Many students who start preparing for GMAT wonder whether their previous experience with SAT will count for anything. So is GMAT similar to SAT? Well, yes and no!
Expectedly, GMAT is harder than the SAT. The GMAT is trickier while the SAT tends to be more straightforward. However, some sections and questions do tend to overlap. Some of the skills required by test takers to ace both these exams also fall in the same striking zone. Both the exams offer multiple choice questions to students.
The GMAT Math section is traditionally known to be tough. However, many of the basic concepts such as geometry, algebra, number properties are all tested in the SAT as well. GMAT math questions tend to focus more on the logic of the questions whereas SAT questions are typically more calculation-oriented. Of course, due to the adaptive nature of the GMAT, the questions from this section can get significantly tougher depending on the correct answers.
Similar trends follow in the verbal section. While the underlying concepts are maybe similar, the questions in GMAT tend to be a lot more about logic than straightforward questions in SAT. Also, the reading comprehension passages tend to be relatively simpler in SAT as opposed to the dense, heavy passages presented in the GMAT.
The GMAT essay requires you to analyze an argument and write a critique. The SAT essay is more straightforward inviting opinions on a given prompt.
There are other areas such as integrated reasoning, critical reasoning, and data sufficiency which are not present in the SAT at all. You need to work hard towards understanding these question types and selecting the right answer. Moreover, the GMAT answer choices tend to be more close to each other with only subtle differences between the right and wrong answers.
So, while the underlying concepts for the maximum portion of both the exams might overlap, a good SAT score is not a guarantee of a good GMAT score. GMAT is a much more competitive exam that demands sound preparation strategies. Just as you probably took an SAT prep class, you should also take a similar test preparation class for the GMAT.