EA Exam 2022
Posted on
May 2022

EA Exam 2022 – Everything You Need To Know In 5 Minutes

Table of Contents

  • About the EA Exam
    • What is EA used for?
  • EA Structure, Sections, Timing, & Scoring
    • EA Scoring & Validity
    • What is a Good Score?
  • How, When, & Where can I take the EA? 
    • EA Exam Day FAQs
  • How Much Does The EA Exam Cost?
    • Rescheduling & Cancellation of your EA appointment
    • Additional Costs Worth Considering 
  • EA History & Background
    • EA Changes Over Years
    • Online EA Test in the face of COVID-19

About The EA Exam

The Executive Assessment (EA) is considered a trusted predictor of business school readiness for busy professionals wishing to earn an MBA or EMBA. The exam is crafted and administered by the General Management Admissions Council (GMAC) to measure a candidate’s higher order reasoning, critical thinking, analysis, and problem solving skills. You can also register for the EA through their official portal or browse through some EA prep sources here and find free EA prep questions here

The EA test is a multiple-choice, computer adaptive test (CAT) – this means that an algorithm selects each following question based on the test taker’s ability level and performance on previous questions. If you are new to this concept, the most important feature to understand is that, when you answer a question correctly, the following question will be even more challenging. Conversely, if you answer a question incorrectly, it will give you an easier one next.

What Is The EA Exam Used For?

The Executive Assessment is primarily used for admissions to nearly 100 institutions, universities, and MBA and EMBA programs worldwide which offer business and management disciplines. Keep in mind that many business schools screen applicants based on a range of criteria, but EA scores are among the most important screening metrics used. Others include undergraduate GPA, work and other relevant experience, application essays, recommendation letters, and personal interviews.

Strong EA results are necessary, but certainly not sufficient to gain admission to the best MBA/EMBA and business-oriented grad schools programs like Masters of Finance (MFin), Masters of Accounting (MAcct), Masters of Business Administration (MBA), Juris Doctor & Masters of Business Administration (JD-MBA) and PhDs in all these disciplines. Remember,  that while the EA is important, it’s certainly not a measure of who you are as a person and is one part of a many-faceted application. 

An investment of time and resources into the right EA preparation program or plan will result in a higher score on the test, which has a direct correlation with your admissions success and will have a positive impact on your business school experience and future professional career.

EA Structure, Sections, Timing, & Scoring

The EA test consists of three sections with categorized problems aiming to assess a different skill set. Each part differs in terms of score range and the number and types of problems:

1. Integrated Reasoning (IR) 12 questions | 30 minutes | scored from 0 to 20
There are four types of questions on the Integrated Reasoning section: 

      • Multi-source reasoning
      • Graphic interpretation 
      • Two-part analysis 
      • Table analysis

2. Quantitative 14 questions | 30 minutes | scored from 0 to 20
There are two types of problems on the Quantitative section: 

      • Data sufficiency   
      • Problem solving

3. Verbal 14 questions | 30 minutes | scored from 0 to 20
There are three types of questions on the Verbal section:

      • Reading comprehension
      • Critical reasoning 
      • Sentence correction

There are several other factors worth mentioning:

  • The Executive Assessment is meant for busy professionals. Many of whom have already been working professionally for around 7 years. 
  • The total score of the EA ranges from 100 to 200 
  • Despite the official scoring guides, the maximum you can score on EA is 174 and the minimum being 126.
  • The total time to take the EA test is 90 minutes.
  • As the total time of the EA is 90 minutes, test takers are not given any breaks. 
  • All three sections are weighted equally towards your overall score. 

EA Scoring & Validity

You’ll get your unofficial score when you complete your exam. You and your designated schools will receive your official EA score within 24 hours of the exam, and it will be valid for the following five years. In order to determine what score will be good for you, you should consider both the average (mean) EA score and the range of scores of applicants admitted to your desired university.

If you find yourself lost in the translation of the EA scores into percentiles, this article explains it in a meticulous way. 

What is a Good EA Score?

What is a good Executive Assessment score, and how can I get one? We are frequently asked this question, but the answer varies depending on who we speak with. Here at Apex, we want to help our clients obtain their goal EA scores because this is where they can truly compete for top programs and be eligible for MBA and EMBA scholarships. However a “good EA score” is determined by the applicant’s MBA program’s requirements; some programs demand a score above 150, while others require a score above 155. Selecting the programs you wish to attend and examining their MBA and EMBA class profile will supply you with this knowledge and equip you with a solid foundation from which to begin your EA preparation.

In case you are wondering what a 155 EA score can do for you, here is all you need to know!

How, When, & Where Can I Take The EA Exam?


We recommend registering two to three months before your desired exam date. The scheduling can be done online (applicant needs to open an account) or through a phone call (applicant needs to call the EA Customer Service in their region). For more information visit gmac.com/executive-assessment.   


You can take the EA at one of 600+ test centers worldwide or online in the comfort of your own home. You can search for a testing location near you here. The test is administered on a computer, via a platform used worldwide: Pearson VUE. The EA is available only at designated Pearson VUE test centers, thus assuring each candidate the exact same experience as all other test takers around the world.


You can take the EA test almost anytime you want, depending on the availability of dates into the test center(s) you have chosen. However, there are some requirements regarding re-taking the exam. You can retake the exam as soon as you’d like, however you may only take the exam up to two times. 

EA Exam Day FAQs

Here are the top 3 questions that clients ask us about exam day information:

1. What should I do if I fall sick on the exam day?

If you do not feel well come exam day you will have to make the decision as to whether or not you can take the test and perform at your best. Most people will not be able to do this, so it will be best to cancel. If you do so on the day of the exam, you will incur a loss of your full $350 exam fee. If you cancel the exam up to 24 hours in advance you will receive only a $250 refund. However, rescheduling the exam between 24-48 hours will only incur a fee of $75 while rescheduling the appointment more than 48 hours out does not incur a fee. 

2. What can I bring with me to the test center?

You are allowed in the test center with the following:

    • EA approved identification
    • Appointment confirmation letter or email you received from Pearson VUE
    • Prescription eyeglasses
    • Light sweater or light non-outerwear jacket
    • Comfort items only if they were pre-approved as an accommodation received in advance

Any additional personal belongings that you bring with you such as your cell phone, bag, snacks, and earphones will need to be stored in one of the provided lockers. Any cell phone use throughout the test time is prohibited.
The test center will provide you with everything that you need in order to take the test including scratch paper and a pencil.

3. What can I expect at the test center?

A usual test center is typically quite small. Once you arrive you will have to provide the administrator with the relevant documents and while these are being processed you will be asked to wait in the waiting area. In this area, you can still access all your personal belongings up until you are called into the testing room.

Once in the room, you will be allocated an individual exam station where you will find a computer.

Here is the full list of the EA Exam Day FAQs

4. How Much Does The EA Test Cost?

The cost to sit the EA exam is $350. This includes sending your results to up to five schools of your choice. There are no fees for sending your scores to any additional school. 

Rescheduling & Cancellation of your EA appointment
Regular Rescheduling fees:

  • No Fee if requested more than 48 hours prior to appointment
  • $75 if requested 24 to 48 hours prior to appointment (Temporarily waived)
  • $10 to reschedule the assessment by phone 
  • Regular Cancellation fees:
  • $100 to cancel up to 24 hours before the appointment
  • $10 to cancel the assessment by phone. 

