The GMAT® exam

by Thomas Graf

The following content is provided by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC):


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Once you’ve decided to study for a business master’s degree, the GMAT® exam is the logical next step. Designed by, and for, business schools, the GMAT exam is valued by more than 7,000 programmes, universities and employers around the world, and is the most widely used test for management and business school admissions.

Why the GMAT exam?

The GMAT exam tests a set of skills called higher order reasoning skills – applying what you know to analyse, evaluate, and synthesise information. The exam therefore tests how you think and is the most universally-recognised demonstration of your readiness for business school.

It’s also a proven predictor of your academic performance: the better you do on the GMAT, the better you should expect to do in your business master’s programme. For that reason, it’s the most trusted and accepted test for admission to business schools around the world. A good score shows you are serious about business school and will help you stand out.

What’s in the GMAT exam?

There are four different exam sections. Mastering each will help your performance in business school and beyond. Think of the GMAT exam as your first business school course.

  1. The Quantitative section measures data sufficiency and problem solving. These two question types allow you to demonstrate that you can recognise patterns, make decisions, think in a structured and organised manner, and are comfortable with basic statistics. These skills are particularly valued by employers and business schools.
  2. The Verbal section uses reading comprehension and critical reasoning to measure how quickly you can absorb unfamiliar material and identify flawed logic. Critical and logical thinking are essential in work and study success; the Verbal section will help you get there.
  3. Integrated Reasoning questions determine how well you analyse and synthesise information from charts, tables, and diagrams. The 2018 GMAC® Corporate Recruiter Survey found that companies struggle to find graduates that can evaluate information from multiple sources and then organise it to see relationships and solve complex problems - master these and you will be ahead of your peers.
  4. The Analytical Writing Assessment shows that you can present an argument in written form.

Practical information

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