• Mission MBA

GMAT Myths

Updated: Dec 22, 2017

In this world of Internet, where myths and rumors quickly become facts, it is necessity to know the truth behind the story.


"Here, we, Mission MBA, will help you resolve the mystery and bust out the myths regarding GMAT"




GMAT myth 1: You must be good in Mathematics and English


Many of the candidates discourage themselves from taking GMAT because they think that they have forgotten the basic Mathematics and Verbal concepts.


GMAT is not a school exam, It tests you on your IQ.


All you need to know is


  • Basic concepts of mathematics such as Calculations, Square roots and exponents.

  • Basic understanding of English language.


IN FACT THE MOST IMPORTANT PART IS YOUR REASONING AND ANALYTICAL PROBLEM SOLVING ABILITY.

Yes, if you are good with mathematics and English reading and English grammar it will help you to crack GMAT in a short period of time(2-3 months). But if you feel you have a good IQ and forgotten the basic concepts, you can still go to your desired score in a little bit longer duration(3-5 months).



GMAT myth 2: Comparing GMAT with GRE, but with more business content.

Many GMAT aspirants confuse between the GMAT and GRE. Often, B-school hopefuls make the mistake of assuming the GMAT is a business-oriented clone of the GRE.

Sure, there are some similarities between these two tests, but that is only limited to the language and sections.


Both have a Verbal Section, as well as a Quant Section, and an AWA Essay Section.

But the types of Questions and patterns is incomparable.


QUANT: In GRE the quant is calculative, moreover you can use calculator. On the other hand in GMAT the quant is not calculative but analytical. GMAT’s Quantitative section carry most of the questions which are based on Class 8th-10th Mathematics but features tricks and traps.


VERBAL: Whereas GRE’s Verbal focuses more on vocabulary, GMAT’s Verbal focuses on Grammar and basic understanding of the language.


AWA section: GMAT’s AWA section has a single Analyze an Argument Task, while the GRE has both Argument and Issue Essays.


IR Section: The GMAT has an extra drilling section called Integrated Reasoning, whereas GRE has no such section

GMAT myth 3: A month is enough to prepare for the GMAT


Presumptions are always good in GMAT Critical Reasoning Section, but not here.

The more you delay studying at a consistent pace, the more likely it is to hurt you. At least 2-3 months of full concentration are necessary in order to see substantial score improvements.

Yes, if you have completed your GMAT course , appeared for EXAM recently and want to increase your score, Mock Tests, Strategies, Appropriate Guidance may help you increase your score by 40 - 60 points in just 15 -20 more days.


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Otherwise GMAT is a skills test, and skill development takes both time and shear practice. So a window of one month is quite simply insufficient for both.


Test takers who score 700 or above often commit to 200 hours of work, rationed over 2 to 4 months. You may find it tedious to plan that far ahead, but the GMAT is a door for your dreams. So we can dedicate 2-4 months for it.



GMAT myth 4: Focus on the hardest questions; forget the rest.


"If you haven’t walked a road from a while, and you wouldn’t wish to climb Everest straightaway."


The same concept applies to GMAT preparation. You have to go step by step.


  • Analyze yourself by a mock test or some GMAT official guide Questions.

  • Start practicing Questions which you find of Intermediate Difficulty.

  • Be confident with easy and intermediate level Questions.

  • Since GMAT is adaptive exam; If you the above correct, only then you get a chance to see higher difficulty level Questions.

  • The hardest questions are often outliers, and there’s a high probability that you will get some of these wrong no matter how rigorously you prepare.

  • Large score increases result from several small gains.

  • The best preparation approach is to incrementally increase the difficulty level by working on questions that are slightly above your current capability.

  • Spending too much time on the toughest questions might not be all that helpful, as this strategy can take time away from the less-challenging majority of GMAT questions.

  • Find the areas where you are inconsistent and work on building those skills.

  • Gradually increase the level of difficulty, making sure to do so by manageable amounts.



GMAT myth 5: Easy Question on screen means you answered the previous Question Wrong


Everyone who takes the GMAT knows that GMAT is Adaptive: the difficulty level of verbal and quantitative problems is determined by your answers to the previous questions, but you shouldn't concern yourself with this while taking the test.


