GMAT is Graduate Management Admission Test owned by GMAC, which works closely with its two strategic partners- ACT Inc., responsible for the content development, and Pearson VUE, responsible for holding the exam at its test centers all around the world. The GMAT exam is a standardized test, delivered in English, that helps business schools assess the qualifications of applicants for advanced programs in business and management. A standardized test helps in objectively evaluating a candidate's application. Undergraduate performances are subjective to grading systems of the respective colleges which are not comparable. By having a good score in the GMAT test, you have a better chance of joining MBA programs of business schools that are a good match for you and learning more about their programs and admissions processes. Business schools use the GMAT test as one predictor of academic performance in an MBA program or in other graduate management programs. Only the GMAT has years of research to predict the performance of a student in the first year of the MBA. Business schools know that and rely on it, and that is why the GMAT is accepted by more than 4,700 MBA programs. Why the GMAT? Because it provides you a direct comparison with fellow applicants who are both interested and qualified and because the GMAT alone has demonstrated predictive ability of your performance.
The exam consists of three main parts:
Analytical Writing Assessment-
The sub sections covered under AWA are
a) Analysis of an Issue
b) Analysis of an Argument
This section checks cogent, well-articulated analysis of the complexities of the issue/argument, demonstration of mastery of the elements of effective writing, display of ideas, and well organized structure and effective use of English language. The topics can range from general to business related issues. You are given 30 minutes for each essay, and are marked on the scale of 0-6. You can read more about AWA HERE. It is possible to get half point scores as well, such as 3.5 or 5.5 etc.
Verbal section consists of three sections.
Reading Comprehension- The passages can be as long as 350 words and can cover a wide variety of topics ranging from psychology, business, arts, science etc. Drawing inference, understanding logical relationships, drawing conclusions are some of the common points that you could be tested upon.
Critical Reasoning- This section is used to test your ability to construct and evaluate arguments.
Sentence Correction- With five choices given for each question, this section tests your language proficiency. A correct sentence should be grammatically and structurally sound and an effective sentence should express an idea or relationship clearly and concisely. You would be tested on both. Verbal section has 41 questions, and 75 minutes are allotted for this section.
37 questions and 75 minutes are allotted for this section with two broad categories to be tested upon. Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, and understanding of geometrical concepts are tested through the Problem Solving section while the analysis and evaluation skills are tested through Data Sufficiency.
Verbal 41 questions 75 minutes
Quantitative 37 questions 75 minutes
Analytical Writing Assessment
Analysis of an Issue
Analysis of an Argument 30 minute each
GMAT does not measure your job skills, your knowledge about business or your knowledge about undergraduate subjects.
What is a Computer Adaptive Test?
A computer adaptive test means that you would take the test on computer, obviously, and the test would adapt itself to your level of difficulty. A correct answer would take you to the next level of difficulty, and a wrong answer would bring you down to the lower level of difficulty. Have a look at the following chart:
The vertical bar shows the level of difficulty of questions, and the horizontal bar shows the question number. The chart can be read in the following manner:
Say you start with Q0 of 0 difficulty level, if you get the question correct, you move on to Level of difficulty 1
Q-1 correct- move to Level 2
Q-2 correct- move to Level 3
Q 3 wrong- move down to Level 2
So on and so forth.
The total score of GMAT is reported on the scale of 200- 800, which means that you start with a minimum score of 200. Quite motivating, I must say. GMAT score is valid for five years; however it is advisable to take the GMAT again if the score is more than three years old.
How to register?
You can register for the test by logging on to MBA.com, checking seat availability, selecting test centre, and finally paying for the test by either of the following modes of payment:
1. Credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or JCB)