The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a business school entrance exam. This exam is a crucial part of the application and admission process for upper-level, leading graduate business schools. The GMAT is administered by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), leading graduate schools. It helps determine which candidates are the most appropriate for graduate business schools on a global scale. The GMAT exam is one of the most popular MBA entrance exams worldwide. It has various criteria and parameters, making it one of the most challenging and difficult MBA entrance exams.
Proper and extensive preparation is the most effective way for candidates to prepare themselves for taking the GMAT test. The most prestigious and competitive MBA programs have average accepted-students’ scores in the range of 710, which is in the 90th percentile and higher. To be one of the top candidates, test-takers should aim to score as high as possible on the GMAT. So, what is the most effective way that candidates can prepare themselves for this exam? The answer is the Official Guide for GMAT Review.
The GMAT Official Guide 2021 – Our Review
The GMAT Official Guide helps candidates review previously held information and learn new concepts. This book is actually a set of three books, including the GMAT Official Guide book and two smaller books. One of the smaller books zeroes in on the verbal reasoning section with practice sets, and the other focuses on the quantitative reasoning section. Each Official Guide for GMAT review contains content that the student needs to prep for the test.
The GMAT Official Guide contains a comprehensive, step-by-step preparation collection. The Guide for GMAT Review explains concepts so that candidates can develop a mastery of the key areas. There are over 1,850 GMAT Official Guide questions from past GMAT exams, new questions, and an online question bank. It also includes three books—the Official Guide for GMAT, Quantitative Review, and Verbal Review, 150+ additional questions, practice questions, online flashcards featuring key concepts, a mobile app to practice questions on the go (both online access and offline access), and specific, detailed, guidance through all features of the GMAT exam. The GMAT Official Guide has online access that makes studying even more convenient.
Candidates can use the GMAT Official Guide book to gauge their performance in each GMAT exam section. By utilizing the free GMAT Official Guide and working through each section, test-takers can see where their testing weaknesses are and be better able to focus on them and work through the difficulties. Candidates can then create custom-made practice sets, which can increase in difficulty as improvement is noted.
After working through and studying the guided prep in each one of the three GMAT Official Guide books, candidates can take Official Practice Questions and use the online question bank to test their readiness for taking the real GMAT exam. By providing these questions in the GMAT Official Guide, candidates can gradually progress to full mastery of the differing types of questions present on the exam. All of the resources provide candidates with an efficient learning experience.
How is the GMAT Exam Designed?
The GMAT is a computer-based, multiple-choice exam that is computer-adaptive as well. The exam evenly measures candidates’ readiness and ability to thrive in a graduate-level business school setting. The Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) helps to assess business schools’ relevant skills. The graduate admission committees at graduate business schools pore over GMAT score reports when choosing their programs. Academic records, applicable and related work experience, and other submitted materials are all considered, but GMAT results are a high priority. According to the Graduate Management Admission Council, high GMAT scores positively influence candidates’ applications to business schools.
What Can Be Expected on the GMAT?
The GMAT business school entrance exam is a test that is almost 3 ½ hours in length. The Official GMAT guide is the free premier guide for GMAT. The exam contains new questions in an online question bank in the following areas:
Verbal Reasoning Section
This GMAT verbal review section tests the candidate’s editing abilities, reading comprehension, and analytical thinking when reading through written arguments. This verbal review section consists of reading comprehension questions, sentence correction questions, and critical reasoning questions. Reading skills will be tested by verbal review and include the following: the main idea, supporting ideas and information, applying the main idea, style, and whether the structure is logical. The GMAT review guide contains a guide for GMAT verbal review that is effective. There are 36 questions total in this guide section.
Integrated Reasoning Section
This integrated section of the GMAT Official Guide explores how well students can comprehend, interpret, and analyze information presented in various formats. The GMAT review section guide contains two-part analysis questions, table analysis questions, graphics interpretations, questions, and multi-source reasoning questions. The Official Guide for GMAT has 12 integrated reasoning questions, with some questions containing multiple parts.
Analytical Writing Assessment
Communication skills and critical thinking are examined in the Official Guide for GMAT Review. This section’s assessment, administered by the Graduate Management Admission Council, helps business schools analyze a candidate’s writing skills. The test-taker will pinpoint and then analyze flaws in an argument, give a clear, organized response, use examples and evidence to support an argument, and show that he or she has full command of the English language—in writing, language, syntax, diction and all standard English conventions.
When the test-taker submits an essay, GMAT scores the candidate’s essay on the following four categories:
- the essay offers an overall analysis of the issue
- gives supporting ideas
- is organized coherently and cohesively
- and the candidate’s control of the language and its standard conventions.
Quantitative reasoning section
The quantitative review section in the GMAT Official Guide determines whether students have a strong grasp on number recognition and numerical literacy and tests whether or not the candidate possesses strong mathematical skills. It consists of quantitative review, problem-solving questions, and data sufficiency questions. The quantitative review section covers candidates’ knowledge of algebra, arithmetic, word problems, and geometry. There are 31 questions in the quantitative reasoning section of the GMAT Official Guide.
The Order of the Sections
Candidates may choose to take the exam sections in any order. The GMAT exam measures overall knowledge and the reasoning skills necessary to use that knowledge and apply it daily while working in a business setting.
The computer-adaptive test adapts and changes along with the test taker’s performance while he or she is taking the test. It issues questions to the candidate based on incorrect and correct answers. It calculates the test taker’s score and ability level based on both the incorrect and correct answers and the difficulty levels of the candidate’s answers. The test-taker must carefully pace themselves during test time to ensure that they do not spend too much time or too little time on each question.
Difficult, but Doable
Although a perfect GMAT score is 800, only about 30 individuals a year achieve this score out of approximately 200,000 test-takers worldwide each year. This is a combined score of both quantitative and verbal scores. This number of perfect scores has been consistent for the past several years. However, candidates can aim to score as high as possible with proper preparation and practice. The GMAT Official Guide can help with this.
Is a high or perfect score highly sought after or required to get into an excellent business school MBA program?
Quality MBA programs look for applicants who score as high as possible, some even searching for candidates in the 90th and higher percentile. The official GMAT exam and GMAT questions are hard. At the bare minimum, test-takers will be taking the exam for a little over four hours. A full night’s sleep is essential in the weeks leading up to the examination. Some simple stretches during testing may help. Stretch your arms over your head and rotate your neck side-to-side. Stand at your testing area and use your hands to reach your hands down to your toes as far as you can. This gets the circulation going, which in turn energizes the brain.
What are some of the common mistakes that candidates make?
- Not allowing enough time to study the GMAT Official Guide-daily, weekly, monthly, and the frequency of study.
- Choosing the incorrect study material and guidance to study for the exam effectively.
- Getting lost in the details instead of focusing on the overall concepts.
- Not recognizing the difficulty of the GMAT questions.
- Not taking enough practice exams–with verbal review as well as quantitative review.
With discipline, planning, practice, and preparation using the GMAT Official Guide, an excellent result on the GMAT is attainable. It will challenge you mentally and physically and stretch you to your limits. You may feel stressed or pressured. Don’t. Review the online question bank, put full effort in, and it will be well worth it in the end. The GMAT Official Guide will help candidates review effectively by giving valuable practice questions, quantitative review questions, GMAT prep questions, resources, and online practice with answer explanations.