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Can it be done? What would you do?

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Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2008, 04:55
Hi Guys, well I am quite new on this site but I have been reading your threads and I have to say some explosive stuff here!

Anyway here is my spill (bullet points). I have a test in 2 weeks (28th April). I have been studying for the last 3 months but had a 10 day break (for work) about two weeks ago. I thought I was on momentum until yesterday.... I took the GMATPREP and scored a woefull 490. My aim was supposed to be 650+
Dumbstruck, for some reason I am not panicking but I know I should be. I have been following all the Manhattan MGT Books, and I am now going to do the bonus questions and begin the 6 CATS.

I have found out some weak spots in the QUANTS but I dont understand why I am still getting big mistakes. Now, I have realised that timing has much to do with the low score, I answer - like 15-20 questions in the last five mins (G&V) of the test. What will you do?

(A) I am thinking about a private tutor?
(B) Or should I practice more to fix the timing,
(c) Should I home in on the weakness quants,
(D) Should I defer the test (deadline is too close, could strecth it for a week max).
(E) What would you do ?

Talk to me...... In pain :oops:
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2008, 06:09
First of all, you are answering 15-20 questions in the last 5 minutes? Right there should be a sign that you are not enforcing time limits. I mean what's the point of answering any question correct in the beginning if you do that? Your score will plummet. You need to be able to skip questions on the test if you don't know how to answer in 2.....3 minutes max for some. You may be able to increase your score 50 points just by sticking to the time limits (just a guess)

As for your question, you should do all of the above (minus the private tutor unless you can afford it no problem). But if you can only move it back a week then, hm I don't see the point. It probably will be really hard to jump 140 points from gmatprep in 2 weeks or 3 weeks on real test. Why can't you push it back further? Maybe take a test making sure stick to a 2 min a question rule and see how you do.
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2008, 06:12
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Have you done OG 11? If I were you , I would go through OG 11 until i get everything right.Also for SC just focus on MGMAT SC guide. Do the GMATprep atleast 4 times before the exam. I feel you can cross 650 if you are thorough with the concepts in OG. You will be able to increase your pace if your thorough with the concepts in Q and for verbal it boils down to concentration.
All the best

Cheers :king

Last edited by Nihit on 14 Apr 2008, 06:56, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2008, 06:27
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Before you take any drastic steps I'd start practicing your pacing big time. You're basically guessing on the last half of the questions, if you were actually getting to answer those questions your score would be significantly higher.
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2008, 10:38
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Thanks for the reply guys.....

Yes, the timing is awful. I must say it was my first ever prep test so I guess it could be random (fingers crossed).

I will have to do a least three more tests to have a more concerted position on where I stand. I have been using the OG11 but only as the Manhattan GMAT prep book prescribes with its exercises. I will try and push for the 28th April without the tutor as originally planned. I will inform you guys of my development next Tuesday 22nd, by this date I will know whether I should postpone the dates and for how long??

My strategy now will be:

A) Do more Prep tests 3 more within the next 8 days (Manhattan2, GMATPREP1)
B) Strict timing 2-3 minutes max!
C) Analise Mistakes
D) Improve weak areas, don't learn new topics
E) Lose the Tutor

Cheers!
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 15 Apr 2008, 10:00
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I would propose you postpone the date. You seem to have a lot of work to do. But that is just my opinion. I would not take the test unless I feel completely prepared. GL.
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 16 Apr 2008, 06:29
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I would suggest working through the OG11 problems as well.

I am currently taking a Princeton Review course. The course has my working through OG11 problems as well, but completing those other problems from the text can never hurt...
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 17 Apr 2008, 06:09
Do ALL of the problems in OG 11, and give yourself time to do that, even if it means postponing the test. Keep an error log wherein you list even dumb or thoughtless mistakes you made, as well as ones that indicate you didn't understand a particular concept. Carelessness costs the same as ignorance. Remember that each problem is weighted the same - you don't get more points for nailing a difficult problem than you do for an easy one!

People have a tendency to believe that they will only see difficult quant or verbal problems on the exam if they are doing well. THIS IS NOT TRUE. I speak from experience. You will see very manageable problems, too. Don't spend a moment of your concentration trying to "game" the exam - ie, trying to guess which problems were the experimental ones. You will almost always be wrong anyway. Just trudge steadily through it like a good soldier. Spending more than 3 minutes on a problem is GMATicide. Once 2 or 3 minutes is up, make your best guess, move on, and let it go. You should always be pressing forward mentally, not looking back. Timing is CRUCIAL. If you did not study one bit and took another GMATprep test, but made yourself adhere to the time limit rule, you would probably bump your score by a hundred points. No joke. That's how important timing is on this exam. Mind you, I am not advocating not studying... :wink:

Hope this helps.
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 17 Apr 2008, 11:34
Ok, I am doing a FULL MANGMAT test tomorrow. Will let you guys know the score (promise :) ).

