Studying for a good GMAT score

Improving your GMAT score may seem difficult, but with hard work, it is certainly possible. In this article We’ll help you target your weaknesses in the three different sections of the GMAT (Verbal, Quantitative, and the Analytical Writing Assessment) and improve your score as efficiently as possible.

Improving Your Verbal, Quant, and Essay Scores

1. Verbal Score

To improve your verbal score, it may help to read high-caliber journals and publications such as the New Yorker, Businessweek, The Economist, and the Atlantic Monthly. While reading, look up vocabulary words you don’t recognize; practice identifying the author’s main point and differentiating between the various perspectives at work. Try to target your specific weaknesses; if you have trouble reading science passages, for instance, you should practice reading scientific journals. In addition to reading, also embark on an aggressive plan to refamiliarize yourself with grammar rules. Do not rely on your intuitive knowledge of grammar to handle the exam as many of the questions will require you to understand the rules actively and not simply rely on your ear.

2. Quantitative Score

To improve your quantitative score, it helps to begin by re-familiarizing yourself with fundamentals such as number properties, basic geometry, arithmetic, and algebra. You may not see results immediately, but short-cuts (which are crucial if you want to have enough time to complete the entire exam) often involve a familiarity with numbers that can be cultivated over a long period. Target your weaknesses by understanding the concepts in their most basic form and then grasping them in more sophisticated situations that require multiple steps and complex reasoning.

3. Essay (AWA) Score

To improve your AWA score, begin by reviewing the parameters of the section. Understand what you will be asked to do within the time limit. Look over sample prompts for the Analysis of an Issue and the Analysis of an Argument sections to get a sense of the possible ideas, themes, and issues you will be required to analyze. Practice writing a few essays to get a sense of your ability to write under pressure, and consider preparing an “arsenal” of historical, literary, or current events issues you can refer to in your essays. It can also be helpful to ask your peers or a writing mentor for honest feedback on your practice essays. Before the exam, practice by giving yourself prompts on topics that are particularly challenging for you (if you know little about the environment, for instance, force yourself to write an essay in 30 minutes about that general topic). Above all, aim to develop the ability to quickly and spontaneously formulate a response to any topic or issue that is presented.

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