Not sure how to ace the GMAT Quant Section’s arithmetic topic? Don’t worry! You’re not alone. Most test-takers from a non-STEM background do find the GMAT quantitative reasoning section a challenge; however, the good news is that the test only expects you to know the basics of mathematical concepts such as Algebra, Geometry and Arithmetic. You are expected to apply your understanding of these topics to each question in the test.
In this article, we present a few arithmetic preparation tips for GMAT so you can enhance your practice and work towards your dream score.
What is the Arithmetic Section on the GMAT Quantitative Reasoning Section?
The branch of mathematics that deals with the study of numbers and number properties is called Arithmetic. Furthermore, it is a method or process of computation using different types of numbers (integers, fractions and whole numbers) and includes basic mathematical operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division using these numbers.
On the GMAT quantitative reasoning section, questions are based on topics such as Algebra, Proportion, and Geometry as well. Furthermore, since the GMAT is a computer-adaptive test, the difficulty level of each question increases or decreases based on your response to a question. However, most test-takers find the GMAT quant section a challenge due to the tricky nature of each question being presented. Moreover, although MBA graduates are not going to use any of these concepts on their job, learning basic mathematical concepts will help them perform their role in the most analytical manner since learning the concepts tested on the GMAT quantitative reasoning section enhance your critical thinking and problem-skills.
The quant section comprises 31 questions that need to be answered within 60 minutes. Hence, preparing for Arithmetic requires you to make quick calculations of numbers with the use of tips and tricks to save time.
Worried? Don’t be! The quant syllabus of the GMAT covers basic high-school-level mathematics and does not require you to be a pro or master anything like trigonometry or advanced calculus.
Here are Six Tips that Will Enhance Your GMAT Arithmetic Preparation
1. Review your basics
Understanding and remembering the basics is key to acing the GMAT. If you have a strong foundation of mathematical concepts, it becomes easy to solve questions within the short time allotted on the test. Realistically give yourself time to review the basics because it may be that you’ve been out of high school for a long time and may need time to revisit these topics again. Don’t try the shortcuts and tricks without having understood the fundamentals because you can risk the chance of confusing yourself.
2. Practice Quantitative questions from the practice sets
To learn the basics of the GMAT quant syllabus choose a guide where the basics are clearly and concisely explained – the GMAT official guide is a good starting point. By going through a guide that focuses on the basics, you will get a thorough idea of the questions and learn the important steps to solving a question. Furthermore, when you practice from the practice sets, you’ll come across a wide variety of questions to implement what you’ve learned. The right combination of learning and practising will have ensured that you thoroughly remember the concepts while attempting the questions from different difficulty levels.
3. Evaluate your practice test
Practice is the only solution to remembering and mastering the GMAT quant section! Hence, you should put your knowledge to the test by taking practice tests. Once you’ve taken the test, review the questions that you answered correctly or incorrectly by going through the explanations provided you understand what you did right and what you didn’t.
4. Identify your weak spots and work on them
It is very important to analyse your strengths and weaknesses. While your strengths affirm what you’ve been doing correctly, your weaker spots need to be addressed and strengthened. You can strengthen your weaknesses by practising and learning them from other more detailed sources such as the GMAT Quant or Verbal official guide which have questions and topics pertaining to only those sections of the GMAT.
5. Focus on accuracy
Since the GMAT penalises heavily for skipping a question, it is best to use calculated guesswork to be as accurate as possible on a difficult question on the GMAT Exam. Hence, if the test throws a challenging question at you and you feel you’re spending a lot of time over it, you should focus on answering as accurately as possible and not spend too much time trying to figure out the right answer.
6. Take mock tests regularly to gauge your improvement
The only way you can test yourself on aspects ranging from knowledge acquired to time management is to take a mock test. You should strategically take each mock test after completing a thorough practice and review session. It is essential to note that simply taking mock tests will not yield you results and will only exhaust the limited mock tests you have. Hence, make sure to take a mock test after each milestone.
There you go! Now you’re aware of a few arithmetic preparation tips for GMAT that you can rely on to enhance your performance and work towards your dream score.