A good GMAT score increases your chances of admission to your dream business school. However, achieving a high score in the GMAT exam requires proper practice and preparation. And, one of the best ways to prepare for the exam is by taking GMAT mock tests. So, how can these mock tests help you in your GMAT exam preparations? Read on to find out.
GMAT stands for Graduate Management Admission Test. GMAT is a computerized test that is computer-adaptive which means the test questions get harder or easier depending on your answer for the previous question.
The test’s adaptability and the vastness of the GMAT syllabus make it very difficult to clear this exam without proper planning. The GMAT syllabus comprises four sections — Verbal Reasoning (VR), Integrated Reasoning (IR), Quantitative Reasoning (QR), and Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA). Let’s take a brief look at the same.
- Analytical Writing Assessment – The AWA section of the GMAT consists of one essay writing task that has to be completed in 30 minutes. Here, you’ll be presented with an argument, and you are required to critique that. The argument topics could be anything related to the general interest. The score range is 0-6, with increments of 0.5.
- Quantitative Reasoning – The section measures your ability to solve mathematical problems using your logical and analytical skills. You will have 62 minutes to complete 31 questions from this section. These questions are of two types: Problem-solving and Data Sufficiency.
- Verbal Reasoning – GMAT Verbal Reasoning section assesses your ability to read, comprehend and critically analyze a given passage. You get 65 minutes to complete 36 multiple choice questions from this section. The question types asked in this section include Sentence Correction, Critical Reasoning, and Reading comprehension.
- Integrated Reasoning – Integrated Reasoning tests your ability to analyze data given in multiple formats (tables, graphs or texts) — and derive conclusions from them. You are required to use your critical thinking and logical reasoning skills to evaluate the data. You have a time limit of 30 minutes to answer 12 questions from this section. Four types of questions are asked — Multi-source Reasoning, Graphics Interpretation, Table Analysis, and Two-part Analysis.
Proper planning and preparation can only be fruitful if you have a way to test yourself about how well you are prepared mentally, physically, and educationally for the exam. And for this, the best solution is to keep practicing with free GMAT mock tests.
What are GMAT Mock Exams?
GMAT mocks are practice tests that are similar to the actual GMAT test paper. The questions asked in such tests are mostly based on the updated pattern and syllabus of the real GMAT exam. These tests are available in both online and offline formats. However, most GMAT aspirants like you opt for GMAT free mock tests online, as they are more flexible, convenient, and can be taken from the comfort of your home. Mock tests prepare you mentally and physically for the examination. Besides, the GMAT mock tests can assist you in your exam preparation and help improve your time management skills.
Now, you might be wondering how online GMAT mock tests can help you physically and mentally prepare for the exam? The following section will clear your doubts.
How Mock Tests Help You Prepare for the GMAT Examination?
Mock GMAT online tests help you prepare for the exam in more than one way.
- Mental preparation
Your performance in the GMAT examination depends a lot on time management. Every section has a fixed time limit within which you have to answer the questions asked in that specific section. If you fail to do so, that will result in negative marking. Hence, it is imperative that you answer every question asked in the GMAT exam. You have to follow several time management strategies to answer all these questions within the allotted time. The best way to learn time management strategies is by taking mock tests. As mentioned above, mock tests acquaint you with the types of questions asked and the syllabus. Having a clear understanding of the question types helps you manage your time during the exam.
- Physical preparation
Physical preparation is an aspect that often gets overlooked when preparing for an examination. GMAT is a difficult exam to crack. The vast syllabus, types of questions asked, the time limit — All these factors can make most of you nervous. Nervousness is a crucial hurdle to overcome when you are giving competitive exams such as GMAT. A nervous candidate is more prone to making mistakes. You can overcome this by taking up as many mock GMAT exams as possible. Proper practice using the mock tests help you face the exam with confidence, as you will be familiar with the questions asked, by the time you appear for the actual exam.
- Understanding your strengths and weaknesses
GMAT exam preparation relies a lot on understanding your strengths and weaknesses. A mock test can help you identify your strengths and weaknesses. For example, if you don’t know how well you will perform in the verbal section of the GMAT, taking the GMAT verbal mock test can help you with calculating possible scores for that section. Once you solve a couple of mocks, you will identify which section is your strength and which is your weakness. Mock tests will also help you find out which topics in a particular section are easier and which are difficult for you.
