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480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident

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480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident [#permalink]

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New post 28 Sep 2016, 16:16
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Dear boos - I'm a bit of a spazz so please bear with me. All of this happened a few months ago but I didn't think to post right away.

A little about me:
Liberal arts major, barely passed math in high school, didn’t know how to solve an equation until this year. Right before the Great Recession, I graduated from college and bought my first GMAT Official Guide and Manhattan GMAT books. After perusing them, I wept a little and realized I am completely and utterly screwed. After 8 years of more tearful and insanely futile perusing, I finally accepted the fact that I need to actually study for the GMAT. I took a practice exam and got a 480. Yes, of course I wept again. I’m very weepy that way.

What I did: Before I could understand wtf those red books were about, I needed to cover 12 years of math so I went to Khan Academy for help. I could solve systems of equations within the week and I finally felt well-prepared to tackle GMAT math. However, because I’m dumb, I decided to register for the GMAT again thinking I’d be able to absorb everything Manhattan GMAT has to offer within the week. I still couldn’t get through the first chapter of the Number Properties book because it's dull af so I just started praying for an okay score. I got a 600 (36Q, 32V). Wait what, I need to study verbal?!! But I'm liberal arts :( After eating my feelings for a few weeks, I found EmpowerGMAT. OH MY GOD, YOU GUYS. Totally fangirling rn.

Why EmpowerGMAT is the most amazing, most effective prep program out there:
Rich’s enthusiasm is infectious. At first, he made me go “um, are you for real” because he reminded me of that "tiny tiny ads" infomercial guy but Don Lapre died in 2011 and all of the seemingly crazy stuff Rich says simply works. I live in the middle of nowhere, far, far from the US, and I found a way to get myself a Costco pack of Trident Cinnamon gum. I even winked at some creepy rando at the testing center (who then followed me halfway home but that’s not for here). Purposely guessed on 3 questions because they were too hard. Also, the fact that Rich and Max’s voices didn’t put me to sleep is huge. They really make you want to annihilate the GMAT. For some reason, MGMAT and Magoosh made the GMAT look like the Lannister clan on Captagon. Ain’t nobody got time for that (says the bright girl who put off -studying- for the GMAT for 7 years).

Both sections are a work of art - watch the videos, do the drills, take the quizzes. It just works. Rinse and repeat (you always pick up something new from the videos). EmpowerGMAT uses real GMAT questions from the OGs – this is rare – and absolutely destroys them. Confidence is such a huge part of the GMAT experience and these guys will instill “rational confidence” in you. You will feel confident because you know how GMAT questions are written, why they’re written a certain way, and what you can do to eviscerate each question. They even teach you how to make educated guesses. I love these two.

Note on Verbal: People often have a hard time improving Reading Comprehension. I used to skim the passages because I just don’t care enough about algae (or my $250 fee, time, “effort”). DON’T SKIM. “Empower reading” is totally a thing.

About practice exams: After my 480, I stopped taking mocks under exam conditions because it just bums me out. I used the GMATPREP software for extra practice though (untimed quizzes, etc).

EXAM DAY: I take Lexapro which means I'm very big on stress barfs. I scheduled my exam for 6pm, left for the testing center 2 hours ahead, STILL GOT CAUGHT IN TRAFFIC (I live 5 km away), arrived 15 minutes late (yes I still found the time to wink at the creepy rando - hello priorities). My late arrival actually gave me an extra boost of adrenaline which was super helpful. After breezing through the AWA and IR sections because no one cares, I almost started weeping again because Quant seemed....easy. I kept hearing Rich's voice ("a meaty question") and it really helped. During Verbal, I kept hearing Max's mantra: DON'T SKIM. Seriously, don't skim. I got a 46Q, 41V for a 710 total. I was the only one in the testing center apart from the Pearson Vue person and the creepy rando so I screamed a little (with joy, not WTF).

TL;DR – Subliterate person spent 7 years “studying” for the GMAT, got 710 after two weeks of intense-ish studying with EmpowerGMAT. Worth so, so, so much more than $99. You won’t regret it.

ps - I recently got into INSEAD with a giant (way above average) non-need based scholarship (presumably because my profile's "nice") - hollaaaaaa.

