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Might have messed up AWA?

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Might have messed up AWA?  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Aug 2018, 00:11
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Hello everyone! I took GMAT for the first time today after 1.5 months of prep. Scored 750 (Q49, V44) with an IR score of 8. I did the AWA section last and was running out of time, so I quickly submitted the essay without checking. Thinking back, I forgot to erase away a list of key words I typed out while structuring the essay, and they are right at the top of the essay! Has anyone else experienced this oversight in the past? I wonder how heavily penalized my AWA section will be, since the first line / “paragraph” will look like just a of string of words with no punctuation.

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Re: Might have messed up AWA?  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Aug 2018, 01:45
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monicaterry wrote:
Hello everyone! I took GMAT for the first time today after 1.5 months of prep. Scored 750 (Q49, V44) with an IR score of 8. I did the AWA section last and was running out of time, so I quickly submitted the essay without checking. Thinking back, I forgot to erase away a list of key words I typed out while structuring the essay, and they are right at the top of the essay! Has anyone else experienced this oversight in the past? I wonder how heavily penalized my AWA section will be, since the first line / “paragraph” will look like just a of string of words with no punctuation.

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Hey monicaterry

Welcome to GMATClub!

There is no doubt that the oversight may cause a drop of a few points, but you
can always explain it in your optional essay. Also, I think it makes sense to wait
for the score to arrive and then take a call(once it is really low)

Btw, Kudos on the awesome GMAT score and the perfect IR. Hope you get into your first-choice school.
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Re: Might have messed up AWA?  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Aug 2018, 09:35
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Congrats monicaterry. This is an awesome score. I wouldn't worry too much about the AWA, it's not the end of the world if you drop a few points. In my opinion, your stellar overall score will make up for that. Do you mind sharing how you prepared for the test in 1.5 months? That will be very helpful. Congrats once again.

Cheers!
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New post 15 Aug 2018, 04:54
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Hi funsogu,

I really hope you're right! I just have to wait the 20 days or so for the verdict as pushpitkc mentioned. In the meanwhile, I'm continuing with quant and verbal drills in case a retake is needed. Targeting the first round of applications for Columbia, fingers crossed.

How I prepped in 1.5 months:

Resources: Gmat Club, Official Guide (+ paid for additional CATs), Kaplan Prep Plus, 7 day-trial of Economist GMAT Tutor and Veritasprep (but I soon realized Veritas' Verbal questions aren't really similar to the OG questions).

1. Used GMAT OG to refresh Math basics, then went straight to the Diagnostic Test to zoom in on weaknesses since there wasn't much time, plus I'm working full-time

2. Did a study plan: 10 days Quant and 10 days Verbal, committing at least 3 hours daily, and at least 2 CATs per weekend. The remaining time was for drills and unforeseen events e.g. client dinners / work travel, which ended up eating quite a few days into the study plan.

3. For Quant, I zoomed straight to Gmat Club's resources. @Bunuel's explanations helped me a lot, since I'm weak in Number Properties. I found a collection of Quant 700-800 problems on this forum which was very depressing to start with (as I'd get stuck for 15 minutes on 1 question), but paid off in the end as I gained confidence in some topics. Unfortunately I didn't have time to go through all of the topics. I did think that if anyone concentrate on Quant drills using Gmat Club resources, given 2 months or so, 48-50 for Quant shouldn't be an issue. Gmat Club really has the best Quant materials to work with.

4. For Verbal, the OG did not give much by way of grammar / idioms refresh. The Economist GMAT Tutor's 7-day trial gave me a bit of tips for Sentence Correction. I also found a collection of 100 700+ SC questions on Gmat Club, which I completed. Kaplan's guide for Critical Reasoning is quite useful, basically to avoid extreme statements such as 'this is the only way to xxx', and very weak ones 'some xxx did that'. I neglected Reading Comprehension due to lack of time. Fortunately I've been reading Yuval Harari's Sapiens. Since it has components of anthropology studies, history, and socioeconomic discussions, it reads like a typical RC passage. Semi-familiarity with the topics was a blessing when digging through RC passages.

5. IR & AWA: only drilled through these using the CATs. Maybe if I'd had prepped more on AWA, time management would've been better and I would've remembered to remove the gibberish self-pointers before time was up :(
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Re: Might have messed up AWA?  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Aug 2018, 14:55
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monicaterry, congratulations on the killer score!

Honestly, I don't think you're going to have any trouble at all. You're obviously a perfectly capable writer, and the AWA isn't... um, well, it isn't really graded very carefully, and business schools don't care about it much, anyway. I would be absolutely shocked if your AWA score is low enough to be a problem in admissions.

True story: the last time I took the GMAT, I decided to see what would happen if I wrote a bunch of random, irrelevant garbage in the middle of my essays. So in the middle of the second paragraph, I wrote a long, sprawling diatribe in parentheses. Something like, "Hello friends! I know that it must be incredibly boring to read hundreds of these essays, day after day, and I just want to thank you for everything that you do. I think you deserve a cookie for your efforts. Like, a really good cookie -- you know, like a macadamia chocolate chip cookie, maybe with some extra brown sugar, pulled straight from a warm oven. Personally, I'm also a fan of drinking a cup of coffee with Bailey's in it while I eat that particular type of cookie..."

Just random AF. I went on for five or six lines, then continued with the rest of the essay.

And guess what? That got me a perfect 6 on the AWA. :idontknow: To be fair, I did write and proofread everything else really carefully, but still: if they were paying any attention, they should have penalized me at least a little bit for it.

Sure, your keywords were more visible, but I don't think they'll cost you much.

Please keep us posted, and congrats again on your beatdown of the rest of the test!
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Re: Might have messed up AWA?  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Aug 2018, 18:40
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Hi monicaterry,

Awesome GMAT score! I agree that you should just wait to see your AWA score in 20 days. I also like that you are keeping fresh with quant and verbal in the event that you need to retake the GMAT.

Once you get your official score, please report back here with an update.

Good luck!
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New post 17 Aug 2018, 18:58
Hihi,

To update, my GMAT Official Score was out this morning. I logged in with trepidation, calculating the number of days I still have to squeeze for last-minute drills before retaking. I glanced through and saw a 4 - but that was the line where you indicated your GPA upon a score of 4.0. Glanced down further................. and it was a 6.

I cannot believe it.

GMATNinja , thanks for sharing your experience. I read your post just before the Official Score :)

This forum may have been my lifesaver since I was going crazy thinking I messed up badly with no time to spare before first round admissions end. It was also affecting my work until you guys told me to chill.

THANK YOU!
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New post 17 Aug 2018, 22:40
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Congratulations!! monicaterry that is an amazing score!

Also thanks for prompting GMATNinja to post that hilarious anecdote :lol:


Cheers,
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Re: Might have messed up AWA? &nbs [#permalink] 17 Aug 2018, 22:40
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