Kaplan GMAT Review

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Prep Test Pros

Updated: December 8, 2021

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✅ Over 5000 practice questions

✅ Adaptive questions-answer bank

✅ Official test-day experience

Kaplan provides a wide range of courses together with unique features such as an official test day experience, and an adaptive Qbank.

 

However, their courses are on the expensive end of the spectrum. But if money is not an issue this is a solid program to help you get ready for the GMAT.

The Kaplan GMAT course combines over 5000 practice questions, nine computer-adaptive tests, a mobile quiz bank, and test-day simulation into a truly productive study experience.

However, that’s not all that determines if a GMAT prep course is suitable for an individual MBA aspirant; it also depends on one’s budget, and Kaplan GMAT packages with their exclusive features rack up some of the steepest prices on the market. 

This Kaplan GMAT review covers some of the features, and pros and cons of the course, including how it stacks up against the competition so you can determine whether it’s the one for you. Read on the get the full Kaplan GMAT review from the experts at Prep Test Pros.

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About Kaplan

In the test-prep scene, Kaplan is king not just because it’s over eight decades old but because it adheres to the current trends in the testing scenes. The company pairs high-quality test materials and intuitive algorithms to provide learners with dynamic exam prep experiences.

The company was founded in 1938 by Stanley Kaplan to help students prepare for various standardized exams. Each year, the company enables millions of students to crush their GREs, SATs, TOEFL, and GMAT. Kaplan now serves students in over 36 countries worldwide.

Kaplan GMAT Overview

Kaplan provides a full GMAT prep course, on-demand or live. It includes over 100 hours of practice and guided prep from the best GMAT instructors.

You will get nine practice tests, a Qbank, GMAT textbooks, access to the GMAT channel for recorded video lessons, and the official test day experience simulation. There’s also the option of private one-on-one tutoring courtesy of the company’s partnership with Manhattan Prep.

Overall, this course suits students looking for a robust curriculum supported by a mountain of study materials and exclusive features to ensure fantastic study experiences.

Features of Kaplan GMAT

  • A comprehensive GMAT prep course, on-demand or live
  • Over 140 hours of guided study and practice
  • Nine computer-adaptive practice tests
  • 24/7 access to the GMAT channel for video lessons
  • An adaptive Qbank that adjusts to your level
  • Over 5000 practice questions
  • Official test day experience
  • GMAT prep book for extra review and practice

Kaplan GMAT Prep plans and Pricing

Kaplan provides a pretty standard suite of course options for students, including a 100% Self-Paced course, a Live Online Course, and an In-Person program. The company uses these simple names instead of fancy ones like ultimate or Complete for transparency. Here’s a deep dive into the prep plans:

Self-paced

Kaplan’s Self-Paced course is 100% online and geared for learners who prefer a flexible study schedule. Expect no live classes. 

The material can be viewed at any time and from any location. There are two self-paced packages: a $599 plan and a $799 self-paced Plus plan. Here’s a look:

$599 self-paced

Once you purchase the package, you will have six months of access to the full on-demand course for prepping anyway, anytime. It includes:

  • 14 hours of recorded GMAT instructions    
  • 30 hours of archived video lessons in the GMAT Channel
  • Simulated test day experience
  • Nine full-length practice tests
  • Adaptive GMAT Qbank
  • Over 140 hours of guided study and practice
  • 5,000+ GMAT practice questions
  • Two GMAT prep books

$799 Self-Paced GMAT Plus

This package includes everything in the $599 package plus some:

  • More than 30 hours of optional live instruction on The GMAT Channel
  • Self-Paced GMAT Math Foundations (worth $299 value in value)

Live Course

Choose between a $1249 and a $1649 package and take live online classes taught by the top GMAT instructors. The classes are delivered in an interactive format. The course includes everything in the self-paced course. You will also get to ask questions, interact with fellow students, and access live and on-demand video lessons.

$1249 Live Package

  • 18 hours of live online GMAT instructions
  • More than 30 hours of optional live instruction on The GMAT Channel
  • A simulation of the official test day experience
  • Nine full-length practice tests
  • Adaptive GMAT Qbank
  • Over 140 hours of guided study and practice
  • 5,000+ GMAT practice questions
  • Two GMAT prep books

$1649 GMAT Live Package

  • Everything in the $1249 GMAT live online plan
  • 3 hours of one-on-one GMAT instructions  
  • Self-Paced GMAT Math Foundations (worth $299 value in value)

$2499 In-person

This course is offered in collaboration with Manhattan Prep GMAT. That means you’ll have access to excellent study resources as well as personalized attention. It’s a genuine classroom experience led by teachers who scored in the top 1% themselves. They will come to you, no matter where you are.

Standout features:

  • 27 hours of in-depth classroom GMAT instructions spread across nine sessions
  • Individualized pre- and post-exam reviews with an instructor
  • 35+ award-winning interactive video lessons to complement your course.
  • Six full-length computer-adaptive practice tests
  • A 13-book set of GMAT study guides covers every subject in the exam.

