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Need Help tp prepare for GMAT exam right this time

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Need Help tp prepare for GMAT exam right this time  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Feb 2019, 08:35
I have already given GMAT 4 times last year and plan to give it this year again (by june). Last year I have gone through every book suggested (official guides, Aristotle, veritas, princeton review) and have given the tests of every the popular test series available (All 6 official tests twice, veritas, princeton, Manhattan Prep, e-gmat tests) and even hired a tutor to help me out with the verbal part. I used to score around 720-740 in the official tests and 690-710 in the other test series. However, in the real tests my score has constantly gone down (verbal being the major contributing factor). My score went down from 630 (in first attempt) - 540 (in the 4 attempt). I have also attempted all the questions in the previous year pdfs available on the GMAT club. I have no idea how to go about the preperation this time around as I have already practiced the basic material multiple times last year and I want the 5 time to be the last time I give the exam. I am open to any suggestions. Please help me out.
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New post 25 Feb 2019, 08:58
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I suggest that you try Empowergmat. In my opinion they have the best tactics to ace the GMAT. You can use the trial period to decide whether you want to subscribe or not.

Best wishes!



smrishar wrote:
I have already given GMAT 4 times last year and plan to give it this year again (by june). Last year I have gone through every book suggested (official guides, Aristotle, veritas, princeton review) and have given the tests of every the popular test series available (All 6 official tests twice, veritas, princeton, Manhattan Prep, e-gmat tests) and even hired a tutor to help me out with the verbal part. I used to score around 720-740 in the official tests and 690-710 in the other test series. However, in the real tests my score has constantly gone down (verbal being the major contributing factor). My score went down from 630 (in first attempt) - 540 (in the 4 attempt). I have also attempted all the questions in the previous year pdfs available on the GMAT club. I have no idea how to go about the preperation this time around as I have already practiced the basic material multiple times last year and I want the 5 time to be the last time I give the exam. I am open to any suggestions. Please help me out.
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New post 25 Feb 2019, 09:27
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Yes, you need a more structured study plan and EMPOWERgmat is probably one of the best options. Personally, I suggest that you sign up for an online course that offers both Quant and Verbal coaching. Therefore, I highly recommend EMPOWERgmat. The course covers concepts very effectively and offers some of the best strategies for tackling both Quant, and Verbal questions, and is one of the main reasons I have comfortably score 700+ in all practices tests. All the best!

funsogu wrote:
I suggest that you try Empowergmat. In my opinion they have the best tactics to ace the GMAT. You can use the trial period to decide whether you want to subscribe or not.

Best wishes!



smrishar wrote:
I have already given GMAT 4 times last year and plan to give it this year again (by june). Last year I have gone through every book suggested (official guides, Aristotle, veritas, princeton review) and have given the tests of every the popular test series available (All 6 official tests twice, veritas, princeton, Manhattan Prep, e-gmat tests) and even hired a tutor to help me out with the verbal part. I used to score around 720-740 in the official tests and 690-710 in the other test series. However, in the real tests my score has constantly gone down (verbal being the major contributing factor). My score went down from 630 (in first attempt) - 540 (in the 4 attempt). I have also attempted all the questions in the previous year pdfs available on the GMAT club. I have no idea how to go about the preperation this time around as I have already practiced the basic material multiple times last year and I want the 5 time to be the last time I give the exam. I am open to any suggestions. Please help me out.

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New post Updated on: 27 Feb 2019, 06:59
smrishar wrote:
I have already given GMAT 4 times last year and plan to give it this year again (by june). Last year I have gone through every book suggested (official guides, Aristotle, veritas, princeton review) and have given the tests of every the popular test series available (All 6 official tests twice, veritas, princeton, Manhattan Prep, e-gmat tests) and even hired a tutor to help me out with the verbal part. I used to score around 720-740 in the official tests and 690-710 in the other test series. However, in the real tests my score has constantly gone down (verbal being the major contributing factor). My score went down from 630 (in first attempt) - 540 (in the 4 attempt). I have also attempted all the questions in the previous year pdfs available on the GMAT club. I have no idea how to go about the preperation this time around as I have already practiced the basic material multiple times last year and I want the 5 time to be the last time I give the exam. I am open to any suggestions. Please help me out.


