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GMAT Roadtrip

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GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2009, 21:02
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Hey everyone.

I'm new to the GMAT, but thought I would join the community here!

I enjoyed reading everyone's GMAT experience, so I thought I would post mine as I went along.

I started studying 5/26 and so far have only put in about 8 hours.
The first thing I did was take the Diagnostic Test in the OG 11 to see where I stood.
My scores were:
Problem Solving - (15/24) Average
Data Sufficiency - (11/24) Average
Reading Comprehension - (16/17) Excellent
Critical Reasoning - (16/17) Excellent
Sentence Correction - (12/18) Above Average

I'm currently a senior in college and I was surprised how hard even the simple math questions were. I finished Calculus my freshman year and really haven't had any math other than Data Analysis and Finance since.

I think for the most part the difficulty was due to the fact that I didn't recall the vocabulary.
Also I wasn't very sure how to go about answering the Data Sufficiency questions and fell victim to a few yes/no pitfalls, where I assumed if the answer was no, then it wasn't sufficient.

All in all I'm not too disappointed with my initial performance. Reviewing my mistakes was obviously critical, and I was able to learn some of the tricks, mainly with data sufficiency. Also I had pretty much forgotten all of the ratios for geometry, like the isosceles triangle hah, which was an easy fix with a quick review.

I plan to take the GMAT late July or early August, but haven't registered yet. Also I'm shooting for a 700+ score

Looking forward to working together with everyone here!
and of course any comments/advice/questions are always welcome

cheers!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2009, 21:59
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Welcome to GMAT Club Jolt.

You sound rather mature for being a senior in college - most folks think of parties and to get out of school, not to get in. Keep it up and you will gain respect quickly around here.

What are you plans? Take GMAT and then wait a few years before an MBA or perhaps a Master's or PhD?




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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 05 Jun 2009, 11:54
Thanks! but I'm not sure I'm completely deserving, I'm still a typical college student for the most part hah

The reason I'm looking at getting right back into school is that I'm most interested in entrepreneurship and it would be great to find some business partners with similar interests.

I'm also applying to a teaching position abroad and considering deferring my MBA for a year if I'm accepted.
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 05 Jun 2009, 18:04
hey buddy, welcome to the forums! I'm in a similar situation and recently graduated in the past couple of weeks. I'm planning on taking the GMAT the end of the summer but finding it really hard to focus when studying. Haha... oh well, better get it down now than try to study for it during work. Good luck.
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 06 Jun 2009, 09:15
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FYI - it is hard to judge the performance from a paper test since

If you take a simulated computer test - any of them (all are listed here: all-gmat-cat-practice-tests-links-prices-reviews-77460.html)

Then you can use GMAT Score Estimator/Calculator to get your GMAT scores and measure your level of performance
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 15 Jun 2009, 00:54
well i just took GMATPREP tonight for the first time (12:30AM-3:30AM)

My scores:
Q - 32
V - 37
Total 580

Before taking it I had read through the Math Review in the OG the day before, which helped to refresh some of the concepts. Also I was able to keep an eye out for mistakes I had made in the Diagnostic Test that I took 2 weeks ago.

When reviewing my mistakes on the Quant section I noticed 5 VERY obvious mistakes on questions I should have easily gotten right, but I'm not sure how much that would have affected my score. Also I missed the first 6 questions. I didn't see any clear area that was to blame for the majority of my mistakes.

By the time I started the Verbal section I was very tired, but I don't think it affected my score much, mainly just forced me to reread a few times or take a break to close my eyes. On the Verbal section I didn't make many careless mistakes, but I did notice 80% of the questions I got wrong were SC. Luckily I have MGMAT SC for that.

I was aiming for a 590-600 for my first GMATPREP test, so I missed my goal by 10-20points.

I will take another GMATPREP test in 1-2weeks depending on when I can find time.
Should I take GMATPREP Test 2 or retake Test 1?

