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Low GMAT score chances

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Current Student
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Joined: 27 Jun 2011
Posts: 10
Location: Mexico
Concentration: Finance
Schools: Kelley '15 (M)
GPA: 3.52
WE: Asset Management (Mutual Funds and Brokerage)
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Kudos [?]: 5 [0], given: 1

Low GMAT score chances [#permalink] New post 14 May 2012, 06:50
Hello everybody, until now I´ve been a passive member of this great community and I believe it’s time to jump in. Let me tell you a little bit about myself. I’m a 27 years old Mexican with a Bachelor’s in Financial Management (GPA 3.52/4) from one of the top schools in Mexico. I have 4.5 years of professional experience: 3 years in financial risk management and since last August I’ve been working in the portfolio management division for a local mutual fund management firm in which I help manage over 1.5 billion u.s. dollars. As a result of this new job I realized that I wanted to learn more about portfolio management, trading, investments in general and develop my management skills, so the logic step for me was to continue my studies and I believe an MBA is the right choice for me.

So I started preparing for the long and exhausting application process in March of 2011, when I enrolled in a gmat/admissions course. After a couple of months of taking this course and after a lot of hours of self study, I took the GMAT for the first time in June. The result was so disappointing that when I look back, I don’t know how I got such a low score… I got a dismal 480!

I felt so bad at the time but I knew that this was, to some extent, a normal situation and that a lot of people take the exam more than once. So after a short break I started studying again. I tried a different approach this time; I did every problem in the OG both math and verbal. I also got a hold of a bunch of problems that are used on a very recognized course here in Mexico City and finally I did several times the GMAT Prep exams and a couple of Manhattan Gmat tests, scoring in the range of 600 – 700 in both tests. For the second try, I scheduled the exam for September. On test day I felt pretty sure that this time was going to be my last. I felt really good during the math section and ok in the verbal section. I really thought that I was going to good but I got a 590!

One more time I felt beat by the GMAT. Even though this score meant a 110 points jump I knew this wasn’t enough for the school that I’m aiming for. At the time I was looking to apply to Stern, Columbia, Kellogg and Haas. So with this in mind I started studying again for mi 3rd GMAT. This time I did again the OG problems, I kept doing GMAT Prep and Manhattan GMAT exams (being aware that the scores were not that representative given the repeated problems). What I did different this time was that I went back to review basic math and verbal concepts, I gave a lot of time to reading this forum, Manhattan GMAT tutorials and a lot of other GMAT related websites.

I did my 3rd GMAT last Saturday (May 12th) and the results where shocking! I still can´t believe what happened. After being really calmed and working through each math and verbal problem without any apparent difficulty…. I scored a horrible 550 !! I felt really disappointed, defeated and really really angry because I not only didn’t improve my last score, but I scored 40 points lower...

So, the purpose of this post is for the good people of this forum to help me shed some light on the possibilities I have given these GMAT results. I am not planning to take the GMAT a 4th time, I don’t really want to go through this exhausting process again and I feel that I’ve done everything within my power to improve my score, but I just haven’t been able to do it.

Do you think that I have any chances of getting into the schools I mentioned with this score? (590) I’ve read that sometimes it is possible to offset a low GMAT score with a proven track record in quant jobs or with good grades from respectable undergrad schools. I also got a really good TOEFL (110/120). Or, do I have to forget those options and be more realistic with my choice of business schools?

I don’t think I’ll have any problem writing good essays and getting really good recommendation letters but I’m worried that my GMAT score will outshine everything else.

I really appreciate your help and the time you took to read this long post.

Rene Lopezvictoria
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Re: Low GMAT score chances [#permalink] New post 14 May 2012, 14:38
Hello,

I feel sorry to hear about what you are going through during your GMAT journey.

I can understand your stagnation in motivation to retake your GMAT, however I would suggest you two points

1) Take break of 10 days
2) Read debrief of those who have taken multiple attempts at GMAT ( 3 or more)

With the given GMAT score, the mentioned schools are stretches for you, you are right that a few special courses may help you to offset your low GMAT score, but your GMAT splits are also not inclined towards any one side (both are on lower side if you had say 37/38 verbal and 40/41 quant, you might mention that xyz quant courses helped you to increase your proficiency).

So, I would suggest you to retake, and if you think you can not retake, then the only option is to give your best to your essays and recos, but believe me your essays have to be extremely good.

Feel free to revert for any other help

Hope this helps
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Current Student
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Joined: 27 Jun 2011
Posts: 10
Location: Mexico
Concentration: Finance
Schools: Kelley '15 (M)
GPA: 3.52
WE: Asset Management (Mutual Funds and Brokerage)
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 5 [0], given: 1

Re: Low GMAT score chances [#permalink] New post 15 May 2012, 05:57
OasisGC wrote:
Hello,

I feel sorry to hear about what you are going through during your GMAT journey.

I can understand your stagnation in motivation to retake your GMAT, however I would suggest you two points

1) Take break of 10 days
2) Read debrief of those who have taken multiple attempts at GMAT ( 3 or more)

With the given GMAT score, the mentioned schools are stretches for you, you are right that a few special courses may help you to offset your low GMAT score, but your GMAT splits are also not inclined towards any one side (both are on lower side if you had say 37/38 verbal and 40/41 quant, you might mention that xyz quant courses helped you to increase your proficiency).

So, I would suggest you to retake, and if you think you can not retake, then the only option is to give your best to your essays and recos, but believe me your essays have to be extremely good.

Feel free to revert for any other help

Hope this helps


Thanks a lot for your reply. I guess I'll have to think about retaking if I want to keep those schools as an option. Do you know if there is a max number of times you can take the GMAT in a certain period of time? Mine were in June, September '11 and last week.
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Re: Low GMAT score chances [#permalink] New post 15 May 2012, 11:38
Expert's post
You can only take the GMAT five times in a 12- month period.
Good luck. :)
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Re: Low GMAT score chances   [#permalink] 15 May 2012, 11:38
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