Structure Of The GMAT
Do You Know The Format of GMAT
The GMAT is an examination to be taken by all candidates aspiring for a degree in management from the top business schools of the world. A high score in the test is necessary to maximize the applicant's chances in securing a place in the management programs offered by the top business schools. Some business schools do not accept applications that do not have the prerequisite score. A high score can only be attained with a thorough preparation. In order to prepare well, it is imperative to understand the test structure.
- The Test Pattern:
The test is computer adaptive that adjusts to the candidate's skills as the test progresses. The test is comprised of questions of different levels of difficulty with the harder questions carrying more points. If you answer a question correctly, the next question comes from a pool of questions of greater difficulty. In case you answer a question incorrectly, the next question comes from a group of easier questions. There is no option to go back to a previous question or skip a question without answering it.
The exam comprises three sections – verbal section, quantitative section and analytical writing assessment section. The verbal and quantitative sections consist of multiple choice questions and each question carries a different score depending on its level of difficulty.
The quantitative section is a crucial section in the overall test and contains multiple choice questions on problem solving and data sufficiency. The score in the quantitative section ranges from 0 – 60 points. For questions on problem solving, knowledge of basic mathematics including algebra, geometry and probability that is mostly covered in high school is required. Data sufficiency problems are slightly uncommon as they are not specific to the section. In data sufficiency problems, you are not required to come to a correct solution of the problem but determine if the data provided is sufficient to solve the question. With some amount of practice, data sufficiency problems can be solved quite comfortably. There are 37 questions in the quantitative section that is required to be solved in 75 minutes. Of these, there are approximately 22 questions on basic problem solving and 15 on data sufficiency.
The verbal section contains multiple choice questions on critical reasoning, sentence correction and reading comprehension. The score in the verbal section ranges from 0 - 60 points. There are around three to four reading comprehension passages on natural science, business news related or social sciences with a total of approximately 14 questions based on them. Sentence correction checks for a candidate's basic usage of grammar. Critical reasoning tests your reasoning skills. In the verbal section, there is a total of 41 questions to be answered in 75 minutes. Of these, there are approximately 12 questions for critical reasoning, 14 for reading comprehension and 15 for sentence correction.
- Analytical Writing Assessment:
The analytical writing assessment consists of two essays and is scored between 0 - 6 points. One essay comprises of the analysis of an argument and the other essay comprises of the analysis of an issue. In order to score in this section it is best to follow a structure when writing the essays. There is a time limit of 30 minutes for each essay. The analytical writing assessment section helps to evaluate your writing and communicating skills. The score of the Analytical Writing Assessment section comes separately from the overall GMAT score. It is advisable to spend time in practicing to write the essays to score well in this section of the test as some business schools may refer to it during the interview.