Just wanted to share a quick story about my experience with test prep courses. I started studying for the GMAT about a year ago and enrolled in Manhattan GMAT a few months into the studying. I thought that the course was helpful in teaching the math concepts, but did little to really help with the actual test taking strategy. I took the test feeling mildly prepared and got a 640. I was beyond disappointed. I gave it another shot about a month later, thinking that the results of the first test could be attributed more to nerves than to ability, and got a 680. An improvement, but not the score I was looking for.
After being waitlisted at my top choice, I revisited the test one final time. I'm someone who needs a bit more direction and structure with studying, and I wanted to make sure I gave the test my best shot, so I enrolled in Kaplan advanced. From the beginning, the course keyed in on not only the test content, but also the strategies (mostly for quant). I already had a solid knowledge base from prior studying, but the Kaplan course was just what I needed to take it to the next level. I was testing in the mid 700's on their practice exams and ended up with a 740 (48Q/42V) on the real thing. I was beyond thrilled.
I post this to tell people that were in my position to consider the Kaplan course. I realize that it's pricey, but I really think it's worth it if you can swing it. It took over a year, but I finally got the score I wanted.
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