World economic indicators all point to a growing demand for master-level business degrees. In today’s global economy, we all need to have an entrepreneurial mind-set to survive. If you’re serious about furthering your education at a top business school or planning on studying a management course abroad, the GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) will be the first step on your journey toward the MBA (Masters in Business Administration) program. The GMAT Test is a standardized exam administered only by computer and designed to predict how test takers will perform academically in MBA programs. GMAT scores are used by graduate business schools to make admission decisions. The test is accepted by more than 6,000 business and management programs worldwide for admission, although an increasing number of schools also accept GRE General Test scores as an alternative to GMAT scores. Schools that do not require GMAT scores nevertheless welcome GMAT scores to help access an applicant’s qualifications. The GMAT is required for admission to most US, Canadian and European management schools and many business schools for MBA programs globally. The GMAT exam – created by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), the global non-profit council of business schools – sets the standard for its ability to predict success in the classroom.
GMAT provides vast array of exciting opportunities including study abroad, career advancement, and personal growth. Also, in India the GMAT exam is accepted for admissions at more than 200 programs offered at over 100 business schools like IIM, XLRI, ISB etc.,
Format of the Test
The GMAT exam is primarily a multiple-choice test made up of different types of questions so that you can demonstrate your ability in several skills required to be successful in graduate school. On test day, you have three and a half hours to complete the four sections of the GMAT exam – Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative, and Verbal.
|GMAT Test Section||# of Questions||Question Types||Timing|
|Analytical Writing Assessment||1 Topic||Analysis of Argument||30 Minutes|
|Integrated Reasoning||12 Questions||Multi-Source Reasoning
|Quantitative||37 Questions||Data Sufficiency
|Verbal||41 Questions||Reading Comprehension
|Total Exam Time||3 Hrs, 30 Minutes|
Quantitative & Verbal sections are computer adaptive; each score is based on the number of questions you correctly answer with its level of difficulty and other qualities of the questions you answered. You will earn a higher score if you answer a higher number of questions, answer more of them correctly, and qualify for questions of a higher difficulty level. The first question will be of medium difficulty. If you answer it correctly, the next question will be a little harder. If you answer it incorrectly, the next question will be a little easier. Along with the regular sections student have to appear for the experimental questions as well. But, you won’t know which questions are experimental.
When you complete your exam, you will be shown your unofficial GMAT scores (Verbal, Quantitative, Integrated Reasoning, and Total). There is no minimum score that students much achieve.Total GMAT scores range from 200 to 800. The total score is a scaled combination of the verbal and quantitative scaled scores, and thus reflects a student’s overall performance on the multiple-choice sections of the test. The AWA score is independent of and has no impact on the total scaled score.Your Official Score Report will include several ways to interpret your exam results. You may be tempted to pay attention only to your Total score, but the other scores are also meaningful. Those scores offer you and the programs receiving your scores insight into your strengths and areas for development.The percentile rank of your score shows you the percentage of tests taken with scores lower than you for the most recent three-year period. Every year, each test taker’s score is updated with the most recent year’s percentiles.The percentile is another way for you to compare yourself with others who took the GMAT exam, because it tells you the percentage of test takers who scored lower than you. Official scores are sent by email within three weeks of test date. The scores are valid for 5 years.
Registering for the GMAT test:
The test can be given all year round with prior registration and depending on the availability of dates. A student must sign up as a registered user at www.mba.com to schedule the test online by making a payment of $125 by credit/debit card. Exam centres are available in Hyderabad and Visakhapatnam.
B-school admission requirement:
Each graduate business school develops and implements its own policy concerning the use of GMAT scores in making admissions decisions. Using a combination of GMAT scores, transcripts, work experience, essays, and interviews, admissions professionals strive to build strong, cohesive cohorts each year. Comparing each individual GMAT score with the most recent three years of test scores gives them a more complete picture of the b-school applicant pool. Achieving a total score of 650 out of 800 makes it a good score putting you in a decent percentile. Also checking with the institutions you are planning to apply will help you understand the score requirements better because the requirements varies according to the program and the institute’s ranking.
How to prepare:
Generally the time needed for preparing for the GMAT is 2 to 6 months, depending on individual abilities. Coaching under an expert trainer on the subjects will definitely help you score better while cutting down the preparation time. It’s important to keep a preparation plan with a schedule then monitor your progress by taking the mock tests provided and stay positive. The most important way to prepare is to become familiar with the GMAT exam. The keys to a successful GMAT exam are knowing your own skill and ability level, what areas you are good at, and what you still need to master and adjust your own study habits accordingly. Familiarize yourself with the test structure, format, and types of questions you will face. Practice questions with answer explanations, and two full-length practice tests based on retired questions which are available for free to registered users of mba.com, the official GMAT test maker. Ultimately, it’s how smart you study, not just how long you study that matters. Plan a study strategy that allows you however much time you need to feel prepared and one that addresses your own test-taking challenges so that your exam results reflect your ability.
The following resources will provide you more information and preparation guidance on GMAT: