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Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result

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Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 28 Apr 2018, 04:15
Hi Guys, this is my first post on GMAT Club & i was expecting to write a very positive & overwhelming post regarding my results since my expectations were very high & my target score was 630.

Overview of my preparation:

I am working in a leading telecom company in Sales & Distribution department & having 7 years of experience so pursuing an MBA was an absolute requirement of my job. So in December 2017 i decided to prepare myself for GMAT exam but i knew i am not one of a guy who will just open a book and start practicing questions & start understanding the concepts. Since English is not my native language so Verbal wasn't a cup of cake for me and as far as Quant is concerned, i was good at it. Anyways as per behest of one of my senior colleague, i signed up for a premium account of Magoosh and started following 3 months study plan. Things were going perfectly fine and smooth. In March 2018 i was almost done with 80% of my GMAT prep so i planned to give a Mock test so that i shall have a clear picture where i stand and i ended up taking 450 in my 1st mock exam which was very demotivating after giving almost 2 and half a month of rigorous time to GMAT. After 2 weeks i was done with my Magoosh plan and finished all PS & DS questions from OG and Magoosh as well. so i was like, let me give another mock exam and i ended up taking 560 this time. it was a good improvement and i was quite confident that before my actual gmat exam i will be able to touch my target score i.e. 630. My exam date was approaching near and i was quite confident since my prep was pretty well but the worse part was that i had only a single attempt of GMAT to apply for the business school i was planning to pursue an MBA since 30th of April 2018 was a deadline to submit the GMAT scores and my exam was exam was on 26th of April 2018. from 16th April till 24th April, i kept practicing RC, CR, SC, PS & DS from Magoosh and OG 2013 as well & i was so optimistic since things were going in a flow & i was almost done re-practicing all the questions from OG and Magoosh till 24th April. On 25th April i kept myself relax, slept pretty well all day and hungout with my friends & family and slept on time. I dont know but i was a bit stressed out since it was my first actual GMAT exam and that feeling was terrifying me but somehow i kept myself motivated. When the test started, i was bombarded with hell of a Word problem questions and i was like WTH in the world is happening. Why am i getting 70% of the questions from word problems. Likewise my confidence level dwindled & i was feeling like a hopeless dude finding answers in the air & i was broken & ended up with 300 scores :( it was a worse day of my life and i was broke but i am still motivated and i wont give up.

Need your expert advice on how to catch up with retaking the GMAT exam and what approach should i use this time since i have an ample time for preparation now ( almost an year) and this time i want to make sure to touch a crazy score of 650. I am planning to hire a tutor for my verbal part as well since English isnt my native language.

Please advice guys!!!
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 28 Apr 2018, 11:50
Hi Imtisal,

I'm sorry to hear that Test Day didn't go as well as planned. When these types of score drops occur, the two likely "causes" involve either something that was unrealistic during practice or something that was surprising (or not accounted for) on Test Day. If you can answer a few questions, then we should be able to figure this out:

When you took your CATs:
1) Did you take the ENTIRE CAT each time (including the Essay and IR sections)?
2) Did you take them at home?
3) Did you take them at the same time of day as when you plan to take your Official GMAT?
4) Did you ever do ANYTHING during your CATs that you couldn't do on Test Day (pause the CAT, skip sections, take longer breaks, etc.)?
5) Did you ever take a CAT more than once? Had you seen any of the questions BEFORE (re: on a prior CAT, in an online forum or in a practice set)?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 29 Apr 2018, 15:28
imtisalsiddiqui wrote:
Hi Guys, this is my first post on GMAT Club & i was expecting to write a very positive & overwhelming post regarding my results since my expectations were very high & my target score was 630.

Overview of my preparation:

