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Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT)

If you are aiming for the top business schools, then getting a high GMAT score is very important. Since the test is modeled to evaluate your analytical and verbal skills, both very important parameters to perform well in a management course and to deal with real life business situations, a high score will project you as a potential asset to the college you are targeting. The good business schools need a very high GMAT score, upwards of 680, just to qualify for an admission.

What is the GMAT?
Graduate studies in business administration and other management programs require you to take the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT). This is an evaluation by which the college administration judges your potential ability to succeed in a grueling management course. GMAT is in English and assesses verbal, mathematical and analytical writing skills. It is not designed to score you on your knowledge about business or your skills in tackling your job requirements. GMAT will not test you on your course work, or your creative, motivational and interpersonal skills.

Preparing for the GMAT
In a standardized test such as GMAT, it is extremely important to be prepared to score high. You need at least four months of intensive preparation for a good score. Here are some tips that will help you to organize your preparation:

  1. A GMAT prep book will give you study tips, contents of the test, practice questions and practice papers that are modeled on the actual GMAT tests. So, getting a good prep book is a must.
  2. Set up a daily schedule to sit with the book. Take a practice test and evaluate yourself to know how much work needs to be done to increase your score.
  3. Start working on the practice questions in the book. Be very methodical and strict about your daily schedule.
  4. After about six weeks take another practice test to determine your progress. If the score does not make you happy, step up your preparations.
  5. There are GMAT prep courses that are available. Though costly, these courses are just the right thing to step up your preparations if you cannot manage on your own.
  6. When you feel you are ready take another practice test, simulate the GMAT exam conditions to get the feel of the real thing. If an honest evaluation reveals a high score that satisfies you, then sit for the exam. Else try it at a later date.

GMAT Resources
In this section, we give links to various resources that will help you prepare for the GMAT. The following link will give you information on GMAT prep books: BusinessMajors.com

For added information on GMAT resources, personal blogs and articles, go to the following sites:

GMATResource.com
BeattheGMAT.com
WiseGeek.com

GMAT Examination Explained
The GMAT exam consists of three main sections: Analytical Writing Assessment, Quantitative Section, and a Verbal Section. The Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) comprises two writing tasks, where you are required to analyze an issue and an argument. The time allotted for each section is 30 minutes.

After an optional 10-minute break, you will start with the Quantitative Section in which you will answer 37 multiple-choice questions. These questions are on Data Sufficiency and Problem Solving and have to be finished in 75 minutes.
 
The Verbal Section is the last one. It starts after a 10-minute break and there are 41 multiple choice questions. These questions are on Reading Comprehension, Critical Reasoning and Sentence Correction. This section will have to be completed in 75 minutes.
 
The multiple-choice questions for the Quantitative and Verbal sections are in a computer adapted format; for each multiple-choice section, there is a pool of questions with different levels of difficulty. The section starts with a question of moderate difficulty. If you answer a question correctly, you get a higher level question. On the other hand, if your answer is incorrect, you will get a lower level question.

The computer will present and score each question. You will not be able to skip, change, or return to a question. Do not try to guess, as your scores get significantly lowered with wrong answers. Attempt all questions, when required with an educated guess, as there is a penalty for incomplete sections.

Some More Important Facts about GMAT
GMAT is held round the year. You can take the GMAT as many times as you like; however, some business schools will average your score. Once you have finished your paper, the online system will offer you an option of accepting your test or canceling it. You have the option to cancel your test if you feel you have not done very well. Then your score will not be available either to you or to any school. If you accept, your scores will be available.

GMAT Registration
If you want to register online, login at this site: MBA.com

Colleges will have the form. You can also write to the following address to get your form:

Graduate Management Admission Test
Educational Testing Service
P. O. Box 6103
Princeton, NJ 08541

Be aware that getting a high score is not all that you have to do. It is very important to project an impeccable academic, professional and personal background. Admissions to business courses are much sought after. So, the seriousness of your intent is important.

 

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