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5 failed attempts, but still have the fire in me

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New post 09 Oct 2018, 22:50
egmat ScottTargetTestPrep GMATNinja mikemcgarry souvik101990 EMPOWERgmatRichC AjiteshArun

I started my journey back in July 2016. I started with purchasing e-gmat verbal course and working on quant from free internet course. Starting was pretty rough and realized, I need to put in more effort than I initially thought. I worked hard, took time off work. Did all OGs, all Gprep Tests. My mock scores were anywhere around 680-730 .
The D day arrive. 610 (Q 47, V27). I was pretty shattered, but moved on with work as being a consultant I don’t get much time off work

I again started my prep in May 2017. I did Magoosh course. Solved every question, went thru the explanation for each question. Took a lot mocks (including, Manhattan, Vertias, GPrep, Gprep questions). Took my exam in August again. 610 (Q 44, V31)

Pretty shattered, yet determined to get a better score. I tried again. I enrolled in a coaching class. Spoke to my teachers. The prep was top notch. Getting anything between a 47-51 on my gmatclub tests. Getting as high as 770 on my Manhattan. Teacher was extremely confident of an easy 730. November 2017, took again. 620 (Q44, V32). Spoke to my teacher, as to what could go wrong. No answer. Just did not know where I was going wrong. Spoke to a few more people, no one was able to figure out why.

Determined to apply in fall 2018, I thought I will take it again. I enrolled in empowergmat course and gave myself a month to prepare. Took the exam again End of December 2018. 660 (Q48, V32). I thought this was the end and I should apply with this score. My consultant convinced me that I should try again next year, as given the kind of profile I have, it is better to not settle with this score. Note :I was scoring anywhere between a 720-770 on my mocks

Got involved with work and couldn’t prepare for a while. I started with my prep again in June 2018. This time I enrolled in Crackverbal personal tuitions for verbal. Did my Gmactclub tests. Again scoring between 48-51 on an average. Doing pretty well on my mocks. D-day arrives 650 (Q46, V34).
I think I have refereed to every possible material and tried to put in my sweat and blood into this preparation. No one around me has been able to figure out what exactly is the issue.

After 5 failed attempts, I don’t know how but I just don’t like to give up on things in life. So finally, I am preparing for my last attempt and have given myself a month to apply to R2 this year.

I am seeking help and guidance from you all to help me create a plan as to how I can go about the next month of preparation
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New post 09 Oct 2018, 23:16
Hi dealnuke,

Since this appears to be your first post at GMATClub, I'm not sure whether we've ever discussed your prior studies or not (if you emailed me at some point in the past, then I'd like to know your real name so that I can review any past discussions that we may have had). If you would rather not share that information publicly, then you can PM or email me directly.

GMAC has publicly stated that the Official Score that you earn on Test Day is within +/- 30 points of actual ability. Your first 3 Official attempts all show the relative consistency of your performances on Test Day - you essentially performed the same each time (about 610 +/- a few Scaled points) even though you took those Exams over the course of a little over a year. Considering how much higher you were scoring on your CATs, you were either taking your CATs in an unrealistic fashion or there were aspects to Test Day that you were not properly preparing for (or both). You clearly improved on your 4th attempt, but some of the same issues that hurt your performance in the Verbal section were still happening. Your 5th attempt this past summer was fairly close to your 4th attempt.

At this point, it sounds like you may have taken some of your CATs multiple times, so you would have seen some 'repeat' questions during those repeated attempts. Unfortunately, seeing even a few of those repeat questions will throw off the scoring Algorithm and your pacing, stress and energy levels will all be 'better' than they normally would be - which would lead to an 'inflated' score result. However you choose to proceed, you will need some NEW CATs (with questions that you have not seen before).

Have you purchased the Enhanced Score Report for your most recent GMAT? While the ESR doesn't provide a lot of information, there are usually a few data points that we can use to define what went wrong (and what you should work on to score higher). If you purchase the ESR, then I'll be happy to analyze it for you.

