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740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!

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740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Aug 2018, 09:26
3
Hi,

Given that I am going to apply from a competitive demographic pool, it only made sense that I have a healthy GMAT score to stand a chance at an admit. At this moment I have no control over my undergrad GPA, my work experience or any professional decisions that I have already made – but I could control how well I did on the GMAT.

I was pretty confident of doing well, until I got close to my 1st attempt – not hitting a 700 on any of mocks I wasn’t feeling great and rescheduled my exam to a later date.
Going at it without any change in strategy, a month later I still wasn’t at my best but chose to take the exam with the 'hope of things working out' on D-Day. Against my ‘hopes’ the exam didn’t go well and I chose to cancel the score as soon I saw it. I knew I could do better and in all honesty I did not have a choice but to do better.

What follows are things I learnt and worked on between attempts 1 and 2. I should have ideally realized my flaws during my prep but did it the hard way by actually giving the exam.
These changes are iterative and need to be revisited week after week. Do not assume that things will work out like I did; you will actually have to work on them.

After Attempt 1:
• Very Poor GMAT exam (cancelled score)
• Dismal verbal performance (V31), Quant was good
• Really low on Self-confidence
I stopped studying and took a break for more than 2 months

What I wanted:
720+

Where I failed:
No structure in my preparation process:
I was essentially throwing **** on the wall and was hoping for something to stick. My basics in Verbal were all over the place; I was referring to borrowed material and was not really learning from the mistakes I made.
Change:
This is when I read up reviews on the best Verbal courses and purchased E-GMAT Verbal Online to improve my Verbal skills. The Master Comprehension course immediately brought to notice the gaps in my understanding and the work I would need to put in to get a good score.

Randomly collated study material:
I was working of borrowed material from another GMAT training institute, but I did not have access to a chunk of the Video material and was trying to make as much sense as possible from the PDF documents.
Change:
I trusted E-GMAT and the OG for Verbal and GMAT Club and the OG for Quant. There is more than enough content and more questions than you can solve. The material is nicely curated and covers all aspects that are tested on the exam.

Not aware of my strengths or weaknesses:
I never really drilled down to understand which sections I was good at, where I was taking the most time and which topics came easiest to me.
Change:
I tried to understand my hotspots – strongest and weakest. Quant PS was by strongest section and Verbal SC was my weakest.
In my 1st attempt I gave Quant first and Verbal second but I realized that I was getting too tired by the time I got to the end of the Verbal section. I attempted a mock where I did Verbal first and Quant second. It did wonders for me, my Verbal score improved whereas my Quant score did not change. This was a big step for me.
I analyzed further to understand that Quant PnC and Mods were not my strongest sections and did the same analysis for Verbal as well. I tried spending more time on these questions during my prep and little or no time on these questions in the exam if I realized I did not know how to solve it in 30 seconds.

Poor time management – speed comes with confidence:
I always tried to check whether I was solving every question in less than 2 min. Even when I was learning.
Change:
I rehashed everything I had learnt during the prep in my 1st attempt. Started learning concepts from scratch and did not worry about timing at all.
I focused on getting accurate and only then worked on speed. Once you start hitting good scores you get a lot more confident and start realizing that the score you want is attainable.c

Making the same mistake over and over again:
I did a ton of questions leading up to my 1st attempt – and that’s all I kept doing without bothering to learn from my mistakes.
Change:
I created excel workbooks for every question/mock I gave. I analyzed every question irrespective of whether it was correct or wrong.
For the incorrect questions, I did not move forward unless I was able to satisfactorily reject 4 incorrect options. This is where E-GMATs ‘Ask the Expert’ section and GMAT CLUB forums came really handy – I would copy paste questions every time I was not satisfied with a solution on to the forum.
For correct questions I would validate if my approach to reject the incorrect options was right.

My last piece of advice is to not fight the exam: This sounds slightly cliched, but towards the end I was enjoying how challenging the exam was and how well designed it was to truly test my ability.
Try to work with a group of students taking the GMAT as well. They can work as a sounding board for any questions you have and it also works as cost effective solution when it comes to purchasing resources.

