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GMAT Prep Software Analysis and What If Scenarios

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New post 15 Oct 2015, 02:13
Bunuel wrote:

GMAT Prep Software Analysis and What If Scenarios

We will try to run different scenarios with GMAT Prep Software to find out whether various myth about scoring algorithm are legit.

Reports from the Real GMAT:

Added a few points to my verbal score: 600-to-740-all-about-timing-and-fundamentals-147029.html


1. What is the importance of the first 10 questions?

Experiment: We will try to disprove the myth the way OG/GMAC positions it: the first 10 questions are not critical
Methodology: we will attempt the worst case scenario and will answer the first 10 questions incorrectly (not guess but incorrectly); then we will attempt to answer the remaining 27 questions correctly (not guess)
Results: Q38 (48th percentile - ouch) with only 10 wrong answers
Analysis: obviously something is not right with the myth about the first 10 questions. They appear to be very important on the Quant. If you miss the first 10 (probably not a very realistic scenario for most) you have no way of climbing out of the hole - almost all questions that were offered to me were generally easy/medium difficulty. Let's try a different scenario next to check this myth (we'll miss the last 10 questions). Also interesting to note, when simulated in the previous GMAT Prep version, this scenario resulted in Q41 (so there have been changes in the scoring algorithms of the GMAT Prep).
Total Score: every question in the verbal section was answered as "E" and it resulted in the final score of V8, 1st percentile. Total score: 380 - 10th percentile
Questions: 20PS and 17 DS. Also, see what question topics were encountered in this scenario:




2. What is the importance of the last 10 questions?

Experiment: We will try to analyze the importance of the last 10 questions and if it equals the important of the first 10
Methodology: we will attempt the worst case scenario and will answer the first 27 Q questions correctly and then will answer the remaining 10 questions incorrectly (not guess but incorrectly).
Results: Q50, 92nd percentile - Nicely done though not great. I think it is possible to get Q51 with 10 incorrect ones.
Analysis: The questions were much harder this time with some new topics/types appearing on the test such as coordinate geometry DS. Conclusion: the last 10 don't count as much as the first 10. This myth is True (as long as you can get the first 27 right). Please note that I have not guessed the last 10 but rather answered them incorrectly (which means I still had to solve those questions too). If you are guessing, you will most likely get a higher score.
Total Score: every question in the verbal section was answered as "E" (again) and it resulted in the final score of V8, 1st percentile. Total score: 470 (90 points higher than when we missed the first 10 questions)
Questions: 20PS and 17 DS. Also, see what question topics were encountered in this scenario:




Thank you so much for this research Bunuel! It was very informative. The conclusion you reached about the importance of the first/last 10 questions is not quite correct however. The scoring algorithm takes into account the difficulty of the questions. In missing the first 10, the tester has missed very easy questions (which has dragged the algorithm's score estimate down) and finished by getting easy, medium, and some difficult questions correct. Getting the first 27 correct and missing the last 10 means getting very difficult questions correct, then missing mostly difficult questions.

Another experiment would be to categorize the difficulty level of the questions and experiment with the impact getting easy/difficult questions correct/incorrect.
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Re: GMAT Prep Software Analysis and What If Scenarios  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Nov 2015, 10:42
the difference between GMATPrep and real GMAT is that on real GMAT there are experimental questions, which do not count while calculating the sub score.

Thus, you can try guessing, but if you guess the questions that are experimental, your score will be higher, but if you guess only the questions that do count...the score will get very low..
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New post 20 Nov 2015, 10:57
Took GMATprep Test 3 a few days ago and received a 40 on Verbal (12 questions incorrect) (2 of them in the 1st 10 questions)

Just took Prep 4 and received a V36 (Only 6 questions incorrect)! However, I answered 4 of the first 10 questions incorrectly. After this I do not think I received any questions that were all that challenging.

Therefore there has to be something to the 1st 10 questions myth.

Anyone else see results so skewed?
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New post 20 Nov 2015, 11:17
allgeier44 wrote:
Took GMATprep Test 3 a few days ago and received a 40 on Verbal (12 questions incorrect) (2 of them in the 1st 10 questions)

Just took Prep 4 and received a V36 (Only 6 questions incorrect)! However, I answered 4 of the first 10 questions incorrectly. After this I do not think I received any questions that were all that challenging.

