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Huge drop in practices to real test...twice!

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Huge drop in practices to real test...twice! [#permalink] New post 30 Dec 2012, 07:49
Hi everyone,

I'm a 24 year old Canadian, with 3 years of management experience and a degree from the University of Western Ontario. I'm looking at getting in and starting MBA programs for fall 2013. I started studying for the GMAT in July with the official gmat guide and Kaplan math guide and wrote for the first time in November. I scored a 430. Pretty brutal, but I thought it was just a bad day and moved on from it and booked a re-test for Dec 27.

Over the next 6 weeks I amped up the studying and was doing well enough. I did the practice tests from the GMAC website and scored 560 on one and 590 on the other. For the schools I'm looking at going to in Canada (Ryerson, Ottawa, Dalhousie) a score of 550-600 would make me competitive enough to have a shot at getting in so I was happy with these practices and ready to take the test.

I went in and scored a 410! I didn't feel nervous or stressed and I have no idea what happened. I know there might be a bit of a drop from practice tests, but to drop that much? I'm honestly at a loss and not sure why there is such a huge gap from my prep and my actual scores. Does anyone have any insight or suggestions? It's getting a bit late to apply now as I'm sure first round spots are starting to get filled and I'm not sure how to get my actual scores up to 550-600, or if its even worth a 3rd shot if for some reason I can't translate practice to the real test.
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Re: Huge drop in practices to real test...twice! [#permalink] New post 31 Dec 2012, 01:20
I would suggest you to take one last shot as there is a huge difference between your prep scores and your original scores.

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Re: Huge drop in practices to real test...twice! [#permalink] New post 01 Jan 2013, 23:02
You said that you didn't feel stressed on your second attempt, so at least we can rule out "test day anxiety" playing the spoilsport. Given the fact that you prepared for almost 6 months yet you were unable to do well on both the attempts shows the way you studied probably wasn't right. Can you provide the sectional split of your GMAT scores-i.e. your Verbal and Quant scores-on both the attempts? If you provide could other details such as how many practice tests did you take in all, did you analyze those tests well enough, how much were you in command of each three areas of Verbal etc, we could help you in figuring out what you could do to score better . The last thing you want to do right now is prepare again the same way because chances are good that you may end up getting the same score.
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Re: Huge drop in practices to real test...twice! [#permalink] New post 15 Jan 2013, 10:49
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It's a bit late for r1/r2 - you would have to apply r3. I would recommend a retake - and perhaps apply next year. At age 24, you'd be at the younger end. Another year of work experience as well as another GMAT attempt would be recommended.
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Re: Huge drop in practices to real test...twice!   [#permalink] 15 Jan 2013, 10:49
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