The GMAT's Quantitative Section

Some of you are considering pursuing a graduate degree in business in order to earn a masters in business. The first step in that journey is to take the GMAT, the Graduate Management Admission Test. This blog will explain the second of this three-part test; the Quantitative Section.

Quantitative Section

This section of the GMAT consists of 37 multiple choice questions which must be completed in 75 minutes. The two kinds of questions deal with problem solving and data sufficiency. The Quantitative Section is scored from 0 to 60 points and measures the ability to reason quantitatively, solve quantitative problems, and interpret graphic data.

Problem-solving and data-sufficiency questions are mixed together throughout this section of the test, but both kinds of questions require a knowledge of arithmetic, elementary algebra, and commonly known concepts of geometry.

Problem Solving

In this part of the test, the examinee is being tested on their quantitative reasoning ability through multiple-choice problems in arithmetic, basic math, and elementary geometry. There are five choices for each question, and some problems require plain mathematical calculations while the rest are presented as real life word problems requiring mathematical solutions. (For an example, go to Sample Problem-Solving Question.)

Data Sufficiency

This portion of the test measures quantitative reasoning ability using an unusual set of directions. A question is posed with two associated statements providing information that might be useful in answering the question. The examinee must decide whether either statement alone is sufficient to answer the question, whether both are needed to answer the question, or whether there is insufficient information provided to answer the question.

These questions are designed to measure your ability to analyze a quantitative problem, determine which information is relevant, and decide at what point there is enough information to solve a problem.

Created specifically for the GMAT, these unique math questions consist of the question followed by two numbered statements and the following choices:

(A) If statement 1 alone is sufficient to answer the question, but statement 2 alone is not sufficient.

(B) If statement 2 alone is sufficient to answer the question, but statement 1 alone is not sufficient.

(C) If both statements together are needed to answer the question, but neither statement alone is sufficient.

(D) If either statement by itself is sufficient to answer the question.

(E) If not enough facts are given to answer the question.


(For an example, go to Sample Data-Sufficiency Question.)


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