May 20, 2022
GMAT course workbook

FAQs About the GMAT

The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is required for admission to several thousand graduate business programs. The GMAT measures verbal, analytical writing, and mathematical skills, and taking it should be one of your first steps in applying to business school.

But before you take it, get answers to these commonly asked questions.

How many times can I take the GMAT?

You can take the GMAT as many times as you’d like, but it’s generally not advisable to take it more than three times. While the schools you submit to will use your highest score, they’ll also look at your testing history over the last five years when considering your candidacy.

Do most people retake the GMAT?

It is not uncommon, but only around 20% of people sitting the exam are retaking it. Tests have been known to go up as much as 30 points in a retake, but it is also possible that your score will decrease.

Think seriously about retaking the exam and make sure that if you decide to retake it that you’ve prepared extensively to make it worth your time.

What GMAT score is necessary to get into a good school?

Depending on your definition of “good” this will very significantly. However, as a benchmark, most people who are accepted into a top five school like Harvard or Stanford have an average score of 700 or higher and an average GPA of 3.5 or higher.

Your GPA will prove very important in the decision making process. If you’re still in school make sure you get as many A’s as possible because your GPA will help you leverage your candidacy when applying to business school.

What are the test dates for the GMAT exam?

The GMAT exam is offered year-round which will give you a large degree of flexibility in scheduling the test to maximize your preparation time. To find out when your test will be you need to register for a test center in your area and a time slot will be offered for the exam.

What schools use GMAT scores?

GMAT scores are a global testing standard used by over 4,800 business schools around the world. If you’re going to invest the time and money to go to business school for your MBA it would be wise to only attend a school that uses the GMAT score because they will be more impressive on your resume when you graduate.

In general, the better ranking the school, the more opportunities for employment you could have available upon completion of the course.

What ID do I need to bring to the test?

You’ll need bring a government-issued, current, and original piece of identification. This means no expired or photocopied documents will be accepted. A passport, military ID, government-issued ID, or driver’s license would all work on testing day.

What if I need to cancel my test appointment?

You can cancel online or by calling your region’s GMAT customer service line. If you are going to cancel however, you should strive to do so at least seven full calendar days before the exam date.

  • If you cancel with the seven-day buffer you may receive a partial refund.
  • If you cancel within the seven-day window you’ll forfeit your entire registration fee.

How should I prepare for the exam?

The GMAT Admission Council provides test preparation materials and software to purchase and also offers recommendations on how to study for the exam.

The average GMAT taker studies between three and six months prior to sitting the exam. You may also consider taking a prep course, or hiring a tutor.

When do I get my test scores?

Immediately after you complete the test you will get an unofficial number reflecting your quantitative, verbal, and total scores. For the official version, the scores will be provided within 20 days after your completion of the test. These scores will be both available to you and the programs with which you chose to share them.