Earlier this week, the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) announced that as of July 11, test takers worldwide will have the flexibility to customize their GMAT experience by choosing the section order in which they feel most comfortable taking the exam.
The GMAT has four sections. Once Select Section Order is implemented, test takers will select their desired section order at the test center on the exam date, immediately prior to the start of the exam. Test takers will be able to choose from three options:
- Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative, Verbal (original order);
- Verbal, Quantitative, Integrated Reasoning, Analytical Writing Assessment; or
- Quantitative, Verbal, Integrated Reasoning, Analytical Writing Assessment.
This new option is just the latest in a continuation of the steps GMAC has implemented in recent years to enhance the test takers’ GMAT experience, including:
- the ability to cancel scores online after leaving the test center and the enhanced score reinstatement policies (March 2016)
- removing cancelled scores from school score reports; allowing candidates to retake the GMAT exam after a 16-day time period rather than the previous 31-day retake period; and enabling test takers to access their Official Score Report online using their date of birth instead of an authentication code (July 2015)
- introduction of the GMAT Enhanced Score Report, which provides test takers access to an in-depth analysis of their overall GMAT performance (January 2015)
- introduction of GMAT Score Preview, enabling test takers to preview their unofficial scores before deciding whether to report or cancel them (July 2014).
“The idea of being allowed to choose the section order had been commonly requested by test takers,” said Ashok Sarathy, GMAC’s vice president of product management. “We conducted a pilot in 2016 to test this feature and received overwhelmingly positive feedback, with 85 percent of participants surveyed expressing that this new feature boosted their confidence prior to even taking the exam. Our pilot findings also concluded that taking the exam in different section orders continues to maintain the quality and integrity of the GMAT scores.”