GMAT Test Center Tip

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As if the scratchwork situation at GMAT testing centers weren't unfamiliar and stressful, you have limited materials to work with. The proctors are instructed to give you only one set of six sheets of scratch paper, and one black marker.

Personally, I've never had a problem with any of the resources I've been given: I find that the front and back of six sheets is ample room, and I've never had a pen run out of ink. If you practice carefully, the former shouldn't be an issue, though the latter is out of your control.

Just because they only give you one set of scratch pages and one pen doesn't mean that's all you'll ever get. It's just all they'll give you at one time.

If you run out of room on your scratch paper, you can raise your hand and ask for more; if your pen runs out of ink, you can raise your hand and trade it in for a new one. Of course, that takes time, and that's the tip I want to share with you today.

Every second on the GMAT is crucial, so help the proctor help you. If you need replacement paper or pen, when you raise your hand, hold up whatever it is you need. I can't guarantee you that every proctor will understand your message, but in most cases, they've been proctoring GMATs for a long time, and there are only so many reasons you might have for needing their attention.

Best of all, knowing this strategy can reduce your stress level a little bit. You won't run out of materials, and if you do need to replace something, it shouldn't take more than a few seconds.



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.

Total GMAT Math

The comprehensive guide to the GMAT Quant section. It's "far and away the best study material available," including over 300 realistic practice questions and more than 500 exercises!
Click to read more.