Beyond that data, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on your timeline and your goals:

1) What 'brands' of CATs have you used during your studies? Do you have any 'leftover' CATs from any of those groups of CATs?
2) What is your goal score?
3) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

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New post 10 Oct 2018, 23:01
dealnuke wrote:
Determined to apply in fall 2018, I thought I will take it again. I enrolled in empowergmat course and gave myself a month to prepare. Took the exam again End of December 2018. 660 (Q48, V32). I thought this was the end and I should apply with this score. My consultant convinced me that I should try again next year, as given the kind of profile I have, it is better to not settle with this score. Note :I was scoring anywhere between a 720-770 on my mocks

Got involved with work and couldn’t prepare for a while. I started with my prep again in June 2018. This time I enrolled in Crackverbal personal tuitions for verbal. Did my Gmactclub tests. Again scoring between 48-51 on an average. Doing pretty well on my mocks. D-day arrives 650 (Q46, V34).
I think I have refereed to every possible material and tried to put in my sweat and blood into this preparation. No one around me has been able to figure out what exactly is the issue.
If those 700+ scores were on "fresh" GMATPreps, there is no reason that you can't get a similar score on the actual GMAT.

I think you should pull back a bit this time around, as you've probably gone through too much material and too many approaches. I strongly suggest you focus on only official material this time around and go in looking for a 650+ score (to minimize exam pressure). Work through the fundamentals again and discard anything that seems to be overly complicated or not in line with what the GMAT tests.
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New post 11 Oct 2018, 00:51
V27 to V34 is already a great jump.

Which coaching did you join?
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New post Updated on: 11 Oct 2018, 01:23
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi dealnuke,

Since this appears to be your first post at GMATClub, I'm not sure whether we've ever discussed your prior studies or not (if you emailed me at some point in the past, then I'd like to know your real name so that I can review any past discussions that we may have had). If you would rather not share that information publicly, then you can PM or email me directly.

GMAC has publicly stated that the Official Score that you earn on Test Day is within +/- 30 points of actual ability. Your first 3 Official attempts all show the relative consistency of your performances on Test Day - you essentially performed the same each time (about 610 +/- a few Scaled points) even though you took those Exams over the course of a little over a year. Considering how much higher you were scoring on your CATs, you were either taking your CATs in an unrealistic fashion or there were aspects to Test Day that you were not properly preparing for (or both). You clearly improved on your 4th attempt, but some of the same issues that hurt your performance in the Verbal section were still happening. Your 5th attempt this past summer was fairly close to your 4th attempt.

At this point, it sounds like you may have taken some of your CATs multiple times, so you would have seen some 'repeat' questions during those repeated attempts. Unfortunately, seeing even a few of those repeat questions will throw off the scoring Algorithm and your pacing, stress and energy levels will all be 'better' than they normally would be - which would lead to an 'inflated' score result. However you choose to proceed, you will need some NEW CATs (with questions that you have not seen before).

Have you purchased the Enhanced Score Report for your most recent GMAT? While the ESR doesn't provide a lot of information, there are usually a few data points that we can use to define what went wrong (and what you should work on to score higher). If you purchase the ESR, then I'll be happy to analyze it for you.

Beyond that data, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on your timeline and your goals:

1) What 'brands' of CATs have you used during your studies? Do you have any 'leftover' CATs from any of those groups of CATs?
2) What is your goal score?
3) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

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


Hi Rich,

Thank you for taking out time to respond to me. You voice notes were a huge help in increasing my score.

I agree the score might be inflated for the later attempts. However, I dont particularly remember answers to the previous attempted mocks and given that the attempts varied over 2 years, it might not play that big a role.

The major issue is that i have practised, all possible GMAT questions, Including OG 10, 12, 16 and 18. Specially for verbal. Also the supplement books for each sections. Old GMAT prep questions which I could find here. Probably that is why I am appalled as to where the issue is.

To answer your questions
1. GMAT Prep, Manhattan, Veritas - all tests; 1 test from Kaplan, 1 from the Economist, all tests from Magoosh
2. My goal score when I started was around 750 to be honest, but over time and mulkelltiple disappointments I will be more than happy with a 720-730. I come from a decent strategy consulting profile with a big 4 firm with half a decade experience.
3. Again, this has changed a lot over time. When I started my preparation, Kellogg was the place to be as most of my friends and co workers are at and it was in line with my goals. However, overtime this aspiration, though not dead, has surely subside.


