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The 12th Edition: Inside Analysis

Manhattan GMAT has performed an in-depth examination of the 12th Edition. We've matched up the 11th and the 12th editions, classified every problem by topic, run the numbers, and drawn out the insights. Download the OG Problem Lists, which categorize new problems by question type, and read the analysis on this series of pages.


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Official Guide 12th Edition

On March 13, the 12th Edition of the Official Guide for GMAT Review was released. We at Manhattan GMAT have analyzed the book in detail; here are our findings.

Not Radically Different

Only 1/3 of the questions are new. Out of 907 problems, 607 are repeats. The best way to look at the 12th Edition is as a source of 300 great new practice problems.


Much of the book is completely unchanged:

  • Most explanations for repeated problems have been untouched, though some have been improved.
  • The Diagnostic Exam, Math Review, Test-Taking Strategies and Directions are unchanged.
  • Excluding the Diagnostic Exam, sample questions are organized by difficulty, according to the GMAC – just as they are in the 11th edition.

The removed and added problems constitute a slight shift in the relative emphasis of certain topics, but the underlying content is essentially the same as that covered in the 11th Edition.


In fact, of the 300 new problems, some of the new Quant problems can be found in GMATFocus™ (a GMAC product).


It is important to note that you should not over-interpret the changes from the 11th Edition to the 12th Edition! Some variation is to be expected. Nothing in these changes suggests a notable shift in how students should prepare for the exam.

Data Sufficiency Has Grown

The 12th Edition has 19 more Data Sufficiency problems than the 11th Edition. Moreover, 47% of the Data Sufficiency problems in the 12th Edition are new. For other question formats, turnover is in the 22%-36% range.


Overall View of Changes in 12th Edition

In addition, the 12th edition has 19 fewer Problem Solving questions than the 11th Edition. These shifts may suggest an increase in the relative importance of Data Sufficiency, but this is not certain.

Transition If And When You’re Comfortable

If you have been preparing with the 11th Edition, feel free to treat the 12th Edition as a source of additional practice. But you do not need to switch immediately. If your exam is near, you might consider mining the 12th Edition for a few new problems. But your time may be better spent reviewing practice problems you have already encountered, as well as doing online practice with  GMATFocus, or practice exams such as ours.

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