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# GMAT Prep advice for a 39 year old person!

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Intern
Joined: 30 Jun 2018
Posts: 11

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30 Jun 2018, 23:45
2
I am currently 39 years old and have forgotten a lot of Math formulas/tricks & English Grammar. However I have registered for the exam and I have only 2 months in hand.

I have following questions:-

1) I had studied the basic Math and English grammar long long ago, almost 20-25 years ago. From the very little I have come to know that GMAT is a reasoning test. But I have forgotten almost everything which I had learnt in school days. How can I overcome this disadvantage?

2) As I said, I have registered for the exam and I have only 2 months in hand. Is this time frame sufficient to score a 770+? Am I being over ambitious or a 770+ can be a possibility with a two months prep and my background?

3) Should I give a mock exam directly of should I prepare for first 15 days and get a feel of the question types and then give my first mock? Since I am aiming a 770+ and I have forgotten the basics of Maths & English, I don't want to get completely demoralized by getting a low score in a mock test.

4) How many questions one should attempt on daily basis to gain expertise in terms of content, timing & accuracy?

I am a person who has been good in self study. I can study for 5-6 hours a day over two months. I want to be a 99 percentiler! Some insight from experts would be really helpful.
Senior PS Moderator
Joined: 26 Feb 2016
Posts: 3325
Location: India
GPA: 3.12

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01 Jul 2018, 00:58
1
Hi upgmat

Welcome to GMATClub!

Since you are beginning your preparation after around 20 years, I think you should
do the basics before you take a test. But the idea is not to spend a lot of time doing
that. The Manhattan Strategy guides are a good resource for the basic concepts that
are needed to crack the GMAT. You wouldn't want to jump into questions before you
are reasonably comfortable with the concepts.

To tell if you could score a 770 with just 2 months of preparation without knowing the
diagnostic score is impossible. So, I would say work on the Manhattan Strategy guides
for a couple of weeks, take a GMATPrep mock(2 free mocks available on mba.com) and
then report with your scores to understand how much time it would take.

1. https://gmatclub.com/forum/ultimate-gma ... 44512.html
2. https://gmatclub.com/forum/guide-to-rea ... 21112.html
3. https://gmatclub.com/forum/gmat-study-plan-217827.html

The first link helps in understanding Quant concepts, the second link contains the basics
of Reading Comprehension and the various question types, and the third and final link
contains a basic study plan.

Hope this helps you!
_________________

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Joined: 04 Dec 2002
Posts: 16976
Location: United States (WA)
GMAT 1: 750 Q49 V42
GPA: 3.5

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01 Jul 2018, 10:34
1
Welcome to GMAT Club!

Why do you need such high GMAT score at this stage of your life/career? Many programs only recruit sub 35-applicants to the competitive FT programs and PT/EMBA programs don't usually need a score higher than 700, and many even waive the GMAT requirement. Just make sure you really do need that high of a GMAT score...

Studying for GMAT at 35+ is a tricky business since as you mentioned, it's been a while. I recently was doing math with my son and despite staying fresh with GMAT Club, I can admit, I also forgot some things such as how to explain long division to a person. Anyway, it will take some time to refresh the basics basics. I would recommend getting the MGMAT Math foundations and MGMAT Verbal Foundations books. Your age can also be on the positive side for you - you have a lot more experience getting things done and a lot more failures than most 25-year-olds so take advantage of that!

As to studying for 5-6 hours. That may not be productive. You want to spend 1-2 productive hours and then take a break and spend perhaps another 1 hour. Other time won't be productive and would be best used for some low-level practice such as reading, or something else that does not require active brain power. I improved 200+ points in 3 months and i studied only about 1-2 hours per day but it was very intensive studying in the morning and then throughout the day I would be brushing up rules, check lists, words, vocab, etc while on the subway or taking a coffee break at work.

P.S. You want to take a practice test NOW so you know how you are doing. You don't know how much or little you need to study, so you need to know how long of a journey you are looking at.

