How to Score 700+ in the GMAT
The GMAT score is an indispensable requisite for the full-time Graduate Management programs in several universities. In the entire application process, as compared to other admission criteria such as recommendation letters, essays and even interview prep, candidates spend more than 75% of their effort and time in ensuring that they secure a high GMAT score as a way of enhancing selection chances into renowned business schools.
Top-notch B-schools require an average GMAT score of above 680. Thus ensuring a GMAT score of above 700 will be the perfect catalyst for increasing your chances of being selected into renowned graduate management programs.
Also bear in mind that the final outcome of your application depends on your demonstrated proficiency in interview, and determinants like, Essays, LOR, Academic GPA, SOP etc.
A 700+ GMAT score is a potential indicator of an outstanding academic proficiency of the candidate, which will help to isolate him/her from an immense pool of applicants.
With an increase in global competitiveness, there is a pressing need for an applicant to submit applications that are not just good, but must also ensure that they stand out from the crowd, especially considering the number of bright minds that are in the competition pool.
In most situations, top-B Schools have very low admission rates of 10%-15% , with some schools like Harvard having rates as low as 5%.
Not only are the odds steep, but so is the competition. Hence, getting a high score in GMAT will not only help your application shine, but also will help in covering up any weaknesses in the profile such as a low academic score
So What Is The Most Effective Way To Prepare For GMAT?
The GMAT is not as scary as it may seem. All you need is efficient study methods, and the GMAT will be a cake walk!
Here are a few ground rules before you start off your prep:
i. The only prerequisite that you need to put in is to not procrastinate. No matter how tiring your day was, make a promise to yourself that you will complete all the tasks related to GMAT for that particular day.
ii. Next, understand the GMAT exam format and pattern. This is very important as it will help you have a clear grasp of the competitive spirit of the exam.
iii. Performing well on the GMAT primarily depends on time and preparation. The more time you devote to studying, and taking practice exams, the more comfortable you will be on exam day.
Now that you know some of the ground rules, let's look at some statistics related to the GMAT.
A total of 261,248 GMAT exams were taken by prospective business school students around the globe in the testing year 2016, which ran from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016. These students sent a total of 561,866 score reports to graduate-level management programs across the world.
The current average GMAT score is a 551.94. Keep in mind that this mean score is quite low, and that the top 10 business schools, like Stanford, Harvard, and Yale, have an average GMAT score of 725—which is in the 95th percentile.
Hence, to increase your chances of scoring better, take up as many Mock Tests as possible.
Why take the GMAT Mock Tests? Mock tests are very necessary for your success at the GMAT as they indicate your performance levels. Also, try to simulate the testing conditions while taking your mock test, i.e. keep your phone aside and take up the test with the stipulated time limits.
What Should Be The Time Span Between Two Consecutive Mock Tests?
Start practicing quant and verbal questions simultaneously. Do as many questions as possible and give mocks in quick succession after this (say 1 mock in a gap of 2-3 days).
This will allow you to get used to the actual test environment and at the same time give you adequate opportunity to review your mistakes and work on them.
How Do The Mock Tests Help?
These tests enables detailed evaluation of your skills, and help to eliminate errors thereby enhancing your understanding of the basics. After each test, allocate at least 1 hour in understanding the answer explanations and find out where exactly you went wrong.
Also, online practice tests are timed and follow same pattern like the final GMAT. It is an indispensable framework that increases your chances of being admitted into top Business Schools.
Hence, take your GMAT online mock tests very seriously. It is a 4-hours long test module designed to give you simulation of the real test which will help you to practice well for the day of real exam.
Allocate time to take at least 5 complete practice online tests, to enhance your performance at the real GMAT. Ensure to take your final practice test, a week before Test Day.
Some useful websites for GMAT preparation and practice tests are:
Next up are some tips and hacks for securing an excellent score in the individual sections of the GMAT.
GMAT Essay tips
- Be Decisive
Read through carefully, make an analysis, reason out and take your stand. Don’t be diplomatic or ambivalent about your position. Take a side.
You should be in a position to stick to your opinion or argument till the end and write substantial content on the same.
- Definite Essay Structure
Try to have some clarity about how your essay would develop. Let the intro explain your stand (point of view). This would be followed by the body which can be around three paragraphs long. Each paragraph must address a different point and elaborate on the same by giving relevant examples.
Your conclusion should sum up your viewpoints. Don’t have a conclusion which repeats the introduction; instead, make your essay appealing by presenting a summary of your thoughts to sustain the reader’s interest till the end.
- Don’t lose focus
There’s no right or wrong answer in this section. It’s your independent opinion. Be confident so that you are in a position to defend and support that stand.