Below is the list of full mocks I gave other than GMAT Club tests:
June 24 - OG Mock: 720
June 30 – MGMAT 1: 630
July 1 – MGMAT 2: 680
July 8 – MGMAT 3: 640
July 14 – MGMAT 4: 670
July 15 – MGMAT 5: 660
July 22 - OG Mock: 720
July 28 – MGMAT 6: 700
Aug 07 - OG Mock: 750
Aug 11 - OG Mock: 730
Aug 12 - Official Attempt: 740 (Q50 V39 IR 8 AWA 5)

I am glad I was able to get a 740 but I did take over 4 months to do it (as you can see the MGMAT scores did not help in improving my confidence). Even during the actual exam I didn’t think my Verbal was going well because I distinctly remember screwing up a couple of RC questions (which was my strength in Verbal).

The secret is to continuously introspect and to try and keep the exam as low key as possible to keep the pressure at a minimum. It did well for me and I actually booked my date just 5 days before my actual exam without letting anyone know.

I hope this helps folks who are planning to write the GMAT soon.

Please let me know in case of any questions.
Thanks,
Vinayak
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Re: 740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Aug 2018, 09:59
That's great bro...
I have started gmat studies now.. Hoping to score 700+...but I'm having confusion about which book to refer and any questions bank to refer... As I'm new here..

Sent from my F103 Pro using GMAT Club Forum mobile app
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Re: 740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Aug 2018, 10:05
Vinayak Menon wrote:
Hi,

Given that I am going to apply from a competitive demographic pool, it only made sense that I have a healthy GMAT score to stand a chance at an admit. At this moment I have no control over my undergrad GPA, my work experience or any professional decisions that I have already made – but I could control how well I did on the GMAT.

I was pretty confident of doing well, until I got close to my 1st attempt – not hitting a 700 on any of mocks I wasn’t feeling great and rescheduled my exam to a later date.
Going at it without any change in strategy, a month later I still wasn’t at my best but chose to take the exam with the 'hope of things working out' on D-Day. Against my ‘hopes’ the exam didn’t go well and I chose to cancel the score as soon I saw it. I knew I could do better and in all honesty I did not have a choice but to do better.

What follows are things I learnt and worked on between attempts 1 and 2. I should have ideally realized my flaws during my prep but did it the hard way by actually giving the exam.
These changes are iterative and need to be revisited week after week. Do not assume that things will work out like I did; you will actually have to work on them.

After Attempt 1:
• Very Poor GMAT exam (cancelled score)
• Dismal verbal performance (V31), Quant was good
• Really low on Self-confidence
I stopped studying and took a break for more than 2 months

What I wanted:
720+

Where I failed:
No structure in my preparation process:
I was essentially throwing **** on the wall and was hoping for something to stick. My basics in Verbal were all over the place; I was referring to borrowed material and was not really learning from the mistakes I made.
Change:
This is when I read up reviews on the best Verbal courses and purchased E-GMAT Verbal Online to improve my Verbal skills. The Master Comprehension course immediately brought to notice the gaps in my understanding and the work I would need to put in to get a good score.

Randomly collated study material:
I was working of borrowed material from another GMAT training institute, but I did not have access to a chunk of the Video material and was trying to make as much sense as possible from the PDF documents.
Change:
I trusted E-GMAT and the OG for Verbal and GMAT Club and the OG for Quant. There is more than enough content and more questions than you can solve. The material is nicely curated and covers all aspects that are tested on the exam.

Not aware of my strengths or weaknesses:
I never really drilled down to understand which sections I was good at, where I was taking the most time and which topics came easiest to me.
Change:
I tried to understand my hotspots – strongest and weakest. Quant PS was by strongest section and Verbal SC was my weakest.
In my 1st attempt I gave Quant first and Verbal second but I realized that I was getting too tired by the time I got to the end of the Verbal section. I attempted a mock where I did Verbal first and Quant second. It did wonders for me, my Verbal score improved whereas my Quant score did not change. This was a big step for me.
I analyzed further to understand that Quant PnC and Mods were not my strongest sections and did the same analysis for Verbal as well. I tried spending more time on these questions during my prep and little or no time on these questions in the exam if I realized I did not know how to solve it in 30 seconds.

