I took the test this past weekend and achieved my dream score...I would have been happy with a 700+ so imagine my surprise and elation when I actually got a 760!!!!! I have to thank the forum for my score and for the great advice that I've read on here the past 2 months. Finding this forum was seriously the turning point in my preparation.
So a little bit about my experience:
The first time I took the Gmat, I took a Kaplan course
. On top of that, I studied for another 3 months on my own. I did very well on the Kaplan
tests (from 650-720) and thought that I wouldn't have a problem on the real Gmat since I've heard that Kaplan
tests are harder. I also did a few questions here and there from the OG as well as the 800score.com practice exams. Overall I must have done about 10-15 practice tests. Powerprep scores were 740 and 750. I thought I was ready for the real thing.
Turns out the real test was harder than I expected...I felt very unprepared and NOT GOOD during the exam. Kaplan
just didnâ€™t prepare me well for the types of problems I saw on the exam. Lots of number theory problems in the quant section, and lots of very difficult sentence correction. I got a 690 that time and although it's a great score, I decided to study again to break the 700 barrier.
I decided that if I was going to start studying again, I would give it my all...Here was my preparation strategy for the next 2 months (during which, I had no life):
- Found the Gmatclub and began reading through the forum to gain tips on books, study strategies, etc. Was given great advice by people who had already taken the exam.
- Did as many gmatclub questions as I could each week. People on this forum post great questions and offer very smart solutionsâ€¦.you can learn from these people
-Bought the challenge package and took 13 of them. Challenge questions are harder than the real thing and are a great way to train your mind to think in a certain way. Also helped me build my confidence.
-Did OG 10
and 11 cover to cover, doing sets of 15 -20 problems timed. Kept an error log
and went back to review my mistakes afterwards
-Made flashcards of the math problems I got wrong.
-Bought the MGMAT Sentence Correction
book, worked through it (BEST SC book). Kaplan
did not do justice or give enough depth into SC....
-Worked through the CR sets in a Lsat book ...those are harder than the ones you'll see on the exam.
-Worked through Arco Reading comprehension for GMAT, LSAT, MCATS.
My exam was Sat morning at 9:00. I figured that I'd need to wake up at 6:30 to get ready, warm up with some problems, and travel to the test site by 8:30. To get my body use to functioning at such an early time in the morning, I woke up at 6:30 in the morning every day for the 5 days before the exam. I used this time in the morning to study, review notes, take a challengeâ€¦waking up so early was difficult at first, but regulating my sleep schedule so I was comfortable waking up so early was important.
The test day was uneventful. My exam was at the testing center I went to the first time around so I was very familiar with the environment. I tested my marker and pad before I went into the testing center to make sure they worked (impt!) and started my exam.
AWA wasnâ€™t too difficult and I went through that rather quickly. Next was the quant. I was very comfortable with the math questions and was able to see through some of the trickier problems on there. Problems were not as difficult as I expectedâ€¦easier than the GMAT Club Challenge problems and the ones ppl post on this site. Problems were harder than the OG though so definitely go beyond the OG if you want to do well in Quant. I saw a lot of overlapping set problems (was surprised about that), algebra, lots of number theory, one remainder problem, geometry, probability, and some combination problems (ie. How many ways to get from pt. A to Bâ€¦ Giddi posted a great explanation on thisâ€¦definitely review it to make sure you understand how to do this problem!) I didnâ€™t see any work, rate or SD questions. The math wasn't too bad though and I felt good about it afterwards. Also, I did see some very simple calculation problems in the middle of my exam..but I didnâ€™t stress about it b/c many people did mention that the test wouldnâ€™t always be adaptive.
Verbal was very straightforward. Started with some simple SCâ€™s and then came a RC. In total, I had 4 RC passagesâ€¦two of them were harder science ones that were very uninteresting so I had to plow through them. I think thatâ€™s where some of my mistakes came in. Otherwise, the CR wasnâ€™t so bad. I definitely think that all the studying I did with the MGMAT SC
book and the OG really paid off.
Iâ€™m so glad to finally have the Gmat behind me. Iâ€™ve been studying for this monster for 10 months now and itâ€™s been quite a long journey. I can honestly say though that Iâ€™ve learned a tremendous amount through this process. And I definitely agree with what other people have said about the Gmatsâ€¦itâ€™s doesnâ€™t necessarily test your â€˜knowledge,â€™ or ability to memorize but your thought process. When youâ€™re studying, imagine yourself training as you would for a sportâ€¦youâ€™re building up the muscle, strength, and acumen.
I have a couple more thoughts on what Iâ€™ve learned throughout this process in terms of studying strategy but Iâ€™ll leave that for another postâ€¦going to grab some grub now.
Good luck to all who are still working through this and thanks to all who have been so supportive!!