Choosing A GMAT Test Date
Which GMAT Exam Date Should You Prefer?
A systematic and thorough preparation plays an important part in helping you achieve a high score in GMAT. In fact, the preparation for the test begins much before you begin to study. First and foremost, you need to plan when you can take the test. The GMAT is a Computer Adaptive Test that is carried out throughout the year in certain examination centers around the world. The onus of choosing the date is completely on you. There are few things that need to be kept in mind when deciding upon a test date.
- College Deadline:
The first thing to check should be the application deadline dates of the colleges you wish to apply to. While it may not be necessary to apply with the scores, it is always better to do so. Ideally, the date you choose should leave you with enough time in hand to include the scores as well. It takes almost 15 days for the results to reach you after the test has been taken.
- GMAT Retest:
In case, you are not satisfied with your scores and plan to retake the test, you will require extra time. The current rule is to wait for a period of 31 days or a month to be able to retake the test. Add another 15 days for the new test scores to reach you. The interval period of 31 days is mandated by the GMAC but you may want more time to prepare for a retest. Keeping the above scenario in mind, it is recommended to plan the future date with a wide margin before the application deadline.
- Test Centers:
The exam is conducted all over the world in some select centers round the year. These select centers are the permanent centers and are situated in almost all major cities of the world. Apart from the permanent centers, the examination is also conducted in other authorized centers. However, these centers may conduct the test on certain dates instead of whole year round. It is advisable to first select the exam center and check for a date best suitable to you. It is better to choose the center close to you as it would be convenient to reach and cut down on the stress of traveling on the day of the exam.
- Ample Preparation Time:
It is important not to hurry or rush into booking a test date. Achieving a high score in GMAT requires preparation and lots of practice. It is necessary to allow time for a thorough preparation before taking the test. Although, it is allowed to retake up to five times a year, it is not advisable to do so. For one, it does not show well on your application as the score sheet contains scores of all the tests taken in five years time. Secondly, there are some business schools that average the scores when considering your application. Hence, it is best to prepare well and then take the test. It should be planned in a manner that allows you plenty of time for a thorough preparation.
- Time of the Year:
There are some months of the year that see a heavy rush of bookings for the test. Usually the number of applicants is higher during the months of September to December. It is advisable to check for available test dates for these months at the center of your choice well in advance to avoid problems in booking your chosen date and time.