Today’s post comes from Manhattan Review China, a well-known provider of test prep and MBA Admissions Consulting in Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, and Shenzhen for Top Business Schools.
Congratulations on your decision to get an MBA! Now it’s essential to know how the one predictor of your academic performance prepares you for business school. The GMAT is a standardized test that more than 5,000 business schools worldwide use to guarantee high caliber applicants are admitted to their MBA programs. In the end, it’s those applicants who will ultimately enrich and enhance the classroom experience.
More specifically, advisors at Manhattan Review have composed an outline that will offer insight into precisely how the GMAT prepares you for business school, and beyond:
Nothing is more important in business than communication. In business school, you’ll be writing enormous amounts of essays, papers, emails, etc. Knowing proper grammar, syntax and punctuation is going to make you excel at a rate you’ve never dreamed possible. Once you’ve brushed up on these skills before taking the GMAT, you’ll be way ahead of the game. Only then will you have the confidence in school and in your career to write anything — whether it’s a business letter or a proposal without having someone else look over your work.
The Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) part of the GMAT measures your ability to think critically and to clearly communicate ideas. There is a 30-minute essay, which is basically an analysis of an argument. The topic of the argument is usually one of general interest related to business or an array of other subject matters. You are not expected to have knowledge of the topic. What is expected of you, however, is an analysis of the reasoning behind the argument.
In business school, especially in case-method classes, you will only have a few seconds to come up with a coherent point and communicate it clearly.
Skimming is Good
In the first semester at business school, you’ll be given volumes of material to read. Let’s face it, you will not have time to read every word! The GMAT reading comprehension section is set up to give you very little time to get a great score. So you have to skim.
This is not an easy skill to master, especially for overachievers who have trained themselves to read every word for careful analysis. You’ll have to learn the technique of forcing yourself not to pay attention to every word. As a future business leader, this is an excellent skill because you’ll know how to ignore extraneous information that’s, nine times out of ten, meaningless. Plus the higher up the ladder you go in your career, the less time you’ll have to grasp concepts. So learn to skim.
In business school or any management program, you’re required to listen to your classmates’ arguments and analyze their logic. What assumptions lie behind their arguments? It’s imperative that you know the assumptions behind an argument before you can decide whether you agree or disagree. What’s more, as a future entrepreneur, you’ll be analyzing logic every day, especially the competition’s logic in your attempts to place your company be one step ahead in the field.
At Manhattan Review, we get a great deal of negative reactions to this portion of the GMAT. Our applicants complain, “…we are so used to calculators, computers, Excel, etc. why do we have to take a test without these helpful tools?” Being able to do a little mental math will make a big difference both in business school and in the business world.
Just think, for a moment, how impressed you are when someone has this skill. Then think how impressed your colleagues and clients will be when you’re able to do a little math without a calculator! One applicant recently admitted, “…I believe learning how to do mental math without my calculator gave me lots of practice for the GMAT and it was so needed because I got lazy relying on calculators for so many years!”
For almost 60 years the GMAT has been the benchmark for measuring basic verbal, mathematical, reasoning, and analytical writing skills. For you, the GMAT zeroes in on your strengths and weaknesses. Further, there is no other exam that allows you to showcase the skills that matter most in the business school classroom and in your career.
We recommend that you attend our free interactive MBA Admissions Webinars where you gain lots of further useful insight into the MBA Admissions process from our consultants who have worked on the other side of the table and evaluated candidates for top business schools. Please call +1-800-246-4600 or +1-212-316-2000 to arrange a free business school admissions consultation. Good luck with your conquest for an MBA!