If you are applying to an MBA or other graduate management program, you’ll need to take the GMAT. This is a test designed to show admissions boards how you might perform in a Masters in Business Administration program. Your score is a key component in admission decisions and getting a higher score gives you a better chance of getting into your top choice. If you want to do as well as possible, consider doing some online GMAT test prep to get you ready for the exam.
Why Take the GMAT?
GMAT stands for Graduate Management Admissions Test. If you are applying to a business school program this is going to be a vital piece of your application. Universities all over the world require you to take the GMAT when applying for an MBA program and your scores will be a major deciding factor for the admissions boards reviewing your applications. Achieving a high score helps to show business schools that you are ready for their often rigorous programs and that you will perform well academically.
There are four sections on the GMAT: analytical writing, integrated reasoning, quantitative, and verbal. When you begin the exam, you are given three options for which order you take the sections in. Each section is scored differently and then your scores are used to create an overall score. Analytical writing is scored 0-6, integrated reasoning 1-8, quantitative and verbal 0-60. Your overall score is going to be between 200 and 800, in increments of ten points.
Where to Find Online Classes
There are many different options out there for GMAT test prep, both in person, in print, and online. One popular option is Kaplan Test Prep. This company was started by Stanley Kaplan back in the 1930s and they have been one of the leaders in test prep ever since. How well you do on a standardized test has nothing to do with your genetics, your class, or any innate abilities. Anyone who studies and prepares in a way that works for them has the ability to do well.
Kaplan Test Prep offers more than just preparation for the GMAT. They have test prep courses and materials for over 120 different tests. No matter what school you’re applying for, if you’re a high school student entering college, a university graduate applying for a Masters program, or an attorney hoping to pass the bar, there are Kaplan materials available to help you prepare for the tests you need to take.
Millions of people prepare for tests with Kaplan each year. These people are successful in their preparation as well, with many of them achieving better scores than they did on previous tests. In fact, Kaplan offers a guarantee with all their test prep courses: if you don’t get a higher score than you did on past tests, you will either receive a refund or free access to test materials so that you can continue studying.
The great thing about Kaplan is that they aren’t just an online school. They have test prep centers all over the world and they also publish test prep manuals and books of practice tests. However you like to learn, whether it’s by going through a book, meeting for an in-person class, or watching videos online, Kaplan has an option for you.
Available Classes and Materials
Kaplan offers in-person classes and tutoring, as well as books and other materials, but if online GMAT test prep works better for your schedule, your learning style, or your budget, there are two main options available on their website. Both the Live Online and Self-Paced options are great choices that come with a variety of different study materials.
Live Online classes are taught live by highly qualified teachers. When you take a Live Online GMAT Prep course, you will receive 18 hours of live, interactive instruction. These classes work similar to the way an in-person class would. You will be able to interact with your teacher, as well as the other students taking the class with you. This way you can ask questions or get clarification on anything you’re confused about. The class also comes with 34 hours of optional instruction from The GMAT Channel. Live instruction is available at all times of day from this channel and you can pick and choose which topics you would like to receive additional instruction in. You will also receive nine full-length practice exams, over 140 hours of instructional videos, the Adaptive Qbank plus 5,000 other practice questions, The Official Test Day Experience, two prep books (GMAT Premier: Course Book Edition and GMAT Pocket Reference), and an MBA admissions guide.
There is also a Live Online Plus option available. This comes with all the same instruction and materials as Live Online, plus three hours of one-on-one coaching to go over your practice exams, come up with a study plan, and get help with your MBA application process. You’ll also get GMAT Math Foundations which is a self-paced class with online workshops and test questions to help you with the math sections of the GMAT. There are typically many different classes offered throughout the year for both Live Online and Live Online Plus, at different times of day and different days of the week to give options to as many people as possible.
If you aren’t able to find a Live Online class to fit into your schedule, you may want to choose the Self-Paced classes. The Self-Paced option is designed to allow you to study on your own schedule and it also gives you access to your study materials for six months so you don’t have to worry about not having time to go through everything. You will be able to watch 14 hours of instructional videos as well as 30 hours of archived episodes from The GMAT Channel.
The Self-Paced option also comes with all the same study materials as the Live Online class, including Qbank, additional online instructional and practice videos, practice tests, and prep books. The only true difference between the two class formats is that one is live and one has pre-recorded instruction. You won’t miss out on helpful preparation materials by taking one class over the other. Self-Paced Plus comes with GMAT Math Foundations as well as over 30 hours of live access to The GMAT Channel.
Do you feel pretty comfortable with most sections of the GMAT but need some extra help with the math section? Maybe you’ve taken the test before and the math questions were what tripped you up and prevented you from achieving the score you wanted. GMAT Math Foundations is available on its own. The course goes over algebra, arithmetic, and geometry, all the foundations you will need to perform well with any math questions you come across. The class has instructional videos, online workshops, and over 400 practice questions.
If you don’t need a full GMAT prep class, there are other options you can choose to take practice tests or just watch a few videos for some extra help. These options are the Adaptive Qbank, Practice Pack, Study Pack, and Official Test Day Experience. All of these also come with both the Live Online and Self-Paced classes so you do not need to purchase them separately if you are already taking one of those class options.
The Adaptive Qbank creates custom quizzes from a pool of over 2,300 different test questions. It is designed to pick up on your strengths and weaknesses and create quizzes to suit your level while still offering a challenge. As your skills increase, Qbank will choose more difficult questions for your practice quizzes.
The Official Test Day Experience is a practice test that you take in an actual testing center. It is identical to the experience you will have when you take your actual GMAT exam. You will be timed the same way, take the test the same way, and be subject to all the same rules. This is a great way to see how you will do in a real testing environment and also to help ease exam anxiety by showing you exactly what to expect.
The Practice Pack contains four full-length computer-based practice tests. The Study Pack has eight full-length practice tests and 14 hours of instructional videos, as well as GMAT prep books. Both packs come with access to the Adaptive Qbank as well.
Get into the MBA Program of Your Dreams
Getting a high score on the GMAT isn’t going to guarantee your admission to your top choice of business schools. Nothing can do that. A high score will, however, give you a fighting chance. The admissions boards see multiple high-quality candidates with excellent GPAs and admissions essays, your score on the GMAT just may be the thing that sets you apart. If you don’t study, that’s not going to be a possibility. Online GMAT test prep is one way you can properly prepare for your GMAT test and get one step closer to acceptance from an MBA program.