Kaplan: GMAT score dips: Hitting a bump on Preparation Rd

By - Jan 17, 08:00 AM Comments [0]

BY LUCAS WEINGARTEN

So how are you supposed to interpret a drop in scores?

Clearly, you should walk in front of a bus. Either that, or call mom and tell her to get your room ready ‘cause you’re moving back in. Seriously, though, being disappointed when your score remains stagnant or declines is both understandable and acceptable. However, it is neither the end of the world nor a sure sign of test day doom. Rather, this is a very normal event on Preparation Rd and one that should be viewed as an opportunity.

As you learn to think in ways the GMAT rewards, you will approach problems and questions in ways you aren’t used to. You will look at information from a new vantage point and interpret the details as well as the big picture differently. As you develop these new thought processes and hone your budding GMAT skills, practice test performance will swing around somewhat. So, instead of self-loathing in the event of a dip, look at it objectively.

I always ask my students to do a quick “journal entry” after they complete a test. How did you feel before you began? How did you feel during? Thoughts on time management? Were there any types of questions that seemed to be either trouble spots or strong points? Overall, how was the Verbal section? Quant? The essays? Did you expect the score you received? Why? Why not?

Then, after they review the test, they can finish out the assessment with specific information and compare it to their “gut feelings.” Watching how intuition matches up with reality can be very illuminating and quite humbling.

The point of it all is to learn. Learning is the most important thing you can do for yourself. Figure out why your score went up, stayed the same, or went down. If you don’t learn why it happened, then you are missing the purpose of practice.

~Article provided by the courtesy of Kaplan GMAT

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