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Average GMAT score:What does it say? What does it not say?

Average GMAT score:What does it say? What does it not say?

While your GMAT preparation is underway, it is natural for you to want to know how your preparation compares with that of others. According to figures published by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), the owner of the GMAT exam, the average GMAT score between January 2015 and December 2018 is 563.43..

Gaining an understanding of your average GMAT score and how it stands in relation to the average scores attained by other test takers is a crucial step in understanding your chances of bagging an opportunity to attend your dream MBA program.

Average GMAT score for test takers

The table below provides the section-wise, average GMAT score for test takers, globally, between 2015-2018.

Section Average GMAT Score
Verbal 27.08
Quantitative 40.2
Integrated Reasoning 4.41
Analytical Writing Assessment 4.49
Average GMAT score 563.43


What is the Average GMAT Score?

The GMAT has four components and each section is scored in the range mentioned below:

  1. Verbal – scored between: 0 – 51
  2. Quantitative – scored between: 0 – 51
  3. Integrated Reasoning (IR): 1 – 8
  4. Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA): 0 – 6

The GMAT total score accounts for the Verbal and Quantitative sections of the test and ranges from 200 – 800. While the AWA and IR sections are scored, they do not contribute to one’s total GMAT score out of 800.The average score of 563.43 does not appear to be a very high one and the odds that you will make it to your dream school with this score are very low. To understand where you stand with regard to the average GMAT score, you could take our free GMAT practicetest. More than 500 students have confirmed sync between their GMAT scores and the scores they attained in our practice tests; thus, you will have a fair idea with regard to your preparation level.

Commonly speaking,a GMAT 740+ is considered a very fine score;if your GMAT score is in the 700+ range, it is considered a strong score; however,a score below the 600 mark is considered a poor one. There are, however, schools that are open to scores below GMAT 600, as well. The MBA programs open to low GMAT score are either those that find themselves at the base of global rankings or offer part-time, weekend, online MBA programs primarily aimed at working professionals.

What is the Average GMAT score at top business schools?

There is a simplistic tenet, which rules MBA admissions – the higher ranked a program, the tougher it is to gain admission to the same. The average GMAT score of the top business schools around the worldreflects this principle.

The GMAT is considered as one of the most important criteria in judging a student’s ability to adjust to the demands of challenging business school curriculum. The modules taught at business school can be difficult and it is essentialthat students have at least a basic grasp over certain verbal, quantitative, and analytic skills in order to gain from the program and their peers. Thus, higher ranked MBA programs tend to accept students with higher GMAT scores, and, as a result, have higher average GMAT scores for MBAas compared to mid-ranked or low-ranked business schools. Quite obviously, therefore, a higher GMAT score helps improve students’ chances of getting accepted by their dream school.

One of the most frequent questions asked by the test takeris: “What GMAT score do I need to get into my target program?”.

The answer to the above question lies in understanding the average GMAT scores of one’s target schools. The average GMAT score of your target MBA program will help you understand the GMAT score you should aim for; alternatively, if you already have a GMAT score, the average GMAT score will tell you if your GMAT score is at par with the requirements of your target school or whether you need to attempt the GMAT again to achieve a higher score. Students are encouraged to take GMAT practice tests to gauge their preparation levels before scheduling the GMAT.

Every business school shares information pertaining to the average GMAT score of its incoming class on its website. However, this information is dynamic in nature for a school may change its GMAT requirements from year to year. If the information is not readily available on the website of the school in question, you could always find the same on GMAT Club or by subscribing to US News & World Report.

