The first step in your GMAT preparation is likely taking a free GMAT test. The GMAT mock test allows you to assess your current standing, determine how far you are from your target score, identify areas of strength and weakness, and plan your study strategy accordingly. Practice tests are also important for gauging your test readiness after learning the concepts and assessing your progress during your preparation. Thus, taking a reliable mock test that closely simulates the actual GMAT and provides accurate insights to help you plan your preparation effectively is critical.
A good GMAT practice test should have a similar format, structure, and difficulty level to the actual GMAT and offer detailed feedback on performance. In this article, we’ll compare four popular free GMAT practice tests – Official GMAT practice tests, e-GMAT SIGma-X mock, Veritas, and MGMAT – based on the key factors that determine how good a mock test is.
So, if you’re looking for the best free GMAT practice test or GMAT mock test, you’re in the right place. Keep reading to make an informed decision about which free GMAT mock test to choose.
- What factors determine the quality of a GMAT practice test?
- Closeness to the actual GMAT
- Depth of the insights provided
- Conclusion: Which of the free GMAT mock tests are good? and how you should decide?
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Looking for the best GMAT free practice test can be a daunting task. With so many options available, it can be challenging to determine which ones are worth your time and effort. That’s why we want to make it easy for you to trust us and our advice in this article.
We’ve extensively researched the various mock tests available in the market to draw the conclusions presented in this article. We stand behind our findings, and we want you to see for yourself why our insights are worth considering. That’s why we’ve also provided the proof we used to come to our conclusions.
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For example, our pre-thinking strategy in CR helped Jim improve his score from the 39th to the 94th percentile, our meaning-based approach in SC helped Rohan, a non-native speaker, score a 750, and our six process skills in quant helped Richa improve from the 27th to the 87th percentile.
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What factors determine the quality of a GMAT practice test?
In order to compare the different mock tests, let us first understand the factors that determine the quality of a GMAT mock test. We shall then use these factors to compare the mocks. Essentially, two main factors determine how good a mock is:
- Closeness to the actual GMAT
- The scoring architecture of the test
- Ability to accurately determine the ability using block-based decision making
- Using GMAT-like questions
- Depth of insights provided by the mock
- Where you faltered
- Why you faltered
- How can you improve
To get a detailed comparison of each GMAT mock test on the above parameters, watch the following video:
Let us now evaluate each of these factors.
Closeness of the GMAT practice test to the actual GMAT:
The GMAT exam is a complex and adaptive test that evaluates test takers’ abilities in five key areas: Critical Reasoning, Reading Comprehension, Sentence Correction, Arithmetic, and Algebra/Geometry. The scoring architecture is such that to assess a test taker’s abilities accurately, the GMAT test engine uses five independent engines, one for each of these abilities. Additionally, the test employs block-based decision-making, with each section of the exam consisting of four different blocks. The difficulty level of questions in each block depends on the test taker’s performance in the previous block, and the performance is contingent on getting more questions correct than incorrect in the block, not individually, as is commonly believed. Therefore, a good and accurate GMAT mock test must replicate these features, including the five independent engines and block-based decision-making. Also, it must use GMAT-like questions to accurately evaluate the ability of the students.
Let us now evaluate how each mock test fares in terms of scoring architecture, ability to accurately determine the test takers’ abilities using block-based decision-making, and usage of GMAT-like questions.
Scoring architecture of the actual GMAT:
GMAT free practice tests and the e-GMAT SIGma-X mock test both use a scoring architecture that features 5 independent ability engines, which mirrors the structure of the actual GMAT. However, MGMAT and Veritas Prep do not utilize this same architecture. One of the features of the independent search engine approach is that your sub-sectional score in one area will not be impacted by your performance in other areas. For instance, if you answer SC questions correctly, you will continue to see more difficult SC questions, even if you are struggling with CR and RC. Both GMAT practice tests and e-GMAT demonstrate this. On the other hand, MGMAT and Veritas Prep employ a different approach where poor performance in one subsection affects your score in other areas, resulting in easier questions being presented as you progress, regardless of the sub-section. Thus, you cannot get an accurate measure of your abilities, and consequently, you cannot pinpoint the sub-sections and the topics that are your strengths and weaknesses. These insights are extremely crucial for you to plan your preparation.
