Another Top MBA Program Won’t Require A GMAT Or GRE In 2022-2023

The University of Notre Dame Mendoza College of Business joins several top MBA programs in allowing GMAT waivers for applicants to its MBA and other graduate business programs for the 2022-2023 cycle

The last few years have been hard on the Graduate Management Admission Test.

Once the undisputed king of entrance exams for graduate business schools, the GMAT has been losing market share to the Graduate Record Exam amid a dramatic, years-long decline in the number of test-takers globally. The GMAT lost major cache earlier this year when U.S. News removed it (along with the GRE) as a rankings metric.

The Covid-19 pandemic accelerated the GMAT’s decline, as many business schools waived the test in an acknowledgement that it was too often a logistical hardship. (Some B-schools have gone further, declaring a preference for a more “holistic” admissions process that de-emphasizes entrance exams altogether.) Test waivers have continued even as MBA programs have returned to a more normal state of affairs.


Notre Dame’s Joe Sweeney: “We are continuing to assess the overall success of candidates who have joined our program without a test score”

Even as MBA students have mostly returned to the classroom in person and other pandemic adjustments have been dropped, the appeal of eschewing the GMAT endures for many B-schools. Now another top school, Notre Dame Mendoza College of Business, has announced it will join others in extending its GMAT/GRE waiver policy for the 2022-2023 application cycle.

“Initially the GMAT/GRE waiver was offered in response to challenges related to ability to take the exams during the Covid-19 pandemic,” Joe Sweeney, Notre Dame’s MBA academic director, tells Poets&Quants. “The continuation of the waiver reflects the reality that the lingering effects of the pandemic continue to impact access and testing experience.”

Sweeney suggests that the waiver policy may continue even past the current application cycle.

“We are continuing to assess the overall success of candidates who have joined our program without a test score to help inform long-term strategy related to enrollment criteria and evaluation,” he says.

Notre Dame’s early-decision deadline for MBA, specialized master’s (including its MS in Management, MS in Accountancy, MS in Business Analytics, MS in Finance, and Master of Nonprofit Administration), and executive MBA programs is September 13; its final, Round 4 deadline is May 2, 2023. See the table below for all application, interview, and notification dates.

MBA/Specialized Masters/EMNA/ EMBA Application Deadlines Virtual Interview Dates Decision Release
Early Decision Sept 13 Oct 11-12 November 4
R1 Nov 1 Nov 16-17 Dec 16
Nov 30-Dec 1
R2 Jan 10 Jan 31-Feb 1 Mar 17
Feb 14-15
(Tentative) Feb 21-22
R3 Mar 14 Mar 28-29 Apr 28
April 4-5
R4 May 2 May 16-17 Jun 2


Applicants to Notre Dame’s MBA program this cycle can submit a written request for a test waiver within the application. Additional considerations pertaining to test waivers are listed here.

Meanwhile, the Mendoza College has streamlined its essay requirement from last cycle. Applicants are invited to choose the essay prompt they find the most compelling to share with the admissions committee. See the new prompts below.

Prompt 1:

“The University of Notre Dame was founded in 1842, by Father Edward Sorin, C.S.C, with a mission to become ‘one of the most powerful means for doing good in this country.’ In 1879, Father Sorin’s vision for Notre Dame seemingly came to an abrupt end when a massive fire destroyed the main building that housed the entire university.

“Instead of giving up, Father Sorin interpreted the fire as a sign that his dream was too small. He then decided to rebuild, bigger and better. The now iconic main building still stands today, topped by the gleaming Golden Dome, as an ongoing symbol of perseverance and vision.

“Tell us about a time, in your personal or professional experience, when you persevered and overcame obstacles or you had to start over and rebuild.”

Prompt 2:

“The foundation of a Notre Dame business education is the vision of the College’s founder and first dean, John Cardinal O’Hara: ‘The primary function of commerce is service to mankind.’ Students choose Notre Dame because they are willing to Grow the Good in Business™. They look beyond profits and shareholder value and drive decisions based on values and a greater good. Please describe what ‘growing the good in business’ means to you.”


Questions about this article? Email us or leave a comment below.