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# 10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do?

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Intern
Joined: 13 Jul 2013
Posts: 5

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10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do? [#permalink]

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17 Jul 2013, 11:31
Hello Guys,

I have scheduled my GMAT on next 28th and at this moment I'm ... well.. really confused. This is going to be my first time and my target is to hit 700. Being said that, it now even sounds ridiculous to myself after I've completed my 4th Practice test today.

I've been preparing for 10 weeks [avg 2/hrs/day after full-time job]. 3 weeks ago, I took my first GMATPrep and scored 610. Then I immediately registered for the test as I was confident to improve my score by 100 points in following 4 weeks [I've taken leave from office for these last 15 days to fully prepare for GMAT]. Anyway, I took 3 practice tests over last 14 days and here are the scores:

05 July - 800score - 480
14 July - Master Gmat free test- 470 (29Q, 24V)
17 July - GMAT Pill free test - 410 (26Q, 22V) [this one had some internet connectivity problem which affected my score by 20% I believe]

Problems identified:

1. On each of the mock test, I ran out of time in Verbal section and had to hurry for last 10 questions.
2. BIG PROBLEM: I'm always finding it difficult to bring my concentration/focus to exam questions in the beginning few minutes.
3. The reading comprehensions are eating up a lot of time.. no idea how to deal with this
4. I suck at DS big time. I really do.
5. I have poor skills on Probability+permutation/combination+Venn

Strong areas:

1. Geometry - It hardly beats me
2. SC - Doing better than I myself expected
3. Never having problems with Quant timing

Weird issues:

1. I find most of the OG materials easier compared to other practice materials. Even the GMATPrep CAT1 also appeared much easier compared to ANY other tests I've taken.

2. I can answer the CR & RC problems almost effortlessly when I practice using books; but the opposite happens in the tests.

Action course for next 10 days [exam is on 28-July]:

1. Take the following gmat practice tests one every other day for next 8 days:

800score - 20 July
MGMAT [free one] - 22-July
Kaplan [free one] - 24-July
Official GMATPrep 2 - 26-July
1/2 Gmatclub test - in between of time permits.

I hope taking these these will help me to get the pace right and build enough stamina. Also, I hope to build some confidence hopefully by scoring better in MGMAT and GMATPrep as those are expected to provide 'more accurate' estimate.

2. I'll not try anymore practice questions in these remaining days except for completing the OG verbal.

3. I feel I must take a break from study for a full day tomorrow and also the day before the big day.

Questions to you guys here:

1. Should I spend more time on improving my quant skills with Probability+permutation+Venn etc? Is it worth the time considering the very little preparation time left for me?

2. What do you think.. what could be the main reason of my poor test scores? I'm so frustrated today that I can't really find any explanations why I'm miss-hitting so many questions! Sometimes I find myself telling that the test-taker companies have made those free diagnostic tests extra difficult so that people enroll to their coaching programs! [I guess it's false consolation only?] Anyway, do you think MGMAT and GMATPrep2 will get better results?

3. What can I do to improve my concentration at the beginning of the test?

4. Hitting 700 score looks like a distant Star to me at this moment - so I've stopped totally to think about that. Am I doing the right thing?

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Re: 10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do? [#permalink]

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17 Jul 2013, 11:57
Actually all ur test scores are in similar range apart from gmat prep that you took 3 weeks ago... Not sure which course/material are you following but it appears to be doing no good for you..

Looking at the breakup you have scope to improve in both areas. If its an option, postpone the test. Sit back, and work on your concepts..

If not, then cut down on practice tests, and instead focus on reviewing concepts and solving problems on those concepts... Leave permutation/combination/probability.. Investing that time elsewhere would be far more fruitful at this stage...
Just analyze your previous tests to see where u falter the most..

Remember, concepts will help.. Too many practice tests won't.
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Intern
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Re: 10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do? [#permalink]

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25 Jul 2013, 13:37
Thanks a lot for taking time out to reply, Vips0000 . I really appreciate your help! Here I'll explain my progress over last 7 days after I created this post.

Totally devastated, I decided to go through the basics again and re-read all MGMAT math strategy guides and MGMAT SC guide. While going through the Math basics, I was wondering if I had missed some of these materials earlier! Indeed I deed! I entirely missed its Number Properties Guide previously [I guess I got that portion covered by other random practice materials]. It definitely indicates indiscipline in preparation - I must admit. Anyway, on 24-July I took a full-fledged MGMAT Free CAT1 on and scored 620 [Q45 V31]. After scoring so many below-500's, this 600+ really made be delighted [I know many people will laugh]!

In the meantime, I have completed free GMATClub tests on two separate sitting and the scores are Q33[38%] & V37[84%]. I'm not quite sure what exactly do they stand overall. I found the GMATClub Quant very difficult and the Verbal easy. In fact I would not have been surprised if my quant score went further down. On the other hand, I'm disappointed that I could not hit 40 on Verbal. Can somebody tell me if the free GMATClub verbal test is really easier than standard test?

