What to Expect on the GMAT Quantitative Section

The quantitative section is the first of the two computer-adaptive sections on the GMAT. Computer adaptive means that the test adapts as you progress based on your answers. If you get questions right, the test gets harder; if you get them wrong, it gets easier. It is scored on a scale of 0-60 and makes up half of your overall score, which is on a scale of 200-800.

GMAT Math

The quantitative section of the GMAT is also known as the “math” section because it tests core math topics such as algebra, geometry, rates and probability. These subjects are at the high-school level, but GMAT math questions often require creative problem solving to complete them in the time allotted. There are a total of 37 questions and you have 75 minutes to complete them, which gives you about two minutes per question.

Types of Quant Questions

There are two question types on the GMAT math section: data sufficiency and problem solving. There tend to be slightly more problem-solving questions than data-sufficiency ones. Problem-solving questions are more typical of problems you might have seen in school. You will be presented with some information, a question, and five different answer choices. You will then have to select the best option.

Data-sufficiency questions are less conventional. Instead of asking you to solve a problem, they ask you if you can solve a problem. You will be presented with some information and a question, in addition to two further pieces of information labeled (I) and (II). You will then have to figure out which pieces of information are required to solve the problem, or if it can be solved at all. Questions look like this:

Is a>b?

(I) b=2
(II) a+b=8

(A) (I) alone is sufficient to answer the question
(B) (II) alone is sufficient to answer the question
(C) Both together are sufficient to answer the question
(D) Each alone is sufficient to answer the question
(E) Both together are not sufficient to answer the question

Now that you know what to expect on the quantitative section, the next step is preparing. Adequate preparation is required for scoring well on the GMAT.

Sources:

GMAC: Sample Problem Solving Question

GMAC: Sample Data Sufficiency Question

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