Average GMAT scoresfor MBA for US top 75 MBA programs

School Average GMAT Score
University of Pennsylvania (Wharton) 732
Stanford University 732
Harvard University 731
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Sloan) 728
University of Chicago (Booth) 731
Columbia University 736
Northwestern University (Kellogg) 732
University of California–Berkeley (Haas) 726
Yale University 724
Duke University (Fuqua) 704
University of Michigan–Ann Arbor (Ross) 720
Dartmouth College (Tuck) 722
New York University (Stern) 716
University of Virginia (Darden) 718
Cornell University (Johnson) 699
University of California–Los Angeles (Anderson) 716
Carnegie Mellon University (Tepper) 690
University of Southern California (Marshall) 705
University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill (Kenan-Flagler) 702
University of Texas–Austin (McCombs) 702
Emory University (Goizueta) 686
Indiana University (Kelley) 675
University of Washington (Foster) 696
Georgetown University (McDonough) 693
University of Florida (Warrington) 685
Rice University (Jones) 706
University of Notre Dame (Mendoza) 671
Washington University in St. Louis (Olin) 693
Georgia Institute of Technology (Scheller) 681
Vanderbilt University (Owen) 678
Ohio State University (Fisher) 676
Brigham Young University (Marriott) 672
Arizona State University (W.P. Carey) 694
Pennsylvania State University–University Park (Smeal) 657
University of Minnesota–Twin Cities (Carlson) 682
University of Wisconsin–Madison 670
University of Georgia (Terry) 665
Michigan State University (Broad) 668
University of Texas–Dallas 671
Texas A&M University–College Station (Mays) 643
University of Maryland–College Park (Smith) 638
University of Rochester (Simon) 666
Boston College (Carroll) 637
Southern Methodist University (Cox) 655
University of California–Irvine (Merage) 667
University of Pittsburgh (Katz) 621
Iowa State University 607
University of California–Davis 671
University of Illinois–Urbana-Champaign 666
Boston University (Questrom) 681
University of Alabama (Manderson) 650
CUNY Bernard M. Baruch College (Zicklin) 637
University of Arizona (Eller) 665
College of William and Mary (Mason) 618
University of Tennessee–Knoxville (Haslam) 655
University of Utah (Eccles) 659
Baylor University (Hankamer) 607
Northeastern University 627
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey–Newark and New Brunswick 683
University of Oklahoma (Price) 625
George Washington University 611
Texas Christian University (Neeley) 631
Babson College (Olin) 615
Fordham University (Gabelli) 656
Tulane University (Freeman) 646
University at Buffalo–SUNY 592
Howard University 485
University of Kentucky (Gatton) 591
Auburn University (Harbert) 586
Louisiana State University–Baton Rouge (Ourso) 601
University of California–San Diego (Rady) 656
University of Missouri (Trulaske) 606
Oklahoma State University (Spears) 521
Case Western Reserve University (Weatherhead) 623
Pepperdine University (Graziadio) 633

Average GMAT scores for MBA for top European MBA programs

School Name Average GMAT Score
INSEAD (France) 700
London Business School (UK) 707
IMD (Switzerland) 670
Judge Business School, University of Cambridge (UK) 696
Said Business School, University of Oxford (UK) 690
HEC (Paris, France) 690
Imperial (UK) 642
Warwick (UK) 660
Manchester (UK) 650
Cranfield (UK) 640
Cass, City University (UK) 653
Lancaster (UK) 600
IESE (Spain) 690
IE (Spain) 670
ESADE (Spain) 660
SDA Bocconi (Italy) 650+
Rotterdam (Netherlands) 650
St Gallen (Switzerland) 723
Streathclyde (UK) 590
Tias Nimbus (Netherlands) 620
Manheim (Germany) 675
Dublin: Smurfit (Ireland) 640
Vlerick (Belgium 600+
Bath (UK) 600+
Birmingham (UK) 573
Durham(UK) 600
Lisbon (Portugal) 645

Average GMAT scores for MBA for top Canadian MBA programs

School Name Average GMAT Score
University of Toronto: Rotman School of Business 673
Schulich School of Business, York University 660
University of Western Ontario: Richard Ivey School of Business 667
University of British Columbia: Sauder School of Business 646
Queen’s School of Business 650
McGill University: Desautels School of Business 650
HEC Montreal 625
Alberta School of Business, University of Alberta 630
John Molson School of Business, Concordia University 648
Gustavson School of Business, University of Victoria 589
Telfer School of Business, University of Ottawa 612
Haskayne School of Business, University of Calgary 635
Beedie School of Business, Simon Fraser University 615
Sobey School of Business, Saint Mary’s University 590
DeGroote School of Business, McMaster University 627
Goodman School of Business, Borock Unoversity 610
Shannon School of Business, Cape Breton 580
Sprott School of Business, Carleton University (Ottawa) 600
Vancouver Island University 560
Rowe School of Business, Dalhousie University 550
Asper School of Business, University of Manitoba 590
Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson University 628
Memorial University MBA 590
Edwards School of Business, University of Saskatoon 570
Lazaridis School of Business and Economics, Wilfrid Laurier University 550
University of New Brunswick 550
Odette School of Business, University of Windsor 580

