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# Advice and tips for a 620 aiming for 690

Author Message
Intern
Joined: 17 Jun 2018
Posts: 2

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25 Oct 2018, 12:28
Hi everyone,

I plan to rewrite my gmat for the third time where in the first time I got 590 (V34 Q36) and this time I got a 620 with Q37V38.

In the practice gmat tests, I am hitting 730 in the official gmat ones and about 660 in other ones, so I am assuming that I am screwing big time when I write the test. I was wondering if anyone had a strategy to go from 620 to 690.

What courses would be the best ? I am debating between Magoosh and beat the gmat.
I have done Manhattan and my issue with them is they don’t give you enough opportunities to practice the questions, or atleast the difficult ones.

I know my timing needs to improve because in quant I always spend only about 40 seconds per question in the last area because of time shortage. Any tips or strategies in timing would be helpful too, I am now going with the intention to skip every 5th question.

Posted from my mobile device
RC Moderator
Joined: 24 Aug 2016
Posts: 642
Concentration: Entrepreneurship, Operations
GMAT 1: 630 Q48 V28
GMAT 2: 540 Q49 V16

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25 Oct 2018, 16:19
1
Nervouskid wrote:
Hi everyone,

I plan to rewrite my gmat for the third time where in the first time I got 590 (V34 Q36) and this time I got a 620 with Q37V38.

In the practice gmat tests, I am hitting 730 in the official gmat ones and about 660 in other ones, so I am assuming that I am screwing big time when I write the test. I was wondering if anyone had a strategy to go from 620 to 690.

What courses would be the best ? I am debating between Magoosh and beat the gmat.
I have done Manhattan and my issue with them is they don’t give you enough opportunities to practice the questions, or atleast the difficult ones.

I know my timing needs to improve because in quant I always spend only about 40 seconds per question in the last area because of time shortage. Any tips or strategies in timing would be helpful too, I am now going with the intention to skip every 5th question.

Posted from my mobile device

Hello Nervouskid ...... for Quant

I would definitely go through the links below :
https://gmatclub.com/forum/ultimate-gma ... 44512.html
https://gmatclub.com/forum/all-you-need ... 40445.html

The GMAT CLUB math book is very helpful for Quant concepts.
_________________

Please let me know if I am going in wrong direction.
Thanks in appreciation.

EMPOWERgmat Instructor
Status: GMAT Assassin/Co-Founder
Affiliations: EMPOWERgmat
Joined: 19 Dec 2014
Posts: 13366
Location: United States (CA)
GMAT 1: 800 Q51 V49
GRE 1: Q170 V170

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25 Oct 2018, 19:13
1
Hi Nervouskid,

You're actually asking about a number of different subjects, so we should start with some of the broader concepts and work towards the specifics. To start, GMAC has publicly stated that the Official Score that you earn on Test Day is within +/- 30 points of actual ability. Your 2 Official Scores show that you essentially performed the same each time you took the Official GMAT (about 600 +/- a few points). You handle certain aspects of the Exam consistently well, but you also make certain consistent mistakes.

If you're consistently scoring a lot higher on your practice CATs, then the two likely "causes" of your differences in Scores involve either something that was unrealistic during practice or something that was surprising (or not accounted for) on Test Day. Before we discuss those details though, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on how you've been studying and your goals:

Studies:
1) How long have you studied?
2) What specific study materials have you used so far?
3) How have you scored on EACH of your CATs (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?

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

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Retired Moderator
Status: Preparing for GMAT
Joined: 25 Nov 2015
Posts: 987
Location: India
GPA: 3.64

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25 Oct 2018, 19:15
1
Nervouskid wrote:
Hi everyone,

I plan to rewrite my gmat for the third time where in the first time I got 590 (V34 Q36) and this time I got a 620 with Q37V38.

In the practice gmat tests, I am hitting 730 in the official gmat ones and about 660 in other ones, so I am assuming that I am screwing big time when I write the test. I was wondering if anyone had a strategy to go from 620 to 690.

What courses would be the best ? I am debating between Magoosh and beat the gmat.
I have done Manhattan and my issue with them is they don’t give you enough opportunities to practice the questions, or atleast the difficult ones.

I know my timing needs to improve because in quant I always spend only about 40 seconds per question in the last area because of time shortage. Any tips or strategies in timing would be helpful too, I am now going with the intention to skip every 5th question.

Posted from my mobile device

Hi
IMO, since you are scoring 660s in other mocks and 730 in the official ones you are close to your target. Analyze the tests thoroughly. Mark each question that you got wrong and the reason for it, whether it was due to a silly mistake or a concept you didn't know or it was a really tough question, etc. Then work towards it.
Regarding the courses, there are many courses having good reviews on the Gmatclub. Go through them and ensure to take a free trial before you enroll in any of them.
Here is a link for timing strategies:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/timing-strat ... 06035.html
_________________

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Target Test Prep Representative
Status: Founder & CEO
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Joined: 14 Oct 2015
Posts: 4557
Location: United States (CA)

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28 Oct 2018, 17:00
1
I’m glad you reached out, and I’m happy to help. First off, since you have taken the GMAT twice but improved by only one point in quant, clearly something is going on in your prep that must be addressed, right? Also, since your most recent quant score is 37, it’s clear that you are lacking some of the quant fundamentals necessary for a high score. Moving forward, follow an organized and linear study plan so that you can methodically improve your quant skills. Within each GMAT topic, begin with the foundations and progress toward more advanced concepts. Following such an approach will ensure that you fill gaps in your quant knowledge and leave no stone left unturned.

Regarding resources, in addition to seeking out the opinions of folks on this thread, you should check out the reviews here on GMAT Club for the best quant courses.

