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Updated: 710 (Q49, V37) 94%, AWA 6.0

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Updated: 710 (Q49, V37) 94%, AWA 6.0 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 17:20
And its my turn.... just came back from the test center and am very, very pleased to report that I got:

710:94%ile, Q49:90%ile, V37:83%ile.

First off, a big thank you to my wife who endured my crazy anti-social, anti-house keeping study schedule for 2-1/2 months and allowed me to do this. Every weekend during the last 2 months I have been at home studying while she made sure that I was not disturbed!! I owe this to her for her support all along... :P


Needless to say, I was very happy when I saw the report on the screen: 49Q + 37V. This was my second attempt at the GMAT; the first in 09/04 was with a 5-day prep.. ended with 620. Not sure why I did it that way then... but I chalk it up to experimentation.

The final verbal score was a bit lower than my target but ... not complaining. My target school is Univ of California, Berkeley part-time MBA, Haas school of business, so pretty much within range I think.

I was dreading the fact that I will have to come back and tell everyone that I didn't score well... but thankfully won't have to do that. Going from a point where I was not consistent at all to a 710 just shows that a lot of hard work and sweat will do wonders.

First off a big salute to Praet and the founders who have formed this great community of people who share and help each other to do better; It was uplifting as well as motivating to read posts about people who did well, and posts about people who didn't do so well. The key was how people rallied around someone who was disappointed with his/her performance and encouraged to give it another shot..... Thanks everyone for the continual support and encouragement.

With a lot of help from ps_dahiya, GMATT73, rhyme, Iced_tea, Yezz, Fig, walletless, willget800, laxieqv, futuristic, gmatmba, necromonger, u2lover, kevincan, gmacvik, rkatl, pelihu, lan583 and a lot of others who not only helped me to learn every aspect of the test and its arcane concepts, but also endured my stupid questions and answers as well.

Long-Term Test Prep:
Started preparing on the 2nd of June; registered for the test and then started preparing, as it set a goal for myself. I work full time and volunteer at a business institute which wasn't an ideal situation but decided to make do with it. Initially had setup my test for Oct 2nd, but pre-poned it as I was worried that I might peak too early and also because I wanted to get an afternoon slot. Initial appointment was 8:00am on Oct 2nd; but after looking at my level of awareness @ 8:00am, thought it would be better to move it to the afternoon. Set the new test date to Sep 25th @ 12:15pm. Gave me 2-1/2 months or so of prep time.
Due to work and other committments, decided to get up early and study. Got up everyday @ 5:00am and studied for about 1-1/2 hrs. Went to work and started studing again at 7:00pm for about 3-hours. Ended up with about 4.5-5 hours consistently everyday over a period of 2-1/2 months excluding the 4 day vacation :-)

Took a total of 16 tests with about half with AWA. Followed Rhyme's advice of quality over quantity... MGMAT was tougher, Princeton inline and Cambridge verbal just brutal (especially the CRs). GMATPrep and PowerPrep were inline. And believe it or not the first PowerPrep test score was 710 and my last is 710. Talk about consistency.... Hmm.. on second thoughts maybe all the prep didn't help much?? :stupid Who am I kidding... without the prep I would probably score a lot lower than this...

MGMAT SC was a god-send to me.. a non-native english speaker, who didn't much care about what a dangling modifier was about 3 months ago. But things changed and MGMAT was very-very helpful. Can't say the same about the other 5 math books or the RC/CR. Diagramming didn't do much for me; took a lot of time and didn't help too much.

The only thing that helped me the most on the CR was :
* reading the question first,
* writing the conclusion in your own words &
* using a {A, B, C, D, E} grid and cross out the answers to arrive at the smallest possible set of answer choices.

SC was also the same:
* Read the sentence
* Cross out the options from the {A-E} grid, and then work on the narrow choices.

Had the worst time on DS. A week before my test my DS just crashed and started getting very stressed out about how I would do. Worked on about 6 DS sections from the 1000DS. Seemed to help, but again used GMATPrep for all PS + DS practice.

