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Re: GMAT FE 705 : STORY OF PERSEVERENCE AND PERSISTENCE [#permalink]
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Mukulkumar19 wrote:
At last, I am done with my GMAT prep. I took the GMAT FE online on 23rd Feb 2024 and scored 705 (99th percentile). The journey has been engaging, taxing, and tiring, yet it has been a journey that will remain as a learning experience and achievement with me forever. This post is an ode to the wonderful GMAT community, which has been there throughout my journey and my learnings, which may help someone still sailing in the boat of GMAT.

BACKGROUND: I am Major Mukul Kumar, currently serving in the Indian Army for the last 9 years. From an academic point of view, I am an Electronics and Communication Engineer, and due to the desire to serve the nation and to experience the charm of uniform, I chose the Indian Army as my profession after my graduation. After enjoying 8 years of professionally enriching and personally satisfying service in the Army, I decided to explore the world outside the Military and thought of taking the GMAT to enhance my chances of getting admitted to a prestigious B School. I started searching for resources in Nov 2022 and luckily early in my journey I stumbled upon the best resource available out there, which is GMATClub.

BACK TO BASICS: After acquainting myself with the syllabus of GMAT, I knew I needed to brush up my knowledge of Math and English, and for that, I chose Manhattan Prep books, including the foundation of Math and English, which are excellent resources for someone starting from scratch. For the last 8 years, I was out of touch with Math, and although we use English for conversation, the GMAT reasoning as well as the sentence correction is something that needed a strong foundation. All of this was going on along with my regular job, which was quite demanding, and on many days I did not get any chance to study anything. I was going slow at my own pace as I had already decided to apply to schools in 2025, so I still had time. I read all the books one after another, and I could see myself getting more comfortable with the format and the questions.

THE RECESS: Somewhere in the first quarter of 2023, GMAC announced that they are coming up with the new format for the GMAT exam. After some research, I found out that the new format is more suited to me primarily because my skills in SC were still unpolished, and I found the CR and RC part of the verbal more logical and easier to master. On discovering that the GMAT FE is only available in the last quarter of 2023, I got relaxed, and my studies almost came to a halt. It was a big mistake because as I discovered later that once you are out of touch, the GMAT skills again take time to come back to you.

THE PREP PHASE I: In Oct 2023, I started dedicating 2 hours to study every day after my office. The study comprised going through the Manhattan prep books once again, solving questions on GMATClub, reading expert solutions, and watching videos of experts like GMATNinja, Aditya crackverbal, KarishmaB, BrentGMATPrepNow, and avigutman on YouTube. These guys are lifesavers for any GMAT aspirant. I don’t think that anybody understands GMAT better than Charles GMATNinja in totality; his explanations of the CR and RC questions are the best I have ever come across, and his way of explaining and solving questions is what is needed to develop the correct verbal approach. The reasoning approach of Avi Gutman toward all the Quant questions is something that everyone should get familiar with to better understand what GMAT is actually trying to test. The webinars of Aditya on Inequalities and Absolute value are the best content on these subjects out there. I am truly grateful to these experts for making such content available free to us. While I was preparing for my exam, I came across the story of Vu PeachSnapple1. His story was really inspiring, and I could really connect to his story. I decided to contact him on GMATClub, and he generously connected with me over a call. On his recommendation, I gave my first mock and scored 635. He encouraged me, and I used to tell him at the end of the week what all I have studied throughout the week. I am really thankful to Vu’s support and encouragement. I was preparing well, but due to certain work commitments, I again could not study for a whole month. It was a bit frustrating because I wanted to dedicate more time towards my studies but could not.

THE PREP PHASE II: In the month of Nov, I decided that I needed a plan with a timeline that I could follow. Keeping in mind my work-related commitments, I planned a 15-day leave in Dec in which I will brush up my basics again and a 40-day leave in Jan-Feb in which I will put the final thrust before the final attempt. After brushing up my skills for 15 days, I attempted a Mock where I scored below 600. This was truly heartbreaking because my score went down even after learning new things. On introspection, I discovered that I have certain weak areas and to identify and fortify those weak areas I need a structured course. I subscribed to the Target Test prep Monthly plan as I had already tried their product earlier and really liked it. The TTP is a very comprehensive course that provides you everything which is needed to excel in GMAT. I started dedicating 8 hours per day on TTP and completed on an average a chapter a day. The course is lengthy, and I could go through the chapters at a faster pace because my basics were clear. The TTP filled in the chinks in my armor which were there. I thank ScottTargetTestPrep, JeffTargetTestPrep, and MartyTargetTestPrep for their constant support and guidance, and I congratulate them for coming up with the wonderful course.

THE FINAL WAR: After completing TTP in around 40 days, I again took a mock in which I scored 655. I was not totally satisfied, but I knew where I am lacking. I started solving OG questions and the latest OG, and let me confess it to you that there is no alternative to the official questions, especially for verbal and Data Insights. Due to the very limited resource of DI questions, I also purchased the DI question bank from MBA.com. I kept on practicing official questions, and if I got stuck somewhere I checked my approach and strengthened my knowledge about the subject. In the next mock, I spent too much time on a few quant questions, and my timing got derailed. As a result, I guessed the last few questions on Quant, and because I could not spare the thought of doing badly on my Quant section, I could not give my 100% to any section, and every question seemed hard to me on that day. I was really upset because after putting in so much effort, this was not the result which I expected. I contacted Marty MartyMurray for his thoughts, and he gave me his precious time to share his thoughts and told me not to panic and just treat it as an abrasion. These words coming from a great expert made me feel confident, and I learned my lessons from the Mock. After preparing for 2 days, I took the mock again and scored 695 this time. I felt happy and prepared. After taking one more mock and scoring 655 (could not complete the DI section), I felt confident and scheduled my GMAT exam on 23rd Feb.

