Hey all - I've been lurking on this site for about 3 months and gleaning endless amounts of knowledge from all of you. I don't post much (only when I'm sure I'm right to save embarassment!)
You guys are all an inspiration for me and tremendously skilled at sentence correction. The dedication of some people to this site is an amazing untapped resource.
I'm a 24 year old Canadian engineer and I just wrote the GMAT ~3 weeks ago. I'll try to be brief with my prep and test description. I studied for about 3 months. I did work initially only on wknds (about 3 hours) In the month before the exam I ramped things up to ~ 6-hours per wknd and 8 hours/ week or so. I spent a LOT of time on this forum while at work - maybe a bit too much.
This was the firs test prep material I bought and I, in contast with some people here, really liked it. It was challenging and the software is outstanding. I did each test a couple of times and I found that you can really excel in the gmat if you do the same quesitons over and over to train your brain to think like the gmat. Scores:
610, 640, 710, 700, 580 (huh?)
I took the advice of forumers and didn't bother with the verbal. The math tends to focus on questions I didn't see too much on the GMAT, but still good practice.
Probably the best resource out there. The math is extremely time consuming so don't get discouraged if you can't finish. Sometimes out of frustration I would pause the exam so I could finish on time (great simulation of test conditions eh?) Just work through the problems and it will benefit you immensly. I scored in the 620 - 720 range over the 5 tests.
Essential. You WILL score very close to what you get on these tests, so take them seriously and understand your errors after you go over them.
Make sure the name at the top of the screen is yours. Me and the guy next to me were writing eachothers test for the first 10 minutes before I figured this out and talked to the useless admin.
My overhead pen broke on the first question and ink started spilling all over my ridiculous laminated notebook. This cost me 3 minutes and a lot of stress on the quant. A pen and paper would have saved me tons of grief and improved my score immensly - I don't know why GMAC doesn't allow pen and paper!
The essays were straight forward. If you have half decent writing skills I wouldn't study too much. I prepared the wknd before the test by looking at some canned topics they typically test you on. They're usually simple assumption questions, much easier than what you would see in crtitical reasoning.
I thought I bombed the test completely. I was strung out on red bulls, sweating and thought I got destroyed on quant, which should be my strong suit. I accepted my score and it was 720. 47Q and 42V. I curse that pen, but there's no way I'm taking that test again.
I just wanted to say another big thanks for the people who continually post and discuss on this forum. There's a lot of people who benefit!
Cheers from Canada!