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My Debrief - 760 (Q50, V42) IR 8

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My Debrief - 760 (Q50, V42) IR 8 [#permalink]

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New post 08 Mar 2017, 23:07
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I just took the GMAT for the first and last (thankfully!) time a few days ago. This forum has been incredibly helpful and I'd like to set out my experience - it would be great if I can help someone out with this.

Background: Lawyer in mid-20s who has been considering whether to do an MBA since the start of the year. I speak regularly to friends who are currently in an MBA program or who have completed an MBA. A very common piece of advice I received was - take the GMAT first and get that out of the way. Around February, I decided to take some action. I had no idea where to begin and thankfully found this wonderful forum.

Preparation: I took a prep test on 8 Feb to diagnose what needed to be done, and scored a 690 (Q42 V42). Was quite pleased with the overall score and verbal score (probably a result of going through copious documents in my day job), but knew I had to work hard on my quant (my math had been untouched for at least 7 years). Given my background in law, I figured a good quant score was even more important to demonstrate to the admissions committees that I could handle the quantitative aspect of the coursework. Nonetheless, I thought I had a good starting point and started searching for dates about 3 weeks out, booked the test date, and proceeded with my preparation.

I had to travel for work a couple of times before my test date, leaving approximately 2.5 weeks worth of time for preparation. I figured I could dedicate about 3 hours every evening to study, and slightly more on weekends, leaving just a bit of time to spend with my girlfriend. I realized I didn't have that much time left and had to be as focused and efficient as possible.

For verbal, I was quite happy with the state of things. My weakness was sentence correction with those obscure grammar rules (all the errors I made in the practice test were in SC). I spent 1 day going through grammar and practicing with the OG Guide and was happy to leave verbal alone to focus on quant.

Spent the rest of the time going through the concepts in quant and practicing the questions over and over and over and over again. I started reviewing the basic concepts using the revision portion of the OG Guide. I then practiced a lot - finished all of the quant questions in the OG Guide and the Quant Guide. I also went through some of the more challenging questions found on this forum.

I made sure to keep track of my progress by taking regular practice tests. I bought exam pack 2 and decided to do a practice test every week. In the 2nd practice test (2 weeks before my test date), I managed a 740 (Q47, V45); 3rd practice test was taken 1 week before my test date 760 (Q50, V44); 4th practice test was taken the day before the actual test 760 (Q49, V46).

Test Day: I was feeling quite confident and had a decent rest the night before. Had a nice heavy breakfast and reached the test center 40 minutes before my test time (9am). I was then told that a passport was required for registration! I assumed that the driver's license I brought along would have been sufficient, but the tester insisted that only the passport would work. Thankfully my house was near the test center and I got a cab home and back to the test center, arriving 5 minutes before the test time.

I was a bit flustered by then, but had no time to compose myself. I went in and started work on the essay. I found in my practice tests that the essay was helpful in warming up the mind before the important and arguably more difficult portions. I was even more thankful for the essay this time as it allowed me time to calm down after the mad rush earlier. Finished the essay and followed that up with the IR section - had a bit of problems with time management but managed to finish on time.

At this point, I took the optional break and had a quick snack (mars bar) and drank a lot of water. I went in to continue with the quant section and went through the questions. The section went alright and I was quite happy that the questions got progressively more difficult. There were handful of questions that I had to guess the answers. About halfway through the test though, I found myself urgently needing to pee and regretted drinking all that water. Ended up rushing through the last 5 or so questions just so that I could go to the washroom and almost ran out of my seat for the 2nd optional break.

Proceeded with the verbal section and found it trickier than usual. Went through all of the questions and found that there most of the questions had more than 1 acceptable option. Went through the section as best as I could and was exhausted by the time I finished.

I then clicked through the survey and was relieved to find that I managed a 760 (Q50, V 42). Also scored an 8 for IR. Felt like I left a few points on the table for verbal (compared to my practice scores), but no complaints with the overall and quant scores. I took the printout, went back home, and fell asleep for 3 hours.

Some thoughts: Some will disagree with me, but I found the OG Guides and this forum to be all the material anyone would need for the GMAT. I found the questions in other guides that I browsed through to be quite different in style from those found in the GMAT, and was not confident using them for my prep (bearing in mind I had very limited time). I find that going through all of the OG Guide questions is more than enough.

On a related note, when revising, I found it very helpful to focus on the low hanging fruits by identifying areas I was particularly weak in (sentence correction, probabilities and triangles). I spent a lot of my time on these areas and got them up to a reasonable standard.

