GMAT Exam 2019 – Tips On How To Prepare Before Exam

Graduate Management Admission Test, commonly known as GMAT, is one of the coveted entrance exams accepted across all B-Schools. This exam is conducted by GMAC (Graduate Management Admissions Council), and it is taken so as to earn an MBA or Masters in Management (MiM) degree from a leading business school in India or abroad.

To score 680 and above in the GMAT, one has to keep a smart approach towards solving the questions.  A high GPA can lead you to secure a seat in one of the top 10 business schools, about which all candidates dream of. Every year 200,000 + students take the GMAT exam across the globe, which makes the competition really tough for aspirants like you.

Cracking the GMAT isn’t hard if you follow a  well-planned study structure. Even working professionals, who want to take up the GMAT Exam, can dedicate 25 hours every week for 3-4 months and prepare on their own with the help of online tutorial videos, test papers and mocks, etc.. Since this is a computer adaptive test, approaching every question reasonably helps a candidate answer correctly, as there is no option to skip the question. In this article, we will learn how to prepare for the upcoming GMAT Exam 2020 and books which we can follow for each section.


To proceed ahead with the exam preparations make an effective study plan. Understand the basic structure of the GMAT, such as the sections, duration, number of questions for each section, scoring pattern etc. This will help you get a direction towards your preparations, rather than feeling lost in the vast syllabus.

GMAT Exam includes 4 sections: Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning. Each of these section requires individual attention and preparation, as every section has a separate scoring pattern.

  1. Quantitative Section: 31 Questions – 62 Minutes (previous 75 minutes)
  2. Verbal Section: 36 Questions – 65 minutes (previous 75 minutes)
  3. Integrated Reasoning Section: 12 Questions – 30 minutes
  4. Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA): 1 Topic – 30 minutes

GMAT Preparation Tips


As a beginner, if you think you need a professional coaching institute to manage your preparation then we recommend you to go ahead and get trained. Opting to take coaching classes is always a wise decision to make.  However, if you are the one who has great self-discipline, strategy and the right materials then, you can start preparing by yourself without any professional guidance.


One of the questions that most candidates ask is, how to prepare for the GMAT exam and when to start? We would say, the perfect approach to get ready for GMAT is five months prior to the business school application deadline. In this way, students get at least 3 months to prepare for the exam and send out the official score reports to MBA programs of their choice.


The best way to start preparing for GMAT Exam is by beginning to study the scheduled set of books and exam materials suggested by GMAC. Test takers should also refer to other sources such as articles, magazines, jour so that they can gain extra knowledge and score well in the exam.


The chances of getting high scores in the GMAT Entrance is not depended on the number of times a candidate practices a test exam since the questions from previous tests are never repeated. Hence, it is always suggested that you keep yourself updated and follow the latest exam syllabus available online.


Here are some general tips that every GMAT aspirant can follow:


  1. GMAT is a computer-based exam, hence, writing or highlighting important points in books may not be fruitful.
  2. It is always good to start your preparations early, as it would take several months to complete. For working professionals, it can be hard juggling other aspects such as personal and professional commitments along with GMAT preparation.
  3. Always set your foundations straight, understand and practice time-saving techniques. Quality of preparation matters during the GMAT. So, follow time-saving strategies to score well in the Verbal and AWA sections of the exam.
  4. Try giving your best in the first attempt to avoid having to reschedule the exam. However, if you are unhappy with the scores and have to stretch the GMAT exam, you may have to delay your B-school plans by a year.
  5. Keep an eye out for college deadlines.


Tips to study for the GMAT exam:


  1. Set a GMAT preparation timetable. Allocate enough time for every section and plan effectively.
  2. Try setting your target at least 50 points ahead to ensure that you safely reach your required score.
  3. Look out for the time. Set time milestone, because this is one of the parts where students might lag behind their schedule.
  4. Review and study one section of the test at a time.
  5. It is good to refer to other sources but, the official GMAC material is designed especially to meet study requirements for students of all categories – beginner, intermediate or advanced level.
  6. Start taking practice tests available at the official website of GMAT. This will help you to know your starting point in terms of GMAT score and further help you to set a targeted GMAT score.
  7. Avoid common errors, such as an excessive focus on grammar and avoiding AWA preparation until the last minute.
  8. It is best to follow a combination of classroom/ self-study for best results.


Books for GMAT Exam


  • GMAT Complete 2020: The Ultimate in Comprehensive Self-Study for GMAT (Kaplan Test Prep)
  • GMAT Official Guide 2020: Book + Online
  • Manhattan GMAT Set of 8 Strategy Guides
  • Kaplan GMAT 800: Advanced Prep for Advanced Students


Books for Quantitative Reasoning


★ GMAT Official Guide 2020 Quantitative Review: Book/Online

★ GMAT Advanced Quant: 250+ Practice Problems & Bonus Online Resources (Manhattan Prep GMAT Strategy Guides)


Books for Verbal Reasoning


★ GMAT Sentence Correction (Manhattan Prep GMAT Strategy Guides)

★ GMAT Verbal Review 2020 with Online Question Bank and Exclusive Video (Paperback)


These are a few of the books that can be followed for the exam. You can also search many other related books, online, by renowned authors to help you crack the GMAT exam.

Besides, try analysing your strengths and weaknesses through the practice test. This way, you will be able to figure out that what you strong topics/sections are and also which section you need to improve on. You can also monitor the amount of time you take to solve the question and also the type of questions you tend to struggle the most with.

Try spending more time working on sections that you feel are challenging for you and find a solution for them. Start working on your fundamental skills. Read newspapers, articles, etc to improve grammar in order to recognise sentence correction errors more quickly. Similarly, you might need to review the fundamental math skills such as probability, algebraic equations or statistics.

The GMAT prep plans should basically focus on filling the knowledge gap, especially in sections where candidates feel they lag behind. Syllabus related books and interactive study material such as maths quiz books, guide books etc. not only help students gain extra knowledge but also in building the underlying skills that are important to answer the questions. You should be well-prepared to tackle any type of question that is thrown at you, rather than taking it as a surprise.

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