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help! - intensive study didn't help me at all

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Intern
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Joined: 24 Nov 2008
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help! - intensive study didn't help me at all [#permalink]

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New post 11 Dec 2008, 19:40
My first score was 540, and second was 590.
I didn't study much that time so I decided to study more to improve my score for the third try.
After intensive study (I studied at least 4 hrs daily, 8-9 hrs on weekends, and used spare time to improve vocab, too), I was confident I could raise my score.
However, I got 590 again! :shock: I was so shocked! Not a single point up!?
(BTW... only my AWA kept improving.. from 4.5, 5.0, and 5.5 this time)

Can anyone help me???? What was wrong with my study style?
By the way, I am not a native English speaker.

Let me share what I did:
Basics:
Studied OG 11 - at least 3 times thoroughly until I understood why I made mistakes.
Studied Kaplan CD over 3 times each
Studied Kaplan and Princeton Review books thoroughly and revisited the questions I missed
Went through PowerPrep (Practice 1 and 2) over and over
Practiced new full-length tests provided by manhattan review and other sites

Quant:
Learned the basics again by reading math books and internet sites
Used PowerPrep to go through questions until I found no new questions. I reviewed explanations for the questions I could not get right in the gmat club forum and other internet forum, and re-take the questions until I got them right.

Verbal:
Focused on SC by going through each question on OG and PowerPrep mainly.
Learned idioms, and grammar by getting information from OG, internet sites etc.
Also learned vocab using flashcards (almost 1000 words)
Tried to speed up reading by trying the speed-reading method (actually it worked because I could read faster than I used to)

I thought I did study the right way, so I don't know what to do more or differently.
I even feel I am the stupidest person in the world - because I could not improve a single point even after the intensive study...
Suggestions, advice or cheers for me???
:cry:

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Joined: 20 Apr 2008
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Schools: HBS Class of 2011
Re: help! - intensive study didn't help me at all [#permalink]

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New post 12 Dec 2008, 00:06
Can you post your score breakdown (Q/V) for each of the exams? This could help us figure out where your weaknesses are.

One thing that strikes me immediately is that you didn't mention GMATPrep or ManhattanGMAT. ManhattanGMAT has great guides for quant and verbal (especially quant if you are scoring below a 45). GMATPrep lets you take timed practice exams using "official" software that looks identical to the actual GMAT (level of difficulty is also very similar). I would suggest to use both of these sources.

Don't give up! Many people on these forums went from 400s/500s to high 600s/700s. Take a short break, hang out with friends/family, read what people on these forums are suggesting, and then hit the books!

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Re: help! - intensive study didn't help me at all [#permalink]

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New post 12 Dec 2008, 02:19
sorry to hear that, fmfm
I suggest u go for 4th, last, attempt.
But this time plz make sure that u r ready for the test. Indicators are GMAT tests under real condition ( essay,10 min break, Q,10min break, V).
I suggest u to read some expert advises on www.manhattangmat/forums about how to prepare. I found them essential. U can find some invaluable recs here too.

I noticed that the sources u used are limited: that's not enough. U should have seen as many and various examples as possible.
U should have practiced tests under real conditions and have taken mock tests on the same day, that u plan to write the actual test, every or every other week.

Go to http://www.manhattangmat.com/forums/general-questions-f9.html
Read some posts : few guys have the same problem as u do. I hope u will find it useful.
Don't blame urself u r definitely not "the stupidest person in the world". Some guys hit it in 1st try the others not.
Cheer up and try ur best to show that u, too, deserve a success.
Giving up is easy-everyone can do it but not all dare to try once again.

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Re: help! - intensive study didn't help me at all [#permalink]

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New post 12 Dec 2008, 06:02
Thank you foodstamp and UMB! :thanks

Sorry I think I didn't give you the correct info - I meant GMAT Prep by "PowerPrep" and Manhattan GMAT by "Manhattan Review."
So I did try those.

Especially the GMAT Prep - I took both practice one and two over and over, until I see no new questions.
I came to this forum to check each question I didn't get right, and re-took the practice exams.
I could get almost all the Quant questions right after several practices.

I am giving you the score in detail..
1st try - Q 42, V 25 (560)
2nd try - Q 44, V 27 (590)
3rd try - Q 46, V 25 (590)

I know my verbal sucks, I guess it is usual for non-native English speakers, so I tried to focus on Quant and SC to earn as many points as possible.

