780 (Q50, V47) : Share GMAT Experience - Page 3
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# 780 (Q50, V47)

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Manager
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23 Apr 2008, 12:22
Congrats! That is a great score.

I am currently scoring at 680 (Q 48, V34) in practice tests. Planning to go for the test during 3rd week of May. I am working full time and really having hard time to practice.

My weak areas are

Geometry
Number Properties
Word Translations
700-800 rated questions in both Q and V
CR Under Test Conditions (66%)
RC Under Test Conditions (66%)

I have decided to go to Barnes & Noble to pickup Manhattan Guide for both Number Properties and Word Translations.

Even after several rounds of thorough reading and practice in SC, I seem to be missing some of them. Especially hard ones which are completely underlined.

On RC, when I practice with OG : I am getting 95% correct. However, on the test I seem to be scoring at 66%. Same is the case with CR.

Are there any good tips that will take me to 680 league to mid 700s? In PS, how do we practice 700-800 range questions?
Director
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24 Apr 2008, 05:31
Vishy,
You seem to be doing OK in math, so I'm not sure you need to get the MGMAT math guides. If there is only one MGMAT guide you can buy, it's got to be the SC. It will help you with those really difficult SC questions.
As for RC and CR, I went through everything I could in OG11 and the verbal guide. I also bought a paper test but most of the questions in it were already covered in the official guides.

Other than that, I've also heard people use LSAT CR questions which tend to be more difficult than GMAT CR questions. You can try those if you have the time.

Good luck.
Manager
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24 Apr 2008, 07:43
Sonibubu,

Thank you so much for an insightful reply. I agree with you that my Math score is OK. However, I do not want to leave anything to chance in Math as this is my strong area. My intention to buy MGMAT guides on weak areas is to iron out all the weaknesses in Math to be sure that in Math I am going to score on par with the toppers like you .

I already have MGMAT SC guide, this is obviously my bible for SC. Just as in other areas like CR and RC, my scoring rate in the practice exams is far below my scoring rate in when I practice with OG 11. Perhaps, I am too time conscious during the exam and thereby rushing through the questions than giving adequate thought.

Typical problems I face in SC are

Mostly not able to spot common idioms ... generally X Y constructions.
Sentences with participle phrases
Sentences with gerunds
Though I am thorough with the concepts, sometimes find it difficult to identify modifier errors.
On the whole, if I spot the error, chances are that I will answer the question correctly.

In CR, I seem to be having problems with EXCEPT Questions as it is taking long time to cover each of the choices.
I have few issues with inference questions.

In RC, I have problems with very long passages(in MGMAT Practice Exams). I am always in two minds whether to read completely or skim through such a long passage. When I skim through such passages, I tend to get only 30% correct whereas when I read throughly I get 75% correct.

On SAT RC passages, they are very lengthy and we can not go back to the passage unless we scroll the document up. I seem to be loosing focus when I do the scroll repeatedly. However, once again I will give it a try .

Sorry to bombard you with a long message.

Thank you so much.
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09 May 2008, 05:08
vishy007 wrote:
I already have MGMAT SC guide, this is obviously my bible for SC. Just as in other areas like CR and RC, my scoring rate in the practice exams is far below my scoring rate in when I practice with OG 11. Perhaps, I am too time conscious during the exam and thereby rushing through the questions than giving adequate thought.

Typical problems I face in SC are

Mostly not able to spot common idioms ... generally X Y constructions.
Sentences with participle phrases
Sentences with gerunds
Though I am thorough with the concepts, sometimes find it difficult to identify modifier errors.
On the whole, if I spot the error, chances are that I will answer the question correctly.

In CR, I seem to be having problems with EXCEPT Questions as it is taking long time to cover each of the choices.
I have few issues with inference questions.

In RC, I have problems with very long passages(in MGMAT Practice Exams). I am always in two minds whether to read completely or skim through such a long passage. When I skim through such passages, I tend to get only 30% correct whereas when I read throughly I get 75% correct.

On SAT RC passages, they are very lengthy and we can not go back to the passage unless we scroll the document up. I seem to be loosing focus when I do the scroll repeatedly. However, once again I will give it a try .

Sorry to bombard you with a long message.

Thank you so much.

Regarding SC, use the Manhattan guide. It covers all the issues you are having problems with.

I don't like MGMAT's RC and CR examples as I don't believe they are representative of what you will see on the real thing. Especially CR, they are too long compared to the real GMAT's CR passages.

As far as timing goes, 2 minutes per question on quant and 1.5 minutes per question on verbal is the rule of thumb. Then it's time to start thinking about guessing -- educated guesses only of course
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12 May 2008, 14:12
Thanks Sonibubu,

Your fine tuning will definitely help.

On the exam day, during the break time are we allowed to go to the monitor couple of minutes before we finish our 10 min break time? I am planning to prepare POE triangles for Quant and POE sheet for Verbal just before end of break time. Preparing POE sheets is time consuming after the exam start, probably beneficial to prepare them during the break.

