Date: Feb 20th, Score: 740 - 49Q, 41V, 96%. Debrief outline: Background, study plan, improvement from 640 to 740 in practice tests, D day glitch and finally the exam.Background
: Working professional, high demanding job hence could only dedicate weekends. Studied for 3 months w/ a arithmetic mean of 1 hr on weekdays and ~7 on weekends, with a total of ~180 hrs. I am a non-native English speaker but since I took GRE 5 yrs back, I very well knew my weakest point, i.e. verbal.Preparation
: Started w/ a diagnostic GMAT Prep 1 test and scored 640 so got lil disappointed as my target was 700+ to get into a top MBA finance program. Then started searching online forums including this, manhattan gmat
, and few others. Got a fair idea from these forums and from asking friends and colleagues who had already attempted GMAT ( look how usage of from
makes it parallel
). Finally settled for OG, and MGMAT but I already had Kaplan
and Barron's. SC Focus
: Started w/ SC. According to me, MGMAT SC
is the best source because they take you from basics, to medium level complexity points and finally the advanced topics along with a good practice questions. Non-native speakers please focus on Idioms and verb modifiers, I think it is relatively easy to identify parallel, noun modifiers, and subject-verb agreement errors, but (me specially) Idioms, verb modifier and tenses were weakest link of the chain. Also, recommend using egmat
verbal practice although I did not purchase their course but I took some free strategy sessions. CR
I like the diagramming strategy of MGMAT CR
but soon realized that T diagram is something I cannot achieve w/ 1:30 sec time frame however that doesn't mean it is not helpful but its just that I was not comfortable. RC
, I bought a kindle and started reading lot of good fictional and research books, as well as news articles from WSJ, NY Time and FT. I should say my reading and comprehending speed increased noticeably in 2 months, and I specially recommend WSJ and FT for those who wish to do MBA in Finance ( related area ) because you kill 2 birds at same time by learning how a good grammatically correct article is presented, and by enhancing your finance knowledge base.Quant
: Read and practice all MGMAT quant books and all the OG 12
and OG 11
quant questions, frankly quant on the exam was pretty straight forward with 1 probability and 1 geometry problem at 700+ level.
GMAT Prep 1: 640Study for 1 month, cover MGMAT SC, brush up Quant, OG Quant and Verbal practice
MGMAT 1: 600
Princeton 1: 680Kaplan
: 580Wow what an inconsistency, so focused more on Verbal specially SC and CR as well finished all MGMAT quant books once and at same time kept solving OG questions.
MGMAT 2: 640
MGMAT 3: 680
MGMAT 4: 660 ( aha what a relief )
Princeton 2: 710 ( wow, I think I can achieve it, started analyzing what went wrong knowing that Princeton test are moderately difficult, downloaded GMAT CLUB iphone app
to practice quant while commuting to work. It helps a lot when you solve quant question without a single stroke or pen or pencil, you focus more on strategy than #s or PoE )
MGMAT 5: 700Kaplan
Online Free Practice Test: 740
GMAT Prep 1: 720 ( again )
MGMAT 6: 740
GMAT Prep 2: 720D-Day
: Took my state issued driving license to the test, proctor handed over rules book with a fine print stating "if you are not taking exam in the country of your citizenship you need a passport"
and hell broke loose, it was only 30 mins to exam so called a friend who was kind enough to bring passport from home and I requested extra time. Proctor was kind enough to allow me start exam 30 mins later than scheduled time. Nervous and sweating started my AWA 1, since I had decent practice of writing essay during undergrad and masters I took some time to relax and finished it in time, AWA 2 was easy but I had to agree w/ the issue so little tough to justify the agreement.
Break: Used 5 mins out of 8 mins but went to loo, ate half a granula bar and jumped for 30 sec to increase blood flow.
Quant: Took ~4 mins on the first question but then paced along well on the rest, difficulty level was not high and hence I started thinking may be I am not doing well, but then came the 9th ques on Probability, which confirmed that I was doing fine. Co-ordinate geometry question was tricky but easy to judge and overlapping sets was straight forward too. DS: 4 questions on modulus and thanks to MGMAT tricks which helped to resolve them quickly, as well 2 prime based questions and if I remember 1 evenly spaced set based.
Break: Loo, other half of granula bar, and a good job on the spot, trust me it really helps, on the way back to room had a lil joke w/ proctor about nice she is so a good 10 sec laugh
Verbal: SC: Difficulty level was higher than any practice tests but all question types were familiar and I used 2-3 split on most of them. CR: Long but not confusing, 1 bold face question but again thanks to MGMAT CR
strategy to identify conclusion first and then look at options specially on bold face question. RC: 2 long passage and 2 short, short one were tough to understand but the long ones just took more time to read but easy to solve.Conclusion
: Create a study plan say for 30 days or 60 days, focus on your weakness and be dedicated towards your goal. I will upload flash card I prepared and some more tips I used during my practice later.
PS: Please ignore if any grammatical, meaning or concision errors above
, Thanks a lot to all those who posts their exp, answer SC ques from GMAT Prep specially since prep doesn't give explanation, and to all moderators and founders of this FORUM which really helped me through the journey.