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When should I take my first crack at the GMATs?

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When should I take my first crack at the GMATs? [#permalink] New post 05 Jul 2012, 16:44
First time poster here!
I am a Junior undergrad studying Management (concentration in accounting). Currently, I am talking to some finance companies about employment after I graduate in 2014 but I know that I will need to get my MBA eventually. I have yet to decide whether or not I would like to go straight into an MBA program from my undergrad program, or whether I should work for a few years; but eIther way I will need to take the GMAT and figure out which schools I should begin looking at/ applying to. My question is when should I take it? A few weeks ago I purchased the official guide and am pouring through that right now. It is highly unlikely that I will be ready to take the exam before the start of the new year, but does anyone have any advice for me on when I should take it or studying methods I should pursue??

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Re: When should I take my first crack at the GMATs? [#permalink] New post 05 Jul 2012, 19:55
Honestly... it's probably too early for you to start considering the GMAT. Most MBA students (full time) have between 2-6 years of work experience after undergrad. In fact, it is highly recommended at almost every MBA program around that you should have atleast a year or two of work experience. Some schools don't even take people with no experience. So the fact of the matter is that you are too far out. If you already have companies interested in you, I would recommend working hard to get the best internships and best full time job after school that you possibly can. This job will play a large role in what kind of MBA program you can get into.

I wouldn't recommend taking the GMAT any time soon. Your GMAT score is only good for 5 years, and even after 2-3 years your score becomes stale. The test changes over time, and its hard to know if old scores are still good reflections of how you would have done on the test.

Although the GMAT might not be the right decision right now (unless you're truly trying to go to a bschool right out of undergrad) you are still VERY smart to be looking so early. This give you LOTS of time to learn about the schools, what they look for, and improve your application. There is much more to the application then just the GMAT. In fact, the GMAT only makes up a small portion of the application. There is: Application essays, extra curricular activities, leadership experiences, GPA, work experience, Resume, etc... So what you should be doing is looking to maximize every area of the application you possibly can. Now, once you get a year or two out from actually wanting to apply to Bschool, then I would work towards the GMAT. Spend your limited time, resources, and effort towards other areas now, so you will have a super strong application in the future.

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Re: When should I take my first crack at the GMATs? [#permalink] New post 06 Jul 2012, 09:53
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Yes, it's always a smart idea to look into the GMAT earlier. It may be slightly early for you, but I'd say the sweet spot in terms of timing for situation is somewhere between graduation and the start of your first job. Right now, you should probably be focusing on solidifying internships and job recruiting.

You can reference this article on when to take the GMAT: http://www.gmatpill.com/gmat-prep-about ... ly-better/
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Re: When should I take my first crack at the GMATs? [#permalink] New post 06 Jul 2012, 11:18
According to the posted article, it sounds like I should wait to take it around the time that I graduate. But in the article that gmatpill posted, it also states that the ideal time to take the exam would also be during the summer between my Junior and Senior year. The reason I am so anxious about taking the GMATs early is because I would like to optimize my scores. I fear that if I do not take them sooner rather than later, I will loose some of my Quantitative Skills which I am already struggling with. Is there really any harm in taking it during my senior year? That way I would be able to hone in on what level schools I will be applying to. Not to mention, I would not have to study for a tough standardized test 3-5 years out of college. Do the prestigious MBA programs (Harvard, Stern, Sloan, Columbia) look down on someone applying to business school who may have taken the GMATs 4 years ago?
Re: When should I take my first crack at the GMATs?   [#permalink] 06 Jul 2012, 11:18
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