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My scores [#permalink] New post 03 Nov 2004, 11:32
Dear Fellow Members,

Hi! This is my first post. I'm amazed by all the high scores reported on this forum. You guys must be geniuses!

I took my first PP test back in August without any preparation whatsoever and scored a 500. I had forgotten so much math; it was unbelievable. The breakdown was something like: Q 29, V 32. I signed up for the Princeton Review accelerated four-week course and cracked open a high school algebra book. My PR practice test scores ranged from 530 to 600. My math improved substantially, going from 30 to 37/45. My verbal
scores consistently went down, going from 34 to 28. I'm not sure why. I think that when I took my first test, I was using more of my own intuition on the verbal section. For some reason, when I started applying PR strategies, I got more confused?? I finished about 80% of the OG problems that my instructors had assigned and did additional on-line problems.

I took my first official GMAT at the end of October and scored a 590.
Q 42 V 28 AWA 5.5. My AWA score wasn't a surprise since I'm a pretty good writer.
I took about a week and a half off and started studying again. I reviewed the PR textbook and some of the on-line class lessons. This time I focused on verbal more. Starting at the beginning of each section, I did about 75% of SC, 80% (?) of RC, and 60% of CR. I was weakest in CR. Overall, I felt that I understood more of the basic concepts and could work faster.

I took the test again at the end of October. I noticed that I was rechecking my answers quite a bit. I definitely slowed down during the middle half of the exam. So this time I couldn't get to maybe 6 of the verbal questions. I frantically tried to randomly select an answer choice for the last few questions. I left a total of 2 verbal questions blank and 1 math question blank. My score was a shocking 540. Q 39 and V 25. I went home and cried.

I think that I need to focus on practicing harder questions now and also the timing. I bought Kaplan 2005 with CD, Kaplan 800, and a LSAT book. I'm not sure when I should register for my next test.

Studying on my own can feel isolating. I would like to participate more in the discussions on this forum.

Thanks for listening.

Sincerely,

Questor
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 [#permalink] New post 03 Nov 2004, 12:46
doode

thanks for sharing u r experinces and being candid about it, remember 3 things

Dont lose heart
Keep yourself motivated
and Work on your errors and you will be soon riding the 650+ road!!

all the best and get ready to tame the beast!!

rxs0005
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 [#permalink] New post 03 Nov 2004, 19:07
This is the best GMAT prep place.And don't loose heart. Participate in the grp and u'll learn a lot.

You might feel sick and down everytime you think about ur past score...But when you will see the admit letter from a B school, all the pain that you underwent to make it till there will hardly look anything.

All the best and let us tame the monster called GMAT !
_________________

510 on my first GMAT. 610 on second GMAT.!
The struggle continues.

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 [#permalink] New post 05 Nov 2004, 13:31
Hi,

I am not so sure that you need to find harder materials. If your true score is near 550 you are just above the mean and a verbal score of 25 is well below the mean. This suggests that you need to focus on mastering questions of intermediate difficulty rather than the most difficult questions. Look at the Conceptual Overview of CATs for more information.

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 [#permalink] New post 08 Nov 2004, 01:21
Hi,

I had a similar problem with the verbal section. When I took GMAT for the first time in 1998 my verbal score was about 18. A year later it was 25, couple years later it was 34. I am taking GMAT again in a couple days, and this time I feel much more confident. What helped me the most was OG and Princeton Verbal Workout. As it was said for many times in this forum, after you have done a set of problems from OG, go through ALL problems again, try to explain to yourself why you chose a particular answer choice and then read an OG explanation to that problem to see the logic and check whether there is an easier and quicker way to get to the right answer. The main point is to understand the logic of GMAT. As for Princeton Workout, it helped me to indentify the main flaws in SC and CR questions quicker. Now when I do RC section I get 95-100% questions right!

Hope it will help!
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Additional Comments about score and school visits [#permalink] New post 12 Nov 2004, 11:52
Hi. Thank you all for the encouraging words and advice!

Hjort: I'm sorry. Can you tell me where I can find the "Conceptual Overview of CATs"? I can't find it in OG or the Kaplan book.

I just received my official scores. My AWA score went up from 5.5 last time to 6.0. Too bad b-schools most likely won't care about my AWA score.

I just came back from a trip visiting schools. Of the three schools that I've visited so far (USC, Rice, Indiana), I like Indiana's program, students, and faculty the best. I think that I would be very happy there. The median/average GMAT score is around 650. I was talking to the cab driver during my ride to the school. He said that his ex-wife went to school there and is currently earning about $200,000 per year. He said that the school does a great job in helping its students find jobs.

I'm also looking at some of the Top Ten schools like all of you. But since now I know that there's at least one perfect school for me, I feel that a heavy burden has been lifted off my shoulders. I would be so happy to be accepted by Indiana!

Hope you all get into the school of your dreams!

Sincerely,

Questor
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 [#permalink] New post 14 Nov 2004, 19:22
Please see "A Conceptual Overview of Adaptive Tests" here on the GMAT club website under GMAT.

Indiana is a great school, stronger than some of the elites in some domains.

Some schools certainly care about your AWA score- an extremely high AWA will be taken into consideration by some schools.

Hjort
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 [#permalink] New post 16 Nov 2004, 12:46
I agree, you have go where you are happy, not because it's an elite school. I would be so unhappy going to a Berkley or Wharton. Those aren't the type of people I am friends with in my personal life and they aren't the people I would like to spend hundreds of hours with on team projects and homework. I found UNC & Indiana students the best. I visited Duke (primarily because my dad was a research scientist there) and let's say I saved $175 for my application fee; I found it to be a sterile and dull environment and a few snobby students didn't help. Others will love some of those schools and students but it really is about "fit."

Good luck with your GMAT test.
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Duke [#permalink] New post 16 Nov 2004, 13:31
Dear riteshb,

It's funny that you mentioned Duke. I was talking to a student while visiting schools. She also said that she didn't like Duke when she visited. I'm surprised because the Duke admissions officer at an event I attended talked about "Team Fuqua" and "family." I guess there's no substitution for seeing the schools firsthand.

Questor
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 [#permalink] New post 16 Nov 2004, 13:52
True, I visited UNC first and not one student there acted like they had better things to do than answer a few questions that I had; even the professor introduced himself and shook my hand. At Duke, the attitude was a little different. I'm sure they are very smart there since the average GMAT last year was 707 but the details are what makes the school for me.

Try to participate in the forums so you can break the 600 barrier. I scored a 540 on 1st attempt on Sept. 7 so in two weeks I will hopefully see an improvement. I'm posting and reading questions on 2 different GMAT forums so I can get as much practice as possible.
  [#permalink] 16 Nov 2004, 13:52
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