I am glad that the GMAT is finally done!
Math 49 - 90
Verbal 38- 85
Overall 710 - 94
I studied for about 3 months, 1.5 hr on weekdays and 3-4 hours on weekends. I started by taking Gmatprep exam 1 (BAD IDEA because I wasted 1 authentic test) to get a feel of where I stood. Scored 500 on the first exam. Based on past experience and the 1st exam, I knew that verbal was going to be my sore point. I got the OG for verbal, OG 11th edition, PR cracking GMAT
. Studied OG verbal
-> PR -> OG 11th edition in that order. This took me around 2 months. I did not find the PR book that great, but the OG 11th edition is a lifeline. The actual questions on the test were very close to what you will find in the OG. At this point I gave the PR 1 and 2 (online tests) that came with the book (scores 570 and 650). I got the 1st question for quant wrong (silly mistake) on the 1st test and that screwed my score (that proved as an excellent eye opener).
Later I went back to the 3 books and concentrated on the questions that I got wrong in the 3 books. This I think helped me a lot. It gave me a better idea of which areas I could work on for the rest of the month. SC in verbal and to a lesser extent DS in quant were the 2 areas for me. At this point I turned to the GMATClub forums and started solving the forum questions. The key point that helped me was that when solving these questions I solved them as if they appeared in the actual exam, for every question, < 2.5 mins/question and then make an educated guess. Later followed up the discussion related to the question.
At the start of the last weeks I gave the 2nd GMAT prep (710, with some repeatition from the OG) and Kaplan
online (710 again, however I thought the Quant section was very easy as compared to actual GMAT). Continued with GMATClub excercies. In the last 2 weeks I gave the Kaplan
CD tests (590, 570, 560 in that order). The Kaplan
tests were a disaster and I will highly recommend that you do not try these before the actual tests. I think their scoring is screwed and make sure you do not base your actual test strategy on these tests (PR and GMATPrep tests
are the best). They are ok for setting up your timings. I also tried the GMATPrep tests
again to get a feel for the actual tests.
The actual test was deceptive. I got relatively easy questions in quant at the question 20-25 mark. For the entire length of the verbal section, I had no clue on how the section was going.
To sum up,
1. Have a good strategy for the actual exam. DO NOT waste more than 3 mins on any 1 question. Learn the technique of educated guessing. Complete all the questions in both the sections.
2. Use the GMATPrep tests
wisely (I did not). The questions are repeated from the OG. The scores on the GMATPrep test scores are very close to the actuals score on the test.
3. DO NOT trust the Kaplan
CD tests either for level of difficulty or defining strategy. They are good for setting up your timings e.g. first 10 in 25 mins, next 10 min 20 mins etc.
4. The GMATClub is GOLD and there are very smart people on the forums. Trust them to give sound advice and help in resolving any queries. Also posts related to strategies, reviews are very very helpful.
Finally, thanks again for everyone on this club.