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FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE

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FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 22 Jul 2008, 19:03
After 2 weeks of review (Princeton Review only) I took the online CATs by PR and scored PR1-510 (Q36, V30) and PR2-550 (Q35, V30)!! WTF! I thought PR CATs are supposed to be the easiest! I read all the success stories and planned on studying prep books in increasing order of difficulty == (PR, OG-11 then Kaplan). I've always neglected Verbal portions of all standardized tests I've taken but I've always been good in math all my life, have scored 98th percentile in PCAT-Math two yrs ago and am having no trouble with the time limit!In fact I finished the quant with at least 10 minutes left. Verbal, I JUST finished on time on both PR1 and PR2. I am really freaking out and am wondering if I should take one of the prep classes by MGMAT or Kaplan. I honestly don't even have enough time/cash flow to take one of these classes cuz I have to take the test in 4-5 weeks max!! :( Am I doing something wrong? I have made a few silly mistakes and rushed through some problems maybe but sure don't think I deserve a 510!!!

PLEASE ADVISE!!!! I'm open to any suggestions from you GMAT gurus
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 22 Jul 2008, 19:26
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If you want to be in the top 10%, then you need to study like someone in the top 10%. You almost always get what you put in. Focusing on the official material appears to be what I've heard repeatedly on these boards so maybe stay away from PR?

Best of luck.
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 22 Jul 2008, 20:07
I agree. Don't worry about your initial scores. Just put in the most study time that you can and get a better feel for the questions. You should do fine.
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 22 Jul 2008, 20:11
oh, and look into manhattan gmat guide books.
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 23 Jul 2008, 05:00
I believe my highest PR CAT was a 630....I was scoring up to 740 on the GMATPrep and got a 700 on the real thing. Dont freak out :-D
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 23 Jul 2008, 05:24
ha your freaking out after 2 weeks! I think that is a little too early. Unless you are a super genius you are not going to be hitting that 700+ score after 2 weeks. You have to practice a lot and learn a lot of the nuances of the test. The 5-6 week mark may be a little too soon as well, but if you are willing to put in hours everyday and full weekends it may be possible. This test is a test of endurance , and as the above poster stated, you get what you put into it.
Do you really want to go to a top business school? Then work your butt off studying. You will get rewarded. I think this test more than any humbles a lot of smart people at first. But if you are smart, you will get through it.
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 23 Jul 2008, 15:48
thanks to all of you for putting some life back into me :) back to my mission then...
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 23 Jul 2008, 16:19
I didn't notice any improvement to my practice scores for at least 3 weeks.

The first few weeks are spent familiarizing yourself with the format and planning time management.

It's kind of like when Tiger Woods re-did his golf swing. He practically sucked for an entire season (sucked relative to tiger woods).
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 24 Jul 2008, 07:54
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8-)

As everyone else has suggested, don't freak out just yet mate...
I've been working on tackling this beast for a while... on and off...
First time I took the test last year, I scored a 570 (Q30, V37).
Have taken a prep course at the local community college, and found it to be useless (relative to the level of information on this board).

Keep that in mind, this board, and the people who are on here, are more valuable (in my mind) than any prep course. Lots of folks have done very well through pure hard work, nothing more.

I would suggest dropping Princeton Review entirely. When I started, I had a similar mindset to yourself...Start with PR, then work my way into Kaplan and the OG.. However, I was finding errors in the simplest problems with PR... Errors in their solutions as well.. To start with, do the OG inside and out. Do it twice if you can. Take full length official GMATPreps (and yes, do the writing portion before you begin). This test is not very hard conceptually. It's HS algebra, geometry, word problems, etc... However, it is tricky... and it is a test of mental stamina.. If you did well previously, then your conceptual base should be strong.. You just need to shore up your stamina, and watch out for tricks... And there's not better book to spot GMAT traps than the OG.. spend some quality time with it, you'll see what I mean after a while..

Hope it helps mate... Keep ya head up...
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 24 Jul 2008, 08:09
I need to start working on my testing stamina. Are there tests that are close to the real one that I can work on every week. I'm trying to do a test on Sats after spending the week going over material. I have 8 weeks before R1 and in cram mode. ACK!
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 24 Jul 2008, 09:20
AK79 wrote:
8-)

As everyone else has suggested, don't freak out just yet mate...
I've been working on tackling this beast for a while... on and off...
First time I took the test last year, I scored a 570 (Q30, V37).
Have taken a prep course at the local community college, and found it to be useless (relative to the level of information on this board).

Keep that in mind, this board, and the people who are on here, are more valuable (in my mind) than any prep course. Lots of folks have done very well through pure hard work, nothing more.

I would suggest dropping Princeton Review entirely. When I started, I had a similar mindset to yourself...Start with PR, then work my way into Kaplan and the OG.. However, I was finding errors in the simplest problems with PR... Errors in their solutions as well.. To start with, do the OG inside and out. Do it twice if you can. Take full length official GMATPreps (and yes, do the writing portion before you begin). This test is not very hard conceptually. It's HS algebra, geometry, word problems, etc... However, it is tricky... and it is a test of mental stamina.. If you did well previously, then your conceptual base should be strong.. You just need to shore up your stamina, and watch out for tricks... And there's not better book to spot GMAT traps than the OG.. spend some quality time with it, you'll see what I mean after a while..

Hope it helps mate... Keep ya head up...



