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680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!

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GMAT 1: 680 Q50 V31
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680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 20 Nov 2017, 11:08
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It's always a pleasure to read success stories on GMAT club, but when you are on the other side, you realize that it’s your responsibility to share one to help the other aspirants.
I scored 750(Q51, V40), with an increase from V31 to V40, and Q50 to Q51. Trust me if I can improve from 680 to 750, so can you. The key is having right direction, start believing in yourself and most importantly enjoying the preparation. Did you know that GMAT follows Newton’s third law? The more you enjoy the preparation, the better your score will be, and if you dread the preparation, the trend will be other way round.

Background

I’m a 32-year-old Mechanical Engineer, have been working at an O&G MNC as an Engineering Manager and have been married for 3 years. This info is to help you believe that no matter how busy your life is or how old you are, you can create a success story!
Like most engineering background aspirants, I loved quant part and dreaded verbal during my first 2 attempts. And the result was evident with Q50 and V31(680) in both the attempts.

First Attempt – 680(Q50, V30)
Time spent: 3 months.

In September 2016, I decided to pursue my MBA dream, and bought the OG. On reviewing the OG, I realized that I had a lot of work to do on verbal section as compared to the quant section. With my busy work schedule, I needed direction and a plan to keep me on track with the preparation, so I joined a highly ranked classroom coaching program. The philosophy of the program was to solve certain set of questions in the verbal section and discuss them in the classroom. The program was specifically focused on theory of elimination and tips and tricks to solve questions on GMAT.
After going through the program and solving several hundred questions, I felt confident that I was ready for the GMAT. I booked a slot 3 weeks in advance, and went to take the test. I was nervous, just like majority of the aspirants are before the exam.
But, once I was on verbal section I felt that the questions (except a few) were not as hard as I expected them to be, and was confident to score 700+, but GMAT proved me wrong by showing a score of 680 with V30! I cancelled the score.

Second Attempt – 680(Q50, V31)
Time spent: 3 weeks.

I was devastated after my first attempt, but at the same time I was confident of my preparation. I thought that perhaps I dint review the study material well enough, and the only thing I needed to do was to review the material once again and to take the test ASAP. So, I booked the next available slot.
Once again GMAT proved me wrong, indicating that something was just not right about my plan and direction.
Well, at this point of time I accepted the score as my fate, applied to a couple of B schools in R2, and got dinged. I moved on with my life but felt a hollowness inside of me, and once again started researching a new plan and direction for GMAT. From GMAT club, I came across e-GMAT, the game changer!

Last Attempt – 750(Q51, V40)
Time Spent: 3 Months

After finding e-GMAT through GMAT club and reading positive reviews about it, I decided to attend a free SC live session. I was impressed by the pace and effectiveness of the session and immediately enrolled in the "Verbal-Live Prep" course.
For the very first time I was having fun preparing for verbal section. I felt that it was not only an education for GMAT but also for professional life.
The very first thing I learned was how to comprehend. That sounds strange, right? It is something that we all are supposed to learn in school. Yeah, we are “supposed” to, but do we really learn it? At least I don’t remember learning it. The master comprehension module was the fundamental aspect for all the 3 sections in Verbal.
Second most important aspect that went against my acquired wisdom was to spend more time on reading and comprehending question, rather than on reviewing the answer choices. And when you are told, majority of time= 80%(on Question), you will go bananas! Isn’t it crazy, you don’t mark a question, but the answer choices to score, and yet you are told to spend less than third of your time reviewing them. Well at least to my logical brain it seemed illogical that time. But, I had no other option, since I failed trying the method I learned earlier. I trusted e-GMAT, even though my brain didn’t accept the prescription in the beginning, and it did pay off well in the end.
Once I was through my preparation, I let my brain relax, and tried to distract it from getting anxious. I decided to book the slot when I was mentally ready to take the test. On 10th November, I was going through GMAT official website, and I decided to check the available slot in the coming week. I was surprised to see a slot available the very next day morning at 9. The next day was a Saturday, I told my wife that I’m going to office to take care of some unfinished job. I dint want to feel any pressure of expectations.
I opted to go with V-Q-IR-AWA. The verbal section was relatively hard, and with 20 minutes remaining I knew I wouldn’t be able to finish. I dint try to rush though and continued with the approach I learnt during preparation. I ended up guessing the last 5 questions. Since, I was scoring consistently 51 on GMAT Club quant tests, it wasn’t difficult for me.
Honestly, after finishing verbal, I didn’t expect my score to be beyond 660-680, so when 750 popped up on the screen, I was surprised beyond imagination. On the way back home, I checked the score card multiple times, as I was not able to absorb the fact that I did it! I still check the score every other day, just to make sure that I’m not mistaken :-) .

Key Takeaways: -

1. GMAT is not a test of tricks and tips, you need a proper strategy and a solid foundation.
2. There are no shortcuts to score well.
3. What you study for GMAT is applicable not only for the test but also for every step in your professional career.
4. Understanding the meaning (Comprehension) is the most basic, but most crucial step for GMAT.
5. Sentence correction is not about elimination, but about understanding the meaning, methodically identifying the error, and finding the option that efficiently eliminates the errors.
6. Pre-thinking in a critical reasoning question can significantly reduce the time spent for solving a question.
7. When you adopt a strategy, don’t expect it to yield the result immediately. You do not become a professional driver the first time you drive a car, but if you religiously follow the instructions, in no time driving becomes a cakewalk (learned this apt example from e-gmat :-) ).
8. Enjoy your learning. The more you enjoy, the better you get in processing the info, and the better your result will be.
9. Don’t give in to your anxiety. GMAT is not a test of Grammar or maths, it’s a test of your nerves in a stressful environment.
10. Solving thousands of questions will not be as helpful as solving couple of hundred questions with the detailed review of the solutions.
11. Choose your preparation method wisely; don’t get fooled by false promises/advertisements. There are no shortcuts!

I wish everyone in this forum the very best in their GMAT journey. I am thankful to GMAT club for providing a forum to practice, discuss and read GMAT success stories. And most importantly, I'm thankful to e-GMAT for creating such a beautiful course, that helped me achieve the unthinkable.

If you think this story helped you in any way, please give Kudos, and i will know about it :-)

Originally posted by Ashish1985 on 20 Nov 2017, 04:46.
Last edited by Ashish1985 on 20 Nov 2017, 11:08, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2017, 05:06
4
Ashish1985

Congratulatons for such a stellar score. Wishing you all the best for your apps.

Sent from my SM-G610F using GMAT Club Forum mobile app
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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2017, 05:20
2
Ashish1985 wrote:
It's always a pleasure to read success stories on GMAT club, but when you are on the other side, you realize that it’s your responsibility to share one to help the other aspirants.
I scored 750(Q51, V40), with an increase from V31 to V40, and Q50 to Q51. Trust me if I can improve from 680 to 750, so can you. The key is having right direction, start believing in yourself and most importantly enjoying the preparation. Did you know that GMAT follows Newton’s third law? The more you enjoy the preparation, the better your score will be, and if you dread the preparation, the trend will be other way round.

Background

I’m a 32-year-old Mechanical Engineer, have been working at an O&G MNC as an Engineering Manager and have been married for 3 years. This info is to help you believe that no matter how busy your life is or how old you are, you can create a success story!
Like most engineering background aspirants, I loved quant part and dreaded verbal during my first 2 attempts. And the result was evident with Q50 and V31(680) in both the attempts.

First Attempt – 680(Q50, V30)
Time spent: 3 months.