I also found it helpful and comforting to keep in mind that I could get quite a number of questions wrong and still end up with a decent score. For instance, one of my practice tests that ended up with a 760 had 10 incorrect answers for quant (more than a quarter of the questions!) and 5 incorrect answers for verbal. Given this, I was quite happy to guess some of the answers to the excessively difficult questions. The important point is to pick your battles wisely during the test and manage time well.

Finally, on the practice tests. I found them very helpful as a benchmark for my revision and also as a confidence booster. I read somewhere that the practice tests give a very accurate prediction of your actual test result (within 30 points if I remember correctly), and having that knowledge of your approximate score really helps deal with anxiety during test day. Just remember to try to simulate actual conditions as much as possible!

Good luck to anyone that will be taking their GMAT!
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Re: My Debrief - 760 (Q50, V42) IR 8 [#permalink]

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New post 10 Mar 2017, 11:14
Kudos!! Congrats for the high score!

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My Debrief - 760 (Q50, V42) IR 8 [#permalink]

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New post 12 Mar 2017, 06:38
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SajjadAhmad wrote:
Congrats for your top score :)
Please tell me about your prep material

Regards

Posted from my mobile device

Posted from my mobile device


Thanks guys!

I used the 3 OG books (OG Review, OG Quant and OG Verbal), 2017 editions that I bought as a bundle from the bookstore. I also used the questions found on this forum. Finally, I relied on exampack 2 for the practice tests.

For quant, I relied on the OG Quant to review basic concepts. I also went through all of the questions found in the OG books and some of the level 700+ questions on this forum.

For verbal, as I've explained, I didn't really do much beyond revising some of the common grammar concepts that are tested in the GMAT. My OG verbal was basically unused except for a couple of SC questions.

The exampack 2 was probably the most valuable preparation material I used. I'll simulate actual test conditions with a full length test and review the incorrect answers (explanations are easily found on this forum) afterwards. I'll then reset the questions and go through the tests again for additional questions to practice with.

To me, it was very important that the questions I practiced with were similar to the actual questions I'll face during the test, and that meant relying only on material from the GMAT creators.

Hope this helps! Happy to help with further questions.
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Re: My Debrief - 760 (Q50, V42) IR 8 [#permalink]

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New post 12 Mar 2017, 08:54
bigbanana14 wrote:
I just took the GMAT for the first and last (thankfully!) time a few days ago. This forum has been incredibly helpful and I'd like to set out my experience - it would be great if I can help someone out with this.

Background: Lawyer in mid-20s who has been considering whether to do an MBA since the start of the year. I speak regularly to friends who are currently in an MBA program or who have completed an MBA. A very common piece of advice I received was - take the GMAT first and get that out of the way. Around February, I decided to take some action. I had no idea where to begin and thankfully found this wonderful forum.

Preparation: I took a prep test on 8 Feb to diagnose what needed to be done, and scored a 690 (Q42 V42). Was quite pleased with the overall score and verbal score (probably a result of going through copious documents in my day job), but knew I had to work hard on my quant (my math had been untouched for at least 7 years). Given my background in law, I figured a good quant score was even more important to demonstrate to the admissions committees that I could handle the quantitative aspect of the coursework. Nonetheless, I thought I had a good starting point and started searching for dates about 3 weeks out, booked the test date, and proceeded with my preparation.

I had to travel for work a couple of times before my test date, leaving approximately 2.5 weeks worth of time for preparation. I figured I could dedicate about 3 hours every evening to study, and slightly more on weekends, leaving just a bit of time to spend with my girlfriend. I realized I didn't have that much time left and had to be as focused and efficient as possible.

For verbal, I was quite happy with the state of things. My weakness was sentence correction with those obscure grammar rules (all the errors I made in the practice test were in SC). I spent 1 day going through grammar and practicing with the OG Guide and was happy to leave verbal alone to focus on quant.

Spent the rest of the time going through the concepts in quant and practicing the questions over and over and over and over again. I started reviewing the basic concepts using the revision portion of the OG Guide. I then practiced a lot - finished all of the quant questions in the OG Guide and the Quant Guide. I also went through some of the more challenging questions found on this forum.

I made sure to keep track of my progress by taking regular practice tests. I bought exam pack 2 and decided to do a practice test every week. In the 2nd practice test (2 weeks before my test date), I managed a 740 (Q47, V45); 3rd practice test was taken 1 week before my test date 760 (Q50, V44); 4th practice test was taken the day before the actual test 760 (Q49, V46).

