GMAT/GRE Waiver Policy
A GMAT or GRE score report is required as part of the application process to MBA@UNC for applicants with less than 7 years of professional full-time work experience as it is used by the Admissions Committee to help assess an applicant's quantitative readiness for the academic rigor of the program. However, a waiver may be considered for a candidate whose academic records and professional work experience demonstrate a high level of quantitative and analytical skill and ability necessary for academic success in the MBA@UNC program. (Click here for details on our GMAT/GRE requirements.)
Multiple factors are considered in the review of a waiver request. Elements that are considered include academic (specifically quantitative) undergraduate and graduate coursework and grades, the rigor of the college or university, previous work experience and current job responsibilities, and professional certifications. No GMAT/GRE waiver is automatic and an approved waiver request does not guarantee admission to the program.
1. Start an MBA@UNC application here and complete the following:
- You must complete the Academic Background: Colleges/Universities section for every college and university you have attended.
- You must attach scanned copies of official or unofficial transcripts from every college and university you have attended, even if you did not receive a degree. This also includes transcripts for college-level studies taken while in high school and any study abroad program for which your home institution was not the credit grantor.
- You must attach your resume in the Professional Background section of the application.
- While you must complete the specific steps outlined above, you do not have to complete the entire application to be considered for a GMAT/GRE Waiver.
2. Complete the MBA@UNC GMAT waiver application form
- Save the form to your computer as a PDF file. You can do this either using "Save Page As" or "Print as PDF," depending on the browser you are using.
- All fields are required.
- Be sure to include the following:
– All quantitative undergraduate and/or graduate coursework
– Current job responsibilities that specifically demonstrate applied quantitative and analytical skills
– Professional certifications with a quantitative focus (e.g. CPA, CFA, FINRA, Six Sigma)
- Submit the completed form via email to your Admissions Counselor or OnlineMBA@unc.edu.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the logic underlying the GMAT/GRE waiver policy?
We compared the academic performance of MBA@UNC students who had received a test waiver with the performance of students who had submitted test scores over a period of 18 months. We found no meaningful differences in the academic performance of the two groups. We therefore rely on what we believe are more reliable indicators of ability (e.g., career trajectory and success, previous academic performance, quantitative experience) than a score report for applicants who have a significant amount of professional experience.
Our admissions teams considers a number of indicators of what an applicant would bring to the UNC Kenan-Flagler community in our assessment of candidates, including:
- Academic readiness as evidenced by performance in undergraduate and previous graduate course work as well as standardized test scores and career progression
- Effective communication skills as evidenced by the essays and interview
- Recommendations from managers and professional peers
- Career focus and fit with UNC Kenan-Flagler's core values and culture.
We take a holistic approach to evaluating applicants by assessing all criteria for every applicant. For applicants who are further along in their careers, we have more data on career success in terms of achievement and trajectory, which in many cases can give us more visibility on future potential. For applicants with relatively little work experience, we have less data in their career records, and therefore rely more heavily on other indicators (such as test scores) to round out our view of their ability to succeed in the program and beyond. For students who are afforded a GMAT/GRE waiver, we are effectively saying that we do not need that single additional piece of data to evaluate that applicant for admission due to the strength of other data available.
Our admissions policy with respect to the GMAT and GRE differentiates between applicants with less work experience (who are consistent in experience with our full-time program) and those with more extensive experience (who are more consistent with students in our executive MBA programs). We continue to hold the same admissions standards for MBA@UNC as for our traditional MBA programs (full-time and EMBA).
See our class profile for a snapshot of our MBA@UNC students by the numbers.
How do you define the amount of full-time work experience?
The amount is based on the number of years and months of full-time work experience at the time of the application submission.
If the Admissions Committee determines that I will be required to submit a GMAT/GRE score report, when would I be informed of this?
In these exception cases, students will be notified after the evaluation of their completed application and contacted by the Director of Admissions.
Although the GMAT/GRE may not be required for me, may I submit a score report as additional information for my application?
We encourage students to submit the score report, particularly if they think that it would provide additional information about their abilities. Example: An applicant with limited quantitative responsibilities in their job and/or previous coursework would be encouraged to submit a score report to demonstrate their quantitative and analytical abilities.
Do you include MOOC course work in the review of a test waiver application?
MOOC course work with a quantitative focus (e.g. statistics, quantitative methods, financial accounting, finance) will be considered as part of the waiver application evaluation only if both of the following requirements are met:
- The course was completed from an AACSB accredited, top-20 ranked business school.
- An official and verifiable copy of the certificate confirming successful completion of the course must be submitted with the test waiver application.
If my waiver application is not approved, will I be denied admission to the program?
An unapproved waiver application does not mean that a candidate will be denied admission to the program just as a waiver approval does not guarantee admission. What it does mean is that the Admissions Committee is requiring the GMAT/GRE as additional information needed to evaluate an applicant's academic readiness and quantitative ability for the program.
For additional questions about this waiver policy, please contact one of our admissions counselors at 1.888.9UNC.MBA or via email at OnlineMBA@unc.edu.