Good Luck!
_________________

Founder of GMAT Club

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EMPOWERgmat Instructor
Status: GMAT Assassin/Co-Founder
Affiliations: EMPOWERgmat
Joined: 19 Dec 2014
Posts: 13058
Location: United States (CA)
GMAT 1: 800 Q51 V49
GRE 1: Q170 V170

### Show Tags

01 Jul 2018, 11:11
1
Hi upgmat,

Since it sounds like you're just beginning your studies, then it would be a good idea to take a FULL-LENGTH practice CAT Test; you can take 2 for free at www.mba.com (and they come with some additional practice materials). If you want to do a little studying first, so that you can familiarize yourself with the basic content and question types, then that's okay - but you shouldn't wait too long to take that initial CAT. That score will give us a good sense of your natural strengths and weaknesses and will help provide a basis for comparison as you continue to study. A FULL CAT takes about 3.5 hours to complete, so make sure that you've set aside enough time to take it in one sitting. Once you have those scores, you should report back here and we can come up with a study plan.

Many Test Takers spend 3 months (or more) of consistent study time before they hit their 'peak' scores, so if your schedule is limited to just 2 months, then there might be a limit to how high you can Score in that time.

I'd like to know a bit more about your timeline and goals:
1) Do you have an Official Test Date scheduled yet (and if so, then when is it?)?
2) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
3) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

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

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Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

# Rich Cohen

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Admitted - Which School Forum Moderator
Joined: 21 Mar 2018
Posts: 287
Concentration: Finance

### Show Tags

02 Jul 2018, 00:05
1
upgmat wrote:
I am currently 39 years old and have forgotten a lot of Math formulas/tricks & English Grammar. However I have registered for the exam and I have only 2 months in hand.

I have following questions:-

1) I had studied the basic Math and English grammar long long ago, almost 20-25 years ago. From the very little I have come to know that GMAT is a reasoning test. But I have forgotten almost everything which I had learnt in school days. How can I overcome this disadvantage?

2) As I said, I have registered for the exam and I have only 2 months in hand. Is this time frame sufficient to score a 770+? Am I being over ambitious or a 770+ can be a possibility with a two months prep and my background?

3) Should I give a mock exam directly of should I prepare for first 15 days and get a feel of the question types and then give my first mock? Since I am aiming a 770+ and I have forgotten the basics of Maths & English, I don't want to get completely demoralized by getting a low score in a mock test.

4) How many questions one should attempt on daily basis to gain expertise in terms of content, timing & accuracy?

I am a person who has been good in self study. I can study for 5-6 hours a day over two months. I want to be a 99 percentiler! Some insight from experts would be really helpful.

Hi upgmat

Welcome to the land of GMAT prep

Fact that you are 39 old, doesn't disqualify for anything or work as your disadvantage, except that you need to refresh some basic concepts, that you forgot because you have being out of school for some time.

2 Months can be enough.

1. That isn't special disadvantage, it is quite common for almost all GMAT takers, except for recent graduates.

You will catch up and refresh in your prep, for every concepts and theories you need to know, usually in math.

2. It is possible.

However you are overly ambitious, and you would been even if you had 6 months allowed for prep.

That is true, not because of the time frame, but because 770+ is quite premium score.

That being said, overly ambitious is actually a good thing with one caveat, since you are willing to work hard, just be prepared mentally that is not easy and not common to score that high.

Also, you don't need 770+ score to get admitted even at best schools in the world, around 750 is more than enough, so that are good news.

3. Yes, you should take mock ASAP to see where you stand, and if you think you need that psychological trick, work on question for several days before you take it, but no more than week.

It is ok to have low score at beginning of the prep, actually you should expect that and laugh about it.

That low start score is just screening of your current state, where you should invest more time, where are your current weakness etc. and it means nothing beside that.

Really nothing.

No matter how low it would be, you can score your dream goal after prep and you will be proud of the difference.

So low score actually should motivate you and inspire, since you can boost that more easily than somebody who is not that rusty in terms of foundations, recent graduate for instance.

You should also take mocks every two weeks to see how you progress and where to invest extra focus.

4. 25-50 questions per verbal and quant are enough per day.

Or per section you can go like, RC 5-10, CR 10, SC 10 and for quant like PS 10-15 and DS 10-15.

If you currently work then half of that is ok, since you don't have all day to devote to prep, however if you can then this should be measure if you want intense 2 months prep that would reflect on your final score.

This 5-6h that you mentioned per day for study should be enough.

