In a sign that MBA applicants are having trouble scheduling and taking the online GMAT and GRE exams, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School today (Aug. 5) announced that it would accept applications for round 1 without testing for some candidates. Instead of submitting test results by the R1 application deadline of Sept. 15, 2020, applicants would be able to send them in more than a month later by Oct. 21.
To take advantage of the delayed reporting, an applicant would have to meet one of three conditions:
- An inability to take an at-home test due to medical or disability reasons
- No online tests are available to an applicant in their location.
- An applicant is located in a region with restricted internet and/or limited availability to in-person tests
The change in the school’s testing requirements was announced by Blair Mannix, director of MBA admissions at Wharton, in a blog post. “Thinking about our applicants, we wanted to remain forward-thinking and recognize that the MBA application process is not the same as years past,” she wrote. “Like our candidates, we have to adapt to meet the changes and challenges of this COVID-19 world. We know that the MBA journey can be stressful. We hope that making these small changes is helpful as you prepare your application.”
‘THE INABILITY TO ACCESS THESE ASSESSMENTS PRESENTS A CHALLENGE AT BEST & UNDUE HARDSHIP AT WORST’
Mannix noted that prospective applicants to Wharton’s MBA program have expressed concern about the availability of the at-home tests. “We recognize that for some, the inability to access these assessments presents a challenge at best, and an undue hardship at worst,” she said. “For anyone meeting the above-listed criteria, you will have an extension to submitting your test score. Instead of submitting your test results by the application deadline of September 15, 2020, you will have until October 21, 2020, to supply your test scores. We want to ensure that we are meeting our candidates where they are. We also need to ensure that all GMAT or GRE scores are submitted to finalize our review before releasing Round 1 interview invitations.”
Only last month, the Graduate Management Admission Council made its at-home, online exam available until Dec. 31st of this year. But it can only be taken once, and the online version of the test is still unavailable in Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan & mainland China. Meantime, many test centers that would allow a student to sit for the exam in person remain closed. The at-home GRE will be available to test takers until Sept. 30, a deadline that likely will be expanded, but the GRE test also cannot be taken in either Iran or mainland China.