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700 (unofficial), and how I got there

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700 (unofficial), and how I got there [#permalink] New post 12 Nov 2012, 09:42
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Perhaps it's too early to post this since I haven't received my official score yet, but what the heck...

Two saturdays ago I was scheduled for my GMAT exam at 8:00 a.m. I had been thinking of doing the GMAT and applying to B-schools since early summer, and I had acquired the GMAT material since then, but I only got serious about it a month prior to the exam.

So how did I do it? The only thing I studied were the 8 Manhattan GMAT guides, and that's it. Nothing else. Occasionally I did some CR questions on this forum, but that's about it. I usually get obsessed with plans and structures and how everyone else is doing it, but this time I told myself to stay away from GMAT forums on purpose for fear of getting confused and lost. The only advices I picked from this website was to do a gmat prep exam before studying the material and to not waste the rest of the official prep exams until I'm done with my studies.

Manhattan's quant books, I thought, were amazing. I was less impressed with the three verbal books. In fact, the last Manhattan guide, Sentence Correction, was probably a valuable source, but it was just a 200-page book full of grammatical rules that had to be memorized. I actually almost entirely skipped studying and practicing sentence correction because it would've taken too much time. Critical reasoning was not that bad and I found it helpful, but Manhattan's reading comprehension was not that great (in my humble opinion). It had helpful tips and strategies, of course, but I thought it was geared towards people who have a lot of trouble with RC and their strategies (of writing down notes) took too much time.

On my very first prep exam, taken in June, I scored 570. After I went through the Manhattan guides, I scored 610, 730, 710, 690. One problem I had with all my prep exams is that I always ran out of time in the quant section, and that's because I generally have a hard time moving on from a question which is taking too long. I always feel if I think I can do the question, then I'm not going to give up, even if that means spending 5 minutes on it. So without exception, the quant section always ended with me having to rush through the last 10-15 questions in 60-90 seconds, and every single time I left 2-5 questions unanswered.

The day before my exam I stopped studying at 2pm. I cooked, hit the gym, watched some news, relaxed, and prepared to go to bed 8 hours before I had to wake up. Plenty of time. But even though I thought I'm not that nervous, my body/mind felt different about it. The whole night I was up with random thoughts rushing through and out of my head at such speed that I wasn't even sure what the hell I was thinking about. I managed to sleep for about 45 minutes out of the 8 hours, and with each passing hour that I stayed up I got more and more nervous as I knew a good night's sleep would be essential to doing well on the exam.

Anyways, 6:30am finally came by and I got out of bed feeling defeated. I was at the exam center half an hour before my exam time, 7:30. I'm not sure how I did on the IR section... not too well, I'm guessing. I'm sure I did fine on the AWA. Quant? Same problem as before. I got stuck on a few questions and had to rush through the last 10, and I left one or two questions unanswered. I know--bad. Verbal I finished just on time. The result? 44 on quant, 41 on verbal, and a total of 700. I'm sure if I wasn't such an arrogant idiot and finished the quant on time I would've scored even higher. Needless to say, coming to the exam with only 45-minutes of sleep didn't help either.

I was thinking of doing the exam again, but I've talked to a few schools and all of them have told me not to bother. So I guess that's it for me. Now to figure out how to apply to B-schools :)
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Re: 700 (unofficial), and how I got there [#permalink] New post 15 Nov 2012, 14:32
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Lol, I don't think that you're at any risk of being a pompous jack*** just because you wanted something higher than a 700! Of course, plenty of people would give their left testicle for that 700... and seriously, you should be proud of that score, especially if your target schools are happy with it. But there's nothing wrong with being a little bit extra ambitious.

And don't worry about the IR at all if you're applying this year. The section is too new, and it isn't fair for schools to use it as a basis for comparison when a huge percentage of the applicant pool hasn't taken the IR section at all. There's almost zero chance that IR will do any damage to your application. So go celebrate, and then go write some amazing essays. :-D
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Re: 700 (unofficial), and how I got there [#permalink] New post 15 Nov 2012, 14:15
Congratulations on the excellent score, sepandee! Welcome to the 700 Club!
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Re: 700 (unofficial), and how I got there [#permalink] New post 15 Nov 2012, 14:27
GMATNinja wrote:
Congratulations on the excellent score, sepandee! Welcome to the 700 Club!

Thanks. To be honest (and risking looking like a pompous jacka**, I was a little disappointed with the 700 score. I knew I wanted to score above 700, and I got the minimum of my acceptable range. I wasn't even sure if 700 is a good score. But I've talked toa few b-schools and they all say 700 is great. So I suppose that's the end of my GMAT story (unless I did awful on the IR section, in which case I have to figure out how it will affect my application).
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Re: 700 (unofficial), and how I got there [#permalink] New post 16 Nov 2012, 04:46
Congratulations for the good score!
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Re: 700 (unofficial), and how I got there   [#permalink] 16 Nov 2012, 04:46
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