The post UVA’s GMAT Score (Darden School of Business) appeared first on Magoosh GMAT Blog.

]]>The University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business is a leading business graduate program. That means that the GMAT score for University of Virginia is competitive. Admissions will not be easy. But for strong students, UVA’s business programs offer a variety of choices, but all focus on the same high quality core curriculum.

The Darden School offers three different MBA programs: the standard MBA, the Executive MBA, and the Global Executive MBA.

What makes these three options unique? In some sense, what they have in common is what makes Darden’s offerings unique. The three programs all use the same exact core curriculum, which is completed in the first four terms of the first year of each program.

This core curriculum is taught using case studies, simulations, and experiential exercises. It includes a variety of different core skills, in management, accounting, marketing, and analysis. That’s why your GMAT score for University of Virginia is so important: you’ll need to arrive on campus with strong quantitative and logical thinking skills to navigate the core curriculum.

If the core curriculum of UVA’s programs are identical, what makes the three different MBA options unique?

The standard MBA is for younger students who are earlier in their career. They typically arrive on campus with only 4 years of work experience. The program is full-time, and students are not expected to hold a job concurrently (though a summer internship is required). Most students spend their 21 months in Charlottesville, VA, though study abroad options are available.

The Executive MBA and the Global Executive MBA, while being the same length (21 months) as the standard MBA, differ in the type of student they attract. In these two programs, students typically have closer to 10 years of quality work experience. They’re highly competent executives in their own right. The programs only require sporadic residency in Charlottesville, and many courses incorporate distance learning. The Global Executive option incorporates residences around the world as a requirement — in China, Europe, India, Brazil, and elsewhere. It’s the ideal program for executives with international experience and ambitions.

Besides its unique array of programs, Darden also distinguishes itself in its size. While some graduate business schools can have thousands of students, Darden has less than 350. That allows a great opportunity to get to know classmates one-on-one, and utilize day-to-day networking to the fullest. The program is also known for a large military contingent, with slightly less than 10% of students having served in the military. Military leadership classes are available.

The typical GMAT score for University of Virginia’s Darden School varies by program. The most competitive, and the largest, program is the standard MBA program. Executive and Global Executive programs are much smaller, and also feature slightly lower average GMAT scores.

According to UVA itself, the typical GMAT score for University of Virginia’s Darden School is as follows:

- MBA program: 706 (average)
- Executive MBA: 570 – 720 (middle 80%)
- Global Executive MBA: 540 – 680 (middle 80%)

It’s important to note, though, that a lower GMAT score for the Executive program is compensated for by other admissions factors. Those programs typically admit students with between 10 and 13 years of quality work experience. The MBA program, on the other hand, typically takes students with less than half that amount, at only 4 years. Further, the Executive programs also require sponsorship and consent from a company, since those students will continue working full-time while being enrolled in the program.

According to U.S. News and World Report, the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business is ranked as the 11th best MBA program in the country. But some rankings place the Darden School even higher. The Economist, for example, places the Darden School as the second best MBA program, second only to the University of Chicago. Impressive!

Since the program is so highly regarded, it’s no surprise that GMAT scores for University of Virginia are high. Getting into a top-ranked program isn’t easy.

If you’re seeking a small but highly ranked MBA program, then the University of Virginia might be perfect for you. While the expected GMAT score for University of Virginia is high, if you can meet the standards, then you’ll enjoy close contact with your peers in a small program with a strong core curriculum. You’ll also enjoy numerous opportunities for international engagement. Career opportunities after UVA are numerous, so you’ll definitely get your money’s worth if you choose to enroll at Darden!

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]]>You did it- you got the interview! You found the perfect attire for making a strong first impression. You’ve stayed up late researching every piece of information on the company you can find. And you’ve practiced your answers to the most common interview questions at least one hundred times. Then the big day comes….and you completely blow it.

Interviews are high pressure situations, and no matter how much we prepare, sometimes they just don’t go well. We get stuck in traffic causing us to be late, our nerves overtake us and we freeze on a question, or we just don’t connect with the interviewer.

There are so many things that can go wrong during an interview. But the good news is that, most of the time, not all is lost! Here are some of the most common mistakes made and how you can recover from them.

This is definitely not an ideal way to start off an interview. But if handled correctly, it’s absolutely a mistake you can recover from. To avoid this in the first place, be sure to plan your route ahead of time and give yourself a little extra time on the big day in case the unexpected happens.

But even the best laid plans can’t always get us there in time. The best way to handle being late is to be honest about what happened. Acknowledge it right off the bat. Apologize for it and take responsibility, even if you feel the situation was out of your control. But be sure to not turn it into an excuse.

Use this opportunity to demonstrate ownership to the hiring manager. It’s a chance to prove that you can handle stressful and less-than-ideal situations gracefully, accept your mistakes, and put your best foot forward to turn it around.

Preparation is the key to interview success. When a candidate comes in unprepared to answer questions surrounding an opportunity, it’s a signal to the hiring manager that they aren’t truly interested in the job or perhaps aren’t even qualified.

Interview preparation should go beyond a simple google search and a glance at the company website. Time should be set aside to investigate company culture, understand the organization’s mission and values, catch up on recent news articles and press releases, and understand the job description like the back of your own hand.

But even after hours of in-depth preparation, it’s still possible to get an interview question that completely throws you off. Sometimes this is even done on purpose.

When this happens to you, the key is to stay calm and to not panic. If you get a question you’re not prepared to answer, simply ask if you can have a moment to think it through. To buy yourself some extra time, you can always ask to have the question repeated or you can ask clarifying questions. This is a great way to give the hiring manager insight into your thought process while gaining additional information that you can use to formulate your answer.

If you don’t manage to pull it together and leave the interview feeling like you missed an opportunity on a question, don’t give up yet! Follow up thank you notes are a great place to provide additional answers and a wonderful way to show the hiring manager that you’re passionate about the role and that you care about making a great impression.

Of all the mistakes made during interviews, rambling may just be the most common. It’s a habit for many people, especially during stressful situations.

Practicing your answers in the days leading up to your interview can help with this. But what if, after all that practice, your nerves still get the best of you?

The first step is to learn to recognize the signs that you’re beginning to ramble. Does your interviewer seem bored? Is your mouth a little dry from talking too much? Have you lost your train of thought? These are all signs that you’re not getting to the point quickly enough.

A good rule of thumb is that it should take you no longer than two minutes to provide a solid answer to an interview question. To ensure that you’re keeping your answers concise, be sure to practice them ahead of time, using a watch to track how long each response takes.

If you recognize that you’ve begun to ramble once you’re in the interview, don’t be afraid to stop yourself. Apologize that you’re a little nervous and that you seemed to have gotten off track. Take a deep breath, ask for a moment to gather your thoughts if you need it, and continue on with a straightforward and concise answer. Your interviewer will appreciate the fact that you stopped yourself to provide clarity.

It’s completely normal to feel nervous during an interview. So there’s nothing wrong with walking into one a little jittery. But it can become a problem if your nerves completely take over, preventing you from understanding questions and providing clear answers.

