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450 and no improvements. Goal of 600+ [Pls share experience]

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450 and no improvements. Goal of 600+ [Pls share experience] [#permalink] New post 11 Oct 2011, 23:24
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Hi All,

I have been on the forum the past months but this is my first post. Just a brief background. I am from Canada but living and working in Hong Kong now. I in my mid 20s, with 3-4 yrs working experience. In Canada, we don't have

Took th 1st gmat exam last year in Nov 2010 thru self study. Took 2 weeks off from work, only studied hardcore for 1 week by using the OG and got a 450. Didnt know about this forum.

Need a min. of 600 to get into the school I want to pursue.

Not giving up. This year, I signed up for the exam again and develped a 3 month study plan to improve this score. Exam scheduled on 4 Nov 2011.

Began studying in July, I followed the advices of study plans and took a practie exam on GMATPrep software in the first week and got a 420 (1 yr of no touching gmat). Ok fair enough.

Then I spent about 2 months (July to August) using a fd's kaplan guide, and retook the GmatPrep in Sept and got a 390!! My jaws dropped, after 2 months of study I did worst than not studying! I admit I was v tired that day but did not imagine this bad. I am bad on timing, i missed almost 8-9 quant questions in the end. There was a big diff between my Quant and Verbal. My Quant (20s) was way below my Verbal (40s).

So I kept on studying in Sept with Kaplan guide and OG, and reviewed the GMAT Club flash cards. Took another practice test with good rest last weekend and got a 420 to gauge rest. This time, I finished all the Quant and Verbal. Results were opposite Quant (40s) was much higher than verbal (20ish). I don't have the actuals with me at the moment.

I work full time from 9am to 8pm, only have 1-2 hrs each weekday to study and weekends. I plan to again use my work holidays this year (blow my 2 weeks ) to retake the exam.

I started using an error log to see my weakness, seems I am struggling with time, data sufficiency and others. And with less then 4 weeks away, at this moment I am not confortable with my score and feel a need to delay the exam to Dec. My weakness seems evident, I can solve problems if it was 4-5mins, but in 2 mins I can only do problems I know by heart ie easier questions. I learned new strategies which helps but I am thinking ways to move up the 450 range by taking a course ie online course such as MasterGmat b/c of its adaptive and weakness tracking tool and the overall course program.

Can someone pls give me insights on what I can do? Sorry for the long story!!
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Re: 450 and no improvements. Goal of 600+ [Pls share experience] [#permalink] New post 13 Oct 2011, 01:33
Hi can anyone pls offer some insights? I have been doing a lot of reading on the forum and reading ppl's stories for motivation. Now is at a pt where unsure how to pursue... so many different stories and different paths and different study plans
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Re: 450 and no improvements. Goal of 600+ [Pls share experience] [#permalink] New post 14 Oct 2011, 07:50
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burnjai,

sorry to hear about that.

As a fulltime professional, it's understandable that you really don't have much free time to prepare besides your non-existent nights and spare weekends.

If you're in the 400 range - don't worry about identifying weaknesses. To be blunt, you'll likely need to improve in all question types. So it's more about changing how you think. There's a fundamental flaw in the way you approach questions that is likely leading you to fall for the many booby traps of the exam. You don't need a fancy technology software to point that out.

Have someone (a friend if you can) show you where those booby traps are. Once you "see" how a successful GMAT guy sees things it very well could be a "lightbulb" moment where if someone pointed it out to you, you'll look at the question in a totally different way.

We've had many students in your shoes - busy working professional struggling in the 400s. Take a look at these online videos and see if they're helpful for you. Only you can judge what is helpful for you and what is not.

http://www.gmatpill.com/admissionsconsu ... ample.html
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Re: 450 and no improvements. Goal of 600+ [Pls share experience] [#permalink] New post 14 Oct 2011, 18:54
I think it's a good sign that you're scoring 40++ on both the Q and the V sections, albeit on different practice tests. Perhaps your lower-than-expected overall score is due somewhat to fatigue and/or lack of confidence?

You should definitely study as much as you can before test day, but I think it's critical go into the test well-rested and confident. Good luck!
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Re: 450 and no improvements. Goal of 600+ [Pls share experience] [#permalink] New post 14 Oct 2011, 23:49
thanks both, i think it is because i am not used to standardized tests, as well as lack of efficient studying. having to work full time and sometimes on the weekends, it is hard for the mind to be thinking about work and gmat at the same time, so the time is spent but not 100% is remembered, thus less than 50% can be applied
Re: 450 and no improvements. Goal of 600+ [Pls share experience]   [#permalink] 14 Oct 2011, 23:49
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