I have also contacted a P.Tutor for closer guidance and direction. However, OG 11 with an error log is the focus under a timing of 3 minutes max. After the exam results I will decide whether it will be April 28th or later (May 9th?).

Here goes.....
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 17 Apr 2008, 12:17
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If you had a plumbing problem, wouldn't you call a plumber? A good tutor can save time and pinpoint areas for improvement. Make sure she (or he) sees your scratchwork so that you get suggestions to boost your efficiency. Just remember that having a tutor means that you have to work hard between sessions to get your money's worth
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 18 Apr 2008, 01:06
Ok, Just finished a test!

MGMAT 1. 580 - 40Q 31V.

I guess this is better than the 490 (GMATPREP1) a few days ago with the timing blunder.

Managed to stay on time!. Had loads of time to spare (about 10 minutes) on the quants). The verbal was rusty, totally under estimated it, when it should make up for the lack of Quants.

Going to get some breakfast now and review the test results proper afterwards. I will use a MGMAT private tutor as well....

Your thoughts are most welcome.....

Still yet undecided wheather to take the test on 28th April or May 9th?

Cheers! :wink:
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 18 Apr 2008, 02:38
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Dont' want to be rude, but MGMAT CAT compared with GMATprep means nothing. Performance on the test day will be much closer to the GP, I am speaking from personal experience: 2 days before my 2nd attempt I have done GP and scored 590 (Q42 V29) and MGMAT scored 700 (Q49 V37). My actual exam score was 610 (Q42 V31), I was surprised how though was verbal on GP and hoped that it is not representative of a real deal. Unfortunately, it was...

I think that MGMAT has some scoring problems, besides unrepresentative difficulty level of math and poorly written verbal. Similarly as Kaplan and PR, MGMAT tends to "compress" scores. What does that mean? However much you are truying to improve and no matter what you do, CAT will consistently giving you some average score of 600 - 700 (unless you are Hjort or some other legend of test taking :wink: ).

I beleive that CAT's of 3 companies that I mentioned are somehow unfinished, they don't even have some sophisticated scoring system. Instead, CAT is altering the level of questions untill it finds some level that you fit in, after that it puts you in some kind of bracket (600-650 or 650-700) and randomly pulls the "final score", for example: if you are in 550-600 bracket it will randomly pull scores 570, 590 or 550. Of course, even the ability of the CAT to put you in a proper bracket is questionable, not to mention the final outcome.

Of course this is just an oppinion of total IT amateur. That is just my observation of the results and conclusion based on nothing more than that observation. I have not a single one evidence to support this conclusion.

The purpose of my writting is not to dicourage you. You should study hard, sit for an exam and then move on to the next step. It is a simple algorithm: either you are satisfied with score or study hard again and sit for an exam again. ManhattanGMAT instructors claim that approximately 3 months of studying is neceserry for the 50 point score increase. According to my experience, they are very, very, very close.

Of course, some greater discrepancies between GP and a real deal are viable, especially on the 450-600 level. Lets hope this (positive) discrepancy shall be in your favour. Wish you best luck.
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 18 Apr 2008, 05:18
Pathfinder is correct. The MGMAT CATs are ok for practice - they will help you nail down concepts, since they provide detailed explanations in the answer keys. But your performance on the GMATprep CATs will mirror your performance on the actual exam. If you look at the results everyone here posts, time and time again this proves to be true - margin of error tends to be +/- 30 points at most. Usually it's a lot closer.

The private tutor idea is excellent, and MGMAT is great. I took the 9 week MGMAT course and raised my score 60 points. If you diligently apply yourself, you should be in good shape. It's better to study for a couple of hours each night, if you can, rather than trying to cram everything into a weekend of studying, just FYI.

Good luck!
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 18 Apr 2008, 10:36
uphillclimb wrote:
Do ALL of the problems in OG 11, and give yourself time to do that, even if it means postponing the test. Keep an error log wherein you list even dumb or thoughtless mistakes you made, as well as ones that indicate you didn't understand a particular concept. Carelessness costs the same as ignorance. Remember that each problem is weighted the same - you don't get more points for nailing a difficult problem than you do for an easy one!