The best thing you can do to avoid this is to prepare for the interview beforehand. Taking the time to practice tough questions and to plan a way to demonstrate your skills can minimize nerves. If you feel your heart starting to beat a little faster and your palms getting a little sweaty, the first step is to just simply take a few deep breaths.

The next thing is to recognize that the interviewer knows exactly how you feel. Don’t forget that they’ve been in your shoes before, interviewing with this same company! Try breaking the ice with them by having a casual conversation about their weekend plans or even about the weather. This is a great way to get things started before you dive into the interview itself.

If you’re still nervous after this initial chat, that’s okay too. Hiring managers actually appreciate when candidates are jittery because it demonstrates a passion for the role. Just don’t let it get in the way of providing strong answers.

Interview mistakes are very common and perfectly normal. And most can be recovered from. In fact, you may be surprised to learn that most hiring managers are perfectly willing to look past many of these errors listed here. But every once in awhile, an interview gone wrong just can’t be turned around and you have to move on.

But even if you can’t get a hiring manager to overlook your mistakes, there are several things you can do to help you do better next time.

Take time to reflect on the experience, focusing not only on what went wrong but also on what went right. Recognize what you did well and where you were able to successfully demonstrate your strengths. Think through the questions you struggled with. Now that you aren’t in a high pressure situation, how would you answer them? This is a great way to help you prepare yourself for next time.

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]]>Cornell’s Johnson School distinguishes itself from other leading business schools because of its small and close-knit community. With 59 full-time faculty members and about 275 MBA students, the program is small compared to its peers, which often have over 1,000 students.

The Johnson School is located in Sage Hall, where students will spend a majority of their business school time. But students at Johnson also have access to the larger Cornell University community, which allows them to interface with experts across multiple fields. The Johnson School is also renowned for its performance learning concept, which allows first year students to integrate course work with field experience across one semester.

Cornell’s Johnson School offers a wide variety of academic programs, and not all of them are located in Ithaca, NY. So, if you’d prefer New York City to Ithaca’s pastoral rolling hills, then you’ll be happy to know that there are options for you!

The two-year MBA, though, is located in Ithaca. The MBA program does not use a standard curriculum. If you’re more interested in working than academic coursework, then the Johnson School might be right for you. Your first year will not be occupied entirely with standard core coursework. At Cornell, core courses finish after the first semester, with the second semester diving right into performance learning, where field work is integrated with course work. The second year is spent primarily on concentration electives.

For students with more specific interests or more advanced qualifications, Johnson offers a tech-focused MBA, a healthcare-focused MBA, and a PhD program. It even offers the world’s only program that is part-time and conducted dually in both English and Mandarin Chinese, through a partnership with Tsinghua University.

There’s little doubt: the Johnson School is a top business program. Forbes has placed the Johnson School as the 10th best MBA program in the United States. In terms of worldwide rankings, The Financial Times ranked Johnson as number 27.

As part of Cornell University, the Johnson School is an Ivy League business program. Irrespective of the MBA program’s prestige, there’s no question that Cornell is a leading research institution worldwide. By going to Johnson, you’ll have the opportunity to interact with researchers and students from other parts of campus. You will definitely benefit from the exciting research that happens across Cornell.

Because the Johnson School is well-regarded, it comes with difficult admissions prospects, including high Cornell GMAT scores. For the class of 2018, the average Cornell GMAT score was 700, with an average GPA of 3.39. On average, students also arrived on campus with 5 years of work experience behind them.

Official acceptance rates are hard to come by. The Johnson School itself says that, overall, it admitted around 12% of applicants. But that includes PhD students and all other programs. Online reports suggest that the acceptance rate for the two-year MBA program is closer to 22%.

If you’re looking for an intimate graduate program in a rural college town, then the Johnson School might be perfect for you. Keep in mind, though, the competition will be fierce: Cornell GMAT scores are high, and acceptance rates are low. If you are admitted, though, you are sure to benefit from a world-class education!

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]]>The post GMAT Math: How to Divide by a Square Root appeared first on Magoosh GMAT Blog.

]]>1. In the equation above, x =

2. Triangle ABC is an equilateral triangle with an altitude of 6. What is its area?

3. In the equation above, x =

The second one throws in a little geometry. You may want to review the properties of the 30-60-90 Triangle and the Equilateral Triangle if those are unfamiliar. The first one is just straightforward arithmetic. The third is quite hard. For any of these, it may well be that, even if you did all your multiplication and division correctly, you wound up with an answers of the form — something divided by the square root of something — and you are left wondering: why doesn’t this answer even appear among the answer choices? If this has you befuddled, you have found exactly the right post.

When we first met fractions, in our tender prepubescence, both the numerators and denominators were nice easy positive integers. As we now understand, any kind of real number, any number on the entire number line, can appear in the numerator or denominator of a fraction. Among other things, radicals —- that is, square-root expressions —- can appear in either the numerator or denominator. There’s no particular issue if we have the square-root in a numerator. For example,

is a perfectly good fraction. In fact, those of you who ever took trigonometry might even recognize this special fraction. Suppose, though, we have a square root in the denominator: what then? Let’s take the reciprocal of this fraction.

This is no longer a perfectly good fraction. Mathematically, this is a fraction “in poor taste”, because we are dividing by a square-root. This fraction is crying out for some kind of simplification. How do we simplify this?

By standard mathematical convention, a convention the GMAT follows, we don’t leave square-roots in the denominator of a fraction. If a square-root appears in the denominator of a fraction, we follow a procedure called **rationalizing the denominator**.

We know that any square root times itself equals a positive integer. Thus, if we multiplied a denominator of the square root of 3 by itself, it would be 3, no longer a radical. The trouble is —- we can’t go around multiplying the denominator of fractions by something, leaving the numerator alone, and expect the fraction to maintain its value. BUT, remember the time-honored fraction trick — we can always multiply a fraction by A/A, by something over itself, because the new fraction would equal 1, and multiplying by 1 does not change the value of anything.

Thus, to simplify a fraction with the square root of 3 in the denominator, we multiply by the square root of 3 over the square root of 3!

That last expression is numerically equal to the first expression, but unlike the first, it is now in mathematical “good taste”, because there’s no square root in the denominator. The denominator has been rationalized (that is to say, the fraction is now a rational number).

Sometimes, some canceling occurs between the number in the original numerator and the whole number that results from rationalizing the denominator. Consider the following example:

That pattern of canceling in the simplification process may give you some insight into practice problem #1 above.

This is the next level of complexity when it comes to dividing by square roots. Suppose we are dividing a number by an expression that involves adding or subtracting a square root. For example, consider this fraction:

This is a fraction in need of rationalization. BUT, if we just multiply the denominator by itself, that WILL NOT eliminate the square root — rather, it will simply create a more complicated expression involving a square root. Instead, we use the difference of two squares formula, = (a + b)(a – b). Factors of the form (a + b) and (a – b) are called **conjugates** of one another. When we have (number + square root) in the denominator, we create the conjugate of the denominator by changing the addition sign to a subtraction sign, and then multiply both the numerator and the denominator *by the conjugate of the denominator*. In the example above, the denominator is three minus the square root of two. The conjugate of the denominator would be three ** plus** the square root of two. In order to rationalize the denominator, we multiply both the numerator and denominator by this conjugate.