Average GMAT scores for MBA for top Asian MBA programs

School Name Average GMAT Score
INSEAD (Singapore) 708
IIM-A: Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad 720
ISB: Indian School of Business- Hyderabad and Mohali 709
IIM-B: Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore 709
NUS: National University Singapore (Singapore) 662
Nanyang Business School (Singapore) 720
IIM- C: Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta (India) 685
IIM-L: Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow (India) 680
XLRI, Jamshedpur (India) 700
HKUST (China) 680
CEIBS (China) 686
University of Hong Kong (China) 670
CUHK (China) 625
SP Jain, Mumbai (India) 680
IIM-I: Indian Institute of Management, Indore (India) [EPGP] 650
Lee Kong Chian, Singapore Management University 660
BiMBA: Peking University (China) 670
Fudan University (China) 650
Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business (China) 670
Great Lakes, Chennai (India) 680
Shanghai: Antai (China) 600
Tsinghua University (China) 658
Sungkyunkwan University GSB (South Korea) 550
AIM: Asian Institute of Management, Manila (Philippines) 652
Waseda University (Japan) 625
Graduate School of International Management, International University of Japan (Japan) 550
Graduate School of Business, Seoul National University (South Korea) 650

Average GMAT scores for MBA for top Indian MBA programs

School Name Average GMAT Score
IIM-A: Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (PGPX) 720
ISB: Indian School of Business- Hyderabad and Mohali (PGP) 709
IIM-B: Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore (EPGP) 709
IIM- C: Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta (PGPEX) 685
XLRI, Jamshedpur (GMP) 700
SP Jain, Mumbai (PGPM) 680
IIM-I: Indian Institute of Management, Indore (EPGP) 650
IIM-L: Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow (IPMX) 680
Great Lakes 680

Average GMAT scores for MBA for top Australian MBA programs

School Name Average GMAT Score
Melbourne Business School, the University of Melbourne 687
AGSM: Australian Graduate School of Management 550
Macquarie Graduate School of Management, Macquarie University 680
La Trobe Business School, La Trobe University 650
University of New South Wales 660
College of Business and Economics, Australian National University ANU 600+
Monash Business School, Monash University 650
UWA Business School, University of Western Australia 630
Queensland University of Technology Graduate School of Business 550
Graduate School of Business and Law, RMIT University 550
The University of Adelaide 590
Sydney Business School, University of Wollongong 650

Average GMAT score by geography.

One may probably wonder which country in the world has the highest average GMAT score, and, therefore, produces the smartest people. While the question, in itself, is interesting, the average GMAT score by geography will not help us answer this question. Only a handful of the population in every geography take the GMAT and this number varies from region to the region depending on how many people are interested in pursuing an MBA.

Having said the above, as per the Geographic Trend Report 2018 published by GMAC, here is how each geographical region performed on the GMAT.

Average GMAT score in various geographies from 2013 till 2017

The table below showcases the test takers in various geographies in every testing year from 2013 till 2017.

Region TY2013 TY2014 TY2015 TY2016 TY2017
Canada 562 566 579 581 589
Mexico, Caribbean, and Latin America 487 489 507 494 510
United States 569 574 588 595 604
Australia and Pacific Islands 571 575 583 586 592
Central and South Asia 594 593 599 602 608
East and Southeast Asia 602 604 621 625 627
Africa 446 449 461 485 473
Middle East 461 452 452 449 447
Eastern Europe 537 542 574 561 570
Western Europe 593 590 604 613 620

As per the figures mentioned above, since thetesting year 2013, test takers in East and Southeast Asia have had the highest average GMAT score in comparison to test takers in various other regions. On the flip side, test takers in the Middle East had the lowest average GMAT score in the testing year 2017 and while they were ahead of test takers in Africa in testing years 2013 and 2014, their average GMAT score dipped in the subsequent years while the average GMAT score of African test takers climbed a few points.

What does the Average GMAT score not tell you?

