Unlike most standardised tests, the GMAT is offered year-round in most locations around the world. Your exam date should be decided with your programs’ admissions deadlines in mind and you should give yourself enough time to prepare for the GMAT.
As previously discussed, the average preparation time for the GMAT has extended to 4.5 months in 2019 for our students (vs. 3 months in 2013). This longer preparation timeline is mostly explained by the steady score increase. Just think that the Kellogg MBA Class of 2014 GMAT average was 713. In 2019, the incoming class GMAT average was 730.
Having said that, preparation time differs from students to students and relies heavily on a candidate’s current performance level and familiarity with the GMAT (which is why we always recommend new student to take our Free GMAT diagnostic test first and foremost). Some students can score well for the GMAT with just a few weeks of preparation, but they are the exceptions, not the norms. Assuming you are an average candidate, your ideal preparation timeline should look like the following:
Phase 1: Content Focus (first 6 – 8 weeks)
- Start from a Quant-heavy approach. More students have problem with the quantitative section of the GMAT than the verbal section. Good news, it is also the simpler section to improve fast (regardless of how intimidating it can be!)
- Practice topical questions during this time, maintain error log.
Phase 2: Accuracy Focus (next 4 – 6 weeks)
- Work on problem sets– 1 hour each time, get the methods and thought processes right to approach a question, time yourself, but take extra time.
- Review and update error log. Work on weaker question types
- Keep reducing time until you reach the exam timing
Phase 3: Exam Focus (next 4 – 6 weeks)
- Full length practice tests – we recommend that you take at least 4 to 6 practice tests before your real GMAT
- Review and analyse your tests – spend as much time to review than to complete them.
- For the last 2 tests, reduce the time by 10% – stress will impact your overall time management during the real GMAT and it is crucial that you feel confident enough
The reason why our students are so successful at scoring in the 730+ is because of our advanced practice methodology and support they receive in building and updating their timeline. Do not hesitate to be in touch with us to discuss your needs and we will help you build an effective timeline to get your GMAT done!