New GMAT Exam Feature Puts Students In Control

The Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) have announced a new effort to enhance the GMAT exam experience for test takers.

The ‘Select Section Order’ is a new feature that will provide candidates the flexibility to customise their GMAT experience by choosing the section order in which they feel most comfortable taking the exam.

GMAC Vice President of Product Management Ashok Sarathy said that test takers were responsible for the section order idea.

“We conducted a pilot in 2016 to test this feature and received overwhelmingly positive feedback, with 85 percent of participants surveyed expressing that this new feature boosted their confidence prior to even taking the exam.

“Our pilot findings also concluded that taking the exam in different section orders continues to maintain the quality and integrity of the GMAT scores.”

The GMAT has four sections. When implemented, test takers will select their desired section order at the test centre on exam date, immediately prior to the start of the exam. Test takers will be able to choose from three options:

  • Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative, Verbal (original order);
  • Verbal, Quantitative, Integrated Reasoning, Analytical Writing Assessment; or
  • Quantitative, Verbal, Integrated Reasoning, Analytical Writing Assessment.

These new changes will be a continuation of the steps GMAC has implemented in recent years to enhance the test takers’ GMAT experience, including:

  • the ability to cancel scores online after leaving the test center and the enhanced score reinstatement policies (March 2016),
  • removing cancelled scores from school score reports; allowing candidates to retake the GMAT exam after a 16-day time period rather than the previous 31-day retake period; and enabling test takers to access their Official Score Report online using their date of birth instead of an authentication code (July 2015),
  • introduction of the GMAT Enhanced Score Report, which provides test takers access to an in-depth analysis of their overall GMAT performance (January 2015), and
  • introduction of GMAT Score Preview, enabling test takers to preview their unofficial scores before deciding whether to report or cancel them (July 2014).

“The GMAT exam shows business schools that the test taker is serious about earning a graduate business degree and demonstrates the individual’s commitment and readiness for the rigors of a graduate business program,” Sarathy said.

Select Section Order will be available to test takers worldwide beginning July 11, 2017.