GRE to GMAT Score Conversion: What You Need to Know

October 23, 2018

If you're beginning the process of applying to business schools, more than likely you're scratching your head and wondering which test you should take—the GRE or GMAT. In order to understand this slight dilemma, it's important to look at the difference between the tests. The GRE is more widely taken and used for graduate school admission. The GMAT, on the other hand, is the traditional b-school entrance exam. Why is there the possibility of choosing both now?

Schools are following a recent trend to accept either the GRE or GMAT in an effort to reach a more diverse student pool. The GRE is slightly cheaper and more widely administered, possibly reaching students that normally think MBA programs are out of their league. Finding out which one is right for you is important, particularly as it aligns with your admission goals and school(s) of choice.

This article is about the conversion chart that allows you to find out your GRE to GMAT score. This is a very helpful tool, particularly if you've already taken a practice exam for both and are trying to determine how your scores align.

GRE & GMAT: Both Viable

Thankfully, we are living in a day and age where there isn't just one exam to sit for when it comes to MBA admission. While schools have traditionally preferred GMAT scores, the vast majority are openly accepting both without a bias. In fact, a list below will reveal some of the country's more prominent universities who accept either exam, hopping onboard with this new trend: 

  • Wharton School of Business
  • Stanford Graduate School of Business
  • Harvard Business School
  • MIT—Sloan
  • Cornell University
  • Columbia University
  • New York University
  • Northwestern University

With the luxury of a choice as it relates to which test we choose makes us then question: Now which one is right for me? That is one that takes time to muddle through and determine in your own. However, in the end, it's nice to know there are conversion tables and charts in the instance you have taken one over the other and want to know where your score lands.

GRE to GMAT Conversion Chart

The below conversion table has been taken from ETS, the maker of the GRE, which can be found on their website—otherwise known as "GRE Comparison Tool". Converting your score can be of great use, especially when finding out where your score lands in comparison with a school or program's median score. Conversely, if you have been studying for the GMAT for some time and also wish to apply to graduate schools that only accept the GRE, switching gears with this conversion handy will help guide your way.

Below is just a sample of several scores. A larger table can be found on ETS' website.


Verbal & Quant Conversion

Of course, it may be easier to do your GRE to GMAT conversion section-by-section. This not only simplifies the process, but it also allows you to focus on which question types from which section to incorporate into your practice. Below is a table from ETS, charting the process from GRE Verbal to GMAT Verbal. Note: A GMAT Verbal Range is provided and not a precise score so as not to mislead in the conversion process. At this time, a range is the best one can do when determining their conversion score on these sections.

GRE VerbalGMAT VerbalGMAT Verbal Range

Similarly, below is a chart chronicling the Quant conversion—also taken from ETS. You will see similar ranges in the projected GMAT score, which hopefully shed some light on your studying and preparation process.

GRE QuantGMAT QuantGMAT Quant Range

Percentile Conversions

Similarly to determining your projected score, it's important to also know your projected percentile post-conversion. Why are percentiles important? Well, these help you factor in your competition when you're looking at percentile scores from other schools in terms of their study body. Keep in mind these are general conversions, as there may be one or two points margin of error in doing so, but these are aiming to give you a perspective on where you stand against your competition when in the throes of admission. The information from the tables below come from as well as

Verbal Reasoning Percentile Comparison
PercentileGMAT (0-60)GRE (130-170)
Quantitative Reasoning Percentile Comparison
PercentileGMAT (0-60)GRE (130-170)

When it comes to percentile conversions, it's important to note that the GMAT is apt to pick up variations of test-taking ability at the higher and lower ends of its scale; the GRE, on the other hand, facilitates more discrimination between mid-level test-takers. Also important to note is that very few people score below a 6 and above a 50 on the GMAT subscores. On the GRE, however, students are known to reach perfect scores in greater numbers. (But that isn't an excuse not to study!)

The Takeaway

Only you can determine which exam is right for your MBA application. Naturally, there may be a greater inclination for many students to lean towards the GMAT, since it is the traditional method of b-school admission. However, if you are simultaneously applying to graduate programs and need the GRE, for most people it doesn't make sense to study for two different tests at the same time. Hence, applying with your GRE scores is best.

Knowing where you stand in relationship to how your scores match up with one another is a great tool moving forward. Understand that there is a slight margin of error with all of these conversions, but ETS would not publish these conversion charts if they were not rooted in truth. Take your time as you study for either test and keep up you're your percentiles and where you add up with your competition. In the end, that can only make you a stronger candidate vying for a spot many other prospective students want, too.