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My GMAT journey....to 590 and debrief

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Senior Manager
Senior Manager
Joined: 25 May 2010
Posts: 322
Location: United States
Concentration: Strategy, Finance
Schools: CBS '14 (A)
GMAT 1: 590 Q47 V25
GMAT 2: 560 Q47 V20
GMAT 3: 600 Q47 V25
GMAT 4: 680 Q49 V34
Followers: 4

Kudos [?]: 46 [1] , given: 32

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My GMAT journey....to 590 and debrief [#permalink] New post 28 May 2011, 11:07
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GMATClubbers,

After studying for almost 6-7 months, I gave my first GMAT attempt 05/27/2011 and scored 590 (Q47, V25). I'm highly disappointed with my score and will give GMAT again in couple of months with a more focused preparation.

1. Some emotions...
I deserved more than 650, but I think I lacked somewhere in understanding OR implementing some core fundamentals which I thought I have grasped them but didn't apply them consistently enough. I'll figure that out during next couple of months. Moreover, V25 shows I definitely have missed out on big chunk of questions. GMAT really tricks you and never lets you guess how well or bad you're doing.

No matter what how much one prepares for the test, GMAT is deft at throwing problems during the test that will throw one's timing off. Although my timing was not awfully bad, I think I did fell into the trap of spending more time than necessary on middle questions.

2. Study Material...

I used all the best books/material available, however inconsistency, lack of focus, and 'more than required' stress reduced my efficiency and productivity a lot. Moreover, I had spent a great deal of time looking for some 'free' material, and I realized that this activity is a complete waste of time.

Following are the list of books/material I used during my preparation:


In my opinion, all of the above books and material are of great quality except GMATPill. After getting frustrated with my verbal score ( typically hovered around 30s), I thought of giving GMATPill a shot. In my opinion, GMATPill didn't live up to its hype. I was totally disappointed with GMATPill and asked for refund. Needless to say, Zeke denied to give refund as it was against their policy blah blah blah...After that, I didn't care for $170 bucks wasted on GMATPill.

It was very difficult to digest material from all the above books and keep revising them. I created my own handwritten notes from above books and referred them through out. I wish I'd have created them in MSword and shared here.

Some important threads I read and at least tried to follow:

http://tranquilstorm.wordpress.com/2007 ... -strategy/
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/21/science/21memory.html
http://www.dailypennsylvanian.com/artic ... ng-anxiety

3. Test Day experience....

Visiting test center a day before definitely reduced anxiety and I'd strongly encourage everyone to do so. Moreover, I watched this video.

A night before the test, I packed my bag with few chocolates, a granola bar, a bottle of water, my passport and a blueberry muffin( in the morning to keep it fresh :) ). On test day, I woke up at 5:45 AM and had bagel with my regular coffee. After finishing few simple questions, I drove to test center in Somerset NJ.

After completing simple formalities, I started my AWA section. I messed up issue essay but didn't let it affect my rest of the test. I took a break and started with Quant. All the questions were doable and nothing seemed out of ordinary. I may have screwed up the last questions, and this might have been the reason for not seeing any combinatorics question. But yes, questions were very tricky and convoluted.

I took a break after quant and told myself to focus on Verbal section. I started off well with initial few questions and thought I absolutely nailed first 12 questions including RC/SC/CR. Then, I saw very tricky CR and SC question. I was not sure of my answers and picking up answer between two close choices. I rushed in the middle and spared good time for the last 10 questions. Surprisingly, I was not at all scared/stressed of RCs anymore. I couldn't concentrate on last three questions when I saw 5 minute timer. I did what I could and saw V25 after finishing off some useless demographic details.

Tips:
    - You can write down timing table for Quant during first 4 minutes of when you pre select schools.
    - Always raise your hand for new booklet during Quant so that you can writing timing table for Verbal beforehand. Proctor will take you old booklet once you ask for new one.
    - Use your break to the fullest. Proctor said something that I couldn't hear due to ear plugs and I rushed quickly without realizing that I have 4 minutes of break time left.


