The Graduate Management Admission Test, or GMAT, is a vital part of the business school application process. The GMAT is a multiple-choice, computer-based and computer-adaptive standardized examination that is often required for admission to graduate business programs (MBA) globally.

The GMAT is developed and administered by test maker GMAC to provide business schools with common measures of applicants’ preparedness for graduate-level academic studies. Business school admission committees look at your GMAT score, along with work experience, academic record, and supporting materials, to assess your readiness for the rigors of programs such as an MBA or a Master’s in Finance.

A high score on the GMAT will have a direct, positive impact on your business school application. The GMAT exam 2018 onwards is a computer adaptive test and not a computer-based test, which means that the candidate gets one question at a time and depending on the accuracy of the previous answer, the difficulty level of the next question is ascertained.

What is on the GMAT?

The GMAT exam measures your command over basic arithmetic, algebra, geometry, multi-source data analysis, and grammar. More importantly, it measures your ability to analyze and evaluate written material, critical thinking, and problem-solving techniques. The GMAT is first and foremost a test of your critical thinking abilities. Knowing how to reason through and analyze information is the key to a great GMAT score.

Recent updates in GMAT

The Graduate Management Admission Council has shortened the GMAT exam by 30 minutes which is already implemented effective from 16 April 2018. The new exam will be of 3 hours and 30 minutes including test instructions and breaks. The Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative sections are shortened by 13 and 10 minutes respectively. However, Integrated Reasoning and Analytical Writing Assessment along with the Score Preview and the optional break time will remain the same. These changes do not have much of an impact on scoring in the shortened Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative sections as only the unscored items have been removed by the GMAC. GMAT has a feature that facilitates candidates with the flexibility to customize their GMAT experience by choosing the section order in which they feel most comfortable taking the exam.

GMAT 2019 Highlights

Exam Name

GMAT

GMAT full form Graduate Management Admission Test
Official Website  XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
 Also accepted for MS courses outside India and MBA courses in India
 Conducted by GMAC (Graduate Management Admission Council)
Mode of Exam Computer-based adaptive test
GMAT fee US $250
Score Range Min 200, Max 800
GMAT Contact XXXXXXXXXXX, 9 A.M. to 6 P.M. Indian Standard Time

Eligibility Criterion for GMAT

As such, there are no set eligibility criteria set by GMAC, for appearing for the GMAT exam. However, one should always meet the eligibility criteria set by the university/college one aspires to get into after giving the GMAT.

Age Criteria:

The candidate must have completed 18 years of age.

There is no upper age limit for the candidate.

If the candidate is between 13 to 17 years old, they should have permission in writing from their parents or legal guardian.

Required Qualification:

GMAC has so far not announced any official statement regarding qualification required to appear for GMAT.

Candidates who wish to enroll for an MBA program should possess a graduate degree in any discipline from a recognized university.

GMAT 2019 Registration

Registration for GMAT can be done throughout the year; however, it is always advisable that candidates should frame a strategy and timeline for preparation before registering themselves for the examination. The candidates can register with GMAT both online and offline. More than 2, 00,000 candidates appear for the exam every year.

How to Register for GMAT?

According to GMAC, you can register for the GMAT exam six months before the Graduate Management Admission Test date or latest by 24 hours before the GMAT exam date; however, the slots are barely available at the last moment. Therefore, it is suggested to book your preferred slot well before the planned exam date.

Ways to Register for GMAT:

1. Online

2. Phone

3. Postal mail

Steps to register for GMAT

1. Visit the official website of GMAC, https://www.mba.com/ and create an account.

2. Go to the ‘Exams’ tab and click on ‘Register now’ and you will be taken to the Profile page

3. Submit your personal details and create your GMAT profile

4. Check test date and test location

5. Pay a fee of US $250

How to Schedule GMAT Exam 2019?

To schedule a GMAT exam, the candidate needs to create an account first.

Go to ‘Schedule a GMAT Exam’.

Create a GMAT user account and enter details with the academic qualifications.

Once the account is created, the candidate can register, reschedule, or cancel the GMAT exam.

The candidates can register, reschedule, or cancel the exam through these modes:

Online: The candidates can directly register on the official website of GMAT.

