Graduate School Tests

A hand holding a pencil hovers above a test paper
Applying to graduate, law, medical, or business school? You may need to take a standard examination. Most students will take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). Check with the program you are applying to in order to determine if taking the GRE is required.

Standardized tests level the playing field for students from a wide range of colleges and universities in terms of comparing their academic performance. A standardized exam permits two applicants' abilities to be compared fairly and is also the basis for awarding fellowships and other forms of financial assistance.

 

If you have a low GPA, exceptional standardized test scores can be a strong contributor to you being accepted. Be sure to prepare for graduate tests before taking one. Career Services also sponsors Kaplan Practice Tests each semester on the Brockport campus. Dates and times are posted on the events calendar.


Types of Tests

Schools generally require a graduate admission test, which you should plan to take approximately one year before your anticipated matriculation date. The tests vary by type of graduate study. Contact the school and department where you are applying to confirm whether or not you need to take one of the following graduate school exams.

The most commonly used exams are:

GRE - Graduate Record Exam: The GRE is often required for graduate programs in the arts and sciences. The general GRE includes both a general test and a subject test. The general GRE, measures analytical writing, quantitative reasoning, and verbal reasoning. The subject test assesses the qualifications of applicants in specific fields of study (biochemistry, biology, chemistry, psychology, computer science, literature in english, mathematics, and physics).

LSAT - Law School Admission Test: The American Bar Association requires a half-day standardized test for admission to any of the 196 law schools that are members of the Law School Admission Council (LSAC or Law Services). The test measures reading and verbal reasoning skills. Many law schools require that the LSAT be taken by December, nine months before law school begins. The Law School Admissions Council recommends taking the test earlier—15 months to a year before law school begins.

GMAT - Graduate Management Admission Test: The GMAT can be required for admission into an MBA or business program. The GMAT is a standardized test used by 1,500 graduate management programs around the world to assess the qualifications of applicants. Scores are used to predict your academic performance in the first year of graduate management school.

MCAT - Medical College Admission Test: The MCAT tests a wide range of skills, including problem solving, critical thinking, and writing. It also tests the aspiring students' knowledge of science concepts and principles that are prerequisites to the study of medicine. Scores are given in verbal reasoning, physical sciences, a writing sample, and biological sciences. Almost all U.S. medical schools require an MCAT before admission.

Other Graduate Admissions Tests:

  • MAT - Miller Analogies Test: Required for some Psychology programs.
  • OAT - Optometry Assessment Test
  • DCAT - Dental College Admission Test
  • PCAT - Pharmacy College Admission Test
  • VCAT - Veterinary College Admissions Test
  • TOEFL - Test of English as a Foreign Language: Often required of foreign students to attend school in an English-speaking country.

Transcript

Official transcripts of your undergraduate work must also be sent to the graduate schools you are applying to. Contact your college registrar to have your transcripts sent. Here is The College at Brockport's Transcript Request Form web page for your convenience. You will need to contact any other schools you have attended directly to request a transcript from them.

Admissions committees will review your transcripts with regard to the rigor and types of courses, the course load per semester, and your grades. The reputation of the undergraduate school will also be taken into consideration.

Resources

  • Kaplan Test Scholarship: Get a free Kaplan Test Prep Course, but there are some requirements. Contact us at (585) 395-2159, or csresume@brockport.edu for details.
  • Preparing for Standardized Tests (PDF)