The GMAT Score You Need For A Top Ten MBA

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The GMAT score you need to get into a “Top Ten”

Are your GMAT scores good enough to get you in to a Top Ten MBA business school?

How about if you’re interested in getting your EMBA? Are GMAT scores necessary? Do you even know what the average GMAT score for your target school IS?

You should.

That is what everyone wants to know, after all: is my GMAT even competitive for the programs I’m targeting?  What if I’m targeting Stanford, MIT, or Harvard and the Ivy League?  

Can I even get in?

Obviously, the higher your GMAT or GRE score the better chance you have of gaining admission to a strong MBA or EMBA program.

Additionally, crossing over that 720 GMAT line truly does put you in a different category with MBA business school ad com around the world.

My experience? The highest score of any client I personally worked with as an MBA admissions consultant was 780.  The applicant, a young man in his mid-twenties from NYC, didn’t have much in terms of professional experience.  In fact, due to downsizing at his company after the pandemic, he was forced to take a job just to survive, in an entirely unrelated career!  He had been in finance and now he was in lower-level tech.

In other words, though very smart, the applicant’s resume was a mess.

BUT…he took the GMAT and got a 780.  With that alone, regardless of his professional experience, regardless of a career that seemed pretty disjointed and fragmented, and not too stable right from the start, our 26-year-old applicant in question got in to all 3 of his target schools:

Columbia, Kellogg, and Booth.

My point?  A high score can mean an awful lot.

So, what are the average GMAT scores of the Top Ten MBA programs in the U.S.?

This great chart put together by the website Poets & Quant shows the average GMAT’s from the most competitive business schools around, including HBS, Stanford, Booth, Wharton, Kellogg, Columbia, MIT Sloan, Berkeley Haas.

Remember though, these are GMAT averages.  That means there were GMAT scores both above and below what you see here.  This means people got in with higher scores than this, and people got in with lower GMAT scores than the ones here.

Not hitting this exact score in other words doesn’t mean you can’t get in.

So, take a look below and see how your own GMAT scores compares!  Do you make it on the list?


In terms of the non-U.S. schools, I did the following research, and came up with these, again average, GMAT’s for the top non-U.S. schools:

  • INSEAD    704
  • LBS    700
  • Cambridge (Judge)  690
  • Oxford (Said)  690

Slightly lower than the U.S. schools, but still breaking 680 (in averages).

So, what does all this mean?  Overall, if you want to go to a highly competitive MBA program, you want to be hitting around 680+ on your practice tests and the higher the score the better, so studying and preparing truly helps and there are a lot of good online GMAT courses and books out there.

So, do your best, take the test, and get the GMAT score of your dreams!

Check out my other blog articles on MBA admissions, like this one here:

[I’m a former Harvard interviewer and a Harvard grad and currently run the MBA & EMBA admissions consulting firm Contact me for a free consultation today and get into the business school of your dreams! ]

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