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Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770)

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Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 16:19
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770 (51, 44)

I just got back from my exam today and I'm quite happy with my score overall... but I still think I could have done better. I'm not complaining; just being hard on myself.

Anyways, here's my story. I took the GMAT late July and got a comfortable score. I was somewhat surprised with my verbal (only 38) so I rescheduled to take it a month later. Since work was so busy during October, I pushed the date back to September (today).

My journey started early January this year. I studied for about 2 months (on and off, but got serious during the last two weeks of February). March rolled along, and I had to switch my focus a bit. I needed at least 4 months to study for my level 2 CFA exam, so I postponed my GMAT study until late June (giving me the final month of hardcore study).

I was fairly comfortable with quant already, so I spent the majority of my time on verbal (probably 80% of my total time). Here are some of the books I've used:

1) MGMAT SC (a must)
2) PowerScore CR (crucial)
3) MGMAT Numbers Property and Word Translation (I heard both were good -- I scanned through most of the topics; didn't do much of the "homework")
4) OG 12 (went through this book almost 2 times. went through my "circled" questions 3+ times. By circled, I mean, anything I wasn't quick at, or had trouble with, or simply got wrong)
5) OG Verbal
6) OG Math
7) OG 11 for more practice (I pretty much completed this book -- even though I knew there were significant overlaps w/ 12)
8) random SC problems on the forum
9) old GMAC paper exams (I have 9 -- did all the verbals from 7 of 'em)
10) forgot GMATclub tests (couple for math, all the verbal ones)

Some other resources I have that I didn't used much:
1) PowerScore OnDemand course
2) MGMAT CR
3) MGMAT RC
4) PowerScore SC

I didn't keep an error log because after working on so many problems, I realized exactly which problems I had trouble with. You kinda get a sense of your strengths and weaknesses fairly quick.

I did, however, kept a log of all my CATs (in ascending order by date):
Provider Score Math Verbal
Kaplan 2007 Premier Book 650 45 39
Knewton Free Diagnostic CAT 600 42 31
PowerPrep CAT1 730 49 38
PowerPrep CAT2 730 49 39
GMATPrep v2 CAT1 720 49 43
MGMAT CAT1 700 45 40
MGMAT CAT2 720 47 42
MGMAT CAT3 680 47 36
GMATPrep v2 CAT2 750 50 38
GMATPrep v2 Retake1 CAT1 740 50 40
GMATPrep v2 Retake2 CAT1 750 49 42
GMATPrep v2 Retake2 CAT2 770 51 42
MGMAT CAT4 730 50 39
MGMAT CAT5 780 51 45


If you want any details just leave your questions here. I'll try to respond as much as I can.
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Last edited by adalfu on 21 Sep 2010, 09:11, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 16:30
It seems that you didn't even bother with the GMAT Prep #1. Was there a reason for this? It seemed to indicate the most accurate score for you.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 16:34
ooh "GMATprep v2" simply just means the newer GMATprep software. I believe there's an older one floating around... the 2005 version?

I had initially planned to take the v1 (older version), but decided last minute to just stick w/ the newer version and MGMAT's CATs. I think doing like 8-10 CATs is good enough practice for timing.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 16:57
congrats dude. certainly risky going for it at 730
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 17:05
Wow, great job, especially with the 51Q! And good luck with your applications! :)
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 18:24
Congrats by the way...I was so blown away by the score that I didn't even say so.

One question. Do you remember by which test (#1 or #2) you took to get the GMAT Prep scores above? I had about a 30 point decrease from test #1 to test #2 on the new version of GMAT Prep (i.e., downloaded from MBA.com last week). Is it common that test #2 is more difficult than test #1?
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 20:55
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 21:00
CaliCpa wrote:
Congrats by the way...I was so blown away by the score that I didn't even say so.

One question. Do you remember by which test (#1 or #2) you took to get the GMAT Prep scores above? I had about a 30 point decrease from test #1 to test #2 on the new version of GMAT Prep (i.e., downloaded from MBA.com last week). Is it common that test #2 is more difficult than test #1?


I'm not too sure... I've only taken the newer version of GMATPrep (i.e., I didn't installed the 2005 version of GMATPrep)... but I assume that they're both the same in terms of difficulty.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 22:27
great score
all the best for ur applications
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2010, 23:56
8-) Dream Score 8-)

Great improvement, but I were the adcom I woudl have certainly asked you one simple question - why did you retake Gmat rathar than improving your applicant and profile.

No doubt your new score is great, but do keep that answer with you.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 21 Sep 2010, 00:08
Could you explain a little more about how you boosted your Verbal? Mostly re-doing SC, or practicing CR, or? Did some things start to click the 2nd time around?
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 21 Sep 2010, 00:14
adalfu wrote:

... but I still think I could have done better. I'm not complaining; just being hard on myself.



