GMAT’s Tougher Scoring System: Navigating the New Percentile Landscape

GMAT test takers should brace themselves for tougher scoring when they sit for the exam next month, as the new scoring system will make it harder to score 700 or higher.

For example, a score of 750 on the current GMAT, which puts a test taker in the 98th percentile, will convert to just a 695 on the new GMAT Focus Edition. This is because the test scores in general were being inflated and everyone was receiving top scores. According to GMAC, the test becomes useless if the top percentile is overcrowded.

What does this mean for test takers?

If you are planning to take the GMAT in the near future, it is important to be aware of this change. Students, admission officers and recruiters alike will have to adjust their thinking.

The new GMAT scoring system makes percentile rankings even more important, especially in the early days. A 695 is now a 98th percentile score, equivalent to a 740 or 750 on the old scale. This means that a sub-700 score should not be dismissed, as it may still be very competitive. Admissions officers will need to use percentile rankings to assess students’ abilities relative to their peers.

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