Ten Tips for Taking the GMAT

Read through this advice to help you pass the GMAT.

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Most business schools require students to take the GMAT or the GRE before being admitted to a MBA program. This is a standardized CAT that is divided into three sections:

  • Verbal reasoning section
  • Quantitative reasoning section
  • Essay section

There is no sure formula to score high on the GMAT. The best thing that you can do is study, study, study. Create a schedule, and stick to it.

Relax.Remember, you have the option to cancel your scores after the test is complete.

The night before you take the test, be sure to get plenty of sleep. Studies show that your mind is more alert and focused when you get the proper amount of sleep. Make yourself a healthy breakfast that will keep you going for the three plus hours you are taking the test. Your body and mind will thank you.

Here are some helpful tips to keep you calm, focused and prepared to score high on the GMAT.

  1. Don’t forget two photo identifications. You will not be admitted into the test room if you don’t have these. Once you are there, the proctor will also take your fingerprint and a picture of you to ensure that nobody takes the test for you.
  2. Request earplugs from the proctor. There will be noise in the room caused by other test-takers entering and leaving the room, as well as conversations between them and the proctor. You don’t want any noise to interfere with your concentration.
  3. You should already know the directions before you start. The clock starts running once the directions appear, and you don’t want to waste precious time that you could be spending on answering questions.
  4. All questions are important. Some GMAT guides will tell you to pay closer attention to the first five questions because they determine your level of difficulty. While this is true, don’t sweat it if you don’t do so well on the first few questions. You have the ability to catch up after answering a few more easy questions.
  5. Pay as much attention to the verbal reasoning as you do to the quantitative. Some business school applicants have a false belief that MBA programs care more about the quantitative section. MBA programs care just as much about the verbal section because a business person that cannot clearly communicate is essentially ineffective.
  6. Do not keep your eyes glued to the clock. Most of your focus should be on the current question. Constantly looking at the clock will increase your stress and distract you from the task at hand.
  7. Make good use of your 5 minute breaks. Go to the restroom, stretch your limbs or do some calming breathing exercises. All of these things can help you relax and remain focused for the rest of your test.
  8. If you don’t know the answer, never randomly guess. Instead, use process of elimination. There are usually two answers that you can eliminate right off the bat. From there, you have a 33% chance of getting the answer correct, as opposed to the original 20%.
  9. Take advantage of your scrap paper. You will either receive paper or a dry erase board to aid in problem solving. Writing down the problems will take time, so you don’t want to rely on it too heavily. But, it can be a helpful tool when you need help visualizing a question.
  10. Relax. Remember you have the option to cancel your scores after the test is complete. While this is probably not your ideal choice, it’s better to re-take the test than send out below average scores.



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Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT): The Basics
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