Ask Kate: Verbal Abilities Affect Overall GMAT Score

Your GMAT study plan is critical.




i took my gmat today and score 500 (q43,v 18). i am shocked. i took gmat prep test a day before and score were almost similar 550(q44, v20) . i am a non native speaker of english please suggest when should i retake the test.

Verbal AbilitiesHi!

I’m not sure why you were shocked given how close the scaled scores are day to day. I wouldn’t want you to retake the test until you have prepared much better. Your verbal score will keep your overall score down. To give you an idea, a low verbal: verbal score < 34, prevents you from reaching 700 no matter how great your quant score is. The question shouldn’t be when to retake the test, but what to do. Your GMAT study plan is critical.

Focus your grammar lessons on subject-verb identification, parallelism, and pronouns. Grab a logical reasoning text that steps you through basic elements of arguments. I like the ManhattanLSAT Logical Reasoning book. Chapter 3 will rock your world.

Be patient. You have a long way to go, but I have seen (my own student!) go from 310 to 650, in 4 months. Anything is possible with the right effort.




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