In September 2016, I decided to pursue my MBA dream, and bought the OG. On reviewing the OG, I realized that I had a lot of work to do on verbal section as compared to the quant section. With my busy work schedule, I needed direction and a plan to keep me on track with the preparation, so I joined a highly ranked classroom coaching program. The philosophy of the program was to solve certain set of questions in the verbal section and discuss them in the classroom. The program was specifically focused on theory of elimination and tips and tricks to solve questions on GMAT.
After going through the program and solving several hundred questions, I felt confident that I was ready for the GMAT. I booked a slot 3 weeks in advance, and went to take the test. I was nervous, just like majority of the aspirants are before the exam.
But, once I was on verbal section I felt that the questions (except a few) were not as hard as I expected them to be, and was confident to score 700+, but GMAT proved me wrong by showing a score of 680 with V30! I cancelled the score.

Second Attempt – 680(Q50, V31)
Time spent: 3 weeks.

I was devastated after my first attempt, but at the same time I was confident of my preparation. I thought that perhaps I dint review the study material well enough, and the only thing I needed to do was to review the material once again and to take the test ASAP. So, I booked the next available slot.
Once again GMAT proved me wrong, indicating that something was just not right about my plan and direction.
Well, at this point of time I accepted the score as my fate, applied to a couple of B schools in R2, and got dinged. I moved on with my life but felt a hollowness inside of me, and once again started researching a new plan and direction for GMAT. From GMAT club, I came across e-GMAT, the game changer!

Last Attempt – 750(Q51, V40)
Time Spent: 3 Months

After finding e-GMAT through GMAT club and reading positive reviews about it, I decided to attend a free SC live session. I was impressed by the pace and effectiveness of the session and immediately enrolled in the "Verbal-Live Prep" course.
For the very first time I was having fun preparing for verbal section. I felt that it was not only an education for GMAT but also for professional life.
The very first thing I learned was how to comprehend. That sounds strange, right? It is something that we all are supposed to learn in school. Yeah, we are “supposed” to, but do we really learn it? At least I don’t remember learning it. The master comprehension module was the fundamental aspect for all the 3 sections in Verbal.
Second most important aspect that went against my acquired wisdom was to spend more time on reading and comprehending question, rather than on reviewing the answer choices. And when you are told, majority of time= 80%(on Question), you will go bananas! Isn’t it crazy, you don’t mark a question, but the answer choices to score, and yet you are told to spend less than third of your time reviewing them. Well at least to my logical brain it seemed illogical that time. But, I had no other option, since I failed trying the method I learned earlier. I trusted e-GMAT, even though my brain didn’t accept the prescription in the beginning, and it did pay off well in the end.
Once I was through my preparation, I let my brain relax, and tried to distract it from getting anxious. I decided to book the slot when I was mentally ready to take the test. On 10th November, I was going through GMAT official website, and I decided to check the available slot in the coming week. I was surprised to see a slot available the very next day morning at 9. The next day was a Saturday, I told my wife that I’m going to office to take care of some unfinished job. I dint want to feel any pressure of expectations.
I opted to go with V-Q-IR-AWA. The verbal section was relatively hard, and with 20 minutes remaining I knew I wouldn’t be able to finish. I dint try to rush though and continued with the approach I learnt during preparation. I ended up guessing the last 5 questions. Since, I was scoring consistently 51 on GMAT Club quant tests, it wasn’t difficult for me.
Honestly, after finishing verbal, I didn’t expect my score to be beyond 660-680, so when 750 popped up on the screen, I was surprised beyond imagination. On the way back home, I checked the score card multiple times, as I was not able to absorb the fact that I did it! I still check the score every other day, just to make sure that I’m not mistaken :-) .

Key Takeaways: -

1. GMAT is not a question of tricks and tips, you need a proper strategy and a solid foundation.
2. There are no shortcuts to score well.
3. What you study for GMAT is applicable not only for the test but also for every step in your professional career.
4. Understanding the meaning (Comprehension) is the most basic, but most crucial step for GMAT.
5. Sentence correction is not about elimination, but about understanding the meaning, methodically identifying the error, and finding the option that efficiently eliminates the errors.
6. Pre-thinking in a critical reasoning question can significantly reduce the time spent for solving a question.
7. When you adopt a strategy, don’t expect it to yield the result immediately. You do not become a professional driver the first time you drive a car, but if you religiously follow the instructions, in no time driving becomes a cakewalk (learned this apt example from e-gmat :-) ).
8. Enjoy your learning. The more you enjoy, the better you get in processing the info, and the better your result will be.
9. Don’t give in to your anxiety. GMAT is not a test of Grammar or maths, it’s a test of your nerves in a stressful environment.
10. Solving thousands of questions will not be as helpful as solving couple of hundred questions with the detailed review of the solutions.
11. Choose your preparation method wisely; don’t get fooled by false promises/advertisements. There are no shortcuts!

I wish everyone in this forum the very best in their GMAT journey. I am thankful to GMAT club for providing a forum to practice, discuss and read GMAT success stories. And most importantly, I'm thankful to e-GMAT for creating such a beautiful course, that helped me achieve the unthinkable.


Congratulations Ashish1985 ! 750 is a huge score! Can you please share your strategy and study plan, specially for verbal.
_________________

440 to 730: If I Can, You Can Too

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Joined: 22 Oct 2016
Posts: 9
GMAT 1: 680 Q50 V31
GMAT 2: 750 Q51 V40
Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2017, 06:16
1
adkikani

Quote:
Congratulatons for such a stellar score. Wishing you all the best for your apps.


Thanks Arpit!
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Joined: 22 Oct 2016
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GMAT 1: 680 Q50 V31
GMAT 2: 750 Q51 V40
680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 20 Nov 2017, 11:18
23
1
4
saswata4s wrote:
Ashish1985 wrote:
It's always a pleasure to read success stories on GMAT club, but when you are on the other side, you realize that it’s your responsibility to share one to help the other aspirants.
I scored 750(Q51, V40), with an increase from V31 to V40, and Q50 to Q51. Trust me if I can improve from 680 to 750, so can you. The key is having right direction, start believing in yourself and most importantly enjoying the preparation. Did you know that GMAT follows Newton’s third law? The more you enjoy the preparation, the better your score will be, and if you dread the preparation, the trend will be other way round.

Background

I’m a 32-year-old Mechanical Engineer, have been working at an O&G MNC as an Engineering Manager and have been married for 3 years. This info is to help you believe that no matter how busy your life is or how old you are, you can create a success story!
Like most engineering background aspirants, I loved quant part and dreaded verbal during my first 2 attempts. And the result was evident with Q50 and V31(680) in both the attempts.

First Attempt – 680(Q50, V30)
Time spent: 3 months.

In September 2016, I decided to pursue my MBA dream, and bought the OG. On reviewing the OG, I realized that I had a lot of work to do on verbal section as compared to the quant section. With my busy work schedule, I needed direction and a plan to keep me on track with the preparation, so I joined a highly ranked classroom coaching program. The philosophy of the program was to solve certain set of questions in the verbal section and discuss them in the classroom. The program was specifically focused on theory of elimination and tips and tricks to solve questions on GMAT.
After going through the program and solving several hundred questions, I felt confident that I was ready for the GMAT. I booked a slot 3 weeks in advance, and went to take the test. I was nervous, just like majority of the aspirants are before the exam.
But, once I was on verbal section I felt that the questions (except a few) were not as hard as I expected them to be, and was confident to score 700+, but GMAT proved me wrong by showing a score of 680 with V30! I cancelled the score.

Second Attempt – 680(Q50, V31)
Time spent: 3 weeks.

