The quantitative section of the GMAT section is about a candidate's mathematical abilities and problem-solving skills. Understanding the GMAT Quant syllabus in detail is essential for effective preparation and maximising your score potential. In this blog, we will delve into the specific topics covered in the GMAT Quantitative section, providing you with a comprehensive overview to aid in your study plan and test-taking strategy.
The GMAT Quantitative section consists of questions: Problem-Solving and Data Sufficiency. These questions evaluate your proficiency in various mathematical concepts and ability to apply them in industry. By familiarising yourself with the GMAT Quant syllabus, you can identify areas of strength and weakness, start your study plan accordingly, and confidently approach the exam.
There are 21 multiple-choice questions in the GMAT Quant section, and you have 45 minutes to complete this section on the GMAT.
The GMAT Quant syllabus mainly comprises one question type:
Problem Solving (PS): Candidates will be asked standard questions on Algebra, Arithmetic, and Modern Math.
Arithmetic |
Algebra |
Modern Math |
Numbers and Number Line |
Algebraic expressions and equations |
Statistics |
Factors, Multiples, Divisibility and Remainders |
Linear Equations |
Overlapping sets |
Exponents |
Quadratic Equations |
Counting Methods |
Ratio and proportion |
Inequalities |
Probability |
Percentages |
Functions and Graphing |
Sequences and series |
Rate work and Mixture Problems |
Arithmetic is one of the three areas in the GMAT Quant syllabus. These questions test your understanding of the properties of traditional mathematics operations.
A number system is a system that is used to express numbers. A number line represents points on a straight line, with each point corresponding to a real number, visually representing the order and magnitude of numbers. All real numbers, including positive, negative, integers, zero, fractions, rational and irrational, are tested on the GMAT. You will also be tested on even, odds, primes, co-primes and composite numbers. These numbers can be represented on a number line, visually representing the order and magnitude of numbers.
Factors or divisors are numbers that evenly divide another number; a multiple is the product of a given number and some other natural number. For example, 5 perfectly divides 10 without leaving a reminder. Hence, 5 is a factor of 10, and 10 is a multiple of 5 because 5 x 2 = 10. Divisibility determines if one number can be divided by another without a remainder, the amount left over.
Exponents represent the repeated multiplication of a number with itself. It’s written as a small number to the right and above the base number, indicating how many times the base is multiplied by itself. For example, 2 multiplied by itself 3 times is 2x2x2 or 23. 2 here is the base and 3 is the exponent or power of 2.
Ratio and proportion describe the relationship between two quantities. A ratio shows how much of one thing there is compared to another, written as “a to b” or “a:b” or “a/b”. A proportion says that two ratios are equal.
For example, dividing $150 between two people, A and B, in the ratio 2:3 implies that A receives two parts, whereas B receives three parts of $150 when $150 is equally divided into 2 + 3 or 5 parts. So, every ratio unit here is equal to $30. A received $60, and B received $90. 2 times 30 and 3 times 30.
The word “per cent” means “ out of 100” or “per 100.” The word “per” can be thought of as denoting the bar of a fraction. A percentage is a number or ratio expressed as a fraction of 100.
So, 40% implies 40/100 or 2/5.
3/4 as a percentage is 3/4x 100, which is 75 %.
Rate, work, and mixture problems involve figuring out how quickly tasks are completed, how substances are combined, or how fast something moves. Fundamental strategies, such as distance = speed (rate) x time or work = rate of working x time, are employed to solve these questions.
Algebra is one of the areas in Quant in which you have to deal with setting up of simple equations, solving word problems, breaking down inequalities and decoding functions.
An algebraic equation contains two algebraic expressions which are separated by an equal sign (=) in between. The main purpose of solving algebraic equations is to find the unknown variable in the given expressions.
A linear equation is a type of equation that, when graphed, forms a straight line. It only includes variables raised to the first power, meaning there are no exponents higher than one. For example, 2x + 4 = 8 is a linear equation with one variable x.
A quadratic equation is a type of algebraic equation that can be written as ax2 + bx + c = 0, where ‘x’ represents an unknown quantity, and ‘a’ and ‘b’ are specific known numbers. In these equations, the coefficient ‘a’ is never zero.
Equations and inequalities are both ways of comparing mathematical expressions. In an equation, two expressions are considered exactly equal, shown by the “=” symbol. In contrast, an inequality shows that expressions might not be equal, using symbols like “>”, “<“, “≤”, or “≥” to indicate these relationships. For example, 2x+3=0 is an equation whereas, 2x=3>0 is an inequality.
Functions describe how one set of numbers or objects relates to another. On the GMAT, you would also find special characters such as *, #, @, $, &, and so on that are used to define specific functions.
For example, a # b could be defined as (a + b)2 and so 2 # 3 = (2 + 3)2 = 52 = 25
Graphing these functions puts the relationship into a visual format, using a coordinate plane for easy understanding and analysis.
Modern Math is not about mugging up formulae and using them to solve questions. Most of the questions in this area just require you to know basic concepts of statistics, counting (permutations and combinations), probability, sets, and their applications.
Here are the Modern Math topics covered in the GMAT syllabus:
Statistics involves the key skill to read, analyze, and interpret data. GMAT will test you on basic statistical tools such as arithmetic mean, median, and mode.
Overlapping sets or Venn diagrams helps in structuring large volumes of data, especially when you have items that belong to more than one group. GMAT tests you on two-set and three-set Venn diagram-based word problems.
Counting methods are systematic approaches for enumerating objects, which cover strategies like permutations and combinations to account for various arrangements or selections.
Probability is stated as a percentage less than 100 or a fraction less than 1; it is found by dividing the number of desired outcomes by the number of possible outcomes. A great example is the coin flip and its probable consequences.
For example, when you toss an unbiased coin, there is a 50% chance of either a head or a tail. So the probability of having a head or a tail is equal to 1/2
A sequence is a list of objects or events listed successively, whereas a series is the sum of a sequence of terms. It is a list of numbers that can be added.
That’s all there is to the GMAT Quant section.
In conclusion, understanding the GMAT Quantitative section syllabus is crucial for success on the exam. Reviewing the topics covered in Problem Solving and Data Sufficiency questions and practising a wide range of mathematical concepts can strengthen your skills and improve your performance on test day. Use resources such as practice questions, study guides, and online courses to supplement your preparation and target areas needing improvement. With diligent study and strategic practice, you can master the GMAT Quant syllabus and achieve your desired score.