This is a very interesting post, so I just wanted to leave my general thoughts on the whole process from what I have gathered thus far and from my general experiences in life, as I have thought about both quite a bit:
- I have a big issue taking them that seriously, depending on the subject that you studied of course. For example, if you studied Mathematics, I mean there is only a definitive way to do well on the test, to know the material. There isn't anything that needs to be critically thought out, 2+2=4 - we know that definitively. However, if you are studying something such as Economics or Finance where the theory diverges into different schools of thought such as Monetarism or Keynesian type policies or value investing vs. Modern Portfolio theory and your school only teaches and emphasizes one school of thought, perhaps you realized what they were teaching you was factually
not correct and perhaps not in your best interest to sit around and memorize. So instead, you took the information and applied it to the world around you to see what exactly you agreed with and what worked. Also, schools generally don't hold teachers accountable to teach classes, from my experience, the same exact way each year. So for example, you could have one teacher teach Microeconomics and then another teacher teach it and the difficulty level could be COMPLETELY different or one of the teachers could scale and the other could not. Teachers also have their own incentive to get students to score in the typical bell curve. Now if you want to exasperate this point of view, think about that from a point of view where there are 2,000 + colleges in the United States. However, if you are going to take the route I just elaborated on, you have to be able to prove it. Just as if you say you are really good at basketball you have to PROVE that you are really good; which in Finance, for all you finance buffs out there, takes time as not everything happens right away and there are lag times from when policies are implemented which effects security prices
. Alright next topic
- I think that obviously you want a 740 over a 700 or a 650. Again at some point though, you have to think that this is merely a test that some guy from across the country/ world made and maybe your time would be better allocated doing something else than fighting for a 760 instead of a 740. This is a barrier of entry, in my opinion, nothing more. It shows that you are intellectually capable to handle the target schools program. It says nothing about your character, who you are as a person, or if you are talented at what you do. It is merely the first step. I mean, all things considered equal, like Stacey said, if you have two identical candidates and John scores a 720 and I scored a 650 - John should probably be the one who earned
that position in a top B school. In fact, I would say he deserves it over me and tell him congratulations, but that is just my personality. In regards to the schools ranges of accepting people from a 500-780 I think that shows, in my opinion, a failure of accountability and basically allows the school to do whatever they want; however, I guess it is their school. In my opinion though, I don't care if it is George Bush's son, I don't think he should get into Harvard if Harvard is insisting on telling people that to get in they expect you to score in their general GMAT range. I guess there are exceptions to this; however, I would say that takes an emotional IQ and you should be able to defend it in a newspaper if you are going to argue that. There is a big difference in letting in George Bush's son who is let in simply because he has a prestigious name or letting in a guy from Africa who scrummaged through the trash to create electricity for a village of 10,000, and then without the internet and just one old 7th edition of the OG managed to score a 610 in hopes to one day start his own electricity business in Africa.
- I think this is probably the toughest thing to measure and completely almost circumstantial. Some people could have connections so they got a top analyst position at a large investment bank but may not be talented or even good at what they do. Others could have had horrible experiences working with people/ bosses who are irrational so that they got fired, and that thus reflects poorly on them as a person. I mean I don't really have any control over anyone else's behavior but my own, so theoretically you cannot MAKE someone hire you or if there is information asymmetry issues, you can't make them be honest. Let me use a hyperbole - There could be another Anderson Silva out there, but if no one lets him into the ring to fight or if he never had the proper trainers or dietitians assisting him he may never even have a shot. I mean it isn't as if he could MAKE the UFC give him a shot. I guess that is the job of the admission people is to find those people out there and give them an equitable shot. Good luck.
Ok those are just my general thoughts, take it or leave it.