I can feel you as I'm in a similar boat, but your case is quite unusual. It's difficult to comprehend why you're unable to repeat your fine mock test performances on the actual GMAT. Needless to say that you're the best person to identify your issues. Try to exhaustively list down the issues that you think are pulling you down, and then seek help to sort them out. I can only speculate things that might work for you. Here are my suggestions:

1. Try to resolve any exam day jitters that you may have
2. Reduce the quantity of your study material and increase the quality of learning by tracking your performance, revising topics regularly and analyzing solutions of the questions
3. Try using e-GMAT or any other such product to learn a particular way of problem solving. It usually helps to have a certain approach to attempt questions that is not always possible to gain using various types of study material.

I hope this helps. but we can talk more on this.
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Originally posted by iamsiddharthkapoor on 25 Feb 2019, 10:34.
Last edited by iamsiddharthkapoor on 27 Feb 2019, 06:59, edited 1 time in total.
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New post 25 Feb 2019, 14:05
Hi smrishar,

From what you've described, you've put in some serious study time already. Before I can offer you the specific advice that you’re looking for, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on how you've been studying and your goals:

Studies:
1) When did you take each of your Official GMATs and what were your Scores on EACH (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?
2) How long did you study before each attempt?
3) Have you used any other study materials besides the books that you mentioned?

Goals:
4) What is your goal score?
5) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
6) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

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New post 27 Feb 2019, 03:19
Buddy, you should allow yourself a break to forget things, so that you can learn it a fresh.

Never forget that REST IS BASIS OF EVERY ACTIVITY. You definitely will fill recharged after this break and you will see your target far nearer than now.
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New post 27 Feb 2019, 18:31
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Hi smrishar,

I’m sorry to hear how things have been going with your GMAT. Given that your GMAT score has been trending downward, you likely have many quant and verbal weaknesses that are being exposed when you take the GMAT. Thus, you really need to circle back to the beginning and follow a thorough study plan that allows you to individually learn each quant and verbal topic, and then practice each topic until you gain mastery. By studying in such a way, you can ensure that you methodically improve your GMAT quant and verbal skills and leave no stone unturned.

For example, say you are learning about Number Properties. First, you should develop as much conceptual knowledge about Number Properties as possible. In other words, your goal will be to completely understand properties of factorials, perfect squares, quadratic patterns, LCM, GCF, units digit patterns, divisibility, and remainders, to name a few concepts. After carefully reviewing the conceptual underpinnings of how to answer Number Properties questions, practice by answering 50 or more questions just from Number Properties. When you do dozens of questions of the same type one after the other, you learn just what it takes to get questions of that type correct consistently. If you aren't getting close to 90 percent of questions of a certain type correct, go back and seek to better understand how that type of question works, and then do more questions of that type until you get to around at least 90 percent accuracy in your training. If you get 100 percent of some sets correct, even better. Number Properties is just one example; follow this process for all quant topics.

When you are working on learning to answer questions of a particular type, start off taking your time, and then seek to speed up as you get more comfortable answering questions of that type. As you do such practice, do a thorough analysis of each question that you don't get right. If you got a remainder question wrong, ask yourself why. Did you make a careless mistake? Did you not properly apply the remainder formula? Was there a concept you did not understand in the question? By carefully analyzing your mistakes, you will be able to efficiently fix your weaknesses and in turn improve your GMAT quant skills.

