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So yes I have heard consistently that Adcoms "only consider your best score." On this topic however, I have a couple questions:
1. Do you think having a score report with 4 attempts diminishes the value of a good score (let's say 720). I took the test in 2008 about 4 years ago and scored a 620, took it in December with a 640, and today with a 680. I will be retaking as my targets are top schools. While the 620 is on my record, it was to get into a MS Accounting program. That being the case, despite that it is on my record, I don't really feel like it's an attempt - I don't feel crazy for wanting to try a fourth time b/c for my MBA pursuits (started studying in Sept 2011), I have tried twice now.
Is it nuts that I want to try a fourth time (feels like my third)
2. As far as "considering the applicant's best score only", do you all really believe that is true? When an adcom member sits down to review and application, do you think that they really don't notice multiple low/weak scores? Does that really not impact there judgement at all? If I personally had two extremely similar candidates and was looking for a way to pick between them, i'd be looking for anything differentiating factor. I'm probably being extremely negative, but really just wondering what people think. How true is this and is it true for every school?
My GMAT scores today was a 680 (q42 v41) - just completely folded in the quant. scored a 47 and 45 on my last two practices in quant. My goal is a 720 so I'm asking these questions to determine what my score report is going to look like to the adcoms littered with numbers from different years.
1) Not all schools only consider your highest score. So I would look at each of your school's individually. 2) The older the score the less weight it carries. Especially the 2008 score 3) Multiple scores can be looked at negatively, but ultimately, taking the test 4 times with a 720 as your last score is better than taking it 3 times with a 680 as your end score. So if you can pull out the score you are hoping for, a retake can be done. But Adcoms will wonder slightly why you were unable to achieve your 720 the first time you took the test. It can potentially show poor planning. Anything over 2 takes can show that you might be "fishing" for a high score since it is possible to have a great day and score 30 points above your potential since the test is only accurate to about plus or minus 20-30 points of your true average score. But if you are able to accomplish a true upward trend, with your last score being a 720, then it shows that you actually improved. So this isn't as bad as a 620, 680, 650, 710. 4) Since you are targeting top schools you are going to have to retake the test anyways. Although a 680 is a solid score, your score is very unbalanced, and with a low quant your 680 isn't as strong as a 680 with a strong quant and weaker verbal. Your goal should be to get that Q up to a 47+ and keep that V41, then you should hit your goal. So concentrate your studying on your quant, and stay fresh in verbal.
Thanks friends for the encouragement. Was a real beat-down to get that quant score after doing much better on the practices. I was right there!!
I won't quit though and after reading your posts I did a little searching and it made me feel a little bit better to see that all the schools I am targeting only consider your top score. Some of them even only ask you to input your top score. U Chicago did say it discourages students from taking more than 3 times, but again, I don't really consider that 2008 take part of my attempts. I think that will be clear and even with what I read on the Booth website, it looks like they consider the top score.
I am not sure about U chicago but I heard in general they don't care how many times you take it. My tutor tutored a guy who took it 7 times until he got the 700- He's in Harvard now and the guy who took it said the committee didn't seem to care at all- it wasnt an issue. Unlike law school, business schools wants leaders and people who are going to actually do something. They want the numbers for their stats and to see you'll succeed in the workload but I don't think they care whether you take it once or four times.... Law school is all numbers... You can play warcraft all day and not have a job, if you have a 4.0 and a 175, hello harvard law... mba, have a 4.0 and 750 you play warcraft all day good luck getting into a top 20...