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# is the Pearson Vue Test tougher than ETS

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08 Apr 2006, 10:48
This is discouraging that the math section is harder on the actual gmat now. For ppl like me, who already struggle with math, it's not a good news. So how should we prepare for math now, since the math section is harder then OG 11? Do you think doing OG 11 and online challenges is enough?

My goal is to score above 650 and so far I am not confident that I'll score even 600. My test is scheduled for end of may, so I have about 1.5 months to prepare. I am frustrated, just not sure how to study. I have long hrs at work, so don't get enough time to study during weekdays, by the time I get home I am tired. And I feel like studying on the weekend is not enough. Another thing is that my concentration span is short, I can not focus on something for more then an hr or 2. Frustration
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08 Apr 2006, 20:20
It is inevitable that the GMAT will always continue to adapt, change, and get tougher as time passes. Simple laws of supply and demand will ensure that the test accurately weeds out those who are not serious about b-school. The only option we have is to study harder and push ourselves more than our predecessors did. In the end it will be worth it.

Shampoo, you might want to consider studying first thing in the morning before going to work. I have found that my mind is much fresher and hence reains more at such an early hour as opposed to trying to stay focused after midnight. Just a recommendation...
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Not any tougher [#permalink]

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20 Apr 2006, 07:19
Hello friends,

I just want to post that the math section, at least from my experience, is not tougher; I believe it is only different. I'm telling you I started really low at math from ETS and in my last test under PEARSON I scored 80% or 46. To me that score was beyond my expectations since I scored 40 at Kaplan CD, and 44,42 at GmatPrep.

I would say that the math is tricker as one of you said, but not more difficult. If you study the questions of gmatPrep software you would get the new pattern, and I believe in some instances is easier.

On my real test on april 06 I only got overwhelmed at the questions concerning sequences; I have not seen those not even in Kaplan.

Well It is just my opinion.
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24 Apr 2006, 09:42
GMATT73 wrote:
It is inevitable that the GMAT will always continue to adapt, change, and get tougher as time passes. Simple laws of supply and demand will ensure that the test accurately weeds out those who are not serious about b-school. The only option we have is to study harder and push ourselves more than our predecessors did. In the end it will be worth it.

This is misinformation. the GMAT is not necessarily getting tougher.
You can get statistics on the gmat from
http://www.gmac.com/gmac/VirtualLibrary ... 0%9305.htm

from 2000 to 2005 mean gmat score for men is the same at 541, and for all test takers it has only shifted 2 points.

The gmat score is a statistical measure of where you stand, where about 100 points is one standard deviation. How 'tough' it is matters very little. And if the test has been unfair in any year, the annual mean would reflect that. The statistics simply don't support your theory.

The gmat's purpose is not to 'weed' out candidates. The schools do that, so you can potentially argue that every year a higher score may be needed, but there is no validity in claiming that you need to study harder this year to get the same score as last year.
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27 Apr 2006, 06:29
forlorn wrote:
GMATT73 wrote:
It is inevitable that the GMAT will always continue to adapt, change, and get tougher as time passes. Simple laws of supply and demand will ensure that the test accurately weeds out those who are not serious about b-school. The only option we have is to study harder and push ourselves more than our predecessors did. In the end it will be worth it.

This is misinformation. the GMAT is not necessarily getting tougher.
You can get statistics on the gmat from
http://www.gmac.com/gmac/VirtualLibrary ... 0%9305.htm

from 2000 to 2005 mean gmat score for men is the same at 541, and for all test takers it has only shifted 2 points.

The gmat score is a statistical measure of where you stand, where about 100 points is one standard deviation. How 'tough' it is matters very little. And if the test has been unfair in any year, the annual mean would reflect that. The statistics simply don't support your theory.

The gmat's purpose is not to 'weed' out candidates. The schools do that, so you can potentially argue that every year a higher score may be needed, but there is no validity in claiming that you need to study harder this year to get the same score as last year.

Point taken, however there is a major flaw in the statistics that you cite: during the years 2000-2005, the GMAT was under the auspices of ETS, a now extinct administrator. I think if you go back to the beginning of this thread you will note that we are specifically referring to the 2006 version of the test, and the subsequent changes it has undergone under the dominion of PVue.

As for the test evolving and getting slightly more difficult over the years, why dont you try doing a statistical comparison between the pre-CAT GMAT scores of the mid 1990s to the CAT scores after 1997? I think you will discover that paper test scores were slightly higher thanks to easier test content, paper test-taking strategies, etc. If you have ever taken an ETS "retired paper test" then you will know exactly what I am talking about. I know several people, myself included, who can easily score over 700 on a old paper test, but cant reproduce the same performance on a CAT. Furthermore, from empirical observations on this site, countless members have reported a decrease in scores since Jan 1, 2006.

It is an undeniable fact that the GMAT has and will continue to get more difficult.
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27 Apr 2006, 07:26
I didnt take the ETS version - I did just write a PVue - and I have to say, I dont think its really harder. Its just different. The subjects they focus on have changed and people just need to adapt their study habits to match that. There are no review books out for the exams current content (that matches it exactly at least) so we are all at a small disadvantage. But I believe if you just practice practice practice then you will succeed - its really not that bad.

