The Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) is taken by aspirants who wish to pursue MBA or MS in Finance. It is one of the oldest tests for graduate admissions and is administered by the Graduate Management Admissions Council (GMAC), USA. The test is accepted by almost all the premier schools and a good score of about 750 out of the possible 800 will ensure that your application is considered seriously by Ivy League schools. However, a top score in GMAT does not ensure automatic admission, but a low score definitely takes you out of the consideration.
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GMAT is based on a few basic concepts in the Math and Verbal sections. It is the myriad application of these concepts that the test taker is actually tested upon. What is tested is your ability to think quickly, ability to complete a task within time as well as under pressure.
Guess intelligently: Since the Computer Adaptive Test (CAT) that GMAT follows adapts questions according to your ability to answer them, you must be very careful while answering the initial questions. So ensure that you answer them right. Since there is no negative marking, intelligent guessing would always get you a good score. Also learn to identify obvious wrong answers.
Manage time: Do ensure that you answer all the questions and complete each section within the stipulated time. If any section is incomplete, it affects your score by as much as 50 percent.
Good knowledge in a subject doesn't guarantee good score: In the Maths section, you are tested on various topics such as permutation and combination, probability, geometry and statistics. The questions test you on these basic concepts but are presented in the form of Problem Solving or Data Sufficiency questions. In verbal, the question types are: Sentence Corrections, Critical Reasoning and Reading Comprehension. If you are good in Math, it does not guarantee a good score in the Math section and the same goes for verbal. It is the scaling process that determines your final score. A uniform performance gives you a better score vis-à-vis flashes of brilliance, especially across different sections.
Answers sounding incorrect can be correct: Usually while solving sentence correction questions, students tend to judge the answer choices by how it sounds but the problem in GMAT is that the answer choices that sound the most incorrect, may turn out to be the right answers.
Consider information given in passage to answer Reading Comprehension questions: In Reading Comprehension, it is a myth the test taker needs to possess knowledge about various topics on which the passages are based. It is simply not feasible to know all the topics on which the passages are designed. Also, it’s advisable that even if the candidate happens to know about the topics, he should not apply his knowledge while answering the questions. Confine yourself solely to the information provided in the passage.
Eventually, it’s how you handle the pressure of taking such an enigmatic test that determines your score. Those who are confident about their approach and do not buckle under pressure are invariably the ones who do well in GMAT and may be in life as well
With inputs from Araddhana Mahanna, Managing Director, Manya Education, business partners of The Princeton Review (TPR) in India.