It may be deciphered from the tables above that an average GMAT score of 563.43 is extremely underwhelming and will not place you in a position to target any of the top business schools in the world. At the same time, though, you may begin to feel that if you have a GMAT 740, you have an above-average score for even the highest ranked business school in the world and thus a very strong MBA admission chance. This is where the fallacy lies for even if you report a score above the average GMAT declared by your target school, you mightstill not gain admission to the program. Let us focus on the reasons for the same:

  • It is important to understand that the school mentions its average GMAT score; this implies that the school accepts students with scores below the average, as well as above. Hence, while you could gain admission to the program with a score below the average GMAT score stated by the school, you could also be unsuccessful in gaining admissionwith a score above the average GMAT score.
  • While the GMAT is an important component of the applications process, various other elements of your application, especially your work experience, extra-curricular activities, and written samplesmatter, as well. The leading business schools across the world evaluate your profile in a holistic manner and take cognizance of each of these aspects. Thus, even an above-average GMAT score will not be of much value if you cannot portray your skills, strengths, and career aspirations in a compelling way.
  • There are a large number of students who amass high GMAT scores; many schools, however, prefer having smaller cohorts to facilitate a study model based on discussion. Considering the limited seats available, top-notch schools use strict evaluation criteria and purely a high GMAT score may not be enough to make you fit the bill. You will be competing with others in your pool with high GMAT scores; thus, for instance, an Indian male applicant with an IT background will be compared to other Indian male applicants with IT experience, and the average GMAT score of the pool may be much higher than the average GMAT score reported by the school in question.

Please watch the following video to understand how you can evaluate your own profile from the point of view of MBA applications:

How to use Average GMAT score to set your target GMAT score?

Having read the above, you may be left wondering that the average GMAT score holds little relevance in the overall scheme of your GMAT preparation. However, this is not true and one needs to focus on what really matters.

Having information pertaining to the median GMAT score is of immense importance because it helps you assess your competition. The average GMAT score of a certain MBA program provides you an understanding of the standards that the school maintains and the expectations it has from a potential candidate. This knowledge has value as it tells you what a good GMAT score is and thus helps channelize your energies towards attaining that score.

You may use the following steps to set your target GMAT score:

Step 1: Recognize your target school

  • Conduct thorough research and prepare a list of schools you are interested in joining.

Step 2: Identify application requirements

  • Understand the application requirements of each program, as well as, the application deadline in order to allocate a substantial amount of time for GMAT preparation, as well as, a reasonable period of time to prepare your resume and application essays.

Step 3: Check the average GMAT scores for MBA each of your target schools

  • Garner information pertaining to the average GMAT score of the most recent incoming class of your target schools and prepare a list of the same.

Step 4: Set your target score

  • To maximize your chances of making it to your target school, you must aim for a GMAT score that is higher than the average GMAT score of your target program. To set your target, choose the school with the highest average GMAT score from your target schools and add ~30 points to that score. The score you get will be your target GMAT score.

What if your score is lower than the Average GMAT score?

Students often wonder if it is possible to make it to a high-ranked business school with a GMAT score lower than the average score of that school. The response to this is that it is possible but one cannot bank on it. The Stanford MBA program and the Harvard MBA program have both admitted students with scores under a 600 on the GMAT; however, it is important to understand that such cases are rare and usuallythese students have an exceptional MBA application in terms of all other parameters.

Most of the students admitted to the top business programs have a GMAT score either close to the average GMAT score of their target school or a score above the same. Thus, it is always recommended that you apply to schools where your score is not an anomaly of sorts. If you do choose to apply to a top-tier MBA program despite a score lower than its average GMAT score, you will need to put forth a very compelling case with a spike in all other aspects of your application.

There are, however, some business schools that do not use GMAT scores as a criterion of assessment. This is usually true of Executive MBA programs that are aimed at working professionals who have displayed their abilities in the realm of business. Thus, if you have a very low GMAT score but possess over seven years of work experience, you may consider an Executive MBA program at one of the leading business schools that do not require your GMAT score.

Summary: What does the GMAT score say and not say?

  • The range of GMAT scores may vary across geographies, and the average GMAT score does not represent a whole. A GMAT score higher than the average boost your chances of admission.
  • Business schools consider various parameters in evaluating a student’s profile and the average GMAT score, in itself, does not act as a deal maker or a deal breaker.
  • The average score also dependent on nationality, gender, and professional background. Thus, for instance, Indian males with an engineering background tend to score higher on the GMAT; so, if you are an Indian male engineer, the GMAT expectations will be a lot higher. To prepare while you are on the move, download the free GMAT mobile app.

Planning to start your GMAT prep? Here is how you can start..

