19Sept - 680 (Q48, V35) : Share GMAT Experience
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# 19Sept - 680 (Q48, V35)

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Intern
Joined: 14 Aug 2003
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Location: Chicago
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19Sept - 680 (Q48, V35) [#permalink]

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19 Sep 2003, 18:31
Hi All,

I thought I will share my test experience with you all. I took the test today and got 680 - Math 48, Verbal 35. I was aiming for 650, so I am very satisfied.

First the questions where of difficulty level similar to the one's in all the paper tests and OG. So OG, GMAT Plus, VStudy and ETS papers come very close to the actual test questions. Princeton Review material is the next closest thing to the actual test. Kaplan questions are too tough and far beyond the actual difficultly level seen on the real test. So I personally would recommend not paying too much attention to Kaplan tests or questions. They are in a way very misleading and at times very discouraging. Probably the folks who got over 725 on the real test might disagree but I highly doubt it.

I took lot of paper tests as part of my preparation and was getting scores in the range of 630-700. On Kaplan tests I got 540,540 and 560.On PR I got 700,680,630 and 600. Since my scores where going in the wrong direction as the test day approached I was very nervous at the time of actual test.

AWA section helped me get used to the center environment. I was very nervous when I went in as I really did not wanted to repeat the test at any cost. So the one hour of essay writing actually help me calm down rather than stress me out. I would highly recommend folks take the practice test following the actually timing constraints. Writing those essays for an hour can drain some people causing to lose concentration or get fatigue during math or verbal section. Practice, Practice and Practice!! But do not get burned out either.

My first math question was very easy. I wish I could disclose some actual test questions to you all but since its illegal I am avoiding the temptation. It was simple multiplication question. Second was a bit difficult compared to the first one but nothing anybody from this group canтАЩt handle. Got a simple probability question on 4 and 8th. But no permutation or combination questions for me. I could not answer two questions (15th and 28th) and was forced to guess. For the rest I at least knew what I was doing. But around 10th question I started seeing some very simple questions, so got nervous thinking I probably screwed up on difficult questions early on and was doomed to get a low score.
Question remained of the same difficulty from there on and no surprises. So if you see questions that are much lower difficultly than you where expecting, do not panic. Actually questions in the test are of lower difficulty than the practice test questions.

One of the probability question asked for the chances of one thing occurring at least once. There was also a DS question on Standard Deviation (question number 35 or 36). No calculation was required to answer the question, just understanding of how mean plays a role in determining the SD. Since I got that one so late in the exam I guessed it must have been experimental. One DS on coordinate geometry which gave the line equation but not the y-intercept in the question stem. One tricky geometry question which asked for the perimeter of the Triangle which had two other triangles embedded inside it. Looked complicated but paying little attention I saw all the information was there. It was only matter of visualizing and translating the given information. Similar questions are there in OG and PP tests. So what you see in the OG review is all the math you need to know if you ask me. Do not stress out solving questions from Schaum series etc.

In verbal first 3 questions where SC. Next two CR. Followed by a almost 100 lines long RC. I got 4 RC questions (as expected) but two of them where around 95 lines long. Both the long RCs had 4 question each and smaller ones had 3 each. First RC was real tough. One of those where you have to re-read them to understand what they are talking about. So the first RC reminded me of RCs from Kaplan question bank. Rest where of the difficultly levels found in the OG. CR was of OG or PR level, so was SC. I had one bold CR, an example of the same is the last question in OG. Verbal was my weak point so I made sure I devote a lot of time to first few questions. My goal was to get to 30 questions and guess the rest if I had to. But in the actual test I just guessed the last RCтАЩs 3 questions and finished on time.

So in summary, for what ever its worth, OG is the bible. PP tests are best source for practice. PR is next best thing to get a feel of CAT side of the GMAT. Forget Kaplan, unless you have time. I personally now think that we over do it in the preparation phase by using material that mislead the actually difficulty of the test like Kaplan and over prepare for the exam.

Finally thanks to everybody who posted questions on this forum. I was a silent participant so far but decided to pay my dues by writing my experience. Hope this information, thought nothing new, is helpful to somebody. Goooooooood LUCK!! Remember its easier than you think.
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Joined: 13 Aug 2003
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Well done and thanks for writing ur experince! [#permalink]

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20 Sep 2003, 05:26
Congrats mate for that score and writing at length the details about the test. they surely will help ppl getting a better picture of what they can expect on the big one... The bottomline... stick to the basics and dont try top spend too much time on things like combinations and permutations... Play with ur strngths . They would invariable sail; u thru guys!

cheers
neeraj
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26 Sep 2003, 20:57
my experience today was pretty similar to that of yours. And hey! we both scored 120 points higher on the actual test than on the kaplan.
(I got 570 on my kaplan and 690 on the real one today)

I got the same standard deviation problem as you did too!
Is it because our cities are not too far apart therefore the exams are similar in some way ?
26 Sep 2003, 20:57
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