Poor time management – speed comes with confidence:
I always tried to check whether I was solving every question in less than 2 min. Even when I was learning.
Change:
I rehashed everything I had learnt during the prep in my 1st attempt. Started learning concepts from scratch and did not worry about timing at all.
I focused on getting accurate and only then worked on speed. Once you start hitting good scores you get a lot more confident and start realizing that the score you want is attainable.c

Making the same mistake over and over again:
I did a ton of questions leading up to my 1st attempt – and that’s all I kept doing without bothering to learn from my mistakes.
Change:
I created excel workbooks for every question/mock I gave. I analyzed every question irrespective of whether it was correct or wrong.
For the incorrect questions, I did not move forward unless I was able to satisfactorily reject 4 incorrect options. This is where E-GMATs ‘Ask the Expert’ section and GMAT CLUB forums came really handy – I would copy paste questions every time I was not satisfied with a solution on to the forum.
For correct questions I would validate if my approach to reject the incorrect options was right.

My last piece of advice is to not fight the exam: This sounds slightly cliched, but towards the end I was enjoying how challenging the exam was and how well designed it was to truly test my ability.
Try to work with a group of students taking the GMAT as well. They can work as a sounding board for any questions you have and it also works as cost effective solution when it comes to purchasing resources.

Below is the list of full mocks I gave other than GMAT Club tests:
June 24 - OG Mock: 720
June 30 – MGMAT 1: 630
July 1 – MGMAT 2: 680
July 8 – MGMAT 3: 640
July 14 – MGMAT 4: 670
July 15 – MGMAT 5: 660
July 22 - OG Mock: 720
July 28 – MGMAT 6: 700
Aug 07 - OG Mock: 750
Aug 11 - OG Mock: 730
Aug 12 - Official Attempt: 740 (Q50 V39 IR 8 AWA 5)

I am glad I was able to get a 740 but I did take over 4 months to do it (as you can see the MGMAT scores did not help in improving my confidence). Even during the actual exam I didn’t think my Verbal was going well because I distinctly remember screwing up a couple of RC questions (which was my strength in Verbal).

The secret is to continuously introspect and to try and keep the exam as low key as possible to keep the pressure at a minimum. It did well for me and I actually booked my date just 5 days before my actual exam without letting anyone know.

I hope this helps folks who are planning to write the GMAT soon.

Please let me know in case of any questions.
Thanks,
Vinayak



Hello Vinayak..........Congratulations on the great score. Thanks a bunch as well for the nice debrief. It is going to be really helpful for many people like me. Congratulations & Thanks Again.
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Re: 740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Aug 2018, 10:16
Vinayak Menon wrote:
Hi,

Given that I am going to apply from a competitive demographic pool, it only made sense that I have a healthy GMAT score to stand a chance at an admit. At this moment I have no control over my undergrad GPA, my work experience or any professional decisions that I have already made – but I could control how well I did on the GMAT.

I was pretty confident of doing well, until I got close to my 1st attempt – not hitting a 700 on any of mocks I wasn’t feeling great and rescheduled my exam to a later date.
Going at it without any change in strategy, a month later I still wasn’t at my best but chose to take the exam with the 'hope of things working out' on D-Day. Against my ‘hopes’ the exam didn’t go well and I chose to cancel the score as soon I saw it. I knew I could do better and in all honesty I did not have a choice but to do better.

What follows are things I learnt and worked on between attempts 1 and 2. I should have ideally realized my flaws during my prep but did it the hard way by actually giving the exam.
These changes are iterative and need to be revisited week after week. Do not assume that things will work out like I did; you will actually have to work on them.