Test Day: I was feeling quite confident and had a decent rest the night before. Had a nice heavy breakfast and reached the test center 40 minutes before my test time (9am). I was then told that a passport was required for registration! I assumed that the driver's license I brought along would have been sufficient, but the tester insisted that only the passport would work. Thankfully my house was near the test center and I got a cab home and back to the test center, arriving 5 minutes before the test time.

I was a bit flustered by then, but had no time to compose myself. I went in and started work on the essay. I found in my practice tests that the essay was helpful in warming up the mind before the important and arguably more difficult portions. I was even more thankful for the essay this time as it allowed me time to calm down after the mad rush earlier. Finished the essay and followed that up with the IR section - had a bit of problems with time management but managed to finish on time.

At this point, I took the optional break and had a quick snack (mars bar) and drank a lot of water. I went in to continue with the quant section and went through the questions. The section went alright and I was quite happy that the questions got progressively more difficult. There were handful of questions that I had to guess the answers. About halfway through the test though, I found myself urgently needing to pee and regretted drinking all that water. Ended up rushing through the last 5 or so questions just so that I could go to the washroom and almost ran out of my seat for the 2nd optional break.

Proceeded with the verbal section and found it trickier than usual. Went through all of the questions and found that there most of the questions had more than 1 acceptable option. Went through the section as best as I could and was exhausted by the time I finished.

I then clicked through the survey and was relieved to find that I managed a 760 (Q50, V 42). Also scored an 8 for IR. Felt like I left a few points on the table for verbal (compared to my practice scores), but no complaints with the overall and quant scores. I took the printout, went back home, and fell asleep for 3 hours.

Some thoughts: Some will disagree with me, but I found the OG Guides and this forum to be all the material anyone would need for the GMAT. I found the questions in other guides that I browsed through to be quite different in style from those found in the GMAT, and was not confident using them for my prep (bearing in mind I had very limited time). I find that going through all of the OG Guide questions is more than enough.

On a related note, when revising, I found it very helpful to focus on the low hanging fruits by identifying areas I was particularly weak in (sentence correction, probabilities and triangles). I spent a lot of my time on these areas and got them up to a reasonable standard.

I also found it helpful and comforting to keep in mind that I could get quite a number of questions wrong and still end up with a decent score. For instance, one of my practice tests that ended up with a 760 had 10 incorrect answers for quant (more than a quarter of the questions!) and 5 incorrect answers for verbal. Given this, I was quite happy to guess some of the answers to the excessively difficult questions. The important point is to pick your battles wisely during the test and manage time well.

Finally, on the practice tests. I found them very helpful as a benchmark for my revision and also as a confidence booster. I read somewhere that the practice tests give a very accurate prediction of your actual test result (within 30 points if I remember correctly), and having that knowledge of your approximate score really helps deal with anxiety during test day. Just remember to try to simulate actual conditions as much as possible!

Good luck to anyone that will be taking their GMAT!


Nice job on the quant improvement! How would you say you split your time in quant (reading/studying concepts vs. doing practice problems)? Did you keep an error log?
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My Debrief - 760 (Q50, V42) IR 8 [#permalink]

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New post 13 Mar 2017, 07:41
okay wrote:
bigbanana14 wrote:
I just took the GMAT for the first and last (thankfully!) time a few days ago. This forum has been incredibly helpful and I'd like to set out my experience - it would be great if I can help someone out with this.

Background: Lawyer in mid-20s who has been considering whether to do an MBA since the start of the year. I speak regularly to friends who are currently in an MBA program or who have completed an MBA. A very common piece of advice I received was - take the GMAT first and get that out of the way. Around February, I decided to take some action. I had no idea where to begin and thankfully found this wonderful forum.

Preparation: I took a prep test on 8 Feb to diagnose what needed to be done, and scored a 690 (Q42 V42). Was quite pleased with the overall score and verbal score (probably a result of going through copious documents in my day job), but knew I had to work hard on my quant (my math had been untouched for at least 7 years). Given my background in law, I figured a good quant score was even more important to demonstrate to the admissions committees that I could handle the quantitative aspect of the coursework. Nonetheless, I thought I had a good starting point and started searching for dates about 3 weeks out, booked the test date, and proceeded with my preparation.

I had to travel for work a couple of times before my test date, leaving approximately 2.5 weeks worth of time for preparation. I figured I could dedicate about 3 hours every evening to study, and slightly more on weekends, leaving just a bit of time to spend with my girlfriend. I realized I didn't have that much time left and had to be as focused and efficient as possible.

