While there may not necessarily be a ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution to how long you should take to prepare for the GMAT, studying regularly and consistently for a fixed number of hours in a day can help you improve your scores. A 1-month or 3-months study plan can often be too hectic and way less time to prepare for the various sections of the test. However, a GMAT study plan for 6-months before the exam is generally recommended by experts, as it gives you sufficient time to prepare, without weighing heavily on other important activities including profile building and academics. This article will guide you through the process of efficiently preparing for the GMAT over the course of 6 months.

The GMAT is a standardized computer-adaptive exam, which is a common requirement for applications to graduate management programs at most business schools, all over the world. The GMAT is specifically designed to test your analytical and critical thinking skills, and your ability to solve problems under time pressure.  Since GMAT is a skill-based test, rather than a memory-based one, developing these skills requires months of dedicated effort, in order to achieve the best results. Hence, 6 months provide you with enough time to learn and understand new concepts and put them to practice in mock tests to gauge your progress, as well as assess suitable strategies for yourself.

Who is this 6-months GMAT Study Plan Suitable for?

The 6-month Study Plan is ideally suitable for you if:

  • you are not familiar with all the required concepts and feel the need to learn right from the basics
  • you have a well-planned admissions’ calendar for keeping track of impending application deadlines. Investing time in creating such a calender ensures that you are aware of your application deadlines without having to worry about potentially losing out on an academic year
  • you are an undergraduate student who has to simultaneously focus on academics and profile building
  • you are a  working professional, juggling work and personal commitments

If you are a student, you usually have a lot to do during the preparation and application phase. And, if you are a working professional with 5-8 years of work experience, you may often find it difficult to hit the books again and adhere to a regular study schedule. So, this plan is ideal for both. 

6-month GMAT Study Plan

This 200-hour plan will give you plenty of time to improve your GMAT score, while still leaving you with enough time to manage your work, school, and other activities and obligations. Moreover, the 6-month period study plan works well for you if you  are willing to devote the time to study and want to improve  your  final score. 

Given below is a 6-months GMAT study plan table for you. 

  Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4
Month1Understand the GMAT exam
Familiarize yourself with the  format and structure of the GMAT exam.(2 hrs)
Take Mock Tests Take  mock tests and assess your scores to know your strengths and weaknesses.(4 hrs)

Build Your Quant FoundationLearn about the format and question types of the GMAT Quantitative section (2 hrs)Find out  GMAT Quant strategies and tips.(3 hrs)

Build Your Verbal Foundation Get acquainted with the Verbal  section format and question types. (2 hrs)Build GMAT Reading Principles knowledge.(3 hrs)Learn Sentence Correction concepts. (3 hrs)Work on your  Grammar fluency. (1 hrs)
Quant Review
Build Algebra knowledge.(3 hrs)Brush up on your basic Geometry knowledge.(3 hrs)Understand the concept of  Word Problems(3 hrs)
Verbal Review
Strengthen your Reading Comprehension knowledge. (4 hrs)Learn Critical Reasoning concepts(4 hrs)
Quant Review
Build Number Properties knowledge.(3 hrs)Learn the concept of Sets.(3 hrs)Practice advanced Quant skills.(2 hrs)Improve fluency with the help of flash cards. (1 hrs)
Take a Mock Test and Review
Assess your weaker areas by attempting the mock tests and analysing the scores. (6 hrs)
Quant Review
Practice Data Sufficiency questions by solving sample papers.
(4 hrs)Solve Problem-solving questions. (4 hrs)
Verbal Review
Practice the types of questions asked in the Verbal Reasoning section. (8 hrs)

Verbal and Quant Review
Review your mock test results and work on the  Verbal and Quant question types that you are weaker at. 
(8 hrs)

Take a Mock Test and Review
Attempt mock tests and assess your performance to figure out the weaker areas you need to work on.
(5 hrs)
Month4AWA Review
Review AWA strategies.
(2 hrs)Practice AWA prompts. (4 hrs)

IR Review
Spend time to find out IR strategies.
(2 hrs)Practice IR questions. (4 hrs)

Verbal and Quant Review
Solve difficult Verbal and Quant question types based on your latest mock test results. (8 hrs)

Take a Mock Test and Review
Take a mock test and review the scores to figure out areas that still need work.
(5 hrs)
Review Quant Concepts as needed
Concentrate on Quant topics that you are weaker at — based on your mock test scores. (6 hrs)

Review Verbal Concepts as needed
Focus more on the  Verbal topics that you are struggling with— based on your mock tests. (6 hrs)
Take GMAT DiagnosticTest and evaluate the scores
Take a practice test and review the scores to figure out areas you need to work on. (5 hrs)
Review IR and AWA Concepts as needed
Work on the pending topics (if any) from IR and AWA section (5 hrs)

Review Quant Concepts as needed
Review and practice questions from Quant topics that you are struggling with —based on your mock tests. (6 hrs)
Review Verbal Concepts as needed 
Assess the verbal topics you find difficult and practice those questions (6 hrs)
Take a Mock Test and Review
Attempt mock tests and review results to know if you still need to work on any subject areas. . (5 hrs)
Light Prep and Review
Go through the topics you’ve learnt or solve a sample question paper. Get enough rest and nutrition before the test day. (4 hrs)

This plan may not be the same for each one of you, as you may have different schedules and work commitments. Besides, the amount of effort and preparation that you will require depends on various factors, including your target score, existing schedule, grasp over various concepts, and your strengths and weaknesses. Thus, you may tweak the plan as per your own requirements, so that it is better suited to your specific needs, and  existing weekly schedules.

So, if you intend to take the GMAT exam, you should allot 1  to 2 hours every day  to learn the concepts and practice mock tests. You would need to incorporate this preparation time into your daily schedule, without letting it affect other important activities and commitments. Hence, this is where a smart study plan works for achieving the best score.

While the path to a good GMAT score may seem long and intimidating, you do not have to cover it alone. At CareerLabs, we would be glad to help you with your preparation with our GMAT Prep programs. Nearly any challenge that you face is surmountable, and we are here to take the journey with you and help you move one step closer to your dream business schools.


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