I already started my preparation on November 15, 2011. But I would say that it wasn’t that successful due to a lot of stoppages (exams, family situations, etc.), procrastination, bad selection of study materials (Princeton Review 2012th edition), and an unrealistic plan (I thought I would be able to study for the GMAT in less than 30 days though I have never taken a standardized test in my whole life!) I ended up delaying my planned test day several times. Soon I realized that with the way things are going on, I won’t be able to take the GMAT ever. So I thought about changing the way I think towards the GMAT. And one of the ideas was to make use of this wonderful forum. I told myself why not to share my preparation journey with you so that you can encourage and motivate me, help me overcome procrastination, and give me some valuable advice about the plan, methods of studying, etc. Some background information:
I’m 22 years old, non native speaker of English. My goal is to pursue a PhD in MIS in the States or Canada. Based on that, my GMAT targeted score is 650+. Higher is better though I prefer to be realistic, scoring over 700 would be a hard task for me! Planned Test day:
This week I decided on a test day in an attempt to avoid additional procrastination. I’m planning to take the GMAT on November 8, 2012. So I have slightly less than 70 days.What I have achieved until now:
(November 15, 2011 till December 25, 2011
) I used the OG12
and The Princeton Review “Cracking the GMAT
” 2012th edition. I finished the Qaunt section but didn’t practice much from the OG12
. I did questions 1-147 of the PS! No DS! And my accuracy was catastrophic not mentioning that I was solving blindly!
(March 21, 2012 till May 7, 2012
) I decided that I shouldn’t waste the OG12
questions before having a good grasp of the basic concepts. My plan was to start with the “theory”, take a practice test, and then work on my weak areas through practicing from the OG. So I started by revising the Quant part of the Princeton Review and solved the 4 Qaunt bins at the end of the book then moved to the Verbal section, did the practice questions that come with the GMAT PREP software. I was eager to know where I was standing so I took the OG diagnostic test (scored almost average on all sections) but I needed a more accurate result to gauge my actual level so I took the GMATPREP 1 and ended up getting 480 (32Q, 25V) I was disappointed as I was expecting something around 550!
At this point I noticed that the method I followed was wrong and that the Princeton Review isn’t going to guide me towards my desired 650+ score. This was a fact that I knew but always ignored. So I decided to buy the MGMAT study guides (fifth edition) in addition to the OG13 as I needed it to study for a new section this time, the IR!
(May 20, 2012 till July 5, 2012
) I started focusing on the Quant, the first thing I noticed is how important was to practice from the OG concentrating on one topic at once and not solving randomly. I studied everyday but a lot of things happened starting from July 5 and till September 1 that prohibited me from studying at the same pace! There was a time that I didn’t study for 2 continuous weeks!
But in general here is what I have accomplished until this time from the MGMAT:
1. Guide 1 - Fractions, Decimals, & Percents: All except chapter 7 (Extra FDPs) including related OG13 Q
2. Guide 2 - Algebra: All (except Extas – 3 chapters) including related OG13 Q
3. Guide 3 - Word Problems: did chapter 1 (Algebraic Translations) with the related OG13 Q
4. Guide 5 - Number Properties: did chapters 1 & 2 (Divisibility & Primes + Odds, Evens, Positives, & Negatives) with the related OG13 Q
5. Guide 6 – Critical Reasoning: did first 3 chapters
6. Guide 7 – Reading Comprehension: did first 3 chapters Plan:
What I’m planning to do is the following:
1. Start with the RC (4 days)
2. Move to the SC (8 days)
3. Back to CR (8 days)
4. Quant (20 days) I strongly believe it’s my strength
5. I’m planning to take a test every week, I have access to 6 MGMAT CATs and the 2 GMATPREP CATs
6. I’m a perfectionist guy, this is the reason I was spending a lot of time on each chapter and on each exercise! YOU should help me make sure that I get rid of that upon my journey :D
Looking forwards to hearing your opinions and ideas