Right now, I am just wondering how to go about this final attempt. Should i look for questions on gmatclub, the sources to refer to. Looking forward to your reply.

I will share 2 of my ESRs with you over personal message.

Originally posted by dealnuke on 11 Oct 2018, 01:15.
Last edited by dealnuke on 11 Oct 2018, 01:23, edited 1 time in total.
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New post 11 Oct 2018, 01:21
AjiteshArun wrote:
dealnuke wrote:
Determined to apply in fall 2018, I thought I will take it again. I enrolled in empowergmat course and gave myself a month to prepare. Took the exam again End of December 2018. 660 (Q48, V32). I thought this was the end and I should apply with this score. My consultant convinced me that I should try again next year, as given the kind of profile I have, it is better to not settle with this score. Note :I was scoring anywhere between a 720-770 on my mocks

Got involved with work and couldn’t prepare for a while. I started with my prep again in June 2018. This time I enrolled in Crackverbal personal tuitions for verbal. Did my Gmactclub tests. Again scoring between 48-51 on an average. Doing pretty well on my mocks. D-day arrives 650 (Q46, V34).
I think I have refereed to every possible material and tried to put in my sweat and blood into this preparation. No one around me has been able to figure out what exactly is the issue.
If those 700+ scores were on "fresh" GMATPreps, there is no reason that you can't get a similar score on the actual GMAT.

I think you should pull back a bit this time around, as you've probably gone through too much material and too many approaches. I strongly suggest you focus on only official material this time around and go in looking for a 650+ score (to minimize exam pressure). Work through the fundamentals again and discard anything that seems to be overly complicated or not in line with what the GMAT tests.


Hi Arun,

Thank you for replying.

I agree with the too much material aspect.

I did not take GMAT preps this time as I have already taken them quite a number of times and I am pretty sure the score will be inflated. The scores I mentioned were from Manhattan and Veritas.

For official questions. I have done OG pretty much 2-3 times. Also, as I am a CV PT student, have done advanced document files as well. Both for quant and verbal. So, to be honest I am very much out of official material. Precisely the reason for confusion as to what else can be done and how I should go about this final attempt.

Look forward to hearing from you.
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New post 11 Oct 2018, 09:22
Hi dealnuke,

Respondoing to the PM. My official verbal score was 42, and I'm not a native speaker. I finished both free gmat CATs, and practiced the official questions from here:

https://gmatclub.com/forum/the-most-com ... 40372.html

I read explanations by RonPurewal on manhattan prep forum and watched his videos (Thursdays with Ron).
https://gmatclub.com/forum/manhattan-s- ... 23612.html
I also looked through gmatclub answer exlanations - great explanations by users.

I used LSAT for CR and RC. It helped with RC, but I still struggled with CR because GMAT CR questions are slightly different, and I kept making silly mistakes. So, I went through as many GMAT CR questions as possible and watched Thursdays wirh Ron:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/all-gmatprep ... 87679.html
RC: https://lsathacks.com/guide/faq/how-to- ... rehension/
https://7sage.com/lsat-reading-comprehe ... ry-method/
https://magoosh.com/lsat/2017/lsat-read ... rehension/

I guess you have to keep on working on your quant part to score 49+ consistently. I used gmatclub CATs (great questions and explanations by Bunuel), manhattan CATs (great questions and explanations), official Question and exam packs. I found this thread very useful:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/all-you-need ... 40445.html

Hope this helps and good luck!
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New post 11 Oct 2018, 09:37
Hi dealnuke,

I’m glad you reached out, and I’m happy to help. So, as has been mentioned already, we first need to determine whether you are taking fresh or repeated practice exams. If you are repeating practice exams, you are likely to have questions memorized, and thus you are artificially inflating your practice test scores.

Additionally, when looking at your actual GMAT scores, it’s clear that verbal is your biggest weakness. Since 2016, you’ve scored a V27, V32, V32, and V34. So, the million dollar question is, WHY is your verbal performance dipping on test day? The two main culprits are that you have not been preparing effectively or that you are putting WAY TOO MUCH pressure on yourself to succeed (or a combination of both). Since you’ve been preparing for the GMAT for about two years, I’m sure that you are craving a high GMAT score more than anything, right? When you put that type of pressure on yourself, it’s VERY DIFFICULT to succeed on the GMAT.