Additional Costs Worth Considering
Apart from the test fee, there are other costs that you may want to consider. GMAC advises people preparing for the exam to utilize the EA Official Guide (as do we) alongside other learning aids as additional materials. Please note that the Official Guide is a great resource for problems, but the explanations leave something to be desired, so using only the Official Guide is not recommended.

A large percentage of test takers who wish to score in the 90th percentile or higher (157+) on the EA invest in private EA preparation as a personalized means to achieving long-term career success. Our firm, Apex , specializes in offering private, customized EA preparation and admissions consulting. We focus on individual learning and a holistic coaching environment where we tackle not only the fundamentals but the underlying structure and complexity of the EA.

We do this not just to get you a good score, but to prepare you for your MBA/EMBA program and career beyond by focusing on universal critical thinking skills, cognitive heuristics, emotional and behavioral aspects of learning and high stakes performance, and other learning techniques that can be applied widely over the course of a lifetime. We take pride in exactly this personalized approach as a means for every candidate to utilize their strengths better, focus on their weaknesses, and overcome test anxiety through an exclusively designed EA curriculum.

A lot of people try to save money on the EA preparation process. When you consider that a top EMBA can lead to millions of dollars of extra earnings over the course of a lifetime, it makes sense to invest in EA preparation. Learn more about this subject with our instructors Mike and Jaymes, here: Why is Test Prep so Expensive?

EA History & Background

In March of 2016, the Executive Assessment made its debut in the standardized test world. It was a novel test designed for working professionals who wished to undertake an EMBA. The creators of the EA, the GMAC, wished to create an exam which tested the real-world skills working professionals have gained throughout their careers. 

As the EA is a newish test on the testing market, it is only accepted at a handful of schools. This list, however, is constantly expanding. Because of this, be sure to double check the official EA site to keep up-to-date on which schools accept the EA. 

Online EA Test

The Executive Assessment is available online. However, it is encouraged by the GMAC that those who feel safe to do so, take the EA at a test center.
In terms of content, the EA online has the same structure and content as the test taken at a test center.
Registering for the EA online is the same process as registering to take the exam in person. Just be sure to select the ‘online’ (at home) option when selecting your test location. 
Interested test takers are able to take the EA at any home location so long as they have the necessary technology to do so. However, test takers in Mainland China, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and South Sudan are not able to take the EA online.


That’s it! Thanks for sticking with us to the end of this EA test crash course! If you are looking for a more comprehensive version diving deeper into what the EA has in store for you, feel free to check out our website for more information


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GMAT Most Asked Questions
Posted on
May 2022

GMAT Most Asked Questions 2022

If you’re thinking about taking the GMAT or have already registered for a testing date, you undoubtedly have a ton of questions swirling around in your mind. In this blog post, we’ll answer some of the GMAT FAQs in 2022.

1. What does GMAT stand for?

The GMAT stands for General Management Admission Test. The GMAT is a standardized test that measures your analytical, writing, quantitative, and verbal skills. The GMAT is used by business schools to help decide which applicants to admit into their programs.

2. Who conducts the GMAT exam?

The administrator of the GMAT is the General Management Admission Council (GMAC).

3. Why is the GMAT exam required for MBA?

The exam is considered to be a predictor of academic success for MBA programs and business careers. The GMAT tests reasoning and problem-solving skills, and critical thinking. It is also a measure of verbal, mathematical, and analytical writing skills.

4. When can I register for the GMAT 2022?

You can register for the GMAT between 6 months to 24 hours before the exam. However, we recommend you register 3 months in advance. 

5. How do I register for the GMAT 2022?

To register online you will need to:

    • Create an account on the mba.com website.
    • Verify your email.
    • Book a date.
    • Pay the application fee of $250.

You can also register through fax, phone, or mailThe registration process can take 15 to 30 minutes. 

6. How much does the GMAT cost?

The GMAT costs $250, approximately 230 euros and 190 pounds. The price may differ by country.

7. Where to take the GMAT?

You can find the nearest testing center on the mba.com website or take the exam online. 

8. Can the GMAT exam be taken online?

Yes, the GMAT exam can be taken online. The GMAC has decided to make the online GMAT a permanent option, after it was introduced at the beginning of the pandemic, along with in-person exams. 

9. When is the GMAT exam held in 2022?

GMAT is available almost all year round. Testing dates are available 6 months in advance. You can book an available slot in the nearest testing center, appointments are usually available 6 days a week in most countries. If you are taking the GMAT online, you can take the exam 7 days a week.

We recommend registering 3 months in advance or no more than 3 weeks ahead.

10. How to reschedule my GMAT exam?

You can reschedule your GMAT online or by phone up to 24 hours prior to the exam. Note that if you cancel by phone, you will be charged an additional fee of $10. A rescheduling fee applies if you decide to reschedule your exam:

    • 14 days to 24 hours prior to the exam: $150
    • 15 to 60 days prior to the exam: $100
    • 60 days prior to the exam: $50

11. How often can I take the GMAT?

You can take the GMAT 5 times in a 12-months period. However, you can’t take it more than once in a 16-day period. However, we recommend not to retake the exam in less than 3 months. It’s unlikely that your score would improve drastically in a short period of time.

12. Are GMAT and GRE similar?

The main difference between GMAT and GRE is that the GMAT is designed specifically for business schools, while the GRE is accepted by a series of master’s programs. The GRE keeps your options open in case you haven’t made up your mind about your master’s degree. However, keep in mind that not all business schools accept GRE. Also, make sure you contact your admissions office and check which exam they prefer.

13. How long should I study for the GMAT?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. The GMAT journey is unique to everyone, and you’re the only one to know what’s right for you. However, on average candidates spend 3-6 months preparing for the GMAT. We recommend a 3-month GMAT study plan, which can be shrunk or stretched according to your schedule.

14. Can GMAT be cracked without a private tutor?

When you start preparing for the GMAT, you need to establish some goals and a study plan. Achieving the score you’re aiming for is not an easy mission. The GMAT prep requires perfect preparation and continuous motivation and dedication. If you find yourself falling behind and you aren’t anywhere near where you planned to be, you might consider hiring a GMAT tutor. Having someone by your side step-by-step can make the prep journey easier on academic and social aspects.

Before hiring a GMAT tutor do your research to find the best tutor for you. At Apex we offer personalized tutoring according to each candidate’s needs. We provide a free complimentary consultation call for your questions about GMAT private tutoring.

15. Can I use a calculator on the GMAT?

You are not allowed to bring in your own calculator. However, you will be provided with a calculator only during the Integrated Reasoning section. During the Quantitative section, you won’t be able to use a calculator, but you will be given a note board and markers to do calculations.

16. Can I skip questions on the GMAT exam?

No, you need to provide an answer before moving to the next questions. The GMAT is a computer-adaptive test (CAT) which means that the questions’ difficulty adapts to your skill level. As you progress, the difficulty of the next question is based on your performance on the previous one. Therefore, you can’t skip a question.

17. Are GMAT questions repeated?

Yes, and no. GMAT questions don’t repeat but the concepts and the patterns do. Often elements of some questions will be reused to formulate a new one, but not the same question.

18. How does the GMAT scoring work?

The way GMAT scoring works can be complicated since it’s a CAT. The GMAT is scored on a scale from 200 to 800, with 800 being a perfect score. Each section of the GMAT is scored individually.

The overall 800-score is done by a confidential algorithm by the GMAC.

19. Are the GMAT results instant?

Right after the exam, you will have an unofficial report with the scores of your Quant, Verbal and Integrated Reasoning section. You have up to two minutes to accept or cancel them. If you don’t make a decision your score will be automatically canceled.

