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Prep for the GMAT Focus and Your MBA

MBA candidates have many options to consider when choosing a standardized test to attempt (if any!) as part of a graduate school application. At MyGuru, we fully believe that the GMAT Focus is the best test to prepare for and take for consideration at any business-related graduate program that accepts it.

The Graduate Management Admissions Council (GMAC) spent years designing this new version of the GMAT to ensure that it intentionally tests only skills that applicants will need to succeed in any business school program and in their careers after graduation. All individual GMAT Focus tutoring at MyGuru relies on teaching content and tactics in such a way that recognizes this deliberately designed exam for what it is - a test of problem solving and logic that uses the languages of English and mathematics rather than what most applicants believe it to be, a rote textbook English and mathematics test.

Because the skills required to excel on the GMAT Focus such as mental math, problem solving, data interpretation, argumentation analysis, and reading comprehension will be valued by any successful manager, time spent studying for this exam will be more applicable to future academic and professional endeavors than would studying for any other business school admissions exam.

The MyGuru Edge for GMAT Prep

No two GMAT students are the same, so no two MyGuru tutoring sessions are either. Our GMAT Focus tutors' familiarity with what is covered on this version of the GMAT (yes, that includes the Data Insights section) means that they can build a uniquely targeted study plan with a personalized learning approach to help each student achieve their personal score goals.

Using dynamic online whiteboarding tools in a virtual meeting environment that requires no equipment other than an internet connected computer with a microphone and camera, MyGuru GMAT Focus tutoring features both content review and live practice problems. Using this parallel track of instruction, our instructors explain how particular GMAT strategies and tactics can be used for future problems with similar content.

The instructor's live-produced whiteboard notes are then shared as either a static .pdf (see example) after every session or kept on a private whiteboard for future reference and interaction in between lessons. Over time, these notes become a supplementary "textbook" of tactics and content to review that is unique to each student's lesson pland and learning style that isn't available anywhere else.

GMAT Whiteboard

Request a GMAT Focus Tutor

Customized GMAT Focus Study

Selecting a GMAT tutor is a major commitment, so we always offer a free 15-minute introductory videoconference with any potential instructor to help each student decide which path forward is best for their individual GMAT Focus and MBA application needs. While we can also conduct a phone call, we recommend a videoconference as it allows a greater opportunity to share exactly what separates MyGuru from all other GMAT prep companies. In that videoconference potential students will be able to:

  • Screenshare live with an experienced MyGuru GMAT Focus coach to learn how our dynamic whiteboarding tool works and to better understand the differences between our standard and premium online tutoring offers
  • Discuss a tailored GMAT Focus study schedule and possible supplementary resources that can help you continue your learning by completing intentionally curated homework assignments between live lessons
  • Share your experience with the GMAT, or any other standardized tests you may have taken in the past, to give fuller context regarding what you need from a potential tutor
  • Conduct a comfortable introductory conversation with your possible tutor to determine whether the personality fit is good and whether that instructor seems well-positioned to guide your GMAT Focus journey

GMAT Focus Tutoring Pricing & Package Options

At MyGuru, we believe on return on investment and do not require any commitment to start working together beyond purchase of a single hour of instruction. We offer several tiers of instruction and hours to maximize value. At each level, MyGuru students have gained admission (and merit-based aid!) from some of the top MBA programs worldwide.

  • Standard Online | $130 per hour | $600 for 5 hours | $1,400 for 12 hours | $2,700 for 24 hours
    Our most affordable option, and significantly lower cost than our most well-known individual tutoring competitors, MyGuru Standard Online GMAT Focus tutoring is uniquely tailored to each student's needs by an instructor with thousands of hours of tutoring experience and provides a .pdf of each lesson's whiteboard notes by email within 24 hours of each session.
  • Premium Online | $200 per hour | $900 for 5 hours | $2,100 for 12 hours | $4,000 for 24 hours
    Our best value, MyGuru Premium Online GMAT Focus tutoring provides full recording of every session to watch back for up to three months after the final lesson and a private read/write whiteboard where students can demonstrate tactics live in lesson and post questions or comments in between lessons to maintain contact with their instructor. Instructors will check the board at least once a day to respond as warranted.
  • Expert Edge Online | $250 per hour | $1,125 for 5 hours | $2,600 for 12 hours | $5,000 for 24 hours
    Seeking large score improvements or top decile results? Consider premium online tutoring with MyGuru's Director of Instruction, Stefan Maisnier, who has 20 years of tutoring experience helping students get admitted to top schools such as Harvard Business School (two students in the class of 2025!), Cambridge - Judge, Chicago - Booth, Dartmouth - Tuck, INSEAD, Northwestern - Kellogg, Penn - Wharton, and Stanford - GSB among others.