I was devastated after my first attempt, but at the same time I was confident of my preparation. I thought that perhaps I dint review the study material well enough, and the only thing I needed to do was to review the material once again and to take the test ASAP. So, I booked the next available slot.
Once again GMAT proved me wrong, indicating that something was just not right about my plan and direction.
Well, at this point of time I accepted the score as my fate, applied to a couple of B schools in R2, and got dinged. I moved on with my life but felt a hollowness inside of me, and once again started researching a new plan and direction for GMAT. From GMAT club, I came across e-GMAT, the game changer!

Last Attempt – 750(Q51, V40)
Time Spent: 3 Months

After finding e-GMAT through GMAT club and reading positive reviews about it, I decided to attend a free SC live session. I was impressed by the pace and effectiveness of the session and immediately enrolled in the "Verbal-Live Prep" course.
For the very first time I was having fun preparing for verbal section. I felt that it was not only an education for GMAT but also for professional life.
The very first thing I learned was how to comprehend. That sounds strange, right? It is something that we all are supposed to learn in school. Yeah, we are “supposed” to, but do we really learn it? At least I don’t remember learning it. The master comprehension module was the fundamental aspect for all the 3 sections in Verbal.
Second most important aspect that went against my acquired wisdom was to spend more time on reading and comprehending question, rather than on reviewing the answer choices. And when you are told, majority of time= 80%(on Question), you will go bananas! Isn’t it crazy, you don’t mark a question, but the answer choices to score, and yet you are told to spend less than third of your time reviewing them. Well at least to my logical brain it seemed illogical that time. But, I had no other option, since I failed trying the method I learned earlier. I trusted e-GMAT, even though my brain didn’t accept the prescription in the beginning, and it did pay off well in the end.
Once I was through my preparation, I let my brain relax, and tried to distract it from getting anxious. I decided to book the slot when I was mentally ready to take the test. On 10th November, I was going through GMAT official website, and I decided to check the available slot in the coming week. I was surprised to see a slot available the very next day morning at 9. The next day was a Saturday, I told my wife that I’m going to office to take care of some unfinished job. I dint want to feel any pressure of expectations.
I opted to go with V-Q-IR-AWA. The verbal section was relatively hard, and with 20 minutes remaining I knew I wouldn’t be able to finish. I dint try to rush though and continued with the approach I learnt during preparation. I ended up guessing the last 5 questions. Since, I was scoring consistently 51 on GMAT Club quant tests, it wasn’t difficult for me.
Honestly, after finishing verbal, I didn’t expect my score to be beyond 660-680, so when 750 popped up on the screen, I was surprised beyond imagination. On the way back home, I checked the score card multiple times, as I was not able to absorb the fact that I did it! I still check the score every other day, just to make sure that I’m not mistaken :-) .

Key Takeaways: -

1. GMAT is not a question of tricks and tips, you need a proper strategy and a solid foundation.
2. There are no shortcuts to score well.
3. What you study for GMAT is applicable not only for the test but also for every step in your professional career.
4. Understanding the meaning (Comprehension) is the most basic, but most crucial step for GMAT.
5. Sentence correction is not about elimination, but about understanding the meaning, methodically identifying the error, and finding the option that efficiently eliminates the errors.
6. Pre-thinking in a critical reasoning question can significantly reduce the time spent for solving a question.
7. When you adopt a strategy, don’t expect it to yield the result immediately. You do not become a professional driver the first time you drive a car, but if you religiously follow the instructions, in no time driving becomes a cakewalk (learned this apt example from e-gmat :-) ).
8. Enjoy your learning. The more you enjoy, the better you get in processing the info, and the better your result will be.
9. Don’t give in to your anxiety. GMAT is not a test of Grammar or maths, it’s a test of your nerves in a stressful environment.
10. Solving thousands of questions will not be as helpful as solving couple of hundred questions with the detailed review of the solutions.
11. Choose your preparation method wisely; don’t get fooled by false promises/advertisements. There are no shortcuts!

I wish everyone in this forum the very best in their GMAT journey. I am thankful to GMAT club for providing a forum to practice, discuss and read GMAT success stories. And most importantly, I'm thankful to e-GMAT for creating such a beautiful course, that helped me achieve the unthinkable.


Congratulations []Ashish1985[] ! 750 is a huge score! Can you please share your strategy and study plan, specially for verbal.


Thanks Saswata.
First and foremost e-GMAT has an amazing course for verbal, with a strategy and a practice forum to improve. Having said that, how you study makes a big difference.
If you can commit to spend 2 hours a day, you will be good to go in 2 months. Following are the key strategies that i followed:
1. One topic at a time. When i started Sentence correction theory, that was the only topic i was studying and was trying to improve just that. Same was the case with CR and RC.
2. Once you start preparing, don't push a pause button. It takes time to get in the groove, and once you stop, specially if you are in the middle of preparation, you tend to forget what you learned. Also, it takes more time to get in the groove again.
3. When you are practicing questions during preparation, don't get too bogged down if you get them wrong. The most important part is to review them thoroughly.Understand each right answer and the reason for it to be right, and more importantly review the wrong answer choices and understand why they are wrong. If you follow this step, half the battle is won!
4. The time spent to understand the question specially in SC and CR, reduces your time to select the right answer choice.
5. Its very crucial to understand the meaning in a SC question. Just trying to identify the error, without understanding the meaning, will lead to confusion and mistake.
6. There are no shortcuts in verbal, you have to read and understand, and over a period of time as you practice, you get used to it.
7. In RC, you have to read the passage and summarize it. You are not required to remember the whole passage; just read it in such a way that you understand the structure of it. For example: where are the points of similarities, where are the points of differences, where is author agreeing with a commonly held beliefs etc. No matter how much in depth you read an RC, you end up going back to RC to find the answer. If you just skim it, you wont know where to find the relevant info, and end up re-reading the whole passage. So the key is to read to such an extent that you understand the structure.
8. When you are done with your course and practice. Give yourself a time to relax. This part is the most overlooked part, and most of the people who are well equipped with all the tools to do well in the real test default here. When stress and anxiety take over, you may not be able to use the tools you have acquired. Pranayaam/breathing exercises is one of the good ways to tackle it. Most importantly you have to prepare yourself for the worst.
In my case when i went to write the last time, i told myself, that i probably have to write one more time, and that's okay. I kept telling myself this throughout the test, even when anxiety tried to take over in the middle of the test. I remember, i was at question 27 or 28, and suddenly my heart started beating faster and i read the same question thrice. I took a step back, closed my eyes, took couple of deep breaths, and i was in control again.
So, do whatever works for you to keep your nerves under control.
9. Eat healthy, and workout regularly(walk/jog/anything feasible), starting from your preparation till your test. You can surely find time for that!
10. Don't take more than 1 full length test in last 10 days before your exam. I made that mistake and paid the price. This definitely increases your anxiety level, no matter how you perform on those mocks.

