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First Attempt 7x0... (need advice)

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First Attempt 7x0... (need advice) [#permalink] New post 04 May 2007, 06:37
I wish the "x" in the subject was number other than zero but zero it is.
I took my first GMAT today and got 700 (Q49 V35).

I don't know whether I should be happy...(I'm sorry :) )
To be honest, I'm disappointed because my goal was to get 740+. I felt that as an international student, I should score higher than what the schools show as the average GMAT of the entering class. It may sound absurd but I would like to, and plan to, apply to top 10 b-schools in the US; Wharton, HBS, Columbia, Chicago, etc. And I just looked up the average GMAT for Wharton and it's 713. :cry: While 700 is a good score, many of you who are applying to such competitive schools know that 700 isn't a "great" score, it will just be enough to keep you in the game.

I had confidence that I would be able to achieve my target score of 740.
My GMATPrep practice test scores are as follows:
770 (Q50 V44)
710 (Q49 V38)
740 (Q51 V38)
750 (Q49 V42)
760 (Q50 V42) <- taken two days before the real thing..so on May 2nd!
Other exams, I'd say the average is about 720 with Q mostly 49 and V in the late 30s or early 40s.

I recognize that you get nervous when taking the actual exam and so you should expect a slightly lower score. Although I got 49 in Q most of the time, I later realized that I had made silly mistakes, so I had this stupid hope that on the real thing, I would concentrate and get 50~51. Well, today, I kinda panicked on the second question (I shouldn't have, it wasn't that hard...but the fact that the clock was ticking and my thinking that "dude, it's only the second question, it shouldn't be giving me this trouble and I should get it right!" made me feel uncomfortable) and had spent nearly 5 minutes on the first two...I don't know why...but I had this "black out" on the second question :cry: I hated it. I ran out of time and had to blindly guess the last 6 questions. :shock: Maybe I should be thankful for even getting 49 in Q. The verbal went fine and I was hoping for a score over 40. Well, I got 35 and I don't know why...

I must admit that I have been overly confident. Just because I scored over 700 consistenly in the practice tests (GMATPrep and others), I thought I could do it again on the real thing... :oops:

A bit about me.
I'm 22, male, and my nationality is Korean.
I'm currently on leave from school doing my military service (which is 2 yrs and is mandatory for all Korean men :( ). I'm getting back to school this September as a junior. I will be graduating in June 2009. I plan to apply for full-time MBA in fall 2011! (by the time I enroll in 2012, I'll have 3 yrs of work experience) :)

Now you may be wondering why on earth did this little guy who has not even graduated from college take GMAT? Well, since GMAT score is valid for 5 yrs, I decided that I might as well get it out of the way when I have the time to study. I think I'll be busy when I get back to school studying math and when I work after graduation (I'll have to worry about essays and stuff). And, I'm planning to go for the CFA as I work, so I'll even have less time for GMAT. (Am I trying to juggle too many things here? Please berate me if I am. Maybe I'm trying to over-do things...)

My dillemma is this.
I did not get the score that I hoped to get, and I know that 700 isn't itself great for competitive schools. I would like to give a second shot at it (I just know that I can do better in Q, and V was just disappointing today). But when? Should I take it this June or July to achieve my purpose of getting GMAT out of the way years before, or, since 700 is decent, I should take it when I apply 4 years from now to give the adcom a more recent performance? Btw, do you think the adcom will "like the score less" when it is nearly 5 yrs old?

As of now, I'm kind of inclined to take it again this June~July while:
1) I have the time before getting back to school (although there are many people who are preparing for GMAT while working full time and so there is no reason why I shouldn't :oops: )
2) I'm still fresh from studying for the past couple of months. If I retake it 3~4 yrs from now I'll have to study again.
And feel "great" if I do well and get GMAT out of the way once and for all.

And frankly, a better score will help me even more in applying for places like McK***ey and B**n which is very hard to get in here, after graduation. Returnees from the US who have graduated from ivy league schools will also be applying for positions in such places (I assume) so I'll need all I can get. Although GMAT is not required, I can nevertheless mention it (they tell you to mention it if you've taken it).

Whew...

Thank you for hearing me out thus far. (I wrote soooo much!!)
It feels good to share this with others, at least through a post.
I may have sounded arrogant, opportunistic, and trying to over achieve things (I'm only 22!) I apologize :( and implore you to criticize me, berate me, or advise me to take things easier or differently. I'm all ears and will appreciate your help.

Last but not least, I would like to thank kevincan, dwivedys, kidderek, OasisNYK, Amardeep Sharma, Mishari, javed, kyatin, Summer3, Tuneman, botirvoy, vijay_2001, and many others of this club who have helped me with their insights.