Our packages are designed with flexibility in mind to facilitate regular lessons of 60, 90 (most common), or 120 minutes depending on student availability and preference. Once a package of time is purchased, the cost for any additional time will remain at the prorated hourly package rate. We also refund unused hours minus a 5% processing fee and consider time unused provided at least 24-hour notice is given prior to a lesson for any reschedule or cancellation request.

Although it isn't recommended for the computer-administrated GMAT Focus exam and lacks the dynamic features of our online tutoring, in-person instruction is available in many major US cities upon request, at the same prices as our Premium Online instruction, pending tutor availability.

Your GMAT Focus Tutoring Guru

The MyGuru GMAT Focus tutoring team is led by our Director of Instruction, Stefan Maisnier. Unlike most GMAT experts, Stefan has an academic background more aligned with the Verbal section of the exam, possessing a bachelor's degree in communication from the University of Southern California and a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University. Because he hasn't taken a traditional math course in nearly two decades, Stefan steadfastly believes that the math skills needed to succeed on this exam can be learned (or relearned!) by just about anyone with a college degree - whether that degree is in art history or mechanical engineering. In fact, he is fond of pointing out quick and efficient logical solutions to problem solving questions that he calls "engineer breakers" because the technical solution is so complex that attempting it is a trap.

While he has been a full-time test prep professional for nearly a decade, and a part-time one for almost 20 years, his experiences in live sports television production at ESPN and Fox Sports, financial communications, international relations at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development in Paris, France, and academia at Northwestern and City Colleges of Chicago have allowed him to develop a uniquely engaging teaching style. It turns out that having experience in live broadcasting and communicating to a global audience helps to make even the most boring reading comprehension passage more interesting.

Stefan is proudest of keeping in touch with many of his past students and becoming good friends with a few. He enjoys the personal touch tutoring allows most, because it lets him help students overcome personal doubts on the path to success. He's always ready to supportively ask for more effort because "getting into a top business school is supposed to be hard!"  

Director of Instruction - Stefan Maisnier

GMAT Focus Summary

What's In

Three uniform sections of 45:00 each - Quantitative Reasoning, Verbal Reasoning, and Data Insights.

Quantitative Reasoning is now comprised solely of 21 Problem Solving questions.

Verbal Reasoning has 23 Reading Comprehension & Critical Reasoning questions.

The new Data Insights section contains the legacy GMAT Integrated Reasoning question formats & Data Sufficiencies.

What's Out

The 30:00 Analytical Writing Assessment essay has been removed from the test.

Plane geometry content is no longer part of the Quantitative Section and Sentence Corrections have been pulled from the Verbal Section.

Being unable to skip and return to questions is also a thing of GMAT past. Test takers can skip questions and change as many as three answers in any section.

How It's Scored

The GMAT Focus provides a single score on a scale of 205-805 to differentiate its results from the legacy GMAT 200-800 overall score scale.

While a 700 on the legacy GMAT is an approximately 87th percentile result, a 705 on the GMAT Focus is the 98th percentile.

Each individual section is scored on an identical 60-90 single point scale and is included in the overall 205-805 score.

Why Choose the GMAT Focus?

First, it's important to understand that "test-optional" in MBA admissions basically means "submit a score unless you are a Nobel Prize winner". While most admissions committees refuse to openly admit it, these scores still matter for all but the most exemplary candidates and every other applicant should look at the standardized testing portion of the application as an opportunity to shine rather than as an obstacle to avoid. After all, it's impossible to fix a subpar undergraduate GPA or change a less than stellar entry on a resume, but it is possible for just about everyone to buckle down and spend 2-4 months really studying to get a great GMAT Focus score.