How’s the Kaplan GMAT Coursework and Curriculum

The Kaplan is a vigorous and well-developed curriculum. You will see a “Study Plan” section on the online portal, where lessons are categorized according to Quant, Verbal, AWA, and Integrated Reasoning sections.

Each section contains modules for each GMAT topic and which are further broken down into subtopics. Each module in a topic follows the same pattern – Before Class > Class, Session > After Class.

Before Class

The module’s “Before Class” section is a small introduction video (typically approximately 10 minutes long) that highlights what you may expect to learn in the upcoming Class. Consider this a refresher of what you studied in high school and undergrad school.

Class Session

The Class Session is where lessons are delivered using visual tools that boost content retention. Each class covers a different subtopic.

They are presented on an online whiteboard that’s constantly updated with fresh graphics, notes, and content. Most of the time, the instructor will show up on the screen in front of the whiteboard and break down concepts into digestible bits.

The instructor may occasionally pull out a neon blue marker and put notes on some invisible glass panel on the screen between you and them. The content in itself is fantastic. The instructors know what they are talking about and cover topics from every angle.

After Class Session

The After Class Session is where you are tested on the concepts you’ve just learned. It usually comprises 5 to 10 quizzes followed by assignments of further reading topics.

Kaplan GMAT Qbank

Each package provides access to the GMAT Qbank. This is a library of over 2500 realistic practice questions. You can select the questions by topic, difficulty, etc., and customize your preps. It’s a great opportunity to focus on your weaknesses.

It’s adaptive to your specific performance and goals. You can create focused practice problems and tweak timing requirements to raise the pressure needed for max improvement. 

Each practice question is accompanied by a written explanation that breaks it down, analyses what makes it difficult, and explains the correct and wrong answer choices.

The explanations are not as in-depth as those offered by other GMAT courses, but still, they are clear and well-articulated.

Kaplan GMAT Practice Tests

One of the most important aspects of any prep course, and one of the biggest considerations when determining which GMAT prep course is best, is the quality and quantity of practice tests. Fortunately for Kaplan, they deliver in both categories.

Offering nine full-length, computer-adaptive GMAT tests. Indeed, the company is bested only by Princeton Review with respect to the number of GMAT exams they provide.

The company’s practice tests impressively mimic the real GMAT questions. The company’s GMAT experts have spent hundreds of hours fine-tuning the material on their practice exams. Furthermore, the company’s test-taking software has this kind of retro feel, just like the real GMAT exam software.

Score Report

Finally, you will be issued a performance report; this is the last part of the course. Kaplan gives you the stats of your performance across various subtopics. These progress reports are not as fancy and detailed as those offered by examPAL or Magoosh.

Still, they’ll give you a pretty good idea of your performance across individual sections, so you know exactly where to put in more effort.

Kaplan GMAT Platform Interface and Dashboard

The Kaplan GMAT online platform is professional, clean, and responsive. The dashboard is easy to navigate and has only four sections that you can easily navigate using the drill-down function. These are:

  • The Study Plan
  • Recommendations
  • Qbank
  • GMAT Channel

The Qbank load speed is not that bad, but it’s also not fast because some questions take over 5 seconds to load. Furthermore, once you click on lessons and quizzes, they pop up in new tabs, a feature you may not prefer.

How About Kaplan GMAT Prep Books?

Once you purchase a Kaplan GMAT study package, you will get a shipment of hardcopy books to complement the online prep. These books contain additional practice problems, content, and strategies and generally track with the OnDemand and live online course.

If you are an old-school kind of student, you will love these books. They are detailed and well-written and include workbooks for taking the quizzes. You will also get an MBA admission guide containing resources about MBA schools and how to apply.

Kaplan GMAT Live Online Classes

As already mentioned, Kaplan offers two types of live GMAT classes delivered in an interactive format. The classes are conducted through scheduled webinar sessions, and students tune in to watch their Kaplan instructor provide the lesson.

You will get one or two 3-hour classes per week, and your participation is expected via video or chat.

There’s also the option of in-person classes, though not offered at the time of this review. The in-person classes are partnered with Manhattan Prep for students who prefer face-to-face instructions and interactions with other learners. 

This is more of a GMAT workshop than a lecture session and includes nine extra class hours. However, if you are not near the onsite learning center, you can still get the same structure and commitment from Live Online classes.

Kaplan One-On-One Tutoring

If you need even further structure in your prep, you can opt to work with a tutor. Kaplan offers private GMAT tutoring starting at $2,500 for 10 hours up to $5,000 for 40 hours. This is for students who are struggling to learn concepts and requires the services of a tutor. 

A Kaplan 99th percentile GMAT expert will come to you, work with you to develop a study plan, walk you through the lessons, review your work, provide feedback and test-taking strategies.

If you purchase Kaplan’s GMAT coaching, you will also get the Live Online Course at no extra cost.