My strategy for remaining 2 days: Apparently, my weak area is quant [specifically DS and more specifically Number Properties+Probability], so I just plan to go through the very basics of maths again just to make sure I don't make any silly mistakes. I still have one GMATPrep test left for the penultimate day. I'll go through that on 27th.

Suggestion required: Is it a good idea to go through the whole DS section of OG Quant Review 2nd Ed [I'm yet to complete those] tomorrow [considering my exam is 2 days later]?
Also, what can I do to hit 3-4 more questions correctly with verbal [I really want wish I could do anything with it as verbal scores weight higher in overall scorers!]

Any suggestions will be highly appreciated! Thanks in advance for your time!

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Re: 10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do? [#permalink]

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25 Jul 2013, 22:30
I see you only have a couple of days to go. Read this post by VeritasPrepKarishma ref changes in the Verbal Section.possible-reasons-for-unexpected-verbal-scores-156586.html
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Status: Working on reaching 700th Heaven!
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Joined: 19 Jul 2013
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GMAT Date: 06-30-2014
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Re: 10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do? [#permalink]

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26 Jul 2013, 07:47
I’ll give you the same advice my GMAT instructor gave me. DO NOT TAKE IT IF YOU ARE NOT READY. PERIOD. Just pay the extra \$\$ to reschedule for another day instead of wasting money and getting a score you’re not proud of. Your nerves will get the best of you if you feel unprepared vs. if you take it on a day where you feel confident.

That’s just what I think. It’s up to you. But I wish you the best of luck if you decide to take it!

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Director
Status: Done with formalities.. and back..
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Kudos [?]: 653 [0], given: 23

Location: India
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Schools: Olin - Wash U - Class of 2015
WE: Information Technology (Computer Software)
Re: 10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do? [#permalink]

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27 Jul 2013, 15:58
Glad that you were able to find out the problem in earlier preparation, and started covering the items skipped earlier (Number properties ...wonder how :D )

Anyway, if you see once u covered an area you could score much higher than your previous mocks.. thats an indication. Your lack of preparation accounts for your low scores not your ineligibility to crack the exam.

So.. going back to my first advise.. if you got time in hand, postpone it. clear your concepts, practice... and BANG.
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Re: 10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do? [#permalink]

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30 Jul 2013, 10:27
First of all, I will thank you all who have taken time out to respond to my post - Vips0000, MzJavert and keikerz . Your words are wise and your judgements have been spot on.

Yesterday I took my GMAT and scored a shocking 580 [Q44 V27]. I am so annoyed with myself thinking why I even bothered to take the test without adequate preparation. This was obvious...wasn't it? I took a 15 day break from my work just for this test and boy... no one could have wasted it in a better way. As you may figure out from my earlier posts.. I was all over the places during these days and I totally screwed things up for myself. Why? Because I had NO proper planning. 15 full days days are enough for many people to improve 40-50 or even 100 points given that they have proper planning.

Also, one confession I must make - on the last week of my preparation I decided to ride my luck. It was a monumental mistake. Although some of you have quite knowledgeably advised me not to take the test unless I was prepared, I was dumb enough not to listen to the advice. One reason behind my decision was that I was confident to hit 620 depending on my skills. Therefore, I decided to test my luck as well [since I have read several stories where people wanted to just cancel their scores after the exam but somehow managed to score 700+]. Boy wasn't it a wrong thinking

I got a 44 on Quant which I would say just decent. I had a strange experience with quant... As far as I can remember - more than 50% of my questions were on number properties. More strangely, well over 3/4 of these were on exponents, divisibility, odd-even etc. And to my relief, I was given only ONE question on probability and NONE from combinatorics and remainders! Weird! In the 5 practice tests I took, I never faced anything with this much disproportionate distributions; I don't think I heard of such distribution either. I was wondering the whole time what was happening [and not to mention.. why was it happening]!

I really think verbal should have gone much better. But the strange question patterns on quant deeply affected me as I was convinced that I had bombed the test. TO add to that, within 10 minutes of the beginning of verbal test I was having considerable aching on my shoulders. This was something unexpected as I never had aching problem during the other full length tests. In the final half and hour, I literally had to focus more on massaging my shoulders with one hand and use the another to somehow operate the mouse. Apart from the pain, the verbal didn't need to present any more surprises! I had severe problems to read RC as I had not been able to focus my mind.

I think the fear of going through this whole exhaustive gmat preparation played the biggest role why I wanted to ride on luck. Now it's over and I have to retake GMAT. I would appreciate any suggestion on this new thread I've created @ 'Ask GMAT Experts' forum page

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Re: 10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do?   [#permalink] 30 Jul 2013, 10:27
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# 10 days to go... Poor mock scores ... what to do?

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