I am new to this club. Would like to share my GMAT experience, though old. I had appeared for my GMAT more than 5 years back and that gives me a reason to reappear as scores older than 5 years are not valid.
I had taken the test twice. After having studied for 9 months, my first score was 480!
I then enrolled in GMAT classes and it boost my score to a 640 in three months. After I joined classes, I learned that GMAT was not about being a math/verbal genius, but about knowing the short-cuts to get to the right answer. Hence, i feel it is important to have a source that would expose you to the "GMAT methods" of solving a problem or you simply take classroom/online training.
I remember what had helped me most was re-doing the questions I got wrong the first time during the practice sessions. I particularly write this as I am now preparing for the final test and I just took one of the practice tests twice. I got an equal number of questions wrong both times. Only to my dismay, the ones wrong the 2nd time are different from the ones wrong the first time. This reflects that I probably am not following one pattern/strategic method to solving problems. This could be dangerous on the test day. Point: It is very important that you analyze your answers and try to figure out why a particular answer is RIGHT AS WELL AS WRONG. Don't just re-do the questions, (answers of which) you got wrong. I remember following this strategy before my 2nd attempt.
The first time I used Barrons, Princeton, Kaplan
(name the brand and I owned that book) study material. This is like digging your own grave!! 2nd time I used ONLY Kaplan
, which was very helpful. OG (9th ed then) is a must. I didn't know of gmat club then.
Practice Tests must be taken!! Take as many as possible. 1st attempt - I took 2. 2nd attempt I took 12. Made me more confident. Take them more than once if you have the time - you will be surprised at the results of the same test taken twice!!
Timing of the test: You will know best when you are prepared. Also, the time of the day is important. The first time I chose 8am. I realized that I do not perform my best in the mornings and hence, the 2nd time I chose 1pm. It helped. I did twenty mins of math problems in the morning that had my brain started before the test.
I did not use MGMAT last time, but I think their SC is the best from all the other study materials I have used. For those outside the US, you can order a soft copy from their website.
All those who have got a low score - don't worry!! Just try to get the right source of materials that will help you prepare using the right strategy. I will be around, as I have just started to prepare. Feel free to shoot any questions that you may have.