Follow a similar routine for verbal. For example, let’s say you start by learning about Critical Reasoning. Your first goal is to fully master the individual topics: Strengthen the Argument, Weaken the Argument, Resolve the Paradox, etc. As you learn about each question type, do focused practice so that you can track your skill in answering each type. If, for example, you get a weakening question wrong, ask yourself why. Did you make a careless mistake? Did you not recognize the specific question type? Were you doing too much analysis in your head? Did you skip over a keyword in an answer choice? You must thoroughly analyze your mistakes and seek to turn weaknesses into strengths by focusing on the question types you dread seeing and the questions you take a long time to answer correctly.

When practicing Reading Comprehension, you need to develop a reading strategy that is both efficient and thorough. Reading too fast and not understanding what you have read are equally as harmful as reading too slow and using up too much time. When attacking Reading Comprehension passages, you must have one clear goal in mind: to understand the context of what you are reading. However, you must do so efficiently, so you need to avoid getting bogged down in the details of each paragraph and instead focus on understanding the main point of each paragraph. That being said, do not fall into the trap of thinking that you can just read the intro and the conclusion and thereby comprehend the main idea of a paragraph. As you read a paragraph, consider how the context of the paragraph relates to previous paragraphs, so you can continue developing your overall understanding of the passage. Furthermore, as you practice, focus on the exact types of questions with which you struggle: Find the Main Idea, Inference, Author’s Tone, etc. As with Critical Reasoning, analyze your incorrect Reading Comprehension answers to better determine why you tend to get a particular question type wrong, and then improve upon your weaknesses. Keep in mind that GMAT Reading Comprehension passages are not meant to be easy to read. So, to better prepare yourself to analyze such passages, read magazines with similar content and style, such as the Economist, Scientific American, and Smithsonian.

Sentence Correction is a bit of a different animal compared to Reading Comprehension and Critical Reasoning. There are three aspects to getting correct answers to GMAT Sentence Correction questions: what you know, such as grammar rules, what you see, such as violations of grammar rules and the logic of sentence structure, and what you do, such as carefully considering each answer choice in the context of the non-underlined portion of the sentence. To drive up your Sentence Correction score, you likely will have to work on all three of those aspects.

Regarding what you know, first and foremost, you MUST know your grammar rules. Let's be clear, though: GMAT Sentence Correction is not just a test of knowledge of grammar rules. The reason for learning grammar rules is so that you can determine what sentences convey and whether sentences are well-constructed. In fact, in many cases, incorrect answers to Sentence Correction questions are grammatically flawless. Thus, often your task is to use your knowledge of grammar rules to determine which answer choice creates the most logical sentence meaning and structure.

This determination of whether sentences are well-constructed and logical is the second aspect of finding correct answers to Sentence Correction questions, what you see. To develop this skill, you probably have to slow way down. You won't develop this skill by spending under two minutes per question. For a while, anyway, you have to spend time with each question, maybe even ten or fifteen minutes on one question sometimes, analyzing every answer choice until you see the details that you have to see in order to choose the correct answer. As you go through the answer choices, consider the meaning conveyed by each version of the sentence. Does the meaning make sense? Even if you can tell what the version is SUPPOSED to convey, does the version really convey that meaning? Is there a verb to go with the subject? Do all pronouns clearly refer to nouns? By slowing way down and looking for these details, you learn to see what you have to see in order to clearly understand which answer to a Sentence Correction question is correct.

There is only one correct answer to any Sentence Correction question, there are clear reasons why that choice is correct and the others are not, and those reasons are not that the correct version simply "sounds right." In fact, the correct version often sounds a little off at first. That correct answers may sound a little off is not surprising. If the correct answer were always the one that sounded right, then most people most of the time would get Sentence Correction questions correct, without really knowing why the wrong answers were wrong and the correct answers were correct. So, you have to go beyond choosing what "sounds right" and learn to clearly see the logical reasons why one choice is better than all of the others.

