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760 Q50 V42- Beating Verbal and the Mental Game!

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GMAT 1: 710 Q50 V36
GMAT 2: 760 Q50 V42
760 Q50 V42- Beating Verbal and the Mental Game! [#permalink]

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New post 09 Apr 2017, 09:10
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Longtime lurker- first time posting!
I am still in shock...highest verbal score I have ever received!

Took the GMAT for the first time last summer. Took 2 CATs- My first GMATPREP exam was 650 (Q48 V32 IR8). My actual GMAT score was 710 (Q50 V36 IR8 AWA6). I have a strong quant foundation and had plenty work to do on verbal (native speaker). I was pretty pleased with my 710 (although I knew I could do better in verbal) but I had a significant commitment in the fall, so I stopped studying. I don't recommend taking a long break between GMAT attempts (I took 6 months off), but it is possible to restart studying. It does not take long for the baseline skills to come back.

3.5 Months ago, I started studying again. I knew I could improve my verbal, so I went for it. I bought GMATPrep Exam Pack 1 for 2 fresh CAT's. RC was strong for me- I take a lot of notes and make a good map for every passage. Making that map prepares me for most questions. I did not spend much time on RC.

My extended score report indicated that I was weak on CR. I went very slowly through the Manhattan CR guide. I also did wrong answer analysis on every single problem in the OG (did 10 at a time, easiest to hardest). This worked really well and improved my accuracy. I mainly relied on the OG and the Verbal supplemental, but I did try some hard problems from the CR megathreads.

Sentence Correction was a beast of its own. I used the Manhattan SC guide, the Veritas Prep videos, resources from the SC board here at GMATclub, and Ron P's notes on sentence correction. I did wrong answer analysis on all of the OG problems as well (I did a mix of easy, medium, and hard questions every time). Towards the end of my prep schedule, my accuracy was lower and I realized that I was overthinking, I did not have a good strategy, and I was looking too much into the semantics and the grammar rules. I had to take a step back and focus on the meaning. I did drills to actually teach myself the MGMAT sentence correction method and learned to actually focus on meaning. My last 2 weeks I spent the majority of my time on sentence correction.

For quant, I have a strong foundation, so I did not spend too much time on quant prep. I would do sets of harder problems from the OG and train myself on the CAT's. I did wrong answer analysis to find any gaps in quant and addressed those. The two topics I had to improve on were rate problems (especially the ones with variables present) & probability w/ permutations & combinations.

The day after my last practice CAT (test week), I caught a really bad cold. Unfortunately my test week priorities switched from last minute preparation & review to getting healthy. I spent my nights drinking orange juice, reading over sentence correction notes, maybe doing a small set of problems, and sleeping a lot. The worst of the cold was over by Friday morning, but my ears were still popping a bit while I was taking the test.

I think the most important thing for me was to win the mental game. My biggest fear was to put in 3+ months of effort to only get a worse score. I shifted that thought to, "you literally have nothing to lose." I had to stop overthinking sentence correction. When I was in the test, I actually thought I was not doing well (yay adaptive tests!). I had to shut those thoughts down before and during the test. I decided to have fun with the test! The AWA is fun because you get to rip an argument to shreds. IR & Quant are like solving puzzles. Number properties questions are really fun! Verbal was where I had to work, but the reading passages can be interesting.

I treated test day as a special event (like a game day) instead of a normal day. I knew that I put in the work and the skills were there- I just needed to set myself up to peak on test day. The last 24 hours before I took the test I surrounded myself with positive influences- movies, music, and talking to friends/family. I was still getting a little nervous before going, but I found that the one thing that calmed me down the most was doing a warmup (PS 1-10 in the OG + mapping out a few AWA questions). I would have been happy with a 720 (with an improved verbal score). I was in shock when I saw my score. I believe that the positive mindset made a significant impact on my score. Now what do I do with my study time?

First CAT (April 2016)- 650 Q48 V32 IR8
First GMAT Score (June 2016)- 710 Q50 V36 IR8 AWA6

My practice test scores:
2/11 GMATPrep 1 (retake)- 710 Q49 V38
2/25 MGMAT 1- 700 Q47 V38
3/10 GMATPrep 3 (exam pack 1)- 730 Q49 V40
3/24 MGMAT 2- 680 Q47 V35
4/1 GMATPrep 4- 720 Q50 V37

4/8 GMAT (unofficial) 760 Q50 V42 IR8

Key Takeaways:
-Wrong answer analysis is a great drill for CR & SC
-Don't overthink SC, focus on meaning
-Positive mindset is key!

Resources: MGMAT Books, GMATClub forum, Veritas Prep SC Videos

Last edited by MathCat on 05 May 2017, 18:32, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 760 Q50 V42- Beating Verbal and the Mental Game! [#permalink]

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New post 24 Apr 2017, 02:06
MathCat wrote:
Longtime lurker- first time posting!
I am still in shock...highest verbal score I have ever received!

Took the GMAT for the first time last summer. Took 2 CATs- My first GMATPREP exam was 650 (Q48 V32 IR8). My actual GMAT score was 710 (Q50 V36 IR8 AWA6). I have a strong quant foundation and had plenty work to do on verbal (native speaker). I was pretty pleased with my 710 (although I knew I could do better in verbal) but I had a significant commitment in the fall, so I stopped studying. I don't recommend taking a long break between GMAT attempts (I took 6 months off), but it is possible to restart studying. It does not take long for the baseline skills to come back.