My PS thankfully was pretty ok, and after making sure I avoided silly mistakes at all costs, results seemed to get better.

Used the following materials :

a. OG11
b. OGQR
c. OGVR
d. Cambridge Test Prep software
e. Princeton Review software
f. Power Prep
g. GMATPrep.
h. Manhattan SC + CR/RC + 5 Math
i. Princeton Review
f. Kaplan (limited use).

Test Practice Scores:
PPrep Jul 08th, 2006: 710 (Q48, V40)
GPrep Jul 16th, 2006: 670 (Q44, V38)
GPrep Aug 12th, 2006: 690 (Q48, V38)
PPrep Aug 20th, 2006: 700 (Q49, V36)
CPrep Aug 26th, 2006: 660 (Q46, V39)
CPrep Aug 27th, 2006: 690 (Q48, V39)
GPrep Aug 30th, 2006: 730 (Q44, V47) Repeats on Q&V.
MGMAT Sep 10th, 2006: 640 (Q42, V35)
PrRev Sep 10th, 2006: 690 (Q44, V41)
GPrep Sep 13th, 2006: 710 (Q49, V39)
MGMAT Sep 16th, 2006: 650 (Q43, V36)
GPrep Sep 17th, 2006: 770 (Q50, V46) Repeats on Q&V.
MGMAT Sep 19th, 2006: 700 (Q46, V40)
PrRev Sep 23rd, 2006: 680 (Q45, V39) ??Strange Result??
GPrep Sep 24th, 2006: 770 (Q50, V45) Repeats on Q&V
Gprep Sep 24th, 2006: 750 (Q48, V44) Repeats on Verbal
GMAT Sep 25th, 2006: 710 (Q49, V37)

I used an excel sheet to manage the various scores and draw a trend as to where I was going; used the mean+std. devn to calculate high and low end. I hit the higher end of my scores... Expected max score was 716, ended up with a 710. Also used weightage for each test type based on difficulty. But the weights were assigned based on my understanding... no justification for them.

Last week Pre-TEST Prep:
I started my last week of preparation by going through all my SC error logs and CR error logs. In hindsight I didn't pay too much attention to RC as I kinda had a feeling that RC is RC whatever you do.. its still the same. As necromonger put it, the bang-for-the-buck came from SC. Put in a lot of work understanding the SC aspects... I knew all the 7 types of errors, but as I didn't pay attention to the meaning communicated by the sentences, I used to make silly mistakes. But the last week of going over my OG11 SC errors helped me to refine that aspect. For the last week, my DS + PS practice came from taking a lot of tests from MGMAT, Princeton and GMATPrep. Followed necromonger's advice to take GMATPrep as much as possible in the last 2 days and it seems to have paid off. Was very very comfortable with the software and any pre-test jitters vanished once I started off on the first couple of questions of quant on the test. Took GMATPrep twice yesterday and solved about 5 questions of each type from the 15-practice question sets in the GMAT Prep software.

The test was scheduled today at 12:15pm (PST time, California). Got up around 6:30am and started to read up on all the MGMAT basics books and my SC+Math+CR notes. Completed that by about 11:00am and started to get worried whether I will make it in time, but eventually made it there on time.
Contrary to some advice I decided to use a Red-bull (sugarless) to push myself a little along with a cereal fruit-bar . Seemed to keep me focussed. Not that it'll work for all.. just a data point.


AWA:
Test started well, AWA issue and argument went ok.. lost some interest in the argument when writing. The topics were ok, something about ethics for issue and employee survey and information sessions for argument.

Quant
Quant started prety well.. and kept on going well until the end. Saw 2 probability questions, a bunch of factors/divisors and some very simple ones which scared the *&#@ out of me... maybe I was bombing. But ignored that feeling and finished. Finished the last question with about 5 seconds to spare.

