About GMAT Reading Comprehension

The format of the reading comprehension section is simple: a passage up to 500 words long on a topic from the social sciences, humanities, sciences, or business-related fields is followed by 3-5 questions measuring your ability to comprehend, reason, infer, dissect, and apply the information in the passage.

The GMAT's reading comprehension passages and questions do not require you to have existing knowledge about the material discussed. Nonetheless, most students perform better if they happen to see passages and questions discussing topics about which they are familiar.

The official directions for reading comprehension problems are as follows:

The questions in this group are based on the content of a passage. After reading the passage, choose the best answer to each question. Answer all questions following the passage on the basis of what is stated or implied in the passage.1


  1. Source: 11th Edition Official Guide GMAT Review, page 638. [Back]