AK - thank you for such good advice. I too was planning on doing PR - then Kaplan Premier then MGMAT / OG materials, but after seeing the mistakes in PR, I decided to stop there. I have not even touched the Kaplan Premier book yet. Starting today, I'm going to focus on the MGMAT books for the first couple of weeks and then start with the official material.

I am taking the test mid september so I hope I have enough time to focus on the official stuff.
- tsd
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 24 Jul 2008, 10:33
haidzz wrote:
After 2 weeks of review (Princeton Review only) I took the online CATs by PR and scored PR1-510 (Q36, V30) and PR2-550 (Q35, V30)!! WTF! I thought PR CATs are supposed to be the easiest! I read all the success stories and planned on studying prep books in increasing order of difficulty == (PR, OG-11 then Kaplan). I've always neglected Verbal portions of all standardized tests I've taken but I've always been good in math all my life, have scored 98th percentile in PCAT-Math two yrs ago and am having no trouble with the time limit!In fact I finished the quant with at least 10 minutes left. Verbal, I JUST finished on time on both PR1 and PR2. I am really freaking out and am wondering if I should take one of the prep classes by MGMAT or Kaplan. I honestly don't even have enough time/cash flow to take one of these classes cuz I have to take the test in 4-5 weeks max!! :( Am I doing something wrong? I have made a few silly mistakes and rushed through some problems maybe but sure don't think I deserve a 510!!!

PLEASE ADVISE!!!! I'm open to any suggestions from you GMAT gurus


First of all Relax!!! You are doing fine. You'll see 10s of stories on this forum about people who have studied for months without getting the desired score.Iam sure all these people are smart and hard working. Most of them realised they were lacking the basics or had timing issues. They worked on their basics , practised dayin day out and got awesome scores on the actual test.So dont be harsh on yourself. Do the following and Iam sure you'll see improvement.
1. Revise Quant and verbal concepts.
2. Analyse your strong and weak areas
3. Make a study plan to cover the following material
- OG
- 1000 SC/CR/RC
- Sets
4. Keep an error log of every question you get wrong. Go through the error log atleast once a week
5. Meditate if you feel stressed out and always think positive.If you dont believe in yourself you will not ace the exam.

You dont need additional prep courses. There is enough material on Gmatcub .If SC is your weak are then I recommend you buy the Manhattan SC book for SC.
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 26 Jul 2008, 08:58
TimeSquareDesi wrote:

AK - thank you for such good advice. I too was planning on doing PR - then Kaplan Premier then MGMAT / OG materials, but after seeing the mistakes in PR, I decided to stop there. I have not even touched the Kaplan Premier book yet. Starting today, I'm going to focus on the MGMAT books for the first couple of weeks and then start with the official material.

I am taking the test mid september so I hope I have enough time to focus on the official stuff.
- tsd


Hey TimeSquareDesi,

No worries yaar :) I think that's a v. good plan..
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 27 Jul 2008, 13:07
I just started doing the OG and I can tell the difference in the type of question I saw in PR or even Kaplan. I am going to focus on OG now. Thanks everyone!!
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 30 Jul 2008, 18:43
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You don't need to be very smart to do well on the GMAT. You need two things: hard-work, and perseverance. You need the former and the later. I bet that most people of average intelligence, like me, give up because they lack perseverance, even though they worked really hard.

Look, over the past 3 days, I started taking the practice tests. I started with the Kaplan tests from the Premier Program. I got a 540 on both of them. I was about ready to go kill myself out of despair and frustration. Today I took one of the GMATPrep exams and got a 630. That's a 90 point difference in one day.

Now, I find it very hard to believe the explanation was that I simply had a good day, or that I had very bad days when I took the Kaplan tests. I concede that the explanation may lie in that in part. But, a 90 point jump cannot be solely attributed to a good day or a bad day. That's BS.

What I think, is that Kaplan's tests were harder. They were for me, I don't know about anyone else, but I really struggled with those tests. That's just me. When I took the more "official" GMATPrep test (which is made by the people who make the real thing), I found it MUCH easier. Especially the verbal section.

So, as far as practice tests go, ESP. the Kaplan ones, you should not put too much stock in them. Just keep studying harder than the next guy. Keep taking the tests, keep doing the books and re-doing them and re-doing them. It's 10:40 pm here, I have work tomorrow, I just finished a test, and I'm going to hit the books when I sign off here. You gotta work harder than anyone else. That's the only way to get what you really want (unless you're one of these A**hole geniuses that "decidses" to take the GMAT on a whim tomorrow and gets a 750...they had it handed to them at birth...the rest of us have to earn it).

Like Randy Pausch said (the Carnegie Mellon Professor who just died from cancer), they put brick walls up to keep the people who don't want it badly enough out. You gotta want it more than the other guy. If you are of at least average or moderate intelligence, you can beat the GMAT with sheer, insane, obsessive, brutal hard-work and perseverance.
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Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE [#permalink] New post 30 Jul 2008, 19:42
aspirando wrote:
Like Randy Pausch said (the Carnegie Mellon Professor who just died from cancer), they put brick walls up to keep the people who don't want it badly enough out. You gotta want it more than the other guy. If you are of at least average or moderate intelligence, you can beat the GMAT with sheer, insane, obsessive, brutal hard-work and perseverance.



Excellent quote and excellent 1st post. Welcome to the board.
- tsd
Re: FRUSTRATED AND FREAKING OUT!! NEED GUIDANCE   [#permalink] 30 Jul 2008, 19:42
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