Before I list my preparation strategy I would like to give some background. This is not some vanity project. Really!! When I was reading people's strategies I always wanted to know their background. Because then I could evaluate how relevant their strategies were to me.
I have a engineering background from India. So was quite comfortable with Quant concepts to start with. I was (still am) almost completely blind to formal rules of grammar. But had enough exposure to english to have a intuitive feel of what is right. Not that it takes you too far in GMAT SC.
BTW there was no grand strategy in the order in which I did things. I got all my books from the library. So I worked on what was available at any point of time, except for the last week which was planned in advance.
1. Couple of online diagnostic tests
2. Practice exercises in PowerPrep
3. Brush up theory with ETS 9th edition
4. ETS 9th edition exercises
5. Brush up theory with Kaplan
6. Exercises in Kaplan
7. Exercises in Kaplan
8. Skim through test taking strategies in Princeton Review
9. Princeton Review
10. Last week
- ETS 10th edition last 100-150 Qs. from each section
- GMAT 800
exercises. I tried to go through the reasoning for all of them. But after a while I gave up on the SC. It was too much information for me.
Every practice test (whether full or section) I gave, I made it a point to keep track of the mistakes I was making. This helped me in identifying my weak areas (e.g. number properties in Quant, inferences in RC) and taking steps to correct them.
I also kept track of the qs. where I was making 50-50 guesses along with the guesses. I read up the explanations for these qs., even if I got them right. Doing this was helpful in identifying those subtle differences (e.g. should vs shall in SC).
Since I am not an early morning person and the test was at 8:00 AM, in the last week I gave a couple of full length tests at 8:00 AM.
As for time required, I started in the last week of January. Had to take one week off in the middle as I fell sick. So it took about 6-7 weeks. Except for the last week, there wasn't too much work at the office. So I could study a bit at office. So except for the last 10 days it was a pretty leisurely schedule.
Hope this helps. Thanks again for all the wishes.