TEST DAY EXPERIENCE: I scheduled my online exam early in the morning so that there would be minimum disturbance. The check-in was smooth, and the proctor was really helpful. In my Quant section, I encountered a few questions that took time, but I had already learned my lessons and did not waste much time on questions on which I was really struggling. As I knew that I have guessed a few questions, I was not expecting a wonderful score on Quant, but I did not let my disappointment with the quant section interfere with the other sections and attempted DI with a positive mindset. While answering MSR question, I noticed that I have done a mistake on the previous two questions of the same MSR, but I still kept my cool and decided to review those questions at the end of the section if I will get time. Unfortunately, I could not manage any spare time to go back to those questions and change my answer but was able to just finish the section in time. I took my 10 minutes break before the verbal section and decided to enter the section with a fresh and positive mindset. I attempted all verbal questions carefully and finished my exam 3 minutes before the stipulated time. On ending my exam, I was elated to see a score of 705 on the screen.
LEARNINGS FROM MY JOURNEY:
1) Prepare for your exam in one go; breaks in study are not good for efficient prep.
2) Basics are important, and you can only succeed if your foundation is strong.
3) Watch and read experts and see how they see a problem.
4) Even if your goal seems to be far, don’t lose hope. Keep faith in your hard work.
5) Setbacks are part of your journey. They are there for some reason, identify the reason and rectify it.
6) There can be no better teacher than a setback during preparation; learn from it and treat it as a stepping stone.
7) There is no alternative to the Official material. Give it its due.
8) Structured prep is important; decide your resource after giving it a try.
9) The penalty for leaving any question is very, very severe, so never spend much time on a single question. It almost wipes out the probability of a good score.
10) You don’t need to do every question correctly (I did 4 questions wrong in Q, 6 in DI, and 2 in verbal).
11) Official Mocks are the best indicator of your score, but don’t treat them as something that is bound to show your level of preparation. Several underlying factors will contribute to your score during your final exam. Learn test-taking strategies from Mocks, analyze the results, and make your strategy.
12) All Official Mocks can be taken twice, and you still won’t see any repeated questions as they save what questions they have fed you earlier.
13) Take advantage of GMATClub. This is a priceless resource which can connect you to the best experts in the world.
14) Write explanations of questions on the forum; you will be amazed by your own new level of understanding of a topic.

In the end, I would like to thank bb and Bunuel for your wonderful work and support. Keep up the good work.
 ­­­­­


Congratulations Mukul! Great score! Also, with your profile, you should be able to get into the school of your choice. 
Best wishes for your application.

­
Manager
Manager
Joined: 10 May 2022
Posts: 125
Own Kudos [?]: 103 [3]
Given Kudos: 54
Location: India
GMAT Focus 1:
705 Q84 V89 DI82
Send PM
Re: GMAT FE 705 : STORY OF PERSEVERENCE AND PERSISTENCE [#permalink]
2
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1
Bookmarks
bb wrote:
Wow! Amazing score!
Congratulations!!!

Are you applying in the fall? Have you decided on which schools?

Posted from my mobile device


Thanks bb. I will apply for R1 in 2025. I am targeting HBS, Stanford GSB, Wharton, LBS and INSEAD. Any suggestion from your side!!!
Manager
Manager
Joined: 10 May 2022
Posts: 125
Own Kudos [?]: 103 [1]
Given Kudos: 54
Location: India
GMAT Focus 1:
705 Q84 V89 DI82
Send PM
Re: GMAT FE 705 : STORY OF PERSEVERENCE AND PERSISTENCE [#permalink]
1
Kudos
KarishmaB wrote:
Mukulkumar19 wrote:
At last, I am done with my GMAT prep. I took the GMAT FE online on 23rd Feb 2024 and scored 705 (99th percentile). The journey has been engaging, taxing, and tiring, yet it has been a journey that will remain as a learning experience and achievement with me forever. This post is an ode to the wonderful GMAT community, which has been there throughout my journey and my learnings, which may help someone still sailing in the boat of GMAT.

BACKGROUND: I am Major Mukul Kumar, currently serving in the Indian Army for the last 9 years. From an academic point of view, I am an Electronics and Communication Engineer, and due to the desire to serve the nation and to experience the charm of uniform, I chose the Indian Army as my profession after my graduation. After enjoying 8 years of professionally enriching and personally satisfying service in the Army, I decided to explore the world outside the Military and thought of taking the GMAT to enhance my chances of getting admitted to a prestigious B School. I started searching for resources in Nov 2022 and luckily early in my journey I stumbled upon the best resource available out there, which is GMATClub.

BACK TO BASICS: After acquainting myself with the syllabus of GMAT, I knew I needed to brush up my knowledge of Math and English, and for that, I chose Manhattan Prep books, including the foundation of Math and English, which are excellent resources for someone starting from scratch. For the last 8 years, I was out of touch with Math, and although we use English for conversation, the GMAT reasoning as well as the sentence correction is something that needed a strong foundation. All of this was going on along with my regular job, which was quite demanding, and on many days I did not get any chance to study anything. I was going slow at my own pace as I had already decided to apply to schools in 2025, so I still had time. I read all the books one after another, and I could see myself getting more comfortable with the format and the questions.

THE RECESS: Somewhere in the first quarter of 2023, GMAC announced that they are coming up with the new format for the GMAT exam. After some research, I found out that the new format is more suited to me primarily because my skills in SC were still unpolished, and I found the CR and RC part of the verbal more logical and easier to master. On discovering that the GMAT FE is only available in the last quarter of 2023, I got relaxed, and my studies almost came to a halt. It was a big mistake because as I discovered later that once you are out of touch, the GMAT skills again take time to come back to you.

THE PREP PHASE I: In Oct 2023, I started dedicating 2 hours to study every day after my office. The study comprised going through the Manhattan prep books once again, solving questions on GMATClub, reading expert solutions, and watching videos of experts like GMATNinja, Aditya crackverbal, KarishmaB, BrentGMATPrepNow, and avigutman on YouTube. These guys are lifesavers for any GMAT aspirant. I don’t think that anybody understands GMAT better than Charles GMATNinja in totality; his explanations of the CR and RC questions are the best I have ever come across, and his way of explaining and solving questions is what is needed to develop the correct verbal approach. The reasoning approach of Avi Gutman toward all the Quant questions is something that everyone should get familiar with to better understand what GMAT is actually trying to test. The webinars of Aditya on Inequalities and Absolute value are the best content on these subjects out there. I am truly grateful to these experts for making such content available free to us. While I was preparing for my exam, I came across the story of Vu PeachSnapple1. His story was really inspiring, and I could really connect to his story. I decided to contact him on GMATClub, and he generously connected with me over a call. On his recommendation, I gave my first mock and scored 635. He encouraged me, and I used to tell him at the end of the week what all I have studied throughout the week. I am really thankful to Vu’s support and encouragement. I was preparing well, but due to certain work commitments, I again could not study for a whole month. It was a bit frustrating because I wanted to dedicate more time towards my studies but could not.