I will see you around. :)

ricokevin
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 [#permalink] New post 04 May 2007, 06:57
congrats..i was looking forward to your gmat experience post :)

I have to start studying myself seriously too..good lord..its like deja vu all over again
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 [#permalink] New post 04 May 2007, 07:06
hey man, Congratulations with the result!!!
You haven't done as bad as you think :) - i have done much worse than you, but I ll talk about it on my own thread later...

If you think you can score higher, then have a go one more time! If you can , re-take it in the next 3m while you are still "in-form".
I would suggest that you re-take it in 2m. 2m is long enough time to do lots of practice and build mental strength. 1m would probably leave you a bit nervous.

Also, dont rely on the GMAT Prep scores - you know that there will be many repeats from test to test, especially in the verbal section.

But, the bottom line is, you have a decent score!

So RELAX!
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 [#permalink] New post 04 May 2007, 07:23
Cheer up ricokevin :-D 700 is a great score! although I was expecting you to score higher. I remember you were scoring higher on Powerprep when you rescheduled your exam. You have plenty of time - I'm 28 now and will be 29 by the time I expect to start my MBA. It's difficult to tell how the GMAT scene will look like for applications in 2011-12. I read an article a few days back that the number of applicants from China to the US was declining because they prefer to study in China now because of some good institutions. Not sure if something similar might happen in Korea but it'll be good for you if it were to happen :P less competition. And Your military service will set you apart from many applicants I believe. If you weren't getting these high scores on Powerprep because of repeat questions then I suggest you re-take the exam.

You guessed the last 6 questions and still got Q49 :wow that's more like the ricokevin we know. Your Verbal experience seems to be similar to tennis_ball's - underperformance for some reason. You two are obviously much better than V35. Maybe it was loss of concentration - I can't start to imagine what damage a blackout on the test can do to you. If you decide to re-take, try to keep up your energy levels up, especially when to get to the end of the Verbal. Take steroids if you need to - I don't think they are banned on the GMAT :P
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 [#permalink] New post 04 May 2007, 07:34
First, congratulations on your score .. The bottom line is: you're a member of the 7xx club :-D

If I were in your shoes, I'd take the test again. I'm 23 now so I understand your plan as it's fairly similar to mine.

If you're aiming for more than 720, then go for it. Relax for a week, then pack your stuff and start the GMAT plan again.

This time, work harder on verbal. Participate more on the verbal forum and work on the OG verbal review.

Finally, ricokevin, we all know you are a 740+ gmatter. I'm not saying you can do it, I'm sure you WILL do it. You know GMAT inside out by now. You just need to practice more to boost your confidence.
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 [#permalink] New post 04 May 2007, 08:36
ricokevin, I'm going to be straight and brutally honest with you. I believe that for you to take the GMAT now when you plan to apply in 2011 is a mistake. I've heard (Repeat: heard, not know) that adcom 'prefer' scores that are not more than 2 years old. Your current score in the year 2011 will be around 4 years old. I assume that the adcom will factor in the time since the GMAT for you as people's academic capablities tend to slide as they get older.

Now coming to your specific case: You are still a freshman at college at the age of 22. So when you graduate in 2009, you should be 24/25. I would suggest giving the GMAT in late 2010 (Nov, Dec) or early 2011 (by Feb) for two reasons:

1. You'll be about one year out of college and therefore still in touch with your academic abilities. Getting a competitive score should not be a problem for you.
2. You score will be less than 2 years old when you apply in 2011 and therefore ADCOM will not need to figure in age as a factor.


If I were you, instead of concentrating on retaking the GMAT, I would concentrate on strengthening the other parts of my profile (viz extra curriculars, community service, etc. ) . Then again, I am nothing but a humble applicant. So my advice has to be taken with a pinch, nay, a LOT of salt :) Hope that helped!

- Kripal
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 [#permalink] New post 04 May 2007, 09:30
congrats man, but I do agree with kripalkavi 2 years in advance is ok but if it's over you might loose some points
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 [#permalink] New post 04 May 2007, 17:36
Congrats dude.. You are on right path. GMAT score is important but definately not everything. Check out the listings on admissions 411. You will see that 700 is a decent score and chances of getting in top 10 is same as scoring 750, provided your eassys and other parts of application is good.

Since you have time before applying I would advise to start looking in building a good application. Adcoms want applicats to be different, so try to be as different as possible. Choose good projects at work, good extracirrcular activities etc.

Best Wishes!!

VJ.
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 [#permalink] New post 05 May 2007, 02:33
Thank you all for your encouragement and advice! :-D
700 is still good, just that the goal (740+) was more challenging.

vikramjit_01, I didn't know you thought very high of me. I'm flattered. :)
Thanks.

kripalkavi, I appreciate your being straight with me. :) I should take your advice into account.

I still haven't finalized my decision of when to re-take it yet...
But for now, I'll just chill and give it some time.

I'll be around.
Happy weekends~! :-D
  [#permalink] 05 May 2007, 02:33
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