The task of linking the gap between your average GMAT score and the MBA program’s GMAT score is one that requires careful preparation, efforts, and focus. While it may initially seem like an uphill task, you can achieve your target score by sincerely following preparation strategies. Students are encouraged to follow the following steps:

0. Start with a full-length test

It may sound uncomfortable to give a full-length mock test before you have had a chance to study, but doing so has a number of great benefits. Taking a full-length test will familiarize you with the GMAT format and the broad scope of concepts being tested. What’s more is that doing so will let you understand the raw level from which you are starting and give you a rough idea of how long it will take you to reach your goal. So, you will need to work past your reluctance and start with this important step. Since you will have probably been away from books for a long time, it is quite possible that you will not score very well on this initial test. This is absolutely not something to be concerned about! Detecting a weakness early on is a good thing. So, just take the mock and relax. Whatever score you get, incorporate your understanding of your level into your plan and start preparing!

1. Build concepts

After taking your first test, your next logical step will be to develop your understanding of the GMAT concepts. As GMAT is a standardized test, the sections, number of questions in each section, type of questions in each section, number of questions of each type are all predefined, and even size and scope of the syllabus, are all predefined. This means that with an organized approach, you can easily develop your concepts in a limited time frame. The important thing is to find a good study resource and use it in a structured way. Please do not start with the official guide; while it is an excellent resource, it is focused almost entirely on testing and very little on concepts. You need to begin your preparation by understanding concepts and move on to solving questions once you have fully understood them. The guide contains a rich bank of retired GMAT questions that really should be saved for a later stage of your preparation, one where you have mastered the concepts.

1.1 Important virtues of a good concept development course

Pay close attention to the spread of concepts present in the study resource. It is important to make sure that all four sections of GMAT are covered, as various programs ignore AWA and IR. It would be better if you could go for a program that covers a small concept at a time and follows it with a dedicated exercise. This approach is a good one as it lets you understand a concept and then immediately apply it to GMAT like questions. Try to avoid resources that segregate concepts very broadly. For example, those, which have chapters, titled “Number Systems” or “Algebra”. It is quite likely that such resources have not done justice to the GMAT concepts, at the granular level and even if they have it will be hard for you to understand such overly broad concepts. The key to easily grasping a concept is taking it piece by piece.

2. Practice plenty of questions

Once you have satisfactorily developed your concepts, you need to get down to practicing the questions. For the first few weeks, practice without worrying about speed, only focus on accuracy. Once you have developed the said accuracy, start timing yourself to gain a balance between speed and accuracy. Practice all types of questions regularly

2.1 Pay special emphasis on reading comprehension practice

Reading comprehension questions need the most practice but are often ignored by aspirants. Remember, reading comprehension makes up a third of the verbal section and may take a long time to master. If you are not properly prepared for the reading comprehension questions you will find yourself getting a lot of questions wrong and wasting a great deal of time. Gaining reading comprehension skills will also improve your ability to read and process information quickly, which will be useful in the context of all GMAT questions.

2.2 Qualities to look for in good course for practice questions

Above all else, you need to look for sync between the quality of the course’s questions and those of the GMAT. GMAC spends a great deal of time and resources in developing their questions. Replicating this quality and capturing the essence of the questions is where most companies err. Solving questions that do not adequately represent the GMAT’s can confuse your understanding of the concepts and massively extend one’s preparation. Also, take a look at the number of questions of each type offered, the course should offer an adequate number of questions and detailed explanations. It would be best if the course had video explanations, as well.

3. Take a mock test every 7-10 days

GMAT aspirants commonly report that their accuracy in full-length mocks tends to be much lower than their accuracy in the shorter exercises. This is because there is a significant difference between solving a short exercise under a non-existent or self-imposed time limit and solving a full-length test under a strict time limit. No amount of other practice can make up for the need to take an adequate number of practice tests. So, you will need to take mock tests regularly with a fresh mind and exam-level discipline, attempt all four sections, follow the break timings, and not pause the test unless you absolutely must, etc.

3.1 Qualities of a good GMAT mock test series

First, you must make sure that the quality of the questions is on par with the quality of the real GMAT questions. Make sure that the tests are full-length and cover all four sections since several test series only cover quant and verbal. Next, take a look at what type of explanations and level of analysis the software offers. It is also crucial to judge how well your scores on these tests match your scores on the official GMAT mock test series (the GMAT Prep), in terms of number of mistakes per section, sectional scores, and overall scores. Of course, you also need to take a look at the number of tests offered.

4. Revise the concepts

You should not assume that your newly gained knowledge would simply stick with you for months on end. You will need to go back to your study resources and notes, periodically. Whenever you come back to a good conceptual resource, you will probably find new concepts that you overlooked earlier.

