Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ : General GMAT Questions and Strategies
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# Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+

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Intern
Joined: 16 Jun 2014
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Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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16 Jun 2014, 03:20
Hi,

Am new to this forum (before, was a silent visitor), and it's my first post, I got a disastrous 440 (Q 27, V 22) today . I dunno what and were to start with My office hours are hectic, clocking around 10 hrs every day, sometimes I need to run on weekends too.

My target score is 700+ and am thinking to reappear for GMAT on Aug'14. As my score indicates am weak in both quants and verbal. . Please hep me out with a study plan, am self studying.

I have the following books:
a) OG 13
b) Manhattan SC and RC
c) GMAT Verbal review.

I scored 500~600 on MGMAT Practice test and 500 on GMAT Prep II, I wasn't hoping for 700+, as I knew I do have a long way to go, was expecting at least around 550.

Please help me out guys, and will it be feasible for me to score 700+ within two months?

Intern
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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16 Jun 2014, 19:01
Read all inspirational stories, gained some confidence , and thought of starting from scratch.

Study plan:

June 17 - July 17 : Quants (Practice test on 13/07)
July 18 - Aug 18 : Verbal (Practice test on 17/08)

Will study for 2 hrs on week days and 5 hrs on week end.

Am confused on the books to refer to , could some through some light. Please

Shall I start basics quantitative from Kaplan or should I get myself a copy of Manhattan GMAT Quantitative Strategy Guide Set, 5th Edition ?!

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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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16 Jun 2014, 19:28
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brownblack wrote:
Read all inspirational stories, gained some confidence , and thought of starting from scratch.

Study plan:

June 17 - July 17 : Quants (Practice test on 13/07)
July 18 - Aug 18 : Verbal (Practice test on 17/08)

Will study for 2 hrs on week days and 5 hrs on week end.

Am confused on the books to refer to , could some through some light. Please

Shall I start basics quantitative from Kaplan or should I get myself a copy of Manhattan GMAT Quantitative Strategy Guide Set, 5th Edition ?!

Hi Brownblack,

Refer to these posts:

best-gmat-math-prep-books-reviews-recommendations-77291.html
all-you-need-for-quant-140445.html#p1130136

Once you are done covering basics,you should also be looking at Gmatclub tests...There are tough problems and you can learn a lot from those problems..

ATB
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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16 Jun 2014, 19:48
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Hi BrownBlack,

I went from 550 to 680 in about 4 weeks. I know it's not 700+ (currently working on that and how to not underperform on the actual test), but I have found that having the best resources is crucial to scoring well.

Quant:
Get the Manhattan GMAT Advanced Quant Book (do all the exercises in it)
Then start working through the GMATClub Tests (they're amazing)

Verbal:
Use the Official Guide 13th edition (do all the questions if you have the time)

Sentence Correction:
Use Manhattan GMAT's Sentence Correction Strategy Guide
And use spidey's notes and follow this

For RC and CR, I found that doing official questions from both the OG guide and the verbal guide were the best practice

Sorry for the very unstructured post (kudos if it helps)
Intern
Joined: 16 Jun 2014
Posts: 7
Location: India
Concentration: Operations, General Management
GMAT 1: 440 Q27 V22
GPA: 3.78
WE: Information Technology (Retail Banking)
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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16 Jun 2014, 20:57
andrewwal wrote:
Hi BrownBlack,

I went from 550 to 680 in about 4 weeks. I know it's not 700+ (currently working on that and how to not underperform on the actual test), but I have found that having the best resources is crucial to scoring well.

Quant:
Get the Manhattan GMAT Advanced Quant Book (do all the exercises in it)
Then start working through the GMATClub Tests (they're amazing)

Verbal:
Use the Official Guide 13th edition (do all the questions if you have the time)

Sentence Correction:
Use Manhattan GMAT's Sentence Correction Strategy Guide
And use spidey's notes and follow this

For RC and CR, I found that doing official questions from both the OG guide and the verbal guide were the best practice

Sorry for the very unstructured post (kudos if it helps)

Thanks, Andrewwal.

Great that you have been able to improve 130 points in a matter of 4 weeks! Good going! Waiting for your success story here

I have started with Quants as of now. How to test my knowledge on Quants after I have almost done with the books? Any specific test only to measure quant ability?
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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18 Jun 2014, 10:25
Hi BrownBlack,

kudos if this post helped you,
Intern
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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25 Jun 2014, 10:25
brownblack,

I know GMATClub Tests do actually provide just math and just verbal tests. I haven't used these (but want to and will... eventually). While it may be beneficial to see your sole progress in math, I wouldn't recommend that route. Plan to train for the whole test - it takes a lot of endurance and focus. I generally believe I have great focus when performing tasks etc, but this test really drains you. If you want to see progress broken down for you, then use MGMAT tests and their generative reports. MGMAT generative reports break down your performance on tests within difficulty and topic covered, which makes it incredibly easy to track your progress.

