10 New Year’s Resolutions to Score Higher on the GMAT

December 20, 2016

What surprises will the new year bring? That’s hard to say. But hopefully, 2017 will bring you success on the GMAT. And this success doesn’t have to be a surprise.

Study hard, apply yourself, and your increased GMAT score this year won’t be at all surprising. Your path to fully predictable GMAT success in the coming year can start with some new year’s resolutions.

Resolution 1: Read More

GMAT Verbal includes a lot of reading comprehension. The passages tend to focus on “light academics” (undergrad-level history, science, and business). But you’ll be expected to read these “light” texts deeply and understand them well. In the coming year, become a voracious reader of GMAT-like content on websites, in magazines and newspapers, and in books.

Resolution 2: Care More About Your Writing

Writing skills are very important on the GMAT, both in Verbal and AWA. For a better GMAT score, you need to understand how to revise imperfect sentences, and how to write well-composed essays. You probably already write a lot; composing work memos, emails, and posts on social media. But do you care about the quality of your writings as much as you should? For the new year, resolve to really care about what you write, developing good writing habits for the GMAT.

Resolution 3: Math more

Yes, “math” can be a verb. And to get your best GMAT score in this upcoming year, you need to “go mathing” as much as possible. On shopping trips, start calculating total prices, sales tax included, in your head. Watch math videos on through Magoosh GMAT. Play math games online. Make math and the act of “mathing” a regular part of your life, so that your “math brain” is nice and limber when you sit for the GMAT.

Resolution 4: Take Some Full GMAT Practice Tests this Year

I’m surprised at how many GMAT preppers never take a gull GMAT practice exam, or only take one. Full practice GMATs give you the best feel for what the real test is like. Going through a whole GMAT is an essential test prep activity. Make sure you get in more than one full GMAT practice test this year.  

Resolution 5: Develop a Good Set of Multiple Choice Strategies

This year, make a point of learning multiple choice strategies for the GMAT. You can pick up some strategies from GMAT prep services. For example, you can check out Magoosh GMAT for video lessons and strategy-based practice sessions. You can also come up with personal strategy approaches during your prep. Keep a journal of the strategies you use, and put together a list of your best strategies for test day.

Resolution 6: Find Some GMAT Study Buddies

Networking with other GMAT preppers is a great way to boost your motivation. Working with other people is energizing and fun. This year, get a GMAT study partner or make a study group for the exam. This kind of social support can really help you and your partners boost your scores.

Resolution 7: Give Some Special Attention to IR

Added to the test in 2012, the Integrated Reasoning section of the GMAT is unique and challenging. It’s also easy to overlook in GMAT prep. Quant, Verbal, and AWA dominate the exam in the minds of many students. Resolve not to forget IR, and to instead give this section the attention it deserves.

Resolution 8: Learn What to Expect on Test Day

None of your GMAT practice this year will perfectly match the real experience on test day. But you can still resolve to learn about the real GMAT testing conditions. On the official GMAT website, read up on GMAT test center rules, and what to bring to the center on test day. Resolve to take a practice drive (or walk, or commute) to your test center ,too.

Resolution 9: Set Your Test Date

Resolve to set a test date this year, and commit to it. Remember to schedule your test in time for B-school application deadlines. But also make your test date realistic; give yourself enough time to adequately prepare. Speaking of which….

Resolution 10: commit to a Specific Timeline and Schedule for Your Studies

A good study plan is the cornerstone of your commitment to GMAT success in the new year. To see what that schedule might look like, check out the various timelines and study schedules in Magoosh’s online GMAT study guide.

About The Author

David Recine, Guest Blogger
David Recine, Guest Blogger

David Recine is a test prep expert at Magoosh. He has a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and a Masters in Teaching English to Speakers of other Languages from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. He has been teaching K-12, University, and adult education classes since 2007.




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tannar2020
Stanford ‘20


Accepted to Stanford, UC Berkeley, UC Davis, UCLA

Born in small town, interested in math, science, and literature. Attending Stanford University starting fall of 2016, planning on studying engineering or computer science, with a minor in a foreign language.
niustephanie
Stanford ‘19


Accepted to Stanford, MIT, GA Tech

STEM outreach enthusiast. Poet. Programmer. Advocate for women in STEM.
SChai
Georgetown ‘18


Accepted to Georgetown, NYU, Barnard, Northeastern

Hi, I'm Shannon! I'm from San Jose, California, spent a gap year living and working in Leipzig, Germany, and now I go to college in Washington D.C. I've shared everything I can remember about the college application process with y'all! :)
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