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I don't know what to do anymore.. Everytime I try to take a step I get pushed back.. I have had a long string of bad luck and I was hoping with the GMAT, this wouldnt just be another bad-luck-experience on my list but I was wrong.. No matter how hard I study.. I keep on making the same mistakes over and over again.. I think my Math basics just suck and I really try to study as hard as I can but it's just not working.. I made all the OG questions according to the Manhattan 5 series guide and everytime I get around 65-73% right of all the questions listed for 1 guide.. I need a higher score.. I havent takin any mock test yet because I feel that, since my basics are so ^@%#$%, it probably is just a waste of those test and I dont have any other test available to me.. Do you have any tips how I can step my game up in 4-5 weeks?

It sounds like you're not learning from your mistakes.

You should be thoroughly reviewing, at the least, all the problems you get wrong.

Evaluate why you got it wrong, did you... a) not read the question properly? b) not understand the math concepts it tests? c) mess up calculations during the process of solving it?

If you're finding a lot of missed questions fall under category (a), practice doing problems while being much more pro-active in reading the question. As you're reading the problem, identify any information or implications provided, then when you finish reading the problem, review this. It might sound like a lot to do while taking the test, but at most it should take a couple extra seconds.

Often the easiest 'reading the problem mistakes' (for me at least) tend to be: i) assuming the variables are integers, when in reality that was never stated in the problem ii) assuming the variables are positive, when in reality that was never stated in the problem iii) in problems involving sequences, missing the keyboard 'unique' or 'consecutive' which both have serious implications regarding the solution.

The phrasing of GMAT questions is VERY deliberate. If a question does not say that a variable is an integer, you better believe that the answer will DEPEND on that the variable is not an integer. If a question says that a sequence is of consecutive positive integers, you can be sure that the solution will depend on the numbers in the sequence being consecutive AND positive.

Basically if you fail to account for ANY piece of information that was given in the prompt, you'll probably get the question wrong.

If you're finding that questions you're missing are falling under category (b), then it's very simple, learn the concepts There's really not much excuse for missing two questions that test the same concept because you dont know the concept. Because after you missed the first one, you should have gone and learned the concept.

I exaggerate, but really, category (b) is the easiest problem to fix, because you know what you missed, you know the concept it's testing, so now you just need to go learn the concept.

If you're missing problems that fall into category (c), there are a number of solutions. First, I would say try and do less steps in your head. If you're dealing with complicated equations, write them out, do the manipulations step by step on paper, instead of multiple steps in your head. This is the easiest way to reduce this type of error.

**Disclaimer: I'm not a GMAT expert by any stretch of the imagination, just a fellow test-taker offering my opinions.

This was sooo helpful, thank you so much for replying! I will definately write this down and get to work.. Most of the times I think its a combination of all the three categories you wrote.. And I have a certain math fobia I guess, whenever I see a question I get stressed upfront without acutally having read the question in the first place.. I am very good in verbal and reading comprehension etc but when it comes to math verbally disguised, my comprehension skills just abandon me.. Also, some questions seem so easy and then I get my hopes up and when I try to take it to another level, I get all the questions wrong and I end up feeling like stupid and demotivated.. I also get confused easily cuz I get the easy questions right and I always thought that that was suppose to test if you know your basics, but then why can't I get the harder questions right?

It's also important to remember that the GMAT is in large part a psychological battle. It is designed to push you to your breaking point. Keep this in mind, and don't get overly discouraged when you get a problem wrong. Those who do well are those who can keep a cool head throughout the test.

l0rrie, I have similar problems. Just message me! I hope to complete my GMAT in december and my target is a score of 760! My dream programs average is 730... My problem is that I will work in banking 90 hours a week for the next three month, so that I do not have much time. BLA

I feel the gmat is more about the concepts than the number of questions you practise. If you have done your basics from the Mgmat books then I suggest you take a MGMAT(one of the 6 with the books) or GMATFocus test (if u have extra cash to spend). Taking a test will let you know the areas you need to focus at. Of the 25% that you get incorrect it could be that there are only 2 or 3 concepts that you are weak at. Just work on those. The 80-20 principle : 80% of the increase in your score will come from 20% of the concepts.
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--- Jimmy

Life`s battles dont always go, To the stronger or faster man; But sooner or later the man who wins, Is the man who THINKS HE CAN .

KUDOS me if you feel my contribution has helped you.

Thanks for replying so kindly.. I took some test because they were available these few days on the gmatclub.. And I must say, I got totally hammered.. I'm so ashamed that I won't even mention my score.. I notice that time is definately my issue.. I take 5 minutes lol instead of the 2 assigned per question.. Also.. Work, rates, ratio's, and the number properties are sooooooooooooo weak.. Also certain coordinate plane things.. Don't know what to do anymore.. Everything seemed oke with OG (though I did the question without a time limit) and even questions in Manhattan guides went well but this is just a disaster.. I have max 4 weeks till my GMAT and I feel like crying .. This is SOOO horrible.. I need at least 670 - 700 up.. Right now I think I'm mid 400 if I"M lucky and that's not even with a time limit that's with taking all the time in the world on questions..

