Are you juggling between the preparation for GMAT and your job? It is completely understandable if you are considering getting promoted or interested in changing your job profile. The question haunting you would be How to prepare for GMAT while working full time?
The best way to accomplish this goal would be pursuing an MBA, but you will require a good GMAT score for that. Business schools (B-schools) usually prefer that you have two or more years of work experience and GMAT helps working professionals to become office management experts.
What is GMAT?
The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a Computer Adaptive Test (CAT). It is a standardized tool used by B-schools worldwide, as part of the selection criteria for admission into various graduate management programs such as MBA, Master of Finance and Master of Accountancy. GMAT assesses quantitative, logical, critical reasoning, analytical writing and problem-solving skills which are vital for success in business and management.
How to prepare for GMAT without letting go of your paycheck?
It is absolutely possible to achieve your GMAT dream score while balancing hectic work schedules. Here are some useful tips from Byju’s which will help you in excelling at the GMAT:
1. Do some effective research and take your first mock test without any preparation
There are a number of test prep resources available on the internet. Read reviews and choose accurate and applicable material such as Manhattan, Kaplan and Byju’s. These courses offer test trials. Take a full-length GMAT test without any prior preparation and make a realistic assessment of your strengths and weaknesses. This will help you in deciding how many months you will need to prepare for GMAT.
2. Prepare a realistic time table for yourself
It is extremely important to understand your schedule and plan for study. Strictly devote at least 2 hours daily from the beginning – one hour for the quant section and one for verbal. Be sincere and consistent. This way, you will eventually be able to give an hour two more as your test date nears.
Be proactive in managing your time. You can study during the early morning hours as your brain and body are fresh during this time for assimilating new information. You can also use your commuting time if you use the bus or train. This could be useful for revising your notes or watching videos or using apps on the phone to help your with your weak areas. Lunch hours at work are also a great time to study. It is an ideal time to solve your problems and reinforce what you studied in the morning, or for simply reading some articles to help improve your vocabulary.
During the weekends, you can handle Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) as it is a lengthy section, review old material, solve a bunch of problems and also try taking full-length GMAT tests.
3. Brush up the basics
A strong grasp of the basic grammatical and mathematical concepts always helps. They are the foundation for developing shortcut methods to successfully solve high order thinking and reasoning questions in a limited amount of time. You may not have been in touch with studies for a few years now, so give yourself some time to go through the basics.
4. Target your weaknesses
Make the most of your precious time while studying. If you are consistently doing well with arithmetic and having trouble with geometry, there is no point in studying arithmetic repeatedly. By focusing on your weakness, you will see tangible improvement.
5. Take mock tests at regular intervals
It is necessary to take full-length tests regularly. For instance, you can prepare during the week and take a test every Sunday. Scoring almost 500-600 without any preparation positively indicates that you require only 3 months for your GMAT preparation. A score of 400-500 shows that you need to study religiously for 6 months.
6. Do not quit your job
Preparing for GMAT with a job is difficult but leaving your job for it would never be a wise decision. Moreover, quitting will reflect negatively on your C.V. and it would be rather embarrassing when people ask you the reason for giving up on your job. Additionally, MBA is expensive and cutting the source of your income might affect you adversely.
Hope these strategies help you with your preparation. Good luck!
(by Kwisha Shah)