Beginner's Guide to the GMAT

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If you've been following this site for the last couple of months, you've seen several installments of my series, "The Beginner's Guide to the GMAT." The purpose of this article is to provide a Table of Contents for new and future readers, and point everyone to a couple of articles that weren't part of the Beginner's Guide, but would have fit nicely.

There are seven parts to The Beginner's Guide to the GMAT:

  1. GMAT Scoring. Learn what factors go into the 600, 700, or whatever number you're shooting for. There's also a brief introduction to the Computer-Adaptive Test.
  2. Critical Reasoning. This one discusses the question type in general, and also touches on the various sub-categories within CR.
  3. Reading Comprehension. The types of questions, the types and lengths of passages, and a bit of strategy for coping with them.
  4. Sentence Correction. Find out what types of grammar is tested and learn some basic strategy.
  5. GMAT Math Content. There's a lot of misinformation out there about what exactly is "fair game" for a GMAT Math question. This installment attempts to start you out on the right foot.
  6. Data Sufficiency. Walk through an example question, learn the answer choices, and start familiarizing yourself with this unique question type.
  7. GMAT Resources. Avoid cramming a bookcase full of useless GMAT prep materials and spend your study time on what will help you the most.

Here are two other articles that are introductory in nature (and important) that I wrote before embarking on the Beginner's Guide:

  • Introduction to the GMAT Computer-Adaptive Test. There's a lot more here than in the "GMAT Scoring" article listed above. Find out what it is, how to prepare for it, and why you should ignore some common myths.
  • All About the GMAT AWA. The Analytical Writing Assessment is often ignored, but it's worth a little bit of effort. This article touches on what it is, how it's scored, why you should care, and how much effort it's worth.

Most of these articles point you to several other pieces I've written that cover the topics in more depth. In addition to those links, you can browse GMAT HACKS by category with the links on the left sidebar.



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!
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