Well I'm back. I'm a little disappointed with my quant score, since I believed I should've scored higher.
I arrived at the test center a half hour early for my 8:00AM test. The air smelled smoky and was a little brown (i'm in socal and there's fires going on here). I was #12 in line. Finally got to my station and once seated I took some time to get settled in my chair. Made sure my arm rests were comfortable, seat height was correct, etc. Once I was comfortable, I picked my schools and then proceeded with the test.
First question was about West Cambria volunteer ambulance squad and how they have longer response times than East Cambria Commercial ambulance. And that how they should disband the west cambria service due to the longer avg response times which will then improve accident victim care and increase revenues for the city. I pointed out that there could be differences in the sizes of both east and west cambria, and addressed something about "victim care".
Second question was a statement that a specified amount of "public service" which I interpreted as "community service" should be mandatory for all citizens because it will help all individuals and improve the country as a whole. I disagreed and made up some examples of a complete stranger going out of the way to open a door for another person or a doorman whose job is to go out of the way to open doors for people. And stressed how once something is forced it loses its good natured value. Also mentioned something about people who take advantage of the welfare system that have no motivation to improve (thus would not help country as a whole).
I consider myself a quick typer (+100wpm) so i just brainstormed everything onto the screen. Then made a template and built them up as necessary. I kinda panicked when a few seconds before my time was up on the issue essay, I remembered that I had forgotten to erase all the notes I had put at the very top of the essay. When I did, I realized I was missing my intro paragraph! Luckily there was an undo button so I breathed a sigh of relief.
After the essays I took a quick break, ate some pretzels I had brought, drank some water, stretched... Onto the math..
Oh, before the math, I created a little time-chart thingy on the side of my board, so I could keep track of where I should be at a given problem. I would reference this every few questions. At times I was behind the avg about 4-5 minutes. But I never went further than that.
My chart was something as follows.
ques min left
Anyways, if you want to do something similar, just start with the right column counting down every ten min (75, 65, 55, etc) then match that with the left column, starting with (1, 5, 10, 15 ,etc)
So that's what I did. What I remember was that it kept asking me a lot of avgs questions. A lot of DS questions that gave you an avg and then asked you to find the median. So it wasn't straightforward avgs, so I had a little tough time with them.
I mentioned in my earlier post that I am taking a calculus class right now. What came in handy was the first week of that course we just did factoring polynomials. I had a lot of practice with those. So it helped me out a lot during the test. There was also several geometry questions, one where knowing the 3:4:5 triples came in handy. Although it was x:120:150. Also there was a trick work formula question. It would start with the typical machine x rate and machine y rate, then if combined rates, what portion of the combined rate is machine y's, so you'd have to mult y's independent rate to the total rate in order to get the answer.
I had to be careful to reread the question before answering. It really helped me out a lot. Towards the end I was starting to run out of time, I had to guess on the last two or three, which sucked because I could've finished them if i had more time.
Took my break, ate a granola bar, went to the bathroom, took 8 min out of my 10 min break. Went back and sat down and stretched during the 30 sec it gave the verbal instructions. I basically knew the manhattan SC
and CR's powerscore bible books like the back of my hand since I've read them over and over, so maybe those came into play. A lot of the SC questions were TOUGH, especially at the end though. I don't remember TOO much on these except that one SC question was pretty current. It was about Antonia Villagarosa, who is the current mayor of Los Angeles.
For RC there was a passage about CO2 and some forest, another about African-American industrialization in the early 1900's, another on latin american writers/poets, and I don't quite remember the last one.
CR wasn't too difficult, maybe it was everything I had learned with the powerscore bible that helped me out. That's basically the only difference between my last GMAT and this one. I didn't have too difficult ones though, like no boldface.
For prep i started in March. My foundation in math is VERY POOR! I wish it wasn't but I have bad fundamentals. I started around March by going to the library and checking out a...(gulp) arithmetic book. Yes I started with the basics and built myself up. But first in order to do that I had to admit that I was bad. Once I felt comfortable with that book, I checked out a college algebra book. At the same time i signed up with Kaplan
that started in May. COMPLETE waste of money, I attended the class thinking it would be my math refresher, but it wasn't. If I could do it all over again I would've signed up for a math class, and save the extra money.
About the same time I started kaplan
, I discovered about the OG 11th edition books. Got the OG, Math, Verbal books. Then I found out through this great site about the Manhattan SC
. When I started reading that book, that's when I started to realize that something was kind of wrong with Kaplan
. I also got Manhattan Word Translations
- HELPED ME OUT A TON!! Work/Distance problems are so fun to do. So are translating word problems into algebra. I also got the Manhattan Number Properties
book, where I learned how to add consecutive evens, learned about odds/evens, pos/neg., exponents/roots, etc. All these books were crucial to my performance on the test.
As far as verbal, I just used OG Verbal
, CR Powerscore Bible
, and Manhattan SC
. I just learned the rules until they were ingrained into my brain. I'd always correct my gf whether it be reasoning/logic or sentence structure in order to teach myself outloud, but I bet it annoyed the hell out of her!
Well thankfully it's over now. I feel like I've typed way too much so I'm gonna stop now.
Oh my previous test scores (sorry dont remember q or v's):
Diagnostic 470 05/01/07
MGMAT 1 580 Q37, V42 7/4/07
MGMAT 2 580 Q36, V33 7/7/07
MGMAT 3 660 Q43, V37 7/13/07
MGMAT 4 500 Q27, V32 7/15/07 (had a tall glass of hefe during this one!)
GMAT #1 550 Q35, V31 07/30/07
MGMAT 5 540 Q29, V36 9/30/07
GMATPrep 1 550 Q32, V34 10/14/07
GMATPrep 2 580 Q36, V34 10/19/07
GMAT #2 610 Q35, V39 10-22-07
there's a few other kaplan
tests in the beginning but I dont remember them as I dont have access to the tests anymore.