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Thread: GMAT: My Biggest Gripe with the GMAT

  1. #1
    Ankylosaurus Forum Admin Erin's Avatar
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    Angry

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    Nobody actually likes the GMAT, or at least not many people do. People complain about all kinds of things about the test and the test-taking situation. People say that the price is too high, it's too long (upwards of four hours, total time in and out of the test center), the conditions at the test centers are not conducive to doing one's best, and, well, it just doesn't always represent how well you'll do in school once you're accepted. Non-native speakers are especially vociferous in this last complaint. If you're one of these people, I strongly suggest that you send GMAT an e-mail to complain about anything you don't like about the test. Believe it or not, they do listen to you, and they most certainly want to secure their monopoly on B-school admissions tests.

    My biggest gripe with the GMAT, however, has to do with something quite different. As a test prep instructor, I rely on good materials to use with my students and rely heavily on what "official" material is available. Anybody who works in this field or has been preparing for any well made standardized test for a good period of time will already know this.

    Well, there is simply no source of material that represents the current state of the GMAT. Not the Official Guide, not Kaplan's or Princeton Review's books, not even the infamous GMATplus. In a word, for most people there is no product, no book, no software that will accurately predict your score on test day. I know that many of you will say that you have taken x test and received x score, and that that score was the same as your real score on the real GMAT. However, I have seen very few students receive a score on any of the practice tests within about 10% of their score on the real GMAT.

    So, what is the solution? To be honest, there is no ideal solution, but the closest you can come is to get your hands on a good variety of materials and try to scour the Internet for the latest gossip. This is precisely what the most aggressive B-school applicants do, and if you're shooting for a top school, you should too.

    Of course, the TestMagic GMAT forum is a great place to start. The Princeton Review discussion board used to be good, but since they implemented a registration process, the quality and number of posts has significantly dropped. The BusinessWeek board is okay, but it's more gossip and chit-chat than most boards.
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    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Hi Erin,

    Your comments are absolutely valid. Now that ETS is no more in the picture and Pearson calling the shots, what should be done?

    I think at least Pearson should come out with some official guide or something that provides insight into the test.

    - Khantil

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