In case you accept the results, you and the schools you have chosen to send the reports to will receive an official report up to 20 days after the exam. The official report will also include the Analytical Assessment score and your GMAT percentile ranking. 

In case you cancel your results, they won’t show up on your score report.

20. What GMAT score do I need?

There is no “passing” score on the GMAT. To know what score you’re aiming for, you need to check the class profile and the admission requirements of the programs you’re looking at. Your score goal may differ depending on your school(s) needs.  

21. Can I cancel my GMAT score?

You can cancel your GMAT score immediately after the exam at no cost. The score can be canceled up to 72 hours after the exam for a fee. If you cancel your score, it will not be shown on your score reports. If you cancel your score and want to reinstate it, you can do so online or by phone for a fee of $50. An additional $10 fee applies if you cancel by phone.

22. For how many years is the GMAT valid?

Your GMAT score is valid for 5 years after you take the exam.

23. Can the GMAT be waived?

Few schools in the US have policies for waving the GMAT, those are usually significant professional work experience, degrees, or high achievements. The applications are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Other schools accept the GRE instead of the GMAT.


If you have questions that we haven’t answered, book a 30-minute complimentary consultation call with one of our top GMAT instructors or check our article on GMAT Test Days FAQs.


Contributor: Cynthia Addoumieh

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EA Integrated Reasoning Section - All You Need To Know
Posted on
Apr 2022

EA Integrated Reasoning Section – All You Need To Know

The Executive Assessment exam is considered to be a relatively short exam for admission to an EMBA program, but it manages to cover a wide range of topics. That being said, knowing the structure of the exam, as well as what to expect on the test day is a huge part of your EA prep.

The Integrated Reasoning is one of the three sections on the EA exam and it is scored from 0 to 18. It requires a complex preparation that will help you develop verbal and quantitative skills, the ability to read charts and graphs, and actually get insights from those charts. In this article, we are going to share with you everything you need to know about the EA Integrated Reasoning section – from what this section consists of to some important aspects of the preparation that you need to consider.

1. What is the Structure of the EA Integrated Reasoning Section?

The EA Integrated Reasoning section is divided into 4 categories – Graphics Interpretation, Table Analysis, Two-Part Analysis, and Multi-Source Reasoning. Each of the categories contains 12 questions. A test-taker has 30 minutes to answer the 12 questions or about 2.5 minutes per question. The 12 questions are divided into two modules of 6 questions each. Depending on the test-taker’s performance in the first module of questions, the difficulty of the questions in the second module varies. The more complex questions you answer in the first module, the more complex you will get in the second module, and eventually, you can get a higher score.

2. What is the Scoring on the EA Integrated Reasoning Section?

All three sections on the EA exam are scored in the same way. The official score on each section is ranged between 0 and 20. The score from each section has the same weight in the EA total score and the final grade.

3. What are the different types of questions? 

There are the four types of Integrated Reasoning questions included in the EA exam:

  • Two-part Analysis

The questions in this category ask you to select two answers from a set of choices presented in a table. The two answers have to be related to each other somehow, so you need to look for some analogy or connection between them. The questions will be quantitative or verbal, a.k.a. based on a mathematical problem or a scenario. Although the questions in this part may seem relatively easy to test-takers, they can be tricky. Sometimes, in these types of problems, you may have very little information to find the relationship between the two answers.  In such cases, you will need to select the only options available that fit that relationship, which may be rather challenging.


Consider the sets S, T and U, where

S = {35, 14, 64, 23, 49, 67}
T = {x, 35, 14, 64, 23, 49, 67} and
U = {y, 35, 14, 64, 23, 49, 67}

The mean of T is 5 less than the mean of S. The median of U is 9 less than the median of S.

Select the value of x and the value of y consistent with the statements given. Make two selections, one in each column.Two-Part Analysis


  • Graphics Interpretation

The questions in this category ask you to work with some information presented in a graph, chart, or some other form of data-visualization (i.e. bar-graph, stacked-bar graph, x-y scatter plot, etc.). You have to analyze the information and select the right answers based on it. The question addresses math concepts such as statistics, correlation, ratios, etc. In this part, it is important to learn how these concepts look graphically and get used to reading the graphs or charts.


Graphic Interpretation

Refer to the pictograph of a survey of attendees at the annual meeting of an international hotels group. Each symbol represents 13 companies in a sample of 390. Use the drop-down menus to complete each statement according to the information presented in the diagram. If one company is selected at random from the 390 surveyed, the chance that the company will be located in only one nation or headquartered outside of Europe or both is _____

A: 1 out of 6
B: 1 out of 3
C: 2 out of 3
D: 5 out of 6

If one company is selected at random from the 390 surveyed, the chance that the company will be both located in a single country and headquartered outside of Europe is _____

A: 1 out of 6
B: 1 out of 3
C: 2 out of 3
D: 5 out of 6


  • Table Analysis

The questions in this category present data in the form of a table and require you to answer Yes/No or True/False questions about the data in the table. You can sort the columns of the table in different ways to make their reading and understanding easier. That is why being able to sort functions effectively could be an essential skill you need to answer the Table Analysis questions. The first step to the solution of each problem is exactly to decide which “sort” function you are going to use. In terms of the topics, one can expect them to be somehow similar to those covered in the Graphics Interpretation category.


For each of the following statements, select Yes if the statement is true based solely on the information in the table; otherwise select No.

Table Analysis Part 1

The table shows circulation data, by non-fiction classification, for books in a certain library system in November 2003. Percentages are given to the nearest 0.1 percent.

Table Analysis Part 2


  • Multi-Source Reasoning

The questions in this category present some information in the form of multiple texts as each text will be based on a single subject. You need to answer questions that are based on that specific text. You have to work with multiple texts which will include some sort of data. Being able to understand this data will be very helpful to you because you can go ahead and use the insights from that data to answer the questions. As you might have guessed, this category requires you to mix quantitative, verbal, and data-interpretation skills. You have to try to look beyond the most obvious tab and seek information that could be hidden somewhere in the paragraph.


Definition of musician: Any person who uses a device created to produce sound through blowing air, vibrating a string, striking a surface, or electronic means, or uses parts of their own body, with the intent of creating sound for the purpose of entertainment, communication, self-improvement, education, or production of an emotional response. This definition of musician fails to capture the standard concept of a musician in that it allows for the inclusion of some things that are not ordinarily thought of as musicians, for example, people who _____,

A: play many instruments
B: perform their music as a paid profession
C: turn on a stereo for their own enjoyment
D: write music for the purpose of others performing it
E: work as piano movers
F: teach the history of music

and excludes some things that are ordinarily thought of as musicians, for example, people who _____.

A: play many instruments
B: perform their music as a paid profession
C: turn on a stereo for their own enjoyment
D: write music for the purpose of others performing it
E: work as piano movers
F: teach the history of music


Understanding the structure, scoring, and different types of questions of the EA Integrated Reasoning section will help you to prepare better for the section as you will know what to expect and work on. It is important to develop a strategy on how to tackle the complex and multi-layered problems included in this section. You need to work on your ability to read and analyze graphs and charts, find and evaluate relationships in data, synthesize information from various texts, etc. We know that this may be a challenging task! At Apex we are more than happy to support you on your EA journey and assist you in every step of the process. You can sign-up for a 30-minute complimentary consultation call with one of our instructors who can help you ace any section on your EA exam!


Contributor: Diana Materova

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EA Exam Day FAQs
Posted on
Apr 2022

EA Exam Day FAQs – Answered!

Here are some of the most frequently asked EA exam day questions we get from our clients. Our EA FAQs are here to help you prepare for your EA exam day. 