After Attempt 1:
• Very Poor GMAT exam (cancelled score)
• Dismal verbal performance (V31), Quant was good
• Really low on Self-confidence
I stopped studying and took a break for more than 2 months

What I wanted:
720+

Where I failed:
No structure in my preparation process:
I was essentially throwing **** on the wall and was hoping for something to stick. My basics in Verbal were all over the place; I was referring to borrowed material and was not really learning from the mistakes I made.
Change:
This is when I read up reviews on the best Verbal courses and purchased E-GMAT Verbal Online to improve my Verbal skills. The Master Comprehension course immediately brought to notice the gaps in my understanding and the work I would need to put in to get a good score.

Randomly collated study material:
I was working of borrowed material from another GMAT training institute, but I did not have access to a chunk of the Video material and was trying to make as much sense as possible from the PDF documents.
Change:
I trusted E-GMAT and the OG for Verbal and GMAT Club and the OG for Quant. There is more than enough content and more questions than you can solve. The material is nicely curated and covers all aspects that are tested on the exam.

Not aware of my strengths or weaknesses:
I never really drilled down to understand which sections I was good at, where I was taking the most time and which topics came easiest to me.
Change:
I tried to understand my hotspots – strongest and weakest. Quant PS was by strongest section and Verbal SC was my weakest.
In my 1st attempt I gave Quant first and Verbal second but I realized that I was getting too tired by the time I got to the end of the Verbal section. I attempted a mock where I did Verbal first and Quant second. It did wonders for me, my Verbal score improved whereas my Quant score did not change. This was a big step for me.
I analyzed further to understand that Quant PnC and Mods were not my strongest sections and did the same analysis for Verbal as well. I tried spending more time on these questions during my prep and little or no time on these questions in the exam if I realized I did not know how to solve it in 30 seconds.

Poor time management – speed comes with confidence:
I always tried to check whether I was solving every question in less than 2 min. Even when I was learning.
Change:
I rehashed everything I had learnt during the prep in my 1st attempt. Started learning concepts from scratch and did not worry about timing at all.
I focused on getting accurate and only then worked on speed. Once you start hitting good scores you get a lot more confident and start realizing that the score you want is attainable.c

Making the same mistake over and over again:
I did a ton of questions leading up to my 1st attempt – and that’s all I kept doing without bothering to learn from my mistakes.
Change:
I created excel workbooks for every question/mock I gave. I analyzed every question irrespective of whether it was correct or wrong.
For the incorrect questions, I did not move forward unless I was able to satisfactorily reject 4 incorrect options. This is where E-GMATs ‘Ask the Expert’ section and GMAT CLUB forums came really handy – I would copy paste questions every time I was not satisfied with a solution on to the forum.
For correct questions I would validate if my approach to reject the incorrect options was right.

My last piece of advice is to not fight the exam: This sounds slightly cliched, but towards the end I was enjoying how challenging the exam was and how well designed it was to truly test my ability.
Try to work with a group of students taking the GMAT as well. They can work as a sounding board for any questions you have and it also works as cost effective solution when it comes to purchasing resources.

Below is the list of full mocks I gave other than GMAT Club tests:
June 24 - OG Mock: 720
June 30 – MGMAT 1: 630
July 1 – MGMAT 2: 680
July 8 – MGMAT 3: 640
July 14 – MGMAT 4: 670
July 15 – MGMAT 5: 660
July 22 - OG Mock: 720
July 28 – MGMAT 6: 700
Aug 07 - OG Mock: 750
Aug 11 - OG Mock: 730
Aug 12 - Official Attempt: 740 (Q50 V39 IR 8 AWA 5)

I am glad I was able to get a 740 but I did take over 4 months to do it (as you can see the MGMAT scores did not help in improving my confidence). Even during the actual exam I didn’t think my Verbal was going well because I distinctly remember screwing up a couple of RC questions (which was my strength in Verbal).

The secret is to continuously introspect and to try and keep the exam as low key as possible to keep the pressure at a minimum. It did well for me and I actually booked my date just 5 days before my actual exam without letting anyone know.

I hope this helps folks who are planning to write the GMAT soon.

Please let me know in case of any questions.
Thanks,
Vinayak


Congratulations....!! That's a real motivating story.
Stories of Change in score from low to high and the ways implementaed, inspires more people than the stories of persistent high scores (or scorers).