THE PREP PHASE II: In the month of Nov, I decided that I needed a plan with a timeline that I could follow. Keeping in mind my work-related commitments, I planned a 15-day leave in Dec in which I will brush up my basics again and a 40-day leave in Jan-Feb in which I will put the final thrust before the final attempt. After brushing up my skills for 15 days, I attempted a Mock where I scored below 600. This was truly heartbreaking because my score went down even after learning new things. On introspection, I discovered that I have certain weak areas and to identify and fortify those weak areas I need a structured course. I subscribed to the Target Test prep Monthly plan as I had already tried their product earlier and really liked it. The TTP is a very comprehensive course that provides you everything which is needed to excel in GMAT. I started dedicating 8 hours per day on TTP and completed on an average a chapter a day. The course is lengthy, and I could go through the chapters at a faster pace because my basics were clear. The TTP filled in the chinks in my armor which were there. I thank ScottTargetTestPrep, JeffTargetTestPrep, and MartyTargetTestPrep for their constant support and guidance, and I congratulate them for coming up with the wonderful course.

THE FINAL WAR: After completing TTP in around 40 days, I again took a mock in which I scored 655. I was not totally satisfied, but I knew where I am lacking. I started solving OG questions and the latest OG, and let me confess it to you that there is no alternative to the official questions, especially for verbal and Data Insights. Due to the very limited resource of DI questions, I also purchased the DI question bank from MBA.com. I kept on practicing official questions, and if I got stuck somewhere I checked my approach and strengthened my knowledge about the subject. In the next mock, I spent too much time on a few quant questions, and my timing got derailed. As a result, I guessed the last few questions on Quant, and because I could not spare the thought of doing badly on my Quant section, I could not give my 100% to any section, and every question seemed hard to me on that day. I was really upset because after putting in so much effort, this was not the result which I expected. I contacted Marty MartyMurray for his thoughts, and he gave me his precious time to share his thoughts and told me not to panic and just treat it as an abrasion. These words coming from a great expert made me feel confident, and I learned my lessons from the Mock. After preparing for 2 days, I took the mock again and scored 695 this time. I felt happy and prepared. After taking one more mock and scoring 655 (could not complete the DI section), I felt confident and scheduled my GMAT exam on 23rd Feb.

TEST DAY EXPERIENCE: I scheduled my online exam early in the morning so that there would be minimum disturbance. The check-in was smooth, and the proctor was really helpful. In my Quant section, I encountered a few questions that took time, but I had already learned my lessons and did not waste much time on questions on which I was really struggling. As I knew that I have guessed a few questions, I was not expecting a wonderful score on Quant, but I did not let my disappointment with the quant section interfere with the other sections and attempted DI with a positive mindset. While answering MSR question, I noticed that I have done a mistake on the previous two questions of the same MSR, but I still kept my cool and decided to review those questions at the end of the section if I will get time. Unfortunately, I could not manage any spare time to go back to those questions and change my answer but was able to just finish the section in time. I took my 10 minutes break before the verbal section and decided to enter the section with a fresh and positive mindset. I attempted all verbal questions carefully and finished my exam 3 minutes before the stipulated time. On ending my exam, I was elated to see a score of 705 on the screen.
LEARNINGS FROM MY JOURNEY:
1) Prepare for your exam in one go; breaks in study are not good for efficient prep.
2) Basics are important, and you can only succeed if your foundation is strong.
3) Watch and read experts and see how they see a problem.
4) Even if your goal seems to be far, don’t lose hope. Keep faith in your hard work.
5) Setbacks are part of your journey. They are there for some reason, identify the reason and rectify it.
6) There can be no better teacher than a setback during preparation; learn from it and treat it as a stepping stone.
7) There is no alternative to the Official material. Give it its due.
8) Structured prep is important; decide your resource after giving it a try.
9) The penalty for leaving any question is very, very severe, so never spend much time on a single question. It almost wipes out the probability of a good score.
10) You don’t need to do every question correctly (I did 4 questions wrong in Q, 6 in DI, and 2 in verbal).
11) Official Mocks are the best indicator of your score, but don’t treat them as something that is bound to show your level of preparation. Several underlying factors will contribute to your score during your final exam. Learn test-taking strategies from Mocks, analyze the results, and make your strategy.
12) All Official Mocks can be taken twice, and you still won’t see any repeated questions as they save what questions they have fed you earlier.
13) Take advantage of GMATClub. This is a priceless resource which can connect you to the best experts in the world.
14) Write explanations of questions on the forum; you will be amazed by your own new level of understanding of a topic.

In the end, I would like to thank bb and Bunuel for your wonderful work and support. Keep up the good work.
 ­­­­­


Congratulations Mukul! Great score! Also, with your profile, you should be able to get into the school of your choice. 
Best wishes for your application.

­


Thank you so much KarishmaB.

Posted from my mobile device
Intern
Intern
Joined: 16 Nov 2023
Posts: 42
Own Kudos [?]: 39 [2]
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GMAT Focus 1:
695 Q90 V87 DI77
Send PM
Re: GMAT FE 705 : STORY OF PERSEVERENCE AND PERSISTENCE [#permalink]
2
Kudos
Mukulkumar19 wrote:
At last, I am done with my GMAT prep. I took the GMAT FE online on 23rd Feb 2024 and scored 705 (99th percentile). The journey has been engaging, taxing, and tiring, yet it has been a journey that will remain as a learning experience and achievement with me forever. This post is an ode to the wonderful GMAT community, which has been there throughout my journey and my learnings, which may help someone still sailing in the boat of GMAT.

BACKGROUND: I am Major Mukul Kumar, currently serving in the Indian Army for the last 9 years. From an academic point of view, I am an Electronics and Communication Engineer, and due to the desire to serve the nation and to experience the charm of uniform, I chose the Indian Army as my profession after my graduation. After enjoying 8 years of professionally enriching and personally satisfying service in the Army, I decided to explore the world outside the Military and thought of taking the GMAT to enhance my chances of getting admitted to a prestigious B School. I started searching for resources in Nov 2022 and luckily early in my journey I stumbled upon the best resource available out there, which is GMATClub.

