They say if you have planned it well, half your battle is already won! So if you want to ace in the rat race and get into that dream B-school of yours, you better clear your head. Before applying to B-schools and before giving the GMAT you need to keep in mind certain important points. Let’s work it backwards, considering that you want to submit your application this year:
1. Deadlines (round 1)
Deadline is a nasty word that you just can’t afford to overlook. For most B-schools, it occurs between August and October ( with the bulk of them being in Sept-Oct). So that’s number one in the take-GMAT-and-conquer procedure for Indian students.
2. Essays and LORs
It would be a good idea to devote at least 30-45 days to writing your essays and fine-tuning them (Yes, they are equally important as getting that high GMAT score). You will need a few weeks to reach out to your recommenders, get them to write the letters of recommendation, review them if necessary, and have them ready for submission to the shortlisted B-schools. This means that you should begin writing your essays by the start of August.
3. B-Schools Research
You may already know which schools you want to target, but a majority of Indian students usually do this research (or re-do the research) after they have their GMAT scores ready. Researching a B-schools doesn’t simply mean checking the rankings and B-school websites – it should ideally include many conversations with alumni and current students of the school, opinion seeking on forums, seeking clarifications from the AdCom, etc. It’d be a good idea to devote at least a month to this process. This means that you should start researching your B-schools by July at the very latest.
You need to have your final GMAT score ready by June-end to apply to B-Schools. And considering the friendly retake policies of the GMAT, many students end up taking the GMAT more than once to improve their scores. If you get it right the first time, kudos! But it is better to be safe and have the leeway to retake it if necessary.
So basically, take your first attempt at the GMAT no later than May!
We sincerely hope that you are at it. May the force be with you, you and you too!