Thanks.
The Graceful
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..
To achieve great things, two things are needed:a plan and not quite enough time - Leonard Bernstein.

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Re: 740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Aug 2018, 10:39
Vinayak Menon wrote:
Hi,

Given that I am going to apply from a competitive demographic pool, it only made sense that I have a healthy GMAT score to stand a chance at an admit. At this moment I have no control over my undergrad GPA, my work experience or any professional decisions that I have already made – but I could control how well I did on the GMAT.

I was pretty confident of doing well, until I got close to my 1st attempt – not hitting a 700 on any of mocks I wasn’t feeling great and rescheduled my exam to a later date.
Going at it without any change in strategy, a month later I still wasn’t at my best but chose to take the exam with the 'hope of things working out' on D-Day. Against my ‘hopes’ the exam didn’t go well and I chose to cancel the score as soon I saw it. I knew I could do better and in all honesty I did not have a choice but to do better.

What follows are things I learnt and worked on between attempts 1 and 2. I should have ideally realized my flaws during my prep but did it the hard way by actually giving the exam.
These changes are iterative and need to be revisited week after week. Do not assume that things will work out like I did; you will actually have to work on them.

After Attempt 1:
• Very Poor GMAT exam (cancelled score)
• Dismal verbal performance (V31), Quant was good
• Really low on Self-confidence
I stopped studying and took a break for more than 2 months

What I wanted:
720+

Where I failed:
No structure in my preparation process:
I was essentially throwing **** on the wall and was hoping for something to stick. My basics in Verbal were all over the place; I was referring to borrowed material and was not really learning from the mistakes I made.
Change:
This is when I read up reviews on the best Verbal courses and purchased E-GMAT Verbal Online to improve my Verbal skills. The Master Comprehension course immediately brought to notice the gaps in my understanding and the work I would need to put in to get a good score.

Randomly collated study material:
I was working of borrowed material from another GMAT training institute, but I did not have access to a chunk of the Video material and was trying to make as much sense as possible from the PDF documents.
Change:
I trusted E-GMAT and the OG for Verbal and GMAT Club and the OG for Quant. There is more than enough content and more questions than you can solve. The material is nicely curated and covers all aspects that are tested on the exam.

Not aware of my strengths or weaknesses:
I never really drilled down to understand which sections I was good at, where I was taking the most time and which topics came easiest to me.
Change:
I tried to understand my hotspots – strongest and weakest. Quant PS was by strongest section and Verbal SC was my weakest.
In my 1st attempt I gave Quant first and Verbal second but I realized that I was getting too tired by the time I got to the end of the Verbal section. I attempted a mock where I did Verbal first and Quant second. It did wonders for me, my Verbal score improved whereas my Quant score did not change. This was a big step for me.
I analyzed further to understand that Quant PnC and Mods were not my strongest sections and did the same analysis for Verbal as well. I tried spending more time on these questions during my prep and little or no time on these questions in the exam if I realized I did not know how to solve it in 30 seconds.

Poor time management – speed comes with confidence:
I always tried to check whether I was solving every question in less than 2 min. Even when I was learning.
Change:
I rehashed everything I had learnt during the prep in my 1st attempt. Started learning concepts from scratch and did not worry about timing at all.
I focused on getting accurate and only then worked on speed. Once you start hitting good scores you get a lot more confident and start realizing that the score you want is attainable.c

Making the same mistake over and over again:
I did a ton of questions leading up to my 1st attempt – and that’s all I kept doing without bothering to learn from my mistakes.
Change:
I created excel workbooks for every question/mock I gave. I analyzed every question irrespective of whether it was correct or wrong.
For the incorrect questions, I did not move forward unless I was able to satisfactorily reject 4 incorrect options. This is where E-GMATs ‘Ask the Expert’ section and GMAT CLUB forums came really handy – I would copy paste questions every time I was not satisfied with a solution on to the forum.
For correct questions I would validate if my approach to reject the incorrect options was right.