  1. Through Phone: The candidates can schedule through phone by calling the GMAT Customer Service of their region. Candidates have to pay the US $10 surcharge for scheduling the exam by phone.

  2. Postal Mail: The candidates can also pay through cheque to schedule the GMAT exam.

  3. After completing the entire process, candidates need to pay a fee of US $250.

GMAT 2019 Fees

The application fee for GMAT 2019 is $250, which would roughly translate to Rs 17000 approximately. Additionally, if the applicants want to change the center or reschedule the test then they will be charged $50 more.

GMAT Cancellation Fee

If you cancel the exam more than seven days before the test date then you will be refunded US$80. Also, if you cancel within the seven days of the test date then you will not get any refund whatsoever. Moreover, the appointment for the test cannot be canceled within the 24 hours of the scheduled test and time.

GMAT Rescheduling Fee

If you reschedule the exam more than seven days before the test date, then you have to pay US$60.00 fee. Also, if you reschedule the exam within the 7 days of the test date you have to pay US$250.00 fee. Furthermore, the exam cannot be rescheduled within the 24 hours of the scheduled test date and time.

GMAT Scholarships

Scholarships and grants are generally given by B-schools to pursue a professional program like MBA. Moreover, scholarships can be need-based or merit-based; however, there are no set rules for awarding a scholarship. It depends on each school’s admission criterion, so, the candidate will need to check with the school itself for gaining a scholarship. Also, there are two types of scholarships, full scholarship, and partial scholarship. The full scholarship covers the entire cost of the program, whereas partial on the other hand covers only the part of the course fee.

GMAT Exam Dates

There are no fixed official GMAT dates; you can choose any date according to your convenience and availability. In case you need to retake the GMAT exam you can do so after 16 days. You can take or retake the GMAT exam after every 16 days. You can appear for the exam a maximum of five times a year. Ideally, you are recommended to register yourself two to three months before the exam date. If you register online or by phone, you can get yourself registered as late as 24 hours before the exam date. But it is safer to stick to early registration as you will then have a set schedule to prepare for the exam accordingly.

GMAT Pattern and Syllabus

The GMAT test pattern consists of mainly four sections which will assess the candidate’s’ abilities on various parameters. These are – Writing, Reasoning, Verbal and Quantitative skills. The GMAT exam will be conducted in a time span of 3 hours and 30 minutes. GMAT scores are given with an increment of 10 points for example 550, 560, 570 etc.

GMAT Paper Pattern

Section No. of Questions Question Type Duration
Analytical Writing Assessment 1 Topic Analysis of an Argument 30 minutes
Integrated Reasoning 12 questions Multi-Source Reasoning, Graphics Interpretation, Two-Part Analysis, Table Analysis 30 minutes
Quantitative 31 questions Data Sufficiency, Problem Solving 62 minutes
Verbal 36 questions Reading Comprehension, Critical Reasoning, Sentence Correction 65 minutes
Total Exam Duration     3 hours 7 minutes

GMAT Preparation Tips

To be able to study on your own effectively, you need a few good GMAT books and resources, along with study material, motivation, and self-discipline. On the other hand, if time is a constraint and you feel the need to avail of professional guidance to ensure the competitive edge in GMAT exam preparation, then joining a coaching center for GMAT in your location is the better option.

Strategy for preparing for GMAT

To maximize the score, candidates need to strategize appropriately. Before starting your preparation also decide what a good GMAT Score according to you is, and then prepare accordingly. Candidates can also go through the GMAT Sample Papers which will help them in preparing for the GMAT exam 2019. Also, The Princeton Review, Manhattan Prep, Kaplan books, Khan Academy, and Veritas also provide useful preparation material.

GMAT Question Paper

The GMAT Exam comprises of three sections, viz. Analytical Writing Assessment, Quantitative Section and the Verbal Section. Though the exam is divided into three parts, in each part, it is difficult to identify which category the question belongs to. They are generally a mix-and-match to test your ability to solve differentiated problems. The division of questions is as follows:

1. Analytical Writing Assessment: This is the first sections from where the question paper begins. It constitutes 2 written tests, one being Analysis of an Argument, and the other one being Analysis of an Issue. The time frame given to complete both the essays is 1 hour (30 minutes each).