5. Analyze your mistakes

There is no need to get upset at the questions you got wrong- they are what will elevate your score. After a certain point in your preparation, it is the incorrect questions that will teach you the most. You will need to spend enough time on these questions to understand why you (1) chose the incorrect answer choice and (2) eliminated the incorrect answer choice. If you take care to understand these two factors, for every question you get wrong, you will see a remarkable improvement in your performance.

6. Solve the official guide

Solve the official guide, a few weeks before the exam. If you did the previous five steps correctly, you should do quite well on these questions, since they are only of average difficulty. Back yourself to achieve high accuracy in these questions while timing yourself. Once again, at this stage, make sure to analyze your performance closely and learn from the questions you get wrong.

7. Take the GMAT Prep tests

Take one GMAT prep test around the time when you want to schedule your GMAT appointment. The official mocks are the ones that will give you the best understanding of your GMAT level and thus, how much time you will need to hit your target score. Take the second official mock a week before the exam. Doing so will give you a realistic sense of what type of score you can expect. If you find that this score is far below your target, you might want to consider postponing your GMAT. If you feel that you need more official mock tests, you can purchase Exam Pack 1 and 2. Each pack has two mocks and costsUSD 50 each.

8. Consolidate your preparation

Your last two weeks of preparation should be focused on consolidating all you have learned. There are two main steps to this – (1) revising all the conceptual material thoroughly and (2) re-attempting all the questions that you got incorrect. Do not do anything new or fancy, at this point. Do not switch study material, do not change your decided section order, stick to your routine and make sure that you are active around the hours of your GMAT exam. Keep working with the strategy that has worked well for you, so far.

9. GMAT day!

Take the evening before your GMAT to relax and unwind, remember to get plenty of sleep that night. Make sure to reach the exam center, well in time. If you are more than 15 minutes late, you will be considered a no show. Do not try anything new on the exam day; stick with what has worked for you thus far. The test might appear to be very different from the mocks but do not worry, this is just nervousness. Hang in there and perform, soon you will see the test as “normal”. Do not analyze your performance as you give the exam, just focus on the question you are on. Do not spend more than two minutes on a question. If the question is taking longer, mark it at random and move on. Remember, it is possible to get the 99th percentile on GMAT, even with ~20% of the questions wrong. Utilize the breaks but make sure to get back in time. To avoid the pressure getting to you, just think of this as another mock.

10. Common mistakes to be avoided in the preparation

Starting with the official guide- as has already been explained, only start working on the official guide once you have a firm grasp on the concepts.

Not emphasizing enough of developing concepts- it is fairly common for aspirants to begin practicing questions, without first understanding the concepts. If you follow such an approach, you might find yourself working your way through a lot of material without seeing any real improvement. Please understand GMAT concepts first, before going all out into solving questions.

Ignoring reading comprehension preparation- reading comprehension is vital to securing a good GMAT score, as it covers ~40% of the verbal section and poor reading comprehension skills cannot only lead to incorrect attempts but also soak-up a lot of time. Conversely, good reading comprehension skills will help you read and analyze data quickly- a skill that will help you in every section of GMAT!

Focus on “tricks” rather than “concepts”- “tricks”, “techniques”, “short-cuts” will only do so much for your GMAT performance. A good GMAT score is the function of a robust grasp over the concepts. Hence, focus on “concepts” rather than “tricks”.

Focus on ‘rules’ rather than ‘meaning’ in sentence correction- ironically, most GMAT courses teach sentence correction in terms of “what is correct on GMAT” rather than teaching “how to ensure that correct meaning is conveyed effectively”. There is an infinite number of “rules” and one cannot understand all of them. This type of approach will not lead to confidence or performance. Your focus should be on understanding “concepts” so you know what “meaning” the sentence is trying to convey, and not just on “rules”.

Leaving the mocks for the end of preparation- knowing concepts is one thing, applying them on live questions, and performing on full-length tests are quite another. These three activities are related but also highly distinct, requiring distinct skills. A good GMAT score is only possible if you can be at the top of your concentration for 3.5 hours and solve a test with different question types, testing different skills under stiff time pressure. The exam temperament and skills do take some time to develop. Hence, please do not leave the mocks for the end of your preparation- include one mock every 7-10 days in your prep and increase the frequency as you get closer to the actual GMAT.

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