My last piece of advice is to not fight the exam: This sounds slightly cliched, but towards the end I was enjoying how challenging the exam was and how well designed it was to truly test my ability.
Try to work with a group of students taking the GMAT as well. They can work as a sounding board for any questions you have and it also works as cost effective solution when it comes to purchasing resources.

Below is the list of full mocks I gave other than GMAT Club tests:
June 24 - OG Mock: 720
June 30 – MGMAT 1: 630
July 1 – MGMAT 2: 680
July 8 – MGMAT 3: 640
July 14 – MGMAT 4: 670
July 15 – MGMAT 5: 660
July 22 - OG Mock: 720
July 28 – MGMAT 6: 700
Aug 07 - OG Mock: 750
Aug 11 - OG Mock: 730
Aug 12 - Official Attempt: 740 (Q50 V39 IR 8 AWA 5)

I am glad I was able to get a 740 but I did take over 4 months to do it (as you can see the MGMAT scores did not help in improving my confidence). Even during the actual exam I didn’t think my Verbal was going well because I distinctly remember screwing up a couple of RC questions (which was my strength in Verbal).

The secret is to continuously introspect and to try and keep the exam as low key as possible to keep the pressure at a minimum. It did well for me and I actually booked my date just 5 days before my actual exam without letting anyone know.

I hope this helps folks who are planning to write the GMAT soon.

Please let me know in case of any questions.
Thanks,
Vinayak


Hi
Congrats on scoring such a good score. Thanks for a detailed debrief.
It will definitely help lot of us.
All the best for the applications.
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Re: 740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Aug 2018, 10:40
VINAYAK Menon

Congrats on your stellar score. Thanks for posting a detailed debrief.

All the very best for your applications.
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Re: 740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Aug 2018, 17:12
Great job with your GMAT! I agree that low pressure allows for peak performance on test day. Good luck with things moving forward.
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Re: 740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Sep 2018, 21:39
Just start solving questions from the GMATClub Question Pool. First find out where do you make the most errors and then pick up the books to clarify your concepts.

For GMAT Quant Preparation, GMATClub Math book is sufficient. Also, you may refer to the GMATClub Grammar book, if need be. Keep in mind that GMAT tests more than just grammar in its verbal section. What you need to do is, in addition to the grammar rules, hone your critical thinking and comprehension skills as well.

All the best!
Gautam92 wrote:
That's great bro...
I have started gmat studies now.. Hoping to score 700+...but I'm having confusion about which book to refer and any questions bank to refer... As I'm new here..

Sent from my F103 Pro using GMAT Club Forum mobile app

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Re: 740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!!  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Sep 2018, 21:43
Congratulations! Thank you for taking your time out to write a detailed debrief.
Vinayak Menon wrote:
Hi,

Given that I am going to apply from a competitive demographic pool, it only made sense that I have a healthy GMAT score to stand a chance at an admit. At this moment I have no control over my undergrad GPA, my work experience or any professional decisions that I have already made – but I could control how well I did on the GMAT.

I was pretty confident of doing well, until I got close to my 1st attempt – not hitting a 700 on any of mocks I wasn’t feeling great and rescheduled my exam to a later date.
Going at it without any change in strategy, a month later I still wasn’t at my best but chose to take the exam with the 'hope of things working out' on D-Day. Against my ‘hopes’ the exam didn’t go well and I chose to cancel the score as soon I saw it. I knew I could do better and in all honesty I did not have a choice but to do better.

What follows are things I learnt and worked on between attempts 1 and 2. I should have ideally realized my flaws during my prep but did it the hard way by actually giving the exam.
These changes are iterative and need to be revisited week after week. Do not assume that things will work out like I did; you will actually have to work on them.

After Attempt 1:
• Very Poor GMAT exam (cancelled score)
• Dismal verbal performance (V31), Quant was good
• Really low on Self-confidence
I stopped studying and took a break for more than 2 months

What I wanted:
720+

Where I failed:
No structure in my preparation process:
I was essentially throwing **** on the wall and was hoping for something to stick. My basics in Verbal were all over the place; I was referring to borrowed material and was not really learning from the mistakes I made.
Change:
This is when I read up reviews on the best Verbal courses and purchased E-GMAT Verbal Online to improve my Verbal skills. The Master Comprehension course immediately brought to notice the gaps in my understanding and the work I would need to put in to get a good score.