BACK TO BASICS: After acquainting myself with the syllabus of GMAT, I knew I needed to brush up my knowledge of Math and English, and for that, I chose Manhattan Prep books, including the foundation of Math and English, which are excellent resources for someone starting from scratch. For the last 8 years, I was out of touch with Math, and although we use English for conversation, the GMAT reasoning as well as the sentence correction is something that needed a strong foundation. All of this was going on along with my regular job, which was quite demanding, and on many days I did not get any chance to study anything. I was going slow at my own pace as I had already decided to apply to schools in 2025, so I still had time. I read all the books one after another, and I could see myself getting more comfortable with the format and the questions.

THE RECESS: Somewhere in the first quarter of 2023, GMAC announced that they are coming up with the new format for the GMAT exam. After some research, I found out that the new format is more suited to me primarily because my skills in SC were still unpolished, and I found the CR and RC part of the verbal more logical and easier to master. On discovering that the GMAT FE is only available in the last quarter of 2023, I got relaxed, and my studies almost came to a halt. It was a big mistake because as I discovered later that once you are out of touch, the GMAT skills again take time to come back to you.

THE PREP PHASE I: In Oct 2023, I started dedicating 2 hours to study every day after my office. The study comprised going through the Manhattan prep books once again, solving questions on GMATClub, reading expert solutions, and watching videos of experts like GMATNinja, Aditya crackverbal, KarishmaB, BrentGMATPrepNow, and avigutman on YouTube. These guys are lifesavers for any GMAT aspirant. I don’t think that anybody understands GMAT better than Charles GMATNinja in totality; his explanations of the CR and RC questions are the best I have ever come across, and his way of explaining and solving questions is what is needed to develop the correct verbal approach. The reasoning approach of Avi Gutman toward all the Quant questions is something that everyone should get familiar with to better understand what GMAT is actually trying to test. The webinars of Aditya on Inequalities and Absolute value are the best content on these subjects out there. I am truly grateful to these experts for making such content available free to us. While I was preparing for my exam, I came across the story of Vu PeachSnapple1. His story was really inspiring, and I could really connect to his story. I decided to contact him on GMATClub, and he generously connected with me over a call. On his recommendation, I gave my first mock and scored 635. He encouraged me, and I used to tell him at the end of the week what all I have studied throughout the week. I am really thankful to Vu’s support and encouragement. I was preparing well, but due to certain work commitments, I again could not study for a whole month. It was a bit frustrating because I wanted to dedicate more time towards my studies but could not.

THE PREP PHASE II: In the month of Nov, I decided that I needed a plan with a timeline that I could follow. Keeping in mind my work-related commitments, I planned a 15-day leave in Dec in which I will brush up my basics again and a 40-day leave in Jan-Feb in which I will put the final thrust before the final attempt. After brushing up my skills for 15 days, I attempted a Mock where I scored below 600. This was truly heartbreaking because my score went down even after learning new things. On introspection, I discovered that I have certain weak areas and to identify and fortify those weak areas I need a structured course. I subscribed to the Target Test prep Monthly plan as I had already tried their product earlier and really liked it. The TTP is a very comprehensive course that provides you everything which is needed to excel in GMAT. I started dedicating 8 hours per day on TTP and completed on an average a chapter a day. The course is lengthy, and I could go through the chapters at a faster pace because my basics were clear. The TTP filled in the chinks in my armor which were there. I thank ScottTargetTestPrep, JeffTargetTestPrep, and MartyTargetTestPrep for their constant support and guidance, and I congratulate them for coming up with the wonderful course.

THE FINAL WAR: After completing TTP in around 40 days, I again took a mock in which I scored 655. I was not totally satisfied, but I knew where I am lacking. I started solving OG questions and the latest OG, and let me confess it to you that there is no alternative to the official questions, especially for verbal and Data Insights. Due to the very limited resource of DI questions, I also purchased the DI question bank from MBA.com. I kept on practicing official questions, and if I got stuck somewhere I checked my approach and strengthened my knowledge about the subject. In the next mock, I spent too much time on a few quant questions, and my timing got derailed. As a result, I guessed the last few questions on Quant, and because I could not spare the thought of doing badly on my Quant section, I could not give my 100% to any section, and every question seemed hard to me on that day. I was really upset because after putting in so much effort, this was not the result which I expected. I contacted Marty MartyMurray for his thoughts, and he gave me his precious time to share his thoughts and told me not to panic and just treat it as an abrasion. These words coming from a great expert made me feel confident, and I learned my lessons from the Mock. After preparing for 2 days, I took the mock again and scored 695 this time. I felt happy and prepared. After taking one more mock and scoring 655 (could not complete the DI section), I felt confident and scheduled my GMAT exam on 23rd Feb.

TEST DAY EXPERIENCE: I scheduled my online exam early in the morning so that there would be minimum disturbance. The check-in was smooth, and the proctor was really helpful. In my Quant section, I encountered a few questions that took time, but I had already learned my lessons and did not waste much time on questions on which I was really struggling. As I knew that I have guessed a few questions, I was not expecting a wonderful score on Quant, but I did not let my disappointment with the quant section interfere with the other sections and attempted DI with a positive mindset. While answering MSR question, I noticed that I have done a mistake on the previous two questions of the same MSR, but I still kept my cool and decided to review those questions at the end of the section if I will get time. Unfortunately, I could not manage any spare time to go back to those questions and change my answer but was able to just finish the section in time. I took my 10 minutes break before the verbal section and decided to enter the section with a fresh and positive mindset. I attempted all verbal questions carefully and finished my exam 3 minutes before the stipulated time. On ending my exam, I was elated to see a score of 705 on the screen.
LEARNINGS FROM MY JOURNEY:
1) Prepare for your exam in one go; breaks in study are not good for efficient prep.
2) Basics are important, and you can only succeed if your foundation is strong.
3) Watch and read experts and see how they see a problem.
4) Even if your goal seems to be far, don’t lose hope. Keep faith in your hard work.
5) Setbacks are part of your journey. They are there for some reason, identify the reason and rectify it.
6) There can be no better teacher than a setback during preparation; learn from it and treat it as a stepping stone.
7) There is no alternative to the Official material. Give it its due.
8) Structured prep is important; decide your resource after giving it a try.
9) The penalty for leaving any question is very, very severe, so never spend much time on a single question. It almost wipes out the probability of a good score.
10) You don’t need to do every question correctly (I did 4 questions wrong in Q, 6 in DI, and 2 in verbal).
11) Official Mocks are the best indicator of your score, but don’t treat them as something that is bound to show your level of preparation. Several underlying factors will contribute to your score during your final exam. Learn test-taking strategies from Mocks, analyze the results, and make your strategy.
12) All Official Mocks can be taken twice, and you still won’t see any repeated questions as they save what questions they have fed you earlier.
13) Take advantage of GMATClub. This is a priceless resource which can connect you to the best experts in the world.
14) Write explanations of questions on the forum; you will be amazed by your own new level of understanding of a topic.

