Are you ready for an aggressive study plan? Do you have what it takes – namely time – to commit yourself to GMAT prep? Well, even if you didn’t answer a resounding yes to both questions, you may want to pay attention.
Below I’ve put together what I believe to be the most effective 30-day prep schedule for the GMAT. Again, it will not be easy. Expect to budget 15 hours/week. But if you have the time, the dedication, and the grit – and only 30 days – this is the plan for you (this schedule is perfect to use in conjunction with the Magoosh 30-day subscription plan).
Note: This is a general plan, with broad goals and instructions for every week. If you want more specific tasks and more guidance broken down by day, check out our step-by-step version.
Books and online resources:
GMATprep test (free download)
*Note: You may find that the number of lessons in this study plan doesn’t correspond exactly to the number of lessons in Magoosh. Don’t worry! You aren’t crazy and you aren’t missing any content. We are in the process of updating the lesson videos in Magoosh to make them better and more streamlined so you can use your time wisely. We will update our study plans soon to reflect the changes in Magoosh. We’ll make it clear when the change is coming so you are not caught off-guard!
Week 1 Schedule
Take GMAT Prep Test 1: Sweat through an actual GMAT. Better yet, learn where you are currently scoring, and set a target goal for the day of exam. Also, assess your strengths and weaknesses. And tweak this study guide where necessary. If you rocked the quant section, then make your prep verbal-centric. If you really are worried about the Integrated Reasoning section, you can also focus on that (I wouldn’t worry about this section too much–the rumor has it that b-schools are not really weighing the IR section very heavily as of now).
Sign up for the Test: Sounds obvious. Well, imagine priming yourself over the next 30 days for the test only to find out you’ll have to wait another two weeks for an appointment. Not the end of the world – but you may lose that precious momentum.
- Work through Magoosh Lessons
- Use MGMAT series for extra practice
- Keep tabs on your progress
- Complete and review GMAT prep test
Week 2 Schedule
Take Two Practice Tests: Use Manhattan GMAT. Focus on reviewing all your mistakes post-test. Be sure to space the tests out by a few days.
Put Your New Found Skills to Use: There is no material better than the OG guide (by the way, if you have the 12th. edition, feel free to use it in lieu of the 13th. edition. The questions are, for the most part, the very same ones). Do little drills of ten questions each, mixing it up with five questions from data sufficiency and five from problem solving. For verbal, create drills of 15 questions, breaking them up between sections.
- Work your way through the OG (described above)
- Take Manhattan Practice Test 2
- Tailor Magoosh to focus on certain areas
- Review tests and Magoosh material
- Complete half of the Manhattan Series Books and half of Magoosh Lesson Videos
- Go through Magoosh ebook, especially in those areas you feel you are struggling in most
Week 3 Schedule
Identify Weak Spots: Anyone can complete 500 practice questions. Knowing the right answer is the key. Try to figure out which questions you are missing and the reasoning behind the correct answer (you will also want to understand why your answer is wrong). Use forums such as beatthegmat.com and gmatclub.com to ask experts to dissect a question and elucidate a given concept.
Use Magoosh: Magoosh allows you to customize practice sessions based on specific concepts. Based on your weak spots create special drills. What’s great about Magoosh is each question is delivered on the computer with a timer tracking your speed. That’s just like the GMAT!
- Continue working through OG (should have finished about 500 total questions by end of week).
- Take Manhattan Test 3 and 4
- Use Magoosh (described above).
Week 4 Schedule
Take Final GMAT prep test: Gauge how far you’ve come in the passed three weeks or so. Figure out in which areas you are still struggling. Remember, return to the Manhattan Guides and Magoosh whenever necessary. They will provide you with the foundation to answer questions correctly.
Complete Manhattan Guides and Magoosh Lesson Videos: Remember, return to the Manhattan Guides and Magoosh whenever necessary. They will provide you with the foundation to answer questions correctly. It is also important to read through all the guides in MGMAT and watch all the Magoosh lesson videos. You wouldn’t want to miss anything!
- Complete Official Guide
- Complete all Magoosh questions (Watch necessary videos)
- Review incorrect answers to GMAT prep test using your newly acquired skills
- Address any lingering doubts on forums, send us a question through the Magoosh Help tab
- Complete going through Magoosh ebook for any and all of those areas in which you are not 100% confident
The day of the exam