Culture, Gender, and GMAT Scores: Implications for Corporate Ethics
- 1k Downloads
Business leadership increasingly requires a master’s degree in business and graduate management admission test (GMAT) scores continue to be an important component of applications for admission to such programs. Given the ubiquitous use of GMAT scores as gatekeepers for business leadership, GMAT scores are likely to influence organizational ethical behavior through gender, cultural, and other biases in the GMAT. There is little prior literature in this area and we contribute by empirically documenting that GMAT scores are negatively related to the cultural dimensions of masculinity and power distance and are positively related to math literacy, uncertainty avoidance, and individualism. We estimate that cultural factors may account for as much as an 80-point difference in cross-national mean GMAT scores which are also related negatively to local language literacy, national educational spending, wealth per capita, wealth inequality, and gender development. Most interestingly, we also find a significant negative association of GMAT scores with ethical orientation. These findings have important implications for business schools and corporate ethics and leadership.
KeywordsHigher education Cultural dimensions MBA programs Business schools
The authors are grateful to Kenneth Brown, Mary Funck, Pawan Jain, Debmalya Mukherjee, Janet Murray, Gabriele Suder, anonymous reviewers and others for useful comments, but remain solely responsible for the contents.
- Adams, A. J., & Hancock, T. (2000). Work experience as a predictor of MBA performance. College Student Journal, 34(2), 211–216.Google Scholar
- Berk, R. A. (1982). Handbook of methods for detecting test bias. Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
- Doney, P. M., Cannon, J. P., & Mullen, M. R. (1998). Understanding the influence of national culture on the development of trust. Academy of Management Review, 23(3), 601–620.Google Scholar
- Fisher, J. B., & Resnick, D. A. (1990). Standardized testing and graduate business school admission: A review of issues and an analysis of a Baruch College MBA cohort. College and University, 65(2), 137–148.Google Scholar
- Frankel, R., Swanson, S. R., & Sagan, M. (2005). The role of individualism/collectivism in critical classroom encounters: A four country study. Journal of Teaching in International Business, 17(1/2), 33–59.Google Scholar
- Hise, R. T., Shin, J.-K., Davidow, M., Fahy, J., Solano-Mendez, R., & Troy, L. (2004). A cross cultural analysis of the geographical knowledge of U.S., Irish, Israeli, Mexican, and South Korean business school students. Journal of Teaching in International Business, 15(3), 7–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Hofstede, G. (1980). Culture’s consequences: International differences in work-related values. Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
- Hofstede, G. (2001). Culture’s consequences. London: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
- House, R. J., Hanges, P. J., Javidan, M., Dorfman, P. W., & Gupta, V. (2004). Culture, leadership and organizations: The GLOBE study of 62 societies. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Jensen, A. R. (1980). Bias in mental testing. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
- Jones, T. M. (1991). Ethical decision making by individuals in organizations: An issue contingent model. Academy of Management Review, 16(2), 366–395.Google Scholar
- Kaufmann, D., Kraay, A., & Mastruzzi, M. (2008). Governance matters VII: Aggregate and individual governance indicators, 1996-2007. Washington, DC: The World Bank.Google Scholar
- Lombardi, M. (2005). Finland’s education system is tops: Here’s why. Teacher Newsmagazine, 17(5). http://bctf.ca/publications/NewsmagArticle.aspx?id=7988.
- Oh, I.-S., Schmidt, F. L., Shaffer, J. A., & Le, H. (2008). The graduate management admission test (GMAT) is even more valid than wethought: A new development in meta-analysis and its implications for the validity of the GMAT. Academy of Management Learning and Education, 7(4), 563–570.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Pagan, A. (1986). Two stage and related estimators and their applications. Review of Economic Studies, 53, 517–538.Google Scholar
- Pillai, R., & Meindl, J. R. (1998). Context and charisma: A “meso” level examination of the relationship of organic structure, collectivism, and crisis to charismatic leadership. Journal of Management, 24(5), 643–671.Google Scholar
- Sternberg, R. J. (2010). College admissions in the 21st century. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Stodder, G. S. (1998). Goodwill Hunting: Who cares about socially responsible business practices? Seventy percent of consumers, that’s who. Entrepreneur, 26, 118.Google Scholar
- Velasquez, M. G., & Rostankowksi, C. (1985). Ethics theory and practice. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar