Gmat math formulas

Gmat math formulas DEFAULT

GMAT Prep Online Guides and Tips


Have you ever heard of Dave Hopla? He’s a basketball coach. Well, more specifically, he’s a basketball shooting coach. Throughout his career, he’s made 98 percent of the shots he’s taken. And, he trains players to do the same. How? By mastering the fundamentals.

You might be wondering why I’m beginning an article about the GMAT by talking about a basketball coach. Well, in this article, I’m going to be talking about the importance of mastering GMAT math formulas. Mastering GMAT math formulas is like practicing your free throw if you’re a basketball player. It’s a way to build up your fundamental skills so that, on test day, you’re able to achieve your goal score.

In this article, I’ll talk about why GMAT quant formulas are important, break down the most important formulas to know by subject, and give you some tips for how to incorporate formulas into your prep. I’ll also give you access to a downloadable PDF that you can use to practice offline.


Why Do You Need to Know Math Formulas for the GMAT?

Spending time learning and memorizing GMAT formulas may seem like an overly simple task in light of the complex questions you’ll face on the GMAT quant section, but studying these formulas is an important part of reaching your goal score.

Despite the notoriety of the GMAT quant section, the questions on this section actually test basic math concepts that are presented in complex ways. Mastering fundamentals, like formulas, will help you solve these questions because you’ll be able to figure out the answers to each individual part of the problem, leading to your final answer.

Not sure how or what to study? Confused by how to improve your score in the shortest time possible? We've created the only Online GMAT Prep Program that identifies your strengths and weaknesses, customizes a study plan, coaches you through lessons and quizzes, and adapts your study plan as you improve.

We believe PrepScholar GMAT is the best GMAT prep program available, especially if you find it hard to organize your study schedule and don't want to spend a ton of money on the other companies' one-size-fits-all study plans.

     Improve Your GMAT Score by 60 Points, Guaranteed     

The GMAT quant section only tests math concepts that you would’ve learned in high school. So, learning basic formulas will go a long way in ensuring you understand how to solve different questions.

Learning formulas is also a big time-saver. You only have a limited amount of time for the GMAT quant section, so you’ll need to work quickly and efficiently to answer every question, which is important to do so that you maximize your score.

By learning these formulas, you’ll be able to easily recall what you should do to answer each question. You’ll save time by using the most efficient methods for solving a question.

The GMAT quant section doesn’t allow you to use a calculator. So, you won’t be able to easily do long, complex calculations. Learning formulas will help you because you’ll have tools at your disposal to figure out different measurements or calculations without technology.

While learning formulas is an important part of studying for the GMAT, it’s not all you should do to prepare for the quant section. As I mentioned before, while the actual math on the GMAT is relatively simple, the questions are presented in a complex way. You’ll need to spend time applying your formula knowledge by practicing the different styles of questions on the GMAT. Studying in this way will help you feel prepared for the questions you’ll see on test day.




GMAT Quant Formulas

In this section, I’ll break down the most important formulas for you to know for the GMAT. I’ve broken them down by math topic so that they’re easier to sort through.


GMAT Geometry Formulas

Geometry questions make up about 20% of the questions test on the GMAT quant section. Use these formulas to master the content covered on those questions.




  • Area = $\length^2$
  • Perimeter = 4*length


  • Area = length*width
  • Perimeter = 2(length) + 2(width)


  • Area = base*height
  • Perimeter = 2(base) + 2(height)



  • Area = $πr^2$
  • Circumference = $2πr$


  • Area = $(\base*\height)/2$
  • Pythagorean Theorem: $a^2 + b^2 = c^2$



  • Area = $(1/2)*(a+b)/h$, where a and b are the length of the parallel sides



Central angle = 2(inscribed angle)

Area of a sector = $(x/360)*πr^2$, where $x $is the measurement of the central angle of the circle portion in degrees




Cube: $(\length)^3$

Rectangular prism: length*width*height

Cylinder: $πr^2*h$

Cone: $1/3πr^2*h$

Pyramid: $1/3(\base \length*\base \width*\height)$

Sphere: $4/3πr^3$


GMAT Arithmetic Formulas

Arithmetic concepts are one of the most heavily tested content areas on the GMAT quant section, making up nearly 50% of GMAT quant question types. These GMAT quant formulas address the majority of concepts covered on the GMAT.