Notice that the multiplication in the denominator resulted in a “differences of two squares” simplification that cleared the square roots from the denominator. That final term is a fully rationalized and fully simplified version of the original.

Having read these posts about dividing by square roots, you may want to give the three practice questions at the top of this article another try, before reading the explanations below. If you have any questions on dividing by square roots or the explanations below, please ask them in the comments sections! And good luck conquering these during your GMAT!

1) To solve for x, we will begin by cross-multiplying. Notice that

because, in general, we can multiply and divide through radicals.

Cross-multiplying, we get

You may well have found this and wondered why it’s not listed as an answer. This is numerically equal to the correct answer, but of course, as this post explains, this form is not rationalized. We need to rationalize the denominator.

Answer = **(D)**

2) We know the height of ABC and we need to find the base. Well, altitude BD divides triangle ABC into two 30-60-90 triangles. From the proportions in a 30-60-90 triangle, we know:

Now, my predilection would be to rationalize the denominator right away.

Now, AB is simplified. We know AB = AC, because the ABC is equilateral, so we have our base.

Answer = **(C)**

3) We start by dividing by the expression in parentheses to isolate x.

Of course, this form does not appear among the answer choices. Again, we need to rationalize the denominator, and this case is a little trickier because we have addition in the denominator along with the square root. Here we need to find the conjugate of the denominator —- changing the plus sign to a minus sign — and then multiply the numerator and denominator by this conjugate. This will result in —-

Answer = **(A)**

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]]>

1) Let abcd be a general four-digit number and all the digits are non-zero. How many four-digits numbers abcd exist such that the four digits are all distinct and such that a + b + c = d?

(A) 6

(B) 7

(C) 24

(D) 36

(E) 42

2) Let abcd be a general four-digit number. How many odd four-digits numbers abcd exist such that the four digits are all distinct, no digit is zero, and the product of a and b is the two digit number cd?

(A) 4

(B) 6

(C) 12

(D) 24

(E) 36

3) There are 500 cars on a sales lot, all of which have either two doors or four doors. There are 165 two-door cars on the lot. There are 120 four-door cars that have a back-up camera. Eighteen percent of all the cars with back-up cameras have standard transmission. If 40% of all the cars with both back-up cameras and standard transmission are two-door cars, how many four-door cars have both back-up cameras and standard transmission?

(A) 18

(B) 27

(C) 36

(D) 45

(E) 54

4) At Mnemosyne Middle School, there are 700 students: all the students are boys or girls in the 4^{th} or 5^{th} grade. There are 320 students in the 4^{th} grade, and there are 210 girls in the 5^{th} grade. Fifty percent of the 5^{th} graders and 40% of the 4^{th} graders take Mandarin Chinese. Ninety 5^{th} grade boys do not take Mandarin Chinese. The number of 4^{th} grade girls taking Mandarin Chinese is less than half of the number of 5^{th} grade girls taking Mandarin Chinese. Which of the following could be the number of 4^{th} grade boys in Mandarin Chinese?

(A) 10

(B) 40

(C) 70

(D) 100

(E) 130

5) A hundred identical cubic boxes are currently arranged in four cubes: a single cubic box, a 2 x 2 x 2 cube, a 3 x 3 x 3 cube, and a 4 x 4 x 4 cube. These four are not touching each other. All outward faces are painted and all inward faces are not painted. These four cubes are going to be dismantled and reassembled as a flat 10 x 10 square. The top and all the edges of this 10 x 10 square must be painted, but there is no requirement for paint on the bottom. How many individual faces will have to be painted to accommodate the requirements of this new design?

(A) 0

(B) 5

(C) 9

(D) 16

(E) 27

6) Twelve points are spaced evenly around a circle, lettered from A to L. Let N be the total number of isosceles triangles, including equilateral triangles, that can be constructed from three of these points. A different orientation of the same lengths counts as a different triangle, because a different combination of points form the vertices. What is the value of N?

(A) 48

(B) 52

(C) 60

(D) 72

(E) 120

7) Theresa is a basketball player practicing her free throws. On her first free throw, she has a 60% chance of making the basket. If she has just made a basket on her previous throw, she has a 80% of making the next basket. If she has just failed to make a basket on her previous throw, she has a 40% of making the next basket. What is the probability that, in five throws, she will make at least four baskets?

8) Suppose a “Secret Pair” number is a four-digit number in which two adjacent digits are equal and the other two digits are not equal to either one of that pair or each other. For example, 2209 and 1600 are “Secret Pair” numbers, but 1333 or 2552 are not. How many “Secret Pair” numbers are there?

(A) 720

(B) 1440

(C) 1800

(D) 1944

(E) 2160

9) In the coordinate plane, a circle with its center on the negative x-axis has a radius of 12 units, and passes through (0, 6) and (0, – 6). What is the area of the part of this circle in the first quadrant?

10) In the coordinate plane, line L passes above the points (50, 70) and (100, 89) but below the point (80, 84). Which of the following could be the slope of line L?

(A) 0

(B) 1/2

(C) 1/4

(D) 2/5

(E) 6/7

11) At the beginning of the year, an item had a price of A. At the end of January, the price was increased by 60%. At the end of February, the new price was decreased by 60%. At the end of March, the new price was increased by 60%. At the end of April, the new price was decreased by 60%. On May 1^{st}, the final price was approximately what percent of A?

(A) 41%

(B) 64%

(C) 100%

(D) 136%

(E) 159%

12) Suppose that, at current exchange rates, $1 (US) is equivalent to Q euros, and 1 euro is equivalent to 7Q Chinese Yuan. Suppose that K kilograms of Chinese steel, worth F Chinese Yuan per kilogram, sold to a German company that paid in euros, can be fashioned into N metal frames for chairs. These then are sold to an American company, where plastic seats & backs will be affixed to these frames. If the German company made a total net profit of P euros on this entire transaction, how much did the US company pay in dollars for each frame?

13) At the Zamenhof Language School, at least 70% of the students take English each year, at least 40% take German each year, and between 30% and 60% take Italian each year. Every student must take at least one of these three languages, and no student is allowed to take more than two languages in the same year. What is the possible percentage range for students taking both English and German in the same year?

(A) 0% to 70%

(B) 0% to 100%

(C) 10% to 70%

(D) 10% to 100%

(E) 40% to 70%

14) On any given day, the probability that Bob will have breakfast is more than 0.6. The probability that Bob will have breakfast **and** will have a sandwich for lunch is less than 0.5. The probability that Bob will have breakfast **or** will have a sandwich for lunch equals 0.7. Let P = the probability that, on any given day, Bob will have a sandwich for lunch. If all the statements are true, what possible range can be established for P?

(A) 0 < P < 0.6

(B) 0 ≤ P < 0.6

(C) 0 ≤ P ≤ 0.6

(D) 0 < P < 0.7

(E) 0 ≤ P < 0.7

(A) – 64

(B) – 7

(C) 38

(D) 88

(E) 128

Explanations for this problem are at the end of this article.

Here are twenty-eight other articles on this blog with free GMAT Quant practice questions. Some have easy questions, some have medium, and few have quite challenging questions.

