GMAT Exam Pattern

GMAT Exam Pattern

 GMAT Exam Pattern- GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) is an entrance exam conducted by GMAC (Graduate Management Admission Council) several times a year. It serves as a criterion for seeking admission in management programs worldwide. GMAT scores are accepted by 2300 B-schools across 110 countries. MBA aspirants can take the exam five times in 12 months with a minimum gap of 16 days between any two consecutive attempts.

As for the schedule, the candidates are free to register and choose their exam dates throughout the year. So, you need to select your desired time slot while registering for the exam. The application form has to be submitted online at
GMAT Exam Pattern
GMAT is a computer-adaptive test that assesses a candidate’s proficiency in four specific sections. Each section is allotted a particular time limit and a separate scoring range. Because of the nature of the exam, the difficulty level of questions is determined by the answers given by the candidate in the previous questions. Given table illustrates the exam pattern of GMAT 2021:


Sections Number of Questions Time Limit (Minutes) Score Range
Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) 1 30 0 – 6
Integrated Reasoning (IR) 12 30 1 – 8
Quantitative 31 62 0 – 60
Verbal 36 65 0 – 60


1.     Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) is basically a written task that requires you to analyse a given argument and present your evaluation of the same. You need to think over the reasons behind the argument, review it from different angles, and write your answer with supporting facts and examples. The essay is judged on the basis of the organization of ideas, grammar, and required analysis.
2.     Integrated Reasoning (IR) comprises questions that test the decision-making and logical skills of the candidates. Certain data is provided in the questions which you are expected to examine to reach a solution. The following four types of questions feature in IR section:
·   Two-Part Analysis
Here, the questions are accompanied by multiple choices displayed in the form of a table. The candidates must pick one answer per column.
·   Table Analysis
In this type, the data is given in a table format and you have to answer in yes/no or true/false.
·   Multi-Source Reasoning
In this, the information is represented in 2-3 tabs in tables, charts or text format. You are required to choose from answer options like yes/no, true/false, or similar others.
·   Graphics Interpretation
As the name implies, here you have to interpret information from a graphical image or a graph. These questions are primarily fill-in-the-blanks that need to be completed by selecting the appropriate response from pull-down menus.
3.     Quantitative section consists of multiple-choice questions based on algebra, arithmetic, and geometry. The purpose of this part is to gauge the mathematical aptitude of the candidates. The quantitative section has mainly two kinds of questions, problem-solving and data sufficiency. Questions on problem-solving are generally more in number than those of data sufficiency. You are required to work out the problem-solving questions using fundamental mathematical concepts. On the other hand, data sufficiency questions entail figuring out whether the given information is adequate for resolving the stated query.
4.     Verbal section involves questions that tend to check the candidate’s expertise in the English language. Verbal questions belong to the following three categories:
·   Reading Comprehension
Here, a passage of around 350 words is given along with 4-6 multiple-choice questions. The passage focuses on a particular topic and you have to read and examine it to answer the related questions.
·   Sentence Correction
Sentence correction questions are formulated to see your knowledge of English grammar rules and usage. Each question features a sentence with an underlined or marked portion for which you are asked to choose an appropriate answer option.
·   Critical Reasoning
Critical Reasoning (CR) is composed of questions that seek to evaluate the rational thinking abilities of candidates. Each CR question is given in the form of an argument and a set of five possible statements or conclusions.

GMAT Syllabus

If you want to ace GMAT 2021, you must be aware of the important topics of each section. Prepare the following topics for the exam:
Analytical Writing Assessment
There is no specified syllabus for AWA. The given question can be argument-based or issue-based. The candidates are either asked to analyse the argument or write against or for the topic. The topic may be fetched from any subject.
Integrated Reasoning
Similar to AWA, there is no syllabus mentioned for IR. The questions present information from any kind of source. However, it necessitates basic mathematical skills including solving equations and sorting tabular data.
Quantitative Section
Questions in this section are generally asked from the given areas:
Arithmetic: Number System, Ratio & Proportion, Percentages, Averages, Profit & Loss, Simple & Compound Interest, Time & Work, Sets, Probability, and Time, Speed, & Distance.
Algebra: Functions, Permutation & Combination, Arithmetic & Geometric Progression, Quadratic Equations, Inequalities, Basic statistics, and Linear Equations.
Geometry: TrianglesLines and Angles, Quadrilaterals, Circles, Polygon, and Coordinate geometry.
Verbal Section
The RC passages are themed around any sphere of humanities, science, business, and economics and the related questions can be inferential, factual, or structural. For the other part of the section, you must be well-versed with parts of speech, modifiers, idioms, parallelism, subject-verb agreement, strengthening and weakening statements, etc.
How to Prepare for GMAT 
Most of the GMAT aspirants target a score of 700 and above. If you aim to crack the exam well, you must devise a proper preparation strategy. Before you register and select your date, estimate how many days or months you would need to prepare for the exam. Thereafter, incorporate the followings things in your study schedule:
·       Get a good grasp on the fundamental topics of the Quantitative section and take practice tests to monitor your progress.
·       Regularly read good newspapers, magazines, and books to enhance your language and comprehension skills.
·       Brush up your grammar and other important concepts of the English language.
Finally, keep attempting online mock tests to improve your accuracy in all sections.
Points to Note:
·       Scores in AWA and IR are not considered in the total GMAT score. However, their scores can be considered during the admission process of some B-schools.
·       While the scoring of AWA is incremented in half-point intervals, the scores of the other three sections are calculated in one-point intervals.
·       Candidates are not allowed to use calculators for the Quantitative section. However, they can utilize an on-screen calculator in the IR section.

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