Studying for GMAT is not rocket science.. Any aspiring candidate can crack this test but there’s always a smarter way of doing things. GMAT is not about memorizing the formulas but it is about testing your ability to identify the moment and situation when you have to use them to solve the problem. The only problem here is questions are not hard but they are not straight forward either.
In this article, I will be listing few of the techniques adopted by many of the students to prepare for GMAT. (For TOEFL centers in India, check out this article.)
How to study & prepare for GMAT?
1. Create a schedule
You should always set a study schedule based on your current situation. GMAT is not a test taken only by students who are aspiring for a higher education it can also be written by working professionals who would want to enhance their career by taking up a Masters course.
Make a study schedule that would suit you study habits, and your strengths and weaknesses. Choose the hours for GMAT preparation wisely; this is when you should have both the free time and energy to completely devote yourself to the task at hand.
2. Don’t judge
The world is not going to end if you can not solve a GMAT problem. Don’t let what you don’t know get in the way of what you can learn and achieve. Always stay motivated to correct your mistakes and pick up smarter, better ways of navigating this exam.
3. Conceptualize Success
Conceptualizing or visualizing is a powerful tool that can make or mar your environment. This also helps change the way your mind and body react to your surroundings. When attempting practice tests, imagine that it’s D-Day and prepare yourself for what’s ahead. Never think you will perform badly on the D-day. Spend time every day imagining the various details of each test. This mental preparation will carry over to the actual test day and help you tackle questions with precision and clarity.
4. Meditating for few hours
Meditation and quiet time can work wonders in calming your nerves and relaxing your mind. Never get too anxious and get bogged down.
The best yoga techniques to apply is Pranayama.
5. Establish a baseline and pace yourself
Take one of the two free practice exams. This is to get familiarized with the software and also gauge your strengths and skills sets. Never take practice tests very casually. Remember to replicate actual test conditions during your practice exams.Pacing is key. Practice to the point where you don’t need to keep re-reading the question prompts.
6. Know your test thoroughly
Understand the different sections in GMAT. These are very important as you need to gather information and practice according to the sections.
7. Create flashcards
Record all your critical notes about the GMAT onto blank flashcards and make it a point to review your flashcards frequently.
8. Join online forums
Participate on online forums and join their discussion panel. You will gain knowledge out of your text books here. This is also crucial.Some of the forums are Beat The GMAT and Test Magic, pagalguy.com etc.
9. Read other success stories
This would amp up your confidence as well as help you get few inputs.
10. Enjoy the time !
Last but not the least, never forget to live the moment and understand what you are doing. Never follow the bandwagon and end up feeling like a burden. Enjoy what you are doing.
How to get a 700 on GMAT?
Now here are few tricks to solve the three sections in GMAT test.
How do you face a math problem? Traditionally you would try to read the question, solve the problem and then look for which answer choice matched my solution. What if the answer choices gave clues to what you needed to look for in the solution as well as whether there was a shortcut that you could use to save time. Interesting is it? So always glance through the answers first.
The take away from this tip is that answer choice are resources too and they can often help guide you on how to approach the problem.
Read the question prompt first and look at answer choices and immediately eliminate choices that are out of scope, moving top to bottom. Never forget that the Critical Reasoning passage provides a limited set of information. There tends to be a lot of answer choices with out-of-scope information.
The takeaway is that never get dissuaded by the irrelevant facts or information.
Skimming is the best method to crack this section. You need to be a faster and careful reader to solve the question that follows. I would say that all might feel they are well versed at this section. But the actual problem lies in understanding and the duration is taken to read the passage. For some people. skimming would be a better option and for some reading carefully by simultaneously taking notes could be a good one. Hence, it is up to you to choose the best way.
The takeaway is that never get carried away by the unfamiliar and irrelevant facts in your reading bit. Extract the most important elements only.
It is rightly said that there is “no shortcut to success”. Similarly, there is no magical tricks or formulas to clear this test. This is sheer sincerity and passion. Here is a survey result done by GMAT conducted in 2014 stating the number of hours taken by students to prepare for the test and it is found that those who do better on the GMAT exam tend to spend more time studying for it, on average. But this is not a hard and fast rule, you can always be a change.
So, all the best folks.