1. When should I arrive at the test center on the test day? 

Short answer: about 30 minutes prior to the exam. This gives you plenty of time to get lost (however we recommend practice getting to the exam center before test day). Please note that if you’re 15 minutes late from the start of the exam, the administrators might not let you in. Be on time!

2. What documents should I bring to the test center?

You should bring your original valid ID which contains your name, your date of birth, a recent photograph, and your signature (a passport, a national ID card, Military ID card, Registration card, or a driving license). You will not be allowed to take the EA if you don’t present that document. Note that these documents are subject to change depending on the country in which you reside. You can take a look here to get more info on country-specific requirements. 

3. What am I allowed to bring into the exam room?

You are not allowed to bring personal items such as phones, tablets, smartwatches, etc. A locker will be provided to you where you can store your belongings. The same rules apply during the online EA, the belongings should not be in your reach, or else your exam will be canceled.  

4. Am I allowed to bring a calculator to the EA?

Yes and No. A calculator is allowed during the Integrated Reasoning Section, but you cannot use it during the Quantitative section.

5. Is there a dress code that I should follow for the EA?

There is no official dress code on the EA test day. However, we recommend wearing comfortable clothes and bringing an extra layer in case the test room is cold.

6. What do I do if my computer stops working while taking the EA?

If you are taking the EA on-ground, don’t try to fix the problem by yourself. The best thing to do in this case is to raise your hand and ask the proctor for help

In case you are sitting for the exam online, inform the proctor about the problem and they will attempt to help you. If the issue can’t be solved, your exam will end. You will be able to register for the exam again at no additional cost. 

7. What is the best way to handle disruptions while taking the EA?

Any disruptive situations during on-ground or online EA exams will be examined on a case-to-case basis. After the decision is made, you might be allowed to resit for the exam at another time without additional charge.

However, be ready for minor disruptions during the exam, such as coughing, fidgeting noises, sneezing, etc. To make sure these noises don’t distract you during the exam, we recommend you spend time doing practice exams in an uncontrolled environment, such as a coffee shop. Studying or practicing in public can help you get used to disruptions that you might face during the exam.

8. Will I be given something to write on during the EA exam?

You will be provided with pens and scratch paper by the test administrators once you are seated. If you are taking the online EA there is an on-screen scratchpad and recently introduced a pre-approved scratch paper option.

9. Do we get breaks during the EA exam?

The EA does NOT have any breaks. In case of an emergency, you can raise your hand and the administrator will help you. Note that the timer does not stop during your emergency. 

10. How many times can I take the EA exam?

You can take the EA exam up to 2 times.

11. How do I send my EA scores to the schools I am applying to?

If you need to send your EA score to a school, you can do so by requesting a score report through the online application system. You will need to provide the name and contact information of the school you are sending your scores to, and the chosen schools will have access to your results. 

In case you want to send the scores to additional programs, you can do so through your account online without any additional cost. 

Final Thoughts

This brief EA FAQ sheet should have answered some of your more pressing questions. Do you still have questions about the EA? We offer extensive EA prep to help with all levels of test-takers. Have a complimentary consultation call with one of our top instructors. You can check out more on our website.


Contributor: Sarin Sulahian & Cynthia Addoumieh

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Radius as Hypotenuse
Posted on
Apr 2022

Radius As Hypotenuse – Problems & Solutions

Welcome back to our fourth article on GMAT circles. Last time we considered inscribed angles and learned that where there is a 90-degree inscribed angle, there is a hypotenuse that is also a diameter of the circle. This time we will explore a class of problems where the radius, rather than the diameter, pulls double duty as a hypotenuse. Let’s dive right in with the following official problem.

1. Radius as Hypotenuse  – GMAT Official Problem

Semicircular archway over a flat street problemThe figure above represents a semicircular archway over a flat street. The semicircle has a center at O and a radius of 6 feet. What is the height h, in feet, of the archway 2 feet from its center?

A. √2
B. 2
C. 3
D. 4√2
E. 6

Problem SolutionThis problem is a straightforward application of the Pythagorean theorem. Since we are told that the radius of the semicircle is 6 feet, we can draw a 6-foot radius from center O to the point where height h meets the semicircle. Voila – a right triangle.

h = √(62 – 22)
h = √(36 – 4)
h = √32

This is where you should stop and mark answer choice D since we are taking the square root of a number that is not a perfect square. When we simplify this radical, something will get left inside. Therefore answers B, C, and E are out (Answer A is out because √2 =/= √32), and the correct choice is D.

2. Radius as Hypotenuse Problem 1 

Let’s try something a little different:

In the xy-plane, point (r,s) lies on a circle with center at the origin. What is the value of + s²?

1. The circle has radius 2.
2. The point (2,-2) lies on the circle.

A. Statement (1) ALONE is sufficient but statement (2) ALONE is not sufficient.
B. Statement (2) ALONE is sufficient but statement (1) ALONE is not sufficient.
C. BOTH statements TOGETHER are sufficient, but NEITHER statement ALONE is sufficient.
D. EACH statement ALONE is sufficient.
E. Statements (1) and (2) TOGETHER are not sufficient. 

This is the first problem we’ve seen where a circle is placed on the xy-plane. In such problems, it is usually helpful to remember the basic circle principle that every point on the circle (meaning on its edge or perimeter) is equidistant from its center.


If you’re unfamiliar with these problems, statement 1 may trip you up. Is the radius of the circle sufficient to determine + ? Yes, it is. If you are concerned about the unknown positivity/negativity of the coordinates r and s, recall that the square of any number (except 0) is positive. This means that for any positive/negative combination of r and s, the sum + will have the same value. 

But what you really need here is to see that the expression + matches the famous + from the Pythagorean theorem, and in fact, it functions the exact same way.

Radius as Hypotenuse ProblemIn this setup, the radius is the hypotenuse of the right triangle with legs r and s. Therefore, applying the Pythagorean theorem, the value + represents the square of the radius. So if we know the value of the radius (2), we know the value r² + s², and statement 1 is sufficient.

Statement 2 offers that the point (√2, -√2) lies on the circle. This statement should be “easier” to evaluate than statement 1. Seeing the radicals in the coordinates ought to help you make the connection to the Pythagorean theorem if you didn’t already while evaluating statement 1. But using the principle that every point on a circle is equidistant from its center, we know that this given point (√2, -√2) is the same distance from the center as the point (r, s) in the question. Therefore if we sum the squares of √2 and -√2, the result (4) will also represent the value r² + s² we were asked about.

3. Problem 2

Let’s try one more:

In cross section, a tunnel that carries one lane of one-way traffic is a semicircle with radius 4.2 m. Is the tunnel large enough to accommodate the truck that is approaching the entrance to the tunnel?

1. The maximum width of the truck is 2.4 m.
2. The maximum height of the truck is 4 m.

A. Statement (1) ALONE is sufficient but statement (2) ALONE is not sufficient.
B. Statement (2) ALONE is sufficient but statement (1) ALONE is not sufficient.
C. BOTH statements TOGETHER are sufficient, but NEITHER statement ALONE is sufficient.
D. EACH statement ALONE is sufficient.
E. Statements (1) and (2) TOGETHER are not sufficient. 

This one is a little more complex. Sometimes on GMAT quant problems, it is helpful to ask why certain details were specified. In this case, we are told that the tunnel “carries one lane of one-way traffic.” This is important because if it were not the case, the truck would have to drive on one side or the other, and there’s no way it would be able to get through the tunnel. Since there is only one lane going through the tunnel, the truck can “center up” to give itself the best chance of fitting through.


