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Thank you for creating such a great forum. First time poster been reading on and off for a month. Wanted to get really serious, and I think the only way to do that is to begin my story.
Took the GMAT in 2007 one year out of undergrad, where I majored in general Biology. Got a 540. Only after a Kaplan test prep in classroom course. Cannot say I would or would not recommend it. I think it would work for some, but honestly I think it was my lack of commitment that lead to my score, which is poor, but totally deserved.
Applied to some not so hot schools, got in to them and decided not to go.
Fast forward 3 years. I have finally gotten serious about the GMAT. Started with my old Kaplan books for about 2 months on and off studying as I work full-time and also have frequent family and friends that stay with me often to the demise of my study time. Found that I wasn't really improving that much, first 3 kaplan scores:
530, 520 and 560. Not so hot right?
Found this website, where they seem to recommend ManhattanGMAT test prep so I thought I would give it a try. Bought all the Quant books, plus SC, OG12, and Powerscore CR.
Currently I have been at quant for a month again, finished all MGMAT quant books late (Geometry didn't ship with the others), and am beginning to get comfortable with PS, but DS is still giving me a harder time. I have begun to keep an error log, and will use this come month 3. I am finding more and more that I am finding whether or not choices are sufficient, but often choose incorrectly between together or neither. I believe more DS practice is necessary and reviews of basic strategy from MGMAT guides. This is with only being about 55 DS Questions in to OG12, and I will probably try to finish all DS by the end of this weekend. 1/8/10-1/9/10
At the end of the quant I want to take a full length GMATPrep exam and see where I am quant-wise or maybe one of the free MGMAT exams, to gauge progress.
My plan is to finish quant at 1.5 months (around 1/13/10), and move back to verbal, where my main focus will be SC and CR, my RC was in the 80th Kaplan, and I'm not sure anything but repetition will help me personally with RC. I will hopefully spend 3-4 weeks on verbal, and then review and start taking full length tests to get the best practice.
Any thoughts on schedule? Best way to improve on DS? Let me know,
Last 3 days of prep, GDAY march 16th, target 710, what needs work : CR strengthen, DS number properties, and word problems. Doing all of the Qs from OG12, Manhattan, and 2nd edition guides on these 3 topics between today and sunday. Also 2 CATs left, MGMAT 6, and Kaplan CAT4, I will take the MGMAT6 sunday as I trust it more than kaplan as a predictor.
Actually I just read bb's post on going from 650 to 700, and I realized that I had bought PR 1012, and not used it yet! Fresh organized questions to practice with today. Kinda excited, does that make me a loser?
It seems you have a pretty good plan and it's all more about your commitment. keeping an error log - that's a good idea! Always ask yourself why? why did you get it wrong? I would recommend to post questions and you will find a lot of support and explanations from others. Dig deep in your mistakes - they are a key to your progress.
update, after one month of studying (approx) I took my first MGMAT untimed CAT and got a Q45. This was an increase from Q35 on Kaplan from only 1 month before! Very happy. Need to work on timing.