Kaplan GMAT Channel

Another Kaplan-exclusive feature is the GMAT Channel, which has a library of online video lectures presented by the company’s highly-trained GMAT instructors.

Most teacher-led study packages give access to over 30 hours of recorded and live sorted according to difficulty, instructor, and topic. To customize your experience, simply pick options that correspond to your strengths, weaknesses, and learning style.

Kaplan’s Official Test Day Experience

Another feature exclusive to Kaplan GMAT subscribers and perhaps the reason for the higher prices is the official test day experience. This special pass lets you take one of your nine practice tests at a Pearson VUE testing location. 

This simulates exam-like conditions, whether it’s getting an idea of how much driving you will do to the exam center, getting used to the sitting arrangement, hardware, and testing environment, or just getting an idea of what a standardized test feels like.

It will help neutralize various test day variables and manage stress. Kaplan recommends taking this practice test around two weeks before your real GMAT. 

Does Kaplan have a Higher Score Guarantee?

Yes, Kaplan has a higher score guarantee on all its GMAT packages, including standalone purchases of practice pack and Qbank. The guarantee promises that the course will improve your GMAT score or refund your tuition fee in full.

However, terms and conditions apply. You must complete your study program, take the GMAT as soon as possible, and share your result with the company within three months after your test. Failure to fulfill any of these conditions will render you ineligible for a tuition fee refund.

Does Kaplan GMAT allow for a risk-free trial?

Yes, Kaplan has various offers for learners to take their GMAT course for a test drive. For example, you can sit in one of the GMAT classes for free; no credit is required. You can also take the practice test for free anytime, and you will get a detailed score analysis to identify your strengths and weaknesses.

Finally, if after purchasing the course you find it’s not as was advertised, you can ask to be refunded within seven days of purchase.

How Long is the Access Period?

Access to Kaplan online GMAT materials varies depending on the course package you select. The Self-Paced package will allow you to access online study materials up to 6 months following purchase. On the other hand, the Live Online course often restricts your access time to the course duration.

In addition, the In-Person course, provided in collaboration with Manhattan Prep, provides access to Manhattan’s GMAT materials for three more months after completing your course. Whichever prep option you decide to go with, they all provide

Regardless of the course you buy, these access periods are usually mid-range compared to other test prep companies. For example, Magoosh allows access for a full year, but Target Test Prep provides access for only four months. In any event, Kaplan provides sufficient time to get your prep done before the exam.

Does Kaplan GMAT Come with a Mobile App?

Yes, Kaplan GMAT is accompanied by a mobile app to complement your desktop account. However, it’s not as stellar as the app offered by Magoosh GMAT. It doesn’t tie all the course contents into one platform; its only highlight is the 500+ GMAT flashcards feature.

Kaplan GMAT Pros

  • Various prep options: self-paced, live online, in-person classes, and private tutoring
  • A huge Qbank
  • Nine full-length computer-adaptive GMAT practice tests
  • GMAT channel for extra video instructions and practice problems explanations
  • You can purchase standalone packages, e.g., the Qbank or practice tests, if you don’t have money for the full course
  • Official test day experience
  • Physical textbooks to complement the online course
  • Free trial offer
  • Higher score assurance backed by a money-back guarantee
  • Top 1% GMAT instructors
  • Decent six months long access period

Kaplan GMAT Cons

  • The mobile app doesn’t provide access to the online study materials
  • More expensive than most GMAT courses on the market
  • Questions may take more than 5 seconds to load from the Qbank
  • Not all practice questions have video explanations

Who Should Use Kaplan GMAT?

Anyone can prepare for their GMAT with the Kaplan course. There are various options available to suit different types of students, be it:

  • Self-driven learners who want to prep at their own time and pace
  • Visual learners: the course delivers GMAT instructions using some insane visual tools such as a digital whiteboard and neon blue marker pens
  • Linguistic learners:  You will get hardcopy GMAT books to complement the online course
  • Students who prefer live classroom instructions: The Live Online GMAT package includes 18 hours of live instructions
  • Students who want one-on-one GMAT instructions to help grasp difficult concepts can schedule private tutoring online or in-person
  • Busy students: the online course is comprehensive and available to users of desktop and mobile devices.

Wrap-Up 🎁

Kaplan GMAT Course offers students a range of prep options, from focused, self-guided plans to private tutoring. A variety of unique features accompany these packages and boost the success of your study in various ways. For example, you will get a Qbank that allows you to sample from a pool of 5000+ questions and create focused practice sessions.

There’s also the GMAT Channel containing archived video instructions and practice problems explanations. You will also get textbooks containing additional content, tips, and practice. All these features justify the higher prices. However, if you don’t want to purchase the full course, there’s an amazing offer in place to buy standalone packages at significantly reduced prices.

If you are interested in Kaplan GMAT and want to learn more, start today with the free trial offer: You can take a practice exam and get full score analysis, sit in one of the live classes or try the self-paced course risk-free for seven days.  You can also check our course-by-course comparison chart to determine how the Kaplan GMAT course stacks against the competition.