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460>480>510>540>600>550

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460>480>510>540>600>550 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2009, 05:35
Hi!
I just took the GMAT test and scored a disappointing 550.

But, before I go any further, allow me to introduce myself: Non native English speaker (clearly!), US college grad(3.6/4.0), fine arts background, 10 years out of school, second year GMAT student, avid runner.

I have been following this forum for a month now and it’s truly been a goldmine!
Thank you for all the wonderful resources and advices.

OK, so like I said, my score was 550.
But, what is more tragic than the actual score is the fact that this was my sixth GMAT attempt!!
460(Q28 V25) > 480 (Q31 V25) > 510 (Q32 V27)> 540 (Q32 V33)> 600 (Q42 V31). > 550(Q39 V27).
Most of you are probably shaking your heads and wondering how in the world I could allow myself to step into the GMAT testing room so unprepared. Believe me when I say that I’d put serious hours behind each of the tests and felt ready each time.
But, I have finally exhausted all my self-confidence (and self-respect)…and am here for some serious advice.

Now, some of you may (correctly) advice me that I need to brush up on the fundamentals and then practice using the OG books. In fact, I would give the same advice if it wasn’t me asking. However, in an attempt to solidify by fundamentals, I have not only attended two full GMAT courses but also have studied diligently some of the essential materials listed on the resources section here: MGMAT SC, KAPLAN Premier Program, KAPLAN800, PowerScore CR bible, GMAT Math bible by Jeff Sackmann, PR Cracking the GMAT, All 10 EZ solution quant books, Project GMAT…some Arco stuff… (it seems like a lot, but I have been studying for this cursed test now for two whole years!!)
I have also timed and solved the OG 11 over 8 times. Quant and Verbal review books, each over four times.
Nothing seems to be working…

Here are my four deadly problems:
1. Lack of self evaluation skills.
I am certain that there are some fundamental concepts that I do not truly comprehend but that I had convinced myself that I do. I need a diagnostic tool that would stick those concepts in front of my nose for me to see.
2. Lack of application skills.
By solving OG11 so many times, I have literarily “conditioned” myself to react to certain problems in a certain way. Since I find the questions on the real GMAT quite different from those on the OG series, or from those on the GMAT Prep (specially, Math), I panic when I see something unfamiliar. I need to find a way to prepare myself to face any type of question undaunted.
3. Lack of time-management skill.
Undoubtedly, my biggest problem. I rarely finish a test on time. In fact, I end-up guessing about seven to ten questions at the end of each test. I’ve read the thread on time management, but find it difficult to track time when I am concentrating.
4. Lack of a strategic plan of attack.
Each time I flank the GMAT, I take two to three weeks to review the fundamentals. Then, I force myself to solveOG11 cover to cover at least once. At this point, I take the GMAT prep to assess where I am. Often, I feel confident enough to divert my time to more difficult questions such as the ones in the GmatClub tests. I repeat this study pattern despite the fact that it has brought little RIO.

Perhaps, I am missing something big and obvious that everybody else does correctly….
Or perhaps I am just plain stupid and helpless :oops: .
But, I have a dream beyond MBA that I am not willing to give up just yet.

I will be grateful someone suggest/recommend helpful ideas.

A 700+ score can be achieved. I just need to find traction.
Sorry for the long post and thanks for reading this far.

U.
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Re: 460>480>510>540>600>550 [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2009, 12:27
Quote:
Here are my four deadly problems:
1. Lack of self evaluation skills.
You (or someone who is directly coaching you) need to come up with an action plan. Unless you're a relatively high performer to begin with, aimlessly studying will not get you anywhere.

2. Lack of application skills.
This is true with any preparation. If you keep going through the same material w/o changing the approach, it WILL become routine and you will not benefit. Without proper self eval, you can't do much here.

3. Lack of time-management skill.
This is hands down the most important thing to manage on the exam. Time management can make or break anyone.
4. Lack of a strategic plan of attack.
This goes hand in hand with one and two. One you figure out the "why" part of why you're doing bad, then you can address the "how". You obviously have an overall problem approach issue. Once you resolve that, you can hone in on content, strategies and timing. Proper approach is the key.


See comments above.

Post your overall score/break down from practice exams if you want more targeted responses.
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Re: 460>480>510>540>600>550 [#permalink] New post 22 Jul 2009, 00:16
mohater, thank you for the quick feedback :-D !
You are dead on with your comments.
I clearly need is an objective evaluation and a study plan that derives from the analysis of it.
What is troubling, though, is that I live in a country where there are not many GMAT consultants...or for that matter, fellow GMAT students.
My only GMAT comrades are those in this board...like you :-D .

Fortunately, I am also finding that there are online courses, such as Knewton, that I may be able to become part of.
They have late evening courses (morning in my country) and I like the sound of their technology that, supposedly, is set up to exposes one's weaknesses.
Hopefully they will also offer comprehensive consultation or a study plan.

Beneath is a list of the practice exams I took prior to this test:
GMAT Club tests: M1,2,3 << I never finish these on time. My percentile is below 40 :( .
Gmat Prep 1 (2nd time): 650 (V40 Q39)
Gmat Prep 1 (3rd time): Math only (Q45)
Gmat Prep 1 (4th time): Math only (Q48)
Gmat Prep 2 (1st time): 640 (V35 Q43)
MGMAT CAT(1st time): 550 (V29 Q37)

Looking at the MGMAT score, I've just realised that it is almost identical to my actual test performance!
This is good to know!
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Posts: 1860
Location: United States
Concentration: Healthcare, Economics
Schools: Ross '14 (M)
GMAT 1: 710 Q48 V38
GMAT 2: Q V
GPA: 3.54
WE: Accounting (Manufacturing)
Followers: 54

Kudos [?]: 398 [0], given: 234

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Re: 460>480>510>540>600>550 [#permalink] New post 22 Jul 2009, 05:45
By redoing GMATprep, you *can* overlap questions from GMAC's provided question bank.

That being said, my score between GMATprep and MGMAT practice exam were nearly identical.

Look at the breakdown on the MGMAT practice on both verbal and quant. What type of problems are you getting wrong? How long are you spending per problem?

On Verbal:
SC
RC
CR

On Quant:
Number properties
Geometry
Variables in solution
Word translation
etc.

Once you figure that out you can come up with a plan and study. Make sure you go through other posts here as it's likely other people are/were experiencing the same problems, and some have posted what worked for them.

Remember, there is no secret or magic here. You need figure out HOW to study, and then give studying its due time. You need to have a solid grounding in the material, and then supplement this material with strategies that will help you get through the test in the allotted time.
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Re: 460>480>510>540>600>550   [#permalink] 22 Jul 2009, 05:45
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