How much helpful were the POE sheets during the actual exam? Did they help in eliminating crazy answers?
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16 May 2008, 05:58
Awesome score. Also really enjoyed seeing how you used the various tests to track progress.
Director
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16 May 2008, 08:04
vishy007 wrote:
Thanks Sonibubu,

Your fine tuning will definitely help.

On the exam day, during the break time are we allowed to go to the monitor couple of minutes before we finish our 10 min break time? I am planning to prepare POE triangles for Quant and POE sheet for Verbal just before end of break time. Preparing POE sheets is time consuming after the exam start, probably beneficial to prepare them during the break.

How much helpful were the POE sheets during the actual exam? Did they help in eliminating crazy answers?

During your break, the GMAT software is running a 10 minute timer and automatically starts your test once time is up. Come back to the computer with 2 minutes left and you have plenty of time to make the table before starting the next section.
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19 May 2008, 08:27
Thank You.
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30 May 2008, 07:35
jimmylow wrote:
This GMAT Rubric from MGMAT can help you determine what Q and V score needed to hit Overall score

Nice, I never saw that before...

Congrats!

Director
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30 May 2008, 19:01
Very Nice Score and thanks for sharing your tips.
Congratulations!

- Brajesh
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15 Jun 2008, 06:27
Gr8 Score Buddy Surely Gave me a boost to study more................ Giving GMAT in July 2008
_________________

Every Problem Has a Sloution So keep working
AB

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15 Jun 2008, 20:57
Excellent Score...congrats!!

Can you pls provide me with some tips for tackling RC questions

Thanks
Director
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27 Jun 2008, 06:37
vishy007 wrote:
Thanks Sonibubu,

Your fine tuning will definitely help.

On the exam day, during the break time are we allowed to go to the monitor couple of minutes before we finish our 10 min break time? I am planning to prepare POE triangles for Quant and POE sheet for Verbal just before end of break time. Preparing POE sheets is time consuming after the exam start, probably beneficial to prepare them during the break.

How much helpful were the POE sheets during the actual exam? Did they help in eliminating crazy answers?

The break is completely optional, you can skip it but I wouldn't advise that. Yes you can go back to the test early (One of my breaks was only 7 minutes long).

Not familiar with POE triangles, but yes POE tables did make verbal go smoother.
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27 Jun 2008, 06:38
apurva1985 wrote:
Gr8 Score Buddy Surely Gave me a boost to study more................ Giving GMAT in July 2008

Good luck Apurva
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27 Jun 2008, 06:39
bdumpala wrote:
Excellent Score...congrats!!

Can you pls provide me with some tips for tackling RC questions

Thanks

I liked MGMAT's tips on RC, but not their questions...i.e. they tell you different types of RC (short vs long) you might encounter so read up on that, but practice with real GMAT questions not the MGMAT questions.
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30 Jun 2008, 19:27
How did you improve your veral score???

I have taken MGMAT 1and 2 so far and both of them got about 5 wrongs for both Sc and CR sections..

For most of these wrong answers..i end up with two choices and then apparently select the wrong one..

Do you have any systematic approach for CR and SC sections???

Thanks
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03 Jul 2008, 06:31
I know this is a bit late but - congrats soni!! that's a great score!
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03 Jul 2008, 10:24
Out of curiosity, how did you do on the OG sample questions (approx percentage right in both Quant/Verbal)? Did you track all answers and revisit weaker questions from time to time, or was it a one time effort?
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12 Jul 2008, 17:59
thanks for providing this information
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16 Jul 2008, 00:29
sonibubu wrote:
Hey everyone,
I finally took my GMAT this morning and scored a 780. I was looking for 750 or higher, so suffice to say I've hit my goal. I'm at work right now but I'll write a full debrief either later today or sometime over the weekend.
Also wanted to thanks everyone here at GMATClub for answering questions on the forums and especially for the GMATClub tests -- I'll provide details of why the tests were so helpful in my debrief.

[EDIT] Here's my debrief:
I was hoping to get a 750 or higher and ended up with a 780. Here's a summary of my study/practice strategy and my experience.

Classes and Practice Tests
I took Manhattan GMAT's online course over the fall, from September til December (9 courses). Overall, I think it was pretty good. MGMAT's strenghts are Number Properties, Word Translations, and Sentence Correction. I didn't like their RC and CR methods -- I'll explain my reasoning behind this later in the post.

The MGMAT tests are probably the closest to the real thing (compared to Princeton, Kaplan, etc). I think the verbal on the practice tests is too difficult and the quant difficulty is about the same...except MGMAT emphasizes probability and combinatorics too much on their tests. The real GMAT puts emphasis on number properties, geometry, and good old algebra.

For the last 3 weeks I used GMATClub's tests (http://gmatclub.com/wiki/Tests). The importance of these tests was that they taught me to PAY ATTENTION. For example, "if n is a positive integer..." --- DON'T TRY n=0 or n=-1/2 when trying to solve the problem! PAY ATTENTION TO DETAILS OF THE GIVEN INFORMATION!!! This is where the GMAT catches a lot of people, that's why I double and triple checked everything.

