Big news from GMAC, the makers of the GMAT! Starting January 29th, you can order an Enhanced Score Report (ESR) that will contain all kinds of nifty data from your official GMAT CAT. I’ve got all of the details below, but first I’ll address a few frequently asked questions that will be on everyone’s mind.
- Costs $25.
- Is available for any GMAT taken from October 2013 forward, as long as you are still within the 5-year window from the date of the exam (which everyone is right now!).
- Contains great data such as: percentage correct by question type and certain content areas; average time by question type and certain content areas.
- Is available even if you cancel your score!
Why did they create this report?
The motivation was primarily student-driven. Test-takers naturally want more data about their strengths and weaknesses for a variety of reasons, some obvious and some not so (more on this later). Spokesperson Rich D’Amato, speaking on behalf of GMAC, told me that they have been beta-testing the ESR with students for the past year, exploring what students would want to see, how they would use the information, and how best to display that information visually so that it is easy to analyze.
In fact, Rich said something that impressed me enough to write down verbatim: “We spent a great deal of time listening.” So thank you to all of the beta-tester GMAT takers who gave their time and thoughtful opinions to help develop these reports, which will help all of the rest of us going forward.
Rich was also very clear that they are not done listening! As they hear more from you about what is useful and what else you would like to know, they will likely release even better future versions, so please speak up and send in your feedback.
What’s in the report?
The report starts by telling you all of the info you already have: your scores for the Quant, Verbal, and IR sections. (Note: the report will not include any special or extra information about your essay score or performance.)
The first page will also tell you your average time spent per question for each section. (Aside: I don’t find this particular information all that useful. If you finished a section roughly on time, then your average is going to be about the same as everyone else’s. If you didn’t finish a section, you already know that, so knowing the overall timing average doesn’t tell you much. But there are some later sub-sections for which the timing data is more useful.)
The next page starts to delve more into the detail of the test. For the Integrated Reasoning section, you’ll learn the percentage of questions that you answered correctly (very interesting!), as well as your average timing for correct vs. incorrect questions. That timing data could be quite useful if it shows, for example, that you spent way too much time on the incorrect ones.
Next, you’ll get some great data for Verbal and Quant. First, you’ll see your “rankings” across question type. For instance, in the below screen shot of a Verbal report, the (fictitious) test-taker scored in the 91stpercentile on CR (wow!) but only the 46th percentile on SC. Clearly, this tester will want to concentrate on SC and RC if she takes the exam again.