For 99 percentile, go for best prep materials on market, especially if money is not issue for you, then invest only in the best.

If you can afford online course, that would be very beneficial in your case, they will guide you, give you all videos and lessons you need and devise your study plan for two moths.

You will also get mock tests that you need, with prep company you choose.

Best ones are Manhattan, Veritas and Target test Prep, but read here in GMAT Club reviews and choose based on your preference.

You can take trial to see if it fits you.

Hope this helps, happy prep !
_________________

Target Test Prep Representative
Status: Founder & CEO
Affiliations: Target Test Prep
Joined: 14 Oct 2015
Posts: 4278
Location: United States (CA)

### Show Tags

03 Jul 2018, 16:48
1
You ask many great questions; however, I agree that you should take an MBA.com practice exam so that we can provide you with the best possible advice. Could you please familiarize yourself with the GMAT exam and then take an MBA.com practice exam. The results of that exam will give you a good idea of what to expect on the GMAT as well as a baseline GMAT score.

Once you get that score, please report back with your breakdown and we can provide some tailored advice.
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Founder and CEO

GMAT Quant Self-Study Course
500+ lessons 3000+ practice problems 800+ HD solutions

Intern
Joined: 30 Jun 2018
Posts: 11

### Show Tags

Updated on: 15 Jul 2018, 01:05
Hi pushpitkc bb EMPOWERgmatRichC billionaire ScottTargetTestPrep

Thank you for taking the time out and guiding me. I have made a note of your points. Your help and guidance is much appreciated.

Thanking you once again!!

Originally posted by upgmat on 15 Jul 2018, 00:52.
Last edited by upgmat on 15 Jul 2018, 01:05, edited 1 time in total.
Intern
Joined: 30 Jun 2018
Posts: 11

### Show Tags

15 Jul 2018, 00:55
I scored a 540 in my first mock.

I managed to revise few concepts during the past two weeks. I solved the Quant & verbal OG 2018. I am planning to study 3-4 hours daily. I have succeeded doing this from past two weeks.

I gave my first mock yesterday morning. Around same time slot which have registered for the real exam on 1st sept, i.e. 10: AM (I started around 10:20 AM)

My performance was pathetic. I scored a V18. I was screwed up with my first RC. I just did not connect with it. I spent too much time on it. Subsequently I ran out of time & had to guess on last 8-10 questions. The break up is as follows:-

Attachment:

2018-07-15_13-13-10.png [ 4.28 KiB | Viewed 356 times ]

My performance on CR was ok. As you can see the performance in RC and SC is not worth mentioning further. The figures speak for themselves that I need to improve on accuracy and timing. I have decided to do 20 SC questions daily from today and in a months time I should have completed 600 questions. I will solve 2-3 RC passages daily for a month and lets see how it goes?

My quant score was Q47. (PS - 6 incorrect: DS-7 incorrect ; total 13 incorrect). When I reviewed I could have got 6 of this 13 questions correct if I had been more careful. For others I think I am lagging behind in understanding of concepts and will have to improve in the coming few weeks by doing a thorough conceptual review. I must add that in the past two weeks I had more time on Quant, revising basic formulas & concepts, than in Verbal. But now I will spend more time doing Verbal, specially SC & RC.

I got 3 on IR. Just was feeling too bad after Verbal and less motivated. But I have realised that I will have to focus on IR too.

AWA was ok. Tried to do a decent job. I want to get the essay reviewed I am unable to see my submission.

I also wanted to review my timing for each question of this mock but I am unable to find these details? Are these details available?

Yes, without thinking & before I gave a mock, I had registered to give the exam on 1st Sept 2018, 10:00 AM slot but not feeling confident after seeing yesterdays performance that I will be able to crack 760+ in one and a half months.
I am planning to apply during December-2018-Feb 2019 admission deadlines (Aiming to get into research masters with full scholarship & living stipend into top programs)

Please let me know if you realize any gaps in my understanding.
Intern
Joined: 30 Jun 2018
Posts: 11

### Show Tags

15 Jul 2018, 01:03
bb wrote:
Welcome to GMAT Club!

Why do you need such high GMAT score at this stage of your life/career? Many programs only recruit sub 35-applicants to the competitive FT programs and PT/EMBA programs don't usually need a score higher than 700, and many even waive the GMAT requirement. Just make sure you really do need that high of a GMAT score...

Studying for GMAT at 35+ is a tricky business since as you mentioned, it's been a while. I recently was doing math with my son and despite staying fresh with GMAT Club, I can admit, I also forgot some things such as how to explain long division to a person. Anyway, it will take some time to refresh the basics basics. I would recommend getting the MGMAT Math foundations and MGMAT Verbal Foundations books. Your age can also be on the positive side for you - you have a lot more experience getting things done and a lot more failures than most 25-year-olds so take advantage of that!

As to studying for 5-6 hours. That may not be productive. You want to spend 1-2 productive hours and then take a break and spend perhaps another 1 hour. Other time won't be productive and would be best used for some low-level practice such as reading, or something else that does not require active brain power. I improved 200+ points in 3 months and i studied only about 1-2 hours per day but it was very intensive studying in the morning and then throughout the day I would be brushing up rules, check lists, words, vocab, etc while on the subway or taking a coffee break at work.

P.S. You want to take a practice test NOW so you know how you are doing. You don't know how much or little you need to study, so you need to know how long of a journey you are looking at.

Good Luck!

Thanks bb - I am aiming to get into research masters (top programs) with full scholarship & living stipend. Standout application packet would require a standout score!! But I guess I am far away from my goal. But I think I will give my best shot at it and hope for the best!!

I have shared my first practice test results for every ones comments. I also need to improve by 200+ points to reach to my goal. Congratulations on having a wonderful score and thank you for starting GMATCLUB!!
Founder
Joined: 04 Dec 2002
Posts: 16976
Location: United States (WA)
GMAT 1: 750 Q49 V42
GPA: 3.5

### Show Tags

15 Jul 2018, 08:11
540 is a great start for your level of being out of college and high school. 540!is actually slightly above average.

It is possible to improve 200 points but it takes a lot of commitment. It will be something only 1-2% will achieve. That should give you an idea of commitment and pursuit it will take.

Since most of your weakness is in Verbal, it tends to be trickier to improve if you are not a native speaker.

Good luck!

Posted from my mobile device
_________________

Founder of GMAT Club

Just starting out with GMAT? Start here...
OG2019 Directory is here!
Want to know application stats & Profiles from last year? Check the Decision Tracker

Co-author of the GMAT Club tests

EMPOWERgmat Instructor
Status: GMAT Assassin/Co-Founder
Affiliations: EMPOWERgmat
Joined: 19 Dec 2014
Posts: 13058
Location: United States (CA)
GMAT 1: 800 Q51 V49
GRE 1: Q170 V170

### Show Tags

15 Jul 2018, 18:49
Hi upgmat,

To start, a 540 is a solid initial CAT Score (the average Score on the Official GMAT hovers around 540-550 most years).

Since you're interested in a rather specific type of Scholarship/Grant, you'll want to learn as much about those potential opportunities as possible (there will likely be a number of different 'conditions' that must be met - far more than just a high GMAT Score). In addition, if that Scholarship is the specific result that you're trying to get to, then you have to allow yourself the time to learn the necessary content and Tactics - and properly practice them - so that you can be in position to earn that Score when you take the Official GMAT.

With a September 1st Test Date, you have less than 7 weeks of potential study time, but you will likely need at least another 3 months of consistent, guided study to hit 760+. While you don't have to reschedule your Exam just yet, you will almost certainly have to consider doing so (or you can plan to take the GMAT more than once). You would likely find it beneficial to invest in a GMAT Course of some type (either Guided Self-Study or instructor-led), so you should plan to look into the available options.

1) You didn't mention it earlier, but what Schools do you plan to apply to?

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

760+: Learn What GMAT Assassins Do to Score at the Highest Levels
Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

# Rich Cohen

Co-Founder & GMAT Assassin

Special Offer: Save \$75 + GMAT Club Tests Free
Official GMAT Exam Packs + 70 Pt. Improvement Guarantee
www.empowergmat.com/

*****Select EMPOWERgmat Courses now include ALL 6 Official GMAC CATs!*****

Re: GMAT Prep advice for a 39 year old person! &nbs [#permalink] 15 Jul 2018, 18:49
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# GMAT Prep advice for a 39 year old person!

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