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# GMAT 720 (Q:46, V:45) - What do I do now?

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Intern
Joined: 05 Oct 2006
Posts: 43
GMAT 720 (Q:46, V:45) - What do I do now? [#permalink]

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05 Oct 2006, 06:48
Hi all, my friend just told me about this site and boy did I wish I had this resource before going thru the whole ordeal. Figured I would register and partake in this great community you all have created.

Brief history: I'm still looking at what schools I want to attend, I don't intend on applying for the ultra-elite schools but I would like to apply to NYU and Columbia (as I currently reside in NYC). I majored in BA, concentration in Finance with a history minor at a top 20 BA program, graduating in 2003, UG GPA was average at best (3.1), have been working in a big hedge fund in an operations and risk control role for 2 yrs and 1 yr in a bank in a similar function.

I just took the GMAT yesterday for the first time and scored a 720. My verbal score was a 45, putting me in the 97%. However my math score was a 46 putting me in the 78%. Now I know MBA programs heavily favor Quant scores relative to Verbal. My verbal scores are pretty static, I had taken a Kaplan Prep course and done all the practice CATs - all the verbal scores I got were always in the lower-middle to upper-middle 40 raw score range.

Should I be re-taking the GMAT in hopes of attaining a more balanced score? Any help would be appreciated. Cheers!
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Senior Manager
Joined: 15 Jul 2006
Posts: 381

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05 Oct 2006, 07:18
Hi obeny81, you got a great score - congrats!
How were your Q scores before taking the test? If they were also pretty static than I would not bother retaking the test because any improvement would be very marginal. Meaning you'd spend months and months studying only to better your performance minimaly. In my opinion (which is NOT professional), this would not be worth your time. You'd be better off spending it on your application essays, which are numerous and very time consuming. Then you'd also be done and able to apply earlier than if you retake the test. I think that solid essays and applying early would increase your chances of getting in more so than a slight change in GMAT Q score. Especially considering that 720 is an excelent score!

Also consider your performance in quantitative undergrad. courses. If it was decent than there is another argument against taking GMATS again.

hope this helps and good luck!
Intern
Joined: 05 Oct 2006
Posts: 43

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05 Oct 2006, 07:39
the highest Q raw score i ever got was a 48 on my practice CATs...

if only the % was a 80%, not a 78%, I wouldn't even be thinking about this.
Intern
Joined: 21 Mar 2006
Posts: 21
Re: GMAT 720 (Q:46, V:45) - What do I do now? [#permalink]

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05 Oct 2006, 08:12
obeny81 wrote:
Hi all, my friend just told me about this site and boy did I wish I had this resource before going thru the whole ordeal. Figured I would register and partake in this great community you all have created.

Brief history: I'm still looking at what schools I want to attend, I don't intend on applying for the ultra-elite schools but I would like to apply to NYU and Columbia (as I currently reside in NYC). I majored in BA, concentration in Finance with a history minor at a top 20 BA program, graduating in 2003, UG GPA was average at best (3.1), have been working in a big hedge fund in an operations and risk control role for 2 yrs and 1 yr in a bank in a similar function.

I just took the GMAT yesterday for the first time and scored a 720. My verbal score was a 45, putting me in the 97%. However my math score was a 46 putting me in the 78%. Now I know MBA programs heavily favor Quant scores relative to Verbal. My verbal scores are pretty static, I had taken a Kaplan Prep course and done all the practice CATs - all the verbal scores I got were always in the lower-middle to upper-middle 40 raw score range.

Should I be re-taking the GMAT in hopes of attaining a more balanced score? Any help would be appreciated. Cheers!

Hi there

man- there is an high calibre person on this forum (and active in the same time )- pelihu

read all his posts- and you will have answers to all your questions (and even more) mentioned above!

cheers
SVP
Joined: 31 Jul 2006
Posts: 2302
Schools: Darden

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05 Oct 2006, 10:56
GV, thanks for the compliment.

I wanted to point out that Columbia is in fact among the ultra-elites. In fact, given recent admit rates and yields, I argued in a prior post that Columbia is now as difficult to get into as Wharton. Admit rates at Wharton over the last four years have been 13%, 16%, 16% & 21%; yields were 74%, 70%, 68% & 69%. Admit rates at Columbia over the last four have been 11%, 12%, 15%, 15% and yields 72%, 76%, 71% & 76%, besting Wharton in both areas virtually every year. Now, there are probably differences in quality of applications, but suffice to say Columbia is hard to get in to. Columiba is also solidy with the ultra-elites in terms of reputation, job prospects, etc.

NYU, on the other hand, is among the next grouping of schools. Just a personal annecdote, I spoke with an NYU representative at the MBA fair in San Francisco a few days ago. I asked her about the prospects of competing for a job on the west coast and spcifically after graduation from NYU and she kind of got a funny look on her face. NYU clearly has much influence in New York City (which should work fine for you) but for those planning to work elsewhere, it would be advisable to do your research.