My goal for my next test will be 620.

cheers!
and good luck to the rest of you!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 15 Jun 2009, 09:22
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jolt wrote:
well i just took GMATPREP tonight for the first time (12:30AM-3:30AM)

My scores:
Q - 32
V - 37
Total 580

Before taking it I had read through the Math Review in the OG the day before, which helped to refresh some of the concepts. Also I was able to keep an eye out for mistakes I had made in the Diagnostic Test that I took 2 weeks ago.

When reviewing my mistakes on the Quant section I noticed 5 VERY obvious mistakes on questions I should have easily gotten right, but I'm not sure how much that would have affected my score. Also I missed the first 6 questions. I didn't see any clear area that was to blame for the majority of my mistakes.

By the time I started the Verbal section I was very tired, but I don't think it affected my score much, mainly just forced me to reread a few times or take a break to close my eyes. On the Verbal section I didn't make many careless mistakes, but I did notice 80% of the questions I got wrong were SC. Luckily I have MGMAT SC for that.

I was aiming for a 590-600 for my first GMATPREP test, so I missed my goal by 10-20points.

I will take another GMATPREP test in 1-2weeks depending on when I can find time.
Should I take GMATPREP Test 2 or retake Test 1?

My goal for my next test will be 620.

cheers!
and good luck to the rest of you!


Congratulations on starting your journey. Now that you've got an accurate baseline score, you should be able to identify a few key areas for improvement.

Missing the first six questions on the GMAT is very damaging to your overall score. The GMAT utilizes the first 10-15 questions in each section to determine your approximate ability. The remainder of the test is primarily used for fine tuning your score. Missing the first six questions gives the CAT a very low approximation of your ability, making it impossible for you to climb back up to a top quant score. Another way of viewing this problem is that you lose more points when you miss an easy question. By default, you start the test with a medium difficulty question. Missing the first six questions means you missed the six easiest questions you're going to see for the rest of the exam. This is far worse than missing six evenly spaced questions, or even the last six questions.

If you need to brush up on the math fundamentals, I strongly recommend Kaplan Math Workbook and MGMAT Number Properties. The combination of these two books should put you in the 43-46 range for Quant.

You should be in good hands with the MGMAT SC book. I'm currently reading it for the first time and it's helping me quite a bit.

For the sake of "saving" the GMATPrep #2, I would recommend re-taking GMATPrep #1 once you've studied a bit more. You should wait at least two weeks though to make the test worthwhile. Although I'm not a huge fan of the MGMAT CAT's, you get six for free with any book that you buy and they really are the best alternative to GMATPrep.

Good luck and welcome to GMAT Club :)
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 15 Jun 2009, 19:45
Manhattan series is the best.... worth every penny...
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 08 Jul 2009, 13:07
Yesterday I took MGMAT CAT #1

My Scores

Q - 45
V - 34
Total 650

Over the past couple weeks I studied quant and worked my way through the MGMAT Number Properties book, but surprisingly I found I did the worst on Number Properties questions when I was reviewing my results. But I felt much more confident throughout the Quant section this time around.

I wasn't surprised by my Verbal score because I still haven't had the time to start studying for it and answered only 5/15 SC questions correctly. I plan to read through MGMAT SC before my next CAT.

Overall I was very pleased with the results, my goal was a 620 for this CAT

Good luck to the rest of you fellow gmatters!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2009, 22:43
MGMAT CAT #2

My Scores

Q - 44
V - 40
Total 700

Recently I studied the Manhattan GMAT SC Guide and made it about halfway through. I also went through about 200 of MGMAT's Quant flash cards, these were really helpful to get some quick review when I didn't really feel like studying. The SC guide helped and I was able to analyze the questions more effectively and efficiently. On MGMAT 1 I missed 10/15 SC questions. On MGMAT 2 I missed only 6/15 SC questions

cheers!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 24 Jul 2009, 10:02
GMAT PREP 1 RETAKE

Q - 44
V - 41
Total 700
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 24 Jul 2009, 18:08
Great job, jolt. Your test scores are coming together! If you can increase your quant score to ~47, that should give you a little bit of slack to ensure that you stay above 700 on test day.

