Ask Kate: Low Quant and Low Verbal

If you want acceptance into the top MBA programs, a good quant and verbal score is a must.



Hi Kate,

Would love your opinion on my score as well as my chances on getting in to the top 10 schools. This is my third attempt of the GMAT- first attempt 600, second attempt 630 and latest attempt 650 (q41,v39) while overall percentile is 77, quant is unbalanced (49%) and verbal is 89%. I have 5 years of varied work experience- including being a corps member to teach and worked in the edtech sector. Do you think I need a retake?

lowlow (1)Hi A.J.,
Good work making progress on your score over time. You are incorrect however in your assessment of your score. You are very balanced. 41/39 is balanced. And low. Your quant is far too low to be considered acceptable at a top 10 program and your verbal does not mask it. For example a 41/48 would put you in the 710 range so the 48 verbal masks the low quant.

Five years of varied work experience was also disconcerting. Feel free to clarify below. Think about business schools as wanting to groom the future leaders of the (business) world. Random variety is less desirable than planned diversity. That’s nice that you joined the corps though without knowing which one I can’t say how “nice” that would be considered by the schools. Some are selective, others are not.

Based on very little known about you, top 10 looks out of reach.

RE: GMAT retake?
It’s easier to cancel scores now – not a great strategy, but at least you can see your score and now cancel as opposed to the old days (pre-June 2014). Prepare for one final take. You are aiming for massive quant improvement and moderate verbal improvement. 70%/30% time split. I don’t like to see students take a 4th time, but your profile thus far would keep you totally out. You will have trouble at top 20 without improvement. ((Unless there are other keys of your profile you didn’t share))


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