Therefore there has to be something to the 1st 10 questions myth.

Anyone else see results so skewed?



Thank you for sharing - yes, absolutely have noticed this a number of times taking the GMAT Prep. It does not seem to be a Myth at all.
I think the way that GMAC should explain the first 10 question myth should be different. I think their take should be that - It is impossible to to "trick" or "beat" the test by acing the first 10 questions and then do a poor job on the rest. However, they should also mention that if you screw up the first 10, it is your funeral. At the same time, I can see how they may be reluctant to talk about the statement #2 (screwing up the first 10) without immediately everybody jumping to the conclusion that they MUST do the first 10 right.

The bottom line is that you do need to get as many HARD questions right as possible and the only way to get to them is to do well on the first 10 questions because as you have noticed, you did not get any hard challenging questions down the road after stumbling on a few in the first 10.

Best Regards,
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New post 25 Nov 2015, 22:53
Hi BB, Bunuel:

Do we know yet whats the most like answer choice in PS and DS separately?

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New post 26 Nov 2015, 05:36
Sorry I think I didnt word my question properly. What I meant to ask was- as per the following Quant Guessing Strategy Table C appeared most frequently as the correct answer on quant section including both PS and DS questions. Do you know which answer choice appeared most frequently on PS and which one on DS? Thanks

















Quant Guessing Strategy
Test # Marked Choice Correct Score
1 Marked All Bs 2 6
2 Marked All Bs 4 6
3 Marked All As 7 6
4 Marked All Es 7 6
5 Marked All Ds 7 6
6 Marked All Cs 9 6
7 Marked All Cs 9 6
8 Marked All Cs 10 6
9 Marked All Ds 10 6
10 Marked All Cs 11 6
11 Marked All Cs 13 9
12 Marked All Bs 5 6
13 Marked All Ds 9 6
14 Marked All Ds 7 6
15 Marked All Cs 10 7


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New post 05 Dec 2015, 04:37
Hi Everyone,

I have just taken two GMAT Prep tests and I have a question regarding the same. Has anyone else noticed a change in the number of questions from SC, RC and CR?

In each of my tests, I received 17 questions from SC, 13 from RC and just 11 from CR, whereas, while I was preparing for the GMAT last year, the number of questions from SC and CR were roughly 14 each and the same for RC was around 13.

If I am not wrong, the question from each of these area are supposed to be more/less equal. Can someone please throw some light on this?
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New post 05 Dec 2015, 13:35
NightFury15 wrote:
Hi Everyone,

I have just taken two GMAT Prep tests and I have a question regarding the same. Has anyone else noticed a change in the number of questions from SC, RC and CR?

In each of my tests, I received 17 questions from SC, 13 from RC and just 11 from CR, whereas, while I was preparing for the GMAT last year, the number of questions from SC and CR were roughly 14 each and the same for RC was around 13.

If I am not wrong, the question from each of these area are supposed to be more/less equal. Can someone please throw some light on this?


Hi,
The number of questions from each sub-section -PS/DS/CR/RC/SC is not fixed. Each test-taker will get a slight variation in the number of questions from each sub-section and placement of these questions within the test. However, the range of number of questions usually is as follows :
Q:PS 20-22 questions
Q:DS 15 to 17questions
V:SC 15 to 17 questions
V:RC 12 to 14 questions
V:CR 11 to 14 questions
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New post 23 Jan 2016, 11:11
Vercules wrote:

GMAT Prep Software Analysis and What If Scenarios -- VERBAL



1) What if you get all the LAST 11 questions incorrect ?



Testing Scenario:

All the last 11 questions incorrect and others correct.

Result:

V38 ( 83 percentile, not bad after getting 11 questions incorrect in a row)

Analysis:

The 11 incorrect questions at the end of the Verbal section did not bring the score down greatly. It is unlikely that someone after attempting first 30 correctly would go so wrong in the last 11. The results show that the momentum gained by the first 30 questions is not significantly beaten by the last 11.

