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520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!

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520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Aug 2018, 05:56
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Hi all,

This is my first thread in this forum. I was following GMAT club from some time and found many useful posts.

I want to bring into your attention that I had taken the Official GMAT test last week and got a meager score of 520 (Q48, V15).

I had taken two months of intense preparation before appearing for the Official test. I had taken 6 official GMAT practice tests (2 free & 4 purchased). My selection schools require 700+ and now I am in doubt whether to drop my MBA plans. In fact I have to do MBA to pursue my dreams. I cannot go away from my plans easily. So I started thinking what more could be done to fetch my desired score.

To make it clear and to obtain a fair and detailed advice, I want to let you guys know my preparation methodology. I was using OG 2016. I could complete only half of the questions in Problem Solving and nearly half of the total questions in Data Sufficiency of OG in my study schedule before the Official test. But, I managed to score Q48.

However, I concentrated more on the verbal part in my study schedule. I completed almost all the questions in Sentence Correction and as advised in this forum, analysed all the answer choices which are wrong and why they are wrong. I did my study confidently in sentence correction. But when it comes to the tests, I am not able to score.

For CR and RC, I studied the strategies well and was using the same during my practice. But I was finding issues with comprehending the passage and understanding the passage/argument. It takes long time for me and most times I get the answer wrong as well. Almost in all the tests including the Official tests, I was able to answer only two RCs. Third and Fourth RCs were needed to be skipped to finish it on time. Any advice to improve the reading skills and understanding the passage/argument would be very much helpful. I worked out half of the questions in CR and RC from OG 2016. But since I was getting many questions wrong, I am not as happy with my work out in RC & CR as with SC.

I would be very much thankful if any one in this forum can help me with proper guidance. I am ready to follow anything to secure my score of 700+ without which my long term plans would be at stake.

So, please help me.

Thanks in advance.

Posted from my mobile device
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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Aug 2018, 10:59
Hi CrackkkGMAT,

Many Test Takers find the GMAT to be challenging - so you're not alone. Thankfully, the GMAT is a consistent, predictable Test, so you CAN train to score at a higher level. That having been said, raising a 520 to a 700+ will likely require at least another 3 months of consistent, guided study - and you'll have to make significant improvements to how you handle BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. This ultimately means that you cannot simply work through lots of additional practice questions - you will have to train to learn and practice the proper Tactics, so that you can work through GMAT questions in an efficient fashion.

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:

Studies:
1) How long have you studied?
2) Did you use any other study materials besides the OG and the 6 Official CATs?
3) How have you scored on EACH of your CATs (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?

Goals:
4) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
5) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Aug 2018, 02:18
Hi Rich,

Thanks for shedding the lights.

Answering to the points asked,

Studies:
1) How long have you studied?

2 months intense preparation. Though I was looking into GMAT from last 3-4 months, I could prepare intensely only for 2 months after booking my test date.

2) Did you use any other study materials besides the OG and the 6 Official CATs?

Besides OG and 6 Official CATs, I purchased a set of official practice questions from mba.com which covered 115PS, 115DS, 75SC, 65CR, 75RC questions.

3) How have you scored on EACH of your CATs (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?

On an average I was scoring Q42-44 and V19-20 on my CATs with the overall score 500-510

Goals:
4) When are you planning to apply to Business School?

By mid 2019, I plan to float my applications.

5) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

Not finalized yet, though I plan applying to Cambridge Judge, IMD Switzerland and Nanyang technological University.

Looking forward to hear from you. Thanks in advance.

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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Aug 2018, 05:21
Hey CrackkkGMAT!
First off - I can relate to your disappointment, but your determination is admirable. this is a great place to start!

Regarding your troubles with RC, I have a few thoughts -
- first of all, having time to answer only two is a product of your overall speed on the section, on CR and SC as well. are you possibly taking too long to solve these?
- how long are you spending just reading the passage? reading speed is not something that you can dramatically change overnight, but what you can do is practice skimming - reading at general level, enough to understand the structure of the passage, but not needing to understand every last thing. You can do this because many of the RC questions will refer not to the whole passage, but to a specific part ("in line 17...") and this you'll be able to focus more on what is necessary when you face the questions.

