If you find yourself constantly scoring 600 on Kaplan
yet acing GMATPrep and OG and can't score over 600 on real GMAT, then this thread is for you!!! The problem is not that you don't have ability... the problem, in my view, is that you lack strategy!!
My score went from 600 to 720 (M: 49; V: 38) in 3 months. According to GMAC, less than 5% of retake is able to improve the score by more than 120. Below are the things that I have done to prepare.
1. Setup study schedule for 250 hours! My schedule was 2 hours a day on Tue-Fri and 6 hours a day on Sat and Sun.
2. Sign up Kaplan
online course with 8 Cat! It's worth it!
more on Kaplan... some of their math questions (especially their questions on probability) are way too hard, but if you can master those, nothing the real GMAT throw at you can throw you off. Also, the online material offers a lot of good strategy for each question type. Master those!
Their overall verbal section is even harder. A lot of their critical reasoning does not even make any sense and the passages that they selected have way too many difficult vocabury that you won't see in the real test. However, one useful way to use their verbal sections is reading their answer explanations. In doing so, you will find many useful tips that can help you on your verbal strategy.
3. Study your mistakes! In my preparation before I took my first exam, I did not study any of my mistakes. If you are able to compile a book of all the problems that you have made mistake on, you will find many helpful tips and recognize your weakness!
4. I also signed up for Manhattan GMAT
course! VERY VERY helpful! One of the best in the industry. The strategy they teach can really help you out!
5. Monitor your confidence. Visit this site often for inspiration and have a coach who helps you think positive! Take GMATPrep and Kaplan
Cat on weekends to see how you are doing... and right before you take your test, don't take any CAT, but do try tons of math and verbal questions from OG (repeat if you have to) to boost your confidence even further!
6. On test day and days leading up to it, keep repeating this phrase in your head: "Be Sharp! Be Focus! Be Relaxed!"
You have to learn on your own on how to approach a lot of specific question type... that's where your study comes in. Take lots of notes!
How do you know if you are ready to take the exam?
-If you can complete OG (it doesn't matter if you repeat) the entire book with 90% accuracy in all sections and can do so spending, on average, 1.5 minutes on PS, 1 minute on DS, 1 minute on SC, 1.2 minute on RC, and 1.8 minute on CR...
-if you can score over 700 consistently on Kaplan
GMAT and GMATPrep (even after retakes)...
The real GMAT is hard. It doesn't test IQ, but it tests your ability to think. There will be problems that you have never seen before, but as long as you have good strategy for every question type, then you should be fine! Hard work does pay off! Good luck to you all!
And thank you, GMAT Club!!!