test

Common Questions From Helpless, Hapless & Hopeless MBA Applicants

I am an MBA obsessor on his way to being a true savant. Admittedly, in the grand scheme of things, I am an MBA novice. I have only been harboring this desire for a mere 8 months.  Nonetheless, I have crammed my little head with more magnets and bozons than the Hadron collider. There are millions of particles shooting around in my head, and all these little data points have amounted to what I believe is a pretty refined understanding of the MBA admissions process. So it’s long in coming and here it is: a list of the most inane questions on the forums.

Don’t get me wrong; I understand why they ask these questions. Admissions anxiety is super high, and sometimes it feels like if you can just square away this one detail, everything will work out. Well, it’s probably not the case, but maybe I can help these poor souls out. Here are my responses to the helpless, hapless, and hopeless.1) I got a 7X0, should I take the GMAT again?

If you have lots of time and you think you can do better, sure, but isn’t it better to put your effort into your application? Ok, you’re not applying this year, then go for it.  But why are you asking us for permission when no one knows whether you’re going to improve. Do what you need to calm your nerves.  For most though, the short answer is, no, you did a good job, be happy.

2) I got a 500 on the GMAT what am I doing wrong?

The way you ask the question explains exactly what you’re doing wrong.  The GMAT is not a test of “doing” it’s a test of “thinking” and “evaluating”.  They don’t care that you memorized the formula for a trapezoid’s area.  They want to know if you can handle complex problems. Approach the problems as a puzzle that can be solved through clever reasoning, not by being a computer.

3) What kind of questions did you see on the actual test?

This one really kills me.  Hello, anyone in there? They mix up the questions so that this exact kind of “insider” scoop isn’t helpful.  One person may see 6 questions on probability and 4 on geometry and another only 1 for each.  To get a good score you need to be somewhat prepared for all the areas.  And then you need to be very prepared in most.

4) I am not score very high with GMAT verbal. Why is my problems?

You just answered your own question. You need to read, talk, listen, and do more in English!

5) I’m a reapplicant, should I reuse my essays from last year?

Hell to the no!  Please feel free to revisit key content, but your essays didn’t get you in last year, so what makes you think they’ll get you in this year?  Whether or not the essays were great, they weren’t enough, and the admissions people can and often do compare reapplicants’ essays. They’ll question just how into their school you are if you don’t put the effort into completing a new application.  More than anything, show them you’ve grown!  There’s a reason you can’t put your ex-boyfriend in a recycling plant and expect a new one to come out. I’m not sure why (my therapist says it won’t work), and the same is true of essays.  You just shouldn’t.