1) GMAT Geometry: Is It a Square?

2) GMAT Shortcut: Adding to the Numerator and Denominator

3) GMAT Quant: Difficult Units Digits Questions

4) GMAT Quant: Coordinate Geometry Practice Questions

5) GMAT Data Sufficiency Practice Questions on Probability

6) GMAT Quant: Practice Problems with Percents

7) GMAT Quant: Arithmetic with Inequalities

8) Difficult GMAT Counting Problems

9) Difficult Numerical Reasoning Questions

10) Challenging Coordinate Geometry Practice Questions

11) GMAT Geometry Practice Problems

12) GMAT Practice Questions with Fractions and Decimals

13) Practice Problems on Powers and Roots

14) GMAT Practice Word Problems

15) GMAT Practice Problems: Sets

16) GMAT Practice Problems: Sequences

17) GMAT Practice Problems on Motion

18) Challenging GMAT Problems with Exponents and Roots

19) GMAT Practice Problems on Coordinate Geometry

20) GMAT Practice Problems: Similar Geometry Figures

20) GMAT Practice Problems: Variables in the Answer Choices

21) Counting Practice Problems for the GMAT

22) GMAT Math: Weighted Averages

23) GMAT Data Sufficiency: More Practice Questions

24) Intro to GMAT Word Problems, Part I

25) GMAT Data Sufficiency Geometry Practice Questions

26) GMAT Data Sufficiency Logic: Tautological Questions

27) GMAT Quant: Rates and Ratios

28) Absolute Value Inequalities

These are hard problems. When you read the solutions, don’t merely read them passively. Study the strategies used, and do what you can to retain them. Learn from your mistakes!

1) We need sets of three distinct integers {a, b, c} that have a sum of one-digit number d. There are seven possibilities:

- a) {1, 2, 3}, sum = 6
- b) {1, 2, 4}, sum = 7
- c) {1, 2, 5}, sum = 8
- d) {1, 3, 4}, sum = 8
- e) {1, 2, 6}, sum = 9
- f) {1, 3, 5}, sum = 9
- g) {2, 3, 4}, sum = 9

For each set, the sum-digit has to be in the one’s place, but the other three digits can be permutated in 3! = 6 ways in the other three digits. Thus, for each item on that list, there are six different possible four-digit numbers. The total number of possible four-digit numbers would be 7*6 = 42. Answer =** (E)**

2) The fact that abcd is odd means that cd must be an odd number and that a & b both must be odd. That limits the choices significantly. We know that neither a nor b can equal 1, because any single digit number times 1 is another single digit number, and we need a two-digit product—there are no zeros in abcd. We also know that neither a nor b can equal 5, because any odd multiple of 5 ends in 5, and we would have a repeated digit: the requirement is that all four digits be distinct.

Therefore, for possible values for a & b, we are limited to three odd digits {3, 7, 9}. We can take three different pairs, and in each pair, we can swap the order of a & b. Possibilities:

- use {3, 7}, product = 21, abcd could be 3721 or 7321
- use {3, 9}, product = 27, abcd could be 3927 or 9327
- use {7, 9}, product = 63, abcd could be 7963 or 9763

Those six are the only possibilities for abcd.

Answer = **(B)**

3) Total number of cars = 500

2D cars total = 165, so

4D cars total = 335

120 4D cars have BUC

“*Eighteen percent of all the cars with back-up cameras have standard transmission*.”

18% = 18/100 = 9/50

This means that the number of cars with BUC must be a multiple of 50.

How many 2D cars can we add to 120 4D cars to get a multiple of 50? We could add 30, or 80, or 130, but after that, we would run out of 2D cars. These leaves three possibilities for the total number with BUC:

If a total of 150 have BUC, then 18% or 27 of them also have ST.

If a total of 200 have BUC, then 18% or 36 of them also have ST.

If a total of 250 have BUC, then 18% or 45 of them also have ST.

Then we are told: “*40% of all the cars with both back-up cameras and standard transmission are two-door car*.”

40% = 40/100 = 2/5

This means that number of cars with both back-up cameras and standard transmission must be divisible by 5. Of the three possibilities we have, only the third words.

Total cars with BUC cams = 250 (120 with 4D and 130 with 2D)

18% or 45 of these also have ST.

40% of that is 18, the number of 2D cars with both BUC and ST.

Thus, the number of 4D cars with both BUC and ST would be

45 – 18 = 27

Answer = **(B)**

4) 700 student total

4G = total number of fourth graders

5G = total number of fifth graders

We are told 4G = 320, so 5G = 700 – 320 = 380

5GM, 5GF = fifth grade boys and girls, respectively

We are told 5GF = 210, so 5GM = 380 – 210 = 170

4GC, 5GC = total number of 4^{th} or 5^{th} graders, respectively taking Chinese

We are told

5GC = 0.5(5G) = 0.5(380) = 190

4GC = 0.4(4G) = 0.4(320) = 128

4GFM, 4GMC, 5GFC, 5GMC = 4^{th}/5^{th} grade boys & girls taking Chinese

We are told that, of the 170 fifth grade boys, 90 do not take Chinese, so 170 = 90 = 80 do. Thus 5GMC = 80.

5GMC + 5GFC = 5GC

80 + 5GFC = 190

5GFC = 110

We are told:

4GFM < (0.5)(5GFC)

4GFM < (0.5)(100)

4GFM < 55

Thus, 4GFM could be as low as zero or as high as 54.

4GMC = 4GC – 4GFM

If 4GFM = 0, then 4GMC = 128 – 0 = 128

If 4GFM = 54, then 4GMC = 128 – 54 = 74

Thus, fourth grade boys taking Mandarin Chinese could take on any value N, such that 74 ≤ N ≤ 128. Of the answer choices listed, the only one that works is 100.

Answer = **(D)**

5) The single cube has paint on all six sides. Each of the eight boxes in the 2 x 2 x 2 cube has paint on three sides (8 corner pieces). In the 3 x 3 x 3 cube, there are 8 corner pieces, 12 edge pieces (paint on two sides), 6 face pieces (paint on one side), and one interior piece (no paint). In the 4 x 4 x 4 cube, there are 8 corner pieces, 24 edge pieces, 24 face pieces, and 8 interior pieces. This chart summarizes what we have:

For the 10 x 10 flat square, we will need 4 corner pieces that have paint on three sides, 32 edge pieces that have paint on two sides (top & side), and 64 middle pieces that have paint on one side (the top).

We could use either the single total box or any of the 24 corner boxes for the four corners of the square. That leaves 21 of these, and 35 edge boxes, more than enough to cover the 32 edges of the square. The remaining ones, as well as all 30 face boxes, can be turned paint-side-up to fill in the center. The only boxes that will need to be painted, one side each, are the 9 interior boxes. Thus, we have 9 sides to paint.

Answer = **(C)**

6) Here’s a diagram.

First, let’s count the equilateral triangles. They are {AEI, BFJ, CGK, DHL}. There are only four of them.

