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Score isn't improving

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Score isn't improving [#permalink] New post 02 May 2012, 09:34
Hi,

I began my GMAT preparation one month ago.

I've been studying 6-8 hours a week and until now finished these resources:

- All MGMAT guides (finishing CR guide in the next two days);

- OG 12 (except 4 RC passages and many CR questions that i'm doing in the next two days);

- Kaplan Verbal Workbook (2 RC Tests and 3 CR Tests still available);

I haven't started with Verbal and Quant Review 2nd Edition.

I've done 5 CAT's:

- GMATPREP 1: 680 (Q49, V33) - Before i started
- Veritas Free: 650 (Q42, V37)
- MGMAT 1: 680 (Q47, V36)
- MGMAT 2: 740 (Q47, V44)
- MGMAT 3: 680 (Q47, V36)

I still got one moth till my GMAT but except a little improve in verbal, my scores aren't moving (I consider the Q42 and the V44 outliers).

The differences in the 3 MGMAT CAT's were that CR was low on the first and increased significantly and that SC was high and decreased significantly; RC was below 50% on all 3.

What should I do? I'm aiming 700+.

Thanks in advance.
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Re: Score isn't improving [#permalink] New post 02 May 2012, 10:51
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Dear ADN1988,

I happy to give my 2 cents here. :)

First of all, here's a one-month GMAT study plan I wrote:
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/1-month-gm ... -schedule/
You aren't starting from scratch, so that gives you a headstart. You might also skim over this three-month plan . . .
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/3-month-gm ... -students/
...designed for advanced students: you may find there some helpful resources & recommendations that you can incorporate into your next month of studying. You may find other posts on that blog helpful as well.

When you're hitting a ceiling like this, it probably means you have a reasonably good understand of GMAT content, but could stand to benefit tremendously from learning more GMAT strategy. For example, here's a free lesson on RC strategies:
http://gmat.magoosh.com/lessons/321-gen ... strategies

Here's a free lesson on a particularly useful math trick:
http://gmat.magoosh.com/lessons/311-dou ... nd-halving

Here are two practice questions
a) SC = http://gmat.magoosh.com/questions/1105
b) DS = http://gmat.magoosh.com/questions/929
For each of those, when you hit "submit", the next screen will have the video explanation. Each one of our 800+ GMAT questions has its own video explanation.

If you find these resources helpful, check out Magoosh. I believe the combination of resources we offer is exactly what you need to break through the ceiling you are now experiencing.

I hope all this is helpful. Please let me know if I can answer any specific GMAT questions.

Mike :)
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Magoosh Test Prep

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Re: Score isn't improving [#permalink] New post 02 May 2012, 12:35
After reviewing the exam I did today (the last one) I realized that:

- Verbal Section (SC): Careless mistakes;
- Verbal Section (RC): lack of focus + when I have to decide between two, I always choose the wrong one;
- Quant Section (600-700 bracket): careless mistakes
- Quant Section (700-800 bracket): 50% careless mistakes, 50% I understand the concepts tested but can't/take too long to reach the solution.

Any advice? Should I read any book or go for practice and review?

For quantitative section should I do Quant Review 2nd Edition or GMATclub tests and sigs?
And for Verbal?
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Re: Score isn't improving [#permalink] New post 02 May 2012, 14:07
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ADN1988 wrote:
After reviewing the exam I did today (the last one) I realized that:
- Verbal Section (SC): Careless mistakes;
- Verbal Section (RC): lack of focus + when I have to decide between two, I always choose the wrong one;
- Quant Section (600-700 bracket): careless mistakes
- Quant Section (700-800 bracket): 50% careless mistakes, 50% I understand the concepts tested but can't/take too long to reach the solution.
Any advice?

It's very interesting. The problem as you describe it is much more related to your attention skills than it is to any problem with cognition or test-taking abilities. It may be that Magoosh will help you get a bit faster on the 700-800 Quant questions and give you a bit more clarity with those final two RC answer choices. The juggernaut, though, is something that really no GMAT test prep source can give you: greater command of your attention and focus.

First of all, I would say, read these three blogs:
a) http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/overcome-g ... y-breathe/
b) http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/beating-gmat-stress/
c) http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/the-gmat-b ... g-picture/

OK, so you have a month to build your attention and focus skills so that you can perform at a higher level on the GMAT. It can be done, if you are up to the challenge. (1) No TV or videos games in the next month. You need to get your mind away from artificial "attention-magnets" so you can develop more conscious control. (2) Every waking moment of every day you should be breathing slowly and deeply, regardless of whatever else you may do (of course, you should get physical exercise every day, and during vigorous exercise, just breath the way your body needs --- that's the only exception to the "breathe slowly" advice). (3) Eat healthy --- avoid everything with "high fructose corn syrup." Avoid caffeine and energy drinks. Avoid alcohol and drugs. Drink 8+ glasses of water a day. You need to cleanse the brain's biochemistry. (4) Get adequate sleep, 8 hours a night every night. (5) Practice noticing details. Start in the most familiar environments: home, office, commute to work, friend's house, etc. Each day, or each time there, force yourself to notice one new thing you had never noticed before. (6) You might even skim an article or book about mindfulness (Jon Kabat-Zinn is one of the world's leading authorities on this.) ------- This is something of a "austerity diet" for the mind, because you have only a month to get to Jedi level in skills that are woefully underdeveloped in our post-modern electronic culture. Virtually everything about modern culture mitigates against the development of these skills.

If you could maintain these restrictions consistently for a month, they would develop your ability to focus. If you could live your whole life this way, it would enable you to command your attention & focus, giving you a decided edge in the business world and making you that much more effective in almost every other endeavor in your life. It's the edge that anyone could develop but which, in practice, almost nobody does in this day and age.

I know this is not the answer for which you were looking --- you just wanted me to tell you, work through one more GMAT prep book. That's what most people do. If you want the results that most people get, do what most people do. If you want extraordinary results, you must take extraordinary steps. Yes, do some more GMAT prep also ---- frankly, I think Magoosh would help you much more than the options you listed --- but whichever you pick, in a way that alone is just more of the same. If you want to break through the ceiling you are currently experiencing, that will require some radical changes, not just in how you think, but more in how you are.

That's my advice. Please let me know if you have any questions, or if there is anything which you would like me to clarify. Best of luck to you.

Mike :)
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Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

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Re: Score isn't improving   [#permalink] 02 May 2012, 14:07
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