If you’re able to justify your point of view convincingly, then you’ve done a good job.
- Provide examples
Examples can be effective in conveying the message to the reader, so support your essay with examples wherever possible. They can act as evidence to give credibility to an otherwise theoretical stand.
Examples need not be only from your personal or professional life. They could also be from other sources, related to past or current events.
- Avoid grammatical / spelling errors
Polish your grammar for perfect language flow without errors. Ensure you proofread your write-up perfectly so as to make a coherent essay.
Make sure you practice very often. Practice writing a number of essays to enhance perfection.
Sentence Correction tips
- Read sentences with the aim of deducing logical meanings or on idioms to correct sentences. Make sure the sentence is modifying the correct subject.
- When describing things or events in the past, your verbs better agree when they are also describing things in the past.
- You should ensure to practice diverse examples
Critical Reasoning tips
1. Focus on the specifics of the argument and ignore any answer choices that don’t directly address the linear logic of the argument.
- Go through some solved examples and read up on the basic rules as this will give you a basic idea.
- Practice as many questions as possible and understand from your mistakes (Official Guides are good for this purpose)
Once you start getting a hang of the basic concept of each argument you will be able to answer the questions fairly accurately.
Reading Comprehension Tips:
- Relax and avoid any form of tension and anxiety. Having a calm mind increases your chances to think clearly and hence arrive a the right answers.
- Go through a number of passages and understand the basic trend. This is will make you to analyse easier and in a faster way.
- Take about 4 minutes to read the passage carefully. When this is done, it becomes quicker to answer the questions about the passage.
- When reading a passage, always search for the main theme. Don't worry as the main theme is easy to find. It is usually at the beginning of the passage or towards the end.Take note of the main idea in each paragraph of the passage. This will aid you in comprehending the answers to questions.
- As you read through the passage, try to understand the author’s tone in the passage. Is the author for or against the main idea of the passage. This would help you answer the "primary purpose" questions easily.
- Try to identify any specific examples used by the author to justify his claims.
Problem Solving tips:
- Make sure you check the answer choices before you start to provide solutions to a problem.
- Avoid trying to read the question before looking at the answer choices.Usually the answer choices give clues to the needed solution and can also provide shortcut that would save time.
For example: If u are faced with a geometry problem and you observe roots of 2 and 3 etc in the answer choices, you should understand the question is about an isosceles/30-60-90 triangle property or some kind of circle property. It makes the solution easier and faster.
- Use your scrap paper for every question.
- Use the answer choices to test if they are the correct answer.This is called back-solving. Practice it often.
For example, what is x if 2x=8. An answer of three will definitely be wrong after solving the question. Looking at the question directly , and inputting 4 in place of x will give 8.
Distinguishing Preparation Overview
Learning the underlying GMAT principles isn't just a matter of making some flashcards, and reading through an algebra book.
It entails lots and lots of practice. Practice recognising question types, setting up equations, isolating variables, plotting graphs on the coordinate plane...the list goes on.
Tarang Gupta, a final year BBS student from Delhi University followed appropriate study tips in his GMAT preparation and finally emerged with a 780 Score!.
That seems like tough, but you can achieve such a score by diligently applying the study tips in this write-up.
Here is what Tarang did:
Tarang ensured he mastered the basics of the exam. He made sure he understood the basic structure of the GMAT; the sections, the duration, the number of questions, the scoring mechanism etc. That should be your primary aim.
Tarang studied 5 days a week, which helped him to enhance his score better than if he had studied two or three days within the same period. You need to design a suitable reading pace for the exam.
Studying 2 hours everyday for 5 days in a week, will be a perfect plan for a candidate who wants to ace the GMAT.
Also target the section of the GMAT you wish to improve in, and focus more on it. Tarang focused more on the reading comprehension, and critical reasoning sections which are sometimes hard to crack if not properly understood.
Make use of quick reference schemes such as flashcards and phone apps. Expand your mental endurance.
Constant practising of questions, and reviewing your mistakes will help you attain a high GMAT score of above 700. The more consistent you are with your practice, the higher your score will be.
Be conscious of your study plan, put in the sufficient time, focus and energy. All this would make the GMAT exam an easy ride for you.
Also, the candidate is required to choose a section order at the test centre. The Select Section Order screen will be presented on the computer after you select the schools to send your score report, after the navigation tutorial, and immediately before commencing your GMAT exam.
You are advised to decide your order well in advance before the actual selection.The order choice will depend on the relative proficiency of the candidate in various sections.
Face the GMAT with vigour, resilience and submerge all your fears!