I gave the GMAT on 7th June and scored 700 (Q50, V34).
Edit: Update, scored 5.5 on AWA and 8 on IR.
Before starting with the debrief, let me put forward a dilemma.
I do not like that V34, mainly because my lowest score in verbal had been 38 and because this looks like an imbalance between scores. My average of the 8 mocks that i gave comes out as 730-40, so m not sure whether I should retake. Further, i guess that my profile is somewhat different from most Indian applicants, and I should focus on improving my application. I am an entrepreneur and my venture revolves around search engine optimization/marketing. Now, I am really not sure how business schools would see this. Would they bucket me in the Indian IT Male group ( Yes, i am an Indian male software engineer) or would they give major points for venturing out immediately after college ( Maybe because most Indian male software engineers join IT jobs and don't venture out on their own). Please help me out with this.
Alright, time for the debrief!Preparation
So, i started around mid of March and took the date first. Taking the date ensured that i never lost focus, got lazy or any such thing. In the beginning, i focused on the basics and used MGMAT strategy guides
for them. In my opinion, they were excellent and helped me cover most of the things pretty quickly. I would definitely recommend them to people who have sufficient time with them as they are a bit comprehensive. I split my study time equally between verbal and quant, covering one strategy guide of quant for a couple of days and balancing it with a strategy guide of verbal. This helped me in keeping the focus and preventing boredom.
Once i was through with the strategy guides, I started doing questions from a variety of sources. I had already covered most of the official guide questions by this time and started focusing on official quant and verbal guides. The GMAT club questions, tests and forums were a great source for all types of questions. I remember waking up every morning, opening up my email and solving the GMAT club question of the day and some questions from the forums. It was actually fun!
I also used to follow this practice pattern twice or thrice during the week. Used to set the timer for 75 minutes and tried to attempt 40 700-level questions in this time. For Verbal, used to set 75 minutes on the timer and completed 4 RC passages, 15 CR and 15 SC questions. This strategy really helped me build stamina for the exam.
I started with the practice tests around 19th April. I took a practice exam every Thursday (as my paper was on thursday), at the same time as my exam appointment. In alternate weeks, i gave an exam on Monday too. Never ignored essays or integrated reasoning during the practice exam as i wanted a realistic measure of my ability. Following are the scores that i got with practice exams.
GPrep New Version with IR 19/04 : 710 Q49 V38
MGMAT 1 26/4 : 700 Q47 V39
MGMAT 2 3/5 : 730 Q50 V39
MGMAT 3 7/5 : 730 Q50 V39
MGMAT 4 10/5 : 760 Q51 V42
MGMAT 5 17/5 : 730 Q51 V38
MGMAT 6 21/5 : 770 Q51 V44
GPrep 2 24/5 : 770 Q50 V44
Gprep 1 Retake 31/5 : 770 Q51 V45
Gprep 2 Retake 4/6 : 780 Q51 V46
Real GMAT 700 Q50 V34
I would definitely say that the final performance was not what i had expected, i was pretty confident of scoring above 720. For the first time in all the exams above, i experienced mental fatigue in the verbal section. I guess that was because I was too anxious to sleep properly the night before. Materials Used
-MGMAT Strat Guides
- GMAT Club Questions
- MGMAT Practice TestsThe IR Section
For those who would be giving the next generation GMAT, i guess this small summary would help you a lot.
Dont worry about IR.
It is not something you should lose sleep over. Just like the argument essay, you need regular practice for the section, nothing more. OG is definitely the best source for practice questions and I would not recommend any other source for it. Make sure that you give the practice tests with IR for building exam temperament. In fact, IR actually helped me get warmed up for the quant section.Test Day Experience
My test day experience was pretty decent. The essay was a breeze and the IR helped me get in the zone. After a quick 4 minute break (had a chocolate and drank some gatorade), i attacked quant. At around 25th question, i got 3 insanely difficult questions. I had to guess two of them and apparently, i got those guesses right as the third one was an out of this world DS question. Had to spend 4 minutes on that one. The ending was pretty neat and i was confident of above 50 or 51. Took another break, longer one this time. Ate the remaining chocolate and had gatorade. As soon as i was done, i went in with 2 mins remaining on the clock. In between verbal, i was feeling exhausted but managed to go on. At around 33rd, a very convoluted RC passage came up. I think i messed that one up. Afterwards, the CR and SC were pretty average level and i managed to get all of them. Finished the section with 3 mins on the clock.
Finally, I took a look at the score and had a mixed feeling. I was happy that i did not go below 700 but was disappointed that my verbal score was the lowest till date. Anyways, heaved a sigh of relief and walked out of the room.Suggestions
- The preparation phase should be adequately supported by practice. You would not achieve perfection without practicing different types of questions on each concept. This holds for all sections in the exam.
- Completing practice exams with essays and IR would definitely help you in building stamina for the exam.
- Relax the day before the exam, you don't want to feel saturated during the actual exam.
- Get adequate sleep! Sleep was a big reason behind my comparatively lower verbal score.
- Breaks are important, use them well. Eat chocolates as they really help in giving you that boost you need.
I hope this debrief helps people who are looking for a debrief of the new GMAT.
Experts, Please take a look at the question I asked above and help me out in any way possible
And finally, thanks for reading this ridiculously long post guys!