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# First attempt 580

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Intern
Joined: 30 Jun 2018
Posts: 16

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13 Dec 2018, 07:47
Hi there, I wanted to share my experience for my first GMAT exam. I sat on for the test this past Monday and got a score of 580. I was disappointed to say the least as I had a VERY low standard of just breaking 600. Long story short, I have been going through a lot of stuff at work/personal and I know I have a great story for admission. I just wanted to get into the 80% range of the top schools.

Q39, V31, IR5

Two quick takeaways for you guys:

1. I was told by Manhattan Prep you are allowed to set up your yellow pad during the "introductory" sections. When I went into my exam, I tried to triple confirm with the guy who signed me in and read me the "rules" AND the actual proctor. Both of them gave fuzzy answers, but ultimately said, "you probably shouldn't write anything on your pad until you see the first question." This CLEARLY messed me up with my timing strategy and I was very stressed out. I messed up timing and knew I was behind and then sped through and ended my Quant section with 6 more minutes!!!!!

I debated these past 3 days on whether I should call MBA.com and see if they could either give me an official statement regarding pad usage, and if my proctor and test center was WRONG if they could refund me my exam fee, but let me keep my score. I originally figured I would just let it slide and know that this was my 1st time and I needed to just get the full effect of sitting down for the exam.

This morning I decided to call to at least get an answer, but they said their systems were down and for me to call back in an hour. HA!

2. When I was checking back after my first break, the hand scanner was having issues (it's hard to read my veins) and I lost a precious 30 seconds starting my Quant section. To everyone, 8 MINUTES FLY BY. Run to the bathroom, run to the locker, eat quickly, and check in before you even think 6 minutes have passed.

Prep: I took the 12 week Manhattan Prep course back in the summer. Unfortunately, I don't think I gained as much from the class as I had hoped. I self-studied from after the class was done in September through now. The highest practice exam I received was a 640 from Kaplan, but I believe they have some score inflation.

Based on my conclusion that I can't self-study, I decided to try out private tutoring with Manhattan Prep. (I guess, call me stupid for going back to the same institution that I was displeased from in the beginning).

Would appreciate any words of wisdom or helpful tips for crunch time. I'm scheduled to take the exam in 2 weeks!

Apologies if this isn't an excellent summary, but I did want to share my first 2 takeaways. If you have the money, I would absolutely sit for an exam and just cancel the score so you get the full experience and know what you're in for!
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13 Dec 2018, 15:31

I'm sorry to hear that Test Day did not go as well as hoped. For practical purposes, if you're approaching the Exam in a consistent, organized fashion, then you won't need to "set up" your pad for any of the sections. In addition, finishing any section 6 minutes early is usually NOT a good sign - it implies that you likely rushed through certain prompts and made some little mistakes which cost you points. Before I can offer you the specific advice that you’re looking for, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on how you've been studying and your goals:

1) How have you scored on EACH of your CATs (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?
2) What is your goal score?
3) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
4) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

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16 Dec 2018, 18:52

Based on the issues you experienced on test day, it seems that under more “normal” test-taking conditions, you probably can hit your 600 score goal. That being said, before providing specific advice, I’d like to learn more about your situation with the GMAT. Once you respond to the questions already asked, I can provide some detailed advice.
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Re: First attempt 580 &nbs [#permalink] 16 Dec 2018, 18:52
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# First attempt 580

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