- Testing your exam strategy
A good exam strategy is integral to performing well in the exam. Your exam strategy has to be created based on your skills and understanding of the topics. You can plan and implement several strategies in Mock GMAT tests. You can check how each of your strategies works and use the best one during the actual exam. Mock tests can provide you with a chance to try different plans and strategize well for the exam day.
How Often Should You Take the GMAT Mock tests?
There are a lot of questions that you might ask yourselves as to how often you should take the GMAT mocks. One of the most important things to understand here is that there are no set rules for attempting the mock tests. However, as the proverb goes, “Too much of anything is good for nothing”. Here are some examples that will help you understand this.
- Candidate A
Candidate A is afraid of mock tests; He/she studies hard but does not focus on mock tests. The person only studies the topics from the syllabus to the best of their ability and prepares only for their main GMAT exam. After the exam, it was found that the candidate was not able to reach their goal score due to not having experience on how to give the exam.
- Candidate B
Candidate B focuses heavily on GMAT mock tests online, going as far as attempting mock tests on a weekly and sometimes a daily basis. After the examination, it has been found that the candidate has not secured their target score. This is due to the over dependence on mock tests and not spending enough time learning the concepts from the topics that are needed to get the desired score.
These two examples show that the proper strategy would be to maintain a balanced approach. Taking a mock test at the beginning of your GMAT preparations can give you a reality check as to where you stand in comparison to where you want to reach.
This will help you create your study plan and exam strategies accordingly. Having said that, following the study plan you have prepared is also important before taking another test. Mock tests are only good when you are taking them after doing the due preparations for them.
Different Types of Mock Test
Mock tests for GMAT come in different types. They are created for different purposes, and you need to utilize all of them to get the most out of their GMAT preparations. The different types of mock tests are:
- Practice Questions
Practice questions are good for you when you are in the learning phase. These questions help put the exam perspective on the topics you are studying. The questions help you in applying the knowledge that you are learning on the actual test-like questions.
- Sectional Tests
These tests are best when you are well-acquainted with a topic that you think you are weak at. This will help you understand the level of your preparation for that respective topic. It will also help you plan how to tackle this section further.
- Full Mock Tests
GMAT mock tests are a simulation of your actual exam paper. You must ensure to select the most appropriate and best GMAT mock test for your preparation. They are best when taken at the exact time slot of your actual GMAT examination as well. You need to consider other things regarding timing and be strict about not taking it easy just because it is a mock test.
Choosing the Right GMAT Mock Test
You get a lot of mock GMAT test free options — both offline and online — to choose from. But, how do you find the best one to choose? While choosing a mock test from the available options, you have to check whether it has the same format and standard of questions as the actual GMAT exam.
The best option is to attempt the mock test available on mba.com, the official website of GMAT. In addition to that, you will find unofficial tests on several other online platforms. In case you are confused as to which is the best coaching centre that offers mock tests and preparation materials at a budget-friendly price, CareerLabs is the option for you. You can enroll for a course in CareerLabs and get access to 500+ practice questions, diagnostic toolkit software, around five mock tests etc., all in one place.
GMAT preparation is no cakewalk. You have to devote ample time to prepare well for this competitive exam. Besides, having a clear understanding of syllabus and the question types are important, if you want to crack the GMAT exam with a stellar score. For this, the best way is to take GMAT mock tests. Mocks give you an overview of how the actual test will be. Hence, if you are planning to take the GMAT exam, start your preparation by taking a mock test. Good luck!
- Do GMAT Mock exams use the same scoring criteria as the GMAT?
Yes, the mock exams use the same scoring pattern as that of the GMAT exam. So this gives you an estimate of the score you are likely to get on your final exam with your current level of preparation. Then you can accordingly alter your preparation strategy to achieve your target score.
- Will all the sections of the GMAT exam be present in the mock exams as well?
Yes, the GMAT mock exam has the same structure as the GMAT exam and therefore they will contain all four sections. The order of the sections on the mock exams will also appear in the same format as the GMAT exam.
- Will the mock exams have the same time limit as the actual GMAT exam?
Yes, the mock exams will have the same time limit as the GMAT.