Now that we've established that the standardized testing portion of the application remains important, why should you choose the GMAT Focus over the other tests that are available for MBA admissions? More than any other MBA admissions exam, the GMAT Focus encourages test takers to develop skills that pay dividends in the classroom and in the boardroom. While the GRE and Executive Assessment in many ways position themselves as "easier to prep" exams, in our expert opinion the time put into preparing for the GMAT Focus is well spent to encourage logical thinking and build basic mathematics skills that will be applicable to any future business endeavors.

Because it doesn't allow a calculator on its Quantitative section, the GMAT Focus requires successful takers to build a basic mastery of arithmetic and the ability to complete various mathematic calculations manually. While this can seem daunting to students who've relied on a calculator for years, understanding how to use factors of 10 to multiply or divide as well as how to manually manipulate fractions, percentages, and exponents facilitates a better understanding of basic business concepts such as profit, interest, and growth rates. This refresher will be invaluable as you begin accounting and economics coursework; a good GMAT Focus score can even help applicants avoid remedial math coursework as a condition of acceptance.

At the same time, the GMAT Focus has eliminated what many believe are the most arbitrary concepts from the GRE and legacy GMAT. Gone from the old GMAT are the need to study English grammar for the sentence correction questions and to brush up on plane geometry formulas for the legacy GMAT Quantitative section. In contrast, the GRE will still test incredibly obscure geometric concepts in its quantitative section and the Executive Assessment still contains 3-5 sentence corrections in its verbal section. Furthermore, the GMAT does not require the substantial vocabulary study that is necessary to excel on the verbal section of the GRE. Nothing is more arbitrary in the realm of graduate admissions exams than the GRE continuing to test knowledge of arcane antidiluvian verbiage that no one has used in centuries.

Lastly, when the GRE in 2023 switched to a shorter format exam, it had a very serious ancillary effect on the scoring mechanism. Because the GRE is adaptive by section and the first sections have been truncated by 40%, the margin for error on that exam, especially the quantitative section is incredibly small. Missing as few as five questions on the quantitative section can now render a 160 score for that most important section to MBA admissions committees out of reach. So, the "easier" exam now has a much harder scoring curve.

Proven GMAT Study Strategies

Preparing for a standardized test such as the GMAT Focus is more similar to preparing for a marathon than cramming for a final exam, so the first step is to commit to 1-2 hours of daily dedicated practice for at least six weeks. The best resources for that practice can be found directly from the GMAC test makers at where you can take a free diagnostic exam to determine your baseline score and learn how far you have to go to achieve your goal as well as what topics should be prioritized for study.

You'll want to procure a package of online problems for regular drills and each practice set should be fully self-reviewed to ensure that you are getting the most out of every exercise. Make sure to take a break between doing and self-reviewing your practice to avoid simply accepting an answer explanation rather than challenging yourself to determine why your answer was incorrect, while the correct answer was right instead.

