Preparing for GMAT

Completing the GMAT is an entry requirement for starting the Full-Time MBA at Imperial, and you will need to achieve a score of at least 600 to be considered for the programme.

To help you prepare we have put together some information and FAQ’s, as well as tips, strategies and tools that you can use to achieve the best score possible.


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What is the GMAT?

The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) measures key skill areas for MBA candidates through four distinct sections:

  • Quantitative reasoninga 62-minute adaptive exam made up of 31 questions on data sufficiency and problem solving
  • Verbal reasoning: a 65-minute adaptive exam made up of 36 questions on reading comprehension, critical reasoning and sentence correction
  • Integrated reasoning: a 30-minute exam made up of 12 questions on the analysis and interpretation of data
  • Analytical writing: a 30-minute exam comprised of one piece of writing analysing an argument


    How is the GMAT scored?

    The quantitative and verbal reasoning sections are scored out of 60, integrated reasoning out of eight and analytical writing out of six. You will also receive a percentile score for each component which indicates how your score compares to other test takers from the past three years.

    Overall scores are between 200 and 800, and your score report will give details of your scores and percentile ranks across all of the four areas being tested.

    Why is the GMAT important?

    The GMAT helps business schools to assess academic potential and gives a consistent point of comparison between candidates from a diverse range of academic and industry backgrounds, which helps with admissions decisions. GMAT is normally a mandatory requirement for top business schools and having a strong score ready when you apply shows your commitment to undertaking an MBA and can help you to stand out from the crowd from the outset.

    It is also one part of the MBA application process you can control – through hard work and preparation, you can increase your score.

    How will Imperial use my GMAT score?

    For the Full-Time MBA at Imperial, achieving a GMAT of at least 600 is a requirement for starting the programme. If you have a test score ready with your application then it will add weight to your application – particularly if you’ve achieved a strong overall score and well-balanced results across the different elements. You can apply without having taken the test, but it would be a condition of an offer if you are made one further down the line.

    We receive applications from a wide range of candidates with different academic and professional backgrounds, and we use GMAT results to help us consistently select students who are ready for the rigour of our intensive one-year MBA. In addition, having prepared for the GMAT test, you will feel more ready to get back into the classroom after several years away from education.

    What are the benefits of taking the GMAT early?

    Completing the GMAT is an entry requirement for starting the Full-Time MBA at Imperial.  There are multiple deadlines throughout the year for our September intake, however entry to the programme is competitive and you should apply as early as possible to maximise your chances of being accepted.

    Applying early will also increase your chances of receiving a scholarship. The GMAT Excellence Awards recognise and reward the highest achievers, with a £5,100 award for candidates who achieve an overall score of 750 or higher. If you would like to be considered for this award you will need to submit your MBA application by 19 June 2020.

    Ready to take your GMAT?

    Manhattan Prep offer a 10% discount on their full online or in-person preparation courses for people considering the Imperial MBA. Simply register your details with us and we will email your code to you.

    I set out an hour of practice every day. In the latter part of my prep I worked on the section my mock test results were highlighting as an area of weakness. The most difficult challenge during my prep period was doing business travel two weeks before the exam, which I balanced by taking a four-day stretch off work before my test date.
    Full-Time MBA 2019-20
    Anirudh Dastidar