Going into this next exam, certainly there are things you can adjust in your preparation strategy, but you also need to find a way to alleviate the pressure you’ve been putting on yourself, so you can walk into the GMAT with a cool head.

Feel free to reach out to me directly if you’d like to chat further.

Let’s do this!!
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New post 11 Oct 2018, 19:56
dealnuke wrote:
Hi Arun,

Thank you for replying.

I agree with the too much material aspect.

I did not take GMAT preps this time as I have already taken them quite a number of times and I am pretty sure the score will be inflated. The scores I mentioned were from Manhattan and Veritas.

For official questions. I have done OG pretty much 2-3 times. Also, as I am a CV PT student, have done advanced document files as well. Both for quant and verbal. So, to be honest I am very much out of official material. Precisely the reason for confusion as to what else can be done and how I should go about this final attempt.

Look forward to hearing from you.
That's a tough spot to be in. I'd still recommend a review of the OG(s). Just the logic, no need to try solving questions that you remember again.

I'm not sure what the advanced documents you mentioned cover, but the GMAT itself tests only (relatively) basic concepts. I'd advise you to stick to the basics, especially if you find yourself taking too much time thinking about your approach or if you often overthink questions.
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New post 11 Oct 2018, 20:15
Hi dealnuke,

Since you have just 3 posts so far on GMATClub, I don't think that you will be able to include attachments in your PMs, so you can feel free to email your ESRs directly to me.

From your messages, you seem overly concerned about the fact that you've "run out" of Official material. Working through all of those Official questions was not enough - in and of itself - to get you close to your score goal, so you shouldn't be thinking in those terms now so much as about HOW you're going about answering practice questions. In simple terms, this is an issue of Tactics and how you "see" the GMAT. Raising a 650 to a 750+ would likely require at least another 2 months of consistent, guided study - and you would have to make significant improvements to how you handle BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. From a "skill" level, a 720 isn't that much different from a 750, so you will still need to make those significant changes to hit that Score too. Thankfully, the GMAT is a consistent, predictable Exam, so you CAN train to score at a higher level. However, one month of additional study might not be enough time.

1) What are the exact application deadlines that you're facing?
2) Going forward, how many hours do you think you can consistently study each week?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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New post 17 Oct 2018, 01:29
Thank you so much for your detailed reply, Akela. I have started with videos from Ron.
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New post 17 Oct 2018, 01:33
ScottTargetTestPrep wrote:
Hi dealnuke,

I’m glad you reached out, and I’m happy to help. So, as has been mentioned already, we first need to determine whether you are taking fresh or repeated practice exams. If you are repeating practice exams, you are likely to have questions memorized, and thus you are artificially inflating your practice test scores.

Additionally, when looking at your actual GMAT scores, it’s clear that verbal is your biggest weakness. Since 2016, you’ve scored a V27, V32, V32, and V34. So, the million dollar question is, WHY is your verbal performance dipping on test day? The two main culprits are that you have not been preparing effectively or that you are putting WAY TOO MUCH pressure on yourself to succeed (or a combination of both). Since you’ve been preparing for the GMAT for about two years, I’m sure that you are craving a high GMAT score more than anything, right? When you put that type of pressure on yourself, it’s VERY DIFFICULT to succeed on the GMAT.

Going into this next exam, certainly there are things you can adjust in your preparation strategy, but you also need to find a way to alleviate the pressure you’ve been putting on yourself, so you can walk into the GMAT with a cool head.

Feel free to reach out to me directly if you’d like to chat further.

Let’s do this!!


Thank you so much for your detailed reply.

I guess you are very much correct. Maybe it is the exam pressure which I am not able to handle. Would you have anything I should be practising or inculcate during my mocks or just something else which can help.

Also, i presume I am not analysing my mistakes well. As you correctly pointed out, the score hasn't improved that much over the years despite putting the relevant efforts. Would you have suggestions as to how one should go about analysing mistake be it on practice questions or practice tests.

