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# Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image)

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Intern
Joined: 23 Jul 2015
Posts: 32
Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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20 Jul 2017, 14:19
Was scoring Q49-Q50 on all mocks (official, gmat club, etc.), so was surprised to see a Q42 (45th percentile) on the actual test.

Wasn’t the test suppose to be adaptive? Of course it wouldn’t be adaptive for the extreme test taker. For example, a genius might get 8 of the last 9 correct, or even 9 of the last 9 correct and the test wouldn’t be considered adaptive for him because he knows all the answers. On the same hand a clown might get 0 or 1 of the last 9 questions correct, and the test wouldn’t be adaptive for him because he doesn’t know any of the questions.
But I scored around the 50th percentile, how can you say your test was adaptive, and you were adapting the questions to my level the entire test and have a test taker end up answering 8 of the last 9 questions correctly? (assuming 8 of 9 correct is considered good)
More importantly, the questions were between a medium to hard level, how can you have a test taker end up answering 8 of the last 9 correctly and end up with such a poor score in the 45th percentile?

I would consider almost all of the questions I had to be at a 600-700 level, very few at sub 600 level, and I don’t think I had a 700 level question. Even in the second question set, I also got 8 of 9 questions correctly, and the questions raised very little in difficulty. Are the 700 level questions reserved only for high scorers (Q49+) and even at that, those scorers only see 700+ level questions at the very end, and see very few of them (maybe the last 3, 5, or 7 questions)?

Why do you think I scored so poorly?
(1) I didn’t start off too well, maybe answered 6-7 of the first 9 questions correctly. So did missing 2-3 questions at the beginning considered not recoverable?
(2) I didn’t do well in the 3rd question set, maybe got 5 of 9 correct, so I missed 4. Hypothetically speaking, say I got 3 of those 4 right, at that point I would have got 8 of the 9 correct in the 3rd section also. At that point, I had 8 of 9 correct in the 2nd section, 8 of 9 correct in the 3rd section (hypothetically), and 8 of 9 correct in the 4th section. I would consider that doing exceptionally well, a score worthy in the 80th+ percentile. So did missing 3 questions in the 3rd problem set, completely tank my score to the 45th percentile?
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Re: Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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20 Jul 2017, 22:06
jasonfodor wrote:
Was scoring Q49-Q50 on all mocks (official, gmat club, etc.), so was surprised to see a Q42 (45th percentile) on the actual test.

Wasn’t the test suppose to be adaptive? Of course it wouldn’t be adaptive for the extreme test taker. For example, a genius might get 8 of the last 9 correct, or even 9 of the last 9 correct and the test wouldn’t be considered adaptive for him because he knows all the answers. On the same hand a clown might get 0 or 1 of the last 9 questions correct, and the test wouldn’t be adaptive for him because he doesn’t know any of the questions.
But I scored around the 50th percentile, how can you say your test was adaptive, and you were adapting the questions to my level the entire test and have a test taker end up answering 8 of the last 9 questions correctly? (assuming 8 of 9 correct is considered good)
More importantly, the questions were between a medium to hard level, how can you have a test taker end up answering 8 of the last 9 correctly and end up with such a poor score in the 45th percentile?

I would consider almost all of the questions I had to be at a 600-700 level, very few at sub 600 level, and I don’t think I had a 700 level question. Even in the second question set, I also got 8 of 9 questions correctly, and the questions raised very little in difficulty. Are the 700 level questions reserved only for high scorers (Q49+) and even at that, those scorers only see 700+ level questions at the very end, and see very few of them (maybe the last 3, 5, or 7 questions)?

Why do you think I scored so poorly?
(1) I didn’t start off too well, maybe answered 6-7 of the first 9 questions correctly. So did missing 2-3 questions at the beginning considered not recoverable?
(2) I didn’t do well in the 3rd question set, maybe got 5 of 9 correct, so I missed 4. Hypothetically speaking, say I got 3 of those 4 right, at that point I would have got 8 of the 9 correct in the 3rd section also. At that point, I had 8 of 9 correct in the 2nd section, 8 of 9 correct in the 3rd section (hypothetically), and 8 of 9 correct in the 4th section. I would consider that doing exceptionally well, a score worthy in the 80th+ percentile. So did missing 3 questions in the 3rd problem set, completely tank my score to the 45th percentile?
Look at the line showing the average difficulty of the questions you got wrong. It's always above the blue line. That shows that the test was giving you one or more questions that were above the level you were maintaining. That's why your score actually went up consistently (you managed to recover, somewhat, from a pretty bad start).

This is not say that the test is adaptive and that you got the score that reflects your true capability. This is just to say that the test is adaptive, and that you probably just underperformed on test day.
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Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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21 Jul 2017, 01:14
jasonfodor I haven't took any mocks or GMAT actual test as of now but I would like to throw some light on your score 45 in QA.