Last edited by zapiekanka on 29 Sep 2016, 19:49, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident [#permalink]

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New post 28 Sep 2016, 22:47
Congratulations Zapiekanka! Wish you success in your future endeavors


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Re: 480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident [#permalink]

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New post 29 Sep 2016, 09:10
Hi zapiekanka,

That is OUTSTANDING news overall! Raising your score from a 480 to a 710 is a remarkable achievement and since you've now gotten into INSEAD (AND with a Scholarship, no less), you've clearly done amazingly well for yourself. You clearly have the right attitude and flexible thinking necessary to do well in Business School and beyond, so I suspect that there will be plenty more 'big things' in your future. Congratulations again!

Another GMAT Assassin has been made!
Rich
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Re: 480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident [#permalink]

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New post 29 Sep 2016, 11:05
Wow. Congratulations zapiekanka. Highly encouraging. But is this kinda like a throwback . Or are you INSEAD D16 batch?


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Re: 480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident [#permalink]

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New post 29 Sep 2016, 19:46
AmanKidCACS wrote:
Wow. Congratulations zapiekanka. Highly encouraging. But is this kinda like a throwback . Or are you INSEAD D16 batch?


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17D (all of this happened a few months ago)

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Re: 480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident [#permalink]

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New post 29 Sep 2016, 21:48
zapiekanka wrote:
AmanKidCACS wrote:
Wow. Congratulations zapiekanka. Highly encouraging. But is this kinda like a throwback . Or are you INSEAD D16 batch?


Sent from my iPhone using GMAT Club Forum mobile app


17D (all of this happened a few months ago)


Yes. My bad, i meant 17D. I intend to apply for INSEAD's 18J, but yet to take the GMAT. Hope a 720+ would suffice.

Would like to hear about your experience with the Application and Interview process, if you do not mind.

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Re: 480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident [#permalink]

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New post 30 Sep 2016, 05:29
AmanKidCACS wrote:
zapiekanka wrote:
AmanKidCACS wrote:
Wow. Congratulations zapiekanka. Highly encouraging. But is this kinda like a throwback . Or are you INSEAD D16 batch?


Sent from my iPhone using GMAT Club Forum mobile app


17D (all of this happened a few months ago)


Yes. My bad, i meant 17D. I intend to apply for INSEAD's 18J, but yet to take the GMAT. Hope a 720+ would suffice.

Would like to hear about your experience with the Application and Interview process, if you do not mind.


Spend lots and lots of time on your essays and be sure to convey an image of yourself that is worldly, creative, and humble (but not self-deprecating).

Check out the threads in this forum: insead-201/

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Re: 480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident [#permalink]

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New post 30 Sep 2016, 17:36
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Hi AmanKidCACS,

Zapiekanka brings up a really important point about applications - you really have to think in terms of how you can use each piece of your application to "market yourself" to each individual School. You might be a perfect applicant right now, but if you don't put your application together properly - or make a mistake in how you present yourself, then you might end up wait-listed (or even rejected) instead of receiving the invitation that you're after. Top Schools receive lots of applications, and there are often so many qualified applicants that the Schools find it difficult to narrow the list down - so they sometimes look for reasons to reject applicants. This is all meant to say that working with an Admissions Expert (while not necessary) can greatly improve your chances at getting into your first-choice School - since those Experts know how to craft the proper application.

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

760+: Learn What GMAT Assassins Do to Score at the Highest Levels
Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

Rich Cohen

Co-Founder & GMAT Assassin

Special Offer: Save $75 + GMAT Club Tests Free
  Official GMAT Exam Packs + 70 Pt. Improvement Guarantee
www.empowergmat.com/

***********************Select EMPOWERgmat Courses now include ALL 6 Official GMAC CATs!***********************

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Re: 480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident [#permalink]

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New post 04 Oct 2016, 08:36
Hey
zapiekanka ! How much time did you need to overachieve your target score from 480 to710?
Thank you

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Re: 480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident   [#permalink] 04 Oct 2016, 08:36
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480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trident

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