You may already be familiar with the GMAT if you’re considering an advanced degree, such as an MBA or other graduate business degree program. Alternatively, if you’re just starting to consider how an MBA will help you progress your career, you may not have begun your study or preparation yet. In either case, the GMAT will be an important part of your journey.
It not only demonstrates and measures your individual ability and talent as a student and business professional, but it also forecasts your academic success inside a school’s graduate program. It measures “higher-order” reasoning skills such as complex judgments, critical thinking, and problem-solving, as well as your decision-making ability and business mindset.
The GMAT is required for admission to the vast majority of MBA programs. To give time for your scores to be reported to schools, prospective b-school students should take the exam at least two months ahead to your preferred schools’ application deadline.
Because your GMAT score will determine whether or not you are accepted, it is prudent to prepare for it.
Here are some things to remember when you prepare for the GMAT exam:
The GMAT exam syllabus is divided into four sections, with the GMAT analytical writing section being the first. This section, where you will be asked to focus on one topic, will measure your critical thinking and ability to communicate ideas. You’ll be given an argument to analyse and evaluate on this issue. The GMAT Integrated Reasoning section is the second part of the exam, and it consists of twelve questions that assess your ability to evaluate information. The GMAT Quantitative Reasoning section follows, where you will be given facts that you must analyse and derive conclusions from. The GMAT Verbal section is the last section of the exam, and it measures your ability to read and understand written information as well as analyse arguments and correct written material.
This means you’ll be taking the test on a computer, and the computer will adapt the questions to your skill and knowledge based on how well (or badly) you answer each one. If you answer correctly on an intermediate topic, for example, the next question will be more difficult, and vice versa. The difficulty of the questions answered and the number of right responses will determine your score in these sections.
For each section, you will be given a score. GMAT Analytical writing is scored on a scale of 0 (lowest) to 6 (highest) in half-point intervals. GMAT Integrated reasoning is graded on a scale of 1 to 8 in single digit intervals, while qualitative and verbal reasoning are graded on a scale of 0 to 60.
The GMAT total score ranges from 200 to 800, with ten-point increments, and exclusively considers verbal and quantitative scores. Around two-thirds of all examinees receive a total score in the 400 to 600 range. A percentile rank is also included in score reports.
Official scores will be sent to you within twenty days after the exam, and they will be valid for five years. This is important information when deciding when to take the GMAT. If you’ve already decided on a school and program, you’ll need to arrange your test around the deadlines set by the school. However, if you’re still undecided about when you’ll apply to schools, keep the validity period in mind.
The GMAT is not a pass/fail exam. The score you’ll need is determined on the school and program to which you’re applying. Most business schools will state whether they accept a range of scores or a specific score. Setting a goal for yourself with the required score in mind will aid you in preparing for the exam utilising various diagnostic and practise tests, as well as any other resources that work best for you.
You should take the GMAT practice test often, every week. Find out by taking a full-length GMAT practice test under realistic testing conditions. Try your hand at the types of questions you’ll see on the real test and get a personalized score report highlighting your strengths and areas of improvement. By doing more and more GMAT computer-adaptive practice tests you can understand the format clearly and reviewing one section at a time will help you to achieve the best GMAT score.
This will give you an estimate of how much time you’ll need to prepare for the GMAT exam. It’s a good idea to make a study schedule that takes into consideration your other commitments (job, school, etc.) to figure out how many days or weeks you’ll need to completely prepare and review for all sections of the GMAT exam.
The test is entirely conducted in English. This is important information for test takers who struggle with the language or are unsure of their ability to comprehend and speak in it. If you believe you will need to spend time improving your English before taking the exam, you should include this in your GMAT preparation. This is something you’ll need to accomplish before you start studying for the GMAT exam.
Mobile phones, notes, scratch paper, pens, dictionaries, thesauri, watches, and other gadgets will not be permitted on test day; only identification, a list of programs to which your score must be sent, and your appointment letter will be allowed. You will have three hours and thirty minutes to complete the test, with two optional breaks. There are also country test centre regulations, so make sure you familiarise yourself with the ones that apply to the country where you’ll be taking the test.
The level of complexity is what makes some GMAT questions more difficult than others. GMATT problems that are difficult often require more than one step to solve and involve many reasoning tasks or concepts.
GMAC, the organisation that administers the GMAT, ensures that B-schools obtain genuine GMAT results by sending the scores to them. Candidates can choose up to five B-schools to apply to and send their scores to on the day of the test. Candidates will, however, be charged an extra cost for sending score reports to business schools after the GMAT results are announced.
For the exam, candidates are not permitted to bring their calculators. Candidates are given a simple calculator by the test centers, which can only be utilised during the Integrated Reasoning section. In the Quantitative part, candidates are also given markers and note boards to complete the calculations.
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