This is one of those less-common DS problems where each statement on its own is clearly insufficient. If all we know is that the truck is 2.4m wide at its widest point (statement 1), it may still be too tall to fit through the tunnel. If all we know is that the truck is 4m tall at its tallest point, we don’t know whether the truck is narrow enough to make it through the tunnel while being this tall.

Problem 2 - Solution But if we combine statements 1 and 2, we can use the Pythagorean theorem to calculate the max distance of a point on the “centered up” truck from the point at the “center” of the semicircle.

Now here’s the key step: don’t calculate! Running the Pythagorean theorem with our values here would be a waste of time. As long as the value p [from the graphic] is less than 4.2 (the radius of the tunnel), the truck will fit. But for DS, we don’t have to know whether the truck will fit. All we have to know is whether the value p can be calculated, and in this case, it can be. Statements 1 and 2 together are sufficient, and the correct answer choice is C.


This concludes our fourth article on the GMAT’s treatment of circles. Next time we will look at circles in two different 3-dimensional shapes: cylinders and spheres.


Contributor: Elijah Mize (Apex GMAT Instructor)

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EMBA Programs - Everything You Need To Know
Posted on
Mar 2022

EMBA Programs – Everything You Need To Know

The Executive Masters of Business Administration (EMBA) is a version of the MBA that is designed specifically for executives, managers, and high-ranking, highly-experienced business professionals. It is a short experience, usually done part-time, and is specifically designed for those who are working and do not have time to dedicate solely to studying. It is a highly desirable program usually used to help advance an executive’s career, help them as leaders, or even help them transition into other fields.

1. What is the EMBA?

EMBA was first introduced in 1943 at the University of Chicago, 35 years after the first MBA programs. In the midst of World War II, this was a step that helped bolster and further American business. Designed for educating managers with significant work experience, the earliest students were usually in their 40s or 50s with many years of business experience but very little formal business education. Today there are over 300 EMBA programs all across the globe. 

2. Differences From the MBA

The purpose of the EMBA was to further education to those who were either leaders in their companies or those who wanted to climb up the ladder. The average EMBA candidate has about 10 to 15 years of experience, while an MBA candidate has 3 to 5 years. EMBA programs are generally pursued part-time, while an MBA is more often a full-time undertaking. MBAs offer more traditional and immersive student experiences, while EMBAs consist of intensive short-term classes that business professionals who have little to no time can fit into their schedules. Some EMBA programs accept GMAT scores for admission, but for the most part, the GMAT is used for MBA programs. The EA (Executive Assessment) is a specialized version of the GMAT designed specifically for EMBA programs. 

The EA is a short version of the GMAT designed to be a quicker much shorter version of the exam. It is designed for the busy executives who go into EMBA programs and are short of time. Its sections are shorter both in the number of questions and in the time limits. It also lacks an analytical writing assessment (AWA) section.

3. EMBA Courses 

An EMBA course load is broken up into core classes and electives. Core classes usually focus on developing leadership, management, and business skills. They can cover fields like accounting, economics, and business ethics. In comparison, elective courses are in line with one’s own interests. Topics like entrepreneurship and asset management can be covered in these elective courses. The EMBA courses are a fantastic way to gain more in-depth knowledge or remind yourself of your fields of interest. 

4. Different Types of EMBA Programs

There are three types of EMBA programs – a traditional EMBA, an Online EMBA, and a Specialist EMBA. 

  • Traditional EMBA: This is a part-time program in which courses are offered in the evenings or on the weekend, or will have very intensive short-term course periods (about two weeks). Class sizes are usually small and can have a hybrid online and in-person approach. These classes focus on building communication and management skills. 

Top 5 Traditional EMBA Programs

1. HEC Paris
2. University of Chicago Booth School of Business
3. The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania
4. IESE Business School
5. MIT Sloan School of Business

  • Online EMBA: Online EMBAs are hyper-flexible and can be taken by students all over the world – some of them offer hybrid class options. Online EMBAs are a great choice for someone who may not have access to quality in-person classes or does not have enough time to commute.

Top 5 Online EMBA Programs 

1. Duke University Fuqua School of Business
2. University of Virginia Darden School of Business
3. Swiss School of Business and Management Geneva
4. IE Business School
5. UCLA Anderson School of Business 

  • Specialist EMBA: These are EMBA programs that may have a specific concentration on one area. Sustainability, international business, or even STEM concentrated programs are available. 

5. Personal Attention and Global Emphasis 

Something that differs between a normal MBA and an EMBA is that the latter is more personal. There are only so many executives in the world, and with programs being so expensive these programs are small and so each person gets a much higher degree of individual attention. EMBA programs commonly have one-to-one sessions. They also offer catering, travel and lodging packages. 

Some EMBA programs even have global options, in which students can spend time abroad during the program. Or these EMBA programs will bring in professionals from around the world and can provide programs in which EMBA students interact with other EMBA students transnationally. These interactions can serve as networking opportunities.

6. EMBA Return on Investment  

You may be wondering how valuable the EMBA is. Can it really change your career and job outcomes? Yes, it can. The EMBA on average costs about $80,000 dollars a year, with some of the most prestigious EMBA programs costing upwards of $120,000 dollars. Obviously, these programs are extremely expensive, but many companies will sponsor employees to earn an EMBA and, if they don’t, scholarship opportunities for EMBA programs are plentiful. 

The cost may even be worth it as on average EMBA graduates from the top 100 schools saw their salary increase by 57% three years after graduating, with an average 14% increase in salary immediately after graduating. And according to EMBAC (Executive MBA Council) after graduating 39% of EMBA students receive a promotion.

In Review 

The EMBA is a great way to help push your career further. With a variety of courses catering to the interests of business professionals, it can help further one’s own knowledge in a field they may not be familiar with. Though for many EMBA programs either an EA or GMAT score is needed for admission. Here at Apex, we have world-class tutors that can help you get into your desired EMBA program. Learn more now by scheduling a complimentary call with our tutors.


Contributor: Lukas Duncan

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Inscribed Angles & Inscribed Polygons In The GMAT
Posted on
Mar 2022

Inscribed Angles & Inscribed Polygons In The GMAT

Welcome back to our third article on GMAT circles. In the second article, we explored central angles, sectors, and arcs. This time we will introduce another kind of angle: the inscribed angle.

An inscribed angle is an angle drawn by using line segments to connect one point on a circle to two other points on the same circle, as in the graphic below:

Inscribed AngleLike a central angle, an inscribed angle creates a “wedge” shape, like a triangle where one side is rounded. The rounded side is an arc of the circle. For a central angle, the measure of the angle corresponds to the measure of the associated arc in a 1:1 relationship. For an inscribed angle, the measure of the angle corresponds to the measure of the associated arc in a 1:2 relationship. A 30 degree inscribed angle creates a 60-degree arc on the other side of the circle. A 60-degree inscribed angle creates a 12- degree arc on the other side of the circle. And, importantly, a 90-degree inscribed angle creates a 180-degree arc (half a circle or a semicircle) on the other side of the circle.

1. Inscribed Angle – GMAT Official Guide Problem

GMAT problems rarely use the term “inscribed angle” or feature an inscribed angle in isolation. Usually, the inscribed angle is part of an inscribed polygon, a polygon drawn inside a circle so that its vertices are points on the circle. Take a look at this official GMAT problem:

Inscribed Angle Official GMAT ProblemIn the figure shown, the triangle is inscribed in the semicircle. If the length of line segment AB is 8 and the length of line segment BC is 6, what is the length of arc ABC?



