The Graduate Management Admission Test is a computer-adaptive test created to test unique analytical, writing, quantitative, verbal, and reading skills in written English.

This test is conducted by the GMAC (Graduate Management Admission Council). This exam is taken by graduate students to be admitted to business programs at top universities. 

As the exam is for graduate students, the level of the exam is also high, so the first question that comes to students’ minds is how to start GMAT preparation. Because the first step is always crucial and hard to take.

So in this blog, we will discuss how to prepare for GMAT from the beginning.

But before that, you must know what GMAT is and what is GMAT syllabus and pattern.

What is GMAT?

The GMAT exam is taken by students to prove their English language proficiency for business institutes in English-speaking nations. 

This test is a measure for the college committee to know whether the student has the level to pursue a master’s in business.

So this test is very important for students who want to pursue business abroad.

How To Start GMAT Preparation

Here are some of the best tips that will help you prepare for the GMAT exam.

  • Know The GMAT Syllabus
  • Set A Minimum Target Score
  • Know Your Capabilities
  • Understand The GMAT Exam Pattern
  • Choose A Study Strategy
  • Fill Up The Exam
  • Make a Proper Study Schedule
  • Give Practice Tests
how to start gmat preparation

Know The GMAT Syllabus

First of all, you should know the GMAT exam syllabus before practicing for the exam. Because after knowing the syllabus, you will be able to study according to the exam syllabus. And you will also know what kind of questions come into the exam.

For your convenience, we have provided the GMAT syllabus overview below.

GMAT Syllabus 2022

GMAT syllabus has 4 sections. 

  • Analytical Writing
  • Integrated Reasoning 
  • Quantitative
  • Verbal 

These 4 sections have the following type of questions in the exam. 

Analytical Writing

  • Argument essay
  • Issue essay

Integrated Reasoning 

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


  • Data Sufficiency
  • Problem-solving

These two types of Quantitative questions cover the following topics.

  • Arithmetic
  • Algebra 
  • Geometry 
  • Mensuration 
  • Word problems 
  • Statistics 


  • Reading comprehension
  • Critical reasoning 
  • Sentence correction 

Set A Minimum Target Score

You need to set a minimum target score when you start preparing for the GMAT. Keep your minimum target score at least 5 or 10 points higher than the score you need to enroll in your desired university. For example, if the minimum required score for your desired university is 70, keep your minimum target score of 80.

By keeping a target score in mind, you can prepare according to that. So the second step on how to start GMAT preparation is setting a target score.

Know Your Capabilities

You must know what you can do. It means knowing whether you can get your desired score by practicing yourself or gonna need online or offline classes., 

Every person has a different IQ level. Some students can prepare for GMAT in less than 1 month, and some need proper guidance for at least 3 months to crack the GMAT exam.

You can also read our other blog, “how to prepare for GMAT at home,” if you want to prepare for GMAT at home.

This was the third and one of the most important steps on how to start GMAT preparation. 

Understand The GMAT Exam Pattern

It is important for students to understand the pattern of the exam. You will know what type of question comes in the exam and how much time you will get to solve that question.

SectionsNumber of QuestionsTime Limit (mins.)
Analytical Writing1 Question (1 Essay)30
Integrated Reasoning12 Questions 30
Quantitative31 Questions62
Verbal36 Questions65
Total80 Questions 187

There will be 80 questions in the GMAT exam, and you will get 187 minutes, without including breaks, to solve the paper.

Choose A Study Strategy

You must choose a proper study plan to prepare for the GMAT exam. You must stick to that study plan. And also helps you to find out whether you can do self-study or need coaching to prepare.

Make a study strategy which do not put a burden on you and that you can easily follow. You must make a proper study schedule that has a proper break so that you can relax.

So making a good study strategy is also an important step on how to start GMAT preparation. 

Fill Up The Exam

You must fill up the exam if you want to practice properly. After preparing for one week, you will get to know your level that whether you can prepare for the GMAT in one month or not. 

If you think you can prepare for the exam in a month, then you must fill up the exam. When you fill up the exam, there will be no turning back. And you will start preparing even with extra enthusiasm. 

When you pay for the exam, it will put a thought that you have spent some money and you have to get something from that. 

It will put a thought in your mind that you should not waste the money that you spend on filling exams.

So, it will put some pressure on you, and you will give your 100% in preparation for the GMAT. 

This is also an important step on how to start GMAT preparation.

Make a Proper Study Schedule

Once you fill up the exam, then you won’t have any time to waste, so you must make a study schedule for the exam. 

You must give time to the subject you think you need improvement on. You should also practice the questions you are good at as by this, you can increase your time for solving a question. 

In the GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) test, time will be your biggest enemy, and you must beat that to get a good score.

Give Practice Tests

This is also an important step on how to start GMAT preparation. Before giving the actual GMAT exam, you must give practice mock tests that will give you an idea of what you will face in the exam.

Giving the mock test or practice tests is essential because it will give you a time management idea about the exam. 

By this, you will understand how much time you must spend on each exam section. 


In this blog, we have discussed how to start GMAT preparation. We have provided details about the GMAT exam before discussing the steps to prepare for the GMAT. 

We also describe the GMAT syllabus and the pattern for the exam, along with the steps.

We hope we have cleared your queries about how to start GMAT preparation, and for more content like this, keep visiting CourseMentor™.


How long do you need to prepare for the GMAT?

The answer to this question may vary with the student, but a normal student may require 2 to 3 months to prepare for the GMAT exam.

When can I start preparing for GMAT?

It is best for you to start preparing for the GMAT exam at least 4 to 6 months in advance of your test date.