People have a tendency to believe that they will only see difficult quant or verbal problems on the exam if they are doing well. THIS IS NOT TRUE. I speak from experience. You will see very manageable problems, too. Don't spend a moment of your concentration trying to "game" the exam - ie, trying to guess which problems were the experimental ones. You will almost always be wrong anyway. Just trudge steadily through it like a good soldier. Spending more than 3 minutes on a problem is GMATicide. Once 2 or 3 minutes is up, make your best guess, move on, and let it go. You should always be pressing forward mentally, not looking back. Timing is CRUCIAL. If you did not study one bit and took another GMATprep test, but made yourself adhere to the time limit rule, you would probably bump your score by a hundred points. No joke. That's how important timing is on this exam. Mind you, I am not advocating not studying... :wink:

Hope this helps.

I like the word GMATicide.. :-D good creativity.Thanks
So coming to the point, last week on Sunday monrning I took GPrep1 and scored 580..What the Hell? Whatt Thhhee HeLLL??
Obviously I was so depressed in the noon stared into the sky, TV, all the items in my house.Why ? Becoz I have been preparing for 2 months now..and my score was around 620 then. OK after depressing noon, I decided to give it a shot again.
Gave GPrep2 and scored 700(no questions repeated). Happy...Happy...But wait, what the hell? is going on? Which score should I believe.now.
Can any one throw some light here...
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 18 Apr 2008, 10:42
Saravalli, the answer is...believe neither of them! Keep taking the CATs, make notes about the problems you got wrong, and eventually you will start to see a pattern where you level out at +/- 10-20 points each time. Then you have a good indicator. Is your weak spot quant or verbal right now?
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 18 Apr 2008, 10:52
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In quant i am getting 42 to 44.
Now verbal is entirely different.I worked on SC1000 and CR1000 like a donkey.
I feel very confortable in SC & CR. Hit rate was 10/14 in SC, and 10/11 in CR.
But wait...RC hit rate is 4/16. I had to guess a complete passage ..i think 4 questions in row.

The real problem starts now. Lets say I focus on RC by thinking/practicing day and night..I AM getting a hit rate of 12/16 but at the same time losing a huge chunk of questions in CR...and this pressure taking more points from my SC.

Its like balloon.If I concentrate on one side then I lose on the other side.. :?:
I decided to practice RC for an entire month (MAY)..but my fear is what if this balloon theory manifests on D-Day.
:?:
my D day is in June 1st week.Whens your D day?
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 18 Apr 2008, 11:03
good luck on RC, you can crack it. I will be going for my 2nd GMAT attempt tomorrow. I am looking to demolish verbal. I feel as if I should get every one of them correct. That is my mindset going in :) RC is very hit or miss depending on concentration. My approach is to read through the whole passage and get the gist, noting shifts in directions etc. Then as you answer, you really need to pick apart each answer. Usually the correct answer uses synonyms of words to throw you off while another answer choice uses the same language as the passage. I feel this is one of the biggest things to look out for in RC.
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 18 Apr 2008, 11:31
saravalli wrote:
In quant i am getting 42 to 44.
Now verbal is entirely different.I worked on SC1000 and CR1000 like a donkey.
I feel very confortable in SC & CR. Hit rate was 10/14 in SC, and 10/11 in CR.
But wait...RC hit rate is 4/16. I had to guess a complete passage ..i think 4 questions in row.

The real problem starts now. Lets say I focus on RC by thinking/practicing day and night..I AM getting a hit rate of 12/16 but at the same time losing a huge chunk of questions in CR...and this pressure taking more points from my SC.

Its like balloon.If I concentrate on one side then I lose on the other side.. :?:
I decided to practice RC for an entire month (MAY)..but my fear is what if this balloon theory manifests on D-Day.
:?:
my D day is in June 1st week.Whens your D day?

What has been your strategy for RC? Different approaches work for different people...terp has some good advice. I pretty much did the same thing with mine - skimmed the passage once while taking very brief notes about main ideas of each paragraph. Helped keep my focus.

And thank everything that's holy, I already had my D-Day!! :lol:
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Re: Can it be done? What would you do? [#permalink] New post 18 Apr 2008, 11:47
Oh then thanks a bunch for taking time to be here on the forum.seriously.

I did not plan RC at all. I know we should take notes and paraphrase..etc.I could do it only for the first 2 passages and then this time pressure kicked in..and becoz I knew i will blow it up I said to myself assume there is no RC in this test and thats how I could concentrate on SC/CR. But I can't this mistake on D day.
I am half way through the CR1000..and it might take another 25 days to finish it.
Did you finish 1000's?

All the best for your applications.
Re: Can it be done? What would you do?   [#permalink] 18 Apr 2008, 11:47
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