I am working in a leading telecom company in Sales & Distribution department & having 7 years of experience so pursuing an MBA was an absolute requirement of my job. So in December 2017 i decided to prepare myself for GMAT exam but i knew i am not one of a guy who will just open a book and start practicing questions & start understanding the concepts. Since English is not my native language so Verbal wasn't a cup of cake for me and as far as Quant is concerned, i was good at it. Anyways as per behest of one of my senior colleague, i signed up for a premium account of Magoosh and started following 3 months study plan. Things were going perfectly fine and smooth. In March 2018 i was almost done with 80% of my GMAT prep so i planned to give a Mock test so that i shall have a clear picture where i stand and i ended up taking 450 in my 1st mock exam which was very demotivating after giving almost 2 and half a month of rigorous time to GMAT. After 2 weeks i was done with my Magoosh plan and finished all PS & DS questions from OG and Magoosh as well. so i was like, let me give another mock exam and i ended up taking 560 this time. it was a good improvement and i was quite confident that before my actual gmat exam i will be able to touch my target score i.e. 630. My exam date was approaching near and i was quite confident since my prep was pretty well but the worse part was that i had only a single attempt of GMAT to apply for the business school i was planning to pursue an MBA since 30th of April 2018 was a deadline to submit the GMAT scores and my exam was exam was on 26th of April 2018. from 16th April till 24th April, i kept practicing RC, CR, SC, PS & DS from Magoosh and OG 2013 as well & i was so optimistic since things were going in a flow & i was almost done re-practicing all the questions from OG and Magoosh till 24th April. On 25th April i kept myself relax, slept pretty well all day and hungout with my friends & family and slept on time. I dont know but i was a bit stressed out since it was my first actual GMAT exam and that feeling was terrifying me but somehow i kept myself motivated. When the test started, i was bombarded with hell of a Word problem questions and i was like WTH in the world is happening. Why am i getting 70% of the questions from word problems. Likewise my confidence level dwindled & i was feeling like a hopeless dude finding answers in the air & i was broken & ended up with 300 scores :( it was a worse day of my life and i was broke but i am still motivated and i wont give up.

Need your expert advice on how to catch up with retaking the GMAT exam and what approach should i use this time since i have an ample time for preparation now ( almost an year) and this time i want to make sure to touch a crazy score of 650. I am planning to hire a tutor for my verbal part as well since English isnt my native language.

Please advice guys!!!


Hi imtisalsiddiqui,

I'm sorry to hear about your struggles here! It sounds like you've put in a lot of work and made some serious progress, so let's try and figure out what might have gone wrong.

First, I recommend reading the following article about studying for a retake. You'll want to do things differently to increase your score:


Next, here are some specific suggestions for your practice and preparation. Click on the links to read articles about each topic:


You should also definitely spend some time going back through and reviewing your old practice questions. Make sure to keep an error log throughout, and review it frequently. I want to emphasize that the quality of your studies is much more important than the quantity. Learning from mistakes is key. If it were possible to never make the same mistake twice, you would become an absolute master of the test in a very, very short time. So be sure that you go through the explanation, study very carefully the related concepts, research methods or material you're not comfortable with but are mentioned in the solution, and really analyze the questions.

Make it your goal to understand inside-out every single practice question you do, so that if you see that same question in the future, you know that you will nail it. In fact, if you review a question one day, it's good to go back to it four to five days later to see if you still understand it. Always be checking how much you have retained or how much you can actually remember from what you think you understand. Until you can recall something at any time, without any hints or warm-up, immediately and with complete clarity--until you can recall it like that--you don't really understand it as deeply as you need to. The goal in learning is NOT efficiency but rather thoroughness.

I'd also recommend reading through Mike's list of the habits of excellence, and try to incorporate those as much as possible in your practice!

Also, read these articles about overcoming test anxiety:


Finally, it sounds like you would benefit from taking more full-length, timed practice tests. If you've already taken the GMATprep tests and finished all the Magoosh questions, then I'd recommend the practice tests from Manhattan.

I hope some of this helps! :-)
-Carolyn
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 29 Apr 2018, 22:27
Hi Rich,

When you took your CATs:
1) Did you take the ENTIRE CAT each time (including the Essay and IR sections) (Yes i took entire mock test)
2) Did you take them at home? (Yes at home)
3) Did you take them at the same time of day as when you plan to take your Official GMAT? (No took it 3 days before my actual gmat exam)
4) Did you ever do ANYTHING during your CATs that you couldn't do on Test Day (pause the CAT, skip sections, take longer breaks, etc.)? (haven't paused the CAT infact i kept eating and smoking during my CAT)
5) Did you ever take a CAT more than once? Had you seen any of the questions BEFORE (re: on a prior CAT, in an online forum or in a practice set)? ( yes sometimes questions were repeating)
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 30 Apr 2018, 19:30
Hi Imtisal,

From your prior post, there were some 'red flags' in terms of how you took your CATs. Before we discuss those issues, I have a few additional questions about the lead-up to Test Day and Test Day itself:

1) What did you do in the 3 days before your GMAT?
2) How did you sleep the night before your Test?
3) How long was the ride to the Test Center from your home?
4) Were there any distractions at the facility or during the Test?
5) What did you do during the two 8-minute breaks?
6) Did you finish any sections early?
7) Did you have to rush to finish any sections (and guess on questions just to finish on time)?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

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www.empowergmat.com/

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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 30 Apr 2018, 23:07
imtisalsiddiqui wrote:
Hi Guys, this is my first post on GMAT Club & i was expecting to write a very positive & overwhelming post regarding my results since my expectations were very high & my target score was 630.

