First Glance at GMAT scores
Just after you complete taking your GMAT test and before leaving the exam centre, you will be shown your unofficial GMAT scores for all sections except the Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) as well as your total GMAT score.
After your preview your GMAT score, you will be given 2 minutes to decide if you want to report or cancel this GMAT score. If you don't choose anything within these 2 minutes, your GMAT score gets cancelled automatically.
As of July 2015, the cancelled scores (earlier represented by a C in the GMAT score card) will not be shown on the GMAT Report Card sent to the b-schools i.e. no one but you gets to know your cancelled GMAT score.
If you choose to go ahead with your GMAT score i.e. report this score, but later on feel like cancelling it - you have 72 hours to cancel (but only after you pay a fee of $25.)
Get back your cancelled GMAT Score
If you happened to cancel your GMAT score, but later decide that you were happy with that score, you can reinstate (get back) that GMAT score by paying $50 within 4 years & 11 months of taking that test.
We would therefore advise you to go prepared with an ideal GMAT score in mind on the GMAT test day, so that you can decide within 2 minutes whether you're happy or not with whatever scores you've achieved.
A look at the various fee involved for cancelling or re-instating your GMAT scores. Image courtesy: mba.com
The GMAT testing authority sends your score to up to 5 programs of your choice on the test date. However, if you wish to apply for additional programs, you can ask for more GMAT Score Reports. Given below is an explanation of the GMAT scoring and percentile rank.
Understand your Official GMAT Score Report
Your official GMAT Score Report is ready within 20 days of you writing the exam. In fact, within 20 days from your GMAT test date, you will receive an email with instructions explaining how you can get your GMAT Official Scores online - this report can be viewed, downloaded or printed. Your Official GMAT Scores will also be delivered to you through regular mail approximately after 20 days (there can be delay in the delivery time.)
GMAT Score Card details
Your official score card would include details such as:
- Your name
- Your address
- Date of Birth
- Country of citizenship
- Undergraduate GPA & Major
- GMAT test date
- Individual section scores, GMAT percentile & total GMAT score
Total GMAT Score
The GMAT total score is calculated on the basis of only the 3rd & 4th section i.e. Quantitative & Verbal. The Analytical Writing Assessment and Integrated Reasoning sections are given separate scores and the AWA score & IR score will not affect you Total score. Understand the various sections part of the GMAT exam.
Scale/ range of scoring in GMAT
The scoring scale/ range for various GMAT sections are given here:
- Analytical Writing Assessment: 0 - 6
- Integrated Reasoning: 1 - 8
- Quantitative: 0 - 60
- Verbal: 0 - 60
- Total GMAT score: 200 - 800 (this score is calculated by first scaling up the quant & verbal scores, combining them and further scaling them to arrive at a number between 200 and 800)
GMAT Percentile Ranking
Apart from the GMAT scores, there is also a "percentile" mentioned in your GMAT score report. This percentile number is an indicator of the percent of GMAT takers who scored more than you.
So if you have a GMAT score of 790 (which is one of the highest GMAT score recorded ever!), then you are assigned a GMAT percentile of 99%. This means that you scored more than 99% of the test-takers. Your GMAT score is a constant figure, but your GMAT percentile ranking would vary according the the performance of other GMAT applicants. Percentile ranking is assigned not just to your Total GMAT score, but also for the score in every section.
66% GMAT takers obtain a GMAT score anywhere between 400 - 600. A 'good GMAT score' can have different meanings - how good your GMAT score is, depends on which b-schools you have applied to. If you score more than 600, it means you've got an above average GMAT score. A GMAT score of 610 gives you a percentile ranking of 62 i.e. you've scored more than 62% of the students (sample date taken from 2013 - 2015.)
GMAT Scores for Business Schools & Colleges
In order to get into a top-ranked MBA program in the best b-schools, it is necessary to score the highest GMAT score you can. The business school with the highest average GMAT score for last year's (fall 2015) admissions was Stanford University (733), followed closely by Wharton whose average GMAT score requirement was 732. Booth School of Business (Chicago's) average GMAT score was 726 while the average GMAT score for Harvard Business School was 725.
Closer home, Indian b-schools like ISB had an average GMAT score of 704 (lowest GMAT score 590 to highest score of 770) for its Hyderabad and Mohali campuses for the class of 2017. The SP Jain Institute of Management & Research asks for a GMAT score of 650 from Indian applicants and 600 from international applicants.
There is no negative marking in GMAT. Since it is a "computer-adaptive test (CAT)", the marking system is quite different. The difficulty level (therefore the value) of each question varies according to your performance. If you keep answering correctly, the next questions keep getting tougher (worth more marks.)
Since Jan 2015, the Enhanced GMAT Score Card is available which allows test takers to not just see their scores but also compare their skill level with test takers from the past 3 years