GMAT vs. GRE: what is the difference?

GMAT vs. GRE: what is the difference?

Every year students face the biggest challenge in MBA admission process. With the increasing number of business schools, emerging criteria for admission in MBA is evolving. To make a choice, which test one should give, students have to consider a lot of factors. This table here presents differences between GMAT and GRE

In addition to IELTS, GMAT is essentially for those students who want to pursue graduate management program (MBA or Masters of Finance). GRE is essentially for those students who are considering degrees apart from MBA. 

GRE: Graduate Record Examination

Cost: $195

Test structure:

  • Verbal Questions

Content: Sentence Equivalence, Reading Comprehension, Critical Reasoning, Text Completion and Emphasis on Vocabulary.

Format: Choosing all answers that apply, choosing a sentence in the passage and multiple choice

Assessment: This section analyzes and draws a conclusion from discourse; reason from incomplete data; identify author’s assumptions and perspective. You should understand multiple levels of meaning, select important points; distinguish between major and minor or relevant points, summarize text, understand the structure of the text, understand the meaning of words, sentences and entire texts; understand the relationship among words and concepts.

  • Quantitative Questions

Content: Arithmetic, Algebra, Geometry, Data Interpretation, Word Problems. This section is easier than it in GMAT. 

Format: Multiple choice, multiple answer, numeric entry and quantitative comparisons

Calculators: It is allowed to use a calculator. 

Assessment: You should be able to understand, interpret and analyze quantitative information and solve problems using mathematical models. You should be able to apply basic skills and elementary concepts of arithmetic and data interpretation. There will be an on-screen calculator. If the test is paper delivered, then a calculator will be provided at the test centre.   

  • Analytical Writing

Assessment: This section measures your ability to articulate complex ideas clearly and effectively, support ideas with relevant reasons and examples, examine claims and accompanying evidence, sustain a well-focused, coherent discussion, control the elements of standard written English. This section requires your focused responses based on the task presented to you, which will enable you to accurately demonstrate your skill in directly responding to a task. 

Number of questions

Quantitative Writing: 40 questions 

Analytical Writing: 2 topics

Verbal Reasoning: 40 questions

Integrated Reasoning: ---

Validity of the scores

5 years

Testing time

3.5 hours using paper or 3.75 hours using a computer. 

Allocated time                          

Quantitative Reasoning: 70 minutes

Analytical Writing: 60 minutes

Verbal Reasoning: 60 minutes

Integrated Reasoning: -N/A- 

How will the test be delivered?

This test is offered on computer. Alternatively, the test is also offered on paper, in the absence of a computer.

How will the test be marked?

Verbal and Quantitative scores from 130 to 170 in 1-point increments.

Who needs to take the test?

Most universities in the UK do not require students to take a GRE exam. However, there are a few postgraduate-level programmes list GRE as a document that the admission will consider when students apply for those programmes.

GMAT: Graduate Management Admission Test

Cost: $250

Test structure:

  • Verbal Questions

Content: Sentence Correction, Reading Comprehension, Critical Reasoning and Emphasis on Grammar.

Format: Multiple choice

Assessment: This section includes three different types of questions: Reading Comprehension, Critical Reasoning and Sentence Correction. In the Reading Comprehension part, you will be asked to read, interpret, apply and infer information from passages up to 350 words You will have to define words and phrases in context, determine the strong and weak parts of an argument and draw inferences. In critical reasoning part, you must recognize the structure of an argument. Recognizing the structure of an argument includes the recognition of the structure of an argument, including assumptions, evidence and conclusion; recognize the parallels between the similar arguments; determine the factors that strengthen or weaken an argument; observe the effectiveness of a plan of action in a given argument.

  • Quantitative Questions

Content: Arithmetic, Algebra, Geometry, Data Interpretation, Word problems. This paper is harder than it in GRE

Format: Problem Solving (multiple choice), Data Sufficiency

Calculators: Calculators are not allowed to be used during the test.

Assessment: The test intends to measure the basic mathematic skills, understanding of elementary concepts and the ability to reason quantitatively. The questions will be of two types: problem solving and data sufficiency. The questions will assess basic mathematical skills, understanding and basic reasoning skills. This section also includes word problems. Overall, this section measures your ability to analyze a quantitative problem, determining which information is relevant and sufficient for finding a solution.  

  • Analytical Writing

AssessmentThis section measures your ability to think and communicate ideas in essay format. The ideas found in this section are generally based on general topics and doesn’t require knowledge or expertise in specific subjects. This section includes two writing tasks: Analysis of an Issue and Analysis of an Argument. In the Analysis of an Issue task, you will analyse an issue and write an essay explaining your views. While in the Analysis of an Argument task, you must analyse the reasoning behind an argument and write a critical essay. Remember, your personal views will not be considered. 

Number of Questions

Quantitative Writing: 37 questions 

Analytical Writing: 1 topic

Verbal Reasoning: 41 questions

Integrated Reasoning12 questions

Validity of the scores

5 years

Testing time

3.5 hours. 

Allocated time                          

Quantitative Reasoning: 75 minutes

Analytical Writing: 30 minutes

Verbal Reasoning: 75 minutes

Integrated Reasoning: 30 minutes

How will the test be delivered?

This test is only offered on the computer

How will the test be marked?

The overall, or composite, GMAT score range from 200-800 in 10-point increments.

Who needs to take this test?

Some top UK business schools may require students to submit a GMAT result as part of the university application.

Both tests are equally important and competitive. The GMAT, which is the standardised test for business school, cannot be used in place of the GRE, so unless you are going to business school, do not take the GMAT.

You should make the list of schools you want to apply to. The choice depends on the requirements of the university and course you choose to apply and pursue. It is a possibility that you may end up applying to schools with different testing options. You should focus on a test taking a strategy that will serve you best during the application process. 

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