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How to Prepare for GMAT in Three Months-A Reference Guide

Updated on 25 April, 2023

Mrinal Mandal

Mrinal Mandal

Study Abroad Expert

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Each year, GMAT cut-offs soar across leading business schools, with increasing competition. While many institutions may have cut-offs falling in the range of 650-730, meeting this score does not guarantee admission in your dream B-school. There are even instances where candidates sat again for the GMAT after scoring more than 700 in order to land a place in the 99th percentile, which is considered a safer bet. 760 and upwards (99th percentile) is a great score, making it easier to find a place at the world’s top business schools. Do you want to achieve this score or higher? To ensure the same, a good GMAT study plan is necessary. 

Three months are usually sufficient to study for the examination. A comforting fact helps put this into perspective. GMAT top scorers usually devote more than 120 hours or more in studying for the GMAT. While the duration of each study session will depend on your circumstances, you may divide 120 hours by 12 weeks of study. It works out to a rather feasible 10 hours each week. Even if you’re working or studying, you can always a lot 2-3 hours in daily preparation while maximizing your time on the weekends. Now that you’re up for the challenge, here’s looking at the preparation strategy for GMAT preparation. 

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How to Prepare for GMAT in 3 Months? 

How to prepare for GMAT in just three months? Mentioned below is a table enlisting the preparation strategy against each GMAT section that one can follow:

GMAT Section Preparation Strategy
Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA)
  • Practice organizing and presenting your essay in the best way possible. A good introduction, conclusion, and logical connections or transitions between ideas are vital. 
  • Back up your statements with supporting examples/illustrations while writing. 
  • Work on your linguistic expression, building your vocabulary, phrases, and grammatical prowess. 
  • Respond to essay prompts in the manner of a discussion with complete sentences and structural cohesion. It should not seem like a bare outline. 
Integrated Reasoning 
  • Graphics Interpretation- Read the synopsis under the graph carefully. Watch out for discrepancies between the text and graph units. Interpretation, inferences, integration, or relationships 
  • Two-Part Analysis- Sometimes the same answer may be relevant for both columns. Note the columns carefully, along with the nature of the tasks, i.e, dependent or independent. Some questions may contain two dependent or individually demarcated parts. 
  • Table Analysis- Use the pull-down menu to sort data on the basis of varying criteria. Judge answers based on the specified condition and whether it is met. 
  • Multi-Source Reasoning- Do not let subject matter familiarity influence your responses. Analyze every data source with care. Your ability to choose necessary data influences your results. 
Verbal Reasoning 
  • For Reading Comprehension questions, practice finding the core idea of the passage. Note key phrases and words, understanding how they are linked to major arguments or facts. 
  • Critical Reasoning questions require a closer understanding of the question and the task. If it is based on an argument, find the part which is the conclusion. 
  • Sentence Correction requires an approach where you attempt to fix what seems wrong with the original sentence. Analyze all the answer choices and examine the structural and grammatical suitability of the same. 
Quantitative Reasoning 
  • Data Sufficiency questions require brushing up on geometry and algebra concepts. You have to choose whether the question has scope for a single value or multiple ones. 
  • Problem-Solving is not just about arithmetic, geometry, or algebra but also about logic and reasoning. Read every sentence carefully to avoid errors. Questions that need approximation should be answered after skimming through the answer options. 

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While getting your preparation strategies in order is a vital task, so is creating a good GMAT study plan for three months. Here is a sample to help you get the idea: 

WeekGeneral TasksQuantitative ReasoningVerbal ReasoningIntegrated ReasoningAnalytical Writing AssessmentHours
1Understanding GMAT scoring pattern, structure, and sections + Diagnostic Practice TestList the major concepts, topics, and question types for preparation, along with weaknessesList out the major concepts, topics, and question types for preparation, along with weaknessesList out the major concepts, topics, and question types for preparation, along with weaknessesList out the major concepts, topics, and question types for preparation, along with weaknesses8-10
2Sectional Test

Mathematical formulas, concepts like ratios, percents, exponents, etc.


