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What to do? Plummeting scores in 3 attempts

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What to do? Plummeting scores in 3 attempts [#permalink] New post 18 Sep 2005, 14:02
My first attempt at the GMAT left me with a 670 (Q44,V38). Nine months, a Princeton Review book and the Kaplan GMAT CD later, I scored 660 (Q36,V45). This was a bit unexpected, as I spent the greatest amount of time working on my quant score. Immediately after the 660, I purchased a Kaplan Math Workbook. Over the last 3 weeks, I completed every problem in the book. My math comprehension has grown tremendessly. On the way home from work, my wife would read problems to me (many in the advanced sections), and I would work them out in my head and explain them to her. Yesterday, I took the GMAT for what I hoped would be the last time. With my new math knowledge, and hope for a repeat of the V45, I expected a score in the 710-730 range. Instead, I was blindsided by a 600 (Q37,V35)! How can this happen? Unlike my other attempts at the GMAT, I actually felt like I knew the answers to the math. I guessed on the last 3 or 4 questions because I didn't manage my time well (I checked my work on the first 25 problems and noted on my scrap paper whether I "knew" I had the answer right or if I was just guessing). How can my score drop so much after I put so much effort into preparing for the exam? What should I do now? Will taking the GMAT a 4th time look bad on applications? I'm really not satisfied with a 670, but I'm not sure that I want to risk scoring below 670 again. My understanding is that schools only have access to the 3 most recent attempts.

Please help!

Thanks!
Christopher
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 [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2005, 06:14
Hey,

There is a possibility that you over stressed the GMAT. I know that it is extremely hard not to stress out about it, but everytime you stress out..take a deep breath and just tell yourself it is just a test. Maybe you just had a bad test day. Take a few days off, regroup and go at it again. If you feel that you are getting your arms around it, you can scheduled your exam while everything is still fresh.

From your comments, it seems that you may have just had a bad day.

In terms of the number of times that you have taken the exam, I'm not quite sure if each score shows up...I heard only the last three show up.
Anyone want to shed some light on this?
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 [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2005, 08:57
Straight from ETS' site:

Only scores from the your three most recent test dates within the last five years will be reported. If you have taken the test more than three times within the last five years, you may not request scores from an earlier test date. If you took the test longer than five years ago, you will not have access to your testing record online.
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 [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2005, 09:33
Does that mean I would no longer be able to use my first score on applications, or just that ETS will not include that score on the official report they send to the schools?

Has ETS changed the way it scores the GMAT? I really do not understand how my score dropped so far (especially since I felt like I did better on this one than any of the others).

I'm applying to Harvard, Cornell and Tuck. I'm a reapplicant at Cornell (was admitted for 2005 but had to turn down the acceptance) and, as such, would like to apply there early to show I'm still highly interested in their program. Round 1 ends Oct 3 for Cornell and Oct 11 for HBS. When ETS says once per calendar month, that means I can retake the exam on Oct 1, correct?

Thanks for your help and advice!
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 [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2005, 21:47
Any GMAT exam beyond 3 will not be sent as part of the score report. I am sure you could still use it on your application, not sure how you would 'prove' you scored it since ETS sends the 'official' score report and it doesnt seem like they would vouche for you.

Yes, you can take a GMAT per calendar month. so you could theoretically take it on the 31st of a month and then the next day on the 1st.

as for calibration, not sure if they tweaked their algorithm.

good luck to you.
  [#permalink] 19 Sep 2005, 21:47
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What to do? Plummeting scores in 3 attempts

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