More importantly, have fun preparing. This preparation will make you a better professional :-)

If you like my original story, please give Kudos to it. :-)

Originally posted by Ashish1985 on 20 Nov 2017, 07:11.
Last edited by Ashish1985 on 20 Nov 2017, 11:18, edited 3 times in total.
2 KUDOS received
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Joined: 28 May 2014
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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2017, 07:28
2
Ashish1985 wrote:
Thanks Saswata.
First and foremost e-GMAT has an amazing course for verbal, with a strategy and a practice forum to improve. Having said that, how you study makes a big difference.
If you can commit to spent 2 hours a day, you will be good to go in 2 months. Following are the key strategies that i followed:
1. One topic at a time. When i started Sentence correction theory, that was the only topic i was studying and was trying to improve just that. Same was the case with CR and RC.
2. Once you start preparing, don't push a pause button. It takes time to get in the groove, once you stop, specially if you are in the middle of preparation, you tend to forget what you learned, also it takes more time to get in the groove again.
3. When you are practicing questions during preparation, don't get too bogged down if you get them wrong. The most important part is to review them thoroughly, understand each right answer and the reason for it to be right, and more importantly review the wrong answer choices and understand why they are wrong. If you follow this step, half the battle is won!
4. The time spent to understand the question specially in SC and CR, reduces your time to select the right answer choice, and makes you more confident of the right answer.
5. Its very crucial to understand the meaning in a SC question, just trying to identify the error, without understanding the meaning, will lead to confusion and mistake.
6. There are no shortcuts in verbal, you have to read and understand, and over a period of time as you practice, you get used to it.
7. In RC, you have to read the passage and summarize it. You are not required to remember the whole passage, just read it in such a way that you understand the structure of it. For example where are the point of similarities, where are the points of differences, where is author agreeing with a commonly held beliefs etc. No matter how much in depth you read an RC, you end up going back to RC. If you just skim it, you wont know where to find the relevant info, and end up re reading the whole passage. So the key is to read to such an extent that you understand the structure.
8. When you are done with your course and practice. Give yourself a time to relax. This part is the most overlooked part, and most of the people who are well equipped with all the tools to do well in the real test default here. When stress and anxiety take over, you may not be able to use the tools you have acquired. Pranayaam/breathing exercises are one of the good ways to tackle it. Most importantly you have to prepare yourself for the worst.
In my case when i went to write the 4th time, i told myself, that i probably have to write one more time, and that's okay. I kept on telling me this throughout the test, even when anxiousness tried to take over in the middle of the test. I remembers, i was at question 27 or 28, and suddenly heart starting beating faster and i read the same question 3 times. I took a step back, closed my eyes took couple of deep breadths, and i was in control again.
So, do whatever works for you to keep your nerves under control.
9. Eat healthy, and workout regularly(walk/jog/anything feasible) starting from your preparation time. You always have time for that!
10. Don't take more than 1 full length test in last 10 days before your exam. I made that mistake and paid the price.

More importantly, have fun preparing. This preparation will make you a better professional :-)

If you like my original story, please give Kudos to it. :-)


Thanks Ashish1985, very nicely briefed. Best of luck for your applications! :-)
_________________

440 to 730: If I Can, You Can Too

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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2017, 08:31
1
Ashish1985 wrote:
It's always a pleasure to read success stories on GMAT club, but when you are on the other side, you realize that it’s your responsibility to share one to help the other aspirants.
I scored 750(Q51, V40), with an increase from V31 to V40, and Q50 to Q51. Trust me if I can improve from 680 to 750, so can you. The key is having right direction, start believing in yourself and most importantly enjoying the preparation. Did you know that GMAT follows Newton’s third law? The more you enjoy the preparation, the better your score will be, and if you dread the preparation, the trend will be other way round.

Background

I’m a 32-year-old Mechanical Engineer, have been working at an O&G MNC as an Engineering Manager and have been married for 3 years. This info is to help you believe that no matter how busy your life is or how old you are, you can create a success story!
Like most engineering background aspirants, I loved quant part and dreaded verbal during my first 2 attempts. And the result was evident with Q50 and V31(680) in both the attempts.

First Attempt – 680(Q50, V30)
Time spent: 3 months.

In September 2016, I decided to pursue my MBA dream, and bought the OG. On reviewing the OG, I realized that I had a lot of work to do on verbal section as compared to the quant section. With my busy work schedule, I needed direction and a plan to keep me on track with the preparation, so I joined a highly ranked classroom coaching program. The philosophy of the program was to solve certain set of questions in the verbal section and discuss them in the classroom. The program was specifically focused on theory of elimination and tips and tricks to solve questions on GMAT.
After going through the program and solving several hundred questions, I felt confident that I was ready for the GMAT. I booked a slot 3 weeks in advance, and went to take the test. I was nervous, just like majority of the aspirants are before the exam.
But, once I was on verbal section I felt that the questions (except a few) were not as hard as I expected them to be, and was confident to score 700+, but GMAT proved me wrong by showing a score of 680 with V30! I cancelled the score.

Second Attempt – 680(Q50, V31)
Time spent: 3 weeks.

I was devastated after my first attempt, but at the same time I was confident of my preparation. I thought that perhaps I dint review the study material well enough, and the only thing I needed to do was to review the material once again and to take the test ASAP. So, I booked the next available slot.
Once again GMAT proved me wrong, indicating that something was just not right about my plan and direction.
Well, at this point of time I accepted the score as my fate, applied to a couple of B schools in R2, and got dinged. I moved on with my life but felt a hollowness inside of me, and once again started researching a new plan and direction for GMAT. From GMAT club, I came across e-GMAT, the game changer!

Last Attempt – 750(Q51, V40)
Time Spent: 3 Months

After finding e-GMAT through GMAT club and reading positive reviews about it, I decided to attend a free SC live session. I was impressed by the pace and effectiveness of the session and immediately enrolled in the "Verbal-Live Prep" course.
For the very first time I was having fun preparing for verbal section. I felt that it was not only an education for GMAT but also for professional life.
The very first thing I learned was how to comprehend. That sounds strange, right? It is something that we all are supposed to learn in school. Yeah, we are “supposed” to, but do we really learn it? At least I don’t remember learning it. The master comprehension module was the fundamental aspect for all the 3 sections in Verbal.
Second most important aspect that went against my acquired wisdom was to spend more time on reading and comprehending question, rather than on reviewing the answer choices. And when you are told, majority of time= 80%(on Question), you will go bananas! Isn’t it crazy, you don’t mark a question, but the answer choices to score, and yet you are told to spend less than third of your time reviewing them. Well at least to my logical brain it seemed illogical that time. But, I had no other option, since I failed trying the method I learned earlier. I trusted e-GMAT, even though my brain didn’t accept the prescription in the beginning, and it did pay off well in the end.
Once I was through my preparation, I let my brain relax, and tried to distract it from getting anxious. I decided to book the slot when I was mentally ready to take the test. On 10th November, I was going through GMAT official website, and I decided to check the available slot in the coming week. I was surprised to see a slot available the very next day morning at 9. The next day was a Saturday, I told my wife that I’m going to office to take care of some unfinished job. I dint want to feel any pressure of expectations.
I opted to go with V-Q-IR-AWA. The verbal section was relatively hard, and with 20 minutes remaining I knew I wouldn’t be able to finish. I dint try to rush though and continued with the approach I learnt during preparation. I ended up guessing the last 5 questions. Since, I was scoring consistently 51 on GMAT Club quant tests, it wasn’t difficult for me.
Honestly, after finishing verbal, I didn’t expect my score to be beyond 660-680, so when 750 popped up on the screen, I was surprised beyond imagination. On the way back home, I checked the score card multiple times, as I was not able to absorb the fact that I did it! I still check the score every other day, just to make sure that I’m not mistaken :-) .

Key Takeaways: -

1. GMAT is not a question of tricks and tips, you need a proper strategy and a solid foundation.
2. There are no shortcuts to score well.
3. What you study for GMAT is applicable not only for the test but also for every step in your professional career.
4. Understanding the meaning (Comprehension) is the most basic, but most crucial step for GMAT.
5. Sentence correction is not about elimination, but about understanding the meaning, methodically identifying the error, and finding the option that efficiently eliminates the errors.
6. Pre-thinking in a critical reasoning question can significantly reduce the time spent for solving a question.
7. When you adopt a strategy, don’t expect it to yield the result immediately. You do not become a professional driver the first time you drive a car, but if you religiously follow the instructions, in no time driving becomes a cakewalk (learned this apt example from e-gmat :-) ).
8. Enjoy your learning. The more you enjoy, the better you get in processing the info, and the better your result will be.
9. Don’t give in to your anxiety. GMAT is not a test of Grammar or maths, it’s a test of your nerves in a stressful environment.
10. Solving thousands of questions will not be as helpful as solving couple of hundred questions with the detailed review of the solutions.
11. Choose your preparation method wisely; don’t get fooled by false promises/advertisements. There are no shortcuts!

