About the Essential Skills Assessment

The Essential Skills Assessment is a 50-minute exam that allows admissions teams to quickly verify that a candidate has the necessary skills to complete a graduate management program. The online, no prep assessment provides you the flexibility to take the assessment at a time most convenient to you.

Structure of the Essential Skills Assessment

The assessment has two separate timed sections: Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning. The total score is the sum of the two sections scores, and it ranges from 0 to 15. 

 Test Section

Time Limit

Number of Questions


 Question Types

 Verbal Reasoning

20 minutes



  • Reading comprehension
  • Critical reasoning


30 minutes



  • Basic computation
  • Ratios & proportions
  • Basic algebra
  • Applied problem solving

 Essential Skills Assessment Sample Questions

Register and Schedule the Assessment

You should only take the Essential Skills Assessment if the program you are applying to requires or recommends it. The Essential Skills Assessment is not a GMAT or Executive Assessment replacement.  

To register and schedule an assessment, create an account  and purchase the Essentials Skills Assessment. Make sure you register with the same name and address as your government issued identification.

The assessment costs $129 and can be scheduled as soon as 24 hours after registration. You may retake the exam once and can schedule a retake session 24 hours after your first attempt.  

Exam appointments may be rescheduled up to 24 hours before your scheduled session at no cost. You may not reschedule an exam appointment within 24 hours of a scheduled session, and refunds will not be granted for missed testing sessions.

Review the Essential Skills Assessment Policies and Procedures page for details on our test rules, cancellation, and refund policy. 


Candidates requiring accommodations for their exam should visit our commitment to candidates with disabilities page prior to scheduling their session. 

Prior to Test Day

Make sure you complete the items below before your scheduled exam:

  • The Essential Skill Assessment is delivered through ProctorU, a secure, proctored environment. Install the ProctorU extension for Chrome or Firefox.  Other browsers are not supported.  
  • Confirm your system meets the recommended system requirements and internet connection requirements.
  • Important: If you are testing on an Apple Macintosh computer running MacOS Catalina (version 10.15), you must follow these special instructions to prepare your browser before test day.
  • Test your computer and internet connection that you will be using on test day using the "Test it Out" icon located at the bottom of the exam page. It is critical that this pass, otherwise you will not be able to test. If you have any problems, please follow the help link(s) and connect with a live support agent.

On Test Day

  • The examination must be taken in a well-lit, private, and secure environment. Taking the exam in a public environment (e.g., cafes) is not permitted.
  • Make sure you are in a clean environment. You cannot have electronics, papers, or other items in the area where you are testing.
  • You are permitted to have water in a clear, spill-proof container with no label.
  • Using pens, pencils, highlighters, calculators, scrap paper, phones, and other electronic devices are prohibited during the exam.
  • Login at least 10 minutes before your scheduled session to confirm you can access the test. Make sure you have your government issued ID available.
  • You will be asked to have your picture taken and will also be asked to take a picture of your government issued photo ID, so that we can verify your identity.
  • You will be asked to download and run an application called LogMeIn. LogMeIn will allow the Proctors to communicate with you, remote control your computer, and close unauthorized applications. 
  • A live Proctor will connect to your computer and walk you through the rest of testing process – this will take approximately 15 minutes.
  • The proctor will ask you to move your webcam around the room to ensure no unauthorized materials are in the room, and your phone is out of your reach. 
  • Once the test begins, you cannot get up from your seat or leave the room at any time.

Results and Reporting

Your unofficial score will be presented to you at the end of your testing session, and a copy will be sent to your email address. 

The school you selected at registration will receive your official score report within 7 business days of completion.

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