Yesterday I completed my road to the famed 700 as I took the GMAT and received a 710 (Q49,V39). 2 months earlier, I had taken the GMAT and was quite disappointed when I received a score of 650 (Q44, V34).
Prior to my first attempt, I had spent about 2 months studying about 4 hours a week. Most of my studying consisted of taking practice tests and looking over questions in Kaplan
06. I didn't spend much time trying to truly understand my mistakes and figured I was on track for a 700. I had taken a Powerprep (700) and 3 GMATPreps (690,700,710). I was pretty confident that I could score a near 700....little did I know I was a fool.
After my first attempt, I took 2 weeks off to think about my true reasons for applying to business schools. After some prayer and reflection, I reemerged intent on taking the GMAT a second time. I realized that I hadn't really put enough effort into understanding the test and my mistakes especially in DS and SC. I bought OG11
and started working through it. I spent the most time on SC and then on DS and Problem Solving. I decided to not waste time on CR and RC because they were my stronger areas.
During October, my study time was not as much as I had hoped. In addition, a work trip to Guatemala for a week and a half made studying a bit difficult. Nevertheless, the final 2 weeks before my test I spent at least an hour each night studying and then a good 4 hours on the weekend. In addition, I would also spend at least 15-30 minutes on GMATCLUB looking at the the odd question or two and reading people's experiences. I also went through the first 35 of the Brutal SC questions from the verbal forum
This past Monday I took another GMATPrep test and scored a 730 (Q 47,V44). I had a few verbal repeats which probably overinflated that score. Nonetheless, I felt like I had made a breakthough in SC and truly was beginning to see the differences between each choice. My final few days I continued my normal routine and felt at least a 680 was in range.
The night before the test I looked through some of the Stickys and looked over some formulas and some of my past errors in OG. I wanted to give a special thank you to Necromonger's sticky about tricks and traps of DS. I suspect that these tips pushed me up to the Q49 level (I had never scored higher then 48) on a practice exam.
Well there it is. I hope this gives hope to some of you retaking the test. Overall, I have normally been a good standardized test taker which explains my overconfidence going into my first attempt. By my second attempt, I felt that I had a more realistic confidence in my ability and I was pleasantly surprised with my score. I also knew what to expect which helped.
Another Note: If you are taking the test for the first time, the general mental pressure of the taking the real test may lead some individuals to score about 20 to 40 points below your GMATprep score. For those individuals that like to predict their score you may want to take this into account.
Thanks again to the various individuals on this site. Although I'm only a part-time poster...I'm a full-time fan of your work.