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670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+

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670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2019, 06:53
Hello everyone,

I took the GMAT and scored a 670. (Q48 V34) It was my first official attempt noting that I had previously taken all 6 GMAT Practice Exams. I would say my score was the average of the scores of the practice exams.

STUDY PLAN

I. QUANTITATIVE:

For the quantitative part, I studied MGMAT and solved all questions in the GMAT Official Guide, the 300 additional questions found in the GMAT Official Guide Quantitative Review and the Official Practice Questions. I also bought the GMAT Official Advanced Questions; I solved those but did not have the time to thoroughly go over my mistakes.

All in all, my preparation for the quantitative section was solid and involved solving a significant number of problems. I realized that I had a problem with timing and rushed through the last 3 questions. Knowing that, I think I can improve my score to a 49 if I pay more attention to time management.

Based on the above, what do you further recommend in terms of preparation for this section, especially for someone like me who scored a 48 but wants to improve it?

II. VERBAL

As specified, I scored a 34. I think improving on that would be easier than improving on the quantitative part.

For Reading Comprehension, I did not use any book for preparation. I only solved most (if not all) GMAT Official Guide Questions + GMAT Official Verbal Review Questions etc... So basically, all questions from GMAC. I'd say I did the same for the Sentence Correction Part, with the exception of some preparation from MGMAT.

To improve on both of those sections, what should I additionally do?

For Critical Reasoning which is my weak spot, I studied both MGMAT and PowerScore. I managed to clearly understand the approach offered by these books and successfully applied them to solve the questions in the books themselves. However, I don't think the approaches were as beneficial as I thought they would be when solving CR questions from the Official Guide.

I'm looking to improve my Verbal to at least a 38. So combined with a Q48 or Q49, I can hit my target score.

I'd really appreciate any recommendations. The plan is to sit for the GMAT again in 2-3 weeks to be able to meet the deadlines for Round 2.

Thank you in advance!
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Re: 670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2019, 21:15
Hi NGMATK,

First off, a 670/Q48 is a strong Score, so it could be enough to get you into your first-choice School. As such, a retest might not be necessary. Depending on the Schools that you plan to apply to, you would likely find it beneficial to speak with an Admissions Expert about your overall profile. There's a Forum full of those Experts here:

https://gmatclub.com/forum/ask-admissio ... tants-124/

There's certainly no harm in continuing to study - and you have an opportunity to pick up some points in BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. 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? How many hours do you typically study each week?
2) On what dates did you take EACH of your CATs/mocks and how did you score on EACH (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?

Goals:
3) What is your overall goal score?
4) What Schools are you planning to apply to?
5) What are the exact application deadlines that you are facing?

You might also choose to purchase the Enhanced Score Report. 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 on Test Day (and what you should work on to score higher). If you purchase the ESR, then I'll be happy to analyze it for you.

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Re: 670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Nov 2019, 02:44
EMPOWERgmatRichC

Hi Rich,

Thanks for the feedback. I will speak with an admissions expert about my profile as advised.

Meanwhile, please find below my replies in bold to your questions:

Hi NGMATK,

First off, a 670/Q48 is a strong Score, so it could be enough to get you into your first-choice School. As such, a retest might not be necessary. Depending on the Schools that you plan to apply to, you would likely find it beneficial to speak with an Admissions Expert about your overall profile. There's a Forum full of those Experts here:


There's certainly no harm in continuing to study - and you have an opportunity to pick up some points in BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. 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? How many hours do you typically study each week? I've studied for around 2 months. Average is around 21 hours a week. I really believe my preparation for the Verbal part wasn't enough although I studied using the best books available. However, I was never confident when it came to this section, especially CR.
2) On what dates did you take EACH of your CATs/mocks and how did you score on EACH (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)? To be honest, I completed the first 3 CATs around a year and a half ago (back when I wasn't very serious about the GMAT) so I don't believe my most recent scores on these specific ones are very accurate. To summarize, I scored 740 (Q50,V40), 760 (Q51,V41) and 740 (Q51,V38) on Exams 1, 2 and 3 respectively. My most recent attempts at completing those were around a month ago. For Exams 3, 4 and 5, my scores were 680 (Q49,V33), 720 (Q49,V40), and 710 (Q49,V37). These were also completed during the past 2-3 weeks.

Goals:
3) What is your overall goal score? 720 or 730. If i can score higher then I wouldn't be too disappointed :)
4) What Schools are you planning to apply to? London Business School and Columbia are my first choices. I'm also considering MIT-Sloan, UPenn-Wharton, INSEAD and NYU-Stern
5) What are the exact application deadlines that you are facing? Round 2 deadlines which mostly fall during the first week of January

You might also choose to purchase the Enhanced Score Report. 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 on Test Day (and what you should work on to score higher). If you purchase the ESR, then I'll be happy to analyze it for you. I decided to cancel my scores right after my exam. Can I still purchase the ESR?

Many thanks for the help, I really appreciate it!

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Re: 670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Nov 2019, 15:28
Hi NGMATK,

Many GMATers spend 3 months (or more) of consistent study time before they hit their 'peak' scores, so with just 2 months of study, it's likely that you just have not put in enough time and effort to have scored higher yet. While you might be able to hone the necessary skills to pick up those points in 2-3 weeks, there's a strong chance that it will likely take at least another month (or more) of consistent, guided study to get to the point that you can consistently score at that higher level.

You CAN order an Enhanced Score Report - even after you have cancelled your Official Score - and that data could be really helpful in planning out this next phase of your studies.