In the end, I would like to thank bb and Bunuel for your wonderful work and support. Keep up the good work.
 ­­­­­

­This sounds so inspiring! Congratulations Mukul!
Manager
Manager
Joined: 10 May 2022
Posts: 125
Own Kudos [?]: 103 [2]
Given Kudos: 54
Location: India
GMAT Focus 1:
705 Q84 V89 DI82
Send PM
Re: GMAT FE 705 : STORY OF PERSEVERENCE AND PERSISTENCE [#permalink]
2
Kudos
Rishitha0311 wrote:
Mukulkumar19 wrote:
At last, I am done with my GMAT prep. I took the GMAT FE online on 23rd Feb 2024 and scored 705 (99th percentile). The journey has been engaging, taxing, and tiring, yet it has been a journey that will remain as a learning experience and achievement with me forever. This post is an ode to the wonderful GMAT community, which has been there throughout my journey and my learnings, which may help someone still sailing in the boat of GMAT.

BACKGROUND: I am Major Mukul Kumar, currently serving in the Indian Army for the last 9 years. From an academic point of view, I am an Electronics and Communication Engineer, and due to the desire to serve the nation and to experience the charm of uniform, I chose the Indian Army as my profession after my graduation. After enjoying 8 years of professionally enriching and personally satisfying service in the Army, I decided to explore the world outside the Military and thought of taking the GMAT to enhance my chances of getting admitted to a prestigious B School. I started searching for resources in Nov 2022 and luckily early in my journey I stumbled upon the best resource available out there, which is GMATClub.

BACK TO BASICS: After acquainting myself with the syllabus of GMAT, I knew I needed to brush up my knowledge of Math and English, and for that, I chose Manhattan Prep books, including the foundation of Math and English, which are excellent resources for someone starting from scratch. For the last 8 years, I was out of touch with Math, and although we use English for conversation, the GMAT reasoning as well as the sentence correction is something that needed a strong foundation. All of this was going on along with my regular job, which was quite demanding, and on many days I did not get any chance to study anything. I was going slow at my own pace as I had already decided to apply to schools in 2025, so I still had time. I read all the books one after another, and I could see myself getting more comfortable with the format and the questions.

THE RECESS: Somewhere in the first quarter of 2023, GMAC announced that they are coming up with the new format for the GMAT exam. After some research, I found out that the new format is more suited to me primarily because my skills in SC were still unpolished, and I found the CR and RC part of the verbal more logical and easier to master. On discovering that the GMAT FE is only available in the last quarter of 2023, I got relaxed, and my studies almost came to a halt. It was a big mistake because as I discovered later that once you are out of touch, the GMAT skills again take time to come back to you.

THE PREP PHASE I: In Oct 2023, I started dedicating 2 hours to study every day after my office. The study comprised going through the Manhattan prep books once again, solving questions on GMATClub, reading expert solutions, and watching videos of experts like GMATNinja, Aditya crackverbal, KarishmaB, BrentGMATPrepNow, and avigutman on YouTube. These guys are lifesavers for any GMAT aspirant. I don’t think that anybody understands GMAT better than Charles GMATNinja in totality; his explanations of the CR and RC questions are the best I have ever come across, and his way of explaining and solving questions is what is needed to develop the correct verbal approach. The reasoning approach of Avi Gutman toward all the Quant questions is something that everyone should get familiar with to better understand what GMAT is actually trying to test. The webinars of Aditya on Inequalities and Absolute value are the best content on these subjects out there. I am truly grateful to these experts for making such content available free to us. While I was preparing for my exam, I came across the story of Vu PeachSnapple1. His story was really inspiring, and I could really connect to his story. I decided to contact him on GMATClub, and he generously connected with me over a call. On his recommendation, I gave my first mock and scored 635. He encouraged me, and I used to tell him at the end of the week what all I have studied throughout the week. I am really thankful to Vu’s support and encouragement. I was preparing well, but due to certain work commitments, I again could not study for a whole month. It was a bit frustrating because I wanted to dedicate more time towards my studies but could not.

THE PREP PHASE II: In the month of Nov, I decided that I needed a plan with a timeline that I could follow. Keeping in mind my work-related commitments, I planned a 15-day leave in Dec in which I will brush up my basics again and a 40-day leave in Jan-Feb in which I will put the final thrust before the final attempt. After brushing up my skills for 15 days, I attempted a Mock where I scored below 600. This was truly heartbreaking because my score went down even after learning new things. On introspection, I discovered that I have certain weak areas and to identify and fortify those weak areas I need a structured course. I subscribed to the Target Test prep Monthly plan as I had already tried their product earlier and really liked it. The TTP is a very comprehensive course that provides you everything which is needed to excel in GMAT. I started dedicating 8 hours per day on TTP and completed on an average a chapter a day. The course is lengthy, and I could go through the chapters at a faster pace because my basics were clear. The TTP filled in the chinks in my armor which were there. I thank ScottTargetTestPrep, JeffTargetTestPrep, and MartyTargetTestPrep for their constant support and guidance, and I congratulate them for coming up with the wonderful course.

THE FINAL WAR: After completing TTP in around 40 days, I again took a mock in which I scored 655. I was not totally satisfied, but I knew where I am lacking. I started solving OG questions and the latest OG, and let me confess it to you that there is no alternative to the official questions, especially for verbal and Data Insights. Due to the very limited resource of DI questions, I also purchased the DI question bank from MBA.com. I kept on practicing official questions, and if I got stuck somewhere I checked my approach and strengthened my knowledge about the subject. In the next mock, I spent too much time on a few quant questions, and my timing got derailed. As a result, I guessed the last few questions on Quant, and because I could not spare the thought of doing badly on my Quant section, I could not give my 100% to any section, and every question seemed hard to me on that day. I was really upset because after putting in so much effort, this was not the result which I expected. I contacted Marty MartyMurray for his thoughts, and he gave me his precious time to share his thoughts and told me not to panic and just treat it as an abrasion. These words coming from a great expert made me feel confident, and I learned my lessons from the Mock. After preparing for 2 days, I took the mock again and scored 695 this time. I felt happy and prepared. After taking one more mock and scoring 655 (could not complete the DI section), I felt confident and scheduled my GMAT exam on 23rd Feb.

