Effective and Efficient management of time on the test day can really be the most significant contributing factor whether your score is better or worse than the average score obtained in your mock tests during your GMAT prep phase. You cannot vary your content knowledge on the test day as that’s a fixed parameter. The only thing that is variable is time management. So, that’s the only thing which will be creating difference between your mock scores and actual test score. No matter how hard one tries to stimulate the real test environment while giving his mocks or practice tests, the scenario while actually writing the GMAT can’t be fully replicated. The anxiety levels experienced on the test day is very different when compared to the mocks you give.
This article specifically focuses on the strategies that can be followed on the test day to better manage your time. One thing that needs to be remembered is that you are not expected to answer 100 percent of the questions correctly. The scores in the range of 760-800 all fall in the 99th percentile. Some candidates hit the panic button as soon as they are not confident of answering a particular question. Also, many students consume far more time on a difficult question leaving you scarce of time for relatively easier questions. This crunch of time induces pressure, and takes a hit on your accuracy even for the easy and medium level questions. Remember, leaving questions unanswered at the end of any section hurts the score more than even answering them incorrectly. Each unanswered question drops your score by 3 percentile. Hence, leaving questions unanswered is the worst thing you can do on the GMAT exam.
“Floor is more important than the ceiling” is a famous quote in the GMAT world. It means missing easy questions hurts much more than answering a tough question correctly. A pressurized time environment leads one to commit silly mistakes, answering the wrong question, and not fully solving the problem. Sometimes a question asks for the parameter and we calculate the area. Similarly, sometimes the diameter is asked and radius is marked as the answer. So, give a diligent thought process and pay special attention to what is really asked? The GMAC questions are designed in such a way that an eye for detail is a must or you end up spending valuable time on a question and answer it wrongly. Answering around 75-80% of the questions correctly for all the questions is far better than answering 85% of questions correctly and leaving the 15% unanswered or answered using a wild guess.
Creating a benchmark for every section on the test is the key to better managing your time on the GMAT. Many students keep on looking at the timer after each question to know if they are on right pace. This leads to time waste and shift in your focus on a regular basis leading to the loss of rhythm and concentration during the test. Moreover, some questions actually need more time to solve than others. Breaking each section into 10 questions is a good idea. This will give you a fair idea whether you are rightly paced during the test or not. This takes into account all variety of questions, some you might be able to answer in less than a minute and some might take more than 2 minutes. Creating benchmarks kind of calculates the average to help you know whether you are rightly pacing the test.
Effectively time management is a skill that is acquired over a period of time and not a great difference can be made on the test day. Kindly refer to our article “How to improve on the timing. I am really struggling with it” for a comprehensive view to ace the time management skills.
We at GMAT gladiator have been pioneers in providing world-class online as well as one-on-one classes for the GMAT exam. It gives us great contentment to see our students realize their aspirations and potential through our guidance. We have catered to almost all parts of the globe as far as our students are concerned. Our students have got admitted to the most prestigious schools a child aspires to study. We have years of experience behind our back, which only increases our drive and confidence with each passing year to provide the best education for the GMAT exam. We have always believed that success is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. Since every person is unique, we at GMAT Gladiator also believe that every person has the potential though it just needs to be identified, nurtured, and polished. Each individual has unique strengths and weaknesses. The most important thing for a tutor or guide is to identify the gaps a candidate has and to work upon them slowly and steadily because both the gaps and the grasping power of each child is different, which cannot be identified in group classes. This is by far the most important thing required for a GMAT prep and that’s the reason we don’t do group classes, as we want to be sincere to our profession and one approach does not fit all. For us, money is not the only criterion, but imparting and imbibing valuable education to each person is our prime focus.
Our point of view – GMAT can be aced, but that surely requires the guidance of top GMAT instructors, which can effectively make a difference in your GMAT prep.