What books/resources should I use to study?

Some Clarity on GMAT Books and Resources

You’re probably just starting out with your GMAT prep and, considering that there are a million options in terms of books, courses, GMAT tutors, questions banks, practice tests and so on, it’s understandable that you may be looking for some help sorting through things.

Let’s think about resources in two categories:

  1. Instruction

  2. Practice

Let’s start with practice

The practice part is simple. Base your preparation on official GMAT questions. Avoiding third party resources is especially important on verbal.

What books, questions banks, and practice tests you buy depends on your starting score and your goals. The bigger the goals the more practice you’ll need (most likely).

Here is a list of all Official GMAT books along with descriptions and suggestions for how to use them.

Some of those resources are from 2021, but the 2022 versions are the same so the write-ups are just as valid.

Just want to get started?

You can’t go wrong buying the GMAT Official Guide and then deciding on additional resources later on.

If you know that you’re in it for the long haul and want a top shelf score then you might just get one of the bundles that includes all of the official practice tests as you will want those.

Learning GMAT

The learning is a bit more challenging.

You can take a class, do a video on demand/self-study course, hire a tutor, or self-study.

Any of those options could work. It really depends on your profile.

Have you excelled with a certain type of learning (class, tutoring, self-study) in the past?

Do you love standardized tests?

Do you have a very limited amount of time to study?

What’s the budget?

The point is. Think about your needs/constraints and use those to guide your decision making.

If you opt for self-study then look up explanations/strategies on GMAT Club (or other GMAT forums).

There is a ton of great information out there. Probably all you need.

The big issue is that it is a tangled mess and all smooshed together with low quality content.

If self-studying: dig for the gold!

Be picky with the strategies that you take on.

Avoid just adopting the first thing you find.

Dig for the gold!

Get organized with our study schedules

We also have a whole bunch of helpful guidance on the Atlantic GMAT blog, including an example study schedule that could help get you organized.


How you approach your GMAT prep (learning and practice) is highly dependent on your profile, starting score, and goal.

Main thing I’d suggest to do now: take an official GMAT practice test

If you haven’t done so already then take a diagnostic and set a goal based on the median score of the MBA programs to which you would like to apply.

Here are some helpful details on taking the first diagnostic and just getting started in general.

Once you have that done you should have a better idea of what type of support you’ll need.

Hopefully that gets you going in the right direction. Follow up with any questions in the comments. Good luck with your GMAT studies!