You’ve heard of it. You’ve thought of it. You knew it was coming. But now you’re really on track to take the GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) and you have no idea how to get started. No problem. The following are some tips to help you prepare for what’s coming next.
Nothing about the GMAT is easy. You’re going to find yourself attempting to learn a lot of different test-taking strategies and it’s not only important to understand the strategies but to know how and when to use each one – in a reasonable amount of time. Truth be told, weekend cramming isn’t likely to do you very much good as you prepare for this exam. Schedule some study time into your day – every single day – to keep things manageable. Make it a part of your schedule so you can’t back out or put other activities over top.
Take Some Practice Tests
Practice makes perfect. Find sample questions online and in study guides and use them to learn about the format and what is expected of you. Once you’ve mastered some of the aforementioned test-taking strategies you can start to take full, timed practice tests as well. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t do well the first time you do a practice exam. You’ll need to do several to improve your scores and times – and to learn what to expect.
You’ll Need to Take the GMAT More Than Once
Did you know your GMAT score lasts for 5 years? This means you can take the GMAT very early – while you’re still in school, if you want. If you get a great score (especially in math, for example, because you just finished the class), you can leave it be. But if you don’t do well you’ll have plenty of time to continue studying and take it again. School and work experience combined may still buy you enough time to not take the exam again if you did do well the first time.
Focus on Everything, Focus on Trouble Areas
That makes sense, right? What I’m saying is that math is important, so you should focus on it if you have trouble with math. But that doesn’t mean you can ignore the skills needed to master the verbal section of the test. The verbal section shows you can communicate, which is huge in the business world. If you do poorly on the verbal section because you spent all of your time studying statistics, you are going to have a lower overall result, and that may just hurt your chances of getting into the school you really want.
Look for support as you prepare for the GMAT. There’s no reason to prepare alone. Set timetables for study, work with groups, and take some prep classes. The more you prepare, the better you’ll feel as you face your future!