TEST DAY EXPERIENCE: I scheduled my online exam early in the morning so that there would be minimum disturbance. The check-in was smooth, and the proctor was really helpful. In my Quant section, I encountered a few questions that took time, but I had already learned my lessons and did not waste much time on questions on which I was really struggling. As I knew that I have guessed a few questions, I was not expecting a wonderful score on Quant, but I did not let my disappointment with the quant section interfere with the other sections and attempted DI with a positive mindset. While answering MSR question, I noticed that I have done a mistake on the previous two questions of the same MSR, but I still kept my cool and decided to review those questions at the end of the section if I will get time. Unfortunately, I could not manage any spare time to go back to those questions and change my answer but was able to just finish the section in time. I took my 10 minutes break before the verbal section and decided to enter the section with a fresh and positive mindset. I attempted all verbal questions carefully and finished my exam 3 minutes before the stipulated time. On ending my exam, I was elated to see a score of 705 on the screen.
LEARNINGS FROM MY JOURNEY:
1) Prepare for your exam in one go; breaks in study are not good for efficient prep.
2) Basics are important, and you can only succeed if your foundation is strong.
3) Watch and read experts and see how they see a problem.
4) Even if your goal seems to be far, don’t lose hope. Keep faith in your hard work.
5) Setbacks are part of your journey. They are there for some reason, identify the reason and rectify it.
6) There can be no better teacher than a setback during preparation; learn from it and treat it as a stepping stone.
7) There is no alternative to the Official material. Give it its due.
8) Structured prep is important; decide your resource after giving it a try.
9) The penalty for leaving any question is very, very severe, so never spend much time on a single question. It almost wipes out the probability of a good score.
10) You don’t need to do every question correctly (I did 4 questions wrong in Q, 6 in DI, and 2 in verbal).
11) Official Mocks are the best indicator of your score, but don’t treat them as something that is bound to show your level of preparation. Several underlying factors will contribute to your score during your final exam. Learn test-taking strategies from Mocks, analyze the results, and make your strategy.
12) All Official Mocks can be taken twice, and you still won’t see any repeated questions as they save what questions they have fed you earlier.
13) Take advantage of GMATClub. This is a priceless resource which can connect you to the best experts in the world.
14) Write explanations of questions on the forum; you will be amazed by your own new level of understanding of a topic.

In the end, I would like to thank bb and Bunuel for your wonderful work and support. Keep up the good work.
 ­­­­­

­This sounds so inspiring! Congratulations Mukul!


Thank you Rishita. I read your debrief few days prior to my exam and I was inspired by your journey :) . That is the beauty of GMATClub.

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Mukulkumar19 wrote:
Rishitha0311 wrote:
Mukulkumar19 wrote:
At last, I am done with my GMAT prep. I took the GMAT FE online on 23rd Feb 2024 and scored 705 (99th percentile). The journey has been engaging, taxing, and tiring, yet it has been a journey that will remain as a learning experience and achievement with me forever. This post is an ode to the wonderful GMAT community, which has been there throughout my journey and my learnings, which may help someone still sailing in the boat of GMAT.

BACKGROUND: I am Major Mukul Kumar, currently serving in the Indian Army for the last 9 years. From an academic point of view, I am an Electronics and Communication Engineer, and due to the desire to serve the nation and to experience the charm of uniform, I chose the Indian Army as my profession after my graduation. After enjoying 8 years of professionally enriching and personally satisfying service in the Army, I decided to explore the world outside the Military and thought of taking the GMAT to enhance my chances of getting admitted to a prestigious B School. I started searching for resources in Nov 2022 and luckily early in my journey I stumbled upon the best resource available out there, which is GMATClub.

BACK TO BASICS: After acquainting myself with the syllabus of GMAT, I knew I needed to brush up my knowledge of Math and English, and for that, I chose Manhattan Prep books, including the foundation of Math and English, which are excellent resources for someone starting from scratch. For the last 8 years, I was out of touch with Math, and although we use English for conversation, the GMAT reasoning as well as the sentence correction is something that needed a strong foundation. All of this was going on along with my regular job, which was quite demanding, and on many days I did not get any chance to study anything. I was going slow at my own pace as I had already decided to apply to schools in 2025, so I still had time. I read all the books one after another, and I could see myself getting more comfortable with the format and the questions.

THE RECESS: Somewhere in the first quarter of 2023, GMAC announced that they are coming up with the new format for the GMAT exam. After some research, I found out that the new format is more suited to me primarily because my skills in SC were still unpolished, and I found the CR and RC part of the verbal more logical and easier to master. On discovering that the GMAT FE is only available in the last quarter of 2023, I got relaxed, and my studies almost came to a halt. It was a big mistake because as I discovered later that once you are out of touch, the GMAT skills again take time to come back to you.

THE PREP PHASE I: In Oct 2023, I started dedicating 2 hours to study every day after my office. The study comprised going through the Manhattan prep books once again, solving questions on GMATClub, reading expert solutions, and watching videos of experts like GMATNinja, Aditya crackverbal, KarishmaB, BrentGMATPrepNow, and avigutman on YouTube. These guys are lifesavers for any GMAT aspirant. I don’t think that anybody understands GMAT better than Charles GMATNinja in totality; his explanations of the CR and RC questions are the best I have ever come across, and his way of explaining and solving questions is what is needed to develop the correct verbal approach. The reasoning approach of Avi Gutman toward all the Quant questions is something that everyone should get familiar with to better understand what GMAT is actually trying to test. The webinars of Aditya on Inequalities and Absolute value are the best content on these subjects out there. I am truly grateful to these experts for making such content available free to us. While I was preparing for my exam, I came across the story of Vu PeachSnapple1. His story was really inspiring, and I could really connect to his story. I decided to contact him on GMATClub, and he generously connected with me over a call. On his recommendation, I gave my first mock and scored 635. He encouraged me, and I used to tell him at the end of the week what all I have studied throughout the week. I am really thankful to Vu’s support and encouragement. I was preparing well, but due to certain work commitments, I again could not study for a whole month. It was a bit frustrating because I wanted to dedicate more time towards my studies but could not.

