As we close out the 2020/2021 academic year, this also means looking ahead to the 2022 application, which will go live around the end of summer, usually some time in August or September. We will send an email when the application goes live, and you can make sure you don’t miss it by signing up here.

What’s the same: The GRE/GMAT is still part of the Columbia SIPA application. We still do not have a minimum GRE or GMAT score for application, because the Admissions Committee reviews all of the materials for an applicant. (If it was just based on a test score, we wouldn’t have any need for personal statements or letters of recommendation!)

What’s different: Due to disruptions caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic, SIPA will accept applications for admission for January 2022 and September 2022 without GRE/GMAT scores. In short — you can request a waiver for the test, and you do not have to submit GRE/GMAT scores as part of the SIPA application this coming year.

What else to know: If you do not submit a GRE/GMAT score, you should review the other parts of your application to make sure you show your ability in the academic areas the test scores would have covered, such as verbal, quantitative, and writing skills. This could be through your transcript by taking quantitatively-focused classes like microeconomics or macroeconomics, or through exceptional writing in your admissions essays. It could also be shown through your work experience, such as through proposal writing or data analysis. There are many other options, of course – these are just examples.

On the other hand, if you have already taken the GRE/GMAT and the scores have not expired, as they can be reported for five years following your test date, you are welcome to submit them as part of your application. This will be helpful if you have strong scores, as it is another data point for the Admissions Committee to assess your application. And if you have a weaker GPA or transcript grades, a strong GRE/GMAT score can help bolster that.

I hope these guidelines of how to think about the GRE/GMAT test scores helps you plan out how to tackle the SIPA application this year, if you are planning on applying. If you want to see how a former SIPA student planned out her application timeline, check out Nabila’s post here — it’s one of the most popular posts on the Admissions Blog!