Now regarding your scores, I think you are correct that many of the top schools (and especially Columbia and NYU) look closely at the Q portion. That said, your 46/78% is not far off from the mythical 80% mark that many schools prefer. However, because your GPA is towards the bottom end of the 80% range at these schools, and your GMAT is average to slightly above, you probably need to at least consider re-taking. As it stands, unless you can really distinguish yourself elsewhere in your application, you are a long shot at Columbia and probably no better than an average applicant at NYU. 720 is a very good score, but given the quantitative bents of these two schools, I think a few more points could help. If you think you can impove by 30 points overall, then your GMAT could effectively balance out your lower than average GPA.
Intern
Joined: 21 Mar 2006
Posts: 21

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05 Oct 2006, 11:06
pelihu wrote:
GV, thanks for the compliment.

I wanted to point out that Columbia is in fact among the ultra-elites. In fact, given recent admit rates and yields, I argued in a prior post that Columbia is now as difficult to get into as Wharton. Admit rates at Wharton over the last four years have been 13%, 16%, 16% & 21%; yields were 74%, 70%, 68% & 69%. Admit rates at Columbia over the last four have been 11%, 12%, 15%, 15% and yields 72%, 76%, 71% & 76%, besting Wharton in both areas virtually every year. Now, there are probably differences in quality of applications, but suffice to say Columbia is hard to get in to. Columiba is also solidy with the ultra-elites in terms of reputation, job prospects, etc.

NYU, on the other hand, is among the next grouping of schools. Just a personal annecdote, I spoke with an NYU representative at the MBA fair in San Francisco a few days ago. I asked her about the prospects of competing for a job on the west coast and spcifically after graduation from NYU and she kind of got a funny look on her face. NYU clearly has much influence in New York City (which should work fine for you) but for those planning to work elsewhere, it would be advisable to do your research.

Now regarding your scores, I think you are correct that many of the top schools (and especially Columbia and NYU) look closely at the Q portion. That said, your 46/78% is not far off from the mythical 80% mark that many schools prefer. However, because your GPA is towards the bottom end of the 80% range at these schools, and your GMAT is average to slightly above, you probably need to at least consider re-taking. As it stands, unless you can really distinguish yourself elsewhere in your application, you are a long shot at Columbia and probably no better than an average applicant at NYU. 720 is a very good score, but given the quantitative bents of these two schools, I think a few more points could help. If you think you can impove by 30 points overall, then your GMAT could effectively balance out your lower than average GPA.

man- you simply shine!

its the way you aproach, the way you think / reason and LAST (but not least) the way you present !

cheers
Intern
Joined: 05 Oct 2006
Posts: 43

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05 Oct 2006, 12:16
thanks for the insight pelihu...

i was actually reading more about Columbia and realized that it is indeed somewhat unreachable for me. i'm still looking at other schools though. As for retaking the GMATs, I'll pick up the books again in a month. I was a hermit for the month and a half before the test and I just need to unwind some!

if i can't pick up the math score on a consistent basis, then i guess i'm done...
SVP
Joined: 31 Jul 2006
Posts: 2302
Schools: Darden

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05 Oct 2006, 12:23
obeny81 wrote:
thanks for the insight pelihu...

i was actually reading more about Columbia and realized that it is indeed somewhat unreachable for me. i'm still looking at other schools though. As for retaking the GMATs, I'll pick up the books again in a month. I was a hermit for the month and a half before the test and I just need to unwind some!

if i can't pick up the math score on a consistent basis, then i guess i'm done...

Hey Obney81, my pleasure. I wanted to clarify something from my prior post. I don't want anyone to think I believe 720 is a bad score; it is a great score. My response was based on your targeting just two schools, one of which was Columbia. Now, if you were to target the usual 5-7 schools in the top 15 or so range, I think that there's a good chance you'll be admitted (just based on the information you've stated so far). Virginia, Duke, Cornell and some others are all right in your range.

Good plan for the GMAT, if you can get a consistent improvement, a higher school would be beneficial. If not, then it's not worth the trouble.
Intern
Joined: 05 Oct 2006
Posts: 43

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05 Oct 2006, 13:12
I'm still relatively new to all the rankings (if you can't tell ). I intend on applying for fall '08 so I do have some time to get my affairs in order before diving in.

I just hear alot of horror stories (ex. my kaplan gmat teacher scored a 730, ivy grad - 3.7 gpa , trader - rejected by all schools (top schools) he app'ed to, he got WL'ed by NYU but then rejected afterwards).

Needless to say I'm freaked out a bit by my chances
Director
Joined: 16 Aug 2005
Posts: 938
Location: France

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05 Oct 2006, 16:21
obeny81 wrote:

I just hear alot of horror stories (ex. my kaplan gmat teacher scored a 730, ivy grad - 3.7 gpa , trader - rejected by all schools (top schools) he app'ed to, he got WL'ed by NYU but then rejected afterwards).

Well that just shows that GMAT and GPA are not the only determinants of your entry into b-school. Your essays, interviews, recos are equally important.
_________________

I believe its yogurt!

05 Oct 2006, 16:21
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