Now, consider all possible isosceles triangles, excluding equilateral triangles, with point A as the vertex. We could have BAL, CAK, DAJ, and FAH. All four of those have a line of symmetry that is vertical (through A and G). Thus, we could make those same four triangles with any other point as the vertex, and we would never repeat the same triangle in the same orientation. That’s 4*12 = 48 of these triangles, plus the 4 equilaterals, is 52 total triangles.

Answer = **(B)**

7) There are five basic scenarios for this:

__Case I__: (make)(make)(make)(make)(any)

If she makes the first four, then it doesn’t matter if she makes or misses the fifth!

__Case II__: (miss)(make)(make)(make)(make)

__Case III__: (make)(miss)(make)(make)(make)

__Case IV__: (make)(make)(miss)(make)(make)

__Case V__: (make)(make)(make)(miss)(make)

Put in the probabilities:

__Case I__: (0.6)(0.8)(0.8)(0.8)

__Case II__: (0.4)(0.4)(0.8)(0.8)(0.8)

__Case III__: (0.6)(0.2)(0.4)(0.8)(0.8)

__Case IV__: (0.6)(0.8)(0.2)(0.4)(0.8)

__Case V__: (0.6)(0.8)(0.8)(0.2)(0.4)

Since all the answers are fractions, change all of those to fractions. Multiply the first by (5/5) so it has the same denominator as the other products.

__Case I__: (3/5)(4/5)(4/5)(4/5)(5/5) = 960/5^5

__Case II__: (2/5)(2/5)(4/5)(4/5)(4/5) = 256/5^5

__Case III__: (3/5)(1/5)(2/5)(4/5)(4/5) = 96/5^5

__Case IV__: (3/5)(4/5)(1/5)(2/5)(4/5) = 96/5^5

__Case V__: (3/5)(4/5)(4/5)(1/5)(2/5) = 96/5^5

Add the numerators. Since 96 = 100 – 4, 3*96 = 3(100 – 4) = 300 – 12 = 288.

288 + 256 + 960 = 1504

P = 1504/5^5

Answer = **(E)**

8) There are three cases: AABC, ABBC, and ABCC.

In case I, AABC, there are nine choices for A (because A can’t be zero), then 9 for B, then 8 for C. 9*9*8 = 81*8 = 648.

In case II, ABBC, there are 9 choices for A, 9 for B, and 8 for C. Again, 648.

In case III, ABCC, there are 9 choices for A, 9 for B, and 8 for C. Again, 648.

48*3 = (50 – 2)*3 = 150 – 6 = 144

3*648 = 3(600 + 48) = 1800 + 144 = 1948

Answer = **(D)**

9)

We know that the distance from A (0,6) to B (0, – 6) is 12, so triangle ABO is equilateral. This means that angle AOB is 60°. The entire circle has an area of

A 60° angle is 1/6 of the circle, so the area of sector AOB (the “slice of pizza” shape) is

The area of an equilateral triangle with side s is

Equilateral triangle AOB has s = 12, so the area is

If we subtract the equilateral triangle from the sector, we get everything to the right of the x-axis.

Again, that’s everything to the right of the x-axis, the parts of the circle that lie in Quadrants I & IV. We just want the part in Quadrant I, which would be exactly half of this.

Answer = **(C)**

10) One point is (50, 70) and one is (100, 89): the line has to pass above both of those. Well, round the second up to (100, 90)—if the line goes above (100, 90), then it definitely goes about (100, 89)!

What is the slope from (50, 70) to (100, 90)? Well, the rise is 90 – 70 = 20, and the run is 100 – 50 = 50, so the slope is rise/run = 20/50 = 2/5. A line with a slope of 2/5 could pass just above these points.

Now, what about the third point? For the sake of argument, let’s say that the line has a slope of 2/5 and goes through the point (50, 71), so it will pass above both of the first two points. Now, move over 5, up 2: it would go through (55, 73), then (60, 75), then (65, 77), then (70, 79), then (75, 81), then (80, 83). This means it would pass under the third point, (80, 84). A slope of 2/5 works for all three points.

We don’t have to do all the calculations, but none of the other slope values works.

Answer = **(D)**

11) The trap answer is 100%: a percent increase and percent decrease by the same percent do not cancel out.

Let’s say that the A = $100 at the beginning of the year.

End of January, 60% increase. New price = $160

End of February, 60% decrease: that’s a decrease of 60% of $160, so that only 40% of $160 is left.

10% of $160 = $16

40% of $160 = 4(16) = $64

That’s the price at the end of February.

End of March, a 60% increase: that’s a increase of 60% of $64.

10% of $64 = $6.40

60% of $64 = 6(6 + .40) = 36 + 2.4 = $38.40

Add that to the starting amount, $64:

New price = $64 + $38.40 = $102.40

End of April, 60% decrease: that’s a decrease of 60% of $102.40, so that only 40% of $102.40 is left.

At this point, we are going to approximate a bit. Approximate $102.40 as $100, so 40% of that would be $40. The final price will be slightly more than $40.

Well, what is slightly more than $40, as a percent of the beginning of the year price of $100? That would be slightly more than 40%.

Answer = **(A)**

12) The K kilograms, worth F Chinese Yuan per kilogram, are worth a total of KF Chinese Yuan. The German company must pay this amount.

Since 1 euro = (7Q) Chinese Yuan, then (1/(7Q)) euro = 1 Chinese Yuan, and (KF/7Q) euros = KF Chinese Yuan. That’s the amount that the Germans pay to the Chinese.

That is the German company’s outlay, in euros. Now, they make N metal chairs, and sell them, making a gross profit of P euros.

That must be the total revenue of the German company, in euros. This comes from the sale to the American company. Since $1 = Q euros, $(1/Q) = 1 euro, so we change that entire revenue expression to euros to dollars, we divide all terms by Q.

That must be the total dollar amount that leaves the American company and goes to the German company. This comes from the sale of N metal frames for chairs, so each one must have been 1/N of that amount.

Answer = **(A)**

13) First, we will focus on the least, the lowest value. Suppose the minimum of 70% take English, and the minimum of 40% take German. Even if all 30% of the people not taking English take German, that still leaves another 10% of people taking German who also have to be taking English. Thus, 10% is the minimum of this region.

Now, the maximum. Both the German and English percents are “at least” percents, so either could be cranked up to 100%. The trouble is, though, that both can’t be 100%, because some folks have to take Italian, and nobody can take three languages at once. The minimum taking Italian is 30%. Let’s assume all 100% take German, and that everyone not taking Italian is taking English: that’s 70% taking English, all of whom also would be taking German. Thus, 70% is the maximum of this region.

Answer = **(C)**

14) Let A = Bob eats breakfast, and B = Bob has a sandwich for lunch. The problem tells us that:

P(A) > 0.6

P(A and B) < 0.5

P(A or B) = 0.7

First, let’s establish the minimum value. If Bob never has a sandwich for lunch, P(B) = 0, then it could be that P(A and B) = 0, which is less than 0.5, and it could be that P(A) = 0.7, which is more than 0.6, so that P(A or B) = 0.7. All the requirements can be satisfied if P(B) = 0, so it’s possible to equal that minimum value.

Now, the maximum value. Since P(A or B) = 0.7, both P(A) and P(B) must be contained in this region. See the conceptual diagram.

