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730/97%(Q50,V38) on 9/3

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730/97%(Q50,V38) on 9/3 [#permalink] New post 04 Sep 2003, 07:31
I just took the GMAT on 9/3. First, I would like to thank those that have taken the time to post their questions/experiences here and administrators of this website. It has been very helpful to me in preparing for the test. I haven't posted before, but want to share my experience.

Quant - I really thought this section was pretty straightforward. I didn't run into any early really difficult questions like some people on this site have asked about. I had 1 probability and 1 combination question - neither of which was that difficult. There weren't really any new types of questions that I didn't run into in the OG, although one question had a ridiculous amount of information before all the information that was truly necessary to work the problem. I started writing it all down, then thought to myself I should read the rest of the question. I read it, and it probably took me a couple of minutes to figure out that I didn't need all the junk info at the beginning of the question. I did see my toughest questions in the middle of the test, and was somewhat behind on time at that point, but the easy ones made up for it and i caught back up with no problem. I did see a problem towards the end that was directly from the OG(sure helps with the time crunch!)

Verbal - This section was tougher than I had expected. I had hoped to do better - in the practice tests I had scored in the low 40's. I did see a new question type - where there were 2-3 sentences, then a part of a sentence, and you have to choose what response logically completes the last sentence. I don't know if they were experimental or not though. My first 2 reading comp. passages were fine, but the last one, at almost the end of the test, was 80 lines - which was pretty tough. Other than that, everything here was pretty straightforward. Personally, I felt that the logic and sentence corrections were tougher than in the OG. Usually, in the OG, I could get it down to 2 questions, and then would find an obvious difference that made the correct answer stand out. On the test, I could get it down to two choices, but the obvious one rarely stood out to me.

My Preparation - I have actually taken the GMAT before - a year ago I scored a 640. That score was not good enough for what I wanted to do, so I basically studied from early July. I did take a class given by Veritas Test Prep - I did like their coursework (most of which is taken from the OG), but I would also add that I really think the biggest value add in a class is the instructor. My instructor was very good - especially in the areas I was weakest (SC). I was also fortunate to have an advanced class - in that we didn't have to spend much time learning how to factor, etc but could spend a lot more time working problems, and learning how to approach some of the tougher problems.

I did buy PR, Kaplan, and used the CAT tests provided with my class (they gave us the ARCO disks and the PP tests), and also bought the tests available from ETS. I do believe the just released tests do include problems that are not in the OG.
Here is how my practice tests went:
PR - 710, 710, 630(i was having a bad day!)
Kap - 570, 620
ARCO - 2 tests, both predicted scores in high 600's
PP - 690, 750
ETS tests (I don't remember the numbers, and I didn't take them all) - 770, 770, 750(I had seen no previous questions on this one)

As most others have said, the OG is the bible. If you know all of this, there are only so many new things they can introduce to the test in a short period of time, so know this material in your sleep. If you need to learn how to do basic algebra and geometry, Kaplan is probably the best, then move to the OG - I found some of the OG explanations would skip several steps of sometimes complex algebraic manipulation in its explanations of the tougher questions.

On SC (which I was having trouble with) - what i did initially was, while working problems in the OG, to write down why each answer choice was incorrect, and this narrowed it down for me. Then, I would look at the OG explanation, and compare my notes to its explanation.

With the tougher quant questions (I had trouble with mixture and rate problems initially) - just work a ton of them from the OG, and work it like a chemstry problem, and work towards your desired answer (whether it is in m/hour, hours etc). I also did not read problems carefully enough initially.

I don't have a math/science background (finance undergrad), and I know there are a lot of people a lot smarter than me taking this test, so I think I'm proof that it can be done with enough time, effort, and focused studying.

Best of luck to all!!
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Sep 2003, 10:32
Hi Fanninch..

Congratulations! Thats a great score!

About your Quant experience, about how many word problems did you face? They say you generally face about 1/3rd word problems? Were the mixture problems any harder than in the OG? I find them kinda tricky too hence the question ;)

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 [#permalink] New post 04 Sep 2003, 11:44
lazerbud -
Thanks! I would have to say that 10 to 12 is probably about right. The question I mentioned in my initial post (about all the extraneous information) LOOKED like a word problem, but wasn't really. ETS loves to word their problems totally backwards, so it is hard to relate one piece of data to the next. After sorting all of that out, decide what you are looking for, and what unit of measurement it is in (km, km/hour, km/second) and then use the data to get the answer (keeping the units of measurement straight.)

One somewhat difficult rate problem I did encounter on the test involved several steps, but once I rearranged everything in a logical manner, computing the answer was rather easy.

The most difficult word problem on my test was best solved by picking numbers, and fraction manipulation - not too conceptually difficult, but keeping everything in order is the most difficult part for me.

Hope that helps, and good luck.
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ETS tests [#permalink] New post 04 Sep 2003, 20:47
congrats.. great score..!!
one thing i would like to ask is about ETS tests.. besides PP and OG from where else can we get ETS questions and tests. U also said about "recently realsed" tests thas has new questions. From where can i get these tests.
thanks
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 [#permalink] New post 05 Sep 2003, 07:37
Thanks Vicky. Those tests are available at mba.com - at the top of that page there is a link to 'mba.com store' - it is the same place you buy the OG. After you click that link, scroll down and right below the OG is a link for paper tests. I just looked again, and it looks like they just released some new tests on Aug 18, 2003 (my version was from June I believe). It is $25 for 3 tests - remember you are taking the gamble that some of the questions are repeats, but I found at least one of mine wasn't.
Good luck.
  [#permalink] 05 Sep 2003, 07:37
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730/97%(Q50,V38) on 9/3

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