I have some more thoughts on how to improve RC, but in order to give you more personal advice, I would need to go over your full ESR and have a better understanding of who you are:
How many times have you taken the GMAT?
How much time do you have to prepare for your next test?
Are you a native English speaker or not?

Please attach your ESR in this chat, and I’d be happy to analyze it for you.
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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Aug 2018, 08:42
Hi CrackkkGMAT,

I responded to your email with some notes and additional questions.

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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Aug 2018, 00:24
Hi CrackkkGMAT,

I am sorry to hear that your result was not in line with your expectation but do not be demotivated. Consider this attempt as an eye-opener and learn from it. It is possible to bounce back from a score of 520 to a 700+ score. Here are a few examples of students who were able to bounce back from low scores to achieve their target score:
    1. Askul improved from 520 (Q44 V17) to 710 (Q48 V40). Click here to read his inspiring GMAT journey.
    2. Richa followed a methodical approach and improved from 470 to 720 (V16 to V39). Click here to learn how she achieved this feat.
    3. Bruno improved from a 540 to 730 in 1 month. See how he focused on "logical approach" and building "core skills". Click here to watch his amazing video debrief.

How to Improve In Verbal

CrackkkGMAT, so far it seems you have focused only on solving questions, while that is necessary it is not sufficient. To ace GMAT it is necessary that you have a methodical approach. To give you a couple of examples:
    1. Chintan gave too many mocks in his first attempt and ended up getting only a 630. In his second attempt, he realized his mistake, followed a methodical approach, got his fundamentals strong and improved to a 710. Click here to read his de-brief.
    2. Murali (740) started his GMAT journey only by practicing questions from OG. Soon realized that it requires a methodical approach to ace GMAT. Click here to read his amazing debrief.
You can get access to the methodical and logical approach used by these successful students by signing up for the e-GMAT Free Trial. We are also conducting a free CR webinar on 18th of August which will focus on strategies to ace CR, registration link to which is given below. We had conducted a free webinar on RC reading strategies last weekend. I am sharing the recording of the session below for your convenience.

Hope this helps!

Regards,
Aditee
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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Aug 2018, 11:55
Hi CrackkkGMAT,

I’m sorry to hear about how things went with your GMAT. Since you prepared for a few months but did not see an improvement in your verbal score, you really need to look at HOW you have been preparing, and potentially make some changes. In your previous round of studying, it appears that your prep centered on doing ONLY practice questions. While engaging in practice is a necessary part of improving your GMAT skills, such practice is only beneficial after you have studied the necessary topics on which those questions are based.

Thus, moving forward, you may consider adjusting your study plan such that it allows for linear learning. Specifically, consider using a resource that allows you FIRST to learn the concepts and strategies related to Sentence Correction, Critical Reasoning, and Reading Comprehension, and SECOND to practice with a large number of realistic questions.

For example, let’s say you begin studying Critical Reasoning. Your first goal is to master the individual Critical Reasoning topics: Strengthen the Argument, Weaken the Argument, Resolve the Paradox, etc. As you learn each Critical Reasoning problem type, do focused practice so you can assess how well you understand the topic. If, for example, you incorrectly answer a Weaken the Argument question, ask yourself why. Did you make a careless mistake? Did you not recognize the specific Critical Reasoning question type? Were you doing too much analysis in your head? Did you skip over a keyword in an answer choice? You must thoroughly analyze your mistakes and seek to turn weaknesses into strengths by focusing on the question types you dread seeing and the questions you take a long time to answer correctly.

When practicing Reading Comprehension, you need to develop a reading strategy that is both efficient and thorough. Reading too fast and not understanding what you have read are equally as harmful as reading too slow and using up too much time. When attacking Reading Comprehension passages, you must have one clear goal in mind: to understand the context of what you are reading. However, you must do so efficiently, so you need to avoid getting bogged down in the details of each paragraph and focus on understanding the main point of each paragraph. That being said, do not fall into the trap of thinking that you can just read the intro and the conclusion and comprehend the main idea of a paragraph. As you are reading a paragraph, also consider how the context of the paragraph relates to previous paragraphs, so you can continue developing your overall understanding of the passage. Furthermore, as you practice Reading Comprehension, focus on the exact types of Reading Comprehension questions with which you struggle: find the main idea, inference, author’s tone, etc. As with Critical Reasoning, analyze your incorrect answers to better determine why you tend to get a particular question type wrong, and then improve upon your weaknesses.

