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New GMAT Format: Addition of Integrated Reasoning

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New format for GMAT exams
Test To Include New Section Called ‘Integrated Reasoning’

The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT), a computer-based exam that has for long been the gateway to top B-schools across the world, is all set for a revamp. This will be the tenth avatar of GMAT, an exam created over half a century ago. The Next Generation GMAT will be introduced in June 2012. The pilot test will be conducted later this year.

One of the most significant changes in the test involves the addition of a new section, called Integrated Reasoning. “We have designed the new section in consultation with B-school faculty across the world. In addition to the verbal skills and quantitative analysis, the new section will test a candidate’s ability to evaluate information from multiple sources and solve complex problems as well as the ability to listen to complex spoken material and form judgments over what statements would strengthen or weaken an argument,” Ashok Sarathy, vice-president, GMAT Program, told TOI from the US. This means that GMAT-takers will now wear headphones while writing the exam.

According to Sarathy, the new section will test students on how they assimilate data from multiple sources. For instance, candidates will have to read passages, graphs as well as tables and spreadsheets in order to ferret out bits of information from each to answer a question. “Integrated reasoning is a microcosm of what candidates will see in a classroom and later on, in the business world,” added Sarathy.

The Graduate Management Admission Council, the body that conducts GMAT, decided to introduce new section after surveying B-schools across the world in last four years. The overall length of the exam won’t increase and will remain three and a half hours. Integrated reasoning will be a 30-minute-long section that will replace one of the two essays that are part of GMAT’s analytical writing section. There will be no changes in verbal and quantitative sections, and exam will be scored using the existing scale.

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