You need to focus on answering the question in front of you correctly, and your answers to previous questions are now irrelevant to that task.


Moreover the question is marked difficult on the basis of two specific data: Time taken by the test takers to attempt it, and number of test takers who attempted the question wrong. So an easy question with little trap can also be considered difficult.


It is too subjective to judge weather a question is difficult or easy during the test.

Furthermore you do not wish to waste your crucial 75 minutes in analyzing the difficulty level of Question.


Remind yourself that the GMAT is sophisticated enough to reveal your true score level at the end.


The test also includes experimental questions for research purposes, which may account for up to 25% of the total. You therefore shouldn't assume that you missed a prior question just because the next question is easier.


JUST STAY ON TRACK, FOCUS ON THE QUESTION ON SCREEN


GMAT myth 6: It’s all about the first eight questions

“Attempt first 10 Questions Correct to score 700 +”

“if you haven’t got first 10 correct you can never score 700 +.”


All these above statements does not make much sense. The game is simply to attempt consecutive questions correct and avoid consecutive questions wrong.


So do not waste most of your time in the first 10 questions and leave the questions at the end as done by majority of the test takers.


Getting Initial Questions correct may help you to get a good score, but it is almost same as getting the next 10 questions with high accuracy.


So spending a high proportion of time in doing so is not advisable.


ONE APPROACH MAY BE


1-20 Questions: HIGH ACCURACY WITH sufficient amount of time. ( 40-44 min).

20-30 Questions: run through, focus on 7 Questions and do them correct. (13-15 min).

30-41 Questions: good accuracy. (21-24 mins).


NOTE: you were only focusing on 7 questions in second part so getting them correct is not a big task.


INSTEAD OF TAKING CHANCES IN LAST 10 QUESTIONS, YOU JUST TOOK CHANCES IN 1st 4 QUESTIONS

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GMAT myth 7: Very high accuracy

This is one of the most misconception among the test takers, you do not have to score 90-100 % accuracy.


It is all about marking 95-100 % of the easy and intermediate questions correctly, and 60 or more % of the hard Questions Correctly.


You may get Q-50 marking 6 Questions wrong and Q-51 marking 3 Questions wrong out of 37 total Questions, given that you made mistake only in hard Questions.


Even marking 8 - 10 Questions wrong in Verbal takes you to a decent score in Verbal(V-38 +).


ATTEMPTING 75 % OF THE EXAM CORRECTLY, and MISTAKES IN ONLY DIFFICULT QUESTIONS CAN FETCH YOU A 700.


GMAT myth 8: Similar impact of Verbal and Quant in GMAT Score.

While it is not at all advisable to just entirely depend on one subject, it is true that a high score in Verbal is unusual and therefore has a slight edge over Quantitative section in increasing overall Percentile.


In other words, a raw Verbal score of 45 places you in the 99th percentile among test-takers, while a raw Quantitative score of 45 places you in the 70th percentile.



GMAT myth 9: More Number of Practice Tests = High score in GMAT


YES, Attempting Mock Tests plays a major role in your GMAT preparation and is inevitable in the process of achieving your desired score.


But Reviewing your Wrong Answers and understanding them to concretize your concepts is far more important then attempting number of mock tests.


6 – 8 Quality Mock Tests with good explanation are enough are enough for you.


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GMAT myth 10: What to do if I Have Multiple Scores


First of all you should know that GMAT scores are like your School’s yearly progress report.

They carry all your accepted scores of your past 5 Year GMAT attempts.

Now this may or may not be a hindrance. While some B-schools are just focused on your maximum score, Others try to look at all recent GMAT scores.


If you’re worried that a record of a disappointing GMAT score could hurt your chances of admission, ask your target school about their policy on past scores. Do enough research on your B-Schools and plan accordingly.


Consecutive 720 in 2 months is worse then a single 720.

Similarly scores such as 600 to 700 in small time frame may be considered as passion one have towards GMAT.



GMAT myth 11: GMAT preparation requires lot of money and expensive books


The cost of GMAT prep varies from Person to Person, If you are good with basic concepts, some bunch of good questions with crystal clear explanation, you are good to go.

If you face conceptual issues and currently lie on a low score.


Go to a GMAT mentor rather then spending multiple times on various books and then joining a GMAT mentor.


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