2011 Launch of the GRE® revised General Test Propels Program Volumes to Record High


Princeton, N.J. (February 8, 2012) —

Following several consecutive record-breaking years, the GRE® program reported that 2011 test volumes reached an all-time high at more than 800,000, officials of Educational Testing Service (ETS) announced today.

In a year when other higher education admissions tests reported flat or declining volumes, the 2011 launch of the GRE revised General Test led to the largest testing year in the program’s history and represented a 13% increase over last year. ETS officials believe the added momentum is due to the new test-taker friendly design of the GRE revised General Test combined with growing acceptance of GRE scores worldwide by thousands of graduate institutions, including business schools.

"We are excited to see such a sharp rise in interest in the GRE revised General Test because it ultimately leads to more people pursuing higher education. In addition, the growing use of GRE scores by business schools is great news for prospective students who now have more opportunities for success — applicants can take one test to pursue either graduate school or an MBA,"says David Payne, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of ETS’s Higher Education Division. 

In 2011, the GRE Program recorded growth in all major markets around the world. U.S. volumes increased nearly 10% from 2010, and ETS saw solid increases in important segments such as underrepresented groups, the variety of undergraduate degrees and individuals planning to pursue an MBA. Internationally, GRE test volumes increased nearly 25% over 2010. While growth was recorded throughout the world, including Europe, Africa and other regions, China saw a noteworthy 28% increase and India a 43% increase in test volumes.  

More schools than ever, including business schools around the world and international institutions, are accepting GRE scores for admission. In 2011, the number of business schools accepting GRE scores for their MBA programs climbed to nearly 800, up dramatically from 450 in 2010. International institutions accepting GRE scores also grew by nearly 10% in 2011. "GRE test takers now have access to more institutions than ever before with substantial growth in acceptance by business and international schools,"adds Payne. Leading schools who accept GRE scores for their MBA program reported to ETS that they are now seeing a growing applicant pool of GRE test takers. In addition, GRE score reports sent to international schools rose more than 17% in 2011 compared to the prior year.

"Accepting GRE scores is a win-win for both students and the graduate program," says Harvie Wilkinson, director of MBA programs for the Gatton College of Business at the University of Kentucky. "The student now has more options, and with that, the business school becomes more diverse; with different backgrounds working together, better projects are able to be produced."

2011 marked exceptional growth for the GRE Program, providing an even better test and a better testing experience, which is good news for potential students. Xie Fang, a GRE test taker in Beijing, China comments, "The GRE revised test is more convenient and user friendly than the old GRE test. I can move back and forth in one section and flag questions, this is really helpful."

For more information about the GRE tests visit www.ets.org/gre.

About ETS

At ETS, we advance quality and equity in education for people worldwide by creating assessments based on rigorous research. ETS serves individuals, educational institutions and government agencies by providing customized solutions for teacher certification, English language learning, and elementary, secondary and post-secondary education, as well as conducting education research, analysis and policy studies. Founded as a nonprofit in 1947, ETS develops, administers and scores more than 50 million tests annually — including the TOEFL® and TOEIC® tests, the GRE® tests and The Praxis Series™ assessments — in more than 180 countries, at over 9,000 locations worldwide.