3.5 Months ago, I started studying again. I knew I could improve my verbal, so I went for it. I bought GMATPrep Exam Pack 1 for 2 fresh CAT's. RC was strong for me- I take a lot of notes and make a good map for every passage. Making that map prepares me for most questions. I did not spend much time on RC.

My extended score report indicated that I was weak on CR. I went very slowly through the Manhattan CR guide. I also did wrong answer analysis on every single problem in the OG (did 10 at a time, easiest to hardest). This worked really well and improved my accuracy. I mainly relied on the OG and the Verbal supplemental, but I did try some hard problems from the CR megathreads.

Sentence Correction was a beast of its own. I used the Manhattan SC guide, the Veritas Prep videos, resources from the SC board here at GMATclub, and Ron P's notes on sentence correction. I did wrong answer analysis on all of the OG problems as well (I did a mix of easy, medium, and hard questions every time). Towards the end of my prep schedule, my accuracy was lower and I realized that I was overthinking, I did not have a good strategy, and I was looking too much into the semantics and the grammar rules. I had to take a step back and focus on the meaning. I did drills to actually teach myself the MGMAT sentence correction method and learned to actually focus on meaning. My last 2 weeks I spent the majority of my time on sentence correction.

For quant, I have a strong foundation, so I did not spend too much time on quant prep. I would do sets of harder problems from the OG and train myself on the CAT's. I did wrong answer analysis to find any gaps in quant and addressed those. The two topics I had to improve on were rate problems (especially the ones with variables present) & probability w/ permutations & combinations.

The day after my last practice CAT (test week), I caught a really bad cold. Unfortunately my test week priorities switched from last minute preparation & review to getting healthy. I spent my nights drinking orange juice, reading over sentence correction notes, maybe doing a small set of problems, and sleeping a lot. The worst of the cold was over by Friday morning, but my ears were still popping a bit while I was taking the test.

I think the most important thing for me was to win the mental game. My biggest fear was to put in 3+ months of effort to only get a worse score. I shifted that thought to, "you literally have nothing to lose." I had to stop overthinking sentence correction. When I was in the test, I actually thought I was not doing well (yay adaptive tests!). I had to shut those thoughts down before and during the test. I decided to have fun with the test! The AWA is fun because you get to rip an argument to shreds. IR & Quant are like solving puzzles. Number properties questions are really fun! Verbal was where I had to work, but the reading passages can be interesting.

I treated test day as a special event (like a game day) instead of a normal day. I knew that I put in the work and the skills were there- I just needed to set myself up to peak on test day. The last 24 hours before I took the test I surrounded myself with positive influences- movies, music, and talking to friends/family. I was still getting a little nervous before going, but I found that the one thing that calmed me down the most was doing a warmup (PS 1-10 in the OG + mapping out a few AWA questions). I would have been happy with a 720 (with an improved verbal score). I was in shock when I saw my score. I believe that the positive mindset made a significant impact on my score. Now what do I do with my study time?

First CAT (April 2014)- 650 Q48 V32 IR8
First GMAT Score (June 2016)- 710 Q50 V36 IR8 AWA6

My practice test scores:
2/11 GMATPrep 1 (retake)- 710 Q49 V38
2/25 MGMAT 1- 700 Q47 V38
3/10 GMATPrep 3 (exam pack 1)- 730 Q49 V40
3/24 MGMAT 2- 680 Q47 V35
4/1 GMATPrep 4- 720 Q50 V37

4/8 GMAT (unofficial) 760 Q50 V42 IR8

Key Takeaways:
-Wrong answer analysis is a great drill for CR & SC
-Don't overthink SC, focus on meaning
-Positive mindset is key!

Resources: MGMAT Books, GMATClub forum, Veritas Prep SC Videos



Hey Congratulations on your score.

How was your experience with the MGMAT CAT? Did you find them helpful as I have heard the Quant section is really difficult. Is it good for verbal? Thanks
_________________

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GMAT 1: 710 Q50 V36
GMAT 2: 760 Q50 V42
Re: 760 Q50 V42- Beating Verbal and the Mental Game! [#permalink]

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New post 25 Apr 2017, 15:23
bschoolboy2017- I got the MGMAT CAT's as part of the books. I thought that you have to take them with a grain of salt. I personally thought the verbal was not so great- especially the CR questions. Good to have under your belt to feel more comfortable with the test, but don't be too upset by the score. My quant score was lower than my first practice test score ever.

I took the second one untimed so I could digest the quant problems.

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Location: United States
GMAT 1: 780 Q51 V46
GMAT 2: 800 Q51 V51
GRE 1: 340 Q170 V170
Re: 760 Q50 V42- Beating Verbal and the Mental Game! [#permalink]

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New post 03 May 2017, 12:39
Expert's post
Top Contributor
Congratulations on the amazing score, MathCat! Awesome. Especially awesome that somebody named MathCat scored above the 90th percentile on verbal!!

And a hearty yes to all of this:

Quote:
Key Takeaways:
-Wrong answer analysis is a great drill for CR & SC
-Don't overthink SC, focus on meaning
-Positive mindset is key!


Good luck with your applications!!
_________________

GMAT Club Verbal Expert | GMAT/GRE tutor at www.gmatninja.com | GMAT blog |food blog | Friendly warning: I'm really bad at PMs

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Re: 760 Q50 V42- Beating Verbal and the Mental Game!   [#permalink] 03 May 2017, 12:39
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