I wish everyone in this forum the very best in their GMAT journey. I am thankful to GMAT club for providing a forum to practice, discuss and read GMAT success stories. And most importantly, I'm thankful to e-GMAT for creating such a beautiful course, that helped me achieve the unthinkable.

If you think this story helped you in any way, please give Kudos, and i will know about it :-)


Hi Ashish
Congrats a lot for your wonderful score and your very useful debrief too.
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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Nov 2017, 11:57
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Great job Ashish1985 and congratulations on the great score. Great to see that you continued even after two attempts and came back really really strong, that's a great sportsmanship.

Wish you all the best for the applications. :-)
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New post 20 Nov 2017, 19:42
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Wish you all the best for the applications. :-)[/quote]

Thanks Ydmuley! :-)
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New post 21 Nov 2017, 10:12
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Dear Ashish1985,

Congratulations on scoring 750. Its an excellent score and would make your competitive for most top B-schools. I absolutely loved you quote..

“GMAT follows Newton’s third law? The more you enjoy the preparation, the better your score will be, and if you dread the preparation, the trend will be other way round”

as well as

"Solving thousands of questions will not be as helpful as solving couple of hundred questions with the detailed review of the solutions."

Continue to stay true to the virtues of learning. Good luck for your applications!!

Regards,

Rajat Sadana
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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Nov 2017, 02:02
2
Ashish1985 wrote:
It's always a pleasure to read success stories on GMAT club, but when you are on the other side, you realize that it’s your responsibility to share one to help the other aspirants.
I scored 750(Q51, V40), with an increase from V31 to V40, and Q50 to Q51. Trust me if I can improve from 680 to 750, so can you. The key is having right direction, start believing in yourself and most importantly enjoying the preparation. Did you know that GMAT follows Newton’s third law? The more you enjoy the preparation, the better your score will be, and if you dread the preparation, the trend will be other way round.

Background

I’m a 32-year-old Mechanical Engineer, have been working at an O&G MNC as an Engineering Manager and have been married for 3 years. This info is to help you believe that no matter how busy your life is or how old you are, you can create a success story!
Like most engineering background aspirants, I loved quant part and dreaded verbal during my first 2 attempts. And the result was evident with Q50 and V31(680) in both the attempts.

First Attempt – 680(Q50, V30)
Time spent: 3 months.

In September 2016, I decided to pursue my MBA dream, and bought the OG. On reviewing the OG, I realized that I had a lot of work to do on verbal section as compared to the quant section. With my busy work schedule, I needed direction and a plan to keep me on track with the preparation, so I joined a highly ranked classroom coaching program. The philosophy of the program was to solve certain set of questions in the verbal section and discuss them in the classroom. The program was specifically focused on theory of elimination and tips and tricks to solve questions on GMAT.
After going through the program and solving several hundred questions, I felt confident that I was ready for the GMAT. I booked a slot 3 weeks in advance, and went to take the test. I was nervous, just like majority of the aspirants are before the exam.
But, once I was on verbal section I felt that the questions (except a few) were not as hard as I expected them to be, and was confident to score 700+, but GMAT proved me wrong by showing a score of 680 with V30! I cancelled the score.

Second Attempt – 680(Q50, V31)
Time spent: 3 weeks.

I was devastated after my first attempt, but at the same time I was confident of my preparation. I thought that perhaps I dint review the study material well enough, and the only thing I needed to do was to review the material once again and to take the test ASAP. So, I booked the next available slot.
Once again GMAT proved me wrong, indicating that something was just not right about my plan and direction.
Well, at this point of time I accepted the score as my fate, applied to a couple of B schools in R2, and got dinged. I moved on with my life but felt a hollowness inside of me, and once again started researching a new plan and direction for GMAT. From GMAT club, I came across e-GMAT, the game changer!

Last Attempt – 750(Q51, V40)
Time Spent: 3 Months

After finding e-GMAT through GMAT club and reading positive reviews about it, I decided to attend a free SC live session. I was impressed by the pace and effectiveness of the session and immediately enrolled in the "Verbal-Live Prep" course.
For the very first time I was having fun preparing for verbal section. I felt that it was not only an education for GMAT but also for professional life.
The very first thing I learned was how to comprehend. That sounds strange, right? It is something that we all are supposed to learn in school. Yeah, we are “supposed” to, but do we really learn it? At least I don’t remember learning it. The master comprehension module was the fundamental aspect for all the 3 sections in Verbal.
Second most important aspect that went against my acquired wisdom was to spend more time on reading and comprehending question, rather than on reviewing the answer choices. And when you are told, majority of time= 80%(on Question), you will go bananas! Isn’t it crazy, you don’t mark a question, but the answer choices to score, and yet you are told to spend less than third of your time reviewing them. Well at least to my logical brain it seemed illogical that time. But, I had no other option, since I failed trying the method I learned earlier. I trusted e-GMAT, even though my brain didn’t accept the prescription in the beginning, and it did pay off well in the end.
Once I was through my preparation, I let my brain relax, and tried to distract it from getting anxious. I decided to book the slot when I was mentally ready to take the test. On 10th November, I was going through GMAT official website, and I decided to check the available slot in the coming week. I was surprised to see a slot available the very next day morning at 9. The next day was a Saturday, I told my wife that I’m going to office to take care of some unfinished job. I dint want to feel any pressure of expectations.
I opted to go with V-Q-IR-AWA. The verbal section was relatively hard, and with 20 minutes remaining I knew I wouldn’t be able to finish. I dint try to rush though and continued with the approach I learnt during preparation. I ended up guessing the last 5 questions. Since, I was scoring consistently 51 on GMAT Club quant tests, it wasn’t difficult for me.
Honestly, after finishing verbal, I didn’t expect my score to be beyond 660-680, so when 750 popped up on the screen, I was surprised beyond imagination. On the way back home, I checked the score card multiple times, as I was not able to absorb the fact that I did it! I still check the score every other day, just to make sure that I’m not mistaken :-) .

Key Takeaways: -

1. GMAT is not a test of tricks and tips, you need a proper strategy and a solid foundation.
2. There are no shortcuts to score well.
3. What you study for GMAT is applicable not only for the test but also for every step in your professional career.
4. Understanding the meaning (Comprehension) is the most basic, but most crucial step for GMAT.
5. Sentence correction is not about elimination, but about understanding the meaning, methodically identifying the error, and finding the option that efficiently eliminates the errors.
6. Pre-thinking in a critical reasoning question can significantly reduce the time spent for solving a question.
7. When you adopt a strategy, don’t expect it to yield the result immediately. You do not become a professional driver the first time you drive a car, but if you religiously follow the instructions, in no time driving becomes a cakewalk (learned this apt example from e-gmat :-) ).
8. Enjoy your learning. The more you enjoy, the better you get in processing the info, and the better your result will be.
9. Don’t give in to your anxiety. GMAT is not a test of Grammar or maths, it’s a test of your nerves in a stressful environment.
10. Solving thousands of questions will not be as helpful as solving couple of hundred questions with the detailed review of the solutions.
11. Choose your preparation method wisely; don’t get fooled by false promises/advertisements. There are no shortcuts!

