Grad School Test – Which One Should You Take
According to Fred‘s data, in 2020, college graduates’ weekly wages were approximately 84% more than those of high school graduates. Hence, investing in higher education is a very smart decision. So, if you plan to get into grad school, it might be the most rewarding career move you would make in professional life. At the same time, there is a lot of clutter around the application process and what grad school test to take. Typically, these standardized tests that students take to get into a grad school are GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT, and TOEFEL. In this guide, we will walk you through these standardized Grad School Tests.
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Which Grad School Test Should You Take?
The grad school test a student takes would depend on the program that the student wants to choose in the grad school. In the application process, universities would specify which test scores are needed for gaining admission. In general, most grad school programs require GRE scores, business schools would need GMAT scores, law schools require LSAT, and med schools require MCAT. TOEFL is required for students who do not have English as their first language. Below we have specified the tests and what they are meant for, but students must confirm if the universities accept the test they are applying for before taking the test.
- Graduate Record Exam (GRE) – GRE is a test for Graduate and Professional Schools, Including Business and Law.
- Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) – GMAT is a test for candidates interested in getting admission into business schools.
- Law School Admission Test (LSAT) – LSAT is a test for candidates interested in getting admission into law schools.
- Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) — MCAT is a test for candidates interested in getting admission into medical schools.
- TOEFL – TOEFL is an English language proficiency test for getting into universities.
In some universities, one grad school test score will be accepted both in engineering schools and business and law schools. GRE is one such test. And sometimes, students might have to take two test scores to get into a grad school. For example, if your bachelor’s program was not taught in English, you might need to take the GMAT and the TOEFL test if you are looking to get into a business school. Hence, students would have to take different or multiple tests depending on their bachelor’s major and their medium of studies.
What are different types of Grad School Tests?
Even though the different grad school tests might have few common testing criteria, they are run by different organizations and accepted by different universities that back their test as a standard of admission into their grad programs. Below we would discuss these different grad school tests in detail.
- Graduate Record Exam (GRE): Whether you plan to go to graduate school, including business or law — The GRE General Test features question types that closely reflect the thinking you’ll do in graduate and professional school, including business and law. GRE tests the students on the aspects of ‘Verbal Reasoning’, ‘Quantitative Reasoning’ and ‘Analytical Writing’, which are the king of aspects that a student would require in graduate or professional school. Read more about GRE Test.
- Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT): The GMAT exam, used by more than 2,100 institutions and universities worldwide, is backed by more than 60 years of testing expertise and decades of peer-reviewed research, including hundreds of validity studies in the last ten years. GMAT exam was developed in intimate collaboration with the faculty of graduate management programs.
The GMAT exam is designed to test skills that are highly important to business and management programs. It assesses analytical writing and problem-solving abilities, along with the data sufficiency, logic, and critical reasoning skills that are vital to real-world business and management success. In June 2012, the GMAT exam introduced Integrated Reasoning, a new section designed to measure a test taker’s ability to evaluate information presented in new formats and from multiple sources—skills necessary for management students to succeed in a technologically advanced and data-rich world. Read more about GMAT Test.
- Law School Admission Test (LSAT): The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is an integral part of law school admission in the United States, Canada, and a growing number of other countries. The purpose of the LSAT is to test the skills necessary for success in the first year of law school. Those skills include reading comprehension, reasoning, and writing, and the test results help admission decision-makers and candidates alike gain valuable insight into law school readiness. The LSAT is administered in two parts. The first part of the test is a multiple-choice exam that includes reading comprehension, analytical reasoning, and logical reasoning questions. The second part of the test is a written essay called LSAT Writing.
The LSAT is the only test accepted by all ABA-accredited law schools, and it is the only test that helps candidates determine if law school is right for them. Some law schools will accept tests other than the LSAT for admission; however, students who want to maximize their chances for admission and be best prepared for law school are advised to take the LSAT. Read more LSAT Test.
- Medical College Admission Test (MCAT): The Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), developed and administered by the AAMC, is a standardized test. It is a multiple-choice examination created to help medical school admissions offices assess your problem solving, critical thinking, and knowledge of nature, behavioral and social science concepts and principles, which are all prerequisites to the study of medicine.
Preparing for the MCAT exam takes time and dedication. Balancing your preparation with an already busy schedule can be a challenge. The AAMC has resources and practice products to help you no matter where you are in the preparation process. Read more about MCAT Test.
- TOEFL: The TOEFL test measures your ability to form complex ideas and express them in English—skills you’ll need to succeed in an academic university environment. Students who take the TOEFL test arrive on campus better prepared, with a head start over their peers. The TOEFL test is preferred by 9 out of 10 U.S. universities. Also, U.S. universities receive more TOEFL scores than all other English-language tests combined.
Tips for Grad School Test
The key to a grad school test is recognizing which test to take and start preparing early. To achieve the same, one can breakdown the process of taking the grad test into the below components:
- Understanding your strengths and choosing subjects of study accordingly. This will give students a clear idea of which universities to apply to, what tests they approve of, and what tests to prepare and take.
- Once you have identified which test to take, one would know which subjects to prepare for. For example, if one is testing for GRE, one would know that they would be tested in ‘Verbal Reasoning’, ‘Quantitative Reasoning’ and ‘Analytical Writing’.
- This will give the student an understanding of what subjects to prepare for, and hence one can start scouting for the resources needed to prepare for the exams.
- Once you have laid your hands on all the resources required for preparing for the exams, make an assessment of the work required and register for the exam date accordingly.
- Register for your exams early. This will give you enough time to prepare for the tests.
- A prepared mind has the best possible chances of scoring well in the grad school test.
Additional Resources about for Grad Students
In conclusion, one might say that if you are ideating about taking the plunge into higher education and thinking of taking the grad school test, then it is in your best interest to give yourself enough time to prepare for the exams. Check with the university you plan to apply to, which grad test they accept and prepare accordingly. One important aspect to keep in mind when applying for a school is to check if the university is accredited. And if you are preparing for it, OMC has dedicated preparation guides for GRE and GMAT.
Students will also find it useful to know that many universities offer Master’s Programs that do not need a GRE test. Here is a guide for Online Masters Programs No GRE. While you are at, check out MBA programs that don’t need GMAT.