The GMAT Verbal section helps to determine a student’s ability to understand and analyze written material, and the student’s ability to recognize and conform to the conventional standard of written English. The Verbal section pertains of three diverse question categories:
- Sentence Correction
- Critical Reasoning – , i.e. testing the student’s ability to reason and evaluate arguments
- Reading Comprehension, i.e. test the students ability to read and understand standard written English
The entire Verbal section comprises of 41 multiple choice questions that needs to be answered with in the time limit of 75 minutes. The questions from all three categories are presented in a mixed format in this section. There is no fixed arrangement of questions from each category.
A Sentence Correction question in the Verbal section has a sentence that contains an underlined portion and five consecutive answers. The student is expected to first decide whether the underlined portion contains any grammatical or stylistic errors. Once he is able to establish that, he has to estimate which of the 5 choices would best suite to correct the inaccuracy of the statement provided. This question category determines the student’s ability to recognize and comprehend the stylistic conventions and grammatical rules of standard written English.
Critical Reasoning questions in the Verbal section test the student’s reasoning skills in presenting and assessing arguments, and devising or estimating a plan of action. Question topics are picked from varied sources and hence there is no need for students to focus on any specific issue. A short passage and a question with multiple choice answers are presented to the student. The student has to read the passage carefully and then move on to the question. Depending on the question put out to the student, he has to choose an answer that most strengthens, weakens or best explains and expresses the perspective that the paragraph establishes. This question category is helpful in determining the student’s ability to evaluate the logical force of an argument and to distinguish aspects appropriate to the validity of its conclusion. Testing the student’s ability to
the written information is the main motive behind this question category.
The student is presented with a passage of about 350 word followed by about three questions in the least. This section could have about four different passages with their respective number of questions. The passages with their set of questions are based on an assortment topics that deal from
- Social sciences
- Physical sciences
- Biological sciences
- Business-related areas (marketing, economics, human resource management, etc.)
Hence familiarity on diverse issues is helpful in dealing with these types of questions. The questions that follow the passage have to be answered based on what is being implied or affirmed in the passage. The questions could range from what is
- inferred from,
- interpreted from, and
to the passage. The student’s ability to read, absorb, and analyze written information is tested through Reading Comprehension questions in the Verbal section.