As for the third aspect of getting Sentence Correction questions correct, what you do, the main thing you have to do is be very careful. You have to make sure that you are truly considering the structures of sentences and the meanings conveyed rather than allowing yourself to be tricked into choosing trap answers that sound right but don't convey logical meanings. You also have to make sure that you put some real energy into finding the correct answers. Finding the correct answer to a Sentence Correction question may take bouncing from choice to choice repeatedly until you start to see the differences between the choices that make all choices wrong except for one. Often, when you first look at the choices, only one or two seem obviously incorrect. Getting the right answers takes a certain work ethic. You have to be determined to see the differences and figure out the precise reasons that one choice is correct.

To improve what you do when you answer Sentence Correction questions, seek to become aware of how you are going about answering them. Are you being careful and looking for logic and details, or are you quickly eliminating choices that sound a little off and then choosing the best of the rest? If you choose an incorrect answer, consider what you did that resulted in your arriving at that answer and what you could do differently in order to arrive at correct answers more consistently. Furthermore, see how many questions you can get correct in a row as you practice. If you break your streak by missing one, consider what you could have done differently to extend your streak.

As with your Critical Reasoning and Reading Comprehension regimens, after learning a particular Sentence Correction topic, engage in focused practice with 30 questions or more that involve that topic. As your skills improve, you will then want to practice with questions that test you on skills from multiple Sentence Correction topics.

In order to follow the path described above, you may consider using an online self-study course, so take a look at the GMAT Club reviews for the best quant and verbal courses. You also may find it helpful to read this article about
how to score a 700+ on the GMAT.

Feel free to reach out with any further questions.

Good luck!
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Re: Need Help tp prepare for GMAT exam right this time  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Mar 2019, 04:06
Hi smrishar,

I am sorry to hear that the performance was not as per your expectation. The key to success is to keep the confidence intact and continue to put in a diligent effort, just like Prawee did.
    Prawee (550 to 740) used all the books and local coaching classes but was unable to improve her GMAT score beyond a certain point. She changed her approach and finally scored 740 in her 5th attempt and got a $180,000 fellowship cumulatively from 3 top business schools. She is currently pursuing MBA from Kellogg. Kellogg was once not even on her radar.

Understand what went wrong

As your performance was not in line with your mock scores, an ESR will help you understand what went wrong on the exam day. It can give you insights to understand if ability was the problem or time management was the cause for low score. The following article will help you analyse your ESR in 3 easy steps - How to analyse a GMAT ESR.

I would also like you to give a thought if test anxiety hampered your performance. Do not worry if that is the case. It can be tackled as well. Learn the 10 tips for tackling GMAT anxiety.

Continue to build your Skills

We have free sessions coming up this weekend. You can
    • Register for the SC webinar to learn the importance of meaning in solving SC questions
    • Register for the Number Properties Webinar to learn a methodical approach for giving a boost to your Quant prep.

Regards,
Zinnia
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New post 08 Mar 2019, 03:58
smrishar wrote:
I used to score around 720-740 in the official tests

Actually since you've been preparing for so long, I strongly suspect that you would be encountering repeat questions in official mocks, thereby inflating your score.
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New post 10 Mar 2019, 20:46
Hi smrishar,

Following up on our previous response. Were you able to check Prawee's GMAT journey? She, like you, had tried all she could to get to the desired score but was able to do it only in the 5th attempt. Also, did you think anxiety was a concern?

I would like to introduce you to our brand new tool - Personalized Study Planner since you mentioned you don't know how to go about your prep this time around. This tool will help you:
1. determine the Milestones (target abilities required) for each sub-section to reach your overall target score
2. estimate the amount of time that would be required to reach your target score
3. estimate your next GMAT date depending upon the amount of time you can spend daily. In case you already have a GMAT date in mind, you can determine the amount of time you will be required to spend daily to be able to take the test by then.

Once you have created your plan, write to us at support@e-gmat.com to understand how to execute the plan.

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Aditee
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Re: Need Help tp prepare for GMAT exam right this time   [#permalink] 10 Mar 2019, 20:46
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