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First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38

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Joined: 15 Oct 2011
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Concentration: Finance
GMAT 1: 680 Q44 V38
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First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38 [#permalink] New post 08 Feb 2012, 09:08
Just got back from the test centre in Holborn, London, after my first (and hopefully last) crack at the GMAT. Overall I'm pretty happy with the score, considering how inconsistent my results were throughout the prep period. First, some background information: I'm a 22 y/o language student, and currently in my final year of study. I realised about 3 months ago that I had to sit the GMAT in order to apply for my chosen Masters programme, so I set about gathering all the information I needed about the test and buying resources. Needless to say, it was an arduous journey, but one that was ultimately worth the hassle!

So, what material did I use? I started by reading through the MGMAT books and taking notes on just about everything I read. I should mention at this point that my quant skills were absolutely WOEFUL at the beginning - I couldn't even complete the diagnostic test in the OG, let alone tell you the difference between a quadratic and linear equation. See, the thing was, I hadn't actually done any maths really for about 6 years and I hated the subject during my school years. Therefore, as you can imagine, quant was just about my worst nightmare. The only reason this is worth mentioning is because ANYONE can improve their quant score, as long as they're willing to put in the hours. Try not to get discouraged, keep revising and keep pushing yourself. Anyway, back to the topic in hand. After my tussle with the MGMAT books, I purchased Jeff Sackmann's questions; these are probably the best purchase I made for quant, as his concise, well presented explanations allow you to really engage with the topics you're revising. I did roughly 1700 of them and kept a pretty detailed error log, which I revisited as often as I could.

With regards to the verbal section, I really didn't do that much prep. I was pretty comfortable with both the SC and CR sections, but struggled a bit with the RC. For this reason, I decided to purchase Zeke Lee's Verbal Pill - another brilliant purchase. I listened to his videos at night before I went to bed and took notes on the relevant info, particularly his SC and RC Pills. I couldn't recommend them highly enough, and you should purchase them if you want an efficient way to improve your verbal skills.

On the subject of practice test, my results were unbelievably inconsistent (as I've already mentioned). I sat 4 GMAT Preps in total, and had scores ranging from Q49 to Q44, and V39 to V29. On that basis, I bombed the maths part quite hard in the real test, but picked it up in the verbal. Still, don't let that discourage (there's that word again!) from using Sackmann's sets - I had a bit of a nightmare with some of the DS questions on the actual test, and that certainly hurt my score.

Right, the test itself. I arrived early and just sat in a cafe, read through my notes and skimmed over my error log. I figured that if I didn't know something by now, I was probably never going to get it! I completed the AWA section in about 45 minutes, then took my first break. Quant time! I can't remember the precise questions I got, but there were a few horrible exponent questions and some DS questions that, in retrospect, I really must have screwed up. Still, it all passed without too much of a problem and I finished with roughly 4 minutes on the clock. Verbal time! As I've said, I wasn't too worried about this section of the exam and it wasn't too hard, although I did have an absolutely disgusting, 4-paragraph-long, RC about wine and its storage. That upset me quite a bit, but I moved on, none the wiser as to whether I had messed it up. In the end, I finished with roughly 20 minutes left and filled out the final section about my personal background... clicked next... and... BOOM! Up came my score. At first I wasn't that happy with my quant, but I'm not going to dwell on it too much.

Finally, some advice: YOU CAN DO THIS. It may take you a while and it may temporarily break you, but you need to keep plugging away. If you ever need a question answered, don't hesitate to get in touch; I'll always try my hardest to help you out.

Rich
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Re: First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38 [#permalink] New post 08 Feb 2012, 20:01
For a poet (read someone who likes the languages more than quants), you have handled quants quite well - effective, focused and efficient preps that! Congrats on a good score.

Did you find Jeff Sackman's quant tutorials a good way to build your GMAT quant base?

Cheers

Santanu
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Re: First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38 [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2012, 20:19
Congrats on the score! :) I also scored a 44 in Quant... and I was wondering, at this level, do you feel that Jeff Sackmann's questions will be of great help? I have all of the MGMAT books, and plan to go through them thoroughly (I bought them after my first GMAT attempt). I hope to raise my Q score into the upper 40s... and my V score as high as I can.
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Re: First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38 [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2012, 22:31
congrats
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Re: First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38 [#permalink] New post 10 Feb 2012, 02:18
Santanu76 wrote:
For a poet (read someone who likes the languages more than quants), you have handled quants quite well - effective, focused and efficient preps that! Congrats on a good score.

Did you find Jeff Sackman's quant tutorials a good way to build your GMAT quant base?

Cheers

Santanu


Absolutely, I couldn't recommend them highly enough - he reinforces the fundamentals and also knows when (and how) to stretch you.
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Joined: 15 Oct 2011
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Location: United Kingdom
Concentration: Finance
GMAT 1: 680 Q44 V38
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Kudos [?]: 6 [0], given: 1

Re: First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38 [#permalink] New post 10 Feb 2012, 02:23
elleesie wrote:
Congrats on the score! :) I also scored a 44 in Quant... and I was wondering, at this level, do you feel that Jeff Sackmann's questions will be of great help? I have all of the MGMAT books, and plan to go through them thoroughly (I bought them after my first GMAT attempt). I hope to raise my Q score into the upper 40s... and my V score as high as I can.


I certainly do, yes. The scope of his Challenge Sets (not to mention his Extreme Challenge Set) is pretty vast, taking you all the way from upper-500s to upper-680s and beyond. I should mention at this point that I was performing much better in the GMAT Prep exams - my highest Q score was 49 - and this was mainly thanks to the sets. I just sort of bottled it on test day...
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Re: First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38 [#permalink] New post 13 Feb 2012, 19:21
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For this reason, I decided to purchase Zeke Lee's Verbal Pill - another brilliant purchase. I listened to his videos at night before I went to bed and took notes on the relevant info, particularly his SC and RC Pills. I couldn't recommend them highly enough, and you should purchase them if you want an efficient way to improve your verbal skills.


Great to hear we were able to help! Congrats!
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Re: First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38 [#permalink] New post 13 Feb 2012, 23:45
Good Debrief. Congrats for your score.
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Re: First GMAT Attempt - 680 Q44 V38   [#permalink] 13 Feb 2012, 23:45
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