The cost of the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT), which you’ll need to take to get into most top MBA programs, has increased by $25 (10%) in the US and Canada, starting from February 4th 2020.
The GMAT exam fees increase sees the cost of taking the GMAT rise from $250 to $275 and applies to all exams booked on or after that day.
The price increase doesn't affect other products and services from the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC)—the owner and administrator of the GMAT exam—or GMAT vouchers already purchased. It also doesn't affect the price of the exam in other markets.
GMAC raised exam fees in Europe in April 2019, but there hasn’t been a price increase in North America since 2005.
According to a spokesperson from the GMAC: “The GMAT fee increase in the United States and Canada enables GMAC’s ability to continue making investments and enhancements toward the quality and integrity of the GMAT exam, while delivering a streamlined testing experience that empowers test takers to perform at their personal best on exam day.”
“GMAC will continue to provide free resources for candidates to confidently prepare for their graduate business school journey,” they say, “while creating the best test-taker experience possible.”
Why take the GMAT?
While the GMAT price rise might be annoying if you’re just about to take the test, getting a good GMAT score is a worthwhile investment in both time and money.
The GMAT is not just an investment in getting into business school; it’s an investment in getting into the right business school and in getting access to more scholarships.
While the cost of the exam has gone up, a great GMAT score will still give you a greater edge in the application process and a better choice of quality business schools to apply to.
While the GMAT is not the only factor admissions committees look at, it can certainly make your application more competitive. It could be a factor in getting into your dream business school.
It’s also important to note that many merit-based scholarships are tied to GMAT scores. This makes sense as the GMAT is a good way for admissions committees to compare the abilities of applicants across industries and geographies.
A higher score could mean paying thousands of dollars less for business school. For many people, a scholarship could also mean taking on a lot less student debt and having more options and flexibility after the program ends.
GMAT and your career
The GMAT could open the right doors for your education, potential scholarships and even your career. There are still consulting firms such as Bain and McKinsey that look at your GMAT score when considering your application.
Most applicants believe the return on investment equation of an MBA is likely to be tipped in their favour by a post-MBA salary spike. The majority find the increased earnings potential is worth it.
According to GMAC, 93% of business school alumni say they would still pursue a graduate management education again knowing what they know now and a ‘financially rewarding experience’ is the primary driver of alumni’s retrospective decision.
Although the overall cost of business school is undoubtably hefty, it is still a valuable investment in your career and future
Read more on the GMAT…