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How much can lack of sleep really affect your score?

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How much can lack of sleep really affect your score?  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Jul 2017, 17:44
So a very strange thing happened in my recent GMAT attempt. The night before my exam, I went to bed at 11 pm but couldn't sleep till 1:30-2:00 am. My sleep was interrupted at 7 am from some noise outside my apartment, and unfortunately I couldn't sleep at all after that. My test was in the morning at 11 am so I got ready and headed to the test center. I tried doing a few Quant questions for warm up before the test. It felt a little weird while I was solving some simple quant questions- I felt like I wasn't able to do simple basic calculations. I ignored all that and tried to stay positive.

I opted for Q-V-IR-AWA order. As soon as quant started, again I started to see that I was having a really hard time doing simple questions. I literally couldn't focus at all and ended up skipping a LOT of questions. My final quant score was 45. I knew I screwed up my quant section but I still tried to remain focused on Verbal. Again I was having a hard time comprehending some really long RCs. As a result, I performed really bad in RC, which is my strength. I ordered ESR and I got a RC 27, with a V 31 and 620 (Q45,V31) overall score. Even in MGMAT CATS my lowest score was 660, so this is really disappointing.

Can lack of sleep really drop your score by more than a 100 points?
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Re: How much can lack of sleep really affect your score?  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jul 2017, 17:03
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Hi yt770,

To answer your immediate question: YES - a poor night's sleep could absolutely impact your performance to such a degree as to significantly decrease your overall score. The severity of the score drop will obviously depend on the individual, but there are a number of other factors that you also need to consider. First, how closely did your 'practice routine' match up with what you faced on Test Day? Did you take your CATs at the same time of day as your Official GMAT? Did you take them at home? Did you mimic a similar Test Facility environment? Did you do ANYTHING that wasn't realistic (pausing the CATs, taking longer breaks, retaking CATs that you had already taken, etc?)? If you weren't strict about how you took your practice CATs, then it's possible that you received a number of unrealistic, 'inflated' practice scores - so the 'drop' that you experienced on Test Day wasn't necessarily a drop - it might just be closer to your actual ability level.

It could be that you just had a 'bad day' - you're not the first person to have a poor night's sleep before his/her Exam and perform worse because of it. To be proactive about all of this, you now have to consider how you might adjust your routine so that this type of issue doesn't recur and hurt your performance when you retest.

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Re: How much can lack of sleep really affect your score?   [#permalink] 17 Jul 2017, 17:03
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