What Is a Good GMAT Score for Harvard Business School?

by Target Test Prep, Apr 7, 2022

Harvard Business School (HBS) boasts one of the most prestigious MBA programs in the world, so it’s no surprise that MBA admissions at Harvard are also among the most competitive. In fact, HBS’s acceptance rate is the second-lowest in the United States (Stanford GSB’s is the lowest); in fall 2019, HBS accepted just 11.5% of applicants.

Given the highly competitive nature of business school admissions at Harvard (and top MBA programs in general), earning a high GMAT score can be an important way to put some extra “shine” on your MBA application and get the HBS admissions committee to take notice.

The question is, how high do you need to score to put yourself at the head of the pack? In this article, we’ll take a look at the GMAT scores of students accepted to Harvard’s MBA program and some criteria for determining what score you need to be competitive.

First, let’s take a look at some key facts about Harvard’s MBA program to keep in mind when setting your GMAT score goal.

The ABCs of HBS

A renowned M7 school, Harvard Business School offers a two-year, full-time MBA program that has consistently ranked in the top 10 U.S. business schools and on numerous occasions has ranked at #1. In 2021, U.S. News ranked HBS #6 on its trusted list of the Best Business Schools. So, it’s no surprise that HBS’s acceptance rate has hovered in the 10-12% range for years, significantly lower than the average rate for the top 10 MBA programs, which was 17.4% in fall 2019.

Case in point: Of the 9,304 MBA hopefuls who applied to HBS in the 2019-2020 academic year, just 859 were accepted to the MBA Class of 2022. (HBS’s typical class size is around 930, but because of the COVID-19 pandemic, HBS offered the option to defer to all incoming Class of 2022 students.) Of those 859 accepted students, 732 chose to enroll, or just over 85%.

So, clearly, a seat in Harvard’s MBA class is both very sought-after and challenging to secure. If you’re planning to apply to HBS, your competition will be an elite crop of future leaders. Let’s take a closer look at what that competition may look like, starting with the GMAT scores of accepted students in recent years.

Harvard MBA GMAT Scores

In addition to its consistently low acceptance rate, Harvard Business School reports impressively high median GMAT scores among its accepted students, scores that have remained remarkably steady over the past 5 years.

To read the complete blog, please visit Target Test Prep's website.