The process above can be perfected with a lot of practice. However, keep in mind that GMAT Reading Comprehension passages are not meant to be stimulating, so to better prepare yourself to read such bland passages, read magazines with similar content and style, such as the Economist, Scientific American, and Smithsonian.

Sentence Correction, on the other hand, is a bit of a different animal compared to Reading Comprehension and Critical Reasoning. There are three aspects to getting correct answers to GMAT Sentence Correction questions: what you know, such as grammar rules, what you see, such as violations of grammar rules and the logic of sentence structure, and what you do, such as carefully considering each answer choice in the context of the non-underlined portion of the sentence. To drive up your Sentence Correction score, you likely will have to work on all three of those aspects. Furthermore, the reason that your Sentence Correction performance has not improved is likely that you have not been working on all three of those aspects.

Regarding what you know, to be successful in Sentence Correction, first and foremost, you MUST know your grammar rules. Let's be clear, though: GMAT Sentence Correction is not just a test of knowledge of grammar rules. The reason for learning grammar rules is so that you can determine what sentences convey and whether sentences are well-constructed. In fact, in many cases, incorrect answers to Sentence Correction questions are grammatically flawless. Thus, often your task is to use your knowledge of grammar rules to determine which answer choice creates the most logical sentence meaning and structure.

This determination of whether sentences are well-constructed and logical is the second aspect of finding correct answers to Sentence Correction questions, what you see. To develop this skill, you probably have to slow way down. You won't develop this skill by spending under two minutes per question. For a while, anyway, you have to spend time with each question, maybe even ten or fifteen minutes on one question sometimes, analyzing every answer choice until you see the details that you have to see in order to choose the correct answer.

As you go through the answer choices, consider the meaning conveyed by each version of the sentence. Does the meaning make sense? Even if you can tell what the version is SUPPOSED to convey, does the version really convey that meaning? Is there a verb to go with the subject? Do all pronouns in the sentence clearly refer to nouns in the sentence? By slowing way down and looking for these details, you learn to see what you have to see in order to clearly understand which answer to a Sentence Correction question is correct.

There is only one correct answer to any Sentence Correction question, there are clear reasons why that choice is correct and the others are not, and those reasons are not that the correct version simply "sounds right." In fact, the correct version often sounds a little off at first. That correct answers may sound a little off is not surprising. If the correct answer were always the one that sounded right, then most people most of the time would get Sentence Correction questions correct, without really knowing why the wrong answers were wrong and the correct answers were correct. So, you have to go beyond choosing what "sounds right" and learn to clearly see the logical reasons why one choice is better than all of the others.

The third aspect of getting Sentence Correction questions correct is what you have to do. The main thing that you have to do is be very careful. You have to make sure that you are truly considering the structures of sentences and the meanings conveyed rather than allowing yourself to be tricked into choosing trap answers that sound right but don't convey meanings that make sense. You also have to make sure that you put some real energy into finding the correct answers. Finding the correct answer to a Sentence Correction question may take bouncing from choice to choice repeatedly until you start to see the differences between the choices that make all choices wrong except for one. Often, when you first look at the choices in a Sentence Correction question, only one or two seem obviously incorrect. It may take time for you to see what you have to see. Getting the right answers takes a certain work ethic. You have to be determined to see the differences and to figure out the precise reasons that one choice is correct.

To improve what you do when you answer Sentence Correction questions, seek to become aware of how you are going about answering them. For instance, are you being careful and looking for logic and details, or are you quickly eliminating choices that sound a little off and then choosing the best of the rest? If you choose an incorrect answer, consider what you did that resulted in your arriving at that answer and what you could do differently in order to arrive at correct answers more consistently. Furthermore, see how many questions you can get correct in a row as you practice. If you break your streak by missing one, consider what you could have done differently that would have resulted in your extending your streak.