THE PREP PHASE II: In the month of Nov, I decided that I needed a plan with a timeline that I could follow. Keeping in mind my work-related commitments, I planned a 15-day leave in Dec in which I will brush up my basics again and a 40-day leave in Jan-Feb in which I will put the final thrust before the final attempt. After brushing up my skills for 15 days, I attempted a Mock where I scored below 600. This was truly heartbreaking because my score went down even after learning new things. On introspection, I discovered that I have certain weak areas and to identify and fortify those weak areas I need a structured course. I subscribed to the Target Test prep Monthly plan as I had already tried their product earlier and really liked it. The TTP is a very comprehensive course that provides you everything which is needed to excel in GMAT. I started dedicating 8 hours per day on TTP and completed on an average a chapter a day. The course is lengthy, and I could go through the chapters at a faster pace because my basics were clear. The TTP filled in the chinks in my armor which were there. I thank ScottTargetTestPrep, JeffTargetTestPrep, and MartyTargetTestPrep for their constant support and guidance, and I congratulate them for coming up with the wonderful course.

THE FINAL WAR: After completing TTP in around 40 days, I again took a mock in which I scored 655. I was not totally satisfied, but I knew where I am lacking. I started solving OG questions and the latest OG, and let me confess it to you that there is no alternative to the official questions, especially for verbal and Data Insights. Due to the very limited resource of DI questions, I also purchased the DI question bank from MBA.com. I kept on practicing official questions, and if I got stuck somewhere I checked my approach and strengthened my knowledge about the subject. In the next mock, I spent too much time on a few quant questions, and my timing got derailed. As a result, I guessed the last few questions on Quant, and because I could not spare the thought of doing badly on my Quant section, I could not give my 100% to any section, and every question seemed hard to me on that day. I was really upset because after putting in so much effort, this was not the result which I expected. I contacted Marty MartyMurray for his thoughts, and he gave me his precious time to share his thoughts and told me not to panic and just treat it as an abrasion. These words coming from a great expert made me feel confident, and I learned my lessons from the Mock. After preparing for 2 days, I took the mock again and scored 695 this time. I felt happy and prepared. After taking one more mock and scoring 655 (could not complete the DI section), I felt confident and scheduled my GMAT exam on 23rd Feb.

TEST DAY EXPERIENCE: I scheduled my online exam early in the morning so that there would be minimum disturbance. The check-in was smooth, and the proctor was really helpful. In my Quant section, I encountered a few questions that took time, but I had already learned my lessons and did not waste much time on questions on which I was really struggling. As I knew that I have guessed a few questions, I was not expecting a wonderful score on Quant, but I did not let my disappointment with the quant section interfere with the other sections and attempted DI with a positive mindset. While answering MSR question, I noticed that I have done a mistake on the previous two questions of the same MSR, but I still kept my cool and decided to review those questions at the end of the section if I will get time. Unfortunately, I could not manage any spare time to go back to those questions and change my answer but was able to just finish the section in time. I took my 10 minutes break before the verbal section and decided to enter the section with a fresh and positive mindset. I attempted all verbal questions carefully and finished my exam 3 minutes before the stipulated time. On ending my exam, I was elated to see a score of 705 on the screen.
LEARNINGS FROM MY JOURNEY:
1) Prepare for your exam in one go; breaks in study are not good for efficient prep.
2) Basics are important, and you can only succeed if your foundation is strong.
3) Watch and read experts and see how they see a problem.
4) Even if your goal seems to be far, don’t lose hope. Keep faith in your hard work.
5) Setbacks are part of your journey. They are there for some reason, identify the reason and rectify it.
6) There can be no better teacher than a setback during preparation; learn from it and treat it as a stepping stone.
7) There is no alternative to the Official material. Give it its due.
8) Structured prep is important; decide your resource after giving it a try.
9) The penalty for leaving any question is very, very severe, so never spend much time on a single question. It almost wipes out the probability of a good score.
10) You don’t need to do every question correctly (I did 4 questions wrong in Q, 6 in DI, and 2 in verbal).
11) Official Mocks are the best indicator of your score, but don’t treat them as something that is bound to show your level of preparation. Several underlying factors will contribute to your score during your final exam. Learn test-taking strategies from Mocks, analyze the results, and make your strategy.
12) All Official Mocks can be taken twice, and you still won’t see any repeated questions as they save what questions they have fed you earlier.
13) Take advantage of GMATClub. This is a priceless resource which can connect you to the best experts in the world.
14) Write explanations of questions on the forum; you will be amazed by your own new level of understanding of a topic.

In the end, I would like to thank bb and Bunuel for your wonderful work and support. Keep up the good work.
 ­­­­­

­This sounds so inspiring! Congratulations Mukul!


Thank you Rishita. I read your debrief few days prior to my exam and I was inspired by your journey :) . That is the beauty of GMATClub.

Posted from my mobile device


Absolutely, it's a fantastic community! Wishing you the best of luck with your applications!
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Re: GMAT FE 705 : STORY OF PERSEVERENCE AND PERSISTENCE [#permalink]
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­Mukul, you've finally made it! I've never doubted you, as I never will. I can't believe that it has been months since you reached out to me, and our friendship kindled. I still remember vividly our weekly (and sometimes even monthly) calls in which you were juggling between your studying and your duties, but you've never shown a sign of backing down. I'd argue we had developed even beyond our mentor-mentee relationship. I'm glad that my story has inspired you to nail the GMAT. A 99th percentile is no easy feat. Please stay in touch! I hope your story will inspire several as mine inspired yours. Again, imagine how this community would grow if we just started to reach out and push through till the end.
Your friend - Vu­
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PeachSnapple1 wrote:
­Mukul, you've finally made it! I've never doubted you, as I never will. I can't believe that it has been months since you reached out to me, and our friendship kindled. I still remember vividly our weekly (and sometimes even monthly) calls in which you were juggling between your studying and your duties, but you've never shown a sign of backing down. I'd argue we had developed even beyond our mentor-mentee relationship. I'm glad that my story has inspired you to nail the GMAT. A 99th percentile is no easy feat. Please stay in touch! I hope your story will inspire several as mine inspired yours. Again, imagine how this community would grow if we just started to reach out and push through till the end.
Your friend - Vu­


Absolutely Vu, it would be my pleasure to be of any help to anybody.

