Ask Kate: Low Verbal on GMAT for Non-Native English Speaker

My GMAT score was 670, with Q49 and V33. English is not my native language, so it was a little challenging. That was my 2nd attempt – I screwed with timing in the first one.

How would think that can rate for business schools?

Low VerbalHi Irina, the score won’t prevent you from attending business school, but it does give you essentially a check minus for the GMAT result. Won’t kill you, but isn’t helping. If your essays are very, very strong and the school wants you, the 670 isn’t likely to keep you out. But if you have an average profile and an average set of essays, you may find it difficult to gain admission at a top 20 program.

Given that this was your second attempt, put extra, extra effort in to your essays and letters of recommendation. Make sure your recommenders understand how to address the letter properly. If they are non-native speakers, make sure any translations you have done are reviewed for tone and intent. Let your letters help you shine. Also, consider writing your essays in your native language and then getting help translating them. Work to your strengths.

You don’t have to sit for a third test, but if you choose to address your low verbal, focus your GMAT study plan on maximizing the 2-3 areas where you can make the most impact based on your natural strengths. For example, making SC structural – like math problems, or moving quickly in CR. Also address whichever 1-3 areas are your biggest weaknesses. If you read slowly, learn how to read more efficiently. Faster helps, but faster won’t mean better if you fail to comprehend so make sure you choose the right method for you.

Best wishes!



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Ask Kate: Non-Native English Speaker needs to Improve Verbal on GMAT

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