I took my second GMAT in 9/29. Although I didnтАЩt get a high score, I still want to share my experience because this site has been a great help to me:) Here are the breakdowns:
Quantitative 49 91
Verbal 31 61
Total 660 87
And here are my scores on Princeton CAT: 690 630 690
First in the quantitative section, I donтАЩt think the questions in the real test are harder than those in the OG. I guessed at only one question and finished the section about 8 minutes earlier; however, I may have carelessly made some mistakes so I didnтАЩt get a score above 50. In short, if youтАЩre comfortable with those questions in OG and are sure that you understand every question youтАЩve done wrong, the only other things you need are caution and confidence.
Like most international students, I faced some difficulties in the verbal section, even though the questions were not as hard as IтАЩd imagined. I felt most comfortable with the SC; most of them can be solved by the rules and idioms in the Kaplan
and the Princeton verbal books. I also got four RC passages during the test; luckily, only one of them is very long (more than 80 lines), and two of them are about business (since I am a finance major). Finally, I felt least comfortable with the CR. I donтАЩt think the questions were really that hard, but I did ponder on some of them; I also got one boldface question. As usual, I finished 35 questions in the section and left the remaining ones unanswered. In general, I think most questions in the verbal section are very similar to the ones in OG.
I took my first GMAT in April and ended up with 610. I was very frustrated because I thought I could get at least 650. However, I learned my lessons in the first test, and I want to share them with those who are preparing for their first GMAT:
1. Psychological pressure can devastate you, so try not to be nervous both before and during the test. When you first walk into the testing room and be seated, do not rush to begin the test; instead, allow yourself some time to adjust the height of the seat, the position of the keyboard or the mouse, etc; you should always place yourself in the most comfortable situation. Also, take some breath before you begin each section; the clock wonтАЩt тАЬtickтАЭ until you dismiss the first page of each section. Finally, do not think too much about the result, because this will do nothing but make you more nervous. Before my first test, I always told myself to aim at 650; before my second test, I simply donтАЩt care (although I care a lot AFTER the test).
2. Practicing on the paper is very different from taking test on the computer, so be sure to take some full-length CAT before taking the real test. For example, on the paper we usually practice each question type separately; in CAT, however, questions in each section appear randomly. Also, some people are used to taking notes on the questions while practicing on the paper; however, since we are not allowed to mark anything on the computer screen, we should learn to make use of the scratch papers as we practice. Finally, our eyes get tired easily when we stare at the computer screen, so we better get used to it before the test.
For more information, please refer to the тАЬFinal Week TipsтАЭ on this site; it has almost anything you need to know about GMAT preparation for the last week. I benefited from it A LOT.
Gook luck everyone!