A. 15π
B. 12π
C. 10π
D. 7π
E. 5π

The problem refers not to an angle inscribed in a circle but to a triangle inscribed in a semicircle. Still, knowing the “1:2” factor of relationship between an inscribed angle and its associated arc is the key to solving this problem. Your logic might go something like this:

  1. This is a semicircle or a 180-degree arc.
  2. The angle at point B “opens up” to the straight edge of the semicircle, which is like the diameter of a circle. Another semicircle or 180-degree arc could be drawn across from this angle so that it makes a whole circle with the existing piece.
  3. Since the measure of an inscribed angle is 1/2 the measure of the arc it “creates” on the other side of the circle, the angle at point B is a 90-degree angle, and the triangle is a right triangle. 

At this point, your attention should return to the given information about the lengths of line segments AB and BC, which we now know to be the legs of a right triangle. These legs have lengths 6 and 8, which have a 3:4 relationship. Therefore we are looking at a 3-4-5 triangle, and the length of the hypotenuse is 10.

Finally, you must recall that this hypotenuse is the diameter of the circle. Therefore the diameter of the whole circle is 10. However, marking answer choice C would be a mistake, since we were asked for the length of arc ABC, where arc ABC is a semicircle (half a circle). So your final step is to divide your diameter of 10π by 2, leading you to the correct answer choice: E.

2. Inscribed Square – GMAT Official Guide Problem

Let’s try another problem, this time with an inscribed square:

Inscribed Square GMAT Official Guide ProblemThe figure shows a drop-leaf. With all four leaves down the tabletop is a square, and with all four leaves up the tabletop is a circle. What is the radius, in meters, of the tabletop when all four leaves are up?
A. 1/2
C. 1
D. √2
E. 2

Notice that the problem doesn’t mention “a square inscribed in a circle,” but that is nonetheless what we have here. Many GMAT quant problems create scenarios that correspond to some mathematical phenomenon without using the math language. In this case, the fact that we are dealing with a square inscribed in a circle is relatively easy to see.

As in the previous problem, we are asked for a value of the circle (this time it is the radius instead of an arc length) but given only information about the inscribed shape: a square. As in the previous problem, the key is realizing that with any 90-degree inscribed angle, the line segments forming the angle are legs of a right triangle whose hypotenuse is also a diameter of the circle.

Using the Pythagorean theorem, the hypotenuse of this triangle (or the diagonal of the inscribed square) is √2. As before, forgetting to divide this value by 2 (since we were asked for the radius, not the diameter) will lead you to an incorrect answer choice. Don’t trip at the finish line. The value you need is √2 /2, answer choice B.

Here is a related problem:

Square inscribed in a circle problemIf rectangle ABCD is inscribed in the circle above, what is the area of the circular region?

A. 36.00
B. 42.25
C. 64.00
D. 84.50
E. 169.00

Again, we are asked for a value of the circle (its total area) but given only information about the inscribed rectangle. For our purposes, this rectangle is just as good as the square in the previous problem. With the square, we only needed the length of one side, because we know that all four sides are the same length. With a rectangle, we need both the length and the width in order to calculate the diagonal – the diameter of the circle – via the Pythagorean theorem. If you know your Pythagorean triples (like 3-4-5), you may realize immediately that the diagonal of this rectangle is 13.

D = √(5² + 12²)
D = √(25 + 144)
D = √169
D = 13

Now that we have the circle’s diameter, we can solve for its area. The radius of the circle is 13/2 or 6.5, and since Area = r², the square of 13/2 or 6.5 will be the coefficient of in the correct answer choice. It would be a waste of time to fully multiply out 6.5 * 6.5. We know that it will be of form __.25, and the only answer choice that matches this is B.

3. Data Sufficiency – GMAT Official Guide Problem

Let’s transition to data sufficiency for one final problem. Using the diagonal/diameter relationship in the previous problems, it would be possible to construct a variety of DS problems. But some DS inscription problems rely on another property of inscribed polygons.

Square ABCD is inscribed in circle O. What is the area of square region ABCD?

  1. The area of circular region O is 64π.
  2. The circumference of circle O  is 16π.


To answer this problem, all you need to know is that there is only one way to inscribe a square in a circle. The vertices of the square must lie on the circle. The perimeters and areas of the square and the circle will scale together. This means that if we know any value for either shape, we can calculate every value for both of them. Therefore each statement on its own is sufficient, and the answer to this problem is D.

As long as any polygon can be established as regular (having sides of equal length and angles of equal measure), there is only one way to inscribe it in a circle. A square is a regular quadrilateral, so this works for squares every time. But this same problem could have used a regular pentagon, a regular hexagon, or any regular polygon you like, and the correct answer would still be D. The regularity of the polygon is sufficient – and necessary – for this to work. If the regularity of the polygon cannot be established, then there are an infinite number of ways to inscribe it in a circle, each with its own unique area and perimeter.

It is also possible to flip the relationship and inscribe a circle inside a polygon. A related term is circumscription. The shape on the inside is inscribed in the shape on the outside. The shape on the outside is circumscribed around the shape on the inside. GMAT problems where the circle is on the inside usually use a square, so that the diameter of the circle is equal to the length of each side of the square. Such problems tend to be of lower difficulty level.


This concludes our third article on the GMAT’s treatment of circles. Next time we will look at what happens when the radius – rather than the diameter – pulls double duty as the hypotenuse of a right triangle.


Contributor: Elijah Mize (Apex GMAT Instructor)

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How The EA Can Lead To A Fulfilling Career
Posted on
Mar 2022

How The EA Can Lead To A Fulfilling Career

The EA (Executive Assessment) is a relatively new exam, meant to specifically test skills related to business leadership and management. Essentially, if we have to sum it up in just a few words, it is a more focused version of the GMAT. The EA and the GMAT are designed by the same company – the GMAC. The EA is designed mainly for EMBA (Executive MBA) applicants and is a shorter, “softer” version of the GMAT. Despite this, taking the EA is a necessary step that can help you take your career to the next level, as getting an EMBA can be a huge boost in your future. 

The EA is a Stepping Stone to the EMBA 

The EMBA is an opportunity for anybody to advance their career opportunities and is designed specifically for those who are trying to move up the ladder. The EA is a short 90-minute test that can be completed during a busy professional’s schedule. The EA is designed for those that don’t have the time to study for hours and hours every day. EMBA students are usually older with more experience and most of them are often around 15 years out of undergraduate school. This means that many candidates are far along in their career path and choose to get an EMBA to help them achieve their career dreams. Thus, taking the EA and subsequently earning an EMBA has the potential to improve your professional and personal life results. 

What Does an EMBA Give You?

The EMBA provides a course curriculum that involves accounting, finance, marketing, and operations, but also focuses on soft skills such as leadership. The EMBA also helps many to see their job from an outside perspective, allowing them to make more calculated and well-reasoned decisions. Another thing the EMBA does is give many an edge in today’s increasingly competitive job market that attracts applicants from across the globe. 

The EMBA, according to the EMBAC (Executive MBA Council), gives students on average a 14.9% salary increase. Moreover, about 39% receive promotions after getting their degree. The EMBA can be very expensive and doesn’t necessarily guarantee success, but according to the GMAC, 94% of EMBA alumni say they would pursue an EMBA again. It is sometimes possible to have employers pay for an EMBA program as well. 

