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Using Your Mobile Phone to Prepare for the GMAT [#permalink]
27 Feb 2013, 20:10
My two favorite free mobile apps to help with GMAT preparation are GMAT Pill’s GMATPratice and GMAT Club’s app. As busy professionals/students with packed schedules from work, classes, spending time with friends and family, extracurriculars, etc. we are always on the go and struggling to make the most of our time. With pending GMAT exam dates, we have additional stress that hovers over us. As we want to maximize our time on studying before the GMAT exam, how do we maximize our studying?
That’s what I was asking myself as a young professional living in NYC and working in consulting. So about a month or two before my scheduled GMAT exam, I wanted to take as many questions as possible whenever I had a free moment and what better way on the mobile phone?
The 2 Best GMAT Apps:
1) GMAT Pill’s “GMATPractice” App
2) GMATClub’s “GMAT**” App
Here’s a breakdown of each:
GMAT Pill’s GMATPractice app
As an iPhone user, I first discovered GMAT Pill’s app called GMATPractice while searching for free quant and verbal questions in the Apple app store. The main features include a time clock to put the heat on for answering questions, drills to quickly run bit-sized questions/concepts, and a buzzing feedback mechanism when I answered the question incorrectly. Pavel would have been happy --I was getting trained like a dog to get the answers correct to avoid the buzz on my phone. There are a bunch of free questions in the app but the feature I liked the best was the discussion feature below the written explanation. I could write on the DISQUS comments if I needed further explanation and usually received feedback within 1-2 days. The explanations also included guided video explanation on how to tackle the problem, eliminate wrong answer choices and conceptually think through the problem but it seemed like I had to pay for those videos, boo. The app does require 3G or wi-fi connection in order to see the answer explanations but the plus side is that I managed to see a few free video explanations in another subsection of the app. Note: to all GMATpractice app users out there, the top right hand corner has a metal gear side to set the preference and to help navigate around the site and download free GMAT video explanations – that took me awhile to understand but it seems intuitive enough.
GMAT Club's GMAT** app
As I was looking for other GMAT preparation mobile apps I found GMAT Club’s GMAT** app as it provides 111 quant questions; OG tracker that gave me a breakdown of hard, medium easy questions; flashcards function that I didn’t quit understand how to use or topics that I didn’t think were that relevant (but then again I am sure could be useful if I played around with it more); and a resource library that linked me to study plans, FAQs, other test prep companies, MBA tips, etc. – this last part of the app, I did not pay as much attention as I felt GMAT Club was looking to promote the awesome paid app called GMAT Toolkit.
Pros for the GMAT** app: timing
My favorite part of the free app was having a resource of really hard quant questions at my fingertips. Questions were roughly half PS and half DS and it had a handy timer that really helped me gauge the length of time it took to answer each one. When I was answering questions for more than 90 secs, the time clock turned yellow and made me push harder to finish faster. For questions that were taking longer than 2 minutes, the clock turned red and it helped replicate real scenarios for the test in trying to answer quant questions less than 2.5 minutes.
Pros for the GMAT** app: feedback
After submitting my answer to the question, I received immediate feedback from the app telling me if I got the answer right or wrong. In cases that I got a question wrong, the phone vibrated and the right answer with an explanation was listed below. What is helpful is the app provides a great filtering mechanism to show questions unanswered, so how many more I need to finish up, and questions answered incorrectly, so I can review ones I did incorrectly. You can also use the filter to see which questions took longer to answer so you can review those concepts at a later stage.
Pros for the GMAT** app: availability
Where I valued the app the most, was the ability to answer these questions on my daily commute to work. They say that Americans spend on average approximately 45 minutes to and from work per day, but what better way to maximize that time of just sitting around then cramming a few questions in – especially when life gets hectic a bit hectic to study. You can still answer the questions underground in the subway and still receive feedback to answers when no live connection to 3G was available – that app function felt awesome.
Having apps to help me study seems like a great tool to have as I pretty much always have a phone on me, and I can study whenever it is convenient. I was able to use the mobile apps while waiting for the subway/bus/plane or even in the subway or plane when there was no connection to the Internet. Secretly, I also even snuck out during lunch and crammed in a few questions on my iPhone without having to take my OG book with me. While these apps, do not necessary substitute normal GMAT preparation, using these mobile apps definitely allows me to practice during occasions that I typically wasn’t able to. By playing around with these apps, I was able to get a sense of where I was in my studies in situations that was not available to me say a few years ago. I say these apps are good tools to study with and use for supplemental reasons, but won’t replace the old fashion online or pen/paper GMAT exam preparation.