GMAT Frequently Asked Questions

GMAT Scoring FAQ

Are all sections of the GMAT computer-adaptive?

No, only the verbal and quantitative sections of the exam use computer adaptive technology (CAT). Adaptation in these two sections is on a question-by-question basis.

How does computer adaptation affect scores?

The computer adjusts the difficulty level of the questions up or down, depending on student responses. The procedure for this is quite complicated, but it ultimately means that the same number of correct answers can result in different scores on different tests.

How are the integrated reasoning and analytical writing sections scored?

The integrated reasoning score is mostly based on the number of correct answers. Analytical writing essays are scored by a human grader and a computer program and then averaged.

GMAT Content FAQ

Does the GMAT test my knowledge of business or any business-related field?

No, the GMAT is not an assessment of business skills or knowledge. The GMAT does test general abilities such as quantitative reasoning, comprehension of written texts, and writing.

Did my undergraduate education adequately prepare me for the GMAT?

Regardless of the field you studied, the answer is an emphatic "no." Success on the GMAT requires both a specific set of skills and an understanding of how those skills are assessed on the exam.

Are some sections of the GMAT more important than others?

Yes. Most available evidence indicates that the order of priority is as follows: total scores, quantitative scores, verbal scores, integrated reasoning scores, and analytical writing scores.

GMAT Accessibility FAQ

How often is the GMAT offered?

Almost every day of the year. Test centers are typically not open on Sundays or holidays.

How many times can I take the GMAT?

As many times as you wish, but no more than five times in any period of 12 consecutive months. There is also a mandatory 16-day waiting period between test attempts.

In how many countries is the GMAT offered?

At last count, about 114. Test-takers in North America and Europe should have no trouble finding test centers and dates, but appointment availability is dictated by demand. This means that students in many African and Asian countries have fewer centers and dates from which to choose.

The GMAT and Business School Admissions FAQ

What scores will I need to get accepted to a top business school?

Most programs publish the average scores of their accepted students online. Schools in the top 10 have averages above 700, while top-50 institutions are generally 650 or above.

Do business schools care about the analytical writing assessment?

It seems that the writing score is far less important than total, quantitative, and verbal scores. However, low writing scores (below institutional averages) have been known to adversely affect applications.

How do GMAT scores compare to undergraduate GPA in business school admissions?

Although both are important considerations, most evidence shows that the GMAT is the more significant of the two.

GMAT Policies and Procedures FAQ

What should I bring with me when I take the GMAT?

Valid photo identification that meets GMAC's criteria and the letter or email confirming your appointment. Aside from sweaters and eyeglasses, all personal items must be stored in lockers while taking the GMAT.

Am I allowed to discuss GMAT content after I take the test?

No. All students sign strict non-disclosure agreements that forbid them from reproducing or divulging test content in any form.

Can I send only my highest GMAT scores to business schools?

No, score reports include all test attempts within the last five years. However, most business schools allow students to designate the scores they want considered, as long as they are all from the same test.