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3 weeks to my GMAT

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New post 27 Jun 2020, 01:55
I started my GMAT journey approximately 1 month ago.

I purchased the GMAT OG 2020 and the additional verbal and quantitative books as well.

Took the Diagnostics Test and was an average performer for all except below-average for SC and above-average for Reading Comprehension.

Just took my first GMAT Official Practice (after finishing all the questions - SC, on the OG).

My score is as 570.

Verbal: 24, Quantitative: 45

I have booked a GMAT exam on the 17 Jul.

My GMAT target is 650 because that is the minimum requirement for me to read Masters at the specific University.

Are there any strategies or tips for me to increase my current 570 to 650 within a span of 3 weeks? or it would be better for me to postpone my GMAT exam for another month or two?

Please advise.

Thanks!
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New post 27 Jun 2020, 02:46
Madwolf wrote:
I started my GMAT journey approximately 1 month ago.

I purchased the GMAT OG 2020 and the additional verbal and quantitative books as well.

Took the Diagnostics Test and was an average performer for all except below-average for SC and above-average for Reading Comprehension.

Just took my first GMAT Official Practice (after finishing all the questions - SC, on the OG).

My score is as 570.

Verbal: 24, Quantitative: 45

I have booked a GMAT exam on the 17 Jul.

My GMAT target is 650 because that is the minimum requirement for me to read Masters at the specific University.

Are there any strategies or tips for me to increase my current 570 to 650 within a span of 3 weeks? or it would be better for me to postpone my GMAT exam for another month or two?

Please advise.

Thanks!


Similar story for me as well. I have booked my exam for Aug 3 . Currently my level is Q47-49 and V30-31
I have a target of Q50-51 and V38-40 .
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New post 27 Jun 2020, 07:54
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Hello, Madwolf. Quite clearly, you stand to gain much more from improving your Verbal performance than your Quant, and at that mid-20s level, it is easier to make larger gains quickly. I would start by reading each of GMATNinja's beginners' guides to Verbal topics. You can find the RC one here, for instance, with links to the other two. Then, I would sit down with my OG and squeeze every last drop of analysis out of the Verbal questions I had missed. Look up each question you missed in the forum here and see what the community has to say about it. Sooner or later, you will start to notice patterns: the types of questions you tend to miss, the traps you fall into, the rules you might not know so well... Practice a few new questions on the side, small sets of 5-10, enough to put your newfound knowledge to the test. On some days, you might not attempt any new questions, but spend time reviewing instead. In 3 weeks' time, you would be surprised by how much you had gained in the way of understanding and confidence.

What you do not want to do is blitz through x questions a day, thinking that by its own virtue, practice makes perfect. You will not get any better through exposure to questions alone. You have to devote at least as much time to getting to the bottom of your thought processes and learning how the questions and answers are put together. Although 3 weeks is not a ton of time, it should be just enough for the kinds of gains you are seeking. If, in 2 weeks, you take another official practice exam and score well below your target score, say, no greater than a 620, then you may want to reassess, give yourself more time, and reschedule. Accept that you will never feel entirely ready to take the test. But do not be foolhardy. Your performance on official practice tests is the best indicator of your eventual performance on the real test, so just hoping for an extra 30-50 points is extremely unlikely to result in a desired outcome.

Put in the effort to earn the score you want. If you have further questions, you know how to lean on the community. Good luck.

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New post 27 Jun 2020, 08:29
Hi Andrew,

I really appreciate your reply and thank you.

With that, I'll work on my verbal and hope that it would improve.

Probably, I should aim for:

Quantitative: 45-47 (current at 45)
Verbal: 34-36 (current at 24)

Would need a big leap for my verbal.

And I'll be looking to do a mock exam every week, until 17 Jul.

Will read on the forum thread that you have provided, and work on my verbal.

Thanks!

