I gave GMAT on 18-Oct-2013.
Score - 710
Quant - 48
Verbal - 39
IR - 8
AWA - 5.5 (really happy : Updated on 24th Oct 2013)
Place - Mumbai
Test Center - Pearson Vue office, Andheri East (Chakala)
My journey started a few days ago when I realized about the need for an MBA to move ahead in my career. I was not satisfied with my current job as I had to be on the move a lot of time due to the stubbornness of my manger. I started preparing seriously for the GMAT 45 days prior to my GMAT date. My colleague at work helped me a lot in motivating me throughout these 45 days. In these 45 days I was on the move for almost 25 days.
I studied whenever I got time viz. at my home, while commuting to and fro from office, while going to various project sites. I used to bring book to my workplace. My boss sometimes complained that I did not stay back at office after working hours (this is ridiculous
Now my study plan
. When I remained in my head office (located at Mumbai) my working hours were from 8 AM to 6 PM (Monday to Friday), I had weekends off. During the weekdays I used to get out of office at 6 PM and run towards my home. It took me approx. 30 minutes to reach my home. I used to relax for 30-45 minutes and then I used to study till midnight usually. In the weekends I got up late every day and then used to devote around 6 hours per day for the studies. While I used to be at site, all the planning got haywire. I am an Assistant Manager in a reputed engineering firm, so my job at project site consisted mainly managing the workers and site engineers. So I used to take my study materials at site and prepared on the project site.
I started with quant, being an electrical engineer, I was good at it
. First I finished the MGMAT strategy guides for the quant. Simultaneously I also finished the 13th edition GMAT Official Guide
(Quant) and 2nd edition Quant review.This is the only preparation that I did for the quant portion of the GMAT. I think this is more than sufficient. It took me 7-8 days to complete the whole study matter. The data sufficiency part was difficult for me.
For the verbal I used the MGMAT SC
guide, and the MGMAT RC
guide. I will start with Critical Reasoning. For CR I followed Kaplan
GMAT premier. This book gave me a fair idea about the CR of the GMAT in a very consolidated manner. Then I solved the CR questions available in the Gmatclub.com and various pdfs available here. I felt confident in CR as I was usually getting an accuracy of 90-92% in my pdfs and gmatclub. I did CR questions of OG in reverse order till question no. 60.
I was weak in RC and SC, so I concentrated my studies to wards these two sections. Prepared SC from MGMAT SC
guide. I followed the book religiously. Solved the OG 13th
edition and 2nd edition Verbal review, made proper notes and constanly solved questions from gmatclub.com and beatthegmat.com. In the RC too I followed the RC guide word to word. Initially I made notes for the RC passages of the OG and then I solved the questions. As I practiced more and more RC passages, I got better at it. In the last days, I did not feel any need to take notes of the RC passages.
As far as testing is concerned, I gave the paper based GMAT tests and the two GMAT Prep exams. In both the GMAT Prep exams I gave IR and AWA as well. This is the only practice that I had for IR and AWA.
GMAT Prep 1 - 690
This was expected, as I had not prepared well for the exam. I analyzed the test afterwords. There were a lot of silly mistakes in the quant part as well as in the verbal part. I was angry with myself for such ridiculous attempt, but I did not lose hope. I brushed up my fundamentals again and then gave GMAT prep 2 one day before my GMAT date.
GMAT Prep 2 - 700
Was not too happy with such a score, as I thought I could do more. Hell, my target GMAT score was 750+, well that was what I was aiming to achieve. Same silly mistakes again and again, but I did not lose hope. The next day I went to office as my stupid boss gave me a work to do, in spite of knowing that I have GMAT on Friday (18-Oct-2013). I took a half day leave after completing the work.
The D - day. My date with GMAT. I slept at 11.30 PM on 17th October. I had set the alarm clock for 5 AM, as it took me 1.5 hours to reach the exam center from my home. Woke up at 6 AM, when my room mate told me to get up. Got ready by 6.30 AM. Then I hired an Auto Rikshaw and told him to take me to the nearest taxi stand. Caught a taxi and told him the address. The driver was awesome, I reached the center by 7.45 AM.
As usual I had the pre exam jitters on the day. So I went to a tea shop. I had a hot cuppa with my usual smoke. Then I went to the center. The security guard told me that entry will begin only by 8.15 AM. So waited outside the center. Two more persons were standing these preparing for GMAT, vigorously studying their notes. I again felt nervous seeing them, then my parents called and wished me luck. My girlfriend also called to wish me luck. Then I listened to my favorite song and entered the center.
The check in was a breeze. Then I started with the real date with GMAT. The AWA was not too difficult. The essay I wrote was as per the templates. I wrote 6 paragraphs, 1st para consisted of the introduction of the argument, then each of the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th para consisted of a flaw and my analysis of the same. The last paragraph was conclusion and end of the AWA essay. I don't know how much I will score in the AWA, feeling nervous. My essay was almost 520 words. I am not sure about the grammar and the spelling mistakes, though I proof read the essay once.
The integrated reasoning section was a breeze again. I did not feel uncomfortable at all. Then I took the break. Had a few apples, drank water and went to the washroom. Then I took the quant section. In the second break I repeated the same procedure, though I exceeded the time by 50 seconds. When I finished the verbal section and submitted the test, there were butterflies in my stomach.
The result, 710
. Though the score is not that great, but I felt happy. I hadn't felt so happy since a long time. I know my score is nothing to boast of, but for me this is very special because of the circumstances that I endured while I preparing for the test.
Sorry for such a long post, but I had to share my story with you people, who helped me in my GMAT journey. I would especially like to thank my colleague at work and Bunnuel (for the DS). Also, if I can do this, anybody can do it. Hope my post doesn't bore you. Cheers.
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My GMAT debrief
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