Preparing for the GMAT exam is a time-consuming ordeal. It must have involved an investment of not only time but energy, emotional wit as well as mental alertness.
But what happens when the output does not match your expectations? What should you do if your GMAT score is not satisfactory? Can you retake the exam? And if yes, when and how? These are the questions that this guide is all about.
Why Retake the GMAT Exam?
The major reason why anyone will think of retaking the GMAT is when you know your score has not done well to reflect your ability. Sitting for the exam again can be for three main reasons which are listed below:
1. To make up for your inadequate preparation before taking the first one
You should retake the GMAT exam if you know you have not inputted your best into the first trial. There is a lot that goes into preparing for the exam and sometimes you will know you have not given your best. In a case like this, you should take the exam again.
2. When you know you can do better than the score you currently have
There has been a report of over 41% of GMAT examinees doing better by over 50 points when they retake. There is a high scope of improvement for people who score between 600 and 700 on their first try. Once you see your score fall short of the average for the exam total score, you should consider a retake. The higher your score the better your chance of bagging an admission.
3. When the school asks you to retake the GMAT
Sometimes, the Business school you are applying to may ask you to retake the GMAT. This can happen when you have all other parameters in your favor without the GMAT score. It is possible to be disadvantaged only with the average GMAT score and get lucky enough to be asked to retake.
Conclusively, you should retake GMAT if your score is not competitive enough for the MBA admission you seek. You should also do the GMAT exam again if you feel you have not given it your best or you know there is a section you didn’t finish or do well enough.
Does Retaking the GMAT look bad to Schools?
Taking the GMAT exam again to attain a better score is not bad at all to the schools. It will rather show that you are committed to gaining admission. Several applicants have multiple GMAT scores and the schools are used to that already. You will not be an odd one out, it will show how dedicated you are to improving yourself.
The important thing is to ensure that your score is improving on the retry not otherwise. The progressive improvement in score will go a long way to inform the schools of your quest to be better. It shows you can harness your strengths and work on your weaknesses to do more.
How many times can I retake the GMAT
Officially, you cannot sit again for the GMAT exam until sixteen days (16) after the previous one. There is a chance to retake GMAT up to five times within 12 months. That sounds nice in itself, right? But the shock is that you cannot take it more than eight times in your lifetime. Wonder what anyone would want more than eight tries for anyways.
Things to consider before you retake the GMAT
Three reasons for a retake of the GMAT have been established, but what other things should you consider to know what time to sit for the exam again?
Here are some important factors you should consider before going ahead to take the GMAT exam again:
1. How far is your score from your target?
You must have set a target score when you were preparing to sit for the GMAT, how far is your score from that target. The average improvement score of students that retake GMAT has been averaged at 30. If your score is around 15 points less than your target, you may decide against a retake. This is because the difference is not that large enough to take you off the average your program is going to accept. If your score is over 20 points less than your target, you should consider a retake.
On the contrary, a score that is less by more than 50 points is a wide bridge to cross. It will surely require a huge study time to make a score improvement of 50 points and above. You may at this point look for a lesser target score or a business score with a lesser average score requirement. You must be real with yourself.
2. How close is your application deadline?
The primary aim of taking the GMAT is to gain admission into the MBA program. There will be no use to retake the exam when the application deadline is close. Remember it takes about 21 days for your official test score to get to the school. So can the application deadline accommodate the 16 days of waiting and the days you need to prepare for the retake?
3. What can you improve on from the first Test?
Is there something you are sure you could have done better with a second chance? It could be a particular section or probably your general composure on the test day. Be sure there is a part you can channel your energy on to drive the improved score goal.
Bear in mind that retaking the GMAT is a chance for a better score. But ensure to consider the options well before embarking on the course.