Table of Contents
Ever considered going into business? I never thought that I would, either, but it is one of the best decisions I have made in my life. Attending an MBA program opened so many doors for me on my way to a fulfilling, enjoyable career.
I am here today to review the GMAT Official Guide Bundle review, which was instrumental in my acceptance to the business program of my choice. Without gaining this degree, and all of the corresponding skills and knowledge, I would not be where I am today.
Business can be an exciting, rewarding, challenging field for people of all backgrounds and walks of life. If you’ve never considered going into this field before, there are a number of considerations for you to keep in mind. Going into business appeals to people for a wide variety of reasons, but the overarching themes tend to be the same: people want to have more say in what they do, when they work, and more control over their own lives across the board. It also doesn’t hurt matters to note that the median starting salary for American graduates of full-time, two year MBA programs is around $90,000. Obviously that varies greatly due to the particular job, the individual’s work experience, and geographic location, but overall this is a degree which tends to pay off.
Gaining a degree from a business school provides aspiring entrepreneurs with necessary skills in finance, accounting, marketing, economics, administration, organizational psychology, and other relevant areas. The first American business school, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, was founded in 1881. It wasn’t until almost 30 years later that Harvard Business School became the first program in the world to offer the Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree.
Preparing for – and taking – the GMAT
If you are looking to apply to an MBA program, you should note that many of the top business schools rely on the GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) when it comes to determining acceptances vs rejections. The GMAT is the business graduate program equivalent of the ACT vs SAT exams for college, or the GRE for other varieties of graduate schools. The GMAT is offered in numerous countries, and is accepted by many universities worldwide as well.
If you’ve already made it to the stage of studying for the GMAT, then you are no stranger to the drill of taking standardized tests. Although make no mistake: this test is obviously at a very different level than the ACT test or SAT exam you had taken back in the day. (If you haven't taken the SATs yet, check out our reviews on the Kaplan New SAT Premier and College Board official SAT study guide to determine which review program is best suited for your needs!)
There is no reason to be intimidated about the GMAT, but you should take care to prepare adequately so that you aren’t met with any surprises when it comes time to sit for your test. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and the decision to attend a graduate business program won’t happen in a day either. At least a year before you plan on attending such a program is the opportune moment to begin researching your target schools, as well as their respective GMAT requirements and deadlines. You know what comes next: time to hit the books!
GMAT 2016 Official Guide Bundle
The GMAT official guide bundle 2016 consists of all three official GMAT study guides, put out by the creators of the actual exam. This bundle includes the Official Guide for GMAT Review 2016, the Official Guide for GMAT Quantitative Review 2016, and the Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review 2016.
To begin with, take the included diagnostic exam of 100 questions to help target your areas of strengths and weaknesses. You will likely already have an idea of which subjects come more naturally to you, but it is crucial to pinpoint which sections will require the most amount of work on your part, so you can plan your time accordingly.
The study bundle comes with access to an online question bank of more than 1,500 actual retired GMAT questions, plus videos on how to ace the GMAT. Use these in conjunction with the books themselves to really up your understanding of integrated reasoning, reading comprehension, critical reasoning, sentence correction, grammar concepts, and algebra and word problems.
When you sit to take your practice exams, try to replicate the actual testing conditions by timing yourself and checking your phone and other electronics at the door. The closer your practice test setup is to the real GMAT, the more prepared and less anxious you will feel on Test Day.
After every practice test, be sure to devote enough time to going over each question to assess your areas of weakness. Understanding which sections give you trouble, and why, will help you to make your future studying more productive and to focus on those particular “issue” areas.
The GMAT website offers a “virtual tour” of the test center, including information about the environment plus testing check-in process, to alleviate stress and allow testers to arrive feeling more confident about what to expect.
Studying for the GMAT on Your Own
Once you have an idea of your general timeline, it will be easier to go ahead with creating – and sticking to! – a study schedule. If you are still in college and plan on attending graduate school in the near future, it might be in your best interests to take off a bit of time after your graduation to really devote yourself to studying for this exam. After all, there is only so much time you can spend studying for the GMATs while simultaneously studying for your college classes and tests, and even a great GMAT score isn’t worthwhile if it comes at the cost of doing well in your regular undergraduate courses.
If you are already a member of the workforce and are looking to go back to school, you will also require a bit of maneuvering to figure out a study schedule. Work, family, and other obligations are all so important, but if you don’t set aside in advance the time to study for your GMATs, you may find yourself approaching the week before the exam to suddenly realize that you don’t feel prepared. Don’t let this happen to you: make a schedule, and stick with it! Good luck!!