Well, the the program is admitting students on a rolling basis and right now 50% of the capacity is already filled.. If I want to start in september, I have to take the GMAT asap

I contacted the admission office and they said that 50% is already full.. I have to take the GMAT asap or else if the capacity is reached, I cannot apply anymore.. Also minimum score is 670.. Right now Im 600 or something..

First of all, try do focus on the basics. Look at the OG and figure out if there are repeating basics, which you do not understand. Go actively through MGMAT meaning make notes and summaries for each chapter. That will take you a while. RC and CR does not require this technique, but SC and the quant part do! Even if you do not memorize everything right away, it should help you to get a big chunk. At least, this technique does help me to learn the tons of materials required by my study program ...

Thanksss... I have read manhattan guides from front to back and over and over again.. Made notes and everything.. OG was going oke but wasn't really working with time.. Butttt, after taking gmatclubtest WITH TIME, i got completley hammered.. I think I have to start at the basics indeed.. The questions on number properties for example we're totally nervewrecking to me.. I had everyone of them wrong (apart from the easier ones).. I think I know where my weakness is.. It's time, number properties, ratios/percentages and coordinate plane.. Most of all time it is.. I just don't know where to start and what to do since I only have max 4 weeks left

Can you please tell us your splits? What are you at for Quant and what are you at for Verbal? I think finding your weaknesses and tackling it is a very good strategy.

Also if it is of some comfort to you, the gmatclub tests are designed for those aiming 700+ and surely you should try those but I think you should wait until you have mastered all of the math concepts such as probability and combination, inequalities, rate problems, etc. I am in a similar boat as you but I've got 3 months to prep and I started about 8 days ago. You can see my blog and check out the error log I use. I think its crucial for everyone who is aiming 650+ to use error logs. It helps you find your weaknesses and allows you to put more emphasis on them.

Also, you said you are scoring around 600? Are you taking the same gmat prep test over and over again? They have repeated questions..if you remember the answers to some questions that reappear in your prep, your score may be a bit skewed.
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Thanks for your reply.. Noooo I wishhhhhhh i was scoring around 600.. I'd be so happy then.. Verbal is going fantastic, that has never been a problem but quant is like a nightmare.. Im around 450 or something, I need at least 650.. I have around 4-5 weeks max I think.. It's sooo stressful.. However, without actually working within the 2 minute timeframe I would get most medium questons on OG right.. But I guess that doesnt mean anything

Whats your split Q 30? V 30? I think you can achieve around 650 but you have to spend long hours with the books, at least 6 hours a day, 6 days a week on average. you could do 4 hours on week days and 8 hours on saturday, 8 hours on sunday but you need to be really determined and motivated. Also, you need to just practice, practice and practice because I think you can do some of the math questions but you are not able to do it due to time constraint.

What I suggest is: 1) Learn the concept. Go through all MGMAT math guides and the og listed problems they have and really try to understand the reasoning behind each problem and technique. Go above and beyond, keep practicing and practicing, it will eventually sink in. 2) Practice!! Your time issue is very serious and the only way to improve that is by practicing. If you want to get to mid 600's you need to be able to do quick calculations in your head very fast. For example:

60% of 72. Its 7.2 * 6 = 43.2. You need to be able to come up with such answers in matter of 5-8 seconds.

3) Don't stress. Usually it takes people more than 2 months to prep for gmat but I've seen people who get highly motivated and pull it off in 30-45 days. But really, your best interest would be to hit the books as it was a full time job, maybe even pull overtime!
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Thanks so much for your reply and suggestions.. Right now Im studying full time for the gmat.. 8-10 hours a day.. I feel like i'm getting nowhere.. I see no progress.. I have all the MGMAT books, read them from front to back.. Made notes and everything.. I just don't know what to do anymore.. I know my weaknesses.. Everytime I see a word problem that requires me to translate english into math I freak out.. Same with number properties.. I try to understand everything but I just feel that I don't have the mathematical insight to score good at such questions:(.. Small example.. For the GMAT, you need to see relations and be able to set up an equation in max 20 secs in order to solve the problem.. It takes me only 2 minutes to really understand what they're asking and I don't even get to the part of setting up an equation because everytime I just do it wrong..

Also number properties.. I do understand the concept behind it.. Went over it over and over again.. Still, whenever I have to apply the rules.. I just don't know what goes wrong.. And your right, gmat club test are way above my level.. But since I only have OG and MGMAT questions, I ran out of practice questions and I thought I'd just give it a try..

Pfff gmatclubtest went away with all my confidence lol..

first of all, don t worry and don t fall into self pity. focus on your goal... if you repeat to do the same errors...take a few minutes (or hours) to make sure you understand whats wrong... and keep going once you get it right! you have to understand how the gmat works! good luck!

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