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760, Didn't answer the last question... TLDR included

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760, Didn't answer the last question... TLDR included [#permalink] New post 21 Jan 2012, 23:32
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On my second practice test on MGMAT I was about to solve the last quant question when the time ran out. I didn't answer a question. At the end of the test I looked at the score adjustments and found out that on the second last question I had a 99% rating and due to not answering the last question it fell to 85... Looking back it seems that if you're riding high on 99% towards the end, one question wrong only drops you to 97%. Basically I lost 12% to indecision.

Fast forward to today. I get to the bus stop in downtown San Francisco and find a pro-life protest as far as the eye can see - so I walk. Looking back I think the GMAT is much about your mindset so do whatever you have to do, whether it be coffee, a brisk walk or telling off some pro-lifers, get in the right zone.

I get to the center and take my test. The quant is hit or miss and I quickly guess one or two that seem out of my league or test questions. Curiously I didn't get the Combo's, Perma's, Tough Geo or any of the questions I prepared for. So here I am at the official GMAT on the last quant question with 20 seconds left and by the time I wrote the equation down, the time ran out.

Needless to say, I was devastated. I was sure that my quant just dropped to 85(and it did). Heck I wanted to leave. Starting verbal, all I could think about was that last question. I wasn't even reading anymore. 3 minutes into cursing the '9 minutes ago me', he responded and told me to shut up and keep trucking. You cant change the quant, your grades or your undergrad. So I focused on what I could change.

I decided to ace the verbal. I feel what helped me the most was actually double checking. When you read through and go through these questions, once you choose the answer, your immediately response may be to click next. Dont do that. Imagine the incredulous feeling you get when review your practice GMAT like Sherlock Holmes would. Critique the 'heck' out of your answer. Then move on.

I accepted my score and saw a 760. 49Q 44V. If their is a scoring expert out there please tell me what that extra question would have net. If I had one piece of advice to give, its this: When you practice you learn and you get better. You may even need to practice decisive ball-parking. When your on stage, trust yourself and run with it.

Thanks to the GMATclub forum, some of the contributors here really make this work.
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Re: 760, Didn't answer the last question... TLDR included [#permalink] New post 21 Jan 2012, 23:33
TLDR : Answer all the questions. Including that last one.
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Re: 760, Didn't answer the last question... TLDR included [#permalink] New post 21 Jan 2012, 23:38
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Fantastic score! Congratulations! That's 99th percentile.

The official GMAC response is that each question you leave unanswered penalizes you 3 percentile points for that section. E.g. you got Q49, that's 86th percentile these days, and Q50 is 93rd. Depending on your position, you may have not lost any points but most likely you would had Q50. (Similar to MGMAT, when you get up that high, the penalty can be much higher).

Assuming you would have gotten Q50 and V44, that's in between 760 and 770, you could still have scored a 760 if you had a "soft" 50 or "soft" 44.

Unfortunately one more tip - it is wise to mark any answer on the last few questions before you start solving. Even if you marked an answer but did NOT confirm, it will still count at the end, similar to the AWA essays that will count when the time runs out, even if you do not click the Submit button.
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Re: 760, Didn't answer the last question... TLDR included   [#permalink] 21 Jan 2012, 23:38
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