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Expert Reply
 
Quote:
LEARNINGS FROM MY JOURNEY:
1) Prepare for your exam in one go; breaks in study are not good for efficient prep.
2) Basics are important, and you can only succeed if your foundation is strong.
3) Watch and read experts and see how they see a problem.
4) Even if your goal seems to be far, don’t lose hope. Keep faith in your hard work.
5) Setbacks are part of your journey. They are there for some reason, identify the reason and rectify it.
6) There can be no better teacher than a setback during preparation; learn from it and treat it as a stepping stone.
7) There is no alternative to the Official material. Give it its due.
8) Structured prep is important; decide your resource after giving it a try.
9) The penalty for leaving any question is very, very severe, so never spend much time on a single question. It almost wipes out the probability of a good score.
10) You don’t need to do every question correctly (I did 4 questions wrong in Q, 6 in DI, and 2 in verbal).
11) Official Mocks are the best indicator of your score, but don’t treat them as something that is bound to show your level of preparation. Several underlying factors will contribute to your score during your final exam. Learn test-taking strategies from Mocks, analyze the results, and make your strategy.
12) All Official Mocks can be taken twice, and you still won’t see any repeated questions as they save what questions they have fed you earlier.
13) Take advantage of GMATClub. This is a priceless resource which can connect you to the best experts in the world.
14) Write explanations of questions on the forum; you will be amazed by your own new level of understanding of a topic.
­­­­

­Great work, Mukulkumar19!! 
Fantastic advice in your "Learnings from my Journey"!!
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Re: GMAT FE 705 : STORY OF PERSEVERENCE AND PERSISTENCE [#permalink]
ScottTargetTestPrep wrote:
 
Quote:
LEARNINGS FROM MY JOURNEY:
1) Prepare for your exam in one go; breaks in study are not good for efficient prep.
2) Basics are important, and you can only succeed if your foundation is strong.
3) Watch and read experts and see how they see a problem.
4) Even if your goal seems to be far, don’t lose hope. Keep faith in your hard work.
5) Setbacks are part of your journey. They are there for some reason, identify the reason and rectify it.
6) There can be no better teacher than a setback during preparation; learn from it and treat it as a stepping stone.
7) There is no alternative to the Official material. Give it its due.
8) Structured prep is important; decide your resource after giving it a try.
9) The penalty for leaving any question is very, very severe, so never spend much time on a single question. It almost wipes out the probability of a good score.
10) You don’t need to do every question correctly (I did 4 questions wrong in Q, 6 in DI, and 2 in verbal).
11) Official Mocks are the best indicator of your score, but don’t treat them as something that is bound to show your level of preparation. Several underlying factors will contribute to your score during your final exam. Learn test-taking strategies from Mocks, analyze the results, and make your strategy.
12) All Official Mocks can be taken twice, and you still won’t see any repeated questions as they save what questions they have fed you earlier.
13) Take advantage of GMATClub. This is a priceless resource which can connect you to the best experts in the world.
14) Write explanations of questions on the forum; you will be amazed by your own new level of understanding of a topic.
­­­­

­Great work, Mukulkumar19!! 
Fantastic advice in your "Learnings from my Journey"!!



Thanks ScottTargetTestPrep. Your videos and approach during the TTP course has helped me alot.

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Quote:
 Thanks ScottTargetTestPrep. Your videos and approach during the TTP course has helped me alot.

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­Glad to hear it! 
I wish you all the best with your applications!
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Congratulations Mukul !, Amazing Score. All the best for your applications.­
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Congratulations, Mukul! All the best!🚀

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Re: GMAT FE 705 : STORY OF PERSEVERENCE AND PERSISTENCE [#permalink]
Congratulations, Mukul! Good Luck on all your future endeavors.

Can you please elaborate on how you prepared for DI. What kind of Strategy you used and how to improve the time pacing.

Thankyou.
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jamsss wrote:
Congratulations, Mukul! Good Luck on all your future endeavors.

Can you please elaborate on how you prepared for DI. What kind of Strategy you used and how to improve the time pacing.

Thankyou.

­Hi jamsss,
I understand the your plight with the DI section. Honestly it is the section which tests you on both verbal as well as quant skills, also this is a section which is closest to the real world analytics problems and hence is a great addition by GMAT to remain relevant to the business schools.
 1)  First of all you must be well versed with all the concepts of quant as well as verbal because DI questions will need you to utilize you skills from these sections. Also be familiar with all types of graphs and charts. 
 2)  Even after doing good in both quant and verbal, DI questions at first may seem alien to you. For some time you will take much more time than stipulated to solve every question as even interpreting the question and understanding what is being asked is a challenge. Dont panic, practice these questions untimed and try to understand the concept being tested and the best approach to tackle that question.
 3)  If possible purchase the question bank provided by GMAC as these questions are really tough to mimic and also the interface provided at other sources is not that friendly at times. 
 4)  Dont waste official questions and after solving each and every question go through the official explanation and if required search for the solution at GMATClub, this will provide you with alternative approaches to solve the same question. Give time to each question.
 5)  Be really thorough with the Statistics part of Quant. A big chunk of the DI section is based on the Statistics.
 6)  Slowly and steadily you will become familiar with the question stems and you will take less time to interpret the question. The more you will practice, the better you will become.
 7)  Choose your battle wisely. On the test day, there will be questions which will seem really tough to understand, dont waste your time in such questions which have a very low probability to yield positive result.
 8)  DI as a section is tough for most of the test takers and hence to gain a high percentile you dont need to answer every question correctly.

Like many of us, I struggled with the DI section in the begining but with more practice I became familiar with the DI section like the other sections. To be honest, all of us have devoted much more time to the Quant and the Verbal sections of the test in comparison to the DI section. Therefore, it is unfair to blame the DI section for being extra tough (which I did). I am sanguine that with the correct approach and ample practice you will gain the needed proficiency in the DI section as well.
In case you want to ask anything else, please feel free to ask.
Thanks­
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Re: GMAT FE 705 : STORY OF PERSEVERENCE AND PERSISTENCE [#permalink]
­Hi Mukul, congratulations for your achievement. Thanks for sharing your insights, experience, planning and strategy. This will definitely going to help all those who are preparing for GMAT. All the best for your future endeavours.
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