The top line, 1, is the entire probability space. The second line, P(A or B) = 0.7, fixes the boundaries for A and B. P(A) is the purple arrow, extending from the right. P(B) is the green arrow extending from the left. The bottom line, P(A and B) < 0.5, is the constraint on their possible overlap.

Let’s say that P(A) is just slightly more than 0.6. That means the region outside of P(A), but inside of P(A or B) is slightly less than 1. That’s the part of P(B) that doesn’t overlap with P(A). Then, the overlap has to be less than 0.5. If we add something less than 1 to something less than 5, we get something less than 6. P(B) can’t equal 0.6, but it can any value arbitrarily close to 0.6.

Thus, 0 ≤ P(B) < 0.6.

Answer = **(B)**

15)

Answer = **(E)**

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]]>The post GMAT Scores for Top MBA Programs appeared first on Magoosh GMAT Blog.

]]>If you have a strong business school application, you likely won’t need a near-perfect GMAT score for admission into a top MBA program. But how do you know if your GMAT score is up to par with your dream school’s GMAT requirements? Have no fear; we’ve collected GMAT score data from the admissions offices of all the top business schools to bring you the most recent data in average GMAT scores by school.

** Special update:** We’ve collected the very most recent information for average GMAT scores by school for the top 10 business schools in the United States. See the section immediately below.

**Note:** This is the most up-to-date information on average GMAT scores by school, GMAT requirements by schools, and other important statistics. All data for Harvard GMAT scores, Stanford GMAT scores, and the rest (including school ranking), comes from U.S. News and Word Report.

Name of MBA Program/Business School | Average GMAT Score | Rank | Enrollment, 2016-2017 |
---|---|---|---|

Harvard Business School | 725 | 1 | 1,872 |

Stanford Graduate School of Business | 733 | 2 (tie) | 824 |

University of Chicago(Booth) | 726 | 2 (tie) | 1,180 |

University of Pennsylvania(Wharton) | 732 | 4 | 1,715 |

Northwestern University(Kellogg) | 724 | 5 (tie) | 1,272 |

Massachusetts Institute of Technology(Sloan) | 716 | 5 (tie) | 806 |

University of California-Berkeley(Haas) | 715 | 7 | 502 |

Yale School of Management | 761 | 8 (tie) | 668 |

Dartmouth(Tuck) | 717 | 8 (tie) | 563 |

Columbia Business School | 715 | 10 | 1,287 |

Of course, there’s a lot more out there than just the top 10. When it comes to finding your fit and researching MBA programs, the ranking numbers don’t tell the whole story.

Scroll down to see average GMAT scores for a wide range of reputable b-schools in the USA.

**Note:**** **This information is recent, but is not quite as up-to-date as the date in the table above. Still, these stats should give you a pretty good idea of these schools’ GMAT requirements and expectations. More updates will be coming soon. In the meantime, use this table to get a general idea of where you stand with each school.

(Click the image to open the infographic in a new page and zoom in/out!)

*Important to note: officially, the GMAT scale for verbal and quantitative goes up to 60, but in practice, the scale tops out at 51. Nowadays, a verbal subscore of 46 would get you in the 99th GMAT score percentile, while a 51 quant subscore would be in the 97th.*

To accurately assess your GMAT score, you must understand the big picture of GMAT admissions, and remember that your GMAT score is just one part of your application.

First, familiarize yourself with GMAT scoring. Then, compare your score to the average GMAT scores by school of admitted students at your target programs. Keep in mind that an average score for a top business school is not the bare minimum you need to get in–approximately half of applicants get into that school with less than that average score. (In other words, not all Wharton students attained a 732 score even though that’s the average Wharton GMAT score). That means you can think about it as just that–an average score.

If your GMAT is good enough for the programs you like (say, for example, you want to go to University of Chicago and your score is a 726, just as Booth’s GMAT score is a 726), then focus your energy on strengthening other aspects of your application. And if your score doesn’t quite make the cut, then consider retaking the GMAT only so you can distinguish yourself from other applicants with a similar application profile to yours.

Ultimately, you have to decide what is a good GMAT score for you. GMAT scores may be paramount to the application process, but even a 720 combined score won’t get you into the best business schools without a strong application to back it up. Your entire profile must honestly and effectively represent your successes, abilities, and potential.

Still … a 720 can’t hurt.

If you’ve checked out an average GMAT score by school and think you need help getting there, then reach out about our Magoosh GMAT Prep! And while you’re at it, leave us a comment below with your thoughts about this infographic.

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]]>The post How Long Should I Study for the GMAT? appeared first on Magoosh GMAT Blog.

]]>1) The first consideration to answer how long you should study for the GMAT is simply: how good are you at the whole standardized-test thing in general? Some people regularly ace standardized tests. Others regularly flub them. This is an estimation—at a gut-level, how comfortable are you, and how successful have you been, with the whole standardized-test thing?

2) How many days you should study depends in part on how many hours a day you can study. Let’s say that 1 hour a day for six months would be very approximately equivalent to six hours a day for one month. The caveat, of course, is most people have real limits concerning how much they can focus. Many also have limitations on how much info they can absorb and assimilate in a single day. Can you put in six hours a day of quality, high-focus study time, day after day, for a month? If so, that’s fantastic. However for most people—not only because of the practical constraints of job and family, but also because of the cognitive constraints on focus and assimilation—the best option would be less-time-per-day over a longer number days studying for the GMAT.

3) Let’s say you have taken a practice test, relatively cold, with little prep, and got some score. We’ll call this a baseline score. What is your target score? How much do you want to improve from this cold-take baseline? Let’s say, with moderate prep, you could improve 50 points over a relatively cold-take. That’s readily do-able. Improving 100 points—that’s more of a challenge. Improving 150 or 200 points or more—that will take exceptionally diligent work. You’ll need to sustain this GMAT study plan over quite some time, and even then, an improvement of this magnitude is not guaranteed.

4) What are your relative strengths? Consider the two big categories—math and verbal. On a 1-10 scale, how would you rank your relative aptitudes in each? This may play into extra time over and above the time you spend studying specifically for the GMAT.

I would say a three month study plan, with 1-2 hours of GMAT study time per weekday and a single 3-4 hour stint on each weekend—that I would call **moderate study**, probably enough to produce for most people a 50-100 point increase over a relatively cold-take score. Again, this assumes eight hours of sleep a night, a healthy lifestyle, and a normal college-graduate level of learning and remembering.

If you want to improve substantially more than 50-100 points, I would suggest extending your GMAT study time for longer time than three months. In general, the more you can spread your study out over a long period—say, six months—the more time you will have to return a second and even a third time to each topic. This will take advantage of how the brain learns and processes. Repeated exposure helps to encode material into long-term memory.

If, for whatever combination of reasons, you have only a month to prepare for the GMAT, understand that’s not ideal. It will demand both longer stints each day as well as the sustained focus and commitment, in order to get the most out of it. You’re thinking strictly in terms of how many hours to study for the GMAT — not months. For just that one month, be ready to hunker down and work intensely.