4. If I could have..., I would have scored more....

- Distributed practice CATs along the journey...
- Followed a better error log than simply circling or tick marking the incorrectly answered questions...
- Internalized the Verbal strategies... ( I have no clue how to do this and would like to ask all of you to suggest).
- completed all GMATClub Quant tests...
- achieved consistency in practice tests score...

As always, suggestions/comments are much appreciated. Does anyone know whether we get a detailed report of GMAT test showing how many and which questions one has missed? I wanna know where I really screwed verbal portion.

That's all guys. I'll start my new journey in few days.
_________________

"Whether You Think You Can or Can't, You're Right"--Henry Ford
680 Debrief
600 Debrief
590 Debrief
My GMAT Journey


Last edited by rg1 on 30 May 2011, 12:03, edited 2 times in total.
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Joined: 31 Dec 2010
Posts: 27
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Re: My GMAT journey....to 590 and debrief [#permalink] New post 28 May 2011, 15:10
Nice debrief!
Good lucky next time!
_________________

Gmat Prep: 540(45Q,20V) 5/25/2011
Knewton Diag 490(38Q,22V) 5/28/2011
Knewton 2: 520(32Q;30V) 6/16/2011

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Re: My GMAT journey....to 590 and debrief [#permalink] New post 28 May 2011, 22:57
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Now you can get gmat club tests since u have 200+ poists :D and its free this memorial weekend!
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Manager
Manager
Status: Married
Affiliations: MENSA India
Joined: 30 Apr 2011
Posts: 102
Location: India
Concentration: Marketing, International Business
GMAT 1: 630 Q42 V35
GMAT 2: 640 Q42 V35
GMAT 3: 640 Q44 V32
GMAT 4: 660 Q47 V34
GMAT 5: 680 Q46 V37
GPA: 3.6
WE: Sales (Computer Software)
Followers: 0

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Re: My GMAT journey....to 590 and debrief [#permalink] New post 22 Jun 2011, 12:55
Hey,

Thank you for sharing. I really appreciate this because very few people would show the courage.
I am also really thankful for such a good analysis.

Wish you the very best for the next attempt!
_________________

Always aim at the moon. Never mind if you miss, you will fall in the stars :-)

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Re: My GMAT journey....to 590 and debrief [#permalink] New post 26 Jun 2011, 22:57
I also experiences the same situation actually. I took the exam around a week ago. My score is very much similar to yours - 590 (Q45, V25). I have been studying GMAT for around 5 months.
These includes
- Official Guide 11, 12 and verbal
- MG materials
- Princetons book
I even take a Kaplan class and the online catalog as well.

My score on the test other CAT test before the exam are very vary;

- MG 700 (first try)
- Kaplan 1st (550)
- Kaplan 2nd (600)
-kapland 3rd (690)
- Kaplan 3th (590)
- GMAT prep (550 - 4 days before the exam!)
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Re: My GMAT journey....to 590 and debrief [#permalink] New post 26 Jun 2011, 23:07
from what i do learn is that i put too much stress on myself in persuing 650+ score (all of my friends do!!!)
I get to stress out on the exam day especially after I got 550 on the GMAT prep. I am not going back to review everything especially on the verbal part.
For myself, the biggest weakness that I do have is in reading (since I am not a native). It is very important to concentrate on the questions and stay focus though u do realize that the time is ticking! So I think the best strategy for nnow is to get concentrage and try to tackel the question with out stress.
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Re: My GMAT journey....to 590 and debrief [#permalink] New post 26 Jun 2011, 23:11
For the Qunatitative part, if you wish to get more than 45, you should never guess on any of the answer! When I was reaching around 15th question is start to guess becuase the time is running out! Then, I realized the the question become much easier that I actually finish all the question 10 mins before time. When I was doing the 27th-28th question, I did notice that I will not get a good score since the question turn out to be quite easy. So ... for those who aim at very high verbal socre, it is very important not to make guesses. It could actually impat on your score!
Re: My GMAT journey....to 590 and debrief   [#permalink] 26 Jun 2011, 23:11
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