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3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice

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Joined: 01 Jun 2010
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Schools: Kellogg '14
GMAT 1: 690 Q V
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3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice [#permalink] New post 01 Jun 2010, 06:26
I started my GMAT study journey back in September 2009. I signed up for MGMAT online self study course and took my first GMAT exam in late Dec 2009. After failing to meet my target of high 600s, reaching 700 mark, I took some time off to reassess and reflect and started the preparation again in February 2010. I took my second exam a week ago and devastatingly only went up 20 points since December. I work in consulting and my hours vary, travel demands vary - part of me thinks I just don't study enough, or perhaps not effectively.

Actual GMAT scores:
Dec score: 590 Q36/V34
May score: 610 Q43/V31

My practice scores before my May exam from GMAC were:
GMAC3 710 Q40/V47
GMAC4 710 Q49/V38
GMAC5 720 Q49/V40

Materials covered:
MGMAT SC, all of Quant Strategy Guides
OG 12th Edition (all of Quant & SC)
OG Verbal (only SC)
OG Quant
Grammar Book

I believe my issue is not preparing for CR and RC in verbal but I can't be sure. I have a ~70-80% accuracy during practice exams but perhaps on the real exam I fell short. I can't say for sure since during real GMAT score reporting, there is no breakdown available to confirm or deny this belief. I'd like to take it a 3rd time and hopefully hit my target by end of August as I am interested in applying in 1st rounds (October).

Some options I am considering for this time around preparation:
Study and employ the strategies/methods in MGMAT RC and CR Strategy guides.
Do the RC and CR questions in OG 12th & OG Verbal, not limit doing those problems just during practice tests.
After reviewing all my SC materials and notes, buying PowerScore SC for more practice (~70 accuracy in SC from an initial ~30 accuracy)
Keep up with Quant by reviewing/re-doing problems in OG 12th/Quant, MGMAT Strategy Guides

Perhaps going further...
Should I sign up with a MGMAT Private tutor? I can't meet the individual in person since I am not located in one of branch cities, it would be conducted through webconferencing. Anyone have experiences with private GMAT tutors they can share? Were they effective and worth the money?

Any insight you guys can provide to help me get back on my feet and tackle the GMAT successfully a 3rd time would be greatly appreciated. Verbal is really problematic for me but my Quant didn't quite reach what I expected either. How much time do I still need to spend to get to where I need to be (Is late August a realistic timeline given my circumstance?) Advice, questions for me to think about to further analyze my performance/study methods/weakness + strengths in Quant and Verbal would be GREATLY APPRECIATED!!!
Manhattan GMAT Discount CodesKaplan GMAT Prep Discount CodesVeritas Prep GMAT Discount Codes
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Re: 3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice [#permalink] New post 01 Jun 2010, 08:23
please pick up these books you want regret it:
Powerscore CR
Manhattan RC

spend a couple weeks on those books and you should be fine
Intern
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Joined: 01 Jun 2010
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Re: 3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice [#permalink] New post 01 Jun 2010, 08:27
DAYNE wrote:
please pick up these books you want regret it:
Powerscore CR
Manhattan RC

spend a couple weeks on those books and you should be fine


Do you suggest I only purchase Powerscore CR and not Powerscore SC? I do have the manhattan RC guide. What are your thoughts on the Manhattan CR guide?
Manager
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Re: 3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice [#permalink] New post 01 Jun 2010, 08:38
SW wrote:
DAYNE wrote:
please pick up these books you want regret it:
Powerscore CR
Manhattan RC

spend a couple weeks on those books and you should be fine


Do you suggest I only purchase Powerscore CR and not Powerscore SC? I do have the manhattan RC guide. What are your thoughts on the Manhattan CR guide?


purchase powerscore sc if your foundation in sc is shaky and just go over the foundation portion of the book
since you have Manhattan SC you want to keep reading that

I only have the powerscore CR which alot of people rate higher than Manhattan CR
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Re: 3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice [#permalink] New post 01 Jun 2010, 10:01
Something is definitely not right when even after putting effort you could increase your score that little. You need to gain perspective and try to analyze your entire preparation. Maybe you lack consistency in your preparation, maybe you lack focus and GMAT is not your primary goal (though you might think that it is). Or maybe you just really need more time to build solid foundations so that you can target a higher score.
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Joined: 01 Jun 2010
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Re: 3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice [#permalink] New post 01 Jun 2010, 10:18
nonameee wrote:
Something is definitely not right when even after putting effort you could increase your score that little. You need to gain perspective and try to analyze your entire preparation. Maybe you lack consistency in your preparation, maybe you lack focus and GMAT is not your primary goal (though you might think that it is). Or maybe you just really need more time to build solid foundations so that you can target a higher score.


I should clarify that my efforts from Feb-May were 65% Quant, 35% in SC (no CR, no RC). Quant made significant improvement (34 to 43) however verbal dropped from (34 to 31) and did not increase despite efforts in SC. Thus negating the progress made in Quant and resulting in only a 20 point improvement.
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Re: 3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice [#permalink] New post 01 Jun 2010, 22:21
Well,I think it explains everything. You need a greater commitment to the GMAT and since both parts are at the same level for you, you need to spend equal time on both of them.

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Re: 3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice [#permalink] New post 02 Jun 2010, 01:28
Expert's post
Hm... looks like you can improve both quant and verbal.

You have the right tools and books; you can consider looking into the PowerScore SC or PowerScore CR books but I am not sure they will guarantee the results.
You can try a single session with a tutor to see if they can help you identify weaknesses - probably best use of your time; though this may be the case where everything needs work and help without a single weakness so to speak....
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Re: 3rd Attempt in the Making - Need Feedback/Advice   [#permalink] 02 Jun 2010, 01:28
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