimension of your application. If you feel that you can improve your score and get higher, it may be worth a retake. If you think your entire application is strong, your 650 should be more than sufficient, though. 🙂

  11. Arpit November 30, 2016 at 3:54 pm #

    Thanks for another great post. I took my test yesterday and got a 730 (Q49, V 40). Kinda disappointed, I was targeted 780 and was achieving 750 on the gmat prep, but, bygones are bygones. I bombed the IR though, a weak 5 (54%).
    While your post is great in general, but I heard the schools have separate cut offs depending on nationalities. So, while a 730 may be a great score, but owing to the large applications from let’s say India, 730 isn’t a great score. After all, to keep the class diverse, there’s only as many people from the samw nationalities you can admit. Is it true, and does this indicate I need to retake the test to get those extra 30points?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert November 30, 2016 at 6:43 pm #

      Hi Arpit,

      Congrats on the great score, and I’m glad to hear that you enjoyed the post! So, most schools will not have (or at least will never state that they have) an explicit cutoff or quota for nationality or any other criteria. However, you are correct that they want to have a diverse class, so they may be more selective for students with similar backgrounds. That being said, remember that the GMAT is just one piece to your application. Diversity goes beyond just the score. With a 730, you are competitive and sometimes the other pieces of your application will make the difference. At the same time, obviously having a higher score may make you feel more comfortable. At the end of the day, it becomes a personal decision. How do you think you can most strengthen your application. Will retaking the exam and getting a 760 do the trick, or will time be better spent focusing on your essays? Good luck!

  12. Ray April 9, 2014 at 2:07 pm #


    I just finished taking the GMAT and received an unofficial score of 740. I did not study a whole lot for it because I was confident that I would test well. When I entered the test, I was completely unprepared for the AWA, and I definitely bombed it (wrote very little and did not finish my arguments or provide good examples.) If i have a solid score otherwise, but a very weak AWA, is it worth retaking the exam just to improve this less important score?


    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike April 9, 2014 at 2:23 pm #

      Dear Ray,
      Congratulations on a fantastic GMAT score. NO, do NOT retake. I would say: just make sure your personal statement to B-school is a masterpiece, so that they know you can write.
      Mike 🙂

  13. Jyoty April 9, 2014 at 6:20 am #

    Dear Mike,
    Thanks for the great post. Kindly advice me further pl.
    I have a 730 Q50 and V38 (Well, I scored better in GMATprep (750,760) though, however reading the post above and other such advice I feel retaking is no good,What do you say?)
    IR score is 8.Awaiting my AWA scores.
    I have 2 years of experience as of now and since I am trying for class of 2017, it would add up to almost 3 yrs by then.
    By GPA at Undergrad is 9.1 on a scale of 10. Academics have been fairly good overall.
    I have some good enough leadership experience in college.
    Can you advise me as to in which schools do I have a better chance of admission? As I aim for a career in Strategy, I would love the top notches (H/S/W). I also really like CBS.Kellogg and Booth also seem good. Kindly suggest some qualified admission consultants in India.
    Cheers 🙂 Have a great day!

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike April 9, 2014 at 11:51 am #

      Dear Jyoty,
      I would definitely say: do not, DO NOT, think about retaking the GMAT. As for the rest of what you ask, blog comments are not really the place to get one-on-one counselling, and furthermore, while I am a GMAT expert, I am not an admission consultant. What you ask, about individual schools, are issues you need to bring to a qualified admission consultant. Unfortunately, Magoosh does not recommend any admission consultants, either in the US or abroad.
      Best of luck!
      Mike 🙂

  14. Shahin April 8, 2014 at 9:37 am #

    Hai mike,

    I have started GMAT study in last 18 march. Still now I have completed Kaplan and half-way of Princeton review. But my problem is that some of my friends saying that after finishing the KAPLAN and Princeton Review, I require to start OG. In contrast some of them are saying that I require to start Manhattan. I am in a perplexed situation. Plz give me a suggestion what is the best to do after finishing Kaplan and Princeton review?