Block-based decision making: Official GMAT Mock Test
GMAT free practice tests and e-GMAT employ a block-based decision-making approach, where the difficulty level of questions in each block is determined by your performance in the previous block rather than individual questions. However, this approach is not utilized by MGMAT and Veritas. In contrast, their approach involves the difficulty level of each question changing based on whether you answer it correctly or incorrectly. As a result, the difficulty level can increase or decrease as you progress through individual questions rather than blocks.
Usage of GMAT-like questions in GMAT Mock tests:
At e-GMAT, we have created a carefully designed question bank with over 2300 GMAT-like questions that have been rigorously crafted to simulate the actual exam experience. But don’t just take our word for it – our Scholaranium GMAT question bank has received over 200 five-star reviews on GMAT Club, making it the most popular GMAT quizzing platform in the world!
Our SIGma-X mock tests are no exception, each containing a question bank of 150 hand-picked questions selected from our GMAT-like Scholaranium database. With this approach, we can deliver a mock test experience that accurately gauges your performance in the same way that the actual GMAT does.
Don’t settle for mediocre preparation – trust e-GMAT to provide you with the highest quality resources to help you ace the GMAT. Take a free trial of our Scholaranium question bank or the free SIGma-X mock and experience the e-GMAT difference for yourself!
Summary: Comparison of free GMAT Mock Tests
Here is a table summarizing all the above features with respect to each free practice test:
|Parameter||SIGma-X||GMAT Prep||M-GMAT||Veritas Prep||GMATClub Tests|
|GMAT-like scoring architecture||✓||✓||✗||✗||✗|
|Accurately calculating ability||✓||✓||✗||✗||✗|
In summary, while the GMAT free practice test is undeniably the gold standard for accurately measuring your abilities, e-GMAT comes incredibly close and offers a wealth of actionable insights that you won’t find in the GMAT free practice test. In contrast, the Veritas and MGMAT mocks, although not utilizing the same architecture, can still be reliable predictors of your abilities, provided that your sub-sectional skills are relatively consistent.
Let us now look at the second main factor that determines the quality of a mock test:
Depth of the insights provided by free GMAT mock tests
When it comes to GMAT preparation, simply taking mock tests that closely mirror the GMAT and give you an accurate score prediction is not enough. To truly make progress and achieve your target score, you need mock tests that go above and beyond just score prediction and accuracy. The best GMAT mock tests should provide detailed insights that allow you to identify your strengths and weaknesses and develop a targeted plan for improvement. These insights focus on three key areas: where you went wrong, why you made mistakes, and how you can improve.
Let’s now dive into a comparison of each free GMAT practice test based on the key insights that students expect from a GMAT mock: where and why they faltered and how they can improve. In section, we shall compare the insights provided by the ESR, e-GMAT SIGma-X mock, Veritas, and MGMAT.
Note- GMAT Prep/Free GMAT practice test doesn’t provide ANY insight into the performance. It merely tells you whether you got the question correct/incorrect and the time taken. Therefore, we have considered the ESR for this analysis. The ESR can be purchased post your GMAT exam at an additional cost of $30.
Does the mock test tell – Where did the student falter?
To effectively pinpoint where a student faltered, a mock GMAT test should provide detailed sub-sectional abilities. For instance, it should differentiate between the different abilities within Verbal, such as Sentence Correction, Critical Reasoning, and Reading Comprehension. Furthermore, the mock test should provide insights into each individual question, indicating whether the student answered correctly or incorrectly.
The e-GMAT SIGma-X mock provides insights at both the sub-sectional level and the question level, whereas the other tests lack something or the other. The ESR doesn’t give a question-wise breakdown, although it gives the sub-sectional abilities. On the other hand, MGMAT and Veritas give a question-wise breakdown but do not give the sub-sectional abilities.
Does the mock test tell – Why did the student falter?
To understand why a student faltered in an exam, analyzing the block-wise progression at both the sectional and sub-sectional level, the time spent on each block, and the time spent on each question, especially the incorrect ones, are crucial insights.