Overview of my preparation:

I am working in a leading telecom company in Sales & Distribution department & having 7 years of experience so pursuing an MBA was an absolute requirement of my job. So in December 2017 i decided to prepare myself for GMAT exam but i knew i am not one of a guy who will just open a book and start practicing questions & start understanding the concepts. Since English is not my native language so Verbal wasn't a cup of cake for me and as far as Quant is concerned, i was good at it. Anyways as per behest of one of my senior colleague, i signed up for a premium account of Magoosh and started following 3 months study plan. Things were going perfectly fine and smooth. In March 2018 i was almost done with 80% of my GMAT prep so i planned to give a Mock test so that i shall have a clear picture where i stand and i ended up taking 450 in my 1st mock exam which was very demotivating after giving almost 2 and half a month of rigorous time to GMAT. After 2 weeks i was done with my Magoosh plan and finished all PS & DS questions from OG and Magoosh as well. so i was like, let me give another mock exam and i ended up taking 560 this time. it was a good improvement and i was quite confident that before my actual gmat exam i will be able to touch my target score i.e. 630. My exam date was approaching near and i was quite confident since my prep was pretty well but the worse part was that i had only a single attempt of GMAT to apply for the business school i was planning to pursue an MBA since 30th of April 2018 was a deadline to submit the GMAT scores and my exam was exam was on 26th of April 2018. from 16th April till 24th April, i kept practicing RC, CR, SC, PS & DS from Magoosh and OG 2013 as well & i was so optimistic since things were going in a flow & i was almost done re-practicing all the questions from OG and Magoosh till 24th April. On 25th April i kept myself relax, slept pretty well all day and hungout with my friends & family and slept on time. I dont know but i was a bit stressed out since it was my first actual GMAT exam and that feeling was terrifying me but somehow i kept myself motivated. When the test started, i was bombarded with hell of a Word problem questions and i was like WTH in the world is happening. Why am i getting 70% of the questions from word problems. Likewise my confidence level dwindled & i was feeling like a hopeless dude finding answers in the air & i was broken & ended up with 300 scores :( it was a worse day of my life and i was broke but i am still motivated and i wont give up.

Need your expert advice on how to catch up with retaking the GMAT exam and what approach should i use this time since i have an ample time for preparation now ( almost an year) and this time i want to make sure to touch a crazy score of 650. I am planning to hire a tutor for my verbal part as well since English isnt my native language.

Please advice guys!!!



Hi ,
I'm no GMAT Expert but as am on a prep mode too , I could feel the lower side that you are facing . Nonetheless , could you mention how many mocks have you taken including GMAT Prep mocks and what are your scores ? And what are the resources you have been using ?
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 01 May 2018, 01:01
Hi Rich,

1) What did you do in the 3 days before your GMAT? ( In last week, i kept practicing all the questions of Quant and Verbal from OG & Magoosh)
2) How did you sleep the night before your Test? ( Slept around 12:30 A.M & wokeup at 9:30 AM. had a sound sleep)
3) How long was the ride to the Test Center from your home? ( it was hardly 20 minutes from my home)
4) Were there any distractions at the facility or during the Test? ( No distractions at all)
5) What did you do during the two 8-minute breaks? ( I had my meal i.e. Juice and sandwich, walked a little bit, streched myself)
6) Did you finish any sections early? ( didn't finish any section early)
7) Did you have to rush to finish any sections (and guess on questions just to finish on time)? ( Yes for verbal, my mind got blanked & i was stressed out & i couldnt grasp the passage neither critical reasong section)
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 01 May 2018, 01:02
Hi Loserunderachiever, i have been giving mocks from GMAT CLUB, Kaplan, Manhaten and scores were 380 in first mock, 420 in 2nd, 560 in 3rd mock and average was around 480 to 500.
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 01 May 2018, 12:43
Hi Imtisal,

Test Day is a rather specific 'event' - the details are specific and they matter, so you have to train as best as you can for all of them. The more realistic you can make your CATs, the more likely the score results are to be accurate. The more you deviate, the more "inflated" your practice scores can become - and that's what happened here. By taking the CATs at home, smoking/eating during your CATs, seeing 'repeat' questions etc., you weren't properly training for the FULL GMAT 'experience.'

