Graduate School - Testing
Most graduate and professional schools require test scores for admission. The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) General and Subject tests are required by many academic programs (Masters and Doctoral degrees). MBA programs usually require the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT). Other tests are required in other fields such as the LSAT for law school, the MCAT for medical school, the DAT for dentistry school, the OAT for optometry school, and the TOEFL English proficiency test for international students.
It is very important to prepare for and take these tests early. While graduate school application deadlines vary, most will be in the December-February period. Given the above, it is wise to have your scores by fall of the year in which you will be applying (some 10 or so months before entrance). This will give you time to ensure that your scores are available in advance of the deadline, and possibly to repeat the test if necessary. A good piece of advice is to assume that nothing will work right and plan for plenty of time to correct errors. Hopefully, your application will experience smooth sailing. Further, if you are applying for a fellowship, you may need to meet earlier deadlines. So, determine a time that will allow for some preparation free of other major demands to take the tests. Be sure to consult admissions deadlines and the Graduate School Timeline to determine your optimal test date.
Sign up early to ensure that you can take the test on your desired date. There are no registration deadlines for computer based tests (GRE General and Written Assessment & GMAT), but registration is first come, first serve. The registration deadlines for GRE Subject Tests are approximately six weeks prior to the exam dates. Check with each testing organization to verify their policies.
Check each school's admission requirements to determine which tests you need to take. Currently, GRE Subject Tests are only available for Biology, Chemistry, Literature in English, Mathematics, Physics, and Psychology.
Subject Tests are only offered three times a year in April, September, and October. You must sign up for Subject Tests approximately six weeks in advance. Not all Subject Tests are available on every date, so check the GRE website for test availability well in advance.
Yes, accommodations are available and below are links to accommodation information for the major admissions tests. You can also contact the Disabled Students' Program (DSP).
- California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST)
- Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT)
- Graduate Record Examinations (GRE)
- Law School Admissions Test (LSAT)
- Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT)
- PRAXIS (Professional Assessments for Beginning Teachers)
- Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)