Achieving Your Goals on the GMAT

The best way to develop the necessary skills to do well on the GMAT: Lots of practice

Welcome to the GMAT. To many business-school applicants, the test appears to be the most painful hurdle they must clear in their admissions process, and the one for which their work experience has left them the least prepared.

Your success on the GMAT will result from three separate types of skills, all of which can be improved through preparation:

1. GMAT skills. These allow you to find the correct answers to GMAT questions. GMAT skills include math skills (geometry, algebra, compound interest, and the like), reading skills (reading quickly and retaining information), logic skills (knowing how to break down an argument), grammar skills, and writing skills.

2. Pacing and endurance. The GMAT is both a sprint and a marathon. You have less than two minutes, on average, for each verbal question, and barely two minutes for each quantitative question.

3. Guessing technique. Everybody has to guess sometimes. What differentiates good test takers from great is the ability to guess in such a way as to maximize the chances for a correct answer.

So how do you develop these skills? Practice, practice, practice. There's no substitute for working through many, many GMAT problems.

Adapted from McGraw-Hill's GMAT, by James Hasik, Stacey Rudnick, and Ryan Hackney. Book-only and book-CD-ROM versions available wherever books are sold

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