What's the Difference between GMAT and GRE?

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Tests like GMAT and GRE are taken by many international students every year to get admission to abroad universities. Graduate Record Examinations are the full form of GRE and Graduate Management Admission Test is the full form of GMAT. GRE is administered by ETS (Educational Testing Service) and GMAT is administered by GMAC (Graduate Management Admission Council)
Not all courses abroad accept GRE or GMAT. Most of the international business schools accept only those students who are GMAT qualified, but there are also some business schools that grant admissions to only GRE qualified students. So you must know whether you need to take the GRE or GMAT. So in this article, we will be talking about the difference between GMAT and GRE.


There are 5 main differences between GMAT and GRE that every student looking forward to studying in international universities should know. We have listed them below:

Who takes the test?

  • GRE test takers include those students who want to get enrolled in popular business schools or who want to study postgraduate courses at different universities abroad. Over 100 international institutes, including leading business schools such as  Stanford Graduate School of Business and the University of Chicago, accept GRE scores for admissions into their popular business programs.
  • GMAT test-takers mostly include students who want to study only at business schools abroad, especially those who want admissions into MBA programs. GMAT scores are accepted by various well-known international business schools for over 1000s of business programs.

How is the test taken?

  • Though GRE is a computer-Delivered test, it is also available in a paper-delivered form at few test centers where the computer-based test pattern is unavailable.
  • GMAT is mainly a computer-based test and there are several registered test centers all around the world.

Exam pattern

  • GRE includes a 60-minute of Analytical Writing section which has two essays of 30 minutes each. There are two sections in the Quantitative Reasoning of 35-minutes in total. There are 2 sections in the Verbal Reasoning in which you will get 30-minutes in total. Additionally, there is also an experimental section that can either be math or verbal in which you will get 30-35 minutes.
  • GMAT includes a 30-minute Analytical Writing section in which there is only one essay, an Integrated Reasoning section of 30-minute, a Quantitative section of 62-minute and a Verbal section of a 65-minute.
  • It is believed that GMAT is for students who have analytical thinking skills whereas GRE is for those who have more logical thinking skills.
  • According to a specialist, the Mathematics section in GMAT is quite tough when compared to GRE math. So candidates who find it difficult to solve problems in GMAT mostly prefer to appear GRE.
  • The vocabulary of GRE  is considered to be tougher whereas the vocabulary and grammar of GMAT are less complex.

Score pattern

  • In GRE, a well-combined score is between 260 and 340, try to get 310.
  • In GMAT, a well-combined score is between 200 and 800, try to get 700.

Your career goals

  • When you graduate from a university with an MBA degree and start looking for suitable employment opportunities, you might come across many employers who ask for candidates’ GMAT scores. In such cases, you must do proper research before taking any such tests and select which will benefit you in the long run.
  • Though GRE is accepted by many international business schools, the GMAT is the most preferred choice by the majority of institutes and employers all around the world.

Which test is easier, GRE or GMAT?

  • Generally, the GMAT matches those candidates who have strong quantitative and analytical skills, who are also excellent at interpreting the given data in tables, charts, and text. The math section of GRE tends to be more straightforward and also a calculator is available for all quantitative problems, unlike GMAT.
  • Candidates who are strong editors may prefer to take the verbal section of GMAT while test-takers having strong vocabularies may prefer to take GRE.
  • GRE has a Quantitative Comparison while GMAT has Data Sufficiency which requires good preparation to get used to.

Which test should be taken?

The basics of choosing the GMAT or GRE for admission in international universities is are:

  • First, you need to check out that your chosen schools demand which test. If you find a school which accepts both the tests then you can take anyone. But if it accepts only one among them, then you need to find out about that, research upon it to clear your doubt through contacting the officials of the school.
  • Secondly, most importantly know which subject you are best at. Appearing for GRE or GMAT which would provide you with more score, so as to help you get admission in international universities easily. Know the GRE syllabus and GMAT syllabus.
  • Also, one of the important factors is your strengths so choose accordingly. If the school you have chosen accepts both the tests equally, then go for the one which you think you will do best in.
  • Lastly, whether you are appearing for the GMAT or GRE, ensure that you go into the test fully prepared. Check GMAT preparation


Details GRE GMAT
Exam Format GRE  is offered as a computer-based exam. Paper delivered is offered only in areas. The GMAT is a computer-taken test.
Exam Fee $205 $250
Duration The computer-based exam takes 3.75 hours and the paper-based test takes 3.5 hours (Paper) 3.5 hours
Validity 5 years 5 years


So now when you know the key differences between GMAT and GRE, it will become easier for you to make the decision about which test will work best for you. However, sometimes a mock test also can help you decide. The mock test of GRE and GMAT tests are meant for students who want to know the exam pattern and writing styles. Here are a few samples: GMAT Sample Questions

Some Universities are straightforward regarding the test that they prefer their students to take while some may not be. So it is better to do proper inquiries about possible universities that match your academic profile and then decide on which test to take.