I wish everyone in this forum the very best in their GMAT journey. I am thankful to GMAT club for providing a forum to practice, discuss and read GMAT success stories. And most importantly, I'm thankful to e-GMAT for creating such a beautiful course, that helped me achieve the unthinkable.

If you think this story helped you in any way, please give Kudos, and i will know about it :-)


Congrats on your score buddy. E-GMAT is such a wonderful course.
All the best for your applications

Regards,
Bharath
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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Nov 2017, 02:08
Bharath99 wrote:
Ashish1985 wrote:
It's always a pleasure to read success stories on GMAT club, but when you are on the other side, you realize that it’s your responsibility to share one to help the other aspirants.
I scored 750(Q51, V40), with an increase from V31 to V40, and Q50 to Q51. Trust me if I can improve from 680 to 750, so can you. The key is having right direction, start believing in yourself and most importantly enjoying the preparation. Did you know that GMAT follows Newton’s third law? The more you enjoy the preparation, the better your score will be, and if you dread the preparation, the trend will be other way round.

Background

I’m a 32-year-old Mechanical Engineer, have been working at an O&G MNC as an Engineering Manager and have been married for 3 years. This info is to help you believe that no matter how busy your life is or how old you are, you can create a success story!
Like most engineering background aspirants, I loved quant part and dreaded verbal during my first 2 attempts. And the result was evident with Q50 and V31(680) in both the attempts.

First Attempt – 680(Q50, V30)
Time spent: 3 months.

In September 2016, I decided to pursue my MBA dream, and bought the OG. On reviewing the OG, I realized that I had a lot of work to do on verbal section as compared to the quant section. With my busy work schedule, I needed direction and a plan to keep me on track with the preparation, so I joined a highly ranked classroom coaching program. The philosophy of the program was to solve certain set of questions in the verbal section and discuss them in the classroom. The program was specifically focused on theory of elimination and tips and tricks to solve questions on GMAT.
After going through the program and solving several hundred questions, I felt confident that I was ready for the GMAT. I booked a slot 3 weeks in advance, and went to take the test. I was nervous, just like majority of the aspirants are before the exam.
But, once I was on verbal section I felt that the questions (except a few) were not as hard as I expected them to be, and was confident to score 700+, but GMAT proved me wrong by showing a score of 680 with V30! I cancelled the score.

Second Attempt – 680(Q50, V31)
Time spent: 3 weeks.

I was devastated after my first attempt, but at the same time I was confident of my preparation. I thought that perhaps I dint review the study material well enough, and the only thing I needed to do was to review the material once again and to take the test ASAP. So, I booked the next available slot.
Once again GMAT proved me wrong, indicating that something was just not right about my plan and direction.
Well, at this point of time I accepted the score as my fate, applied to a couple of B schools in R2, and got dinged. I moved on with my life but felt a hollowness inside of me, and once again started researching a new plan and direction for GMAT. From GMAT club, I came across e-GMAT, the game changer!

Last Attempt – 750(Q51, V40)
Time Spent: 3 Months

After finding e-GMAT through GMAT club and reading positive reviews about it, I decided to attend a free SC live session. I was impressed by the pace and effectiveness of the session and immediately enrolled in the "Verbal-Live Prep" course.
For the very first time I was having fun preparing for verbal section. I felt that it was not only an education for GMAT but also for professional life.
The very first thing I learned was how to comprehend. That sounds strange, right? It is something that we all are supposed to learn in school. Yeah, we are “supposed” to, but do we really learn it? At least I don’t remember learning it. The master comprehension module was the fundamental aspect for all the 3 sections in Verbal.
Second most important aspect that went against my acquired wisdom was to spend more time on reading and comprehending question, rather than on reviewing the answer choices. And when you are told, majority of time= 80%(on Question), you will go bananas! Isn’t it crazy, you don’t mark a question, but the answer choices to score, and yet you are told to spend less than third of your time reviewing them. Well at least to my logical brain it seemed illogical that time. But, I had no other option, since I failed trying the method I learned earlier. I trusted e-GMAT, even though my brain didn’t accept the prescription in the beginning, and it did pay off well in the end.
Once I was through my preparation, I let my brain relax, and tried to distract it from getting anxious. I decided to book the slot when I was mentally ready to take the test. On 10th November, I was going through GMAT official website, and I decided to check the available slot in the coming week. I was surprised to see a slot available the very next day morning at 9. The next day was a Saturday, I told my wife that I’m going to office to take care of some unfinished job. I dint want to feel any pressure of expectations.
I opted to go with V-Q-IR-AWA. The verbal section was relatively hard, and with 20 minutes remaining I knew I wouldn’t be able to finish. I dint try to rush though and continued with the approach I learnt during preparation. I ended up guessing the last 5 questions. Since, I was scoring consistently 51 on GMAT Club quant tests, it wasn’t difficult for me.
Honestly, after finishing verbal, I didn’t expect my score to be beyond 660-680, so when 750 popped up on the screen, I was surprised beyond imagination. On the way back home, I checked the score card multiple times, as I was not able to absorb the fact that I did it! I still check the score every other day, just to make sure that I’m not mistaken :-) .

Key Takeaways: -

1. GMAT is not a test of tricks and tips, you need a proper strategy and a solid foundation.
2. There are no shortcuts to score well.
3. What you study for GMAT is applicable not only for the test but also for every step in your professional career.
4. Understanding the meaning (Comprehension) is the most basic, but most crucial step for GMAT.
5. Sentence correction is not about elimination, but about understanding the meaning, methodically identifying the error, and finding the option that efficiently eliminates the errors.
6. Pre-thinking in a critical reasoning question can significantly reduce the time spent for solving a question.
7. When you adopt a strategy, don’t expect it to yield the result immediately. You do not become a professional driver the first time you drive a car, but if you religiously follow the instructions, in no time driving becomes a cakewalk (learned this apt example from e-gmat :-) ).
8. Enjoy your learning. The more you enjoy, the better you get in processing the info, and the better your result will be.
9. Don’t give in to your anxiety. GMAT is not a test of Grammar or maths, it’s a test of your nerves in a stressful environment.
10. Solving thousands of questions will not be as helpful as solving couple of hundred questions with the detailed review of the solutions.
11. Choose your preparation method wisely; don’t get fooled by false promises/advertisements. There are no shortcuts!

I wish everyone in this forum the very best in their GMAT journey. I am thankful to GMAT club for providing a forum to practice, discuss and read GMAT success stories. And most importantly, I'm thankful to e-GMAT for creating such a beautiful course, that helped me achieve the unthinkable.

If you think this story helped you in any way, please give Kudos, and i will know about it :-)


Congrats on your score buddy. E-GMAT is such a wonderful course.
All the best for your applications

Regards,
Bharath


Thanks Bharath :-)
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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Nov 2017, 06:59
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Hi Ashish, first of all congratulations for the stellar score. I am also from a similar background and similar work ex as yours but not given GMAT yet. May I know what methodology are you going to follow for selecting colleges for mba

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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Nov 2017, 08:56
1
Ashish1985 wrote:
It's always a pleasure to read success stories on GMAT club, but when you are on the other side, you realize that it’s your responsibility to share one to help the other aspirants.
I scored 750(Q51, V40), with an increase from V31 to V40, and Q50 to Q51. Trust me if I can improve from 680 to 750, so can you. The key is having right direction, start believing in yourself and most importantly enjoying the preparation. Did you know that GMAT follows Newton’s third law? The more you enjoy the preparation, the better your score will be, and if you dread the preparation, the trend will be other way round.