Also going through problem solving and data sufficiency questions

Sectional TestSectional TestSectional Test10-12
3Sectional TestSectional TestSentence Correction & Critical Reasoning Questions with Solutions + Reading Comprehension Questions + Grammar Rules + Vocabulary and ReadingSectional TestSectional Test10-12
4Sectional TestPractice Test + Result Review + Finding Weaknesses and Working on ThemPractice Test Result Review + Finding Weaknesses and Working on ThemSectional TestSectional Test8-10
5Sectional TestAdvanced Data Sufficiency & Problem Solving Questions + Solving Problematic Questions from Practice TestSectional TestSectional TestSectional Test8-10
6Sectional TestSectional TestPracticing Advanced Sentence Correction, Reading Comprehension and Critical Reasoning questions + solving problematic questions from practice test + reading on section strategies and approaches to various questionsSectional TestSectional Test10-12
7Sectional TestSectional TestSectional TestStarting with Core Concepts, Question Types, Graph Reading and Sample QuestionsSectional Test10-12
8Sectional TestPractice Test & Result AnalysisPractice Test & Result AnalysisPractice Test & Result AnalysisSectional Test8-10
9Sectional TestSectional TestSectional TestAdvanced Questions + Practicing Difficult Questions from Practice TestSectional Test8-10
10Sectional TestSectional TestSectional TestSectional TestFamiliarity with Section + Sample Prompts and Essays + Finding Templates + Daily 2-3 Essays for Practice12
11Organizing all Revision Material Across SectionsPractice Test + Result Review + Noting Tough Problems and How to Solve ThemPractice Test + Result Review + Noting Tough Problems and How to Solve ThemPractice Test + Result Review + Noting Tough Problems and How to Solve ThemPractice Test + Result Review + Noting Tough Problems and How to Solve Them 
12Noting Examination Rules and Planning for the Test CenterLight Revision of Core ConceptsBrief Look Through Question TypesBrief Look Through Question TypesBrief Glance into Sample Essay Prompts7-8

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Tips to Follow the GMAT 3-Month Study Plan 

Now that you have a 3-month GMAT exam preparation blueprint in place, how do you stick to the same? Here are some tips you can use. 

  • Time Utilization- Smart time management is the key to implementing a study plan successfully. Have everything else in your life scheduled efficiently to avoid missing study or practice days. Begin with 8-10 hour study schedules each week and scale it up thereafter. Do not overtax yourself at the beginning. 
  • Diagnostic Practice Test- Note the word diagnostic. While it may seem unnecessary to sit for a practice test before you even start studying, this has multiple benefits in store for you. You will know where you stand in terms of your knowledge of major subjects, what you should practice, and how much to prepare. Hence, an initial diagnosis is highly recommended. 
  • Suitable Preparation Materials- Gathering the right resources is of paramount importance. Get the GMAT Official Guide along with preparatory materials like the Manhattan Prep All the GMAT Bundle, 7th Edition, or the Kaplan GMAT Prep Plus 2022-2023, along with the GMAT Official Advanced Questions. There are several books for every GMAT section, along with online e-books and resources. 
  • Study Calendar- Create a calendar for your GMAT study plan, allocating time for important concepts in each section, practice tests, reviews, and more. You can use this as a ready reckoner to track your progress throughout your study period. 

Remember that motivation and sincerity are prerequisites for success in the GMAT. Most of all, enjoy what you learn. You may perceive it as a personal academic and growth journey without always focusing on the end result. It will automatically help you get into the zone, as they say! Get your books and resources in order, build your study plan, and get started at the earliest. Nothing is impossible if you work hard and stay committed to your goals. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

Are three months enough for GMAT preparation?

Three months are usually considered sufficient for GMAT preparation. It ensures sizable time to cover basic concepts, go through almost all question types, and take a few practice tests. 

Is GMAT 600 easy?

Getting 600 or more on the GMAT is not easy by any means. It necessitates attention to detail, smart preparation, and extensive study, not to mention critical thinking and logical reasoning aptitude. 

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Mrinal Mandal

Study Abroad Expert

Mrinal Mandal is a study abroad expert with a passion for guiding students towards their international education goals. He holds a degree in mechanical engineering, earned in 2018. Since 2021, Mrinal has been working with upGrad Abroad, where he assists aspiring students in realizing their dreams of studying abroad. With his expertise and dedication, he empowers individuals to navigate the complexities of international education, making their aspirations a reality.

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The above tips are the Author's experiences. upGrad does not guarantee scores or admissions.