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750- 49Q 42V So glad its over!

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750- 49Q 42V So glad its over! [#permalink] New post 29 Dec 2009, 22:52
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Hey all,
Just got back from the Pearson facility and wanted to write a debrief while everything is fresh.

I got a 750 98% (49Q- 87%, 42V-95%)

General impressions:
I am happy with the score I got, but not giddy. 750 was on the lower end of the practice tests I took, but taking test day jitters and stress into account, I am happy :)

I got cheated out of a full minute on my verbal section because there was some problem with their computers and palm recognition software. At the time I didnt care as I usually finished with 10+ minutes in verbal. Of course on this test i needed the time, and got caught between pressing next and confirming my answer on the last question :( I guess Murphys Law was in effect. I know I had the right answer, but no complaints.

Verbal was harder than I anticipated ( I was usually in the 44+ range on practice tests.) I got a lot of long SC, and there were at least 3-4 I didnt remember the rules for (and believe me, everything in the Manhattan SC I knew pretty darn well). Quant was about what I expected. Got a easy one to start, then hit one I had NO IDEA how to solve involving geometry. I knew from my practice tests I could afford to miss a few, so i guessed (pretty sure I was right), and moved on. When I first started studying I used to get flustered when I had to guess. Experience brings patience. Got no prob/comb questions. If you had told me that when i started studying, i would have been happy, as it was my biggest weakness. I worked really hard to get good at them, and at this point I was disappointed they didnt show up :/
Lots of number theory, especially with inequalities. Murphys Law again, as this was my relative weakness. Given the question set, i was happy with a 49. If you can handle the GMAT club hardest Qs, the test will be a cake walk for you. I was around 80% hit rate on those, with the coordinate geometry kicking my butt.

Stamina: My biggest mistake!!! I was a political science and history double major in college (IE, lots of reading comprehension and essays.) I didnt spend more than 20 minutes looking at the AWA. I know i wrote two great essays (expect no lower than 5.5 on each), but they drained me more than i expected. I never did them during practices (i know i know, most EVERYONE says to do them during practice). Big mistake. By the time I was 10 Qs into Verbal, my brain was dying! I struggled through Verbal, rereading many Qs 4-5 times. Again, given these issues i am happy with a 42 in V, but should have gotten 44-46 if i had more stamina. The last 20 Qs I had to channel my inner Kobe Bryant (closer mentality), and I think i finished strong. Struggled reading the survey questions and wanted it all to be over :)
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"Any school that meets you and still lets you in is not a good enough school to go to" - my mom upon hearing i got in
Thanks mom.


Last edited by mustafaj on 29 Dec 2009, 23:04, edited 1 time in total.
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Current Student
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Joined: 04 Nov 2009
Posts: 78
Schools: NYU Stern '12
WE 1: Business Development
WE 2: Superhero- shhhhhh
Followers: 4

Kudos [?]: 16 [0], given: 10

Re: 750- 49Q 42V [#permalink] New post 29 Dec 2009, 22:52
Prep Strategy:
Now for the good stuff.
Books used:
1. Kaplan Live 2010 with Internet access- great for strategy if you have never taken an American standardized test before. Content was ok, but nothing spectacular.
2. Kaplan Math book- Good for review of fundamentals
3. Kaplan 800- worthless worthless worthless
4. Manhattan SC- The best book I bought- worth every penny. Access to Manhattan online CATs made this book even more amazing.
5. OG Guide 12 Edition, OG Math OG Verbal- second editions- make this the first purchase. Cant beat real Qs. Unless you are a GENIUS you can use the practice.
6. Read through a friends CR Bible by Powerscore- good strategies if you are poor at CR, my hit rate after OG was around 94% so I didnt use their strategies too much. Worth the $ if you need the help.

General Prep Strategy: I can't do anything without knowing everything about it beforehand (internet generation i suppose). After some searching came across this board as well as Testmagic. Use both. I prefer the format here, but both have invaluable information. If it was not for previous forum members posting how they got to their score I would never have gotten this far. A million thanks to all the GMATclub folks. My suggestion: spend time scouring the boards for tips, find which ones fit your goals, and apply them. I can barely think right now and I am writing this post because I feel like I owe one to this board.

Make a plan, put it onto a calendar, and stick to it. Sounds simple, but when your buddies come around on Fri and Sat night looking to go drinking, its hard.

Quant Strategies:
Started out really weak on prob/perm/comb questions. I worked to make it one of my strengths. Even though I didnt get any Qs on it, I am glad I can now tell you the probability of it raining exactly 2 days out of 7 if the probability of it raining on any given day is 0.4. :-D
Make an error log like everyone else here advises. My one note about error logs: if it takes you more than 1 min 45 sec to do a problem, add it to your error log, get on this board and find the faster way of doing it. GMAT is about time management first and foremost.
Flashcards!: Make flashcards of relevant equations from the GMATClub mathbook (invaluable resource) and memorize them. By test day, they should come second nature to you.

Verbal:

RC: Didnt do much to "study" here as I did this nonstop for 4 years in college. I suggest getting a subscription to a periodical of your choice (I have been an avid Economist reader for some time now) and read articles that you have no interest in. I got a few science RCs and a race passage. Nothing too difficult, but again this was my strength.