Background

I’m a 32-year-old Mechanical Engineer, have been working at an O&G MNC as an Engineering Manager and have been married for 3 years. This info is to help you believe that no matter how busy your life is or how old you are, you can create a success story!
Like most engineering background aspirants, I loved quant part and dreaded verbal during my first 2 attempts. And the result was evident with Q50 and V31(680) in both the attempts.

First Attempt – 680(Q50, V30)
Time spent: 3 months.

In September 2016, I decided to pursue my MBA dream, and bought the OG. On reviewing the OG, I realized that I had a lot of work to do on verbal section as compared to the quant section. With my busy work schedule, I needed direction and a plan to keep me on track with the preparation, so I joined a highly ranked classroom coaching program. The philosophy of the program was to solve certain set of questions in the verbal section and discuss them in the classroom. The program was specifically focused on theory of elimination and tips and tricks to solve questions on GMAT.
After going through the program and solving several hundred questions, I felt confident that I was ready for the GMAT. I booked a slot 3 weeks in advance, and went to take the test. I was nervous, just like majority of the aspirants are before the exam.
But, once I was on verbal section I felt that the questions (except a few) were not as hard as I expected them to be, and was confident to score 700+, but GMAT proved me wrong by showing a score of 680 with V30! I cancelled the score.

Second Attempt – 680(Q50, V31)
Time spent: 3 weeks.

I was devastated after my first attempt, but at the same time I was confident of my preparation. I thought that perhaps I dint review the study material well enough, and the only thing I needed to do was to review the material once again and to take the test ASAP. So, I booked the next available slot.
Once again GMAT proved me wrong, indicating that something was just not right about my plan and direction.
Well, at this point of time I accepted the score as my fate, applied to a couple of B schools in R2, and got dinged. I moved on with my life but felt a hollowness inside of me, and once again started researching a new plan and direction for GMAT. From GMAT club, I came across e-GMAT, the game changer!

Last Attempt – 750(Q51, V40)
Time Spent: 3 Months

After finding e-GMAT through GMAT club and reading positive reviews about it, I decided to attend a free SC live session. I was impressed by the pace and effectiveness of the session and immediately enrolled in the "Verbal-Live Prep" course.
For the very first time I was having fun preparing for verbal section. I felt that it was not only an education for GMAT but also for professional life.
The very first thing I learned was how to comprehend. That sounds strange, right? It is something that we all are supposed to learn in school. Yeah, we are “supposed” to, but do we really learn it? At least I don’t remember learning it. The master comprehension module was the fundamental aspect for all the 3 sections in Verbal.
Second most important aspect that went against my acquired wisdom was to spend more time on reading and comprehending question, rather than on reviewing the answer choices. And when you are told, majority of time= 80%(on Question), you will go bananas! Isn’t it crazy, you don’t mark a question, but the answer choices to score, and yet you are told to spend less than third of your time reviewing them. Well at least to my logical brain it seemed illogical that time. But, I had no other option, since I failed trying the method I learned earlier. I trusted e-GMAT, even though my brain didn’t accept the prescription in the beginning, and it did pay off well in the end.
Once I was through my preparation, I let my brain relax, and tried to distract it from getting anxious. I decided to book the slot when I was mentally ready to take the test. On 10th November, I was going through GMAT official website, and I decided to check the available slot in the coming week. I was surprised to see a slot available the very next day morning at 9. The next day was a Saturday, I told my wife that I’m going to office to take care of some unfinished job. I dint want to feel any pressure of expectations.
I opted to go with V-Q-IR-AWA. The verbal section was relatively hard, and with 20 minutes remaining I knew I wouldn’t be able to finish. I dint try to rush though and continued with the approach I learnt during preparation. I ended up guessing the last 5 questions. Since, I was scoring consistently 51 on GMAT Club quant tests, it wasn’t difficult for me.
Honestly, after finishing verbal, I didn’t expect my score to be beyond 660-680, so when 750 popped up on the screen, I was surprised beyond imagination. On the way back home, I checked the score card multiple times, as I was not able to absorb the fact that I did it! I still check the score every other day, just to make sure that I’m not mistaken :-) .

Key Takeaways: -

1. GMAT is not a test of tricks and tips, you need a proper strategy and a solid foundation.
2. There are no shortcuts to score well.
3. What you study for GMAT is applicable not only for the test but also for every step in your professional career.
4. Understanding the meaning (Comprehension) is the most basic, but most crucial step for GMAT.
5. Sentence correction is not about elimination, but about understanding the meaning, methodically identifying the error, and finding the option that efficiently eliminates the errors.
6. Pre-thinking in a critical reasoning question can significantly reduce the time spent for solving a question.
7. When you adopt a strategy, don’t expect it to yield the result immediately. You do not become a professional driver the first time you drive a car, but if you religiously follow the instructions, in no time driving becomes a cakewalk (learned this apt example from e-gmat :-) ).
8. Enjoy your learning. The more you enjoy, the better you get in processing the info, and the better your result will be.
9. Don’t give in to your anxiety. GMAT is not a test of Grammar or maths, it’s a test of your nerves in a stressful environment.
10. Solving thousands of questions will not be as helpful as solving couple of hundred questions with the detailed review of the solutions.
11. Choose your preparation method wisely; don’t get fooled by false promises/advertisements. There are no shortcuts!

I wish everyone in this forum the very best in their GMAT journey. I am thankful to GMAT club for providing a forum to practice, discuss and read GMAT success stories. And most importantly, I'm thankful to e-GMAT for creating such a beautiful course, that helped me achieve the unthinkable.

If you think this story helped you in any way, please give Kudos, and i will know about it :-)


Congrats Ashish1985 !! Best wishes for your applications :-)
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680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Feb 2018, 01:00
Ashish1985 wrote:
It's always a pleasure to read success stories on GMAT club, but when you are on the other side, you realize that it’s your responsibility to share one to help the other aspirants.
I scored 750(Q51, V40), with an increase from V31 to V40, and Q50 to Q51. Trust me if I can improve from 680 to 750, so can you. The key is having right direction, start believing in yourself and most importantly enjoying the preparation. Did you know that GMAT follows Newton’s third law? The more you enjoy the preparation, the better your score will be, and if you dread the preparation, the trend will be other way round.

Background

I’m a 32-year-old Mechanical Engineer, have been working at an O&G MNC as an Engineering Manager and have been married for 3 years. This info is to help you believe that no matter how busy your life is or how old you are, you can create a success story!
Like most engineering background aspirants, I loved quant part and dreaded verbal during my first 2 attempts. And the result was evident with Q50 and V31(680) in both the attempts.

First Attempt – 680(Q50, V30)
Time spent: 3 months.

In September 2016, I decided to pursue my MBA dream, and bought the OG. On reviewing the OG, I realized that I had a lot of work to do on verbal section as compared to the quant section. With my busy work schedule, I needed direction and a plan to keep me on track with the preparation, so I joined a highly ranked classroom coaching program. The philosophy of the program was to solve certain set of questions in the verbal section and discuss them in the classroom. The program was specifically focused on theory of elimination and tips and tricks to solve questions on GMAT.
After going through the program and solving several hundred questions, I felt confident that I was ready for the GMAT. I booked a slot 3 weeks in advance, and went to take the test. I was nervous, just like majority of the aspirants are before the exam.
But, once I was on verbal section I felt that the questions (except a few) were not as hard as I expected them to be, and was confident to score 700+, but GMAT proved me wrong by showing a score of 680 with V30! I cancelled the score.

Second Attempt – 680(Q50, V31)
Time spent: 3 weeks.