Randomly collated study material:
I was working of borrowed material from another GMAT training institute, but I did not have access to a chunk of the Video material and was trying to make as much sense as possible from the PDF documents.
Change:
I trusted E-GMAT and the OG for Verbal and GMAT Club and the OG for Quant. There is more than enough content and more questions than you can solve. The material is nicely curated and covers all aspects that are tested on the exam.

Not aware of my strengths or weaknesses:
I never really drilled down to understand which sections I was good at, where I was taking the most time and which topics came easiest to me.
Change:
I tried to understand my hotspots – strongest and weakest. Quant PS was by strongest section and Verbal SC was my weakest.
In my 1st attempt I gave Quant first and Verbal second but I realized that I was getting too tired by the time I got to the end of the Verbal section. I attempted a mock where I did Verbal first and Quant second. It did wonders for me, my Verbal score improved whereas my Quant score did not change. This was a big step for me.
I analyzed further to understand that Quant PnC and Mods were not my strongest sections and did the same analysis for Verbal as well. I tried spending more time on these questions during my prep and little or no time on these questions in the exam if I realized I did not know how to solve it in 30 seconds.

Poor time management – speed comes with confidence:
I always tried to check whether I was solving every question in less than 2 min. Even when I was learning.
Change:
I rehashed everything I had learnt during the prep in my 1st attempt. Started learning concepts from scratch and did not worry about timing at all.
I focused on getting accurate and only then worked on speed. Once you start hitting good scores you get a lot more confident and start realizing that the score you want is attainable.c

Making the same mistake over and over again:
I did a ton of questions leading up to my 1st attempt – and that’s all I kept doing without bothering to learn from my mistakes.
Change:
I created excel workbooks for every question/mock I gave. I analyzed every question irrespective of whether it was correct or wrong.
For the incorrect questions, I did not move forward unless I was able to satisfactorily reject 4 incorrect options. This is where E-GMATs ‘Ask the Expert’ section and GMAT CLUB forums came really handy – I would copy paste questions every time I was not satisfied with a solution on to the forum.
For correct questions I would validate if my approach to reject the incorrect options was right.

My last piece of advice is to not fight the exam: This sounds slightly cliched, but towards the end I was enjoying how challenging the exam was and how well designed it was to truly test my ability.
Try to work with a group of students taking the GMAT as well. They can work as a sounding board for any questions you have and it also works as cost effective solution when it comes to purchasing resources.

Below is the list of full mocks I gave other than GMAT Club tests:
June 24 - OG Mock: 720
June 30 – MGMAT 1: 630
July 1 – MGMAT 2: 680
July 8 – MGMAT 3: 640
July 14 – MGMAT 4: 670
July 15 – MGMAT 5: 660
July 22 - OG Mock: 720
July 28 – MGMAT 6: 700
Aug 07 - OG Mock: 750
Aug 11 - OG Mock: 730
Aug 12 - Official Attempt: 740 (Q50 V39 IR 8 AWA 5)

I am glad I was able to get a 740 but I did take over 4 months to do it (as you can see the MGMAT scores did not help in improving my confidence). Even during the actual exam I didn’t think my Verbal was going well because I distinctly remember screwing up a couple of RC questions (which was my strength in Verbal).

The secret is to continuously introspect and to try and keep the exam as low key as possible to keep the pressure at a minimum. It did well for me and I actually booked my date just 5 days before my actual exam without letting anyone know.

I hope this helps folks who are planning to write the GMAT soon.

Please let me know in case of any questions.
Thanks,
Vinayak

_________________

Stuck in the 600-700 score bracket? I welcome you to read my four-step course of action to a modest score.
I also invite you to critique and help me find flaws in my modus operandi. Thanks!

Re: 740(Q50 V39 IR8 AWA5) in my 2nd Attempt!! &nbs [#permalink] 01 Sep 2018, 21:43
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