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New post 27 Jun 2020, 10:11
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New post 27 Jun 2020, 14:35
Hi Madwolf,

Many Test Takers spend 3 months (or more) of consistent study time before they hit their 'peak' scores, so if you've studied for just 1 month, then you should not expect to have mastered any of the content yet. Statistically-speaking, raising this initial 570 to the point that you can consistently score 650+ will likely require at least another 1.5 - 2 months of consistent, guided study - and you'll have to make significant improvements to how you handle BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. Thankfully, the GMAT is a consistent, predictable Exam, so you CAN train to score at a higher level. By extension, you might want to push back your current Test Date.

Before I can offer you the specific advice that you’re looking for, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on how you've been studying and your goals:

1) How many hours do you typically study each week?
2) When you say that your minimum Score requirement is a 650, what does that mean exactly? Do you need at least a 650 just to apply to this one Program? Would a 650 guarantee you entry into the Program? What is the exact application deadline (and are there any later application Rounds?)?
3) Are you planning to apply to any other Programs?

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New post 28 Jun 2020, 06:36
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi Madwolf,

Many Test Takers spend 3 months (or more) of consistent study time before they hit their 'peak' scores, so if you've studied for just 1 month, then you should not expect to have mastered any of the content yet. Statistically-speaking, raising this initial 570 to the point that you can consistently score 650+ will likely require at least another 1.5 - 2 months of consistent, guided study - and you'll have to make significant improvements to how you handle BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. Thankfully, the GMAT is a consistent, predictable Exam, so you CAN train to score at a higher level. By extension, you might want to push back your current Test Date.

Before I can offer you the specific advice that you’re looking for, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on how you've been studying and your goals:

1) How many hours do you typically study each week?
2) When you say that your minimum Score requirement is a 650, what does that mean exactly? Do you need at least a 650 just to apply to this one Program? Would a 650 guarantee you entry into the Program? What is the exact application deadline (and are there any later application Rounds?)?
3) Are you planning to apply to any other Programs?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich


1) So far, I am spending about 2hrs a day during weekdays, and for weekends, about half a day. But for the past 3 weeks plus, I was just practicing on the OG, and then re-attempting my wrong questions after a few days, and seeing the solution if I do not get it the 2nd time.

2) The minimum entry requirement is 650. I have gotten a conditional offer of acceptance. I would need to achieve a score of 650 to enter. The deadline is probably October this year because I am starting semester in Jan 2021. Matriculation should be Oct/Nov.

3) I am not planning to apply to any other programs because the current program that I am applying for, is both my passion and interest. Can't see myself doing other programs.
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New post 28 Jun 2020, 15:20
Hi Madwolf,

If you are not facing an immediate application deadline, then the best move right now would likely be to push back your Test Date so that you have more time to hone all of the necessary skills needed to hit your Score Goal. There's certainly no 'harm' in taking the GMAT in 3 weeks, but you could potentially save some time, money and aggravation by paying to push back your Test Date now.

Since you've already received a conditional acceptance offer, I assume that you have been in direct contact with someone at that Program. Does that person expect to receive your Official GMAT Score in July? I ask because that Program's representatives clearly think that you're a strong Applicant, so they might not need for you to rush in a GMAT Score if the deadline is several months away.

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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New post 29 Jun 2020, 19:02
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Hi Madwolf,

I do think it’s a pretty tall order to improve your GMAT score by 80 points in just 3 weeks (especially with V27). Thus, if possible I’d push your test back a few months, so you have ample time to study. In any case, do you want some general advice on how to improve your GMAT quant and verbal skills?
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New post 29 Jun 2020, 21:14
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Hey Madwolf

Thanks for reaching out on the forum, it feels good to see you coming out and asking for advice.

Looking at your scores, I can say that you need significant improvement in both Verbal and Quant. Your preparation is lacking concept building which will bridge the gap between your current and target score.

Having said that, it will be a good idea to see if your GMAT date can be pushed by at least a month. This will give you sufficient time to prepare in a structured manner and do justice with your GMAT attempt.

We have helped more than 25,000 people in last 1 year in achieving their target of a good GMAT score. Maximum people attributed their success to the structured process which we suggested them. I suggest you break your preparation into 3 stages and follow the below plan:

    Stage – 1 --> Learn the concepts
    Stage – 2 --> Cement the concepts by practicing a sub-section in Isolation
    Stage – 3 --> Become test ready (practicing all the sub-sections together)


You can also analyse your ability topic-wise and skip stages if you are good in a topic, this will expedite your preparation even further.

