Selecting the Right GMAT Section Order

Effective July 11, 2017, the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) had announced that GMAT applicants have the option to select the order of the GMAT sections and the removal of test center profile which was earlier visible immediately on completion of the exam. In this post, we’ll take you through the option of how you can select the GMAT section order and benefit from this opportunity.

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Candidates who are taking the GMAT exam after July 2017 are now eligible to choose the order in which they wish to attempt the different sections of the test. Currently, the GMAT sections can be taken in three different orders. As an applicant, you can choose from the three GMAT section orders given below:

  • Alternative 1 (Original GMAT Order): Analytical Writing Assessment(AWA), Integrated Reasoning(IR), Quantitative Reasoning(QR), Verbal Reasoning(VR).
  • Alternative 2: Verbal Reasoning(VR), Quantitative Reasoning(QR), Integrated Reasoning(IR), Analytical Writing Assessment(AWA).
  • Alternative 3: Quantitative Reasoning(QR), Verbal Reasoning(VR), Integrated Reasoning(IR), Analytical Writing Assessment(AWA).

Before you start taking the exam, you would be presented with the three different order options, once you’ve completed reading through the GMAT exam guidelines and chosen the score recipients’ names. Thereafter, you’ll be given two minutes of time to select the order in which you wish to take the exam.

One more recent change which came into being is the removal of the test center profile. You no longer have to complete your profile by updating your personal and academics details after you’re done with the test. Instead, you need to fill the information prior to or post the exam on the official GMAT website. The purpose behind this exercise is to offer the test-takers with a smooth and simplified experience at the test center.

Picking the Right GMAT Section Order

Let’s quickly check how you can select the order of the GMAT sections that provide you with ample flexibility on the exam day and works best for you. As a matter of fact, your score recipients or prospective B-Schools do not have the access to see the order in which you’ve attempted the GMAT sections.

One key point to remember is that you should choose the sections order based on your own strengths and weaknesses and attempt that section which you think you’re comfortable with and capable of finishing soon. The bottom line is that you should pick the GMAT section order which works best for you as per your unique set of needs and skills. Decide upon a day before the exam date, which section you’re well prepared and practice the order of GMAT sections you choose to take up at the testing center.

Should I take Breaks During the Exam?

It is advisable to take some time off to relax and refresh your mind during the GMAT exam. You can opt for two 8-minute breaks in between the GMAT sections. In the table given below, we’ve illustrated the order of the breaks that you can opt for during the exam:

Order #1 Analytical Writing Assessment Optional 8-minute Break Quantitative Reasoning Optional 8-minute Break Verbal Reasoning
Integrated Reasoning
Order #2 Verbal Reasoning Optional 8-minute Break Quantitative Reasoning Optional 8-minute Break Integrated Reasoning
Analytical Writing Assessment
Order #3 Quantitative Reasoning Optional 8-minute Break Verbal Reasoning Optional 8-minute Break Integrated Reasoning
Analytical Writing Assessment

On a concluding note, having the option to select the order in which you wish to complete the GMAT exam certainly allows you with more flexibility and the power to make an informed choice. Try out the different available options, choose wisely, and do well!

Check out BYJU’S GMAT for a detailed look at how to plan your exam prep. You can reach us for any assistance related to GMAT by simply giving us a missed call at +918884544444, or can even drop an SMS. You can write to us at gmat@byjus.com.