Good luck!

Kudos if it helps!
Intern
Joined: 16 Jun 2014
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Location: India
Concentration: Operations, General Management
GMAT 1: 440 Q27 V22
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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06 Jul 2014, 23:09
Thanks guys, I have completed studying Foundations of Math by Manhattan, and am confident on the initial skills as I have manged to solve the drill sets without any hiccups

I have planned to write only quant test to gauge were I stand by 17th July (am willing to postpone the exam now as I wanted to study Manhattan strategy guides before the test.

What should be the next step, shall I start with Manhattan Strategy guides or with OG 13 ?

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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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08 Jul 2014, 12:22
Generally you should do OG13 first before moving onto other supplemental resources.

As you study OG, we recommend taking a look at our video solutions to help you understand each question: www.gmatpill.com/official-guide-gmat/
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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11 Jul 2014, 06:48
Hi brownblack,

Start with OG, it contains the questions closest to the real exam, if you are planning to take your exam on 17th.

Good Luck!!
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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17 Jul 2014, 10:12
Hi!

​1.) In regards to Verbal:
If you feel you need more grammar practice we would recommend "English Grammar in Use" (intermediate and advanced levels).

Please be aware that almost all grammar books tend to be exercise-oriented and often go into much more detail than what the GMAT tests. In addition, many grammar books do not deal with certain sentence structure issues (e.g. dangling modifiers). You need to look for something that can help in that regard too, or simply fill that gap with a proper course such as ours. You need to cross-reference what is on the GMAT with the book you get. But "Grammar in Use" is probably the best grammar self-study book available.

​2.) In regards to Quantitative:
If you find that you experience serious difficulties, you may want to supplement the learning with independent study of key concepts. No program teaches math from scratch; it would take about 6 months to a year of just math studies. Also, remember that part of achieving success on this exam has to do with strengthening your weaknesses AND your strengths. The section you are strong at will help you with your overall score, too. Remember that you will need to learn how to attack the GMAT Quant via various techniques aimed at saving time,and NOT solving everything fully. You can certainly do a bit of work on the side in math to strengthen your skills, as this cannot hurt.

​3.) In regards to pacing and timing:
It is fine to hesitate momentarily to think about what you are looking at, and to ask yourself "What have I learned about this? What traps can there be? What am I supposed to check?" AND to remind yourself: "I will not read the text or the answer choices too quickly."

Essentially, when you look at a question, such as Subject Verb Agreement, when you see a verb you should ask yourself where the subject is and what type of subject it is. By doing this, your mind will start running through all the different subject types there might be. Then you will ask yourself about the tense: "What is the tense used? Is it the right tense? Is there an indication that it should not be this tense?" etc.

For most people, 10%-15% of their errors are avoidable. Eventually, once the knowledge is in you and you know what to check without asking yourself the same questions each time, you will be able to notice rather than have to pause. But for now, train yourself to read carefully, to identify the question properly, and to notice the small differences among answer choices. (For example, why do "b" and "c" both sound good, and what is the difference between them-- because one is wrong?)

A slight pause and self-reminder to slow down may help you. It is OK to be pressed for time, however, looking at the clock after every question will not help. Nor does it help to rush through things. For now, simply try to remind yourself of what knowledge you are supposed to apply, and what you are supposed to check/identify. Focus on attacking the questions in as systematic manner as possible.

​Hope this helps!

​Sincerely,
​Evan
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Intern
Joined: 16 Jun 2014
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Location: India
Concentration: Operations, General Management
GMAT 1: 440 Q27 V22
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WE: Information Technology (Retail Banking)
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Kudos [?]: 5 [0], given: 4

Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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15 Aug 2014, 05:54
Appreciate all your valuable feedback and responses.

Done with Manhattan Strategy Guides (Only Quants), now am into OG 13 quants; still falling behind schedule, trying to cope up.

Am weak in probability, number lines and progressions problems , any pointers how can I improve or is it more of practice that will help me to improve?

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Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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19 Aug 2014, 09:13
Hi,

Were you able to give exam on schedule time? I am actually in the same boat.
This will be my third attempt in GMAT - l420(aug,13) ,440(aug,14)
i am still trying to introspect on the terrible failure. I am planning to write again in September/October.
I have never studied quants basics and practiced very few problems/DS before exam but still go 39. I was getting 42 -44.
I am looking for 49 this time.
Verbal was my weakness from the beginning. I studied verbal for the entire 3 months and ended up getting 13 in the actual GMAT. In the mock I was getting 20-25.I have started with Manhattan 10 strategy books and targeting 32.

