I finally managed to score six-hundred-something.
Damn, what a test.
Prep (successful turn):
- Manhattan GMAT
(8 set book, 4th edition): ALL OF THEM
- Powerscore: SC and CR (entire books)
RC (not so useful, but ok)
- GMATPREp: none
- Official Guide 12th
edition: about 40 exercises of each session
I also used a material from a friend who is GMAT instructor, but he is from my country, so I don't think it would interest anybody.
Two days before the test:
- Study as hard as the day before. At least 8 hours (I was out of office from work).
- Healthy food and exercises
One day before the test:
I got so nervous about the test. I chose some exercises from Official Guide and made most of them right. So I though: hey, I am not bad at that... Then I got more confident againTHE BIG DAY
I woke up at least two times during the night, I almost had a heart attack, lol. I was so anxious.
I managed to sleep. I thought: "it's just a test".
Then, 6:40 am the alarm finally woke me up and I started a normal day: put clothes, breakfast, coffee...
Got to the test center, made the admissions bureaucracy, ate my snack and let's go.AWA/Int reasoning
I did not study AT ALL neither AWA nor Integrated Reasoning. Not that I don't care, but I didn't have the time for them. AWA I had done at least four times before (the other tests), so I knew what to expect. Integrated Reasoning I had absolutely no idea what to expect and honestly I don't care. I did tried to answer correctly, but I didn't score high.
Break, took a deep breath, drank water and ate my snack. I tried to remember the math basics as well as the timing I had planned for myself. Quick bathroom and let's go.\Quantitative session
It started with pretty easy problems. It was on the mid of the test when things started to become worse. Mixed problems. Combinatorics with geometry... Indirect questions... WHAT??? what are they asking??? Not only complicated problems, but also complicated questions themselves. I had even to think about what they were asking me to do. But I realized that was a good signal. And then a not so good signal: the questions became a bit easier. Well, I realized then I had just to do my job and that's it.
Also, it was as warm as hell. I had had the same problem one time before, I did complain to GMAC, but they said "it was on an appropriate temperature". It was at least 28 Celsius (I am pretty sure of that because I have a thermometer on my car and I know when it's warm, when it's not). Then I learned: come in several layers of clothes. I had a shirt, t-shirt, sweater... I actually left the t-shirt on my locker so I had only two layers. But it was so warm that I opened some (at least 3) buttons of my shirt. Lol!
Ok, done the Quant session and started my worst nightmare: VERBAL SESSION
. The previous times I had taken, I got like 11V, 17V ... that is, very low verbal scores.
I tried to remember what were the basics before the test. Then I tried to remember what timing I had planned for this session too.
Ok, easy CR question,... then easy SC question... then a H-U-G-E passage of RC. I thought: what a monster... I did my best.
By the 10 last minutes I realized I was doing some pretty easy questions... that sounded an alarm but I tried to to my job anyway.
Then i had to answer whether I wanted to report my scores... oh heavens... after all that, should I cancel my scores?Finals
No, never give it up. I said YES, GIMME MY GODDAMN SCORE!
To be honest, from my previous experiences and from my level of stress, I was expecting 590-610. But then... 680. What???????? SIX HUNDRED EIGHTY? I read again and again. Percentile: 85
I felt like screaming but I remembered other people were doing their tests, so I respected them.
It's not a perfect score, I know, but for a person who was trapped in the 480-560 range... that's a score to be proud of...
Ok, just to debrief my previous experiences, I had scored two 480, one 550 and two 560 (I guess). All of them between 2009 and 2010. I started a M.Sc. course and I thought: "You GMAT, wait for my degree and we'll meet again". 30 months later, I did as promised: started from the basics. Everything was new for me, even the Reading Comprehension passages I had already read at another time.