- Test Overview
The GMAT is the Graduate Management Admissions Test is a computer adaptive test in English. Test-takers are typically those who want to further their education and apply to enroll in a business school.
The GMAT includes four sections and is an average of three hours long. The sections that it covers includes Analytical Writing, Integrative Reading, Quantitative, and Verbal. The score that an individual earns on the test is valid for five years.
The test includes a $250 fee, and applicants must register in advance by phone or email to reserve a seat. Applicants can register up to six months in advance. Rescheduling the test within seven days of the planned date results in a $50 fee.
The GMAT can be taken once every 31 days but applicants are limited to taking the test five times each year.
2. Scoring Overview
Several different numbers contribute to the GMAT score that a test-taker earns. Overall scores range from 200 to 800 in 10-point increments, which is influenced by scores that are earned in the Verbal and Quantitative sections. Business schools focus the most on the overall score that is earned by the applicant. Each section of the test is graded individually. Average scores are between eight and 51.
The Analytic Writing Assessment section has a scoring scale of zero to six that is rated by both a computer and a human. The Integrated Reasoning section is scored in one-point increments from one to eight. All of the questions include different parts and the answers that are submitted must be accurate to earn each point. The two scores are averaged by the GMAC with the scores rounded to the nearest half point. If the test is taken multiple times, the GMAC will report all of the scores within the five-year period.
The top five schools include Harvard University, University of Chicago, Northwestern University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Stanford University. The top 15 schools in the country require a GMAT score of 697, which includes Cornell University and Georgetown University.
- Explanation of Each Section
The test structure of the GMAT includes four sections with Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative, Integrated Reasoning, and Analytical Writing.
The Verbal Reasoning section of the test includes reading comprehension, sentence correction, and critical reasoning. 41 questions are included in the section, which must be completed in 75 minutes. Each question is multiple-choice. It measures the individual’s ability to read and understand written material while also evaluating arguments and to correct content that is provided.
The Quantitative section features two different types of multiple-choice questions with problem-solving and data sufficiency. 37 questions must be answered in 75 minutes. Test-takers must have the math knowledge of an 11th-grade student but there’s still a high level of reasoning required. Calculators cannot be used to answer the questions. The section measures the test-taker’s ability to analyze data and draw conclusions with the use of reasoning skills.
Test-takers must also complete an Integrated Reasoning section that measures the individual’s ability to read and understand written material while analyzing data and evaluating information that is presented in different formats.
The Analytical Writing section requires test-takers to write an argument in an essay form. The individual must analyze the logic of the given position and discuss where there are faults or where there’s room for improvements. 30 minutes is provided for this section with only one topic that needs to be covered.
The GMAT can only be taken on a secure computer that is administered at an approved testing center. The four sections do not need to be completed in a specific order.
- When you Should take it (Career wise)
The GMAT should be taken when you’re ready to enroll in business school and further your education, which can lead to advancing in your career or getting a job promotion. Some people may consider taking the GMAT when they’re still an undergrad because undergrad students often have more time in their schedule to study, which can offer flexibility with scheduling a specific date to take the test. It also means being refreshed on the concepts of GMAT, which includes skills that are required to excel in the quantitative section.
Those who are still unsure about if or when they’ll apply for business school can still take the GMAT because the score is valid for up to five years. Approximately 80 to 100 hours are needed to prepare for the test over a two to three month period. It’s also necessary to leave extra time to retake the test, if necessary.
If you’re looking to have a career as an engineer, project manager, a financial analyst, consultant, marketing exec, or a start-up founder, then it may be time to pursue your MBA. Other reasons to attend a business school is if you’re looking to become a financial analyst.
An MBA is an asset that can allow you to gain a better understanding of business and have a formal business education for accounting, human capital development, marketing, and finance.
If you’re preparing for an upcoming GMAT, you can obtain the right resources with Test Prep Club’s books and courses that are available. We offer an official guidebook for the GMAT for each year to provide test-takers with the latest information and tips on excelling and scoring well. You can obtain real source material and knowledgeable insight that allows you to stay busy with studying. The books include trap avoiding tactics and step-by-step problem guides to help you to become more experienced with the test.
Our GMAT prep courses are also thorough and allow students to practice taking the test and reviewing their results multiple times with the help of an instructor. Prep courses are thorough and can allow students to focus on sections that they may not be skilled in on the test. Online courses are also available for those who want to learn at their own pace and work remotely while preparing for the test day.