I would be happy to explain this Strategy in detail and create personalized milestones for you on a quick call. Please select a time slot that works here.

Hope the above strategy get you to your target score

Karan
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New post 30 Jun 2020, 05:58
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi Madwolf,

If you are not facing an immediate application deadline, then the best move right now would likely be to push back your Test Date so that you have more time to hone all of the necessary skills needed to hit your Score Goal. There's certainly no 'harm' in taking the GMAT in 3 weeks, but you could potentially save some time, money and aggravation by paying to push back your Test Date now.

Since you've already received a conditional acceptance offer, I assume that you have been in direct contact with someone at that Program. Does that person expect to receive your Official GMAT Score in July? I ask because that Program's representatives clearly think that you're a strong Applicant, so they might not need for you to rush in a GMAT Score if the deadline is several months away.

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich


Thanks for the advise. I will reschedule my GMAT exam to the end of August, so that I have more time to improve my verbal scores.
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New post 30 Jun 2020, 05:59
ScottTargetTestPrep wrote:
Hi Madwolf,

I do think it’s a pretty tall order to improve your GMAT score by 80 points in just 3 weeks (especially with V27). Thus, if possible I’d push your test back a few months, so you have ample time to study. In any case, do you want some general advice on how to improve your GMAT quant and verbal skills?


Thank you! I have decided to reschedule my GMAT exam to the end of August.

From now until then, I will do more practise questions and hopefully, improve. Probably towards the end of Jul, I will do another mock exam to see if I have actually improved.

It would be great if you could provide some general advice so that I could learn. Appreciate it lots!
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New post 30 Jun 2020, 08:24
After taking the advise of many GMAT experts here, I would like to share my study plans here:

I will reschedule my GMAT exam from 17 Jul to 21 Aug. (That would give me 7 weeks to better prepare myself)

Week 1 (1 Jul - 8 Jul)

I will spend about 1hr a day, practising on Verbal Questions, using the GMAT Official Guide (Verbal Review). They have about 300+ questions, so I would do about 30 days per day. During the weekends, I would probably do more, so that I can complete all 300+ questions within the week.

Week 2 (8 Jul - 15 Jul)

I will spend about 1hr per day, to go through all the questions that I have done incorrectly from the Verbal Review. In addition, I will attempt the questions on GMAT Official Guide, focusing on the questions that I had gotten wrong the first time (I completed the OG 2020 during the past 4 weeks)

Week 3 (15 Jul - 22 Jul)

I will do a mock exam on 17 Jul and see if I have improved my verbal section. And then, for the next few days, I will spend about 1hr per day to do up 30 questions that I had purchased from GMAT Official Practice Question 2

Week 4 (22 Jul - 29 Jul)

This week, I will turn my attention to Quantitative Questions, by doing the questions on GMAT Official Guide (Quantitative Review). Likewise, I will aim to complete all the questions within this week.

Week 5 (29 Jul - 5 Aug)

I will review all the questions that I had done incorrectly, from OG 2020 to OG (Quantitative Review)

Week 6 (5 Aug - 12 Aug)

I will attempt a 3rd Practice Exam. And this week will be a buffer if any of my above plan were delayed, or that I was unable to meet my target.

Week 7 (12 Aug - 19 Aug)

I will attempt a 4th Practice Exam. And this week will also be a buffer if any of my above plan were delayed, or that I was unable to meet my target.

GMAT Exam: 21 Aug, Friday

As I am really new to this GMAT journey, I would appreciate any advice. Thank you.
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New post 30 Jun 2020, 21:24
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Hi Madwolf,

Pushing back your Test Date was a smart choice. Considering your timeframe and Score Goal, I have a few suggestions for your study plan:

From what you describe, your immediate study plan is 'book heavy'; unfortunately, many Test Takers who study in that way end up getting 'stuck' at a particular score level. The OG books are great sources for practice questions, but they're not designed to teach you Tactics, patterns or the little 'secrets' behind the GMAT - for those, you'll need Course-oriented materials. In addition, you would likely find it beneficial to work on some Quant and some Verbal each week (instead of the 'all of one and then all of the other' that you are thinking about).

