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Don't Stress on the GMAT, 640 is enough for Stanford!

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Just found out a friend of mine was accepted at Stanford with a 640 GMAT. He was on the wait-list for a while but has now been accepted. He was also accepted first round into LBS.

His background is not extraordinary - worked for six years at a top 100 company (mining sector) in Australia, progression rate normal, but had fantastic references. He's also a great writer, so I'm guessing his essays were good.

I also heard (not sure whether this is true) that six people with an 800 GMAT score applied to Stanford last year, and all were rejected.

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by gt7er » Sun Mar 23, 2008 5:56 am
it seems that b-school applications are really not about numbers---like law school. i mean it definitely helps to have a high GMAT and a high GPA...but really there are so many people applying, that it doesn't matter. it sounds like you just have to show the admissions people why you want to go there and why you would be a good fit.

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by michelsmithm » Wed Mar 26, 2008 2:43 am
good to hear this even more relax i am now. :P

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Leonard C wrote: I also heard (not sure whether this is true) that six people with an 800 GMAT score applied to Stanford last year, and all were rejected.
For class of 2009? A member on another forum mentioned this in a post-- The Director opened his speech with the words "This year, we rejected every student with a 800 GMAT score"

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Neo2000 wrote:
Leonard C wrote: I also heard (not sure whether this is true) that six people with an 800 GMAT score applied to Stanford last year, and all were rejected.
For class of 2009? A member on another forum mentioned this in a post-- The Director opened his speech with the words "This year, we rejected every student with a 800 GMAT score"
the stanford story is two years old. but rumours still pass-on. it was in 2005/06 (admission process) they rejected all 800-guys

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by Auzbee » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:30 pm
If anyone has pointers to the speech transcript, I would be interested in reading it.

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by whatthehell » Wed Aug 06, 2008 9:31 am
ya guys keep bluffing about whatever makes you happy :D

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by Scottie@VeritasPrep » Wed Aug 06, 2008 1:40 pm
You probably already know this but business schools like to have a diverse student population. A super high GMAT score does not guarantee automatic acceptance however a very low score may get your application weeded out early in the review process. That's why it's so important to really differentiate yourself in your essays and interviews. Unique activities and interests often get the attention of admission committees.
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by ReachingHigher » Thu May 06, 2010 9:45 am
Hey All,

I really have to agree with the expert on this forum. I attended a Stanford event for women about one year ago. A few of those women were intelligent and well-spoken - but had low GMAT scores.

I think what happens is reminiscient of what used to happen to me in my highschool marching band days. My band director always said "the cleaner the program, the more errors I see". I feel it is the same here. When you see those ridiculous scores, high GPAs, typical backgrounds, etc. etc,, it gets BORING. I checked out a book that is aimed toward MBA school applications. They had a few real-life profiles of people with ridiculously high scores, good jobs, and good GPAs. Rejected every single time. Why? Well, they were very clearly unable to enunciate what they wanted to do with their career. Plus, their backgrounds were very typical. Nothing new and nothing spectacular. A school like Stanford always looks for something different. It happens.

Anyway, that is a testament to staying true to yourself. SO what if some school doesn't accept you. Someone will. Life is about chances...we all get one eventually.

Thanks for this post. It was very supportive.

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GMAT Score:640

by money9111 » Thu May 06, 2010 1:21 pm
BUT.....the GMAT is still very important! There may be some outliers in there but the mean GMAT score isn't a 726 because they've accepted a ton of 610's. How many people are going to be those exceptions? The middle 80% ranges from 680 -> 770. So yes that means that 20% scored lower than 680 but remember that 20% also scored higher than 770! So about 50 students scored between 780 and 800, while 50 other students scored less than 680. (Assuming a class of 250). Odds are... The last published number with the total number of applicants is 7,536. So 50 (.6%) people out of the total applicant pool were admitted. In order to be in that .6% you must be incredible.

"His background is not extraordinary - worked for six years at a top 100 company (mining sector) in Australia, progression rate normal, but had fantastic references. He's also a great writer, so I'm guessing his essays were good. "

The bolded words speak volumes. So can it be done? Sure...is it at easy as people would like to think? Not at all...

I'm right there with everyone else! I'll be taking the GMAT in 3 days, and I'm already banking on having to take it again, because I don't anticipate seeing a 720 score. So I don't want to come off as too cynical or condescending, but sometimes we need to look at the numbers.
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by ReachingHigher » Fri May 07, 2010 10:31 pm
Hey there,

Thanks for the post.

My original post was never meant to indicate that test scores are not important. My opinion is this - I agree with you completely.

However, it is nice to hear that someone was admitted with a slightly more unusual profile.

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by AloneAndInsufficient » Mon Jun 14, 2010 6:59 am
money9111 wrote:The middle 80% ranges from 680 -> 770. So yes that means that 20% scored lower than 680 but remember that 20% also scored higher than 770!
I believe that actually means that 10% scored lower than 680 and that 10% scored higher than 770

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by shahds » Tue Aug 10, 2010 5:48 am
hii..i gave my gmat today..got a depressing 640..was scoring around 690-710 in my mocks..bt was shocked to c d result in my final test..wad chance do i have in the top universities for masters in finance or masters in management degree??pls can some1 help me out wid dis..since i don think il get d best university of my choice, i plan to take the gmat again..is it the rite call?

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by shahds » Wed Aug 11, 2010 7:30 am
The following were the scores which i got in my mock tests:
Manhattan (M1)-660
M2-660
Kaplan-680
M3-660
M4-640
M5-690
Gmat Prep1-690
M6-710
Gmat Prep2-710

Final GMAT: 640

I was expecting a score abv 700 bt was not successful. Well now my aim is to crack the GMAT and get a 750.What should I do?What should be my strategy? Now that I've solved quite a good amount of material-OG,Kaplan 800...how should I go about my preparation now to achieve my aim?Please help..its urgent...i jus have a month's time!

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by Victory_GMAT » Sat Aug 21, 2010 12:47 am
gt7er wrote:it seems that b-school applications are really not about numbers---like law school. i mean it definitely helps to have a high GMAT and a high GPA...but really there are so many people applying, that it doesn't matter. it sounds like you just have to show the admissions people why you want to go there and why you would be a good fit.
I don't agree with you and also with next post. Reality is that GMAT is EXTREMELY important component of entire application process. The significance of GMAT is unexplainable and it cannot be treated at UNIMPORTANT or even LESS IMPORTANT. In this case reality could have been a bit different. Majority of successful applicants come from Management consulting, Accounting, Information Technology and few other traditional areas. If somebody is coming from Energy or Mining or Oil and Gas background then B-School will definitely consider that applicant which DOES NOT MEAN that GMAT is less important. Many veterans who served US Army in Iraq and Afghanistan, got admission in Harvard at GMAT score of 490.