Both the Graduate Management Admission Test and the Graduate Record Exam continued their slide in prominence in the admission process at the top online MBA programs in 2022. In fact, a majority of students didn’t report graduate test scores at nearly all the top programs surveyed by Poets&Quants.
Only five schools in P&Q’s fifth annual ranking of top online MBA programs, released today, collected GMAT or GRE scores from more than 50% of its enrolling students. This continues a similar trend found in last year’s rankings when COVID severely impacted admission process at both traditional and online MBA programs.
University of Washington (Foster) had 75% of its 2022 online MBA students submit either GMAT scores (33%) or the GRE (42%). From there, the numbers fall dramatically. Just 54% of students submitted test scores to Oklahoma State University (Watson), 51% to both Carnegie Mellon University (Tepper) and SUNY Oswego, and 50% to Arizona State University (W.P. Carey).
Further, just 13 of 52 surveyed schools had 10% or more students submit GMATs this year, or 25% of total schools. That’s down from just over 33% of schools last year and 50% of the top-ranked programs in 2020. Fewer still had 10% or more of students submit the GRE: just 8 of 52, or 15%. That is down sharply from the 18 schools in last year’s ranking with 10% or more students reporting the test.
OVERALL GMAT SUBMISSIONS, SCORES FELL FROM LAST YEAR
Among the 39 online MBA programs that collected GMAT scores this year, the average score was 584.2, down 65.2 points from last year’s 649.4 average of 42 B-schools that collected. The average score for schools that had 10% or more students submitting the GMAT was 599.4, compared to 589.6.
For the second straight year, Baylor University’s Hankamer School of Business had the highest overall average GMAT Score of 690 (up from 687 in 2021). However, only 0.97% of its students reported the GMAT to admissions. Carnegie Mellon University (Tepper) came in second with an average score of 684 but had significantly more students submit the test, 41%. The top overall school in this year’s ranking, University of Southern California (Marshall) had the 10th highest GMAT score (619) with 10 percent of students reporting.
DIFFERENT TEST, SIMILAR STORY FOR GRE
This year, 37 of the 52 surveyed schools had at least some students submit GRE scores, with an average score of 304.2. Of those 37 schools, the average student submission of GREs was 7.64%. That’s down sharply from the 11.6% average GREs submissions in last year's ranking.
CMU Tepper had the top average (verbal plus quant) at 324, exactly what it scored last year when it also boasted the top GRE average. However, only 10% of its students submitted GRE scores compared to 21% in 2021. The top five was rounded out by University of North Carolina (Kenan-Flagler) (318 average GRE score with 2% students reporting), University of Wisconsin MBA Consortium (317 with 9.45% reporting), Baylor University (Hankamer) (315 with 1.45% reporting), and American University (Kogod) (315 with 0.54% reporting).
University of Washington had the highest percentage of students reporting GRE scores at 42%, followed by Arizona State University (W.P. Carey) at 32% and University of Texas-Dallas (Naveen Jindal) at 20%.
GPAS RISE, SHAKE UP LEADERBOARD
One metric that did rise this year is undergraduate GPA averages. Even as programs continue grant waivers from the graduate level admissions tests, how students scored in their previous academic lives still appears to matter.
Ohio University had the highest undergraduate GPA average of the 52 surveyed schools this year with a 3.8 (up from 3.2 in 2021). The highest GPA average recorded last year was Worcester Polytechnic Institute (3.54), but the school ranked 14th for GPA this year (3.39).
Four of last year's the top 10 online MBAs in terms of GPA returned to the list this go around. University of Texas-Dallas (Jindal) had the second highest GPA in 2021 (3.48), but the third highest this year (3.54) despite its own average increasing. University of Massachussets-Lowell was 4th last year (3.46) and 7th this year (3.42) while Washington State University fell from 6th place (3.43) to 8th place (3.42). University of Washington (Foster) meanwhile rose eight places to No. 2 this year with a 3.42 GPA in 2021 and a 3.55 in 2022.
See page 2 for a comparison for all 52 schools on GMAT and GRE scores, percentages of students reporting test scores, and average GPA.
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