Stanford GSB Retains Highest GMAT Average

Stanford University Graduate School of Business

Stanford University Graduate School of Business

With applications to its MBA program up a healthy 7.4% in 2014-2015, Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business today (Oct. 1) reported that the average GMAT for its incoming class reached a new high of 733.

That score, the highest average GMAT ever for any incoming class of MBAs at a U.S. business school, is only a point higher than last year’s 732. But with Wharton’s new class hitting a record 732 this year, it keeps Stanford in the lead, by bringing in students who average among the top four percent of all GMAT test takers in the 96th percentile.

To reach that new level, the range of GMAT scores for the 407 students in the Class of 2017 narrowed a bit more. This year, the lowest score for an enrolled student was 570–20 points higher than the 550 low a year ago–while the highest score was a perfect 800–10 points higher than last year’s 790. The average undergraduate grade point average is 3.75, up a tick from the 3.74 average in 2014. That is the highest reported GPA for any MBA program in the world and compares with a 3.66 GPA at Harvard Business School.


Stanford said it received 7,899 applications for the Class of 2017, up from 7,355 applications a year earlier. Only four years ago in 2012, 6,716 candidates applied for admission to Stanford’s MBA program. During that span, applications to Stanford have risen 17.6%, making the school harder than ever to get into. Though the school did not disclose its selectivity rate for the Class of 2017, Stanford’s acceptance rate of 7.1% last year almost certainly fell to 6.8% or 6.9%.

The new class has fewer women, 40% versus 42% a year earlier, and fewer international students, 40% versus 44% in 2014 (though the international numbers include permanent residents and U.S. dual citizens). Stanford also said U.S. minorities make up 19% of the Class of 2017, a drop of four percentage points from 23% last year.

The decline in women at Stanford occurs in a year when many peer schools, including Wharton, Kellogg, Booth, and Tuck, have reported increased percentages of women students. At many of those MBA programs, female enrollment has broken records as business schools have more aggressively recruited young women into their programs with targeted events and more scholarship aid.

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