Conclusion:

Can we conclude that one should not worry about the last 11 questions, probably not. But, a few glitches at the end of the test would not destroy your hopes of getting a good score. This will be more clear from the results below.

2) What if you get some of the MID 11 questions (I took 11 to 20) incorrect ?



Testing Scenario:

The MIDWAY 11 questions (11 to 20) incorrect and others correct.

Result:

Again V38 ( 83 percentile, once again, not bad after getting 11 questions incorrect in a row)

Analysis:

The 11 incorrect questions at the mid gave the same results as the previous experiment. The results show that the momentum lost by the mid 11 questions could be gained by answering remaining questions correctly.

Conclusion:

Again can we conclude that one should not worry about the mid 11 questions, probably not. But, the results show that you should not loose hope if you got a few questions incorrect somewhere in the midway.

3) What if you get all the FIRST 11 questions incorrect ?



Testing Scenario:

All the first 11 questions incorrect and others correct.

Result:

V22 ( 27 percentile, not a good score in verbal. I was surprised by this result)

Analysis:

The first 11 questions literally spoiled the score. Furthermore, even the successful attempts of remaining questions could not recover from the damage done by the first 11 questions.

Conclusion:

Once again can we conclude that one should worry about the first 11 questions, definitely yes. The results show that first 11 are very important to your score. We considered an extreme scenario here; it is highly unlikely that someone would perform this way during the test. Therefore I considered somewhat realistic scenarios in the next experiments.

4) What if you get all the LAST 6 questions incorrect ?



Testing Scenario:

All the last 6 questions incorrect and others correct.

Result:

V44 ( 97 percentile, an awesome score)

Analysis:

The last 6 incorrect questions were insignificant in bringing down the score.

Conclusion:

We can confidently say that if you are able to solve first 35 questions correctly, you have reached the 94+ percentile mark. Even if something bad happens in the last 6 questions, you will still be happy to see your score.

5) What if you get all the MID 6 questions(21 to 26) incorrect ?



Testing Scenario:

All the MID 6 questions(21 to 26) incorrect and others correct.

Result:

V44 ( 97 percentile, wow again the same awesome score)

Analysis:

With the same results, the middle 6 incorrect questions were insignificant in bringing down the score. Moreover, the placement of these 6 incorrect questions seems to have no effect on the overall score.

Conclusion:

We can say that if you are able to solve first 35 questions correctly and the other middle 6 questions incorrectly, you have reached the 94+ percentile mark. Can we be sure about the fact that getting 35 questions correct in Verbal would give you a score of around V44 no matter what; the answer is no. The following experiments will prove why.

6) What if you get all the FIRST 6 questions incorrect ?



Testing Scenario:

All the FIRST 6 questions incorrect and others correct.

Result:

V33 ( 66 percentile, a good score, but definitely not an awesome score)

Analysis:

Getting first 6 questions incorrect is more realistic than getting the first 11 incorrect. As compared to the last two results the first 6 question greatly damaged the overall verbal score.

Conclusion:

The first incorrect 6 questions can destroy someones' hope of reaching even the 70+ percentile mark in verbal, no matter how well he/ she performs on the remaining questions. The apparent conclusion is that one should not take the initial questions lightly.


7) What if you get EQUALLY SPACED 7 questions incorrect ?



Testing Scenario:

7 EQUALLY SPACED questions incorrect with a gap of 5 correct questions in-between. Therefore, the incorrect questions are 1, 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, 41, the rest are correct.

Result:

V42 ( 96 percentile, My actual GMAT score)

Analysis:

A good score indeed, even after breaking the consistency after every 5 correct questions. One incorrect question between 10 correctly answered questions has not significantly lowered the overall score.

Conclusion:

The results are inline with our assumption that the more questions you solve consistently the higher your score. In testing scenarios 4 and 5 we got V44 where we solved 35 and 20 questions correct in a row respectively. In this test there was a small breaks in consistency, so we got a slightly lower score.

8) What if you get ALTERNATE questions incorrect/correct ?



Testing Scenario:

Alternate questions incorrect starting with first question incorrect. So, every odd question is incorrect and every even question is correct.

