Not sure if this is the proper section for this, but if not, a MOD can move it if need be.
Anyways, I thought I would share my hopeful story with you all. I have been living in Asia for the last 5 years and have been off the beaten path quite a bit. Have started two businesses out here (one in China, on in the Philippines) and have been entirely self sufficient thus far. Not living high on the hog, but still living. I started feeling like I am stagnating and decided to go to Bschool. I took my first GMAT on short notice (10 days to study) and got a 620. Absolutely murdered in quant (37) and passable in Verbal (39). Aced AWA and IR, but no one cares about that.
The score seemed to reflect my experience. Lots of hands on learning, but no "classroom" smarts left from undergrad. After all, it had been ten years since I took a math class!
Long story short, I downloaded Manhattan prep books
1-9 and dove head first into the math. Got the advanced quant book too, and went out and bought a GMAT Verbal practice book for extra practice. Basically, I went through all of the quant books, and then the weeks leading up to the big day (2nd try), I took a practice test every day and then went back and reviewed and resolved the things I got wrong.
Made the mistake of getting a hotel room near the test center and had a lot of trouble sleeping, but still managed to have a happily ever after story. 47/42 and 8 IR for a 720 total. And that was with not answering the last quant question! Could not have been happier. Now I'm onto the bschool apps! No more GMAT!!!!!!
Moral of the story, you don't necessarily need high priced classes or lots of fancy stuff to get a big score bump. A lot of hard work in a short period of time, and making sure you understand how they want you to solve each question is the most important thing, and, for me, that could only be done with loads loads and loads of practice problems