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Continuing Education Programs

About GMAT & USC

We have the answers to your questions about the content, structure and the types of questions you'll see on the the GMAT, as well as the costs and where to take the exam. Graduate school is the next logical step and we have the resources you need to begin the process.  

Common Questions about the GMAT

What is the GMAT Test?

The GMAT is a standardized assessment that helps business schools assess the qualifications of applicants for advanced study in business and management. Schools use the test as one predictor of academic performance in an MBA or other graduate program.

The GMAT measures basic verbal, mathematical, and analytical writing skills that you have developed over time. It does not measure specific content from undergraduate study.

Who should take the GMAT exam?

Anyone looking to enroll in a graduate level business program will likely need to take the GMAT. Check with the programs you are considering and find out whether or not they require or accept the GMAT.

What is tested on the GMAT?

Integrated Reasoning
This new section was added most recently and it is designed to measure your ability to evaluate information presented in multiple formats from multiple resources skills you already use, and skills you need to succeed in our data-rich world. This is a 30 minute section.

Analytical Writing Assessment
The AWA consists of one writing task – the analysis of an argument. You are allowed 30 minutes to complete the essay.

Quantitative Section – Math Section
This section contains 37 multiple-choice questions of two types – data sufficiency and problem solving.  This is a 75 minute section.

Verbal Section –
This section contains 41 multiple-choice questions of three types – reading comprehension, critical reasoning, and sentence correction. This is a 75 minute section.

The exam takes approximately 3 1/2 - 4 hours to complete with breaks.

How is the GMAT scored?

The scale for the GMAT is 200 – 800.  

An additional score of 0-6 will be given for the Analytical Writing.

500 is approximately the 50th percentile of all test takers.

What is a good score?

It depends. The 50th percentile for everyone that takes the test is approximately 500. However, a good score is defined as one that gets you into the program you want, not by a number. Check with the programs you are considering, and ask them if they have a minimum and an average for everyone in the program to get a better idea of what your goal should be.

How much does it cost to take the GMAT?

The fee for the test is $250 and the test is given at a testing center. Check the GMAT website for cancellation, rescheduling, and other fees.

How do I register for the test?

The test is given at testing centers and it is typically offered Monday-Friday, depending on the availability of the testing center. Check the GMAT website to find a testing center near you.

Can I take a practice test?

Practice tests are available free. Download the Powerprep software directly from the GMAT website.

How do I contact GMAT?

You can contact GMAT between the hours of 7:00 am – 7:00 pm Central Time at 1–800-717-4628 or visit the GMAT website.


UofSC Graduate School Resources

The University of South Carolina offers a wide range of master's and doctoral degrees and provides the resources you need to help you make your decision. 


Preparing for the GMAT is a great first step toward business school and if at any time you have questions or need more information, you can ask an expert.