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The Validity of Scores from the GRE revised General Test for Forecasting Performance in Business Schools: Phase One

Young, John W.; Klieger, David M.; Bochenek, Jennifer; Li, Chen; Cline, Frederick
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Report
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Subject/Key Words:
Revised GRE, Graduate Record Examination (GRE), Predictive Validity, Hierarchical Linear Modeling, MBA Programs, Graduate School, Graduate Business Education


Scores from the GRE revised General Test provide important information regarding the verbal and quantitative reasoning abilities and analytical writing skills of applicants to graduate programs. The validity and utility of these scores depend upon the degree to which the scores predict success in graduate and business school in specific contexts. To assess the predictive validity of the GRE test for graduate business programs, we collaborated with a number of universities and obtained data from each university's admissions office and registrar. We focused specifically on part‐time and full‐time students in master's of business administration (MBA) degree programs. Given the nested structure of the data, we used a 2‐level (representing students and institutions) hierarchical linear model (HLM) to estimate regression models with first‐semester MBA grade point average (GPA) or cumulative MBA GPA as the dependent variable and GRE scores and undergraduate GPA (UGPA) as independent variables. For predicting cumulative MBA GPA, the pseudo R‐squared (R2) value was .04 using UGPA, cohort year, and program type as the only predictors; this value increased substantially to .19 with the addition of GRE scores. The HLM results show that both GRE‐Quantitative and GRE‐Verbal scores were statistically significant predictors of both first‐semester MBA GPA and cumulative MBA GPA.

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