The EA is Accepted for the MBA

Let’s say you may not be interested in becoming an executive – the EA can still help you in furthering your career goals through getting an MBA. The EA is nowadays being accepted more and more often for MBA programs. Part-time, online, Business master’s programs, and even full MBA programs accept the EA. Also, there are great opportunities that come with a good EA score. An MBA gives you ample networking opportunities and top-notch education to really help you in a professional setting, especially with management skills. On top of this, many MBA graduates are among the best paid in any industry. Most companies put a lot of value into an MBA and receiving one can give you a lot of international exposure and even help you move and get a job in a different country. Overall, an MBA is a great way to help bolster your reputation and your resume. 

Top Global Business School Programs Accepting the Executive Assessment

1. American University of Dubai (EMBA Program)
2. University of California Berkeley Haas School of Business (EMBA and Part Time MBA)
3. The University of Chicago Booth School of Business (EMBA and Part-Time MBA)
4. Georgetown University McDonough School of Business (MBA and EMBA)
5. Imperial College Business School (EMBA and Online MBA)
6. Nanyang Business School (Professional MBA)
7. Singapore Management University (EMBA)
8. Stanford Graduate School of Business (MSx)
9. University of Cambridge Cambridge Judge Business School (EMBA)
10. Yale School of Management (EMBA) 

Final Thoughts

The EA is the optimal exam for any professional having trouble balancing the prep time for the GMAT. The EA will gain you admission into an EMBA program which is difficult but extremely rewarding. What the EA can also do, is help you get into other business programs like MBAs. But nevertheless, the EA is a difficult exam and here at Apex GMAT we can help you with world-class tutoring services. The opportunities the EA provides are great, as the exam will give you access to amazing programs without the hassle of the GMAT and will help you towards a brighter career future.


Contributor: Lukas Duncan

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Pieces of Pi: Sectors, Arcs, and Central Angles
Posted on
Mar 2022

Pieces of Pi: Sectors, Arcs, and Central Angles

Welcome back to our series on GMAT circles. In the first article, we introduced the properties of radius/diameter, circumference, and area, discussing the relationships between all of these. This time we will introduce something called a central angle, which creates portions of a circle’s area and circumference called sectors and arcs, respectively.

The best way to define these things is probably with a simple visual.

Pieces of Pi

A central angle is an angle created by using line segments to connect a circle’s center to two points on its edge. A sector is the part of a circle’s area bounded by this central angle, and an arc is the part of a circle’s circumference between the two points used to draw the angle. A 90-degree central angle creates both a 90-degree sector and a 90-degree arc. An important note is that the lines used to form the central angle are radii of the circle.

As a further illustration, think about a pizza (something I do regularly). The pizza is a circle, the pieces are sectors separated by central angles, the crust is the circle’s circumference, and each piece’s section of crust is an arc. From this, you can see that any central angle creates both a sector and an arc that correspond to one another. When you pull a piece from a pizza or cut out a piece from a pie, you use a central angle to create a sector with an arc on its rounded edge.

To represent these things mathematically, we consider a circle to be like a 360-degree central angle. In this setup, the fractional relationship of a central angle to 360 corresponds to two things:

  1. The fractional relationship of the resulting sector to the circle’s total area
  2. The fractional relationship of the resulting arc to the circle’s total circumference

Since 90 is ¼ of 360, the area of a 90-degree sector is ¼ of its circle’s total area, and the length of a 90-degree arc is ¼ of its circle’s circumference.

To show all of this algebraically, let’s use the variable x for the degree measure of a central angle:

x / 360 = arc length / circumference
x / 360 = sector area / circle area 

Most pizzas are divided into 8 slices. This means that each slice has a central angle of 360/8 = 45° and that each slice is ⅛ of the area of the entire pizza.


1. What is the central angle for three slices of pizza?
The central angle formed by 3 slices of pizza is 3 * 360 / 8 = 135 degrees.

2. What’s the area of a slice if the diameter is 20cm and there are six slices?
The area of a slice of pizza is 1/6 of its pizza’s total area. So, the area of a pizza can be found by using this formula A= π*r2 = 3.14*102 = 314cm
The area of a slice of pizza is  314/ 6 = 52.33cm

Keep in mind that you may have to consider this relationship in either direction. You may be given some info about the whole circle and then tasked with concluding something about a sector or an arc. Or you may be given some info about a sector or an arc and then tasked with concluding something about the whole circle. You may even be given info about both the whole circle (its area or circumference) and a sector or arc and then tasked with calculating the central angle. Each of these represents a perspective shift, and when doing a problem form, you can rewrite the problem from each of these perspectives to make sure you can fully navigate problems of this sort.

Pieces of Pi: Official GMAT Problems

Now for some official GMAT problems. Let’s start with two straightforward sector problems, one problem solving and one data sufficiency.

Problem-Solving Problem 

The annual budget of a certain college is to be shown on a circle graph. If the size of each sector of the graph is to be proportional to the amount of the budget it represents, how many degrees of the circle should be used to represent an item that is 15 percent of the budget? 

A. 15°
B. 36°
C. 54°
D. 90°
E. 150°

From the question, we can tell that the “circle graph” mentioned here is what we usually call a “pie chart,” a handy way to show the breakdown of a whole (like a budget) into its various parts. If we want to represent 15% of the budget, we need a sector with a central angle using 15% of the (360) available degrees in the circle. 0.15 * 360 = 54, so the correct answer is C. Piece of cake. Or piece of pie.

Now for a DS pie chart problem


DS Pie Chart ProblemThe figure represents a circle graph of Company’s H total expenses broken down by the expenses for each of its five diversions. If O is the center of the circle and if Company H’s total expenses are $5,400,000, what are the expenses for Division R? 

1. x = 94
2. The total expenses for Division S and T are twice as much as the expenses for Division R.

Once again, this pie chart (which the GMAT apparently prefers to call a “circle graph”) is being used to represent a budget breakdown. Here we are told that the value represented by the whole circle is $5,400,000. We can think of this value as the area of the circle. We are asked for the expenses for division R, or in circle terms, the area of sector R.

Statement 1: x = 94

This is the measure of the central angle bounding the sector whose area we need to know (sector R). Since we already know the area of the whole circle, the measure of this central angle is the final piece of the puzzle. (Area of sector R = 94/360 * $5,400,000) Statement 1 is sufficient.

Statement 2: The total expenses for Divisions S and T are twice as much as the expenses for Division R.

This statement relates the total of two unknown sectors to another unknown sector. Given this statement alone, we don’t know the relationship of any of these sectors to the whole circle, so we can’t solve for any of their areas. Statement 2 is insufficient.

The answer:
Statement 1 is sufficient.
Statement 2 is insufficient.
The correct answer is A.

Pieces of Pi: More Difficult Problems

Let’s ratchet up the difficulty a bit with another sector problem that involves more smoke and mirrors.

Three identical circles problem

The figure consists of three identical circles that are tangent to each other. If the area of the shaded region is 64√3 – 32*π, what’s the radius of each circle?

A. 4
B. 8
C. 16
D. 24
E. 32

(tangent means just touching and not overlapping)

The problem mentions only three circles and a shaded region, but the graphic includes something more: an equilateral triangle drawn by connecting the centers of the three circles. You can solve this problem without knowing anything about the formula for the area of an equilateral triangle (although you should know this formula).  It should occur to you that the area of the shaded region could be expressed as the area of the triangle minus the combined area of those three sectors, which matches the given expression 64√3 – 32*π. So the (irrelevant) area of the triangle is 64√3, and the area of the three sectors is 32*π. 