If you are planning to take considerably less than a month to prepare for the GMAT—either you are unusually gifted, or you don’t really take the test seriously. How long you study for the GMAT is, to some extent, a statement about how seriously you take the GMAT. If you take the GMAT seriously, then put in the study time to prepare for it. If you don’t take it seriously, then why are you taking it at all? This is your life: it’s not a game, not a stage rehearsal for anything else. Time is precious. Why would you waste significant time and energy and focus and determination on something you don’t take seriously? It’s absolutely necessary to have time doing things that are enjoyable and un-serious in order to refresh and recharge, but why take on something difficult and demanding if you don’t take it seriously? Whoever you are, your time is worth more than that! That’s my 2¢.

This concerns consideration #4 above. If you would rate either of the categories three or below, that’s a red flag. That’s an indication you need extra GMAT study time and thus an extra head start. This is a big curveball in the how-long-do-I-study-for-the-GMAT question!

If you are a math whiz but weak in verbal, and most especially if English is not your first language, then yes, pursue a moderate study schedule, say, a three-month study schedule for folks stronger in math, and in addition to that, **READ**! Read at least an hour a day—two hours a day would be better. Reading the high-brow material recommended at that blog will accustom your ear to advanced grammatical constructions typical of GMAT Sentence Correction, and will help you practice the analysis skills you will need on both GMAT Critical Reasoning and GMAT Reading Comprehension. Ideally, you will begin this daily reading habit well before the rest of your GMAT studying—a year or more. Where will you get the time to do all this reading? Well, if you sharply reduce TV, video games, and other forms of electronic entertainment, you actually will be doing your brain a favor.

If you are relatively comfortable in verbal, and you haven’t even looked at math since an unfriendly farewell a few years back, then you need to study math, starting pretty much as soon as you finish reading this post. You don’t get a calculator on the GMAT Quant section, so practice mental math—every day, you should add & subtract & multiply & divide in your head. Get remedial books published for high school students, “Algebra Review”, “Geometry Review”, and start reading. Look for every possible application of math in your life. Think areas of rooms, grocery bills, gas mileage, and the like. Do the real world math. Ideally, all this focus on math should begin months before you embark on, say, a three-month study schedule for folks stronger in verbal.

In both cases, this extra focus you give one area or the other should be considered over and above how long you study for the GMAT. These are the *extra* hours you need to study for the GMAT.

Studying for the GMAT takes a lot of time, regardless of your skill level. Average GMAT students can expect to spend 100-170 hours studying, over the course of 2-3 months. The very top scorers on the GMAT often spend more than 170 hours, with study plans lasting up to 6 months. Keep this in mind when considering how many hours to study for the GMAT.

That’s a general overview of how long to study for the GMAT. The study schedules at the links above will give you more details, and more a sense of what’s required. If you have more questions about your needed GMAT study time situation, please let us know in the comment section below.

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]]>The post GMAT Test Dates | 2016, 2017, 2018 and Beyond! appeared first on Magoosh GMAT Blog.

]]>If you are planning to apply to full-time MBA programs next year to start classes in the next 12-18 months, this is the perfect time to start preparing for your GMAT test date. Even if you aren’t planning to apply for another few years, it’s not too early to take the test! GMAT scores are valid for five years so the sooner you can get this test out of the way, the more time you will have to focus on other aspects of your application, and the less stressed out you will be when deadlines start rolling around.

These timelines will help guide you as you start planning your preparation calendar for the next year. These timelines are based on the most common deadlines for rounds of applications at top MBA programs. Most top schools set MBA application deadlines three times a year, in three rounds. Check with specific schools for exact deadlines for Round 1, Round 2, and Round 3. And check out this article for help figuring out which round you should apply in.

December - February | March | April - May | June | July - August | September - October |
---|---|---|---|---|---|

Study | Take GMAT | Study | Retake GMAT | Essays, etc... | Round 1 due |

March - May | June | July - August | September | October-November | December - January |
---|---|---|---|---|---|

Study | Take GMAT | Study | Retake GMAT | Essays, etc... | Round 2 due |

June - August | September | October - November | December | January - February | March - April |
---|---|---|---|---|---|

Study | Take GMAT | Study | Retake GMAT | Essays, etc... | Round 3 due |

You can register to the test anywhere between six months to 24 hours in advance of your GMAT test date (or GMAT test dates if you are retaking the test; remember you need to allow for a 16-day window between test days!). Unlike the SAT, the GMAT is offered on an ongoing basis, but if you wait too late to register, spots may fill up and you may not get the dates/times you prefer.

Assuming…

- You will take 3 months to study
- You will retake the test if you are not happy with your score
- You will use 2 months to prepare other aspects of your application (writing essays, working with recommenders, doing research and visiting schools, soul-searching, etc.)

Keep in mind that the GMAC recommends that you take the test at least 21 days prior to your application deadline, so that there is ample time for your scores to be processed and sent to your school.

The amount of time you’ll need to study will depend on your strengths and weaknesses, but according to a GMAC survey in 2014, students who scored 700+ prepared for an average of 121 hours. For an idea of what a 700 GMAT score looks like, it may be helpful to check out our GMAT Score Calculator. Factoring in your full-time job and real life, this gives you about 3 months of study time. We have super-detailed study schedules that I would highly recommend you take a look at to help you plan for your GMAT date.

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]]>The post How Much Does the GMAT Cost? A Guide to GMAT Exam Fees appeared first on Magoosh GMAT Blog.

]]>Before we get into any more detail, let’s look at how much the GMAT might cost you.

Scheduling fee | $250 |

Rescheduling fee (more than 7 days out) | $50 |

Rescheduling fee (within 7 days of the exam) | $250 |

Cancellation fee (more than 7 days out) | $170; $80 refund |

Cancellation fee (less than 7 days out) | $250; $0 refund |

Additional score report | $28 |

With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of these GMAT costs in more detail. Skip ahead to a section by selecting a GMAT cost or GMAT score report section from the navigation table below, or keep scrolling down to review all information.

- The GMAT Cost
- Rescheduling and Cancellation Fees
- Score Reports and (Un-)Cancellation Fees
- Cost to Retake the GMAT
- GMAT Prep Materials
- Grad School Tuition

No matter what country you live in, the GMAT costs $250. Depending on your country, you may also need to pay some taxes on top of this price, though. Paying this $250 fee entitles you to one sitting of the GMAT.

Note, however, that if you choose to pay by phone you will be charged an additional $10. So, if you have easy access to the internet, register online!

The $250 base fee gives you one administration of the exam. GMAC, however, will add to your GMAT cost if you choose to do something like reschedule your exam. Rescheduling costs $50 if you reschedule your exam more than 7 days before your scheduled test. If you cancel, you can also get a refund of $80 (from your initial $250).

If you decide to reschedule or cancel at the very last minute, you’re out of luck. You’ll be charged another full $250. You also will not be entitled to a refund of your initial payment. That makes your GMAT cost essentially double—$500 for one sitting.

You cannot reschedule the GMAT within 24 hours of the test date. Your account history will instead register a “no-show.” Note that this will not be sent to schools in your score report, however.

Besides rescheduling fees, GMAC also charges for score reports. On test day, you are given five (5) free score reports. Any more will cost you $28 each.

