Preparing for Test Day

It would be a shame if you went through the effort of studying and then handicapped yourself on test day. Here are a few tips (outside of studying) to help you hit your top score:


I cannot overstate enough the importance of sleep. Lack of sleep is scientifically proven to make your mind slower. Try to sleep at least 8 hours for the two nights before your exam. This will ensure that you are maximally fresh and on top of your game for test day.

Locate the Test Center in Advance

If you are late to your test, at best you will have less time to complete it and, at worst, might not be able to take the exam at all. Take ten minutes to look up the test center’s location and how to get there. This will allow you to properly plan for test day.

Arrive Early

If you arrive early to the testing location, you have time to use the restroom, get a drink of water, and get comfortable. If you arrive late, you risk dramatically impacting your score. Add 15 minutes to your expected travel time and use that as your guide.

Use the Restroom Beforehand

The GMAT has limited time for breaks. If you go over this allotted time, time is automatically deducted from your testing time. Plan on using the restroom immediately before the test to keep your bathroom breaks to a minimum. Additionally, try not to drink coffee for an hour or two before the test; coffee helps you focus, but unfortunately also acts as a diuretic.

Calm Down

I have seen so many people psyche themselves out on test day. On test day, nerves can only hurt you. Take a deep breath. Clear your mind. Remember, you’ve prepared for this, there’s nothing else you can do now, but rock the test. The most effective test-takers don’t stress about what they should have or could have done. They focus on the task at hand.