CR: Usually I read the question and use my judgement. I suggest reading through the CR Bible and pick out what works for you. Focus on breaking down arguments into evidence, conclusion, and other info. This makes the strengthen/weaken questions much easier. I got one Boldface Q, nothing too difficult.

SC: I thought this would be my strength before I started as I was an editor in HS for the paper. The GMAT seems to have their own warped sense of rules, but they are easy to learn. Get the Manhattan SC book, make flashcards of EVERYTHING, and slowly start to memorize the rules. This book is especially helpful for non-native speakers as it has a great idiom section.

Using OG intelligently:
My suggestion is to not use the OG until you have studied and are ready to see how you are doing. My suggestion is to wait at least one month after you start studying. These questions are great, use them wisely.

Practice Test Scores (because you really want to know how you are doing)
Kaplan Diagnostic (when i first started)- 600
Kap 1- 650
Kap 2- 660
Kap 3- 640
Kap 4- 590 (eeeek!)
Kap 5- 630
Kap 6- 670

Kap 1- retake after studying for 2 months- 740

GPrep1- 4 weeks out- 720
Gprep2- 3 Weeks out- 730
Gprep1- 2 weeks out- retake 760
Gprep2- 1 week out- retake- 780

Manhattan Tests (4 weeks-1 week out)
M1- 750
M2-760
M3-740
M4-780
M5-770
M6- 740

My brain is turning off. Ill update more when I can think of it. All in all, im glad I am done. Next step is to get my apps finished. Plan to apply to Columbia, Booth, Stern, Kellogg, Stanford for R2. If you have any Qs, please ask.
_________________

"Any school that meets you and still lets you in is not a good enough school to go to" - my mom upon hearing i got in
Thanks mom.

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Schools: LBS,Oxford SAID,INSEAD,NUS
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Re: 750- 49Q 42V So glad its over! [#permalink] New post 30 Dec 2009, 05:04
Congrats mustafa..Good luck for your apps.

did you take the gmat club tests ?
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FEB 15 2010 !!

well I would not disturb you after the D-day ..so please !!!

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Re: 750- 49Q 42V So glad its over! [#permalink] New post 30 Dec 2009, 09:22
mustafaj

Congrats on a great score. Also nice work in sharing your experience.
Good luck on your apps etc. etc. and keep us in touch with your progress with it...!

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Re: 750- 49Q 42V So glad its over! [#permalink] New post 30 Dec 2009, 12:05
Congrats mustafaj. Thanks for the good debrief.

Why did you think the Kaplan 800 book was worthless?
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Joined: 04 Nov 2009
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Schools: NYU Stern '12
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Re: 750- 49Q 42V So glad its over! [#permalink] New post 30 Dec 2009, 12:53
I did use the GMAT club tests this past weekend when it was free. I would have had no problem buying the tests but I ran out of time to study, so i just used them for free :) thanks again to the gmatclub guys for offering holiday access! I did all the hardest questions sets, found them helpful but harder than the real GMAT questions. I also went through two full GMAT club math sets, and found the difficulty comparable to the real thing. Overall, worth a look if you are out of material to study. Make sure to use the forums to find the right way to do each problem!

The Kaplan 800 offered nothing new that couldnt be found on this board or Testmagic.
I was very upset that I bought this book after going through it. It is geared to students who are aiming for 700, not 750+. Dont waste your money. I would have rather put the money toward GMAT club tests.
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"Any school that meets you and still lets you in is not a good enough school to go to" - my mom upon hearing i got in
Thanks mom.

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Re: 750- 49Q 42V So glad its over! [#permalink] New post 04 Jan 2010, 11:50
mustafaj,

On the Quant, how can estimate-
How many you're sure you got right
How many you blindly guessed on
How many you eliminated 2/3 and then guessed
How many you're sure you got wrong

My Quant score on the real GMAT doesn't reflect how I do on GMAT Prep or MGMAT. Not sure why this keeps happening. Any feedback would be great. Thanks.
Current Student
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Joined: 04 Nov 2009
Posts: 78
Schools: NYU Stern '12
WE 1: Business Development
WE 2: Superhero- shhhhhh
Followers: 4

Kudos [?]: 16 [0], given: 10

Re: 750- 49Q 42V So glad its over! [#permalink] New post 04 Jan 2010, 21:54
I dont know how an exact way to measure these things.
If you are having trouble matching your practice scores with real scores, consider how you handle pressure situations. I would practice by taking the GMAT club tests in half the time than allowed, forcing you to work fast.
Other than that I suggest going over the basics again if you are having trouble working up to 46 in Q. If you can hit 47+ consistently then scour the boards and see how some of these brilliant minds approach Q problems. Your way may not be the most effective.

The way i would work with practice Qs is to see which ones I got wrong, and find it on the board. See how it is done, and then DO IT ON PAPER. Do it at least two times, and place it in a log. When you are done reviewing, go through one more time and see if you can do each one without looking at how to do it. Remember, the answers dont matter, the method is what is important.

Do this with every Quant q you get wrong, and you should start to see improvement in your Q score.
_________________

"Any school that meets you and still lets you in is not a good enough school to go to" - my mom upon hearing i got in
Thanks mom.

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Re: 750- 49Q 42V So glad its over! [#permalink] New post 05 Jan 2010, 14:45
congrats dude!
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If you like my post, a kudos is always appreciated ;)

Re: 750- 49Q 42V So glad its over!   [#permalink] 05 Jan 2010, 14:45
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