You might start by trying to get the area of a single sector by dividing 32*π by 3. But 32 won’t divide nicely by 3, which should signal you to try something else. If you can’t go from the combined area of the three sectors to the area of one sector, maybe you can go from the combined area of the three sectors to the area of one circle. You might use your spatial reasoning and conclude that the three sectors together look like they make up half a circle. Or you might recall that each interior angle of an equilateral triangle measures 60 degrees. Therefore each of these sectors is ⅙ (60/360) of a whole circle, and the three of them together do indeed make up half a circle (3 * ⅙ = ½).

Now, if the sectors’ combined area is 32*π, and this is half a circle, then the area of the whole circle is 2 * 32*π = 64. Having found the area of a circle, we can now solve for the radius. 

A = 64 = π*r2
64 = r2
r = 8

And the correct answer choice is B.

Arc Length Problem

Let’s try one more problem, this time focusing on arc length.

The points R, T, and U lie on a circle that has radius 4. If the length of arc RTU is 4*π/3 what is the length of line segment RU?

A. 4/3
B. 8/3
C. 3
D. 4
E.  6

Points that “lie on a circle”

A note about points that “lie on a circle.” This always means that the points are on the edge or perimeter of the circle.

It may be helpful to visualize or even draw out what has been described here.

This is a good opportunity to introduce some terminology. We see that line segment RU connects two points on the circle. Such a line segment is called a chord. If the line continues on to either side of the circle so that the circle is “skewered,” the line is called a secant (the GMAT does not expect you to know this term). When a chord or secant passes through the circle’s center, it creates a diameter. A line outside a circle that just touches the circle at one point is called a tangent.

If you aren’t sure how to calculate the length of a chord like RU, start with what you know. We are given the length of arc RTU (4*π/3) and the radius of the circle. A good step is to calculate the circumference of the circle so that we can see how it relates to arc RTU. 

C = 2*π*r
C = 2*π*4
C = 8*π

The circumference is 8*π, and arc RTU is 4*π/3. 8*π/6 = 4*π/3. Therefore arc RTU represents ⅙ of the circumference of the circle, and its corresponding central angle is 60 degrees (360/6). Drawing out this information helps us to see its relevance.

The length of line segment RUThe central angle and chord RU form an equilateral triangle. Since the radius of the circle is 4, chord RU also has length 4, and the correct answer is D.

This concludes our second article on the GMAT’s treatment of circles. Next time we will look at another kind of angle inside a circle: an inscribed angle, and at the related topic of inscribed polygons.


Contributor: Elijah Mize (Apex GMAT Instructor)

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Top 5 EA Memorization Techniques
Posted on
Mar 2022

Top 5 EA Memorization Techniques

We here at Apex always tell our clients to find what works for them and stick to it. Believe it or not, there is little need to struggle when trying to memorize certain test-taking techniques. Often a simpler solution path is always readily available. Our tutors at Apex are professionals when it comes to helping EA test takers. We teach our clients tips which suit their mental and cognitive abilities. This type of teaching is called Cognitive Empathy. How it works is that we do not force clients into a ‘one-size-fits-all’ box of EA test-prep steps and solution paths. Instead, we work with and support our clients by tailoring our approach so that they have a toolkit of skills which fit their personal needs and capabilities. Here we list four EA memorization techniques which all of our clients learn.  

1. Memorize the answer layout. 

On the EA, some question types have the same responses. On the Data Sufficiency portion, for example, answers are presented in the same way. These are: 

  1. Statement (1) ALONE is sufficient, but statement (2) alone is not sufficient
  2. Statement (2) ALONE is sufficient, but statement (1) alone is not sufficient
  3. Both statements TOGETHER are sufficient, but NEITHER statement ALONE is sufficient
  4. EACH statement ALONE is sufficient
  5. Statements (1) and (2) TOGETHER are NOT sufficient

To make the test easier, you can memorize these statements since their order and wording stay the same. We suggest memorizing them in a more simple form. For example: 

  1. Only Statement 1 
  2. Only Statement 2
  3. Only Both Statements together
  4. Each statement alone 

This as a memorization technique will help you cut down on the time you spend on the test. You won’t need to reread the answers each time you encounter them.  

2. Practice vocabulary during the day

This may sound like a fairly simple and obvious trick but trust us. This EA memorization technique helps! The vocabulary section of the EA can be tricky especially if you find your English language skills are subpar. Often people stick to flashcards to help them memorize terms and concepts. While this tactic can be useful, we found that to really engrain the meaning of complex words it is best to use them throughout the day.

We suggest deciding on a handful of words that you consider exceptionally difficult to memorize and commit to using them throughout the day. This will help you learn to structure the word within a sentence while learning how to use the word properly. In addition to using daily vocabulary, we suggest keeping a notebook of the most difficult terms you have come across and reviewing them as your vocabulary grows! 

3. Use Acronyms and Mnemonics

Being out of school for a while means you are likely struggling with remembering math concepts and equations? The EA quantitative portion may appear overwhelming to test-takers. We understand this, which is why we teach our clients how to avoid using math on the EA altogether! But sometimes, the best solution path is the most direct and obvious one. Here are some tricks to remembering some basic math equations and formulas: 

  • Simple Interest Formula
    • Interest = principal x rate x time 
    • I = prt 
    • Remember the equation as: I am Pretty!
  • Distance Formula 
    • Distance = rate x time
    • D = rt
    • This equation can be remembered as the word: dirt 
  • Linear Equation
    • Y = mx + b 
    • B for begin / M for move 
    • To graph a line, begin at the B-value and move according to the m-value (slope) 
  • Multiplying Binomials 
    • (x – a)(x + b) 
    • Remember FOIL for the order: 
      • First
      • Outside
      • Inside
      • Last 
  • Order of Operations
    • When answering an equation which looks something like this: 7 x (4 / 6) + 2 = remember: PEMDAS or Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally 
    • Parentheses 
    • Exponents 
    • Multiplication
    • Division
    • Addition
    • Subtraction 

4. Applying visual meanings to things 

This trick is most useful if you plan on taking the EA online. During your studying, look at what is around you and apply meaning to objects. For example, when working on a certain type of math problem, work out the solution while staring at the radiator in your room. Then, while taking the exam (if you are taking the EA online), look at the radiator if you come in contact with a similar type of problem. This visual trick helps your brain remember since you will be correlating that which you have recently studied with the image of the radiator. If you are taking the EA onsite, consider studying while wearing the same pieces of clothes or jewelry which you will wear during your test. Perhaps play with a bracelet or watch while memorizing words, or wear a comfy sweater which you associate with certain mnemonic devices. We teach our clients this trick and it definitely helps them during the test! 

5. Apply the knowledge you are learning often

Reading things from a textbook and taking notes is one thing. But it is a completely different thing to practically apply the information you are learning. Completing one or two practice questions won’t automatically make you a whiz at that particular type of problem (even if you got the correct answer). Instead, make sure to practice in different locations and use different mediums (such as at a restaurant, while riding the train into work, or while cooking dinner). Doing this will challenge your brain to think strategically in various situations and under different circumstances. You can do this type of learning with the quantitative and qualitative portions of the exam.

Final Thoughts 

However straightforward these EA memorization techniques may seem, they nonetheless require work and dedication. As I am sure you know, hard work does pay off in the long run! The amount of work you put into your studying can dictate where you end up attending school, plus it can help with your future job search. While you are not your EA score, your test score does play a large role in your overall application to your dream school! If you are looking for extra support while preparing for the EA, we here at Apex offer bespoke one-on-one tutoring with high-achieving clients. You can schedule a complimentary, 30-minute consultation call with one of our tutors to learn more! 


Contributor: Dana Coggio

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