- What is GMAT
- How many part do GMAT include
- GMAT Exam Review
- Why take GMAT exam
- GMAT Exam format
- GMAT score calculation
- GMAT preparation
- GMAT time allocation
The Graduate Management Admission Test® (GMAT®) exam is a standardized exam used in admissions decisions by more than 5,200 graduate management programs worldwide. It helps you gauge, and demonstrate to schools, your academic potential for success in graduate level management studies.
The four-part exam measures your Analytical Writing, Verbal, Quantitative, and Integrated Reasoning skills—higher-order reasoning skills that management faculty worldwide have identified as important for incoming students to have. Unlike undergraduate grades and curricula, which vary in their meaning across regions and institutions, your GMAT scores provide a standardized, statistically reliable measure of how you are likely to perform academically in the core curriculum of a graduate management program.
The GMAT exam’s validity, appropriateness, and value in admissions have been well-established through numerous academic studies. The GMAT exam is delivered entirely in English and solely on computer. It is not a test of business knowledge, subject matter mastery, English vocabulary, or advanced computational skills. The GMAT exam also does not measure other factors related to success in graduate management study, such as job experience, leadership ability, motivation, and interpersonal skills. Your GMAT score is intended to be used as one admissions criterion among other, more subjective, criteria, such as admissions essays and interviews.
Launched in 1954 by a group of nine business schools to provide a uniform measure of the academic skills needed to succeed in their programs, the GMAT exam is now used by more than 5,200 graduate management programs at approximately 1,900 institutions worldwide. Using GMAT scores helps institutions select the most qualified applicants and ensure that the applicants they admit are up to the academic rigors of their programs. When you consider which programs to apply to, you can look at a school’s use of the GMAT exam as one indicator of quality. Schools that use the GMAT exam typically list score ranges or average scores in their class profiles, so you may also find these profiles helpful in gauging the academic competitiveness of a program you are considering and how well your performance on the exam compares with that of the students enrolled in the program.
The GMAT exam consists of four separately timed sections (see the table on the next page). The test starts with one Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) essay prompt, and you will have 30 minutes to type your essay on a computer keyboard. The AWA is followed immediately by the 30-minute Integrated Reasoning section, which features 12 question prompts in four different question formats. The test ends with two 75-minute, multiple-choice sections: the Quantitative section, with 37 questions, and the Verbal section, with 41.
Verbal and Quantitative sections are scored on a scale of 0 to 60, with scores below 6 or above 51 extremely rare. The Total GMAT score ranges from 200 to 800 and is based on your performance in these two sections. Your score is determined by: • The number of questions you answer • The number of questions you answer correctly or incorrectly • The level of difficulty and other statistical characteristics of each question Your Verbal, Quantitative, and Total GMAT scores are determined by a complex mathematical procedure that takes into account the difficulty of the questions that were presented to you and how you answered them. When you answer the easier questions correctly, you get a chance to answer harder questions, making it possible to earn a higher score. After you have completed all the questions on the test, or when your time is expired, the computer will calculate your scores. Your scores on the Verbal and Quantitative sections are combined to produce your Total score. The Analytical Writing Assessment consists of one writing task, Analysis of an Argument, and your essay will be scored two times independently. Essays are evaluated by college and university faculty members from a variety of disciplines, including management education, who rate the overall quality of your critical thinking and writing. (For details on how readers are qualiﬁed, visit mba.com.) In addition, your response may be scored by an automated scoring program designed to reﬂect the judgment of expert readers.
The GMAT exam was designed specifically to measure academic skills needed for management education, and the test contains several question formats unique to the GMAT exam. At a minimum, you should be familiar with the test format and the question formats before you sit for the test. Because the GMAT exam is a timed exam, you should practice answering test questions not only to better understand the question formats and the skills they require, but also to help you learn to pace yourself so you can finish each section when you sit for the exam. Because the exam measures reasoning rather than subject matter knowledge, you most likely will not find it helpful to memorize facts. You do not need to study advanced English vocabulary or mathematical concepts, but you should be sure your grasp of basic arithmetic, algebra, and geometry is sound enough that you can use these skills in quantitative problemsolving. Likewise, you do not need to study advanced vocabulary words, but you should have a firm understanding of basic English vocabulary and grammar for reading, writing, and reasoning