Graduate School Entrance Exams
Most students applying to graduate school cannot believe how few students even “average” graduate schools accept every year. Medical schools regularly accept only 5% to 8% of applicants, while law schools vary from 8% to 25% of applicants. Top medical schools and law schools accept only 6% to 10% of applicants. Graduate programs in other doctoral programs reveal similar levels of difficulty. MBA programs show more variance, but even moderately competitive schools have very high requirements.
We cannot underestimate the importance of undergraduate success – students with less than a 3.5 cumulative GPA stand little chance of gaining admission to even a moderately competitive program, and highly competitive programs expect a 3.8 or above.
In addition to GPA, every graduate school program utilizes an entrance exam, and all expect extreme proficiency. For example, on the LSAT (the law school entrance exam), top 25 law schools expect a 170, with 180 representing the highest score on the LSAT. Even more surprising, average law schools still expect a 155 or higher. Medical schools expect even higher performance. Highly regarded MBA programs expect a 680 or higher on the GMAT, and top Ph.D. programs want a GRE above 700.
In the ultra-competitive world of graduate school admission, performing well on the entrance exam cannot be underestimated. Success requires intensive preparation months in advance. Complicating matters, some of the exams, like the LSAT and the GMAT, test on analytical and logical reasoning skills in a manner most unfamiliar to even very bright students, who find the format and the time restrictions vexing. Writing has become a vital part of all of these exams, and many must be taken on computer – another unfamiliar and sometimes difficult wrinkle.
Our approach to preparing students for graduate entrance exams begins with the individual student and his or her goals and commitment to success. We design one-on-one instruction over extended periods of time to develop an understanding of the test design, a comfort with the question types, a mastery of key concepts and skills and a clam self-confidence we find critical to optimal performance.