However I do agree that the test will become increasingly more difficult over the next few years as more people decide the MBA is for them.
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27 Apr 2006, 07:33
GMATT73 wrote:
It is an undeniable fact that the GMAT has and will continue to get more difficult.

Undeniable?
c'mon. With all due respect - you will have to do much better than that when you get to b-school.
You claim that your reasoning is from empirical evidence on this site. In order to make a sound judgement, you would need a healthy sample of test takers who have taken the test both before and after 1/1/06. Right now, there are 18,460 members of this site. Even if every one of them had taken both tests and reported a lower score from Vue, that is still less than 3% of all test takers. Quantitatively, this seems very presumptuous.

Qualitatively- what benefit would the GMAC have by making the test harder, without formally changing the tested objectives? The purpose of the test is for Business schools to be able to make a sound judgement on the abilities of a candidate, and the GMAT is supposed to be the leveling factor between candidates. The test isn't very leveling if you've got a pool of students that have all taken different tests. In fact, GMAC's entire business model depends on the fact that their tests are accurate and reliable (hence the word "standardized").
I'm also not sure if people understand what ETS and Pearson's role are in the whole thing. They simply administer the test. GMAC is soley in charge of test content and scoring algorithms. Companies like Pearson and ETS also administer many other tests for many other comanies. Why would anyone have any reason to beleive that the difficulty of the test has changed one bit with a different administrator?

I just think that this is hearsay, bordering on hysteria, that gets proagated throughout these forums.

I haven't taken the test myself, but I just don't see any good reason to beleive that the test is harder today than it was 4 months ago - without any official declaration.
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27 Apr 2006, 10:16
I took 2 ETS tests & one Perason Vue.
I scored Q39 in my first ETS & then Q41 in my second ETS.

After that I took Kaplan course & practised a lot on Quant.
And definiltely Kaplan Quant is tougher than OG.
I took the Pearson Vue after about 2 years of gap & scored Q42.

With the preparation I did with Kaplan, I was expecting atleast 3-4 points
of improvement over my Q41 score.

I did complete the Quant on time & didn't feel that it was tough while giving the test, but when I think about it now either I made stupid mistakes or in pearson vue scoring high is little tough.
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27 Apr 2006, 10:33
GMATT73 wrote:
forlorn wrote:

This is misinformation. the GMAT is not necessarily getting tougher.
You can get statistics on the gmat from
http://www.gmac.com/gmac/VirtualLibrary ... 0%9305.htm

from 2000 to 2005 mean gmat score for men is the same at 541, and for all test takers it has only shifted 2 points.

The gmat score is a statistical measure of where you stand, where about 100 points is one standard deviation. How 'tough' it is matters very little. And if the test has been unfair in any year, the annual mean would reflect that. The statistics simply don't support your theory.

The gmat's purpose is not to 'weed' out candidates. The schools do that, so you can potentially argue that every year a higher score may be needed, but there is no validity in claiming that you need to study harder this year to get the same score as last year.

Point taken, however there is a major flaw in the statistics that you cite: during the years 2000-2005, the GMAT was under the auspices of ETS, a now extinct administrator. I think if you go back to the beginning of this thread you will note that we are specifically referring to the 2006 version of the test, and the subsequent changes it has undergone under the dominion of PVue.

As for the test evolving and getting slightly more difficult over the years, why dont you try doing a statistical comparison between the pre-CAT GMAT scores of the mid 1990s to the CAT scores after 1997? I think you will discover that paper test scores were slightly higher thanks to easier test content, paper test-taking strategies, etc. If you have ever taken an ETS "retired paper test" then you will know exactly what I am talking about. I know several people, myself included, who can easily score over 700 on a old paper test, but cant reproduce the same performance on a CAT. Furthermore, from empirical observations on this site, countless members have reported a decrease in scores since Jan 1, 2006.

It is an undeniable fact that the GMAT has and will continue to get more difficult.

GMAT73, I took your advice and dug up the data for pre 90s at:
http://www.gmac.com/gmac/VirtualLibrary ... to1991.htm

the average gmat score back then was around 480-490 while the average today is in the 540 range.

I find your personal episodic evidence and 'undeniable' claims rather suspicious given that evidence. Since test scores have steadily increased in the past 20 years instead of decreased, it would be pretty bold to still hold on to your theory of the test having gotten harder as that would imply people were really a lot dumber and less prepared in the early 90s =)

You do have a valid point regarding the ETS and Pearson Vue changing of hands, but as previous posters have pointed out, Pearson would have much to lose if 2006's mean came out highly different from 2005 mean.

I would file the "gmat is getting harder" claim in the 'unlikely and unsupported by statistics' category rather than the "undeniable fact" category.
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27 Apr 2006, 12:04
OasisNYK wrote:
However I do agree that the test will become increasingly more difficult over the next few years as more people decide the MBA is for them.