Block-wise progression and time spent on each block reveal where students wasted or had insufficient time and whether their accuracy dropped for hard questions in a particular sub-section. On the other hand, data on time spent on individual questions provide insights into the ability. For incorrect questions, too little time spent may indicate a lack of time, while too much time spent may indicate an ability issue in the particular sub-section.
e-GMAT offers a graphical representation of block-wise progression at both sectional and sub-sectional levels, along with insights into the time spent on incorrect questions separately. We go one step further by providing additional insights into factors such as timing influence, luck factor, and rush-through factor. This provides a more accurate understanding of a student’s performance, helping them eliminate any factors other than their ability that may inflate or deflate their score.
ESR provides block-wise progression for quant and verbal sections, but it doesn’t provide detailed information on sub-sections or timing insights at block and question levels.
Both Veritas nor MGMAT don’t offer a visual representation of block-wise progression and timing. However, they do provide valuable insights into the time taken for each question. MGMAT even provides the ideal time taken to solve each question, which makes it easy to compare the actual time taken with the ideal time. However, the drawback is that they don’t provide timing data for incorrect questions separately, which makes it difficult to draw inferences.
Does the mock test tell – How to improve?
Once the student has a clear understanding of their weaknesses, they can easily develop a plan to improve. At e-GMAT, we have a clear and concise plan for students to improve their weaknesses and achieve their desired score. Our Scholaranium quizzing platform and concept lessons are powerful tools for improving problem areas.
For students who are just beginning their preparation, we recommend using our PSP tool to determine the optimal path based on strengths and weaknesses identified by detailed mock insights. Students then go through the video concepts as recommended to them.
For students who have completed all concepts and taken a mock to check test readiness, we provide an easy 4-step process to plan their path of improvement:
- Take a 30-question custom quiz on the Scholaranium platform.
- Isolate the problem areas using the insights provided in the quiz.
- Review appropriate course content.
- Confirm improvement with an ability quiz on the Scholaranium platform.
On the other hand, MGMAT and Veritas Prep have limitations in their approach to identifying and improving weaknesses. MGMAT requires a painstaking analysis process to identify areas of weakness, and the lack of ability quizzes and custom quizzes makes it difficult to practice and make measurable progress in the isolated weak areas. This forces students to make holistic progress, which takes 4x-5x longer, instead of targeted progress to improve their scores.
Similarly, Veritas Prep does not provide topic-wise information, making it impossible to isolate areas of weakness, and the lack of ability quizzes makes it difficult to track progress. This also forces students to make overall progress with no information regarding weak points, which takes even longer than MGMAT.
Furthermore, MGMAT and Veritas Prep do not offer block-wise representation, making it impossible to understand whether improvements are required in test-taking ability and/or warm-up effect. This lack of detailed insights can delay the improvement process and make it harder for students to achieve their desired scores.
Summary: Depth of insights provided by different free GMAT practice tests
Here is a table summarizing the features of each mock with respect to the insights they provide:
|Parameter||Sub-parameter||SIGma-X||GMAT Prep||M-GMAT||Veritas Prep||ESR|
|Insights into individual questions||✓||✓||✓||✓||✗|
|Why?||Time spent on every question||✓||✓||✓||✓||✗|
|Time spent in comparison with difficulty level for each sub-section||✓||✗||✗||✗||✗|
|Time spent on incorrect questions||✓||✗||✓||✓||✓|
|Performance across Blocks in a section||✓||✗||✗||✗||✓|
|Performance across Blocks in every sub-section||✓||✗||✗||✗||✗|
|How?||Topic-wise weakness identification||✓||✗||✓||✓||✗|
Conclusion: Which of the free GMAT mock tests are good? and how you should decide?
In conclusion, when it comes to GMAT free practice tests, two factors matter the most- how closely the test resembles the actual GMAT and the depth of insights provided. All four tests we compared have their own unique features, e-GMAT replicates the GMAT scoring mechanism and provides detailed and valuable insights. Although GMAT Prep is the most reliable platform for accurately predicting your score, it lacks detailed insights. On the other hand, MGMAT and Veritas can be good predictors of your overall performance, provided your sub-sectional scores do not vary a lot. But they require more time to infer insights, and identifying sub-sectional and topic-wise weaknesses through them is very difficult. If you want to progress holistically, they can still be a good option. However, if you want to target your weaknesses and get precise insights, e-GMAT’s free practice tests are the way to go.