Result:

V16 ( 10 percentile)

Analysis:

This is a somewhat expected result. With around half questions incorrect and none correct in a row will in fact, result in a bad score. Some say that the first question that you receive is of medium difficulty level, a 50 percentile or a 500 level question. Moreover, if you get one question correct then incorrect probably you will maintain the level. The result was not a 50%ile score but a 10 %ile score.

Conclusion:

From the analysis we can conclude that alternate correct and incorrect question would gradually lower your percentile.

9 i) What if you get All SC questions incorrect: Test1 ?

I have conducted two tests to prove the point that SC is not individually adaptive and the location of SC question matters more than the number of SC questions that you got incorrect.

Testing Scenario:

All theSentence Correction questions incorrect anywhere in the test. In this iteration I got SC questions at following question numbers: 1, 4,6, 7, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 23, 24, 27, 29, 30, 31, 36, 41. 17 SC questions in total.

Result:

V25 ( 35 percentile)

9 ii) What if you get ALL SC questions incorrect: Test2 ?



Testing Scenario:

All theSentence Correction questions incorrect anywhere in the test. In this iteration I got SC questions at following question numbers: 6, 7, 8, 13, 19, 23, 24, 25, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33 ,40 ,41. 17 SC questions in total.

Result:

V35 ( 74 percentile)

Analysis:

In both the tests I got all the 17 SC questions incorrect, but the different in the two scores was huge. In the first started with an SC question, moreover 3 out of first six were SC.

Conclusion:

SC is not individually adaptive and where you got an SC question matters more than the number of SC questions that you got incorrect. So, initial SC questions (of any other initial questions) are really more important for your overall score.

10 i) What if you get All RC questions incorrect: Test1 ?

I have conducted two tests to prove the point that RC is not individually adaptive and the location of RC question matters more than the number of RC questions that you got incorrect.

Testing Scenario:

All theReading Comprehension questions incorrect anywhere in the test. In this iteration I got RC questions at following question numbers: 10-13, 16-18, 23-25, 33-35. 13 RC questions in total.

Result:

V36 ( 79 percentile)

10 ii) What if you get ALL RC questions incorrect: Test2 ?



Testing Scenario:

All theReading Comprehension questions incorrect anywhere in the test. In this iteration I got RC questions at following question numbers: 4-6, 13-15, 18-20, 33-36. 13 SC questions in total.

Result:

V33 ( 66 percentile)

Analysis:

In both the tests I got all the 13 RC questions incorrect, but the different in the two scores was not very significant good enough. In the first test I encountered the first RC passage at the 10th question, but in the second it came early at 4th. This could be one of the reasons for the score difference.

Conclusion:

like SC, RC is also not individually adaptive and again where you got an RC question matters more than the number of RC questions that you got incorrect. So, initial RC questions (of any other initial questions) are really more important for your overall score. By observing the results we can see that scenario 10 resulted in a better score overall than scenario 9. The possible reason for this observation could be that the number of SC questions (17) is greater than that of RC questions (13).

11) What if you marked the last answer choice, but did not click submit and confirm, and the allotted time for the section gets over?



Testing Scenario:

Answered 40 verbal questions and marked the last question and waited for the time to finish.

Result:

The result was a positive one, favoring of the test taker. The test will register your answer choice and will not reward you any penalty.

Analysis/ Conclusion:

As soon as you reach the last question it's better to mark one answer choice and then attempt the that question, so even if you are not able to determine the correct answer in time, the question would still be considered for your overall score and you will receive any penalty on your score.

Quant Guessing Strategy



Testing Scenarios:



Marked the same option in all the questions.

















Quant Guessing Strategy
Test # Marked Choice Correct Score
1 Marked All Bs 2 6
2 Marked All Bs 4 6
3 Marked All As 7 6
4 Marked All Es 7 6
5 Marked All Ds 7 6
6 Marked All Cs 9 6
7 Marked All Cs 9 6
8 Marked All Cs 10 6
9 Marked All Ds 10 6
10 Marked All Cs 11 6
11 Marked All Cs 13 9
12 Marked All Bs 5 6
13 Marked All Ds 9 6
14 Marked All Ds 7 6
15 Marked All Cs 10 7


Analysis/ Conclusion :



Results from 15 tests show that on average an Option 'C' carries a higher probability of being correct and option B carries the lowest. I tested 'C' option the 5 times after I saw 13 correct "flukes" in the quant section. I think the reason is the DS questions in which many answers may in fact be 'C'. Another conclusion that we can derive from our results is that if you guess all the answers you are likely to get a '0' percentile no matter what answer you mark. But if you have to guess one or two and you have no idea/ time for the question mark 'C'. After the next tests it seems that D is the next after 'C' while guessing in quant. In test 15 again C resulted in 10 correct questions and a score of 7. Once again marking all Cs resulted in more number of correct answers as compared to others.