As per the graph provided by you, I can see that you did mistake in probably 3 out of 10 questions in the first section which was a pool of below 600 level questions. This gave you a lazy start. Then you did well in 2nd section and build the score but in the 3rd section you started doing mistake and did wrong in about 4 questions out of 9 . This was the chance to counter your lazy start but this mistake costed you so much that after 3rd section you never get any harder questions ans continued to give same level questions.

So what to depict from this, First 10 questions is very important and more important than last 10 questions.
Avoid silly mistakes in easy questions as much as possible and take time to recheck. A silly mistake in a simple question will cost you more than anything else.

I hope this was a bad day for you. So don't worry . keep studying and solving questions with a timer and you will get your actual score of around 50-51.

Don't forget to check this scientific analysis showing how the first 10 questions become very important in the GMAT test.
https://gmatclub.com/forum/un-scientifi ... 64970.html
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Re: Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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06 Aug 2017, 11:10
I think the critical turning point is in your 3rd quarter where you got many questions wrong, resulting in a lower average difficulty level in the 4th quarter. The problem with missing these questions in the 3rd quarter is that they were probably easier problems which penalize you heavily if you get them wrong. Honestly, because of your less than ideal start, the overall difficulty level was probably not too high, and if you wanted to boost the difficulty level you would need to answer the vast majority of the remaining questions right, which you did not achieve. Overall, the scoring system determines that your performance throughout the test is consistent with your performance with your performance in the first quarter and therefore gave you the score you ended up getting.
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Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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Updated on: 12 Sep 2017, 18:35
1
Top Contributor
In my experience (I've taken the GMAT 5 times), Quant scores can vary widely due to the adaptive algorithm, and the extreme importance of the first 10-12 questions.

For example, you got 7 wrong (out of the 28 counted questions) and got a Q42. Others have received scores of Q50 with 6 questions wrong!

On Quant, it's all about the managing the algorithm. Here's what you have to do:

1) Make sure you ace the first half of the test. No more than 1 or 2 wrong in the 1st or 2nd quartile of questions.
2) Try your absolute best to avoid getting more than one question wrong in a row.
3) Go slowly enough to excel at the beginning (no careless mistakes!), but quickly enough to finish all the questions before time expires.

_________________

Harvard grad and 99% GMAT scorer, offering expert, private GMAT tutoring and coaching, both in-person (San Diego, CA, USA) and online worldwide, since 2002.

One of the only known humans to have taken the GMAT 5 times and scored in the 700s every time (700, 710, 730, 750, 770), including verified section scores of Q50 / V47, as well as personal bests of 8/8 IR (2 times), 6/6 AWA (4 times), 50/51Q and 48/51V (1 question wrong).

You can download my official test-taker score report (all scores within the last 5 years) directly from the Pearson Vue website: https://tinyurl.com/y8zh6qby Date of Birth: 09 December 1979.

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Originally posted by mcelroytutoring on 09 Sep 2017, 08:35.
Last edited by mcelroytutoring on 12 Sep 2017, 18:35, edited 3 times in total.
Manager
Joined: 30 May 2017
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Location: India
GMAT 1: 760 Q50 V42
Re: Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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11 Sep 2017, 21:55
I think GMAC should either change its algorithm or accept the importance of the first few questions.
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Posts: 646
Re: Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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12 Sep 2017, 00:31
mcelroytutoring wrote:
In my experience, Quant scores can vary widely due to the adaptive algorithm, and the extreme importance of the first 10-12 questions.

For example, you got 7 wrong (out of the 28 counted questions) and got a Q42. Others have received scores of Q50 with 6 questions wrong!

On Quant, it's all about the managing the algorithm. Here's what you have to do:

1) Make sure you ace the first half of the test. No more than 1 or 2 wrong in the 1st or 2nd quartile of questions.
2) Try your absolute best to avoid getting more than one question wrong in a row.
3) Go slow enough to excel at the beginning (no careless mistakes!), but fast enough to finish all the questions.

Sir,

Thank you for this advise-this is really helpful. On similar lines, can you please share 3 points for scoring 40+ in verbal as well?
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Re: Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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12 Sep 2017, 01:17
mcelroytutoring wrote:
In my experience, Quant scores can vary widely due to the adaptive algorithm, and the extreme importance of the first 10-12 questions.

For example, you got 7 wrong (out of the 28 counted questions) and got a Q42. Others have received scores of Q50 with 6 questions wrong!