There should be no cause and effect relationship between number of people taking GMAT and how difficult the test is.

In fact there should be no cause and effect relationship between number of people taking GMAT and how you will score on the GMAT. Gmat is a statistical score where about 100 points is one standard deviation. When you increase the population, what happens? Your bell curve gets actually more perfect. There is no shift in where a particular person lies, unless more 'smart' people decide the MBA is for them compared to in previous years.
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27 Apr 2006, 12:28
Here's some statistical data:
http://www.gmac.com/gmac/ResearchandTre ... idates.htm

Here's some info if you need to be hit in the head with a frying pan before you understand something:

http://www.gmac.com/gmac/TheGMAT/GMATSc ... 06FAQs.htm
(annotated below for the lazy lot of ya)
GMAC Website wrote:
Will GMATÂ® scores change as a result of the transition to new vendors?

The score scale will not change; GMATÂ® scores from tests taken in or after 2006 will be comparable to scores on exams taken before 2006.

GMAC Website wrote:
Will there be any differences between the tests delivered by the current vendor and the new vendors?

Other than the cosmetic differences mentioned above (the change in font and color, highlighted sections in Reading Comprehension questions, and the introduction of the noteboards), the test will not change.

GMAC Website wrote:
Do test takers need to prepare differently for the GMATÂ® exam in or after 2006?

Because this is the same test with the same score scale, test takers can use the same materials they would have used for 2005.
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27 Apr 2006, 19:45
forlorn wrote:
GMATT73 wrote:
forlorn wrote:

This is misinformation. the GMAT is not necessarily getting tougher.
You can get statistics on the gmat from
http://www.gmac.com/gmac/VirtualLibrary ... 0%9305.htm

from 2000 to 2005 mean gmat score for men is the same at 541, and for all test takers it has only shifted 2 points.

The gmat score is a statistical measure of where you stand, where about 100 points is one standard deviation. How 'tough' it is matters very little. And if the test has been unfair in any year, the annual mean would reflect that. The statistics simply don't support your theory.

The gmat's purpose is not to 'weed' out candidates. The schools do that, so you can potentially argue that every year a higher score may be needed, but there is no validity in claiming that you need to study harder this year to get the same score as last year.

Point taken, however there is a major flaw in the statistics that you cite: during the years 2000-2005, the GMAT was under the auspices of ETS, a now extinct administrator. I think if you go back to the beginning of this thread you will note that we are specifically referring to the 2006 version of the test, and the subsequent changes it has undergone under the dominion of PVue.

As for the test evolving and getting slightly more difficult over the years, why dont you try doing a statistical comparison between the pre-CAT GMAT scores of the mid 1990s to the CAT scores after 1997? I think you will discover that paper test scores were slightly higher thanks to easier test content, paper test-taking strategies, etc. If you have ever taken an ETS "retired paper test" then you will know exactly what I am talking about. I know several people, myself included, who can easily score over 700 on a old paper test, but cant reproduce the same performance on a CAT. Furthermore, from empirical observations on this site, countless members have reported a decrease in scores since Jan 1, 2006.

It is an undeniable fact that the GMAT has and will continue to get more difficult.

GMAT73, I took your advice and dug up the data for pre 90s at:
http://www.gmac.com/gmac/VirtualLibrary ... to1991.htm

the average gmat score back then was around 480-490 while the average today is in the 540 range.

I find your personal episodic evidence and 'undeniable' claims rather suspicious given that evidence. Since test scores have steadily increased in the past 20 years instead of decreased, it would be pretty bold to still hold on to your theory of the test having gotten harder as that would imply people were really a lot dumber and less prepared in the early 90s =)

You do have a valid point regarding the ETS and Pearson Vue changing of hands, but as previous posters have pointed out, Pearson would have much to lose if 2006's mean came out highly different from 2005 mean.

I would file the "gmat is getting harder" claim in the 'unlikely and unsupported by statistics' category rather than the "undeniable fact" category.

I guess its settled then. Whatever the GMAC publishes must be true, right? Still, as someone who has taken both versions of the test, I am convinced that the latter has become more difficult. But then again, statistics, rather than personal opinion, should finalize any and all claims.

I guess well have to wait and see the GMAC 2006 stats...
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02 May 2006, 21:22
GMATT73 wrote:

Shampoo, you might want to consider studying first thing in the morning before going to work. I have found that my mind is much fresher and hence reains more at such an early hour as opposed to trying to stay focused after midnight. Just a recommendation...

Thanks GMATT73, that'a a good advise, it really is hard to focus at night when you are tired and sleepy.
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Where can I find ETS Software? [#permalink]

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04 May 2006, 13:55
All-
Maybe this is an easy issue, but I was wondering if anyone could point me in the right direction to find the ETS Software? I would like to take a practice CAT on it, but all I have is the GMATPrep that automatically comes when you register.

Any help would be greatly appreciate,
Jeff
Where can I find ETS Software?   [#permalink] 04 May 2006, 13:55

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