In response to input garnered from multiple surveys of B-school faculty during the past four years by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), the GMAT will include an innovative new section designed to measure people’s ability to evaluate information from multiple sources.
The new integrated reasoning section, debuting in June 2012, will provide business schools with a window into how prospective students respond to the kinds of complex challenges they will encounter as managers in today’s information-rich business environment.
“The new integrated reasoning section of the GMAT will be a microcosm of today’s b-school classroom,” said Dave Wilson, president and CEO of GMAC in a statement. “These questions will provide critical intelligence to schools about the ability of prospective students to make sound decisions by evaluating, assimilating or extrapolating data.”
GMAC unveiled these changes to the exam in San Diego yesterday at its Annual Industry Conference, the largest gathering of graduate business school professionals in the world.
The integrated reasoning portion of the GMAT will capitalize on innovations in technology and assessments and feature questions that further enhance the validity of the test. These questions include information from multiple sources, such as charts, graphs, and spreadsheets. Examinees will be asked to analyze information, draw conclusions and discern relationships between data points, just as they must do in business school.
Overall length of the GMAT exam (three and a half hours) will not change. The Council says this new integrated reasoning section will be 30 minutes long and replace one of two essays that are part of the GMAT’s analytical writing section. Admissions officers have stated and GMAC research has shown that performance on the essays is closely aligned, making a single essay acceptable for predicting performance.
The GMAT exam’s verbal and quantitative sections will not change. As a result, when the new section is introduced in June 2012, tests will be scored on the same 200”“800 scale used today. Test takers will receive a separate score for the essay””as they do now””and another distinct score on the new integrated reasoning section.
For more information about these enhancements to the GMAT, check out the Next Generation GMAT FAQs here.
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