GMAT - SPLessons

GMAT Exam Syllabus

Chapter 9

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GMAT Exam Syllabus

shape Introduction

The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a computer-based test conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council (also referred as GMAC). It intends to assess certain skills of a candidate, including; analytical writing assessment, integrated reasoning ability, quantitative, and verbal ability. The assessment so made is used for admission to graduate programs around the world and the most popular among them is Masters in Business Administration (MBA). Students from different background aspire to get admission in top business schools of the world. GMAT is the first step on the way. Best applicants are chosen on the basis of their scores. Therefore, the system for selection of students is made in a transparent manner. This article describes in detail about the GMAT exam pattern and GMAT exam syllabus.


shape Pattern

The GMAT exam pattern comprises of the following: four sections – Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative, and Verbal. At the test center, just before the exam begins, candidates can select the order in which they want to complete the sections. Candidates can check different segments along with some example questions and important subjects in this article. Below provided is the GMAT Exam Pattern in detail.

Section Name Number Of Questions Types Of Questions Asked Time Duration
Analytical Writing Assessment 1 topic Analysis of Argument 30 minutes
Integrated Reasoning 12 questions Multi Source Reasoning Graphics Interpretation Two part Analysis Table Analysis 30 minutes
Quantitative 31 questions Data Sufficiency
Problem Solving
62 minutes
Verbal 36 questions Reading Comprehension
Critical Reasoning
Sentence Correction
65 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 7 minutes



shape Syllabus

The GMAT exam syllabus and pattern comprises of the following four sections. The details of the GMAT exam syllabus are provided below.
1) Analytical Writing Assessment
2) Integrated Reasoning Section
3) Quantitative Section
4) Verbal Section

Section 1: Analytical Writing Assessment
This section has a 30-minute essay which includes:
Analysis of an Argument
Here you’re expected to-

  • Look at and analyse the given argument.
  • Make sense of out the reasoning behind an argument and compose a critique of the same.
  • Work out a methodical way to deal with present your answer.
  • Consider different perspectives.
  • Support your answer with proper examples and clarification.
  • Make certain of the correct sentence structure utilization while introducing your answer.

The scores for this section are on a six point scale. Your essay is given two independent ratings and then an average is considered.

One of these scores is done by an automated essay-scoring engine. If the difference between both the ratings is more than one point, a third rating would be provided by an expert reader which would then be the final score.

Section 2: Integrated Reasoning (IR)
This new section of the GMAT was introduced in June 2012. It has 12 questions with 30 minutes to answer this section. The score is on a scale of 1 to 8.
This section tests how well you can make utilization of your analytical skills to solve a complicated problem. You are provided with utilization in different forms.
Your skill depends on being able to handle the data, select the information that is applicable and then choose the correct answer. In each question, you are expected to provide multiple answers from the choice provided.
This section has four different question types:

  • Table Analysis
  • Graphics Interpretation
  • Multi-Source Reasoning
  • Two-Part Analysis

Table Analysis: In this, you are given a lot of data in a table format. The question asked that expects you choose answers from yes/no, true/false with multiple statements to answer under each question.

Graphics Interpretation: In this sort, you are given a diagram or a graphical picture. You’re relied upon to interpret the graph and complete the statements given by picking one of the alternatives starting from the pull menu.

Multi-Source Reasoning: Here you need to gather data by clicking on the different tabs (2-3) provided. The data available may be presented either as text or in the form of charts, tables. The appropriate answers may be in the yes/no, true/false format or as multiple choice options.

Two-Part Analysis: You have a question and multiple choices provided. The appropriate answers in a table form have the two components occupying the first two columns and the answer options in the third column. Of all the options provided, you have to choose only one option under every component to complete one answer.

Section 3: Quantitative Section
The GMAT Quantitative section measures the ability to reason quantitatively, solve quantitative problems, and interpret graphic data. Two different types of multiple-choice questions are used in the Quantitative section:


Problem solving and data sufficiency questions are mixed all through the Quantitative section. Both types of questions require basic information of:

Following are some of the topics you can expect in the quantitative section:

  • Math’s Formulas List
  • Integers
  • Decimals
  • Fractions
  • Number properties
  • Order of operations
  • Percentage
  • Ratio and proportion
  • Profit and loss
  • Simple and compound interest
  • Speed, distance and time
  • Permutation & combination
  • Linear equations
  • Quadratic equations
  • Sets Theory
  • Statistics: Average, Median, Mode, Range, Standard deviation
  • Powers and roots
  • Probability
  • Pipes, cisterns, work, time
  • Lines and angles
  • Triangles
  • Polygon
  • Quadrilateral
  • Circles
  • Co-ordinate geometry
  • Volume and surface area

Section 4: Verbal Section
The GMAT Verbal section measures the ability to read and comprehend written material, to reason and evaluate arguments, and to correct written material to conform to standard written English. Since the Verbal section includes reading sections from several different content areas, you might be generally familiar with some of the material; however, neither the reading passages nor the questions assume detailed knowledge of the topics discussed. Three types of multiple-choice questions are used in the Verbal section:

  • Reading comprehension
  • Critical reasoning

Critical reasoning questions test your ability to examine logical arguments. The contentions cover a scope of points and circumstances which normal GMAT-takers would be relied upon to have the capacity to see, even if they are not very familiar with the subject area candidates can complete this section very comfortable.
1. First read the argument very carefully. Wherever possible, identify premises, assumptions and conclusion. (Take approx. 30 seconds to get it.)
2. Take a couple of additional seconds to ensure you understand the conclusion of the argument.
3. Read the question prompt to find what you are asked to do (strengthen / weaken / find assumption etc.) and afterward think what a right answer may include. (Take approx. 30 seconds to think.)
4. Now read the given choices. Select the best answer this should be simple if you have not rushed the previous steps. (Take approx. 30 seconds to read and select.)

Sentence correction:
All sentence correction questions comprise of a sentence with part underlined, followed by 5 answer choices. Your task is to pick the BEST form from the choices given. Sentence correction questions test your knowledge of standard written (American) English.
GMAT sentence correction questions test more than one grammar point. Therefore, you need a systematic approach:

1. Read the sentence carefully and try to spot an error.
2. If you can find an error, eliminate the answer choices that contain the same error. (This often removes two or three choices.)
3. Go through the remaining choices to find a second error and fix that.
4. If you cannot find an error consider option A.
5. Finally read the whole sentence with the option you are selecting in place.

  • Basic Sentence structure: Nouns, Pronouns, Adjectives
  • Verb Tense
  • Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
  • Pronoun Agreement
  • Subject Verb Agreement
  • Modifiers
  • Parallelism