I am back again, guys
More than one month has passed since my first and latest post here. first-gmat-attempt-153718.html
Independence day of US has become my day of independence from GMAT
You may think that 680 is not a decent score and is not that worth of writing debrief, but since I am not planning to re-take GMAT I feel obliged to somehow contribute to this forum. I want to emphasize again that you guys are wonderful at least because you read my post, at least because you challenge yourself and at least because you want to change something in your life.
I imagined the moment of writing the debrief maybe million times, well... every time when I read inspiring stories of successful test takers. IMO, GMAT is not testing one's intellectual abilities since the basics of math and english grammar can be well acquired using proper books. Rather, GMAT tests whether you can endure the stress of the exam, whether you can properly manage your time and probably the most important whether you can adequately apply what you learned throughout a preparation. So, please practice as much as you can, but do it only if you have covered all necessary books and built enough foundation of (thanks God exhaustive) list of areas tested by GMAC.
I first started my preparation almost 2 years ago. Heard somewhere about Barron's GMAT and bought it. I didn't know about other alternatives and recommended resources and having gone through Barron's was wondering why people struggle so much with the test. I simply didn't realize that the math section of the book and the explanations were aimed at someone who wanted to score 500. The book did what it ought to and I scored 520 (dont remember breakdown) on my first GMAT Prep. Disappointment, destruction and despair are not the only words to describe my feelings. The most terrible thing is that I did not pay attention to breakdowns, I didn't know what scaled scores meant and thus couldn't properly analyze my weaknesses. I strongly recommend that you do so, every time you take practice test make sure you know where you failed, write down incorrect questions and go through them, look for explanations here on the forum and get back to them the last week of preparation.
I cannot explain my stubbornness but I went on with Barron's for another 4 months and consistently scored low 500s in Gmat Prep practice tests. I had hundred of thoughts, the most frequent of which I wasn't created for GMAT. Please, I beg you, get rid of these kind of thoughts immediately and don't ever allow them to approach you.
So, 2011 ended with no achievement. I resumed my preparation in April of 2012 with Kaplan
GMAT and MGMT 8 books and hoped for an improvement . Covered Kaplan
in 2 months and started to take mock tests. The best score was 560, again didn't pay attention to scaled scores. The black clouds of thoughts appeared again and walked around me. My preparation slowed down to couple of times a week but only with Manhattan books
. Did it mainly while lying on a sofa after an exhausting working day. Then I got engaged and GMAT preparation was shifted away by wedding preparation. Got married in October 2012, honeymoon, moving to the city where I work and GMAT is almost forgotten.
It was around November when I heard about IE coming to the country to conduct its own admission test. Thought that it would be a great chance to get into top business school without GMAT. So, I attented the test, passed it, applied and finally got admitted. My happiness did not know the borders since IE offered one year MBA with truly diverse class, focus on entrepreneurship. At the same time, its outstanding ranking and the possibility to learn Spanish were forcing me to relax till the class starts.
However, the feeling that GMAT did beat me and that I could not prove myself, my family and my wife that I am able to crack it, did not leave me calm. So I again began to read debriefs which people wrote here, came across various thoughts and study plans and systematized them. Kick off in March 2013, went through MGMAT books
again, focused on number properties, geometry and inequalities which I repeated three times. Kept error log
in MGMAT OG Archer and completed OG 12
and Verbal Review. I also purchased GmatClub tests
which helped me tremendously to boost my score to Q 47. As for Verbal, the only books to be comfortable with Verbal section are MGMAT SC
and Powerscore CR
Bible. They are more than enough to get solid ability to tackle Verbal. I suppose if I spent more time practicing and shaping what the books provide I could have got even V40. As I mentioned above my mock results showed positive changes.
GMAT Prep test - 660 Q44 V37
MGMAT 1 - 610 Q44 V31
MGMAT 2 - 650 Q44 V35
MGMAT 3 - 670 Q44 V37
Real GMAT - 600 q42 v 31 (May 30)
At least I got the first real score which is not miserable 500s. Nevertheless I went on to simultaneously prepare for math and verbal. And MGMAT 4 - 610 Q44 V31. At this time I decide to forget about quant and focus only on verbal. Subscirbed to e-gmat
SC online course and strengthened what I learned from MGMAT SC
. Although I have not experienced e-gmat
Verbal Live, I assume that online course is less effective than live courses. Still I recommend e-gmat
SC course for those who need to underpin his or her grammar knowledge with SC approach method.
Having spent almost three weeks on verbal I took Gmat Prep 2 on 30th June and scored... guess how much?...no, 590 Q47 V23. I have no clue how that happened. My quant improved without touching it for almost a month and verbal to which I dedicated all my time, dropped significantly.
The reason is timing. Guys don't ever underestimate timing.
Please read this article, I did it after 590:http://www.manhattangmat.com/blog/index.php/2013/01/17/my-timing-is-killing-me/
You may know everything about SC, CR, advanced number properties, combinatorics or permutation, coordinate geometry, but if you fail to pay attention to timing, you will hardly get the score you want. I analyzed the last mock test and saw that my V23 was merely due to timing trouble. I spent too much time for the first 20 questions and got 5 incorrect, however, made 8 mistakes from 20-30 and another 7 from 31-41. This is definitely what made my score drop. With this in mind I registered for GMAT and took it on 4th of July. I just revised incorrect answers from the last mock test and didnt do any preparation. Just read the following similiar article http://www.manhattangmat.com/blog/index ... to-win-it/
4th of July - 680 q47 v36 (85th percentile).
Guys, please change your mindset toward GMAT and please remember as it is said in the article above you dont have to get all the answers correct, this is not the school exam to which we were so many years used.
-Must have for every GMAT StudentPowerscore CR
- you do not need anything else
For RC- daily reading is enoughE-gmat
SC online - teaches how to approach SC (recommended)
The only books are MGMAT Guides
- do diligently Number Properties, Geometry and Inequalities. I did not get any tough probability. Just one moderate combinatorics.
and Verbal Review 2nd Edition - complete them all, especially CR and SCGmatClub Tests
- very useful for those who score above Q42
Gmatclub forum- Bunuel explanations are simply amazing
Grockit - helps to create sense of timing, questions very similar to official
Above all, please never give up even if you feel defeated,frustrated, tired or hopeless, never give up. The expression I came across several times on this forum is: If could do it you will do it also
. Guys, I am a lawyer and non-native speaker, if I could do it you will definitely get the score you want. Never question your ability to tackle GMAT, your abilities are far higher.
Billion thanks to GmatClub and its members, you have been one of the most important part of my journey. No GMAT Book can be compared to you in terms of contribution to success of test takers. Thank you, Bunuel for introducing me into Gmat Math world.
Please ask anything you want to know from my experience.
Sorry for a long post, tried to somehow compensate for my inactivity on this forum.