The GMAT Prep SC was almost perfect, so I think CR and RC are my weak areas.
I wanted to have 50 or 51 for Quant to raise my score, but I couldn't..

When I saw my unofficial score on the screen after the third test, I was so surprised to see the same score as the second one I almost laughed. I think the Pearson VUE personnel might have thought I got the high score because I was smiling though wryly.. :pc

So.. should I re-do the GMAT Prep and Manhattan GMAT?
I remembered almost all the Quant answers of GMAT Prep...

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Re: help! - intensive study didn't help me at all [#permalink]

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New post 12 Dec 2008, 06:16
fmfm wrote:
My first score was 540, and second was 590.
I didn't study much that time so I decided to study more to improve my score for the third try.
After intensive study (I studied at least 4 hrs daily, 8-9 hrs on weekends, and used spare time to improve vocab, too), I was confident I could raise my score.
However, I got 590 again! :shock: I was so shocked! Not a single point up!?
(BTW... only my AWA kept improving.. from 4.5, 5.0, and 5.5 this time)

Can anyone help me???? What was wrong with my study style?
By the way, I am not a native English speaker.

Let me share what I did:
Basics:
Studied OG 11 - at least 3 times thoroughly until I understood why I made mistakes.
Studied Kaplan CD over 3 times each
Studied Kaplan and Princeton Review books thoroughly and revisited the questions I missed
Went through PowerPrep (Practice 1 and 2) over and over
Practiced new full-length tests provided by manhattan review and other sites

Quant:
Learned the basics again by reading math books and internet sites
Used PowerPrep to go through questions until I found no new questions. I reviewed explanations for the questions I could not get right in the gmat club forum and other internet forum, and re-take the questions until I got them right.

Verbal:
Focused on SC by going through each question on OG and PowerPrep mainly.
Learned idioms, and grammar by getting information from OG, internet sites etc.
Also learned vocab using flashcards (almost 1000 words)
Tried to speed up reading by trying the speed-reading method (actually it worked because I could read faster than I used to)

I thought I did study the right way, so I don't know what to do more or differently.
I even feel I am the stupidest person in the world - because I could not improve a single point even after the intensive study...
Suggestions, advice or cheers for me???
:cry:


Sometimes the harder you try, the weaker you get. Something like quicksand..

I understand what you're going thru, coz my scores too were relatively the same. I was full of confidence to write the exam, but to my dismay I scored lower than you did!! So, I decided to take a break and analyse what went well and what went wrong.

I took a month off, just got back to life...drinking, movies, socialising etc etc. I learnt that even though I was prepared, I became nervous when I reached the centre. Panic mode. This was my weakness, and I decided to work on this.

Analyse yourself, see if its the nervousness or something else. Go though everything again, tough but its well worth it.

Also, if your serious about an MBA, give your GMAT again and again till your satisfied.

My 2 cents

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Re: help! - intensive study didn't help me at all [#permalink]

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New post 12 Dec 2008, 07:23
practice more on CR and RC. you think you can do better in SC but non-native english speakers as myself will have problems.

I haven't taken the test yet but verbal is also my big concern. So what I am trying to do is .. read manhattan SC book (repeat and repeat) but I still have tough times solving SC problems posted on this site. and I was thinking that CR and RC going to be even tougher but actually I am getting lot better with CR and RC so hoping to compensate there to get a good score in Verbal. I am reading Manhattan CR and RC. I know many people didn't recommend manhattan series for CR but I bought it and I actually learned a lot. Hoping to read the Power Prep CR as well ( I already bought it). But SC ... it is just mystery at times. So my bet is ... you can bank on CR and RC more (if you practice more, you get more)..

For the Quant section, I too think I can get good score :) will see what happens. Buy Gmat club challenges and practice them and see where you are making mistakes ...

as everyone said, ultimately it comes down to how you hold your nerves on the test day.

Try one more time. you desrve lot better score than what you are getting now. your hard work will pay-off. don't lose your heart.

my 2 cents..

Thanks,

Kudos [?]: 868 [0], given: 99

Re: help! - intensive study didn't help me at all   [#permalink] 12 Dec 2008, 07:23
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help! - intensive study didn't help me at all

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