Graduate Management News
Data & Trends

GMAT® Registration Levels on the Rise

Who isn’t ready for the market to turn around? GMAT® volume and b-school applications have been through a difficult couple of years—but there are clear signs that things are poised to get better. In particular, the number of GMAT® tests administrations looks poised to increase during the coming months, particularly outside the United States. Registrations levels for the GMAT® exam are up in many parts of the world—hinting that interest in applying to business school may be on the rise.

Year-to-date non-U.S. GMAT® registration as of April 30, 2005, was 24,756, 6.4% higher than at the same point in 2004. India—one of the world’s largest sources of b-school students—Korea, and Taiwan led the way. Within the United States, GMAT® registration levels fell 2.7 percent during the first four months of 2005; overall registration levels around the world rose a fractional 0.1%.

Interest in the GMAT® exam is a reliable, if imperfect, gauge of future b-school application levels because people tend to register for the exam about three months before taking the test and apply to business school three months afterward. Moreover, GMAC® research shows that by the time the majority of MBA program applicants take the GMAT®, they have narrowed down their list of school choices to a group that includes the institution where they ultimately will enroll.

Although there is no guarantee that higher registration levels will translate into increased testing volume—and ultimately a larger global applicant pool for MBA programs—growth in the number of tests scheduled is a strong indication that testing activity is poised to rise.

Worldwide year-to-date GMAT® volume through April 30, 2005, was off 2.92 percent, to 61,131. The number of GMAT® tests taken in the United States during the first four months of 2005 declined 3.69% compared with testing volume during the first four months of calendar year 2004. Outside the United States, testing volume declined 1.25% during the period.

GMAC® and GMAT® are registered trademarks of the Graduate Management Admission Council® (GMAC®).
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