  15. Niranjan February 11, 2014 at 6:33 am #

    Dear Mike, I am pursuing my final year engineering in India. My CGPA is 5.7/10 and I plan to do an MBA in the US. Would I be able to fill the gap of my CGPA with the GMAT score and get into a good institution?

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike February 11, 2014 at 9:40 am #

      Dear Niranjan,
      I will share with you my thoughts, but first, I must caution you —- it would be best to consult with a qualified admission consultant. I know tons about the GMAT, but I am less qualified in giving overall admission advice. I would say — since your low CGPA could raise questions, everything else must be very strong: your GMAT score, your recommendations, and your personal statement. All of those must give resounding evidence of your intelligence and talents if you want to place into one of the better business schools. That’s my two cents, although again, it’s important to talk with an admission consultant about your chances at specific places.
      Mike 🙂

  16. Chandni January 19, 2014 at 12:53 am #

    I’ve scored 700 (Q47 V39 AWA 5.0 IR 8) on the GMAT. I’m an undergrad student graduating in Summer 2014. Should I retake the exam?

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike January 19, 2014 at 1:54 pm #

      Dear Chandni,
      No, no, no, no, no, no. You already have an excellent score, good enough to get into any B-school on Earth. Taking the GMAT again would be gratuitous. Focus on making yourself the best B-school candidate in every other way as well.
      Mike 🙂

  17. aparna December 8, 2013 at 1:12 pm #

    Hi Mike,I scored a gmat score of 700 but my IR score is disastrously low,just 2.Should I rewrite the GMAT. Do I have any chance of getting into a top school with this?

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike December 8, 2013 at 6:44 pm #

      Hmmm. That’s a tricky combination — high GMAT but low IR. I’m inclined to recommend not retaking, but I would recommend discussing this unique situation with a qualified admission consultant.
      Mike 🙂

  18. Jayant Patel November 15, 2013 at 7:22 pm #

    Hi Mike,

    Whether a score of 690 (47Q 38V) is safe for an Indian male applicant or a quant score of 47 (70th Percentile) in present times necessitates retaking the GMAT. Target is top 10 programs in US.

    Thanks !

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike November 17, 2013 at 3:36 pm #

      Dear Jayant,
      Your GMAT score is fine. I don’t believe you need to retake the GMAT I would recommend a consultation with a quality admission consultant. I’m a GMAT expert, but I don’t know everything there is to know about admissions.
      Mike 🙂

  19. Cody August 12, 2013 at 12:48 pm #


    Great post and thank you for your work with Magoosh. Using your three month advanced study guide, which utilized Magoosh, Manhattan GMAT and the Official Guide, I scored a 770.

    Seriously, thank you. I had little to no direction when I began studying and having something to keep myself on track was incredibly helpful.

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike August 12, 2013 at 3:35 pm #

      Thank you for your kind words, and CONGRATULATIONS! Best of luck to you in the future!
      Mike 🙂

  20. Ritayan July 23, 2013 at 8:51 pm #

    Dear Mike,
    Thanks for the great post!! If anyone looks into the GMAT score middle 80%, it will simply reveal that there have to be people getting GMAT score somewhat above 680 and still getting into B Schools. As mentioned by you GMAT only helps you get a SINGLE checkbox ticked in your application portfolio. Moreover, if you have a great under grad GPA, a 700 GMAT is more than enough to suffice. But selection of a school where you fit best, writing the application essays, getting strong recommendations are way too difficult. To get a good GMAT score there are plenty of resources, guidelines adhering to them indeed earns good GMAT score, whereas while shaping up your profile you’ll have to do a great deal of introspection that needs tremendous amount of time. So it’s always better to get into the tougher job of shaping up your profile once you have achieved in the middle 80% GMAT score of your target school.


    Ritayan B

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike July 24, 2013 at 12:05 pm #

      Dear Ritayan,
      You are quite welcome. Best of luck to you.
      Mike 🙂

  21. tarot July 7, 2013 at 4:03 am #

    An impressive share! I’ve just forwarded this onto a colleague who has been doing a little research on this. And he actually ordered me lunch simply because I found it for him… lol. So let me reword this…. Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending the time to talk about this issue here on your web page.

