If you even have that thought, you’re in one of two camps:
- You know that your score is low and you’re (rightly) worried that it’s going to keep you out.
- You have a decent score but you’re a worrier – and perhaps a little uneducated.
We’ll tackle the more important case today.
This is of course a complicated question. It depends on what your best GMAT score already is, how many times you’ve taken the test, what your background is, what your GPA is, what schools we’re talking about, etc.
But we can cut through the chase on all of that and ask you just one simple question:
Did you study?
Before you took the test, did you put in the work?
The GMAT test-maker people say that studying helps. They claim that you can bump a score by 30 points or so by investing significant hours in the books. Their range is 60 to 100 hours to show this type of improvement. How much time you literally need to see an improvement depends on where you’re coming from – what’s your background already, where are you strong or weak.
And how serious are you, really.
We’ve seen people who say they “studied” but we know that it’s b_llsh_t. Opening a book while the TV is on is not studying. Reading through practice questions on a forum without actually trying to solve them is not studying. Reading the EssaySnark blahg is not studying. These all may be (semi)useful events in your life, but let’s get a little real with this.
Studying is sitting at your desk with no distractions and focusing 100% on the subject matter.
If you’re taking a GMAT prep class, then class time doesn’t quite count as studying either – though it can be immensely helpful for many.
Studying is you, alone, working with the material. Studying is exercising your brain to make it stronger. Studying is active and, yes, it’s work.
If you deep down inside know that you’ve been cutting corners with this stuff, you’re only cheating yourself. Take the time. Put in the effort. Sure, you’ve been out of school for awhile, and this stuff is hard – but you can totally pull this off – we know you can!