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GMAT: Conquer Quantitative Assessment
IV Ranga Rao
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September 27, 2007

Part I: Crack Analytical Writing
Part III: Tomorrow

If you're planning on pursuing an MBA degree abroad, you'll need to take the GMAT. In this, the second part of this three-part series covering the sections of the GMAT, we discuss the quantitative section and present some examples of the kind of questions you should expect.

The quantitative section aims to test your quantitative abilities and mathematical skills. You will be given 75 minutes to complete 37 questions which are divided into two types.

Problem Solving
These types of questions require you to solve mathematical problems. You will need to be adept at using mathematical skills gained up to high school level. You may have to draw upon arithmetical, algebraic or geometrical concepts to solve these problems. Your quantitative reasoning ability is also tested.

Sample of a Problem Solving Question
Directions
Solve the problem and indicate the best of the answer choices given.

Numbers
All numbers used are real numbers.

Figures
A figure accompanying a problem solving question is intended to provide information useful in solving the problem. Figures are drawn as accurately as possible EXCEPT when it is stated in a specific problem that the figure is not drawn to scale. Straight lines may sometimes appear jagged. All figures lie in a plane unless otherwise indicated.

Question
If u > t, r > q, s > t, and t > r, which of the following must be true?

I. u > s
II. s > q
III. u > r

(A) I only
(B) II only
(C) III only
(D) I and II
(E) II and III

Answer
(E)

Data Sufficiency: These types of question will give you incomplete mathematical problems. You have to then identify why this problem is incomplete i.e. what data is missing, which if provided to you will enable you to solve the problem. You will be presented with the problem and sets of data. You will then have to typically choose from the options which state whether each data set individually allow you to solve the problem, you need both data sets to solve the problem or neither data set will be sufficient to solve the problem. This requires more skill and practice compared to the problem solving questions.

Example of a Data Sufficiency Question
If a real estate agent received a commission of 6 percent of the selling price of a certain house, what was the selling price of the house?

(1) The selling price minus the real estate agent's commission was $84,600.
(2) The selling price was 250 percent of the original purchase price of $36,000.

(A) Statement (1) ALONE is sufficient, but statement (2) alone is not sufficient.
(B) Statement (2) ALONE is sufficient, but statement (1) alone is not sufficient.
(C) BOTH statements TOGETHER are sufficient, but NEITHER statement ALONE is sufficient.
(D) EACH statement ALONE is sufficient.
(E) Statements (1) and (2) TOGETHER are NOT sufficient.

Answer
(D)

These two types of questions do not occur in separate sections and can be presented in a random order.

Part I: Crack Analytical Writing
Part III: Tomorrow

The author is the Director - Office of Admissions and Financial Aid, Indian School of Business, Hyderabad, India.


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