Guessing Tips for the GMAT Exam

Regardless of the time and effort they might have put in, even the most groomed and well-prepared GMAT examinees find themselves lost over one question or the other during the examination. Despite all your preparation, you might find yourself simply unable to work out the solution.

So how do you tackle such a situation? This article is designed to help you by providing a set of tips you can use to implement a robust guessing strategy, which can help you save time while answering difficult questions during the exam. Here we bring a few tips on how and when to make a guess, and when to skip a question:

Does Guess Work Affect Your GMAT Score? If so, how and when?

There are three factors that affect your total GMAT score:

  • The total number of questions that you answer
  • The total number of questions you answer correctly
  • The difficulty level of the questions which you answer

However, since the GMAT is computer-adaptive in nature which weighs you according to the level of difficult questions answered, attempting as many questions as you can is beneficial for you. Frankly speaking, guessing is preferable to skipping a question. In case your guess is correct, you’re eligible to earn a point for that question. However, you need to be extremely careful while guessing the answer to a question. We would not advise you to make a wild guess for a question which you cannot figure out the correct answer for. It is advisable to narrow down the possible answer choices to draw closer to the correct answer.

If you’re unsure of the answer to a difficult question, make an informed choice of skipping it rather than wasting your precious exam time on analyzing it and finally making a rough guess. Don’t get stuck, as overthinking over one question can cost you valuable time. We would recommend you use the saved time on another question which you can crack easily, rather than struggling over one particular question.

Key Tips for Guessing or Narrowing Down your Choices:

#1: Eliminate unnecessary grammatical errors in the Verbal or AWA section: While you’re attempting the sentence correction questions in the Verbal section, you should ensure to automatically remove or rather ignore any answer choice that contains a grammatical mistake. Having said that, we intend to convey that even if you’re unsure the actual grammatical mistake in a question, scan the answer choices thoroughly for erroneous grammar. Once detected, eliminate that option from your list of a probable answer.

#2: Remove illogical answer choices/options: In the Verbal section, while you’re attempting the reading comprehension and critical reasoning questions, ensure to eliminate the illogical answer choices. Avoid falling into the trap to answers that speak about absolutes and include words like “every”, “all”, etc.

#3: Estimate the right answer to the question: While attempting the Quant section, take a quick look at the answers to the questions first. If all the answers are given in numerical values, you can try estimating the right answer to the question. Keep a close check on the questions which use the term”approximately” which could help you to estimate and detect the correct answer to the question.

As discussed above, one of the best options is to make an educated guess if you’re running out of time or stuck on a particular question. We strongly recommend to narrow down even one answer choice, which will improve your chances of getting the correct answer to a question. At the end of the day, all that matters is to get a high GMAT score and secure admission to a B-school or university of your choice.