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike July 7, 2013 at 1:45 pm #

      Dear Tarot,
      You are quite welcome, and I’m happy for you that you got a meal out of it. Best of luck to you.
      Mike 🙂

  22. BankerHBS June 8, 2013 at 4:17 am #

    Hey Mike,

    Great article! Im struggling with a similar question. I also have a 710 (Q48, V40) – 92 percentile. I have pretty diverse work-experience (investment banking at morgan stanley for 3 years + a startup experience (6 mnths) + non-profit consulting in africa for a year. GPA of 3.74 + a bunch of extra-curricular activities that are pretty cool

    I was just wondering if demographics would alter your hypothesis. Does it hold true for say Indian Male 25-27. Indian kids crack the GMAT far more frequently than other (750+).

    I have 7 months to Round 2 applications and I’m focused on HBS / Wharton / Stanford and Columbia. Do you think it’s worth another shot, given the context?

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike June 8, 2013 at 10:28 am #

      My friend, I don’t believe that demographics are a game-changer in terms of this issue. At least my opinion, FWIW, is that you should stick with the 710, and spend your time crafting an application that demonstrates why your diverse work experience has been the ideal preparation for what you want to do with your MBA. That’s my two-cents.
      Mike 🙂

  23. Bizwiz April 11, 2013 at 6:48 pm #

    Great insights, Mike.
    I do have a different point of view, though. I believe in the past scoring above 700 would put you in a very good position at any elite school, but we’ve seen the average gmat score for admitted students at elite schools follow an upward trend in the past few years. As you pointed out, atudents at Harvard and Stanford have an incredible average of almost 730! And this year, I’ve seen waitlisted applicants at a top-10 school, with a score of 710, receive feedback from adcoms that they should consider retaking the test and try to get a higher score. I do know there are a lot of aspects to consider during the application process, but I believe that, to paraphrase an old expression, ‘a 720 is the new 700’. Specially for schools like Harvard, Stanford, Wharton, Booth, Tuck and Haas, just to name a few.
    Even though you can get into these schools with a 680+, I believe nowadays the odds are the same only above a 720.
    What do you think?

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike April 12, 2013 at 10:55 am #

      Dear Bizwiz,
      Many of these questions I treat in this related blog:
      As I explain in that blog, there’s a problem fixating on the score alone (American culture tries to turn us all into number-fixators!) A person with a 710 GMAT but not well rounded, not a good fit, will certainly have lower odds. Furthermore, our fast-food culture is all about quick fixes — what is adcom going to say to this not-well-rounded 710 person? Perhaps not all the stuff that would make him a better candidate overall, but simply — get a bigger & better number. Or, perhaps adcom tells him 5 or 6 different things, but the only one the 710 person reports to the rest of the world is, “I need a bigger and better score.” Be aware of this insidious tendency to quantify everything — it’s pervasive, it obscures more than it reveals, and it’s a bias that ultimately limits success.
      By all means, do your absolute best to get a good GMAT score, but if you get one score, think carefully about the cost-benefit before committing to a retake.
      Mike 🙂

      • Ruchit February 4, 2014 at 4:18 am #

        Hey mike,
        I have score 400 in my GMAT exam, can I get admission in any college. I want to do MBA in hotel management. How should I go on further?? Please do reply.

        • Mike MᶜGarry
          Mike February 4, 2014 at 10:39 am #

          Dear Ruchit,
          Here’s what I would say. It will be very hard to get into most business schools with that GMAT score. I would suggest: strengthen you understanding of English. Practice every day: especially read every day. Here are some suggestions about what to read for the GMAT: https://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/gmat-reading-list/
          When you can read sources such as the New York Times & Economist magazine with little difficulty, then you will be ready to take the GMAT again. Here’s a study schedule you can follow:
          I hope all this helps.
          Mike 🙂

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