On Quant, it's all about the managing the algorithm. Here's what you have to do:

1) Make sure you ace the first half of the test. No more than 1 or 2 wrong in the 1st or 2nd quartile of questions.
2) Try your absolute best to avoid getting more than one question wrong in a row.
3) Go slow enough to excel at the beginning (no careless mistakes!), but fast enough to finish all the questions.

mcelroytutoring,

When you say, on Quant, its all about managing the algorithm, what do you think about GMAT(Verbal)?
Do the first few questions in Verbal not have as much importance as in Quant?
It would be great to know what are your thoughts about the Verbal Section.
What do you think is needed to maximize the score in Verbal, if one had a a poor sub-section(example: Critical Reasoning)

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Joined: 10 Jul 2015
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Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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Updated on: 12 Sep 2017, 15:00
1
Top Contributor
pushpitkc wrote:
mcelroytutoring,

When you say, on Quant, its all about managing the algorithm, what do you think about GMAT(Verbal)?
Do the first few questions in Verbal not have as much importance as in Quant?
It would be great to know what are your thoughts about the Verbal Section.
What do you think is needed to maximize the score in Verbal, if one had a a poor sub-section(example: Critical Reasoning)

Unfortunately, I've found that on Verbal, the adaptive scoring algorithm doesn't matter nearly as much. Although the test is still adaptive, your Verbal score is more of a direct reflection of the total number of questions that you answer incorrectly.

Some rough estimates for Verbal scores, for example, based on ESRs that I've seen and analyzed so far:

0 wrong = 51
1 wrong = 48
2 wrong = 46-47
3 wrong = 45-46
4 wrong = 43-44
5 wrong = 40-42
6 wrong = 36-40
7 wrong = 33-39
8 wrong = 30-38
9 wrong = 28-37
10 wrong = 26-36

Etc.

_________________

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One of the only known humans to have taken the GMAT 5 times and scored in the 700s every time (700, 710, 730, 750, 770), including verified section scores of Q50 / V47, as well as personal bests of 8/8 IR (2 times), 6/6 AWA (4 times), 50/51Q and 48/51V (1 question wrong).

You can download my official test-taker score report (all scores within the last 5 years) directly from the Pearson Vue website: https://tinyurl.com/y8zh6qby Date of Birth: 09 December 1979.

GMAT Action Plan and Free E-Book - McElroy Tutoring

Originally posted by mcelroytutoring on 12 Sep 2017, 09:18.
Last edited by mcelroytutoring on 12 Sep 2017, 15:00, edited 1 time in total.
BSchool Forum Moderator
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Posts: 2831
Location: India
GPA: 3.12
Re: Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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12 Sep 2017, 10:12
mcelroytutoring wrote:
pushpitkc wrote:
mcelroytutoring,

When you say, on Quant, its all about managing the algorithm, what do you think about GMAT(Verbal)?
Do the first few questions in Verbal not have as much importance as in Quant?
It would be great to know what are your thoughts about the Verbal Section.
What do you think is needed to maximize the score in Verbal, if one had a a poor sub-section(example: Critical Reasoning)

Unfortunately, I've found that on Verbal, the adaptive scoring algorithm doesn't matter nearly as much. Although the test is still adaptive, your Verbal score is more of a direct reflection of the total number of questions that you answer incorrectly.

Some rough estimates for Verbal scores, for example, based on ESRs that I've seen and analyzed so far:

0 wrong = 51
1 wrong = 48-49
2 wrong = 46-47
3 wrong = 45-46
4 wrong = 43-44
5 wrong = 40-42
6 wrong = 36-40
7 wrong = 33-39
8 wrong = 30-38
9 wrong = 28-37
10 wrong = 26-36

Etc.

Thanks a ton for the quick revert, sir
Why is there such a major range when you get more than 6 questions wrong?
Does this have anything to do with the placement of the mistakes you make during the test?

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Director
Status: Professional GMAT Tutor
Affiliations: AB, cum laude, Harvard University (Class of '02)
Joined: 10 Jul 2015
Posts: 646
Location: United States (CA)
Age: 38
GMAT 1: 770 Q47 V48
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Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image) [#permalink]

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12 Sep 2017, 17:08
Top Contributor
pushpitkc wrote:
Thanks a ton for the quick revert, sir
Why is there such a major range when you get more than 6 questions wrong?
Does this have anything to do with the placement of the mistakes you make during the test?

Happy to help!

When you only get a small handful of questions wrong, the algorithm doesn't care that much where they are located. However, if you get a lot of questions wrong at the beginning of the test (medium/easy difficulty), then you will receive a lower score than if you get a lot of questions wrong at the end (medium/hard difficulty).

_________________

Harvard grad and 99% GMAT scorer, offering expert, private GMAT tutoring and coaching, both in-person (San Diego, CA, USA) and online worldwide, since 2002.

One of the only known humans to have taken the GMAT 5 times and scored in the 700s every time (700, 710, 730, 750, 770), including verified section scores of Q50 / V47, as well as personal bests of 8/8 IR (2 times), 6/6 AWA (4 times), 50/51Q and 48/51V (1 question wrong).

You can download my official test-taker score report (all scores within the last 5 years) directly from the Pearson Vue website: https://tinyurl.com/y8zh6qby Date of Birth: 09 December 1979.

GMAT Action Plan and Free E-Book - McElroy Tutoring

Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image)   [#permalink] 12 Sep 2017, 17:08
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# Ordered score report and this test doesn’t seem adaptive at all(image)

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