Good luck with the remainder of your studies!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 04 Aug 2009, 16:09
MGMAT CAT #3 (taken July 31)

Q - 42
V - 38
Total 660

Obviously it's never good to see your scores going down, especially after two 700s in a row. But what went wrong? Well, In the beginning of the quant section I was doing really well and by question 10-15 I was getting really hard questions. I felt like I was getting behind on time and tried to guess a few that I didn't know how to attack right away. Unfortunately I guessed on a 300-500lvl remainder question that was REALLY easy hah, after missing a few 700-800s in a row. When I got to the end of my questions I was getting really easy ones and as a result got the remaining questions right.

As for Verbal I'm not really sure what happened, I got two RC passages in a row which threw me off i know. and missed a couple more CR that I usually do.

Overall though I'm glad my score decreased. It motivated me to study more. I have put a lot more quality time into studying. I re-read the entire MGMAT Number Properties book, because the first time I didn't finish it and I could tell I had started to forget some of the NP that I had learned a month or more ago. I also started an error log for the first time. And retraced my CAT tests and wrote down all of the Q questions I had missed. However, I didn't log the V questions I missed, do any of you do this?

I set my GMAT date for August 12, so between now and then GMAT will comprise most of my time.

Any suggestions on what to study going into the final week before my test will be appreciated!

Thank you GMATClub for all the help and support so far!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 04 Aug 2009, 17:51
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I agree. A dip in your score (not a drastic plunge) is never a bad thing while studying. It definitely motivated me to study for the days after the test and I'm sure you'll be energized as well. Since you have 1 week to study, you should concentrate on specific sections rather than sections. I would go for SC since it is probably the easiest to improve in the shortest amount of time. You should also do many DS questions since you seem weak in that area. I would make sure to go through the error log multiple times. When you're sick of 'formal' studying, hop onto gmatclub and do some practice SCs and CRs. good luck!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 04 Aug 2009, 23:31
MGMAT CAT #4

Q - 45 77%
V - 38 85%

Total 690 91%


One thing that is frustrating is that I got almost 100% of the 300-700 level Quant questions right, but a small percentage of the (21!) 700-800 questions right. On MGMAT CAT #1, I only received (9!) 700-800 level questions and also got a Q - 45, is it better to miss some easier questions on purpose so you can assure that you answer more easier questions right???

also i only missed 4 SC questions! ....but 5 RC somehow :?

anyways, back to studying! :wink:
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 05 Aug 2009, 17:36
Study List for Final Week! :-D

(* indicates importance and will likely be reviewed first)

V
CR - Strengthen Conclusion
Analyze Arg Structure
Evaluate a Conclusion

RC - Tone *
Specific Detail *

SC - Pronouns *
Verbs *
Modifiers *
Idioms
Comparisons *
Clarity of Meaning

Q
WT - Probability *
Combinatorics *
Statistics

Algebra - Quadratic Equations
Inequalities
Variables in Choice *

Geometry - Triangles and Diagonals *
Coordinate Plane *

NP - Odds and Evens *
Divisibility and Primes

FDPs - Percents
Digits


Cheers!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2009, 11:17
jolt,

dude this ia an awesome post. your details keep me checked on my own preparation. thanks for sharing and goodluck!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2009, 13:21
first of all thanks whatthehell! glad to see im helping someone!

now for today's results.

Today I decided to wake up and take a mock GMAT, basically do everything I planned on doing the day of the real GMAT and see how my score turns out.

Woke up, showered, ate breakfast, and relaxed for a bit. Then I did a 15min work-out to make sure I was awake. I also tried not to eat any sugar or caffeine! I didn't want to crash during the test and I didn't think I would need it for the Essays anyway.

Drove to the testing center, which is conveniently <1min from my house, unfortunately I couldn't go in! haha

Came back home and started GMAT PREP #2 for the first time
This is the first time I have ever taken the entire GMAT including essays. As expected I did the essays comfortably in the allotted time at likely a 5.5-6 level. I reviewed the Official GMAT guide directions and sample answers as practice.