For verbal, I was quite happy with the state of things. My weakness was sentence correction with those obscure grammar rules (all the errors I made in the practice test were in SC). I spent 1 day going through grammar and practicing with the OG Guide and was happy to leave verbal alone to focus on quant.

Spent the rest of the time going through the concepts in quant and practicing the questions over and over and over and over again. I started reviewing the basic concepts using the revision portion of the OG Guide. I then practiced a lot - finished all of the quant questions in the OG Guide and the Quant Guide. I also went through some of the more challenging questions found on this forum.

I made sure to keep track of my progress by taking regular practice tests. I bought exam pack 2 and decided to do a practice test every week. In the 2nd practice test (2 weeks before my test date), I managed a 740 (Q47, V45); 3rd practice test was taken 1 week before my test date 760 (Q50, V44); 4th practice test was taken the day before the actual test 760 (Q49, V46).

Test Day: I was feeling quite confident and had a decent rest the night before. Had a nice heavy breakfast and reached the test center 40 minutes before my test time (9am). I was then told that a passport was required for registration! I assumed that the driver's license I brought along would have been sufficient, but the tester insisted that only the passport would work. Thankfully my house was near the test center and I got a cab home and back to the test center, arriving 5 minutes before the test time.

I was a bit flustered by then, but had no time to compose myself. I went in and started work on the essay. I found in my practice tests that the essay was helpful in warming up the mind before the important and arguably more difficult portions. I was even more thankful for the essay this time as it allowed me time to calm down after the mad rush earlier. Finished the essay and followed that up with the IR section - had a bit of problems with time management but managed to finish on time.

At this point, I took the optional break and had a quick snack (mars bar) and drank a lot of water. I went in to continue with the quant section and went through the questions. The section went alright and I was quite happy that the questions got progressively more difficult. There were handful of questions that I had to guess the answers. About halfway through the test though, I found myself urgently needing to pee and regretted drinking all that water. Ended up rushing through the last 5 or so questions just so that I could go to the washroom and almost ran out of my seat for the 2nd optional break.

Proceeded with the verbal section and found it trickier than usual. Went through all of the questions and found that there most of the questions had more than 1 acceptable option. Went through the section as best as I could and was exhausted by the time I finished.

I then clicked through the survey and was relieved to find that I managed a 760 (Q50, V 42). Also scored an 8 for IR. Felt like I left a few points on the table for verbal (compared to my practice scores), but no complaints with the overall and quant scores. I took the printout, went back home, and fell asleep for 3 hours.

Some thoughts: Some will disagree with me, but I found the OG Guides and this forum to be all the material anyone would need for the GMAT. I found the questions in other guides that I browsed through to be quite different in style from those found in the GMAT, and was not confident using them for my prep (bearing in mind I had very limited time). I find that going through all of the OG Guide questions is more than enough.

On a related note, when revising, I found it very helpful to focus on the low hanging fruits by identifying areas I was particularly weak in (sentence correction, probabilities and triangles). I spent a lot of my time on these areas and got them up to a reasonable standard.

I also found it helpful and comforting to keep in mind that I could get quite a number of questions wrong and still end up with a decent score. For instance, one of my practice tests that ended up with a 760 had 10 incorrect answers for quant (more than a quarter of the questions!) and 5 incorrect answers for verbal. Given this, I was quite happy to guess some of the answers to the excessively difficult questions. The important point is to pick your battles wisely during the test and manage time well.

Finally, on the practice tests. I found them very helpful as a benchmark for my revision and also as a confidence booster. I read somewhere that the practice tests give a very accurate prediction of your actual test result (within 30 points if I remember correctly), and having that knowledge of your approximate score really helps deal with anxiety during test day. Just remember to try to simulate actual conditions as much as possible!

Good luck to anyone that will be taking their GMAT!


Nice job on the quant improvement! How would you say you split your time in quant (reading/studying concepts vs. doing practice problems)? Did you keep an error log?


Hi okay,

I spent 1 evening revising the concepts (around 4 hours) and the vast majority of my time practising on the questions. I think the concepts tested are quite basic and the real challenge with the GMAT is in applying and manipulating these concepts in a relatively short amount of time for each question. To me, the best way to achieve this was to attempt more questions and understand the different ways each concept could be tested.

Too disorganized for a data log - it would have been quite lengthy especially in the beginning! But I did have an idea of which areas I was weak in and tried to focus on them.
My Debrief - 760 (Q50, V42) IR 8   [#permalink] 13 Mar 2017, 07:41
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My Debrief - 760 (Q50, V42) IR 8

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