Asians & Indians with Low Stats - Can the EA Get You In?

It’s not great but schools kind of rely on Indians and Asians to take care of the foundation for the GMAT average (for schools that disclose, GRE as well) and when an applicant's stats are lower than the class average there would have be a very compelling and well-articulated upside (or celebrity) for them to get in despite this. 

In years previous, most schools did not publish their GRE scores so it was a bit of a back door; if you were underrepresented with a lowish score it wasn't factored into rankings so no big deal as long as you have a quant score that shows you can do the math. Or have some other evidence of quant aptitude.


However now the GRE is largely published for most schools. And this strategy isn't really effective for most overrepresented applicants. It is when they want to scoop up the diversity you offer in some form, or the promise of some unique contribution you can make; this diversity/contribution so compelling they are willing to deprioritize your test score in the evaluation process.


I feel at this point, the Executive Assessment (EA) represents a similar type of opportunity - you won't find an average EA score for any the schools accepting it. If you are part of an overrepresented demographic (Indian, Asian, white male to a lesser degree) and you can't pull up your GMAT or GRE to something a bit over the average, or the GMAT, do the EA route and apply to those schools. Top schools among these include CBS, NYU, Duke, Darden, Tepper, Texas and Georgetown.


You aren’t contributing to the GMAT or GRE averages, so that is a bit of a disadvantage, but if you can put together compelling applications, to where there is enough interest in everything else you bring, AND IT ISN’T COSTING THEM ANYTHING IN TERMS OF AVERAGES (read: rankings), you have better odds. In sum, it would be better if you help pull the GMAT or GRE wagon EA is not published, but if you have a good enough EA quant, and they are really interested in you, at least it isn’t costing them anything if they pick you.


To expand your school list, IF you have B or better grades in 80% of your quant classes (stats, calculus important) then I would recommend you go for the waiver option for Berkeley-Haas, Ross. Cornell, (MIT if you want to dream a little and have a B or better in stats and calculus.) To note, several possibly most of the schools accepting waivers also accept the EA; waiver acceptance criteria vary from school to school (work experience, GPA, CFA, test accessibility, etc.)


One final note, as someone overrepresented, to increase your odds apply EA or Round 1. They can’t pack the whole class full of one nationality so early bird gets the worm, ceteris paribus. Your admissions chances further increase if you choose the binding option.


#overrepresentedMBA #lowstatsMBA #EAMBA #testscoreMBA


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