As with your Critical Reasoning and Reading Comprehension regiments, after learning a particular Sentence Correction topic, engage in focused practice with 30 questions or more that involve that topic. As your Sentence Correction skills improve, you’ll then want to practice with SC questions that test you on skills from multiple SC topics.

Ultimately, if you are unable to learn and practice in the manner described above, you may consider looking for additional verbal prep resources. If you are unsure of which resources to choose, check out some reviews here on GMAT Club.

You also may find my article with more information regarding
how to score a 700+ on the GMAT helpful.

Feel free to reach out with any questions.

Good luck!
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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Aug 2018, 03:11
Hello CrackkkGMAT ,
I am sorry to hear about your score. Even I had the same experience, as you are having. I scored 600 twice, a 660 and finally a 710 - in last week. Please PM me so that I can guide you and I can work with you to improve your verbal. Remember that you have a good Quant score, so its just a matter of time that you change your Verbal test taking attitude. I guess that's the issue you are facing.

Best,
Dinkar.
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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Aug 2018, 05:00
Start with basics again .. i would suggest you to take the e-GMAT course. It will clear all the basics and definitely you will see a considerable improvement in verbal score.
Do not try to jump directly from V15 to V35. You need to move slowly. Solve less questions but with more accuracy. Step by step.

I can help you a bit as i improved from V23 to V35, and trying to move towards V40.

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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !!  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Aug 2018, 07:26
CrackkkGMAT wrote:
Hi all,

This is my first thread in this forum. I was following GMAT club from some time and found many useful posts.

I want to bring into your attention that I had taken the Official GMAT test last week and got a meager score of 520 (Q48, V15).

I had taken two months of intense preparation before appearing for the Official test. I had taken 6 official GMAT practice tests (2 free & 4 purchased). My selection schools require 700+ and now I am in doubt whether to drop my MBA plans. In fact I have to do MBA to pursue my dreams. I cannot go away from my plans easily. So I started thinking what more could be done to fetch my desired score.

To make it clear and to obtain a fair and detailed advice, I want to let you guys know my preparation methodology. I was using OG 2016. I could complete only half of the questions in Problem Solving and nearly half of the total questions in Data Sufficiency of OG in my study schedule before the Official test. But, I managed to score Q48.

However, I concentrated more on the verbal part in my study schedule. I completed almost all the questions in Sentence Correction and as advised in this forum, analysed all the answer choices which are wrong and why they are wrong. I did my study confidently in sentence correction. But when it comes to the tests, I am not able to score.

For CR and RC, I studied the strategies well and was using the same during my practice. But I was finding issues with comprehending the passage and understanding the passage/argument. It takes long time for me and most times I get the answer wrong as well. Almost in all the tests including the Official tests, I was able to answer only two RCs. Third and Fourth RCs were needed to be skipped to finish it on time. Any advice to improve the reading skills and understanding the passage/argument would be very much helpful. I worked out half of the questions in CR and RC from OG 2016. But since I was getting many questions wrong, I am not as happy with my work out in RC & CR as with SC.

I would be very much thankful if any one in this forum can help me with proper guidance. I am ready to follow anything to secure my score of 700+ without which my long term plans would be at stake.

So, please help me.

Thanks in advance.

Posted from my mobile device


I think you have managed quite a good score in Quant without preparing much for it. Verbal is of course a big pain point. Start from the very beginning and go through the entire Verbal curriculum of a test prep.
Here are some of our free resources including a free class and lots of video solutions to OG questions: https://www.veritasprep.com/gmat/free-resources/
These will show you the Veritas Prep strategy for various types of verbal questions.

Also, you will find many useful articles on our blog here: https://www.veritasprep.com/blog/category/gmat/
There are lots of discussions on RC and CR strategies here.
_________________

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Veritas Prep GMAT Instructor

Learn more about how Veritas Prep can help you achieve a great GMAT score by checking out their GMAT Prep Options >

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Re: 520 (Q48, V15)!! Need immediate help !! &nbs [#permalink] 21 Aug 2018, 07:26
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