Finally, if you cancel your scores and then later decide you want to un-cancel them, the good news is that you. On the other hand, you’ll be charged a $50 reinstatement fee.

You may retake the GMAT once every 16 calendar days, but no more than 5 times in a rolling 12-month period (but let’s be real, taking the GMAT 5 times would not be ideal anyway). However, **there are no discounts for taking the test again.** Also, don’t forget that the schools you send score reports to will see all of the scores you’ve received in the past five years. Unsure if you should retake the GMAT? You can find out more about GMAT retakes here.

While most of the GMAT cost comes from GMAC directly, you’ll also want to buy some prep materials! Keep in mind that the range of materials is enormous. A full, in-person course will run you thousands of dollars. Something more self-guided, like a GMAT study guide or online test prep could cost you less than $150. You can see some of our Magoosh plans here.

For high-quality free practice, you can also check out:

- GMATPrep Software from GMAC
- Advice from Online Forums
- The Magoosh FREE GMAT eBook is a great way to save money with top-notch materials
- You can also check out the Magoosh GMAT Blogfor practice problems, expert advice, and more!

If you’re hoping to attend a top-tier business school like Harvard, GMAT exam fees will just be a drop in the bucket![/caption]Always remember to put your GMAT cost in perspective. The whole point of taking the GMAT is to get into business school, after all. And that’s very expensive!

Since B-school itself will be pricey, you might want to consider this when budgeting in your GMAT cost. If you’re concerned about expenses, you might consider planning to avoid a rescheduling fee or a retake. You should also be prepared well in advance to send in your score reports to maximize your five free ones. After all, every dollar counts!

*This post was updated by Rachel Dale-Kapelke on 3/15/17, with help from Jen Nguyen.*

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]]>The post Is Taking the GMAT Hard? appeared first on Magoosh GMAT Blog.

]]>The GMAT exam can help you be competitive in the MBA Admissions process, if you score well. Most North American MBAs and European English-language business schools require GMAT scores. The exam tests your abilities in graduate-level reading, writing, and math. But how hard is it to do well in these skills, and how hard is it to get a competitive score? This brings us to our main question….

Great question! Let’s establish some general parameters for this. Imagine how hard it would be to put a giant squid into a half-Nelson or to climb the Matterhorn wearing rollerblades. Well, the GMAT is considerably easier than those. If you imagine how hard it is to tie your shoes or how hard it is to eat ice cream, well, then the GMAT is harder than those. OK, OK, I am being a little facetious, but a large part of the answer to the question “How hard is the GMAT?” is the frustratingly ambiguous statement “*It depends* …” Let me explain.

Yes, the GMAT is challenging. It’s supposed to be challenging. It’s supposed to be hard. In mythology, the hero, at the outset of her journey, encounters the “Guardian of the Threshold,” the initial challenge she must face in order to undertake her adventure – what the Tusken Raiders were to Luke Skywalker, or what the first Nazguls were to Frodo & friends at the Prancing Pony. This is precisely what the GMAT is for anyone keen to undertake the adventure of earning an MBA and pursuing a career in the business world. In any context, part of the role of the Guardian of the Threshold is to separate the daring from the lily-livered, the bold & adventurous from those who would prefer to be sheepish followers. The GMAT is hard — in preparing for it and taking it, you will take risks, experience pressure, and feel yourself stretched. If you are the sort of person who doesn’t like risks, doesn’t like pressure, and doesn’t like to feel stretched, then it’s an excellent question why you are pursuing an MBA and a career in management in the first place!

Simply in terms of showing up and taking the test, the GMAT is hard. From the moment you walk into the testing center and they relieve you of any indication of your individuality, until you finally emerge, it will be, at minimum, a little over four hours–four long, difficult hours. Just to maintain concentration and focus during this, you need to be in good physical shape, well-rested, and well-nourished. I would recommend no alcohol for the week leading up to your GMAT. I would recommend not just one, but three or four consecutive nights of 8+ hours of sleep. I would recommend lots of water, healthy snacks, and some stretching during the breaks. During my own GMAT experience, I found myself running out of gas by the end of the test—this may have something to do with the fact that I am old enough to remember Nixon‘s Presidency! If you remember no presidents before Clinton, then your youthful vigor will certainly help you, but, even then, do not underestimate the GMAT’s difficulty — both mentally and physically.

In many ways, this is really the question people are asking when they ask, “how hard is the GMAT?” Sure, any slob can waltz into the GMAT exam with no preparation, do shoddy work, and get an abysmal score without much effort. The GMAT is relatively easy if you simply don’t care how you do. But what if you do care? Then how hard is the GMAT? To answer that question, it helps to know how others score. Only 23% of GMAT takers score over 650, and only 11% cross that magical 700 threshold. Something above 700 is generally what folks have in mind when they consider a “good” GMAT score. The average score on the GMAT (the numerical mean of everyone who takes the test) is 552. That score won’t turn any heads for you. How hard is it to get a GMAT score of a higher caliber?

This is the “*it depends* …” part. If you regularly score in the 99th percentile of standardized tests, then getting over a 700 on the GMAT shouldn’t be too difficult with moderate preparation. If you regularly flub standardized tests, then acing the GMAT will be that much more difficult. If you remember the percentile of any previous standardized test, the percentile of your SAT score for example, then imagine you score at the same percentile on the GMAT—you can use this official chart to gauge what an equivalent score on the GMAT might be and the Magoosh GMAT score calculator to figure out your GMAT score. You could also take the Magoosh GMAT Diagnostic Test, to give yourself a rough idea of your starting point. Whatever you score cold, on a dry run before any preparation—assume it will not be hard to score this much after preparation on the real test. The question is: how do you improve your score?

Pushing yourself beyond what you already have achieved, pushing yourself toward your own excellence—this is always hard. Improving on the GMAT takes focus, responsibility, dedication, determination, and commitment. Again, if these are qualities you don’t like to exercise, then the whole idea of management in the modern business world might not be for you. If you are ready to do the hard work of improving, then avail yourself of the best GMAT resources. How much you will improve depends very much on how disciplined and how thorough you are willing to be in your preparation. Many folks dream about a spectacular performance but do only moderate preparation. Remember the Great Law of Mediocrity: if you do only what most people do, you will get only what most people get. If you want to stand out, you have to take outstanding action. If you are willing to do outstanding work in your preparation for the GMAT, that’s very hard, but with good material, the results will really pay off.

An ordinary soldier fears his enemy, but a samurai in kensho would experience no separation between self & other, friend & enemy, life & death. While that mindset might seem somewhat extreme, consider that what’s hard about the GMAT—the intellectual challenges, the time pressure, etc.—is not too different from what’s hard about being a manager charged with important decisions in the business world: in other words, what’s “hard” about the GMAT is, in many respects, the same as what’s “hard” about the life & career you are choosing for yourself by pursuing an MBA. If you pursue this life, that level of difficulty and challenge will become, as it were, your “new normal”—get used to this “new normal” now, and what had appeared “hard” about the GMAT will be simply normal. When you routinely expect challenge as a matter of course, nothing is “hard.” That perspective is exactly what I would wish for you as you prepare for the GMAT!

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