How helpful are GMAT preparation courses
7 myths about the GMAT
Pre-MBA students sometimes assume that the GMAT is similar in form and content to other standardized tests. And it's tempting to believe what they read about the online GMAT too.
In reality, the GMAT is a completely individual test and there is often misinformation about the online GMAT on the Internet. This blog article addresses some of the most common myths surrounding the GMAT and is designed to help you spend less time researching the GMAT and more time preparing for it.
Myth 1: The GMAT is an intelligence test
Have you ever wondered if the GMAT is related to an IQ test? There is a correlation, but it has nothing to do with the cause. For example, a famous anecdote says that there is a correlation between the number of babies born in a German city and the size of the local stork population, but this does not mean that storks bring the babies. There are many variables that come into play in a GMAT, but it is not possible to use them to make a realistic assessment of human intelligence.
Ultimately, however, the GMAT is nothing more than a test that determines certain skills and it requires critical, analytical and logical thinking. In addition, the standard of the GMAT is very high when it comes to quantitative and verbal skills. But there is no need to worry about a “low” IQ. Some researchers believe that personal IQ stabilizes after puberty and then inherent intellectual abilities do not change - but there is no evidence that this belief applies to the GMAT. Numerous studies have shown that you can improve your GMAT score with an effective study plan and competent teaching. In other words, the GMAT score is not predetermined. With the right preparation materials and resources, anyone can achieve a satisfactory result.
Myth 2: The GMAT is a business test
Another misunderstanding about the GMAT is that it is a test of business concepts that MBA applicants need to know. In reality, the GMAT is about simplifying the essentials while using common sense - so special business knowledge is not required. The GMAT planners just want to see how much you pay attention to details and how you deal with puzzles and brain teasers, for example.
But you shouldn't get too lost in details and certainly not fall into the opinion of providing answers that may meet an expectation. As mentioned, it is best to rely on common sense; because that's a lot less common than you might think. Rather, one should trust one's own logic and reason instead of applying what has been learned by heart.
Myth 3: You have to focus on specifics
While it is of course important to correctly answer as many questions as possible, one should never forget the broader context of the exam. The GMAT penalizes open questions more heavily than wrong answers. You have to manage your time well to ensure that all GMAT questions and all test sections can be answered. Time management is a strategy of its own and you shouldn't leave out any question - even if you have to guess it.
Difficult questions have more weight than simple questions when assigning a score, but it also costs a lot of points if you work too long on a difficult question and do not answer simple questions. The bigger goal should be to get a high score, so speed is as important as accuracy.
Myth 4: One month is enough to prepare for the GMAT
Delays are never helpful and if you don't keep a steady pace when preparing, you will only harm yourself. For this reason, you should spend at least two to three months full of concentration in order to be able to really optimize your score.
The GMAT tests individual skills and skills development takes time. A time window of one month is simply not enough for this. Test participants with a score of 700 and more invested up to 200 hours of work and four to six months of preparation. Some find it a chore to plan so far in advance, but the GMAT is too important to compromise admission to a business school with less than the full effort.
Myth 5: The toughest questions have to be practiced - everything else can be ignored
The following example should be given: Anyone who has not trained for a while and wants to get in shape to run a marathon would not strive for this goal without having trained for it beforehand. The same concept applies to the preparation for the GMAT.
First you should assess your current level and then set your goal a little higher. A large number of points in scoring often results from several small "wins". Really difficult questions tend to be the exception, and it can always happen that you get some of them wrong, no matter how rigorously you prepare for them. The best preparation approach is to gradually increase the level of difficulty, for example by working on questions that are slightly above your own performance threshold. You shouldn't deal too intensively with the difficult questions, because it can be at the expense of the time that you need to answer the easier questions - and these are undoubtedly in the majority at the GMAT. In any case, you should pay more attention to those areas in which you are not so good and try to improve yourself in them. In addition, it is advisable to continuously increase the level of difficulty in a manageable number.
Myth 6: A low GMAT score hurts if you have already achieved higher values in other tests
Top business schools focus on high GMAT scores, not average ones. But even if you have repeated the test and the result is lower, this is usually not a problem. A low GMAT score should not be viewed as a final assessment, but should be used as a starting point for improvement.
Some top business schools may ask the Applicant the Ambition Question if they only take the GMAT test once and it is quite common for it to be taken up to three times. If you are admitted to the course, the highest number of points is always included in the class average, and this data is then published by the schools. One should see the highest GMAT score as a true reflection of personal talent and tests with a lower score as steps towards that goal.
Myth 7: If you find a simple question on the GMAT, then you answered the previous question incorrectly
Anyone who has taken the GMAT knows that the level of difficulty of verbal and quantitative problems is determined by the answers to previous questions - but that shouldn't be bothered with during the test. It is important to concentrate on answering the current test question and to consider the answers to previous questions as irrelevant. You have to keep in mind that the GMAT is a demanding test, at the end of which you will find the true score. For research purposes, the test also includes experimental questions, which make up up to 25% of the entire questionnaire. Therefore, one should not assume that a previous question was answered incorrectly because the next one is easier. In addition, the assessment of a question as "easy" and "difficult" is very subjective and variable. What one judges as “easy” can be judged as “difficult” by someone else.
As stressful as the GMAT is, you can plan a lot and thus reduce the fear of it, as long as you see the preparation for the test as a challenge and inspiration. A high GMAT score can still have an impact on your career even if you have already graduated from business school. The GMAT measures a variety of skills that are relevant in the business world. It shows, for example, how well you work under time pressure and how well you use information to solve problems. Top business schools rely on the GMAT because it measures analytical and logical skills, but ultimately it is precisely these skills that are essential for life after business school.
Text source: www.topmba.com
Image sources: www.topmba.com, www.avrconsultants.org
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