Parentheses – Exponents – Multiplication – Division – Addition – Subtraction (PEMDAS)



(Positive Number) * (Positive Number) = (Positive Number)

(Positive Number) * (Negative Number) = (Negative Number)

(Negative Number) * (Negative Number) = (Positive Number)

(Positive Number) / (Positive Number) = (Positive Number)

(Positive Number) / (Negative Number) = (Negative Number)

(Negative Number) / (Negative Number) = (Positive Number)

(Odd Number) + (Odd Number) = (Even Number)

(Odd Number) – (Odd Number) = (Even Number)

(Odd Number) + (Even Number) = (Odd Number)

(Odd Number) – (Even Number) = (Odd Number)

(Even Number) + (Even Number) = (Even Number)

(Even Number) – (Even Number) = (Even Number)

(Odd Number) * (Odd Number) = (Odd Number)

(Odd Number) * (Even Number) = (Even Number)

(Even Number) * (Even Number) = (Even Number)





Permutation formula: $nPr = n!/(n-r)!$

Combination formula: $nCr = n!/((r!)(n-r)!)$



Probability = (Number of favorable outcomes) / (Number of all possible outcomes)

Probability of events A & B happening = (Probability of A) * (Probability of B)

Probability of either event A or B happening = (Probability of A) + (Probability of B)


GMAT Algebra Formulas

Algebra questions make up about 20% of the question types you’ll see on the GMAT quant section.



|x| depicts absolute value.

|x| = x

|-x| = x

|x| = |-x|

|x| ≥ 0

|x| + |y| ≥ |x+y|



In the expression $x^n$, ‘x’ is the base and ‘n’ is the exponent. The way to interpret is that the base ‘x’ gets multiplied ‘n’ times. For example, $2^3=2*2*2$.

Some key rules and formulas for exponents:

$0^n = 0$

$1^n = 1$

$x^0 = 1$

$x^1 = x$

$(x)^-n = 1/x^n$

$x^m*x^n = x^(m+n)$

$x^m/x^n = x^(m-n)$

$(x/y)^n = (x^n)/(y^n)$

$(x^m)^n = x^(m*n)$



$ax^2 + bx + c = 0$

$x = (-b ∓ √[b^2 – 4ac]) / 2a$



All interest formulas use the following variables: P = starting principle; r = annual interest rate; t = number of years.

Simple Interest = P*r*t

Annual Compound Interest = $P(1+r)t$

Compound Interest = P(1 + r/x)^(xt); x = number of times the interest compounds over the year


OTHER Algebra Formulas

Distance = Speed * Time

Wage = Rate * Time




PrepScholar GMAT Formula Sheet

Download our GMAT formula sheet to help you study your GMAT formulas.


How to Incorporate GMAT Formulas in Your Prep

As I mentioned before, simply memorizing the formulas I gave you above isn’t a good way to prepare for the GMAT quant section. In order to ensure your formula prep really helps your score, you’ll need to apply your formula mastery. Follow these tips to make your formula knowledge work for you.


#1: Use Flashcards

Flashcards are a great tool for memorizing GMAT math formulas because they’re easy to use and effective. You can quickly review flashcards on your commute or before you go to bed at night or while you’re scarfing down breakfast on the way to class… really, you can review flashcards any time, any place! By spending time memorizing formulas with flashcards, you’ll be able to quickly recall what you’ll need to do to solve a problem.

Flashcards require you to actively engage with the material. For instance, rather than just trying to memorize a list of many different formulas you’ll use on the quant section, you’ll engage with each formula one by one. You’ll be forced to ask yourself whether or not you really know how to use the formula in a quick, concise way.




#2: Understand the Underlying Concepts

While memorizing formulas is great, understanding the underlying concepts of each formula is better. Don’t just know what the formulas are – know how they work and, better yet, how to apply them. Understanding the underlying concepts means that you’ve reached a deeper level of learning beyond simply memorizing. If you’re able to understand something, you’ll be able to apply it to solve a question much more easily.

Want to Identify YOUR GMAT Strengths and Weaknesses?

Our proprietary GMAT Diagnostic Assessment creates a customized study plan for you that takes you from registration all the way to test day! It is included with every account and proven to significantly maximize your score.

Get your personalized assessment as part of your 5 day risk-free trial now:

Get Your Free GMAT Diagnostic Assessment Here

Take the formula for area of a sector of a circle: (x/360) * πr2

If you know that a sector is part of a circle that has its own interior angle measurement and you know that the area of a circle is πr2, it makes sense that you can find the area of a sector by multiplying that interior angle by the overall area of the circle.


#3: Apply GMAT Math Formulas by Practicing Real GMAT Questions

Memorizing formulas won’t help you if you don’t apply your knowledge. The GMAT quant section tests basic concepts in complex ways. You’ll need to spend time familiarizing yourself with the ways that the GMAT asks questions. It won’t simply ask you to find the area of triangle; you might need to find the area of a triangle on your way to discovering how much it costs to put fencing around a triangle-shaped yard.

Spend time learning the style of both problem solving and data sufficiency questions, so that you’ll be able to use your GMAT math formulas to easily get to the correct answer. The best way to practice for the GMAT is to use real retired GMAT questions, which you can find in the official GMAT guides or in the GMATPrep Software. Real, retired GMAT questions best emulate the style and content of what you’ll see on test day.