After the essays I was feeling great and had a boost of confidence. I ate a banana and drank half of my starbucks bottled coffee for energy! the math section is where I wanted the caffeine! In the beginning the math section was going great, I could tell I was solving questions that had been very hard for me in the past rather quickly. But by questions 20 I was getting tired and spent too long on probably 2 questions. By question 30 I could tell I was behind on time. However, I was able to focus and manage to read each question once through to gather necessary information and answered each question in 1min, with 1 guess. By the last question I had 3 min left and took my time to solve it.

Before starting the Verbal section I took a break and finished my coffee and did some stretches, but unfortunately I did not get the energy boost I received from before the math section! :( I'm thinking I might need to use an energy drink next time (RedBull) instead to ensure that extra energy boost. In any case I managed to pump myself up for about the first 7 questions, but after the first RC passage, which was short and confusing, I had run out of energy. The remainder of V questions became a grind and it was taking all of my energy to stay focused. This lasted until about question 28 or 29 where I pumped up by the realization that I was almost finished! I finally made it to the last question with 7-8 min remaining, which I probably could have used to better evaluate some RC or SC questions. But in any case I was done!

clicked through next, next, next...

My Score

Q - 47 81%
V - 41 93%
Total 710! 93%

This is probably the most ideal situation I could imagine on the actual test day!

I missed 12 Q questions, 2 of which were Geometry
and I only missed 7 V questions, 5SC and 2RC and 0CR!

Hopefully I an replicate this on the test day next week!

Cheers!
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2009, 13:45
Awesome job. You should probably focus on SC intensely for the next few days since your other areas seem very strong. Also I would recommend doing at least another full length simulation so that you build stamina for test date. Keep it up and chances are pretty good for a 700+ :-D
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Re: GMAT Roadtrip [#permalink] New post 08 Aug 2009, 15:07
Today I took another Full CAT, including essays (really hate writing essays for no reason :| hah)

during the past two days I did some review of my error log, but most of my time was spent reading through the entire MGMAT SC guide. I also put some thought into a new RC passage strategy.

GMAT PREP CAT 1
Q - 46 79%
V - 44 97%
Total - 720 95%

My quant was going well and I focused much better this time. Retaking the test over and over has really made me accustomed to the length and it seems to breeze by now, actually finished with 10 minutes left, but I missed the last 5 out of 6 questions. Ultimately missed 14 questions total. Also missed 1st question :(

Verbal I was doing great, even though I missed the first question and knew it right after hitting next. I missed 4 total questions, all 4 SC, which is 1 better then before I read the entire SC guide! hah

But more importantly I again missed 0CR and for the first time 0RC. I attribute the 0RC score to my new strategy. I found that I was consistently having between 5-10 minutes to spare at the end of verbal and I was able to read even a long passage in 2 min or less, but then would have to refer to the passage again for each question. In my new strategy I read through the passage gathering as many facts as I can, then look at the first question. If the answer is obvious I answer it and move on, if not, I reread the ENTIRE passage again. and then answer the first question. This considerably cuts down the amount of time I spend answering each question because by the second read I am VERY familiar with the passage. If the first question is easy, I wait until seeing the second question before a second read through. I think using this method I was still able to finish each passage in an equal or shorter amount of time than referring to the passage for each question, in fact, it worked so well that I started reading some of the longer CR passages twice before looking at the answer choices to confirm I thoroughly knew what the CR passage was about. with 4 verbal questions left I still had 15 minutes to spare and was able to take my time on the last 4 questions and finished with 6-7 minutes left after spending 4 minutes on the last SC, which I missed :?

But the major point that I found was I could cut substantial time off of each question by reading the passage twice.... but why? When I was VERY familiar with the passage I didn't have to keep referring to the passage when deciding between two likely answers; furthermore, if I ever did need to refer back to a passage I knew exactly where to look!

I recommend those of you having trouble with accuracy on RC and CR, especially native speakers, to try this strategy

Now if only I can get a little better with SC! :-D

Cheers!
Re: GMAT Roadtrip   [#permalink] 08 Aug 2009, 15:07
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