I was devastated after my first attempt, but at the same time I was confident of my preparation. I thought that perhaps I dint review the study material well enough, and the only thing I needed to do was to review the material once again and to take the test ASAP. So, I booked the next available slot.
Once again GMAT proved me wrong, indicating that something was just not right about my plan and direction.
Well, at this point of time I accepted the score as my fate, applied to a couple of B schools in R2, and got dinged. I moved on with my life but felt a hollowness inside of me, and once again started researching a new plan and direction for GMAT. From GMAT club, I came across e-GMAT, the game changer!

Last Attempt – 750(Q51, V40)
Time Spent: 3 Months

After finding e-GMAT through GMAT club and reading positive reviews about it, I decided to attend a free SC live session. I was impressed by the pace and effectiveness of the session and immediately enrolled in the "Verbal-Live Prep" course.
For the very first time I was having fun preparing for verbal section. I felt that it was not only an education for GMAT but also for professional life.
The very first thing I learned was how to comprehend. That sounds strange, right? It is something that we all are supposed to learn in school. Yeah, we are “supposed” to, but do we really learn it? At least I don’t remember learning it. The master comprehension module was the fundamental aspect for all the 3 sections in Verbal.
Second most important aspect that went against my acquired wisdom was to spend more time on reading and comprehending question, rather than on reviewing the answer choices. And when you are told, majority of time= 80%(on Question), you will go bananas! Isn’t it crazy, you don’t mark a question, but the answer choices to score, and yet you are told to spend less than third of your time reviewing them. Well at least to my logical brain it seemed illogical that time. But, I had no other option, since I failed trying the method I learned earlier. I trusted e-GMAT, even though my brain didn’t accept the prescription in the beginning, and it did pay off well in the end.
Once I was through my preparation, I let my brain relax, and tried to distract it from getting anxious. I decided to book the slot when I was mentally ready to take the test. On 10th November, I was going through GMAT official website, and I decided to check the available slot in the coming week. I was surprised to see a slot available the very next day morning at 9. The next day was a Saturday, I told my wife that I’m going to office to take care of some unfinished job. I dint want to feel any pressure of expectations.
I opted to go with V-Q-IR-AWA. The verbal section was relatively hard, and with 20 minutes remaining I knew I wouldn’t be able to finish. I dint try to rush though and continued with the approach I learnt during preparation. I ended up guessing the last 5 questions. Since, I was scoring consistently 51 on GMAT Club quant tests, it wasn’t difficult for me.
Honestly, after finishing verbal, I didn’t expect my score to be beyond 660-680, so when 750 popped up on the screen, I was surprised beyond imagination. On the way back home, I checked the score card multiple times, as I was not able to absorb the fact that I did it! I still check the score every other day, just to make sure that I’m not mistaken :-) .

Key Takeaways: -

1. GMAT is not a test of tricks and tips, you need a proper strategy and a solid foundation.
2. There are no shortcuts to score well.
3. What you study for GMAT is applicable not only for the test but also for every step in your professional career.
4. Understanding the meaning (Comprehension) is the most basic, but most crucial step for GMAT.
5. Sentence correction is not about elimination, but about understanding the meaning, methodically identifying the error, and finding the option that efficiently eliminates the errors.
6. Pre-thinking in a critical reasoning question can significantly reduce the time spent for solving a question.
7. When you adopt a strategy, don’t expect it to yield the result immediately. You do not become a professional driver the first time you drive a car, but if you religiously follow the instructions, in no time driving becomes a cakewalk (learned this apt example from e-gmat :-) ).
8. Enjoy your learning. The more you enjoy, the better you get in processing the info, and the better your result will be.
9. Don’t give in to your anxiety. GMAT is not a test of Grammar or maths, it’s a test of your nerves in a stressful environment.
10. Solving thousands of questions will not be as helpful as solving couple of hundred questions with the detailed review of the solutions.
11. Choose your preparation method wisely; don’t get fooled by false promises/advertisements. There are no shortcuts!

I wish everyone in this forum the very best in their GMAT journey. I am thankful to GMAT club for providing a forum to practice, discuss and read GMAT success stories. And most importantly, I'm thankful to e-GMAT for creating such a beautiful course, that helped me achieve the unthinkable.

If you think this story helped you in any way, please give Kudos, and i will know about it :-)


--------------------------------------------------------
Ashish,

Congratulations for such a great score!

Can you please share your IR and AWA scores?
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Best,
Spiritual Yoda

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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Feb 2018, 14:57
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Hi Ashish1985 ,

Congrats on the verified 70-point improvement, and thanks for sharing your lessons learned! If you are willing to share your ESR and/or your IR/AWA scores as well, then that would be great. Your ESR would also be useful in learning how many questions wrong earned you a V40 (91%) the second time around. Based on previous ESRs, I'm guessing on 6 or 7 wrong, as opposed to a V31 (62%) the first time, which is closer to 12-14 questions wrong. You obviously cracked down hard on Verbal...nice work.

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One of the only known humans to have taken the GMAT 5 times and scored in the 700s every time (700, 710, 730, 750, 770), including verified section scores of Q50 / V47, as well as personal bests of 8/8 IR (2 times), 6/6 AWA (4 times), 50/51Q and 48/51V (1 question wrong).

You can download my official test-taker score report (all scores within the last 5 years) directly from the Pearson Vue website: https://tinyurl.com/y94hlarr Date of Birth: 09 December 1979.

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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Feb 2018, 20:04
mcelroytutoring - While Ashish shares is ESR, here is another success story (with ESR) that you may be interested to evaluate.

https://gmatclub.com/forum/a-long-journ ... 48550.html

This guy improved to V40 with ~12 incorrect questions.

Regards,

Rajat Sadana
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680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Feb 2018, 20:51
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egmat wrote:
mcelroytutoring - While Ashish shares is ESR, here is another success story (with ESR) that you may be interested to evaluate.

https://gmatclub.com/forum/a-long-journ ... 48550.html

This guy improved to V40 with ~12 incorrect questions.

Regards,

Rajat Sadana

Hi Rajat, thanks for the link. Yes, this student scored a V40 with 10 incorrect questions!

Image

1st quarter: 7/8 = 88% (1 wrong)
2nd quarter: 5/7 = 71% (2 wrong)
3rd quarter: 4/7 = 57% (3 wrong)
4th quarter: 4/8 = 50% (4 wrong)
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Harvard grad and 99% GMAT scorer, offering expert, private GMAT tutoring and coaching, both in-person (San Diego, CA, USA) and online worldwide, since 2002.

One of the only known humans to have taken the GMAT 5 times and scored in the 700s every time (700, 710, 730, 750, 770), including verified section scores of Q50 / V47, as well as personal bests of 8/8 IR (2 times), 6/6 AWA (4 times), 50/51Q and 48/51V (1 question wrong).

You can download my official test-taker score report (all scores within the last 5 years) directly from the Pearson Vue website: https://tinyurl.com/y94hlarr Date of Birth: 09 December 1979.

GMAT Action Plan and Free E-Book - McElroy Tutoring

Contact: mcelroy@post.harvard.edu

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Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey!  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Mar 2018, 23:11
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Ashish1985

This is a wonderful debrief. I liked the strategy points you followed during your preparation and also the way the debrief is organized is awesome.

All the best for your applications

Thanks
Raghu
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Resources
Ultimate GMAT Quantitative Megathread | ALL YOU NEED FOR QUANT ! ! ! | SC Blogs by Magoosh | How to improve your verbal score | Things i wish i could've done earlier | Ultimate Q51 Guide

Re: 680 to 750 - An adventurous Journey! &nbs [#permalink] 01 Mar 2018, 23:11
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