Practice test scores:
GMATPrep1: 700 (Q46, V40)
MGMAT1: 640
MGMAT2: 660
MGMAT3: 730
GMATPrep1 retake: 720 (Q49, V40)
GMATPrep2: 720 (Q49, V40)
GMATPrep1 re-retake: 770 (Q49, V47)
GMATPrep2 retake: 760 (Q50, V45)
GMATPrep2 re-retake: 780 (Q50, V47)
Real GMAT: 780 (Q50, V47)

As you can see, I took each GMATPrep 3 times. Some people only take each test once for practice. I think this is a mistake. The GMATPrep database is pretty big and it's a CAT -- e.g. I didn't see any questions in common between the first take and second. I saw some common questions between the 2nd and 3rd take, but it's still AWESOME practice. The real GMAT has the exact same interface, so there's an extra level of comfort when you've seen the GMATPrep more than a couple times.

Quant
As an engineer by profession, I've always been strong in and had an affinity for math. That being said, I did need help with number properties and Manhattan GMAT was a great help there. Geometry and algebra are my strengths.

One aspect of quant that I believe is overblown is combinatorics. These are pretty rare, and I only saw one on my exam. It wasn't even that hard, I worked it out on paper and didn't use any of the factorial formulas. There was also some probability but it was a medium level question earlier in the test.

Verbal
I always knew that verbal would give me the hardest time. The biggest help for me in this area was Manhattan GMAT's Sentence Correction guide. There is a reason this book is called the "Bible of SC." This is where I learned the real intricacies of the English language such as comparisons, modifiers, pronoun placement, and the like. I read through this book twice during my prep time and I think it was a huge help.

As for the RC and CR, MGMAT encourages taking notes for both. I ended up taking notes only for LONG RC passages and none for the CR. MGMAT's CR passes in their books and practice tests are wayyyy too long compared to real GMAT passages. The short passages on the real test are easy to follow, so I didn't need notes there.

The CR book was helpful in that it tackles different CR questions that can show up on the GMAT -- i.e. "find the assumption", "strengthen the argument", etc. While the idea is right here, again, their passages are way too complex compared to real GMAT passages.

Exam Day
I woke up at 6:30 am for my 8am test. Took a quick shower, ate breakfast, and headed out to Pearson Vue. I put everything in my locker, had my picture taken, was fingerprinted, and sat down at my computer by 8am. This place had more security measures than a maximum security prison!

The AWA went fairly smoothly. The second essay gave me some trouble as I couldn't think of 3 solid examples to back up my opinion of the author's statement. I finished the 2nd essay with about 2 minutes to go. I took advantage of my 10 minute break for 5 minutes. I hit the water fountain and ate my Kudos bar for energy.

I was very confident in the quant section. I think I got the first 7 or 8 right and then ran into some tough geometry, number property, and algebra questions (including mixtures). From there it just got tougher and tougher. The problem here is that I didn't know which questions counted and which ones were experimental (I've heard ~10 are experimental). I may have spent too much time on some of the experimental, as I finished quant with about 20 second left. The last question was of medium difficulty so I think I got #35/36 wrong. I also remember some hard DS questions that I couldn't figure out -- these turn out to be A,B, or D more often than C or E. So I think I made some good educated guesses.

Took another break, drank my overpriced Starbucks Frappucino in a bottle for caffeine. Verbal was easier than I thought it would be. Thanks to my expertise (haha) in SC, I averaged under a minute for SC questions. Good thing, because I took forever on the RC passages. I took a few notes on RC, nothing on CR. I do remember drawing a graph for one CR to help me explain what was happening -- The GMAT loves to take simple info and turn it in to rocket science.

I finished the verbal with about 3 minutes left. I verified my information and clicked that I wanted to see my score. I was expecting a score in the 730-750 range and was pleasantly surprised when a 780 popped up. I raised my hand, the procter came over and said it was only the 2nd 780 she had ever seen. Makes me wonder how rare this really is.

Final Tips
-Study quant basics to death. Don't practice difficult combinatorics and probability questions unless you are 100% confident in your basic quant abilities. Things like number properties (even/odd, prime factors) and geometry (inscribed triangles, areas, perimeter) are way more common than combs/perms.
-Don't take too much time. Don't be afraid to guess when the quant question is beyond your abilities. This is probably one area where I hurt myself, as I forgot some experimental questions are thrown in and spent way to much time on some questions. This probably hurt me later on in the test as I was rushing towards the end.
-Bring food. This is important. The GMAT is a 4-hour test and you will need the energy. Take your breaks and get some water.
-For verbal, learn SC. It's the only thing that has somewhat of a formulaic approach. Use the MGMAT SC guide or something else to help you learn the intricacies of the language. CR includes some logic, RC requires good concentration and the ability to read fairly quickly. So practice, practice, practice all three.
-Finally, take each GMATPrep test at least twice, preferably 3 times. This will help you get comfortable with the format of the exam, and more importantly, will get you some practice with actual GMAT level questions. Just uninstall and reinstall the software after you've taken both tests. Make sure to go back and study the problems you get wrong so you can learn from your mistakes.

Great score buddy.
Re: 780 (Q50, V47)   [#permalink] 16 Jul 2008, 00:29

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