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GMAT Score 600 - Q40 V32 - really below expectations...need advice!

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Joined: 12 Jan 2017
Posts: 5
GMAT 1: 600 Q40 V32
GMAT Score 600 - Q40 V32 - really below expectations...need advice!  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Jul 2017, 06:46
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Hi all,
I took the GMAT exam this Friday and to my surprise, got a low score (600 - Q40, V32). I have been studying since January this year for the test and completed 12 CATs (Veritas, Kaplan, LBS Full Test, GMATPrep). My lowest score on GMATPrep was 630 (Q38, V37) and my highest was 710 on Monday (Q47, V40), the same week I took the GMAT exam. Below will provide some background information:

Books and Materials Used (self-study):
-Magoosh GMAT course and exercises (completed over 1000 and retook incorrect ones)
-OG 2017 and Verbal and Quantitative OG Extra Pratice Books 2017 (completed all exercises)
-Powerscore for SC and CR (completed all exercises)
-Kaplan 800+ for Strategy
-GMATPrep Software for Practice Exercises

Background information (education, employment, etc.):
My bachelor is in International Relations and I have completed a Certificate in Business Administration
My work experience is in Human Resources and I use English every day in my job activities, as I deal with international employees moving around the globe to work for the company. I am responsible for the international transfers for the Americas region.

Length of study: 6 months

General strategy:
2h/day of study, around 5h/weekend, started doing the CATs in June and took the GMAT in July
Followed the GMAT study plan from Magoosh for Beginners and then used the additional books and practice exercises

Test experience:
Selected the standard GMAT order; started with AWA, IR and then QUANT, VERBAL. One important note that I wish I had prepared better was that during my CAT practices, I never wrote the AWA. I would just read and skip to IR and the rest of the test. I think this affected my performance on the real GMAT test, as I started with AWA and as did not practice much of it, I could not remember the structure to follow and got nervous as the minutes went by. I don´t know my score yet, but I can say that I have neglected the preparation for this part as most schools focus more on the Quant and Verbal, but I think it took me off balance as I felt I did not prepare enough. I completed the AWA and then moved on to IR. I had practiced IR and completed this section during the GMATPrep exams (4 in total) that I took. I started well, but then for the last two questions I had only 3 minutes left and had to choose an answer without completing the calculation. I took the break, went to the bathroom, ate some nuts and dried fruit and then started the second part of the exam. My first quant question I totally blanked and it was not hard, but I could not come to the calculation. As time was passing, I tried it and moved on. However, for sure this influenced my confidence, as I was not able to complete the first question. I felt I did not come to the hard and very hard questions as the ones I did during my preparation, some questions were easy, but I think I could not recover from a weak start. Then I finished the QUANT, could complete all questions and took the break. The Verbal section was not hard, I felt lucky that none of my RC texts were from biology or history, with difficult concepts. All of them were from business context and historical facts that happened in economy. SC and CR did not seem that hard as well, I thought I was doing well and could get a score of at least V35 or above. It really surprised me to see V32 on the screen.

PS/NOTES: The date I selected for the exam (Friday, 8 am) was unfortunate and wish I had chosen another day. During the past 3 weeks and on the exam week, I had to work over my schedule almost every day, as two of my colleagues took holidays during this period. The first took 15 days and I had to be the backup, then we had a week with the full team and the other one went on holidays on the week of the exam. I was in a very intense rhythm, waking up at 6 am to study, working from 9am to 8pm or more, then coming back home and studying more. On weekends, I would take two practice exams and study after the exam, doing practice exercises. Also during these past weeks, I stopped my exercise routine (I used to run twice a week with a coach and then go to the gym 3-times a week), so I was not really relieving the stress.

I really need some advice on how to move on with my studies and raise my test score. I plan to retake the test on late September to be able to apply for R2 of the European schools.

Thank you for the support!
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Joined: 12 Oct 2015
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Location: Canada
Concentration: Leadership, Accounting
GMAT 1: 700 Q47 V39
GPA: 3
WE: Accounting (Accounting)
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Re: GMAT Score 600 - Q40 V32 - really below expectations...need advice!  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Jul 2017, 19:29
Sorry to hear that buddy. From what you say there are few factors that affected your performance so adversly.
1) Skipping AWA & IR was not a good idea. Spend atleast couple of weeks practising both these sections and next time choose a format with AWA & IR at the end.....
2) 8:00 am perhaps was not the best time, next attempt try later time in the day
3) Don't work too much in the last week or so of the exam. Ask for a few days off or talk to your work explain you need light workload for one week....

As a side note, get your ESR and have a look to see what went wrong and compare with your GMATprep mock exams. See what area had the biggest drop... Then devise a plan on how to improve on the areas with the biggest drop.

Good luck
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Re: GMAT Score 600 - Q40 V32 - really below expectations...need advice!   [#permalink] 16 Jul 2017, 19:29
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