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Getting from a 700 to a 760 in 40 days, please advise

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Getting from a 700 to a 760 in 40 days, please advise [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2012, 14:57
Hi everyone. I just scheduled my GMAT exam for the end of March. My target score is above 750.

Over the last few months I've been studying Quant (my weaker area) using MGMAT's various math subject books, MGMAT Online Question Banks, the OG Guide, and OG Quant. I've improved my math skills (initially very poor) greatly. I've studied some Verbal as well (again using MGMAT's books), but Verbal comes more naturally to me.

My practice tests thus far breakdown like this...

1) 11/14/11 - GMATPrep - Practice Test #1 - Timed - 690, Q47 V36
2) 12/19/11 - ManhattanGMAT - CAT Exam #2 - Timed - 630, Q37 V38
3) 1/11/12 - Manhattan GMAT - CAT Exam #3 - Timed - 660, Q39 V41
4) 1/25/12 - Manhattan GMAT - CAT Exam #4 - Timed - 700, Q44, V40

I recently purchased MGMAT's Advanced Quant book and plan on going through it. As I get into the final stretch here I wanted to ask you all for feedback and tips and raising my score to a 750 from 700.

Thanks in advance!
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Re: Getting from a 700 to a 760 in 40 days, please advise [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2012, 16:37
Just remember, verbal is really going to help drive your score! A V40 is great, but a V50 would easily push your score over 750 with even a decent quant. So if you're shooting for a 750+ (99th percentile) you are really going to have to kill both sections. Here's a distribution chart to show you where you'll have to get: gmat-score-calculator-83937.html?sid=5106c01a8317b0d96282b0e71935279d#p629199

It get's exponentially harder to increase your score as you push into higher ranges. For example, it make take just as much studying to increase your score from a 600 to a 700 as it does to increase from a 700 to a 740. Once you get into these higher rangers you really have to master EVERYTHING. It looks like you are doing well, but you're goin to have to really buckle down, and master the topics and question types to start pushing into this 700+ range. I would recommend spending significant free time, and continue doing what you're doing as it looks to be working well for you... 40 days is an eternity in GMAT study time if you really dedicate a lot of time during those 40 days to your studies.

Good luck!
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Re: Getting from a 700 to a 760 in 40 days, please advise [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2012, 19:16
I would agree with GMATLA. You seem to be improving the quant very well. I want to break the 730 mark and my goal is to first master the quant section, such that I can routinely get 47+, and then spend the rest of my studying focusing on the Verbal. I feel like I'll get more out of my time i by studying this way.

Wishing you the best
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Re: Getting from a 700 to a 760 in 40 days, please advise [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2012, 11:54
GMATLA wrote:
Just remember, verbal is really going to help drive your score! A V40 is great, but a V50 would easily push your score over 750 with even a decent quant. So if you're shooting for a 750+ (99th percentile) you are really going to have to kill both sections. Here's a distribution chart to show you where you'll have to get:

It get's exponentially harder to increase your score as you push into higher ranges. For example, it make take just as much studying to increase your score from a 600 to a 700 as it does to increase from a 700 to a 740. Once you get into these higher rangers you really have to master EVERYTHING. It looks like you are doing well, but you're goin to have to really buckle down, and master the topics and question types to start pushing into this 700+ range. I would recommend spending significant free time, and continue doing what you're doing as it looks to be working well for you... 40 days is an eternity in GMAT study time if you really dedicate a lot of time during those 40 days to your studies.

Good luck!


Thanks for your thoughtful feedback and encouragement. I tend to forget that bringing up my verbal could significantly help my score.
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Re: Getting from a 700 to a 760 in 40 days, please advise [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2012, 12:10
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Here are my tips for improving Quant. I caveat the following by saying that this advice is directed towards someone who is already scoring in the mid-40s in Quant, and may not be generally applicable to people just starting their GMAT studying or who are struggling to reach the mid-40s in Quant.

1. Study deep, not wide: many study materials include a wide range of subjects that you're unlikely to see on the actual GMAT. For example, many materials have whole chapters on combinatorics and advanced probability questions, but you're unlikely to see more than one of those questions on test day. I got a Q49 and saw one such question, and it was an easy coin-flip question, not one of the hard ones. However, you are likely to see a very large number of number properties and word translation problems. Therefore, your study time is best spent mastering number properties (especially exponents/roots, positive/negative, odds/evens questions) and word translations (especially converting tough WT problems into algebraic equations).

2. Buy the GMAT Club exams: I credit these exams from pushing my score from the Q46 I kept getting on practice exams to the Q49 I got on test day. These tests are really hard, but they are a great way to study complex problems, as well as pick up useful tricks to crack tough problems on test day and/or save time on harder problems. The downside is that they are not adaptive like MGMAT CATs. On the other hand, nearly every question is already 700+ difficulty level, so in a sense, they are "pre-adapted" for very high scorers, if that makese sense.

All that said, sounds like you're a native English speaker, so I would also focus on improving your Verbal score. As others have mentioned, a 1 point improvement in your Verbal score is worth more points on your overall GMAT score than a 1 point improvement in your Quant score. Frankly, if you want a 760, you'll need to improve your Verbal score. A V40 (your highest score to date) isn't high enough for a 760, especially considering you are unlikely to improve to Q51 caliber in 40 days (no offense at all - Q51 is reserved for true quant geniuses!). So devote some time to Verbal as well. Good resources include MGMAT SC and CR guides (RC is not very good), Kaplan GMAT 800 book, and others you'll find mentioned repeatedly on this board.

Finally, remember that a 760 is barely distinguishable from a 730 at most schools. Assuming you have a decent undergrad GPA, no school will care whether you have a 730 or a 760, provided your score is sufficiently balanced between Q and V.

Good luck!
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Re: Getting from a 700 to a 760 in 40 days, please advise [#permalink] New post 28 Feb 2012, 23:28
DagwoodDeluxe wrote:
...you're unlikely to see more than one of those questions on test day. I got a Q49 and saw one such question, and it was an easy coin-flip question, not one of the hard ones. However, you are likely to see a very large number of number properties and word translation problems. Therefore, your study time is best spent mastering number properties (especially exponents/roots, positive/negative, odds/evens questions) and word translations (especially converting tough WT problems into algebraic equations).

...As others have mentioned, a 1 point improvement in your Verbal score is worth more points on your overall GMAT score than a 1 point improvement in your Quant score. Frankly, if you want a 760, you'll need to improve your Verbal score. A V40 (your highest score to date) isn't high enough for a 760, especially considering you are unlikely to improve to Q51 caliber in 40 days...


Really, really good advice! Exactly what I need right now!
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Re: Getting from a 700 to a 760 in 40 days, please advise [#permalink] New post 29 Feb 2012, 04:50
socalentrepreneur wrote:
... As I get into the final stretch here I wanted to ask you all for feedback and tips and raising my score to a 750 from 700.

Thanks in advance!


Hey socal, let me in on your strategy on getting from 700 to 750. I am with you on this one. Need to support each other buddy! I need to get up from 710 to 760 in a few weeks too! Halp!!!
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Re: Getting from a 700 to a 760 in 40 days, please advise   [#permalink] 29 Feb 2012, 04:50
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