Test Day involves a variety of really specific steps and parameters (including steps before the Test even begins - such as leaving your home, traveling, etc.). Every factor matters, including the psychological ones. When you sit down on Test Day, you KNOW that you're going to be in the Computer Lab for about 3.5 hours - and you're going to be taking the Exam under really specific conditions. Based on how you were taking your CATs, you were clearly not taking your CATs in a realistic way, so you were not properly prepared for Test Day.

In addition, the process of taking (and reviewing) a CAT requires a significant amount of energy and effort - and takes time to 'recover' from. This is one of the reasons why you typically shouldn't take more than 1 CAT per week - and your last CAT should be taken about 1 week before Test Day. By taking a CAT just a few days before your Official GMAT, there's a reasonable chance that you experienced some 'burn out' on Test Day. Even if you didn't "feel" tired, what you describe about how you felt on Test Day - and the resulting Score - proves that you were not at your best.

Thankfully, these are relatively easy issues to fix - now that you've taken the Official GMAT, you know the EXACT details of what happens on Test Day, so you can better train to mimic those details when you take CATs in the future. That having been said, raising a 300 to a 650+ will likely require at least another 3 months of consistent, guided study - and you'll have to make significant improvements to how you handle BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections.

1) When are you planning to retake the GMAT?
2) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
3) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 01 May 2018, 21:19
Hi Rich, i hope i will be able to hit my target scores this time because i am not letting it go like that. However i am planning to take a month break since i am still in a trauma of my exam failure & surely need a break.

1) When are you planning to retake the GMAT? ( I am planning to take GMAT in end of this year. until and unless i am not fully prepared, i am not going to register myself this time)
2) When are you planning to apply to Business School? ( Applying next year since the school for which i had to apply, its deadline is 4th of May 2018 & since my scores are hideous , cant apply this year)
3) What Schools are you planning to apply to? ( Lahore University of Management Sciences, Pakistan, Imperial College London,University of Toronto)
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 02 May 2018, 10:36
Hi Imtisal,

I think that you have the right perspective about this whole process, and you've given yourself plenty of time to continue your studies - which is good. Since you have so much time, you can certainly proceed however you like with your studies. That having been said, I think that you probably would benefit from a more structured, guided Study Plan - so that you can approach this next phase of your studies in more efficient fashion.

1) Going forward, how many hours do you think you can consistently study each week?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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760+: Learn What GMAT Assassins Do to Score at the Highest Levels
Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

Rich Cohen

Co-Founder & GMAT Assassin

Special Offer: Save $75 + GMAT Club Tests Free
  Official GMAT Exam Packs + 70 Pt. Improvement Guarantee
www.empowergmat.com/

***********************Select EMPOWERgmat Courses now include ALL 6 Official GMAC CATs!***********************

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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 02 May 2018, 20:53
Hi Rich, since i am working in a telecom industry in sales & distribution department & all of above i am a married guy so giving time to my family and kids have always been my TOP Priority, in these circumstances, i can manage studying around 2-3 hours on each week day & 6 hours on each weekend (Saturday & Sunday) . Thats what my routine was earlier before attempting GMAT exam.
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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 03 May 2018, 19:14
Hi Imtisal,

I think that your plan to take some time 'off' from your studies would be a good idea. Once you are ready to restart your studies, I suggest that you take a new practice CAT (one with questions that you have NOT seen before) and take it in a realistic fashion (take the FULL CAT - with the Essay and IR sections, take it away from your home, at the same time of day as when you'll take the Official GMAT, etc.). Once you have that score, you should report back here and we can discuss how best to proceed.

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
_________________

760+: Learn What GMAT Assassins Do to Score at the Highest Levels
Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

Rich Cohen

Co-Founder & GMAT Assassin

Special Offer: Save $75 + GMAT Club Tests Free
  Official GMAT Exam Packs + 70 Pt. Improvement Guarantee
www.empowergmat.com/

***********************Select EMPOWERgmat Courses now include ALL 6 Official GMAC CATs!***********************

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Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result [#permalink]

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New post 03 May 2018, 22:40
Alright thank you Rich. Will get back to you once i get back to my GMAT routine!
Re: Devasted & broken from my Actual GMAT result   [#permalink] 03 May 2018, 22:40
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