What’s Next?

Looking for a more in-depth review of the quant section? There’s a lot you need to know to be able to reach your GMAT goal score. Our guide to the GMAT quant section teaches you the ten essential tips you need to know to master the most notorious section of the GMAT.

We also offer more specific guides that break down the data sufficiency and problem solving question types on the GMAT. Learn about the types of content covered on the problem solving questions and the trick to mastering the difficult data sufficiency questions, while also learning how to solve sample questions.

Want to focus on a different part of the GMAT? We also offer in-depth guides to the verbal section, as well as tips for how to do well on the analytical writing assessment (link coming soon!). Check out those guides to boost your all-around GMAT scores and get into the business program of your dreams.

Was this helpful? Sign up for FREE GMAT and MBA guides!




GMAT Club Daily Prep

Thank you for using the timer - this advanced tool can estimate your performance and suggest more practice questions. We have subscribed you to Daily Prep Questions via email.

for You

we will pick new questions that match your level based on your Timer History

Your Progress

every week, we’ll send you an estimated GMAT score based on your performance


we will pick new questions that match your level based on your Timer History

Not interested in getting valuable practice questions and articles delivered to your email? No problem, unsubscribe here.

Go to My Error LogLearn more

Hello Guest!

It appears that you are browsing the GMAT Club forum unregistered!

Signing up is free, quick, and confidential.
Join 700,000+ members and get the full benefits of GMAT Club

Registration gives you:

  • Tests

    Take 11 tests and quizzes from GMAT Club and leading GMAT prep companies such as Manhattan Prep. All are free for GMAT Club members.

  • Applicant Stats

    View detailed applicant stats such as GPA, GMAT score, work experience, location, application status, and more

  • Books/Downloads

    Download thousands of study notes, question collections, GMAT Club’s Grammar and Math books. All are free!

and many more benefits!



Joined: 21 Apr 2017

Posts: 6

Own Kudos [?]: 2 [0]

Given Kudos: 2

GMAT Formula Cheat Sheet [#permalink] New post   Jun 28, 2017 2:31 pm

Hi guys,

I'm just looking for a kind soul to share their GMAT formula cheat sheet with me. A quick Google search did not yield any good result, so anything that has formulas used commonly on the GMAT would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

GMAT Club Legend

GMAT Club Legend

Joined: 12 Sep 2015

Posts: 5816

Own Kudos [?]: 19427 [16]

Given Kudos: 688

Location: Canada

Top Member of the Month
Re: GMAT Formula Cheat Sheet [#permalink] New post   Jun 28, 2017 2:38 pm

You'll find our GMAT Math flashcards here: ... 09481.html




Joined: 21 Apr 2017

Posts: 6

Own Kudos [?]: 2 [2]

Given Kudos: 2

Re: GMAT Formula Cheat Sheet [#permalink] New post   Jun 28, 2017 2:51 pm

GMATPrepNow wrote:

You'll find our GMAT Math flashcards here: ... 09481.html


Thank you so much! This is exactly what I needed. :-D
User avatar

Non-Human User

Joined: 09 Sep 2013

Posts: 20755

Own Kudos [?]: 617 [1]

Given Kudos: 0

Re: GMAT Formula Cheat Sheet [#permalink] New post   Nov 21, 2020 5:09 pm

Hello from the GMAT Club BumpBot!

Thanks to another GMAT Club member, I have just discovered this valuable topic, yet it had no discussion for over a year. I am now bumping it up - doing my job. I think you may find it valuable (esp those replies with Kudos).

Want to see all other topics I dig out? Follow me (click follow button on profile). You will receive a summary of all topics I bump in your profile area as well as via email.

GMAT Club Bot

Re: GMAT Formula Cheat Sheet [#permalink]

Nov 21, 2020 5:09 pm

  1. Wikileaks human trafficking
  2. Setting carb
  3. Rocky patel freedom review
  4. Medieval pink dress
  5. Garmin etrex

GMAT Math Formulas You Should Know

If you suffer from ‘quantphobia’, you are not the only one. The key to a good score in quant section of the GMAT is to follow the best preparation strategies. There are some topics which are often tested in the GMAT. You should memorize the key GMAT math formulas related to these topics to make sure that you are well prepared to tackle the questions. These formulas will cover many questions in the GMAT.