As for your timing issues, timing on the GMAT, as in life, improves as your knowledge, understanding, and skill improve. Timing does not improve simply by “trying to go faster.” In fact, when people try to force speed before they’re ready to go faster, they tend to end up making a significant number of preventable mistakes. Sometimes these mistakes badly erode people’s test scores. In addition, when people rush learning -- a common pathology of those trying to force speed -- they actually never end up developing the speed they seek. One of the great paradoxes of learning is that to develop speed, a student must slow down to ensure that he or she masters the material. Consider the following examples, which hopefully will bring you some more clarity:

Imagine your goal were to run a mile in four minutes, a difficult feat even for professional athletes. So, you get yourself a running coach. You show up on the field and ask, “Coach, how do I get faster?” The coach responds, “Well, just run faster.” So, you try your best to “run faster,” but you can't; you’re running a 12-minute mile. Out of breath, you come back to the coach and say, “Coach, I stink. How do I get faster?” Again, he says, “Just run faster.” So, you try again, but this time you fall and skin your knees. You keep trying to run faster. On the tenth attempt, you pull your hamstring, falling to the ground in pain. Over your next four months of recovery, you ponder why you couldn't run faster.

That situation would be insane, right? No qualified running coach would ever provide you with that advice, because the coach would understand that no one gets faster merely by trying to run faster. Instead, the coach would set you up on a linear, comprehensive plan to make you a BETTER runner. He may have you run progressively longer distances at relatively slow speeds. He may have you run up and down the stairs at the football stadium. He may have you run up and down hills. He even may have you engage in strength training, yoga, or Pilates to make you a more fit athlete. After all of that training, he finally would bring you back on the field and time you running the mile. At that point, he’d coach you on how to push yourself through the pain of sprinting and help you to understand what a four-minute-mile pace feels like. He now could help you with those things because you would be in the necessary shape to be receptive to them. So, you begin your run, and BOOM! You run a 6-minute mile. What happened? Well, you became a better runner. You became a fitter athlete. You became stronger. Although you’re not yet at the four-minute-mile mark, your training has yielded considerable improvements.

Now imagine your goal were to play a complicated song on the piano. The tempo at which a pianist plays greatly impacts the way a song sounds. To make songs sound the way they should, often a pianist must play at a fast pace. But your experience with the piano is limited. Can you imagine trying to play the complicated song at full speed right at the outset? Doing so wouldn't be possible. Instead, you first need to master many aspects of the piano -- without really trying to get faster. In fact, you need to proceed slowly at first, sometimes very slowly. As you master the piano, you find that you’re able to play your song at progressively faster tempos. With time and dedicated, proper practice, you’re able to recreate the sound you seek. If in the early days of practicing you had tried to force speed instead of mastering your technique, you never would have become truly accomplished at playing the song.

The process of getting faster at solving GMAT questions is quite analogous to the process of improving one’s running speed or ability to play the piano at the proper tempo! To get faster, you must get better. As you further develop your GMAT skills, you will get faster at a) recognizing what a problem is asking and b) executing the necessary steps to quickly attack the problem. Thus, you should not be so focused on timing when you are first working to improve your GMAT skills. Once you learn each individual topic, engage in focused practice, which will help improve your timing.

When you do focused practice, there are three levels of proficiency for each category:

At Level 1, you understand the logic of GMAT quant questions in a category and basically know how to answer them, but you may not get them right, or you at least don’t get them right consistently. This level of proficiency is a good start.

At Level 2, you consistently get questions in a quant category correct, but you are not fast, taking on average well over two minutes per question. This level of proficiency is even better. If you can get right answers consistently, you are well on your way to hitting your GMAT score goal.

At Level 3, you get questions in a category correct consistently, taking around two minutes per question (or sometimes less). When you are at this level of proficiency for a category of GMAT quant question, you are ready to see questions of that type on the test. Now it’s time to work on another question category.

To develop the third level of proficiency, you must allow yourself ample time for deliberate practice. When you first begin practicing, if you try to rush through questions, you’ll find it extremely difficult -- if not impossible -- to progress to Level 3. So, when you are practicing, do the questions untimed. Yes, you can be aware of how much time you are taking, but don’t focus on the time. Generally, you need to focus on finding the correct response to each question by mastering the material and learning to use higher-level thinking, rather than on answering questions in less than two minutes (or any other preset time constraint).

The key takeaway is that once your GMAT knowledge improves, better timing will follow. In fact, a great way to know how well you have a mastered a particular topic is to be cognizant of your reaction time when seeing a particular question. For example, consider the following simple question with which many students who are beginning their prep struggle:

14! is equal to which of the following?

(A) 87,178,291,200
(B) 88,180,293,207
(C) 89,181,294,209
(D) 90,000,000,003
(E) 91,114,114,114

Upon seeing this question, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Grabbing a calculator to add up the values in the expression? Or are you able to quickly recognize that using the “5 x 2 pair rule” will allow you to efficiently attack the problem? (See the solution below.)

Solution:

14! = 14 × 13 × 12 × 11 × 10 × 9 × 8 × 7 × 6 × 5 × 4 × 3 × 2 × 1.

Notice that there is at least one (5 × 2) pair contained in the product of these numbers. It follows that the units digit must be a zero. The only number with zero as the units digit is 87,178,291,200.

Although this is just one example of many, you see that you must have many tools in your toolbox to efficiently attack each GMAT quant question that comes your way. As you gain these skills, you will get faster.

Lastly, you may find the following articles helpful: How to score a 700+ on the GMAT and How to get faster at solving GMAT questions.

Feel free to reach out with further questions.

Good luck!
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Advice and tips for a 620 aiming for 690 &nbs [#permalink] 28 Oct 2018, 17:00
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# Advice and tips for a 620 aiming for 690

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