Look forward to hearing from you.
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New post 17 Oct 2018, 01:37
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi dealnuke,

Since you have just 3 posts so far on GMATClub, I don't think that you will be able to include attachments in your PMs, so you can feel free to email your ESRs directly to me.

From your messages, you seem overly concerned about the fact that you've "run out" of Official material. Working through all of those Official questions was not enough - in and of itself - to get you close to your score goal, so you shouldn't be thinking in those terms now so much as about HOW you're going about answering practice questions. In simple terms, this is an issue of Tactics and how you "see" the GMAT. Raising a 650 to a 750+ would likely require at least another 2 months of consistent, guided study - and you would have to make significant improvements to how you handle BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. From a "skill" level, a 720 isn't that much different from a 750, so you will still need to make those significant changes to hit that Score too. Thankfully, the GMAT is a consistent, predictable Exam, so you CAN train to score at a higher level. However, one month of additional study might not be enough time.

1) What are the exact application deadlines that you're facing?
2) Going forward, how many hours do you think you can consistently study each week?

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


Thank you for the reply. Would send you a personal email with the ESRs.

To answer your questions.

1. I am planning for Round 2 application for major US B-schools. So, I presume November End would be a safe target to take my GMAT.
2. I think I would be able to study for 16- 18 hours. And If I get decent enough room on the weekend, can move this up to 24-25 hours.

Look forward to hearing from you.
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New post 17 Oct 2018, 19:01
Hi dealnuke,

To help manage your nerves, you could try some visualization techniques. Imagine various test-day scenarios, such as getting stuck on a question, issues in the testing center, feeling pressed for time, or worrying that you’re underperforming. As you feel your stress responses start to kick in, practice pulling yourself together and visualize focusing on getting correct answers.

When taking the GMAT, the best way to deal with stress is to get busy answering the question in front of you, focusing completely on the task at hand so that you redirect all of that nervous energy and naturally calm down. In other words, you distract yourself with a goal. Just tell yourself that all that matters is getting the correct answer to the question in front of you, and then when you’ve finished that question, take the same attitude toward the next one. Focus on winning each “mini-battle” and you won't have time for anxiety. If you can win enough of those battles, you can win the GMAT war, right?

Now, regarding analyzing mistakes that you make while answering practice questions or taking mock exams, you have to determine what is going on so that you can make changes to how you’re operating and get correct answers in the future. So, for each question that you don't answer correctly, ask yourself, "WHY didn’t I get this one correct?" Is there a concept that you don't understand sufficiently? Did you make a careless error? Etc.

You also may find it helpful to read this article about how to limit GMAT anxiety.

Please keep me updated on how things are progressing. Let’s do this!!
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New post 17 Oct 2018, 19:40
Hi dealnuke,

Just looking at how your scores have improved, we would recommend you to focus on improving your verbal skills more. However, a higher math score, if you can manage to get it, will definitely help you achieve the score you intend to get.

We believe that there are patterns and logic to GMAT quant problems. Learning these patterns and logic is the key to manage your time more effectively. With Math Revolution’s Variable Approach for DS questions, you can learn this logic while minimizing time spent on each question and improving accuracy. On average, our students have about 10 minutes to spare before the exam ends. Also the Variable Approach applies to almost all of DS questions. Here is an example how the Variable Approach can be applied. When you encounter a DS problem, you first need to count the number of variables and equations given in the question. By doing so, you can determine which answer choice will most likely be the answer. If there are only two variables in a question, you need at least 2 equations to solve the question. Since two conditions in the question usually give 2 separate equations, it is most likely that C (both conditions together are sufficient) will be the answer.

dealnuke, we post our questions for DS & PS every week under Forum>GMAT Quantitative. It’s a good place to practice our methods. Also check out our tips on how to improve your score.
https://gmatclub.com/forum/the-ultimate ... 09801.html

We offer both free trial pack and free video lessons to students on our site mathrevolution.com So check it out to see if our material will work for you. Also don’t forget to try our free diagnostic test!! You will never run out of math questions. We offer over 2,700 questions through our membership, starting at $99 per 3 months.

Please let us know if you have further questions.
You can reach us at info@mathrevolution.com

Success is within your reach,
Good luck!
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Re: 5 failed attempts, but still have the fire in me   [#permalink] 17 Oct 2018, 19:40
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