I’ve talked to a ton of students recently who were surprised by some detail of test day”and that detail affected their performance. In most of these cases, the surprising detail was actually exactly what should have happened, according to the official rules. So let’s talk about what’s going to happen when you finally get in there to take the test.
When you arrive
There will be some kind of outer waiting area, followed by an inner office containing the biometric equipment and finally the inner sanctum: the testing room.
When you first arrive, you’ll be asked to read (and digitally sign) a bunch of legalese. Basically, you’ll promise not to share anything that you see with anyone else and you affirm that you’re only taking the test for the purposes of applying to business school. You have to sign this document or you won’t be allowed to take the test.
You’ll also be asked for your ID. Check the guidelines to determine what kind of ID you must bring. Further, when you’re registering for the test, make sure that the name and birthdate you enter into the registration system match exactly what’s written on the piece of ID you’ll use to enter the test center.
But wait! You’re not done with security yet. They’ll take a digital photo of you. You’ll also have the veins in your palm digitally scanned”turns out our palm veins are even more unique than fingerprints. Who knew?
Finally, before you enter the inner sanctum, you’ll be asked to place all of your belongings (except for your ID) into a locker to which you will have the key. Everything goes in this locker: your wallet or purse, your money, your mobile phone, your keys, everything. Do not bring any study notes into the test center with you; your test will be cancelled immediately even if you simply leave these in your locker! Don’t use any electronic devices at any time”not your phone, not your iPod, nothing. Do not write anything down during the breaks, even if you’re just writing down your grocery list. Don’t give them any reason to think that you might be cheating.