10 minutes of break—Optional

2. Quantitative Section: It is the second section in the question paper and consists of 37 multiple choice questions. It covers 2 types of questions: Data Sufficiency and Problem Solving. The time allotted to solve this sectionis 75 minutes.

10 minutes of break—Optional

3. Verbal Section: This is the third and the last section in the question paper. Containing 41 multiple choice questions, this section encompasses the range of three types of questions: Sentence Correction, Critical Reasoning, and Reading Comprehension. All these questions need to be finished in the allotted time schedule of 75 minutes.

GMAT Test Centers

It is advisable to choose your test center once you are ready to attempt the exam in the coming 2-3 months as the booking needs to be done in advance. It is suggested that you choose your city nearest to you so that you do not have to travel much before the exam. Once the state/city is chosen you may check out the availability of date in your nearest test center.

Choose your coaching center anywhere across India.

GMAT Results 2019-20

The candidates can avail their GMAT result as soon as the exam is over. The candidates have an option of accepting it or rejecting it. In the case of accepting the result, the candidate and the institutes of choice can view the result; but if the candidate declines the result none of the parties will be able to view the result of GMAT. Once the exam is over, candidates can download the non-official GMAT result. The main GMAT result can be downloaded only after 20 working days from one’s individual account on the GMAT website.

Scoring and Results in GMAT

Here are the minimum and maximum score range of each section, along with a mean average – 

Section Score Range Mean Scores*

Analytical Writing Assessment

0-6

4.5

Integrated Reasoning

1-8

4

Verbal

0-60

27

Quantitative

0-60

38

Total

200-800

548

*Source – GMAC

How to access the GMAT Score Report?

  • Usually, candidates receive their scores within 20 days of taking their GMAT exam.

  • Candidates will receive a link on their registered Email ID from GMAC.

  • Follow the instructions in the Email and with the help of that link candidates can check their official GMAT Score Report.

Validity of GMAT Score

Candidates should note that GMAT scores are valid for a period of 5 years. Hence, candidates should check the application deadlines of various Universities and schedule their GMAT exam accordingly.

What is the Percentile Vs Marks assessment in GMAT?

The GMAT score includes percentile that compares your performance with other test takers. If you score in the 80th percentile, then you performed better than 80 percent of the aspirants. Scoring high percentile means you performed better than most of the candidates appeared for the exam. Similarly, scoring low percentile signify that you scored lower than most of the candidates.

How the GMAT Score is calculated?

Always remember, that the GMAT Total Score Report includes Verbal and Quantitative scores and does not include any other section into account.

The GMAT Score Report comprises of these elements:

  • Your Quantitative Score (0 – 60), with percentile

  • Your Verbal Score (0 – 60), with percentile

  • Your Total GMAT Score (200 – 800), with percentile

  • AWA Score (half-integers from 0 to 6), with percentile

  • Integrated Reasoning score (integer from 1 to 8)

The candidates receive almost the entire GMAT Score Report just after finishing the GMAT test except the AWA Score. Finally, the candidates receive the complete GMAT Score Report within 20 days of giving the test including the AWA Score.

Colleges Accepting GMAT Score

The GMAT aspirants can apply to more than 7000 programs at roughly 2300 business schools globally. Further, top business schools across the world like Harvard, INSEAD and Stanford accept the GMAT score of above 720. GMAT scores are one of the most important factors in the entire application process for admission to top B-schools across the globe. GMAT is accepted in more than 114 countries of the world. Apart from this, those who are targeting schools which also accept GRE Scores along with the GMAT Scores might as well need to know ‘GMAT to GRE Score Conversion’ to convert their scores.

Indian Colleges Accepting GMAT Score

Not only overseas, GMAT scores are also an essential component when it comes to admission to top MBA Business Schools in India. Students before applying to their preferred GMAT college/university within India as well as abroad are required to keep in mind rankings, placement reviews, courses and Q&A related to GMAT admission, score range/ cut-off and eligibility.

Common Facts about GMAT

  • Students are not allowed to appear for their GMAT exam more than 5 times in a 12-month rolling period.

  • Candidates can attempt the GMAT exam a maximum of 8 times in their lifetime.

  • The unique aspect about GMAT is that it does not have a set exam date. Students have the flexibility to choose from the many available GMAT exam dates to appear for the exam.