Please dont put us mortals to shame by sayings so !

Heartiest congratulations on scoring 770...Good Luck !
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 21 Sep 2010, 00:21
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 21 Sep 2010, 01:44
NewSc2 wrote:
Could you explain a little more about how you boosted your Verbal? Mostly re-doing SC, or practicing CR, or? Did some things start to click the 2nd time around?



Yes, Please throw some light on things that clicked the 2nd time.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 21 Sep 2010, 02:00
Wow. excellent score. yes, we would to hear how did you take your verbal from 38 to 44. thank you.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 21 Sep 2010, 08:54
gurpreetsingh wrote:
8-) Dream Score 8-)

Great improvement, but I were the adcom I woudl have certainly asked you one simple question - why did you retake Gmat rathar than improving your applicant and profile.

No doubt your new score is great, but do keep that answer with you.



Well, because I'm practically done with all my essays... I was finished w/ Stanford's last month (my editor took a read two times), and pretty much finished with the drafts on Wharton's and Chicago's. I thought the time best spent would be from getting a higher GMAT score... i'll do anything to better my chances (since I have a low GPA).
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Last edited by adalfu on 21 Sep 2010, 09:04, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 21 Sep 2010, 09:02
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dokiyoki wrote:
NewSc2 wrote:
Could you explain a little more about how you boosted your Verbal? Mostly re-doing SC, or practicing CR, or? Did some things start to click the 2nd time around?



Yes, Please throw some light on things that clicked the 2nd time.



I've always done pretty well under untimed conditions. Here's my breakdown from the OG12 book (first pass):

RC: 89% correct
CR: 92%
SC: 83%
Both math sections were > 95%

I knew I had to work on my SC (at the end, I've read the MGMAT SC book 3-4 times) and if I read a bit more on random articles and white papers, I would probably do better on RC. During most of my CATs, I was averaging in the low 40s for verbal. I think the 38 was somewhat a fluke, yet at the same time, 44 was as well. I'm probably a 42 verbal guy... somehow I just got lucky. (I do want to say that the 2nd time around, I saw 2 (!) exactly same question as in the first GMAT exam--hush...)

One tip I have is to do more reviewing than working on problems. That helped me in the end (especially CR and SC).
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 22 Sep 2010, 00:28
adalfu wrote:
dokiyoki wrote:
NewSc2 wrote:
Could you explain a little more about how you boosted your Verbal? Mostly re-doing SC, or practicing CR, or? Did some things start to click the 2nd time around?



Yes, Please throw some light on things that clicked the 2nd time.



I've always done pretty well under untimed conditions. Here's my breakdown from the OG12 book (first pass):

RC: 89% correct
CR: 92%
SC: 83%
Both math sections were > 95%

I knew I had to work on my SC (at the end, I've read the MGMAT SC book 3-4 times) and if I read a bit more on random articles and white papers, I would probably do better on RC. During most of my CATs, I was averaging in the low 40s for verbal. I think the 38 was somewhat a fluke, yet at the same time, 44 was as well. I'm probably a 42 verbal guy... somehow I just got lucky. (I do want to say that the 2nd time around, I saw 2 (!) exactly same question as in the first GMAT exam--hush...)

One tip I have is to do more reviewing than working on problems. That helped me in the end (especially CR and SC).


Lucky You :)
Thanks & Congratulations once again!
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 22 Sep 2010, 03:16
Hi there
I need some advise. I did my exam yesterday and I was able to score only 290 and I am really upset and shocked. Could you please tell me if I have to take time and master it before going for the exam. Looks like I need to improve a lot. I need more than double the marks that I have scored. Please advise . How to improve the marks drastically. please.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770) [#permalink] New post 22 Sep 2010, 20:10
sivsrinivas wrote:
Hi there
I need some advise. I did my exam yesterday and I was able to score only 290 and I am really upset and shocked. Could you please tell me if I have to take time and master it before going for the exam. Looks like I need to improve a lot. I need more than double the marks that I have scored. Please advise . How to improve the marks drastically. please.


The only thing I can say to you is that you must practice more problems. Go through the OG 11 and OG 12 books twice (each) and spend about 50% reviewing (by reviewing, I mean understand WHY the OTHER choices are incorrect) and 50% working on the problems... then come back to me and let me know how you score. Don't even schedule an exam date (or at least schedule one 1-2 months ahead) until you finish these books.
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Re: Ok I'm Done! (730 to 770)   [#permalink] 22 Sep 2010, 20:10
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