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How the GMAT Avoids Bias

August 2, 2012

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I hear it from students all the time: The GMAT is unfair, what it tests doesn't matter, it's particularly tough for my [gender/ethnicity/background], and so on.

Yes, it's tough, and there may be reasons it is particularly difficult for you, but you should know how carefully the GMAT is designed to steer clear of systematic bias.

The key point to remember is that the GMAT is not written solely for the entertainment of the testmakers. The GMAC has to serve clients as well. In their case, the clients are business schools, who want the test to properly reflect the business-school-readiness of people like you.

While no test is perfect, you can trust that if business schools want something--whether it be an evaluation of certain reasoning skills, or a less-biased exam--it is in the GMAC's business interest to give it to them.

And more than any other standardized test I am familiar with, the GMAC does respond to their clients.

That doesn't mean the test is easy--far from it. But it does mean that you are on a fair playing field with the hundreds of thousands of other GMAT test-takers each year. Instead of dwelling on what might be wrong with the test, focus on acing it.

About the author: Jeff Sackmann has written many GMAT preparation books, including the popular Total GMAT Math, Total GMAT Verbal, and GMAT 111. He has also created explanations for problems in The Official Guide, as well as 1,800 practice GMAT math questions.

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