Real GMAT Student Feedback

  • Luis R. I had a phenomenal experience with MyGuru. Stefan was very helpful and constantly available. Even though I had to switch tutoring appointments around constantly due to my job, he was always flexible and able to accommodate. As an international student I did not have much standardized test taking experience and never had a tutor before. However, Stefan really helped me improve my core skills and also helped me develop crucial test taking strategies. I was able to see improvements after every single tutoring session with him. Overall, he helped me improve my GMAT score by 90 points (from 650 in diagnostic test to 740 on the actual test), which was way above what I thought was possible. On top of that, Stefan refunded all of my unused tutoring hours that I had prepaid for, as I was able to reach my target score much sooner than expected. I highly recommend using MyGuru if you are preparing for the GMAT, I am convinced that I could not have achieved such a high score without Stefan's help. Thank you!
  • Loyd B. It has been a while since we have talked and I wanted to provide you with an update. I will officially announce that I will be attending Wharton this fall for business school. I want to personally thank you for playing a huge role in helping me make this dream come true. The GMAT prep and guidance Stefan provided paid off and helped me land my dream school. What you do works... Within our group, you have HBS (Wale), Stanford - GSB (David) and me (Wharton).
  • Max P. MyGuru was by far the most important resource in my GMAT prep! Without what I learned in my tutoring sessions I wouldn't have gotten close to the 760 that I ended up with! The sessions were incredibly informative and efficient. Each one was also tailored to my specific weak points unlike some other programs. Just 5 hours of instruction completely changed my view of the GMAT. The strategies that my personal Guru, Stefan, helped me master were applicable to not only the regular in person GMAT, but also the Online test. If you want to master the GMAT, MyGuru is your best option!
  • Lindsey A. I couldn't have asked for a better experience with MyGuru.  Prior to MyGuru, I initially used a Manhattan prep self-study program to prepare for the GMAT exam and was able to score a 680.  I wasn't satisfied with this score and was looking to push higher up to my goal score of 720.  I reached out to MyGuru for additional tutoring and Mark immediately paired me with Stefan. I worked with Stefan through videoconferencing which was a very easy and convenient way to receive tutoring. I would highly recommend using this option as you can receive tutoring anywhere (Starbucks, work office, home, etc.) and is very useful for people with a full-time job or a busy schedule.  Stefan created a customized schedule for me based on my needs and we did a crash course refresher over a month-long period in order to push my score into the higher percentiles. I enjoyed working with Stefan and he was very flexible with my schedule as I had to change a few schedule times due to work conflicts.  In addition, Stefan provided me with structured assignments and unique test taking tips that were much different than the standard Manhattan prep tips I had learned.  I appreciated this different way of thinking as it helped me feel more comfortable with the exam and improved my overall test taking abilities.  Stefan is strong in both categories (Quant and Verbal) which was very beneficial as he had specific tips for each section.  He specifically helped me to improve my overall timing, critical reasoning skills, sentence correction methodology, and data sufficiency abilities. Ultimately, I far surpassed my goal score of a 720 and received a 760.  I am more than pleased and very appreciative of the help that Stefan and MyGuru provided to me.  I highly recommend test takers try MyGuru instead of the general test-taking companies as you get more bang for your buck and a personalized experience which can lead to highly successful results, as shown in my case!
  • Aristarchus A. 100% recommend MyGuru for GMAT. I put off getting a tutor for the longest time due to the cost, but MyGuru was quite affordable and my tutor was quality. They have low cost for online, and you can save even more by joining a small group with some friends. I was able to raise my GMAT score by 100 points after 12 hours of online tutoring.
  • Dave K. MyGuru was a great fit for me. Because of my work schedule, I do not have a lot of free time during the week and it was very beneficial for me to have tutoring sessions over skype. I was able to work right up until the scheduled appointment, meet with the tutor (Stefan in my case) and then finish up some work afterwards. Stefan did a great job of walking me through the material and coaching me in test-taking strategies. Towards the end he really did become a guru for my studying effort and went above and beyond in strengthening my mindset and talking me through the pre-test jitters. I can't recommend Stefan and MyGuru enough. Stats: First practice test was a 660 final and official score was a 750. Made that improvement over the course of the eight week program with Stefan. Thanks again guys!
  • Mason C. Worked with Steve - was absolutely thrilled with the teaching. I went in looking for help on the most difficult of the quantitative questions on the GMAT, and Steve was able to break down the problems with me. His teaching improved my understanding massively in a short time, and as a result, my score improved by 50 points. Definitely recommend Steve and MyGuru for any tutoring needs.
  • Mahnoor R. After having scored a 610 in my first GMAT take to my dismay, and spending countless hours and money on online courses I turned to MyGuru from a LinkedIn review for tutoring and safe to say, getting tutored from Stefan was a game changer. He moved beyond discussing concepts and discussed test strategies and execution strategies which is exactly what I needed at that stage to get my score up. He was very clear and effective in his tutoring approach and the 700 score I finally got could not have been possible without him!

GMAT Focus Strategy & MBA Admissions News

MBA Admissions and GMAT / GRE Strategy Blog

Self-Paced GMAT Focus Course

Our brand new GMAT Focus prep course, authored specifically for this version of the GMAT by our Director of Instruction, Stefan Maisnier in partnership with Analyst Prep, is comprised of more than 20 hours of video content to provide an excellent foundation for your GMAT Focus journey. Many MyGuru tutoring students begin by self-studying with this course before choosing a package of tutoring hours. A free playlist of many lessons from this course is available on YouTube, while the full course is available by clicking on the adjacent image at a cost of only $39 per month.

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