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The challenges of GMAT, how tough it can get

Posted on April 27, 2020
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A lot of us must have heard that GMAT is a test needed to study abroad doing a degree or post-graduate studies. There’s more than just that simple explanation of what GMAT is. Understanding GMAT and its test specifications can help you prepare better for it. It will also definitely help you get the answer to the question “just how hard is it to crack GMAT?!”.

GMAT score is just one of the criteria that qualify you to study overseas. It’s a computer adaptive test which is needed to enroll in graduate business programs in foreign universities. MBA is the most popular example of such a course.

When you attempt to join a foreign university, they make sure you have the expected level of language and thinking abilities. The GMAT test measures your abilities like critical thinking, quantitative abilities, reading, and writing. To achieve this, the test is divided into 4 sections namely:

  • Verbal Reasoning (36 questions, 65 minutes) – Critical reasoning, reading comprehension, the sentence correction
  • Integrated Reasoning (12 questions, 30 minutes) – Multi-source reasoning, table analysis, graphics interpretation, two-part analysis
  • Analytical Writing Assessment (1 question, 30 minutes) – Argument analysis
  • Quantitative Reasoning (31 questions, 62 minutes) – Problem-solving, Data sufficiency

In the total time of 3.5 hours, you can choose the sequence in which the sections are attended to. During the test, you will be allowed 2 optional breaks lasting 8 minutes max.

Do you know that GMAT is a computer adaptive test? It means that the difficulty level of the questions will be decided dynamically as per your performance. The test starts with a medium level difficulty in answering questions. If you keep on answering the questions correctly, you will keep getting tougher questions. If you falter in answering questions correctly, the system begins to give you easier questions. This way, the scores will be more representative of your actual level of skills and knowledge.

If you want to study abroad joining MBA programs and business studies, GMAT is essential for you to attend. The fee for registering for the exam is $250. Skills in integrated and quantitative reasoning, analytical writing, and verbal reasoning are needed to ace GMAT. These are after all the skills that you will apply once you join the course aimed for.

The GMAT result is presented as a report with scores in the above said 4 sections and the total score. A percentile rank will also be given that shows how you performed in comparison with other candidates.

So, how does one say how hard scoring in GMAT is? Looking at the trend, you will learn that only 27% of test-takers score above 650. Only 12% score above 700. The average score on GMAT is 561 (out of 800).

Let’s see what could make it hard for you to attempt GMAT.

  • The exam goes on for 3.5 hours and tests your stamina to sit through it
  • You will need to answer as many questions under the restricted time period
  • You have to give correct answers as much as possible as wrong answers create a negative impact on your score
  • Questions in unusual formats can be very challenging for you
  • The language section of the test could be very challenging especially for non-native English speakers
  • You can’t use a calculator for the quantitative section of the test

All this makes your preparation for GMAT extremely important. Join GMAT coaching and do as many practice papers as you can. We at Y-Axis can give you an abundant resource of GMAT preparation materials and tips and guidance from experts. Such training can get you focused, smart, and confident in cracking the GMAT test.

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