I will be posting results from new test scenarios. If you have any other interesting suggestions please let me know, I'll be happy to run the test.



Thanks,

Vercules



Hi...this is truly a great work. Thanks
Did you try the scenario with:
1. Every 3rd question answered wrong (whether it is SC or CR or RC) 2. every 4th question answered wrong

Thanks in advance
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New post 28 Jan 2016, 13:23
I just did set of questions in the GMAT prep software. Trying to review the answers and the questions are completely out of order. I tried exiting and then restarting the app, then restarting my computer. To no avail. Has anyone else experienced this and know how to fix it? The only way for me to review the questions in order is to click "select" on each question, review it, then exit the screen and click the next one. These extra steps are a total time waster, so inefficient. Any help would be much appreciated
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New post 13 Mar 2016, 13:13
1
Hi

Something really weird happened. My quant level is 42-43 I would say. I attempted gmat prep 1 yesterday and I scored 36. However, just 24 hours later I took gmat prep 2 and I scored 47. And actually in my second attempt I did AWA and IR before quant. How is that possible?
The first time I missed 6/10 first questions and the second time only 3. Might that be the reason? The first time I missed 18 questions and the second time 16.
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New post 07 May 2016, 07:19
- what I read on several forum, blog, official articles and so on and so forth if in some extent on quant section (though not so much) the first questions are crucial BUT you "have a margin of maneuver" (of course after that there are no rooms for errors or at least few errors AFTER middle end part)

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New post 12 May 2016, 09:21
Bunuel

With recent updates to the gmat prep software, do you think the time is ripe for another what if analysis with the latest version of the software?

Thanks
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New post 25 May 2016, 22:09
1
Some new scenarios have been posted here:
enhanced-score-report-analysis-what-if-scenarios-218768.html
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New post 22 Jun 2016, 08:33
Hello guys,

could you help me to understand why the score is so low in verbal section?

gmac test 2
wrong : 1, 5 ,6, 10, 11,14, 15, 22, 24, 25, 29, 30,31, 36,37,38.
16 wrong
I got 25V.

I expected the score to be around 30V...


thanks you for help
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New post 08 Jul 2016, 01:28
1
I recently took exam 6 from EP2...

In verbal, only missed 4 questions (9,18,37,41) but got only V42...Is it possible that EP2 didn't have enough hard questions to try me for V43/44?

I feel exam 5 (from EP2) exhausted many hard questions...in exam 5 I got V41 even after missing as many as 12 questions (wrongs clustered in the middle and end)...

So probably the first exam from each pack is a better judge and more realistic database of questions...with enough hard arsenal...?
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New post 11 Jul 2016, 01:51
Hi guys

Thanks for the great analysis. I agree that the first 10 questions are quite critical, however my thoughts on the importance of first 10 questions have definitely changed a bit after my last GMAT prep.
I scored 48 in Quant with 7 incorrect answers. Question#s 15, 22, 27, 31, 32, 36, and 37 were incorrect. I was expecting a score of 50, however prep software scored me 48. I'm a little confused since then. Any thoughts?

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New post 11 Jul 2016, 05:56
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I suppose it matters a lot what exam pack you use. I think the default exam pack is much better at testing a candidate at his breaking point (as compared to the two paid packs).

I got V42 with 4 wrongs in exam 2 of EP2 and yesterday got V44 with 7 wrongs in the default exam pack (exam 1).
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New post 15 Jul 2016, 23:20
great job!thank you for all your hard work!
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Re: GMAT Prep Software Analysis and What If Scenarios &nbs [#permalink] 15 Jul 2016, 23:20

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