I took the GMAT for the first time two weeks and had some mixed results. Overall score was as follows: 690 overall (87%), 49 Q (81%), 34 V (70%), 8 IR (93%), 6 AWA (91%). I was pleased with the IR and AWA score and felt fine with the Q score. However, the V score was a bit of a bummer. To give some background, I am planning to pursue my PhD in Accounting. While I'm not targeting the super-elite schools, I am looking at some of the higher ranked institutions within a specific accounting field (think Washington, UNC, etc). Most of these schools that report average scores of those admitted are in the 700-730 ballpark. I know some guides that say you're fine once you're at or around 700, but I feel that is mostly targeted towards MBA applications rather than PhD applications.
Some other pertinent information: I took 3 MGMAT practice tests which ranged from 650 - 700 and 2 GMATPrep practice tests, which ranged from 700 - 710 (the Q/V split on these was pretty similar to my actual score). I used all 8 of the MGMAT books
plus the OG (12th ed) for preparation and nothing else.
So, the big question is: should I retake? To be completely honest, I probably did not prepare enough for the V section as I figured I would be able to handle it without too much issue as English is my first (and only) language. That turned out to not be the case. I think the primary issues were lack of preparation and fatigue; I feel I simply ran out of energy by the time the Verbal came around. It's hard to pinpoint which parts of the Verbal section I struggled on, but if I were to guess, I'd say it was SC and/or CR. I feel if I hone in on some of the Verbal concepts in further detail then I should be able to improve my score enough to reach my target, which is ideally over 700 and preferably right around 720. I'm confident the AWA/IR/Q scores are not flukes; I never scored below 49 Q on any of the GMATPrep practice exams and felt the Q questions on the actual test were relatively straight-forward.
Anyway, thanks for reading and any insight you might have! I'll browse the forums for guides on improving V to around 40, but if anyone has any good links they know off-hand I would certainly appreciate them.