GMAT Testing Hits Several New Records

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Source: GMAT 2012 World Geographic Trend Report

To paraphrase Mark Twain’s famous maxim, reports of the death of business schools have been greatly exaggerated.

GMAT testing hit a record 286,529 exams taken last year, the greatest annual total ever with an 11% increase over the previous year and a 16% rise from 2008. What’s more, each of the 10 world testing regions experienced growth in prospective business school students taking the GMAT exam in testing year 2012 for the five-year period. Six regions also recorded five-year testing highs, according to the Graduate Management Admission Council.

As expected, much of the growth occurred outside the U.S., especially in Asia. Exams taken by U.S. citizens represented 41% of global exams taken in testing year 2012, down from 51% in 2008. The upshot: GMAT testing outside of the United States continued to grow quickly, with tests taken by non-U.S. citizens rising 19% over 2011, accounting for 59% of global GMAT volume.

The numbers are from a trio of student mobility trend reports published today (Feb. 27) by GMAC. The administrator of the GMAT exam said the reports showed that graduate management education is becoming more global and more diverse, as a broader range of global applicants are sending their GMAT scores to different types of programs in different parts of the world.

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Source: GMAT 2012 World Geographic Trend Report

“Test takers today have an increasing number of study opportunities with quality schools emerging all across the world, and more types of graduate level programs to consider,” said Alex Chisholm, GMAC director of statistical analysis, in a statement. “Test takers sent scores to a record 5,281 programs in 2012, up 21% from 2008, reflecting growing interest in a variety of programs and study destinations.”


A record 286,529 GMAT exams were administered in testing year 2012 (ending June 30, 2012), with 831,337 score reports sent to MBA and other types of graduate management programs, according to the GMAC World Geographic Trend Report, which is being released along with the European Geographic Trend Report and the Asian Geographic Trend Report.

The record volume partially reflects ia scramble by testtakers to avoid a new integrated reasoning section that debuted in early June of 2012. Historically, test volume rises just before changes are made to a standardized exam as test takers opt for a familiar format at the transition.

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