First of all, thank you for GMAT Club for all the experience posts. These posts helped me and motivated me to study hard for GMAT. This post is to keep this good tradition going. Today, I gave my second attempt and scored 710 (Q49 V36). My first attempt was on Aug 10th 2013 (660 Q48 V33). My total preparation time was about 7months with first attempt after 4 months and my second attempt 3 months after the first.
First and foremost in my preparation for GMAT is not loosing heart. Second most important thing is practice, practice, practice and more practice. Someone told me that one cannot improve GMAT scores after the initial score. This is when GMAT club came to my rescue and lifted up my spirits. All I can say is 700 in GMAT is achievable through hard work. For the last three months, I have been studying whenever I find time at work and at home and even while I am traveling for work. I never made any excuses not to study. On an average I spent about 1 to 2 hours everyday on weekdays and about 8 hours per day on weekend.Verbal is a Nightmare
I am a non-native English speaker and of course English is my weakest area. I realized during CATs that even many quant questions require fast English reading. So, after my first CAT practice test (which was in June and which was a disaster), I started to spend about 1 hour every day reading articles from various magazines (Economist
, Science magazine, WSJ opinion, The Atlantic and so on.). This reading practice has tremendously helped me in boosting my English reading skills.
My suggestion for improving verbal score is to treat Sentence correction as your friend. This is the part of verbal section that is relatively easy to master and score points confidently. Again, sentence correction is your friend! For me, RCs are my next good friend after SC. I feel RCs are easy to master and all the required information is in the RC unlike CR. CR is my weakest area in the verbal. I was never consistent with my CR performance..sometimes I get most of them correct and some times not. Also, for me, timing is a problem with CR.CATs for assessing performace and timing
I found that CATs are extremely important in assessing one's studying and also to better timing. My rule of thumb was to give a CAT once in two weeks. Timing is one of the areas that I struggled a lot. There are some good articles on timing strategy by Stacey (Manhattangmat). I used most of her strategies to keep up with timing.Preparation Material
1. Manhattan study guides
2. Kaplan 800
3. Manhattan CATs
5. GMATPrep CATs
6. OG 13
7. Last but not the least...Gmat club (Gmat club has very good collection of good problems from everywhere on the planet!!!!!)
Thats all guys. I know 710 is not that great but I still think my experience will help some one.