1) What study materials are you currently using?
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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670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 22 Nov 2019, 16:09
EMPOWERgmatRichC Hi Rich,

I haven't started studying since my exam but as described in my initial post, I solved almost all GMAT Official Questions for both the verbal and quantitative sections. For quantitative prep, I used MGMAT. For CR, I used Powerscore CR Bible and MGMAT. For RC and SC, I only relied on solving questions from the Official Guides. Note that I am more confident when it comes to SC and RC than when it comes to CR. I can study around 20 hours a week. Please take into consideration that I'm planning to sit for the GMAT again around mid-December.

I've attached my ESR. Surprisingly, my performance in SC was the worst. However, it was the section that I was most comfortable with prior to my exam. Please feel free to comment.

Awaiting your advice.
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Originally posted by NGMATK on 22 Nov 2019, 05:03.
Last edited by NGMATK on 22 Nov 2019, 16:09, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Nov 2019, 11:48
Hi NGMATK,

Before you can include attachments to your posts/PMs, you need at least 5 posts in the forums (right now, you have just 4). If you simply respond to this post, then you should be able to go back and include an attachment on your original post - and then I'll be happy to analyze your ESR for you. That data will be quite useful in determining how you should proceed with this next phase of your studies.

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Re: 670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Nov 2019, 16:08
EMPOWERgmatRichC You're right, I couldn't attach it to my previous post. I'll attach it now. Please let me know what you think.
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Re: 670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Nov 2019, 16:57
First, thanks for sharing your test and preparation experiences with the people here. All experiences are valued and noone should feel hesistant to share regardless of their actual scores.

Coming to your questions:

1. Your quantitative score is very good. Pacing can be managed if you are strategic with identifying the easy-medium from the harder questions and budgeting time accordingly. Quant skills, like verbal, can weaken in a matter of weeks, so it may be helpful to continue to practice solving problems regardless of how comfortable you may feel.

2. For verbal. Divide your preparation. To become good at CR and RC, you must solve many problems, preferably from the official guides. This site has plenty of them. Reading about strategies is less useful than actual engagement with real questions. I would suggest less reading strategy books and doing more practice.

Do not give in to overconfidence. If you can maintain your quant score and there is no reason to expect that you would not be able to do so, improvements in verbal will likely put you comfortably over 700. GL!
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Re: 670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Nov 2019, 12:10
Hi NGMATK,

I've sent you a PM with an analysis of your ESR and some additional questions.

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Rich
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Re: 670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Nov 2019, 19:26
Hi NGMATK,

FIrst off 670 is a great start! To improve your GMAT score to a higher level, you need to go through GMAT quant and verbal carefully to find your exact weaknesses, fill gaps in your knowledge, and strengthen your skills. The overall process will be to learn all about how to answer question types with which you currently aren't very comfortable, and do dozens of practice questions category by category, basically driving up your score point by point. For example, if you find that you are not strong in answering Number Properties questions, then carefully review the conceptual underpinnings of how to answer Number Properties questions and practice by answering 50 or more questions just from Number Properties: LCM, GCF, units digit patterns, divisibility, remainders, etc. When you are working on learning to answer questions of a particular type, start off taking your time, and then seek to speed up as you get more comfortable answering questions of that type. As you do such practice, do a thorough analysis of each question that you don't get right. If you got a remainder question wrong, ask yourself why. Did you make a careless mistake? Did you not properly apply the remainder formula? Was there a concept you did not understand in the question? By carefully analyzing your mistakes, you will be able to efficiently fix your weaknesses and in turn improve your GMAT quant skills. Number Properties is just one example; follow this process for all quant topics.

Each time you strengthen your understanding of a topic and your skill in answering questions of a particular type, you increase your odds of hitting your score goal. You know that there are types of questions that you are happy to see, types that you would rather not see, and types that you take a long time to answer correctly. Learn to more effectively answer the types of questions that you would rather not see, and make them into your favorite types. Learn to correctly answer in two minutes or less questions that you currently take five minutes to answer. By finding, say, a dozen weaker quant areas and turning them into strong areas, you will make great progress toward hitting your quant score goal. If a dozen areas turn out not to be enough, strengthen some more areas.

You can work on verbal in a similar manner. Let’s say you are reviewing Critical Reasoning. Be sure that you practice a large number of Critical Reasoning questions: Strengthen and Weaken the Argument, Resolve the Paradox, find the Conclusion, Must be True, etc. As you go through the questions, do a thorough analysis of each question that you don't get correct. If you missed a Weaken question, ask yourself why. Did you make a careless mistake? Did you not recognize what the question was asking? Did you skip over a key detail in an answer choice? Getting GMAT verbal questions right is a matter of what you know, what you see, and what you do. So, any time that you don't get one right, you can seek to identify what you had to know to get the right answer, what you had to see that you didn't see, and what you could have done differently to arrive at the correct answer.

So, work on accuracy and generally finding correct answers, work on specific weaker areas one by one to make them strong areas, and when you take a practice GMAT or the real thing, take all the time per question available to do your absolute best to get right answers consistently. The GMAT is essentially a game of seeing how many right answers you can get in the time allotted. Approach the test with that conception in mind, and focus intently on the question in front of you with one goal in mind: getting a CORRECT answer.

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

Please reach out with any further questions.
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Re: 670 GMAT on my first official attempt - Aiming for 700+   [#permalink] 25 Nov 2019, 19:26
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