Verbal
The verbal started off ok for the first couple of questions and then hit an the second CR on the 5 or 6th question. Took my own sweet time and forgot the clock. After that point I was always trying to catch up... and never did. Guessed the last one with 5 seconds to spare. RCs were ok lenght and topic wise. There was 1 bold face CR early on and then another one about circular reasoning. Never could address them completely and decided to move on.


Overall was a performance with which I am pleased... wanted to break into the 7xx zone. I am not the smartest kid on the block, but had to put my nose down and improve my score from a 620 (Q42, V34) to a 710(Q49, V27) in about 2-1/2 months.
Thanks again to everyone who helped me through this and encouraged me....
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Last edited by haas_mba07 on 12 Oct 2006, 18:07, edited 3 times in total.
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 17:54
Wow!!!! BIG Congrats man....time to take a couple of shots and move on to the apps.
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 17:56
Let me be one of the first guys to congratulate you.......

Fantastic score haas_mba.....

Congratulations !!! :-D...
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 18:21
congrats haas-mba07! That is a great score and I want to thank you b/c your posts helped me out a lot. Best luck with the rest of your application process
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 18:43
Congratulations!
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 18:47
Congratulations. Thats an excellent score. I am sure you can make it to Haas School as well. Good luck.
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 18:54
Awesome. Your hard work has paid off! It's amazing that you have the strength to post such a detailed account right away. This is a big step towards the ultimate goal.
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 19:28
Awesome score...49Q!!!
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 20:00
Congratulations........

Good luck with your application.
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 20:19
good job...congrats !!!
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 20:52
HAAS BRO!...U R GOING TO HAAS :lol: :lol:

CONGRATS!
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 22:04
Excellent score ! :D... Congratulations haas-mba07 ! :D :)

Thanks also for your debriefing :D :) U did a lot of practice tests before the GDay... I happened that u did a test even 2 times a day :) All this hard work paid off !! :D.... Very good :D
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 22:08
Congrats Man)) Awesome score
good luck with applications)
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 22:21
haas, awesome job...good to see you crack a score you deserve.
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 [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2006, 22:32
congrats haas... this is a great score indeed !
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 [#permalink] New post 26 Sep 2006, 02:04
Man...........u are just the best example for hard work and consistency.

u earned it deserved it and got it..........god is just and he pays those who waits and work hard.

take some rest relax and enjoy your victory with your family,they deserve it . make sure they have fun with you.

good luck with the application.

one more thing , now as you getting closer to Haas school of business.

what is your name or nick name at least ...we all earned this. :lol:
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710 (Q49, V37) 94% Long Post,have coffee before reading!!!!! [#permalink] New post 26 Sep 2006, 02:23
OMG, Haassss, I'm so happy for you. It's time to Party!!!!!!!!!

I was waiting for you and some other people to come back with their good news since I knew you were taking the exam this week :wink: and I know 2 other people who are taking it as well, so many good luck to them as well :-D

Good luck with your app.

You know what I had to come and edit my post coz I got so excited when I saw your post with the 710, that I went straight to reply and then read your entire post. And then I was like duh uvs, he is going to Haas and thats why he has had his name for so long... LOL! :wink:
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 [#permalink] New post 26 Sep 2006, 04:02
Thanks so much everyone. It was just this kind of encouragement and support that pulled it through. :P

Good luck to those who are currently going through the test... I am very sure that the hard work will pay off. :-)

I am a firm believer now... hard work never goes waste.
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Re: 710 (Q49, V37) 94% Long Post,have coffee before reading! [#permalink] New post 26 Sep 2006, 06:09
And for yezz and others who wanted a formal intro regarding my nickname/name...

Name is Piyush... techie, Indian, work in a semiconductor design company as a logic design engineer. Silicon Valley (Santa Clara). And no I don't work for Intel... :P

I should've done this 3 months ago, but .. oh well... better late than never.

Last edited by haas_mba07 on 26 Sep 2006, 06:19, edited 1 time in total.
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 [#permalink] New post 26 Sep 2006, 06:14
Thats wonderful. I was waiting for your post. I knew you would do it.

Party hard buddy. :beer
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