How to select a GMAT preparation method that suits you?

Planning to answer Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) exam? Selecting an ideal preparation method that suits you will do wonders! Read this post to know more on how to select a GMAT preparation method that suits you.

You are all set to take the GMAT. Now you are wondering which is the best way forward. Let us try to help you decide which prep method is good for you.

The obvious answer to anyone taking a test like GMAT is that you need to work hard. That is a no-brainer. But should you opt for a personal trainer or go in for self-study? When should you start prep? These are some questions we try to answer.

The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a computer-adaptive test (CAT) to assess your suitability for admission to a graduate management program. A CAT adapts to the examinee's ability level. This means the questions that appear are based on the answers you gave to previous questions. GMAT assesses you on verbal, reading, writing, analytical, and quantitative skills in English. It is a tough test. You need to work hard to score high.
So how do you approach the GMAT?

1. Decide when you want to take the test

The first thing is to decide when you want to take the test. This will help you focus on the time you have available for prep. Three to four months of prep time should be sufficient to prepare and retain what you have learned. Anything more than three months may lead you to lose focus and anything less than that could mean that you may be underprepared.

Once you have decided when you want to take the test, clear your schedule so that you do not have too much going on during the run-up to the test.

2. Take a sample diagnostic test to assess your weaknesses

We also suggest taking a sample diagnostic test just to assess where you stand and what areas the test involves. This can help you formulate a study plan.

3. Plan how you want to prep

Next, you need to ask yourself a lot of questions. Do you prefer self-study, one-on-one tutoring, or a group class? Do you prefer studying from a book or do you prefer audio and video learning? Do you have the funds to pay for the classes, books, and videos? Can you study for long periods? Or do you prefer studying in spurts?

The answers to these questions will help you decide your plan of action.

Once you know what your preferences are, you can start planning how you want to approach your prep. So now you know how much time you have and you have taken a sample test so you know what you need to work on. You also have an idea about what kind of help you need. Now is the time to sit and plan.

Plan out how you want to approach your prep in the time you have. Get all your resources together and write down your plan. Prepare a schedule.

As part of the plan, try and keep some time aside every day for your GMAT prep and prepare a schedule for what you want to study daily. Then stay focused on the schedule.

We suggest that you keep your plan flexible and easy to modify so that you can change it to make up for the lost time or for any other areas that you need to work on. There may be days where unforeseen circumstances prevent you from sticking to your schedule. You need to factor in these circumstances as well. So be flexible.

Also factor in time for recreation and unwinding. Too much study can make you dull. If you prefer self-study, but feel that it is not going well, try joining a class. If you prefer one-on-one training, hire a personal tutor. If required, join a class to help with your prep. Check out online resources. Enrol in online prep courses if possible.

Stay focused and motivated. Getting tired of studying and focusing on learning? Take a break. Do something you like. Play a sport, listen to music, grab a bite. Then come back to your studies.

4. Do plenty of sample tests and review them

We suggest, as you go through your prep, try and do as many sample tests as possible. Also, try to review the tests so that you know where you were lacking and what you need to work on.

Understand how the actual test works and the conditions at the actual test. Then simulate these conditions when you do sample tests. Condition yourself to follow the pattern for the actual exam, so that you get used to it.

The GMAT is a three-and-a-half-hour test with two optional eight-minute breaks in between. Simulate these conditions while taking practice tests. Pace yourself during the tests. Build up the mental and physical stamina to complete the tests in the given time. The more you practice in near-natural conditions, the more conditioned you will get.

Practice, practice, practice…that is the key to good scores.

Parting advice
Taking the GMAT requires you to work hard. You need to prepare for the test. Pick a method that suits your type of learning, the time at your disposal, and the resources you have available. Then prepare your schedule and go for it! Make sure your schedule is flexible and open to modifications as you go along. If you need to modify your plan and schedule, do it. Also, make sure to do plenty of practice and sample tests. Make sure to take them in simulated situations so that you get conditioned to take the actual test. Also, review your tests so you can iron out any weaknesses. We wish you all success in your GMAT prep!


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