GMAT Math Formulas that you should know:

  1. Speed Distance Time: Average Speed= Total Distance\ Total Time. Similarly, distance= rate x time. You will see a lot of speed, distance and rate problems in the GMAT. However, the questions will not be straightforward.
  2. Area and Volume of Geometrical Shapes – The area of a triangle ½ x (base) x (height). Any side can be chosen as the base but the height should be perpendicular to the base and go through the opposing vertex. Similarly, area of circle is
    A = πr2 where r is radius. Similarly, volume of a cube is a3 where a represents the length of a side. Know the area, volume and perimeter formulas for basic geometrical shapes.
  3. Pythagoras Theorem – In a right angled triangle A2 + B2 = C2 where C is the hypotenuse and A, B are the other sides.
  4. Average – Average is nothing but (sum of values)\(number of  values). You can use this formula for a lot of problems.
  5. Permutations and Combinations – Again, a very important area in GMAT. Permutation formula for n objects is n!\(n-r)! where n is the number of options and r is number of selected options. Similarly for Combinations, the formula for number of combinations is n!\ r! (n-r)! where n is the total size and r is the number of elements selected.

Apart from these areas, you should also know about number properties, basic statistics, ratio and proportions, system of equations, fractions and percentages. It is also a good idea to learn squares and cubes of numbers till 10.

The formulas and concepts listed above are building blocks for the quant section of GMAT. Mastering them will significantly improve your chances of a high score in the math section of GMAT.

What else you can do inside qs leap ?

2500+ Free
Practice Questions

Get Free Access to 2500+ GMAT/GRE Questions

Learn more

30 Min
Prep Classes

Attend Free GMAT/GRE Prep Classes Everyday

Learn more

Virtual One-to-One

On-demand online meetings with Admissions Teams for free

Learn more

Learn the above mentioned formulas and attempt a few questions.

GMAT Math 2019 – The Math You Need To Study!

GMAT Math Formulas List

View as PDF

To achieve a good score on the math section, it is essential that you memorize the necessary GMAT math formulas. Below, you will find a free review sheet full of formulas that are used frequently on the quantitative section.

Algebra Formulas

Exponential Equations

xn*xm = xn + m
(xn)/(xm) = x n - m
(x/y)n = (xn)/(yn)
xn*yn = (xy)n
(xy)z = xyz
x-n = 1/(xn)
1n = 1
x0 = 1
0n = 0, except 00 = 1 or undefined
FV = CV(1 + g)T

Quadratic Equations

ax2 + bx + c = 0.
quadratic formula


Simple Interest = P*r*t
P = starting principle; r = annual interest rate; t = number of years
Annual Compound Interest = P(1+r)t
Compound Interest = P(1 + r/x)xt x = number of times the interest compounds over the year


Distance = Rate*Time
Wage = Rate*Time

Arithmetic Formulas


Combinations:nCk = n!/((n-k)k!)!
Permutations:nPk = n!/(n-k)!
Circular: (n-1)!
k = number of objects selected from a pile of n objects
n = total number of objects from which k objects can be selected


(a/b)/(c/d) = (a/b) * (d/c)


Percent Change, as a decimal = (New - Old)/Old
N = (1 + G)O; N = New Value, 0 = Old Value, G = Growth Rate as decimal


Probability that event E occurs = P(E) = (Number of outcomes in E) / (Total number of possible outcomes)
P(not E) = 1 - P(E)
P(E or F) = P(E) + P(F) - P(E and F)
P(E and F) = P(E)P(F)

Number Properties

(Odd)(Even) = Even
(Odd)(Odd) = Odd
(Even)(Even) = Even

(Odd) ± (Even) = Odd
(Odd) ± (Odd) = Even
(Even) ± (Even) = Even

(Positive)(Positive) = Positive
(Positive)(Negative) = Negative
(Negative)(Negative) = Positive
(Positive)/(Negative) = Negative
(Positive)/(Positive) = Positive
(Negative)/(Negative) = Positive


Average (Arithmetic Mean): (sum of all numbers)/(number of numbers)
Median: the middle number (or average of the two middle numbers if there are an even number of figures) when all values are arranged in ascending order
Mode: the mos frequently occuring value in a dataset

Geometry Formulas


Sum of Interior Angles of Polygon = (n-2)(180)
n = number of sides of a polygon
Central Angle = 2(Inscribed Angle)


Square: A = a2
Rectangle: A = lw
Parallelogram: A = bh
Trapezoid: A = .5(a+c)h, where a and c are the lengths of the parallel sides


π = pi = 3.1415
Area: A = πr2
Circumference: C = 2πr
Central Angle = 2(Inscribed Angle)
Area of Sector = (x/360)πr2


Square: P = 4l
Rectangle: P = 2w + 2l
Parallelogram: P = 2b + 2a, where a and b are the lengths of the non-parallel sides
Circle: P = 2πr


Area: A = .5bh
Pythagorean Theorem: A2 + B2 = C2 where A = one leg, B = the other leg, C = hypotenuse


Cube: V = a3 where a is the length of a side
Rectangular Solid: V = hwl
Cylinder: V = πr2h


Formulas gmat math


Everything You Need to Know About the GMAT Math Section


You will also like:


577 578 579 580 581