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GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications

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GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Dec 2018, 14:12
Hi Guys,

I wrote GMAT 12 days back and scored 710 (Q49, V37, IR6, AWA6). With Round 2 deadlines looming, I am in a fix whether to focus on applications or retake the exam towards Dec end.
My profile: 32 yr old Indian, degree in computer science and MBA from a premier Indian B-School (non-IIMs). Progressive work ex of 6.5 years in 2 Fortune 500 cos.(Energy & Pharmaceuticals), been associated with a high-growth e-commerce startup and now starting an entrepreneurial journey of my own. Functional expertise in sales, supply chain, operations, project management, Business IT and Analytics.
My target schools are: Booth, Kellogg(1 yr), Ross, Darden, Cornell(1 yr), LBS, MIT Sloan.

I know barring Cornell and LBS, for all other schools my GMAT score will prove them to be a stretch but nonetheless, due to paucity of time, I have started writing down my applications and have also been looking simultaneously at GMAT to fix few areas where I have been lacking. Managing both of the things together is becoming really hard.
My mock scores before I took GMAT(all were taken ~30 days before the real exam):
GMAT Prep Exam#1- 730 (Taken online)
GMAT Prep Exam#3- 730
GMAT Prep Exam#4- 730
GMAT Prep Exam#5- 750 (1 week before GMAT)
GMAT Prep Exam#6- 730 (4 days before GMAT)

Exam#1 was taken online in the new format and all other exams were taken on the software in the older format as I had purchased it while preparing for the exam last year. The scores might not be inflated because there was a gap of minimum 12 months between repeating any mock, hence, I likely would have forgotten what all I marked last time.

Additional info: 5 days before the exam I contracted influenza :( and was under heavy doses of life-saving drugs (read:narcotics) to cure it. More than the health, it impacted the morale but I still decide to take the Exam#6. While I scored lower than Exam#5, I felt like all is not lost and hence, would still be able to give it a shot. Guess it was worth 710 only!

Looking forward to your suggestions. Any inputs will be extremely helpful in deciding the next course of action.
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Re: GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Dec 2018, 14:49
Hi AndyDufresne,

First off, a 710/Q49 is an outstanding score (it's right around the 90th percentile overall), so you can comfortably apply to any Business Schools that interest you. As such, a retest is probably not necessary. You're ultimately asking Admissions questions though, so you would likely find it beneficial to speak with an Admissions Expert about your overall profile. There's a Forum full of those Experts here:

https://gmatclub.com/forum/ask-admissio ... tants-124/

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Re: GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Dec 2018, 20:23
AndyDufresne wrote:
I wrote GMAT 12 days back and scored 710 (Q49, V37, IR6, AWA6). With Round 2 deadlines looming, I am in a fix whether to focus on applications or retake the exam towards Dec end.
That's a really good score.

I think that working on your applications is more important right now than a possible increase in your GMAT score. But what do you think? Will taking the GMAT again mean that you won't be able to put a good application together?
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Re: GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Dec 2018, 07:24
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi AndyDufresne,

First off, a 710/Q49 is an outstanding score (it's right around the 90th percentile overall), so you can comfortably apply to any Business Schools that interest you. As such, a retest is probably not necessary. You're ultimately asking Admissions questions though, so you would likely find it beneficial to speak with an Admissions Expert about your overall profile. There's a Forum full of those Experts here:

https://gmatclub.com/forum/ask-admissio ... tants-124/

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


Thanks Rich for an amazingly fast response, motivation and the direction....will check for my queries with the admissions experts.
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Re: GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Dec 2018, 07:33
AjiteshArun wrote:
AndyDufresne wrote:
I wrote GMAT 12 days back and scored 710 (Q49, V37, IR6, AWA6). With Round 2 deadlines looming, I am in a fix whether to focus on applications or retake the exam towards Dec end.
That's a really good score.

I think that working on your applications is more important right now than a possible increase in your GMAT score. But what do you think? Will taking the GMAT again mean that you won't be able to put a good application together?


Thanks Ajitesh for your response. I am not a great multitasker and will be trading off application research and writing time with preparing for GMAT and hence, have been apprehensive as you mentioned it BUT your query also got me thinking if its going to be so difficult!
I presume if I remain methodical, I would still be able to complete almost 8 applications on time PLUS work on my weak topics for GMAT retake. I’m worried about a case in which I might put together a great application but the GMAT score becomes a deal breaker even impacting the interview shortlisting part of the process. GMAT averages for Indian applicant pool hovers way above the median scores and hence such a dilemma.
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Re: GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Dec 2018, 13:22
This is an interesting question. Here's my read on the pros and cons.

Why you shouldn't retake:
- 710 is a very strong score; remember that the average for your schools is just an average. Every school admits people with 'below average' scores, and you're not far off from the average for even top 10 schools.
- Studying for the GMAT costs time, money, and energy that you could probably use elsewhere.
- Once you're above the 700 level, the average improvement is extremely small (under 10 points on average for people who retake after getting a 700+.)

Why you should retake:
- It's possible that you scored well below your 'actual level' on test day. Your practice test scores make me think that might be the case, and so does the fact that you were sick and on medication. If you scored at your actual ability level, you'd need to study and increase your ability level in order to get a higher score the second time. But if your score was 'deflated,' it's possible that you could score much higher just by going in to the test healthy and alert.

If it were me, I think I'd do a light review of the most important topics, then retake the test fairly soon, making sure to go into it healthy, well-rested, and alert. That assumes that the money and time spent taking the test aren't issues! I wouldn't spend a ton of time studying before retaking, though; I'd only do that if I'd scored much lower than 710.
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Re: GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Dec 2018, 19:15
AndyDufresne wrote:
Thanks Ajitesh for your response. I am not a great multitasker and will be trading off application research and writing time with preparing for GMAT and hence, have been apprehensive as you mentioned it BUT your query also got me thinking if its going to be so difficult!
I presume if I remain methodical, I would still be able to complete almost 8 applications on time PLUS work on my weak topics for GMAT retake. I’m worried about a case in which I might put together a great application but the GMAT score becomes a deal breaker even impacting the interview shortlisting part of the process. GMAT averages for Indian applicant pool hovers way above the median scores and hence such a dilemma.
Have you already started working on your applications? Timelines have a habit of... stretching :)

You seem to have scored at the lower end of the range your official practice test scores indicated, so there is a very real chance that your GMAT score could go up if you take the exam again. But it is still just a chance. Keep the possibility of a score drop and the possibility of only a minor increase in mind before you decide to go ahead.

As for what happens to Indian applicants, here are a few things I'd like you to consider:

1. A higher GMAT score generally helps, but how much that higher score helps is not always clear (especially if getting that amazing GMAT score means compromising something else).
2. There are plenty of people, including those who worked with admissions consultants, with really bad applications who end up blaming their GMAT scores. It's the easiest thing to do.
3. A lot of consultants in India turn away people with anything less than 730. This doesn't mean that 730 is some sort of cut-off for Indian candidates.

I see that you are not new here, so I'm quite sure that there's nothing on this thread that you are completely unaware of. If you feel you can manage both a retake and your applications, go ahead (I would, if I were you). The important thing is to commit: dial down your GMAT prep and put more time and effort into your applications.
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Re: GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Dec 2018, 19:17
Hi AndyDufresne,

I agree that first you should speak to some of the admissions consultants here on GMAT Club to get a opinion from someone qualified. If you determine that you need to retake the GMAT, please reach back out, and I’d be happy to provide some further advice.

Good luck!
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Re: GMAT-710: In a fix to retake or focus on Round 2 applications &nbs [#permalink] 04 Dec 2018, 19:17
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