GMAT Test-Taking Strategies

Do you prefer to tackle your hardest projects or assignments first, while your mind is fresh? Or do you like to ease your way into your most difficult work? Your own personal psychology determines your answer, and the designers of the GMAT understand that individuals often appreciate a choice in the matter. For this reason, they have recently made a change to accommodate your particular preference when you take this exam.

Select Your Own Sequence

This new feature, which the GMAT calls Select Section Order, lets you choose the order in which you will complete the GMAT exam sections. You can now choose from three options:

1. Analytical Writing Assessment Integrated Reasoning > break > Quantitative > break > Verbal
2. Verbal > break > Quantitative > break > Integrated Reasoning > Analytical Writing
3. Quantitative > break > Verbal > break > Integrated Reasoning > Analytical Writing

Why 3 Options?

Enabling GMAT test-takers to determine their own order of segments puts everyone on a level playing field. All test-takers now have the option to choose whether they want to begin with a writing assessment, verbal test or quantitative test. In addition, each test-taker can begin with what they feel is the most or least challenging section. There is no need to worry about which sequence looks best to schools, because this choice is not shared with schools.

Prior to this change, with just one section order, some test-takers could, in theory, get off to a more confident start than others. Some had a test structure that was more aligned with their preferences than others. Fairness may not exist everywhere, but putting everyone at ease is an equitable and sensible approach the GMAC deemed worth implementing.

The two new sequences were chosen after GMAC ran a series of pilot tests. Test-takers were allowed to choose different selection orders, and sequences #2 and #3 received the most "votes." Regardless of the sequence you choose, you have the option of taking an eight-minute break between test sections. Or you could keep your momentum going and plow through!

There Is One More Change to the GMAT

Prior to July 2017, GMAT test-takers had to fill out a series of questions to update their profiles after completing the exam. GMAC has removed this step, so test-takers can now find out their scores immediately after finishing the exam. Instead of providing this information on the day of the exam, you can now update your profile ahead of time on the GMAT website.

These changes may not be earth-shattering, but they are designed to reduce tension on exam day. Less stress should allow for greater focus, and every test-taker deserves that opportunity.

Learn more about the Baylor online MBA program.


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