We also need a way to regularly check on how effectively your studies are helping you to improve, so you should plan to take FULL-LENGTH CATs under realistic conditions AND at regular intervals (taking a NEW CAT every 1-2 weeks would be advisable; right now, you're planning to take just 1 CAT over the next 5 weeks).

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New post 01 Jul 2020, 07:41
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Hello again, Madwolf. I agree with what Rich has said just above about integrating Verbal and Quantitative practice each week. Otherwise, you will risk getting yourself top-heavy in one area while allowing your skills to deteriorate in the other. I also agree that working in an official CAT every 2 weeks or so is a good idea to ensure that you are putting yourself on the right track. Where I differ somewhat from the above Experts is in their suggestion that you must go through some prep course or another to actually learn how to tackle GMAT™ questions. To be sure, many test-takers benefit from working through such a guided program, but if you are disciplined, you can learn just as much by researching the questions you have missed and reading what others have to say about them. There are also plenty of free videos (by GMATNinja and others) that you can access on YouTube to help to that end, if you prefer learning that way.

The biggest red flag for me as I was reading over your proposed plan was that right away, in week 1, you say that you aim to complete all 300+ questions within the week from the Verbal Review. This is exactly the sort of thinking that I was cautioning against in my initial post. Working through a higher volume of questions is unlikely to allow you to develop your understanding of those questions any better than working through one-tenth that number of questions. Yes, I will put that in writing: You can learn more from 30 questions than from 300 questions. Savor the opportunity to take on a new question and learn from it. If your goal is to finish the book, then you will achieve just that. You will blow through all 300+ questions and then yearn for more questions, complaining that it is hard to find high-quality questions like the ones in the book. Take the time to understand where GMATNinja or some other poster might be coming from in a reply to a question. There is a reason so many members have given their kudos to such posts.

If it takes a course for you to stick to a tactic-oriented program of study, then sign up for a course. But no matter what, you want to focus on what you can learn from each question, rather than on what the next question may be.

Good luck with your studies.

- Andrew
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New post 06 Jul 2020, 05:35
MentorTutoring wrote:
Hello again, Madwolf. I agree with what Rich has said just above about integrating Verbal and Quantitative practice each week. Otherwise, you will risk getting yourself top-heavy in one area while allowing your skills to deteriorate in the other. I also agree that working in an official CAT every 2 weeks or so is a good idea to ensure that you are putting yourself on the right track. Where I differ somewhat from the above Experts is in their suggestion that you must go through some prep course or another to actually learn how to tackle GMAT™ questions. To be sure, many test-takers benefit from working through such a guided program, but if you are disciplined, you can learn just as much by researching the questions you have missed and reading what others have to say about them. There are also plenty of free videos (by GMATNinja and others) that you can access on YouTube to help to that end, if you prefer learning that way.

The biggest red flag for me as I was reading over your proposed plan was that right away, in week 1, you say that you aim to complete all 300+ questions within the week from the Verbal Review. This is exactly the sort of thinking that I was cautioning against in my initial post. Working through a higher volume of questions is unlikely to allow you to develop your understanding of those questions any better than working through one-tenth that number of questions. Yes, I will put that in writing: You can learn more from 30 questions than from 300 questions. Savor the opportunity to take on a new question and learn from it. If your goal is to finish the book, then you will achieve just that. You will blow through all 300+ questions and then yearn for more questions, complaining that it is hard to find high-quality questions like the ones in the book. Take the time to understand where GMATNinja or some other poster might be coming from in a reply to a question. There is a reason so many members have given their kudos to such posts.

If it takes a course for you to stick to a tactic-oriented program of study, then sign up for a course. But no matter what, you want to focus on what you can learn from each question, rather than on what the next question may be.

Good luck with your studies.

- Andrew


I have been watching the free videos by GMAT Ninja, conducted by Charles, and they are really, really useful.

Thank you!
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3 weeks to my GMAT   [#permalink] 06 Jul 2020, 05:35

3 weeks to my GMAT

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