Not sure this target will ever be possible for me.
Intern
Joined: 16 Jun 2014
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Location: India
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GMAT 1: 440 Q27 V22
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Kudos [?]: 5 [0], given: 4

Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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19 Aug 2014, 12:13
engbong wrote:
Hi,

Were you able to give exam on schedule time? I am actually in the same boat.
This will be my third attempt in GMAT - l420(aug,13) ,440(aug,14)
i am still trying to introspect on the terrible failure. I am planning to write again in September/October.
I have never studied quants basics and practiced very few problems/DS before exam but still go 39. I was getting 42 -44.
I am looking for 49 this time.
Verbal was my weakness from the beginning. I studied verbal for the entire 3 months and ended up getting 13 in the actual GMAT. In the mock I was getting 20-25.I have started with Manhattan 10 strategy books and targeting 32.

Not sure this target will ever be possible for me.

Hello Engbong

Foremost 'never ever back down', I was shattered as you may be aware of after my first attempt. GmatClub has many inspirational stories, please have a glance, they will boost your confidence.

Am now halfway through OG 13 PS, hopefully will be over with DS and PS by month end. I feel after the initial brush up am confident enough on OG PS, able to solve them without any major hiccup. As far till now, I think Manhattan Quantitative Strategy Guide books are of great help also am maintaining an error log, and I keep on jotting problems which I cannot solve at first attempt.

Verbal, is a serious issue too, I don't have a time concern, but I become restless and loose confidence during end hours, have not started with Verbal yet, will do by mid-Sept. Am planning to take a date after my first mock up score , probably by Oct/Nov. Will keep posting here.

Please do refer to 'WoundedTiger' post on how to start with a study plan, am following the same.

I wish you all good luck
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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20 Aug 2014, 21:27
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Expert's post
Hi,
In reference to your question about probability, number lines and progressions problems...I don't have any specific recommendations for books, but, if you are not using an adaptive online program, study as if you are. Start with one of the three and go for the basics. Don't move on until you've mastered it. Also, don't just dive right into the difficult equations. As with grammar, if you have the basics down, you'll be able to tackle problems you haven't experienced before. I would suggest working on one topic at a time, maybe throw a few random questions in there to keep yourself on your toes, but focus on just one topic and keep drilling yourself with practice problems. As you said, lots of practice is your best bet. Keep up the good work!
-Evan
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Intern
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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26 Aug 2014, 20:31
evansgherzi wrote:
Hi,
In reference to your question about probability, number lines and progressions problems...I don't have any specific recommendations for books, but, if you are not using an adaptive online program, study as if you are. Start with one of the three and go for the basics. Don't move on until you've mastered it. Also, don't just dive right into the difficult equations. As with grammar, if you have the basics down, you'll be able to tackle problems you haven't experienced before. I would suggest working on one topic at a time, maybe throw a few random questions in there to keep yourself on your toes, but focus on just one topic and keep drilling yourself with practice problems. As you said, lots of practice is your best bet. Keep up the good work!
-Evan

Thanks, Evansgherzi.
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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10 Nov 2016, 18:30
Hiii,

I have following resources available at my disposal:

1)OG verbal and quant
2)Manhattan foundation and Guides 0-9
5)Manhattan SC Guide

Would it be enough for starting preparation in time frame of 6 months.

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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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10 Nov 2016, 18:34
Hiii,

I have following resources available at my disposal:

1)OG verbal and quant
2)Manhattan foundation and Guides 0-9
5)Manhattan SC Guide

Would it be enough for starting preparation in time frame of 6 months.

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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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11 Nov 2016, 11:47
Hi akshay fitwe,

Since it sounds like you're just beginning your studies, then it would be a good idea to take a FULL-LENGTH practice CAT Test; you can download 2 for free from www.mba.com (and they come with some additional practice materials). If you want to do a little studying first, so that you can familiarize yourself with the basic content and question types, then that's okay - but you shouldn't wait too long to take that initial CAT. That score will give us a good sense of your natural strengths and weaknesses and will help provide a basis for comparison as you continue to study. A FULL CAT takes about 4 hours to complete, so make sure that you've set aside enough time to take it in one sitting. Once you have those scores, you should report back here and we can come up with a study plan.

I'd like to know a bit more about your timeline and goals:
1) What is your goal score?
2) When are you planning to take the GMAT?
3) When are you planning to apply to Business School?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+ [#permalink]

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12 Nov 2016, 05:59
Hi
I took Gmat Cat-1 and scored a mere 440.I want atleast 680 for considering application to programmes ( MBA or MSM in SCM).
I plan to take gmat in July 2017 and apply for R1 2017 for bschools.
Any Insights?
Re: Need help! To improve from disastrous 440 to 700+   [#permalink] 12 Nov 2016, 05:59

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