Take it from Katja Smuk, one of our MBA ‘17D students with a top GMAT score at INSEAD. How did this 25-year-old consultant from Bain and Company ace the ever-challenging GMAT, which has had so many people spend hours studying for? Here are five tips from Katja on how she conquered the GMAT with a score of 780!
Tip #1: Practice, practice, practice
This is definitely the most important factor. Most likely you already know everything you need to do well on the GMAT. But it’s understanding the format and type of questions, and getting some experience in solving them, that will make the difference between good and great. Practicing will make you efficient and calm as you go into the real test, and allow your real skills to shine through.
Tip #2: Audit your mistakes
Be sure to make the most out of the practice and really ensure that you understand the basic concepts underlying the questions. Understanding your errors will help you avoid them going forward.
Tip #3: Time yourself
You’ll get two simulation exams with the software pack, but even before you do those, make sure to invest some thought into time management. Misallocating time is an easy trap to fall into when you’re stressed and trying to get the answers right. But you will ultimately have a much more adverse impact on the result than making an educated guess on a couple of questions.
Tip #4: Keep your cool
It’s just a test. Worst comes to worst, you can always re-take it. It is also a test that only measures a subset of your skills. Take some of the pressure to get into a certain percentile off yourself. If you go into the exam seeing it as a challenging game rather than a cornerstone of your future, you’ll relax and do much better!
Tip #5: Arm yourself with snacks
It’s a long exam and you’ll want to feed that brain some sugar during the breaks. Treat yourself; you deserve it. You are writing the GMAT after all!
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