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We live in an era of disruption. Technology changes in a matter of weeks, even days now. Experts would argue that we are undergoing a new kind of industrial revolution,  instead of changing the world with automated machines, we are using data and information to do it. It affects many aspects of life, including workforce and job market.

Many jobs have been lost or decrease in value thanks to automation. However, many new jobs have been created as well, thanks to new technology. Demand for data analysts and data scientist are increasing. However, these new jobs usually require someone with highly specialized skill and knowledge.

To meet the demand from the job market, we must constantly improve our skill and credential. There are many ways to do these: joining formal training, volunteering in research, interning before applying for the real job, etc. However, the most credible way to upgrade your skill and knowledge is to continue your higher education. Post-graduate school today offers many programs, including some that are highly specialized.

Continuing education overseas is becoming more popular, especially most of the top-ranked post-graduate schools are located in the US or Europe.

Most of the post-graduate schools in the US and Europe require the applicant to take GRE test or GMAT test and you need to have a minimum score for the eligibility of applying. Here are five things to prepare for your GRE/GMAT test to get the required score.

1. Select the date carefully

When you register for GRE/GMAT test, you can choose the date to take the test depending on the seats available. If you are confident enough you can choose a  is a pretty closer date for the test. Mostly, students take one month period between registering and taking the test so they can prepare more and have a better chance of passing their score goals.

We actually advise you to take an early start in preparing for GRE/GMAT. If you haven’t done any GRE/GMAT preparation program, we would recommend you to take at least two or three months before you plan to take the exam.

2. Hire a tutor

Hiring tutor helps you in four ways.

First, you will be more motivated, since you remember that you have paid for all these tutoring session. You wouldn’t want that money to get wasted.

 Second, tutor will ensure that you have set some time aside to focus learning on the test material. On your own, you can make a schedule by yourself, but if you are bad with sticking to the plan, usually you’ll find yourself ditching the schedule because there is no direct consequence for it unless you are disciplined. Hiring tutor is like automating your schedule to study, so you won’t get tempted to ditch your study time because now you have direct consequence – standing your tutor up and losing money.

Third, the tutor can review and re-explain all the materials tested in GRE/GMAT for you. Again, you can do it by yourself, but if you’re taking the test a few years after graduation, you may forget bits and parts of it. 

Four, tutor are familiar with the test and knows the test very well, so he or she can teach you strategies in reaching your goal.

3. Deep understanding of materials

The difficulty level of GRE and GMAT are high. GMAT specifically test your quantitative ability, as well as your ability to read, analyse, and interpret data in various forms like in table, chart, and diagram. Your problem-solving skill will be measured as well. Some say math in GRE is more straightforward than in GMAT, however, GRE also has its fair share of difficult questions, especially in Quantitative Comparison part.

Whichever of the test you pick, preparation time is a necessity. Practise on  samples tests of  GRE/GMAT . By doing so you can later find out your area of improvement. 

4. Review test strategies

Test strategy is just as important as understanding materials. Imagine test as war, but with a time limit. You need to factor everything: your strength, your weakness, your goal, the time limit to achieve your target score.

For every area of the test, there are different strategies. For example, when answering multiple choice question, make sure to read the choices first before reading the question, so you can get clue or pointer on what to look in the question text. Another example, use STOP method while reading comprehension – or looking specifically for Structure, Tone, Organization and Main Point while you read the text, not just read it from top to bottom and then forgetting all about it when you reach the question.

 If you have a tutor or study group, you can discuss what will work the best. Try to ask people who have given the test previously. Do online mock tests and see if the result differs for each of the strategies. If you find your score improving, the strategy works for you

5.  Practice, practice, practice

Finally, the above points won’t help you much if you don’t practice. By practicing, you are training your brain to be more familiar with the test, and your brain will not be overwhelmed by all new information during the actual test.

There are many practice materials out there, both free and paid. GRE and GMAT have official study guide, which includes sample test material. You can find more on other website focusing on GRE/GMAT preparation. You can also join study forum, dedicated members usually leave a lot of materials to help other test-takers.

Do all the five preparation and you can ace your test and get a higher score than your target. Do you have other preparation tips for GRE/GMAT? What do you think help you the most?

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