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GMAT Grammar

You may feel confident with the most commonly tested grammar rules on the GMAT Sentence Corrections - subject-verb agreement, verb tense, pronoun reference, pronoun number, misplaced modifiers, parallelism, idioms, false comparisons, and quantities. It’s hard to imagine any other grammar rules that could possibly be tested, but you can bet the GMAT test writers are pretty exhaustive. Here are four grammar rules that don’t receive as much attention; you’ll need to master these if you’re going for a top score.

1. Subjunctive Mood

You won’t see the subjunctive mood tested on college entrance exams like the SAT and ACT; it’s purposely reserved for the GMAT for good reason. Most of the English verbs we use are in the indicative mood - that is, verbs that have happened, are happening, or will happen. The subjunctive mood is used to express wishes or possibilities that have not happened.
The most common subjunctive verb that you might encounter is were, the subjunctive form of was.

Example 1: If he were athletic, he could make the football team. (He is not actually athletic, so the verb communicates an idea that does not really exist).

Notice that “If he was athletic…” would be incorrect, even though you may not reconize such an error in speech or writing.

Example 2: The teacher requires that you be present on the final day of class.
The indicative conjugation would be “you are present,” but since “requires” triggers the subjunctive mood, we use be.

Example 3: She recommended that each student bring his or her homework every day.
The indicative conjugation would be “each student brings,” but since ‘recommended’ triggers the subjunctive, we use bring.

Notice that these verbs are often followed by subjunctive clauses:

Ask, demand, insist, order, prefer, recommend, request, require, suggest, wish


2. Possessives

The GMAT sometimes tests the difference between a possessive and a contraction. While this may sound simple to some of you, the distinction can be expectedly confusing. After all, its is the possessive of it, and it’s is the contraction of it is. That’s right, its is a possessive, and it lacks the requisite apostrophe.

Example 1: When our home computer lacks its virus protection, it’s more vulnerable to infection.

3. Split Infinitives

The rule of the split infinitive may be the ultimate nitpicky grammar rule, but it is still a rule you should know. Simply put, when writing an infinitive verb (e.g. to go), do not place any word in between “to” and the verb (e.g. to boldly go). Perhaps the most eye-opening example of a split infinitive is from the opening of Star Trek: The Next Generation:

Example 1: Its five year mission: to boldly go where no man has gone before. (As long as we’re studying grammar, you should probably also notice that this sentence is a fragment.)

Example 1, corrected: Its five year mission is to go boldly where no man has gone before.
Note that the split infinitive error will probably not be the main error in a sentence, but you can be confident that a sentence with a split infinitive is usually incorrect.

Since these rules don’t constitute the majority of the sentence corrections, I’d study them last. Knowing them will help you pick up some valuable extra points.

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Top 31 MBA Programs + Analysis of 24 Industries (United States)


We analyze the MBA Curriculum, Class Profile, Total Cost and Post-MBA Salary of Top 31 MBA programs in the US.

+ Industry Trends

+ Future of Aerospace, Agriculture, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Automobile, Clean Tech, Education, Energy, Fashion, Financial Services, Insurance, FinTech, Government, Healthcare, Life Sciences, Military, Manufacturing, Maritime, Media/Advertising, Technology, Tourism, Trade, Transportation and Logistics, Virtual Reality (VR), and Augmented Reality (AR).


Pages: 327

Reviews

"I have not reviewed many books for MBA Admission consulting companies but doing it now to give all applicants a brief idea on what the book covers. The book includes 31 top MBA programs - almost all the top schools you have heard or considering for your MBA application. Each chapter is categorized by US States where there is at least one top MBA program. So you have California and Massachusetts with the most number of MBA programs and several states with one top program (Washington, Minnesota, Washington D.C., Connecticut, Virginia, and Maryland) and other states with two to three MBA programs. The book focuses on four aspects of an MBA program - curriculum, cost, class profile and post-MBA salary. For me, the breakdown of the cost and post-MBA industry was useful to make my decision on selecting the top 5 programs for 2017-18. It is a fascinating read in an industry where consultants overprice for their expertise. I recently bought a 30-page guide for $49. Compared to the obvious observation in that book, the 300+ page, MBA in US - the Ultimate guide is a goldmine of information and analysis." - Verified Purchase (21st June 2017)

"I bought the ultimate guide after a friend recommended it for me. The guide covers a lot of ground on the history of each prominent US states and goes into the reasons why a certain industry emerged from each state. In addition to the analysis of the economy, trends and expected changes in the next 5 years, the book features top MBA programs in each state with an extensive study of its curriculum. Ultimate guide is an essential reference book for MBA Applicants if they want to shortlist MBA programs based on value and cost, and not just ranking. " - Verified Purchase (14th June 2017)

"Should be a required reading before applying for an MBA. School events and MBA Tours are PR events disguised as a Q&A. On the contrary, the book is an unbiased analysis of each Top MBA program in the US supported by a large dataset and historical context on each industry. The guide builds a case for indstries that are likely to emerge as favourite for MBA graduates. Thorough and a valuable book." - Verified Purchase (15th June 2017)

"What I liked: The breadth of the information. Some of my favorite nonfiction books have taken the same approach as the ultimate guide have - cover background information in-depth. In the book, the author uses parallel threads to demonstrate the history of the state and the rise of industries. Will make you think how schools thrive based on the policy set by the state. California's obsession with Technology has revolutionized how we do Business and changed post-MBA trends. Many MBA applicants will be consulting or doing marketing for a Technology company. That is one key finding from the book. The latest development in AI, FinTech, and Automation is an additional context that I found valuable in the book.

Very informative. I would recommend that you read the book at least once in chronological order before using Table of Contents." - Verified Purchase (2nd July 2017)

Download How to Choose the Best MBA in US: The Ultimate Guide
(2018 Entering Class)

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