How To Prepare For GMAT Verbal Reasoning ?

How To Prepare For GMAT Verbal Reasoning ?

How To Prepare For GMAT Verbal Reasoning ?
Prashant Thapa

Preparing for the GMAT Verbal Reasoning section requires a focused approach, strong analytical skills, and a solid understanding of English language nuances. 

This article provides a detailed roadmap to enhance your GMAT Verbal Reasoning performance, covering essential strategies, study materials, and practical advice.

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The GMAT Verbal Syllabus

The GMAT Verbal section comprises three major question types, each focusing on distinct language skills. Here's a detailed overview of the GMAT Verbal syllabus:

Reading Comprehension

This section evaluates your ability to understand and analyse complex written passages. You'll encounter passages from various subjects, including science, social sciences, and business. Critical aspects of the Reading Comprehension syllabus include:

  • Identifying main ideas and supporting details
  • Recognising the author's tone and purpose
  • Drawing inferences and making logical conclusions
  • Understanding the structure and organisation of passages

Critical Reasoning

Critical Reasoning questions assess your logical reasoning and analytical skills. You'll be presented with short arguments or scenarios and asked to evaluate their strengths, weaknesses, and underlying assumptions. The syllabus covers:

  • Identifying premises and conclusions
  • Recognising logical fallacies and flaws in arguments
  • Strengthening or weakening arguments
  • Assessing the impact of new information on arguments

Also, See 5 GMAT Preparation Best Practices In 2023

Sentence Correction

Sentence Correction tests your grammar and language proficiency. You'll be provided with sentences containing underlined portions, and you'll need to identify the grammatically correct option or the option that improves the sentence's clarity and coherence. The syllabus includes:

  • Grammar rules and conventions (subject-verb agreement, tense, modifiers, etc.)
  • Sentence structure and parallelism
  • Clarity and conciseness
  • Idiomatic expressions and diction

How To Prepare For GMAT Verbal Reasoning?

Mastering the GMAT Verbal Reasoning section is crucial to achieving a high score. This section evaluates your comprehension, reasoning, and grammar skills. Let's delve into practical techniques to excel in GMAT Verbal Reasoning:

Understand the Question Types

The GMAT Verbal Reasoning section comprises various question types, including Sentence Correction, Critical Reasoning, and Reading Comprehension. Familiarise yourself with these formats and their specific challenges.

Strengthen Your Reading Skills

Enhance reading speed and comprehension by regularly reading diverse materials, such as newspapers, articles, and academic texts. Practice summarising main ideas and key details to improve retention.

Build a Strong Vocabulary

Expand your vocabulary by learning new words daily. Use flashcards, vocabulary apps, and context-rich reading materials. A rich vocabulary helps you understand complex passages and answer questions accurately.

Practice Active Reading

Engage with the content actively while reading. Identify the author's tone, purpose, and main argument. This skill is essential for Critical Reasoning questions.

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Analyse Sentence Structures

For Sentence Correction questions, grasp the fundamentals of grammar, syntax, and sentence structures. Regularly practice identifying errors and selecting the correct options.

Develop Logical Reasoning Skills

Critical Reasoning questions test your ability to analyse arguments and identify flaws. Hone your logical thinking by solving puzzles, brain teasers, and practising argument evaluation.

Time Management

Allocate time wisely during the GMAT Verbal Reasoning section. Set time limits for each question and practice pacing yourself to ensure you complete the section within the allotted time.

Simulate Test Conditions

Regularly take practice tests under timed conditions to simulate the actual exam environment. Analyse your performance, identify weaknesses, and work on improving them.

Review and Learn from Mistakes

After each practice test, thoroughly review your answers, especially the ones you got wrong. Understand your mistakes and learn from them to avoid repeating them in the future.

Utilise Official GMAT Materials

Utilise official GMAT Verbal Reasoning preparation materials, such as the Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review. These resources provide authentic practice questions and insights into the exam format.



1. Practice Regularly: Consistent practice is critical to improving verbal skills.

1. Cramming: Avoid last-minute cramming, as it won't lead to meaningful improvement.

2. Understand Question Types: To approach them effectively, learn the different question types (SC, CR, RC).

2. Ignoring Weaknesses: Remember to avoid topics you struggle with; address weaknesses head-on.

3. Read Widely: Regular reading improves comprehension and vocabulary.

3. Relying on Instincts: Avoid answering questions solely based on instincts; use reasoning.

4. Use Official Material: Work with official GMAT practice questions and exams.

4. Overlooking Explanations: Be sure to answer explanations, even for questions you get right.

5. Time Management: Practice answering questions within the allocated time limits.

5. Spending Too Much Time: Don't get stuck on a single question; manage your time wisely.

6. Review Mistakes: Analyze incorrect answers to understand your errors and learn from them.

6. Neglecting Review: Only move on with reviewing your practice tests and mistakes.

7. Understand Context: In reading comprehension, focus on understanding the passage's main idea and purpose.

7. Focusing on Details: Avoid getting bogged down by intricate details in RC passages.

8. Master Grammar: Develop a strong understanding of English grammar for sentence correction.

8. Second-Guessing Always: Only correct answers with valid reasons; initial instincts are often correct.

9. Apply Logical Reasoning: For critical reasoning, use logical thinking to evaluate arguments.

9. Making Assumptions: Avoid making assumptions not supported by the text in CR questions.

10. Simulate Real Test Conditions: Practice under test-like conditions to manage stress.

10. Skipping Directions: Don't neglect reading instructions and directions before starting.

11. Sleep and Nutrition: Prioritize sleep and maintain a healthy diet for optimal cognitive function.

11. Burning Out: Avoid overstudying; give yourself breaks to prevent burnout.

12. Positive Mindset: Maintain confidence in your abilities and stay positive.

12. Self-Doubt: Don't let self-doubt hinder your performance; believe in your preparation.

FAQs About GMAT Verbal Reasoning

How is the GMAT Verbal Reasoning section scored?

The GMAT Verbal Reasoning section is scored on a scale of 0 to 60. The final score considers the number of correct answers, the difficulty level of questions answered, and the time taken to complete the section.

Can I improve my verbal reasoning skills in a short time?

Yes, improvement is possible with focused and consistent practice. Identify your weak areas and work on them systematically. Regular exercise, combined with practical strategies, can lead to noticeable progress.

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Is memorising vocabulary words enough for the GMAT Verbal section?

While a strong vocabulary is essential, the GMAT Verbal section assesses various skills, including reading comprehension and logical reasoning. Focus on a holistic approach that covers all question types.

How can I manage test anxiety during the GMAT exam?

Practice mindfulness techniques, deep breathing, and positive visualisation to manage anxiety. Familiarity with the test format and content through rigorous preparation also boost confidence.

Are there breaks between GMAT sections?

Yes, the GMAT exam includes optional breaks between sections, allowing you to recharge. Use these breaks to relax, stretch, and refocus your mind for the upcoming Verbal Reasoning section.

Can I use a calculator during the GMAT Verbal Reasoning section?

No, the GMAT Verbal Reasoning section does not allow the use of a calculator. It primarily assesses your reasoning and comprehension skills without relying on calculations.

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