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Study Strategies for Weak Quant

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Study Strategies for Weak Quant  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Mar 2018, 16:01
Just took the GMAT for the first time with less than stellar results:

Verbal: 37 (83 percentile)
Quant : 31 (20th percentile)
Overall: 570

As you can see, my quant is poor and we’re it not for my higher than average verbal score, this first time would have been a disaster. I got the Kaplan book as well as the Quant official guide, but the timing of the exam definitely bit me this time. Does anyone have some good resources that won’t break the bank for me to bolster that quant score up? Thanks!


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New post 19 Mar 2018, 16:58
I've found that the most time people spend on quant tends to be while staring at questions blankly. Familiarity with question approaches (so you can start working instantly) is really important. My standard method for building familiarity is the use of an error log.

Did you get all the way through the Official Guide?
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New post 19 Mar 2018, 17:00
TrevorKleeTutor wrote:
I've found that the most time people spend on quant tends to be while staring at questions blankly. Familiarity with question approaches (so you can start working instantly) is really important. My standard method for building familiarity is the use of an error log.

Did you get all the way through the Official Guide?


I almost did. I found that I really struggled not to just automatically look at the answers/explanation for every question after about halfway through. The timing also wasn’t practiced enough. I was only on Q24 with 5 minutes to go. Bad.


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New post 19 Mar 2018, 17:04
Don't be afraid to look at the answers and answer explanations! That's what they're there for.

The key, however, is once you look at them, you need to be able to

1. replicate them on a blank sheet of paper
2. understand them

If you can replicate every answer (including the process) of every quant question in the GMAT, you will have a hell of a GMAT score, right?
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New post 19 Mar 2018, 17:07
Yeah, that’s the hope. It’s just amazing how there are people where it comes natural to them. I really didn’t touch Verbal and got a reasonably high score on my first try.


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Re: Study Strategies for Weak Quant  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Mar 2018, 11:39
Hi tvotech92,

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) How long have you studied?
2) What study materials have you used so far?
3) How have you scored on EACH of your CATs (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?

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

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New post 20 Mar 2018, 12:09
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi tvotech92,

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) How long have you studied?
2) What study materials have you used so far?
3) How have you scored on EACH of your CATs (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?

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

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich


Thank you for the reply. So I'll do my best to answer these questions as succinctly and accurately as I can.

1.) Started studying two months ago.

2.) 2015 Kaplan GMAT book, 2017 Official GMAT Quantitative Guide, GMAT Club free online.

3.) This is where I feel my practice was inadequate. I only took two times practice tests on Princeton Review (530 overall. 65 percentile Verbal, 23 percentile quant) and the times GMAT Cub test where I scored 500 with similar thresholds.

4.) Goal score is mid-600s-700

5.) Likely within 3/4 months

6.) Starting the application process now

7.) University of Wisconsin, University of Southern Illinois, University of Texas at Arlington. (I want to work in Marketing Research and these schools have specific programs for it.) Other schools I may consider applying to if I'm feeling ambitious and I tremendously raise my GMAT are Duke and Indiana.

Thanks for all your help!





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Re: Study Strategies for Weak Quant  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Mar 2018, 12:36
Hi tvotech92,

GMAC has publicly stated that the Official Score that you earn on Test Day is within +/- 30 points of actual ability. Assuming a similar 'swing' in how your CATs function, your CAT scores - along with your Official GMAT Score - show that you essentially performed the same each time (around 550 +/- a few points). Many Test Takers spend 3 months (or more) of consistent study time before they hit their 'peak' scores, so since you've studied for just 2 months, there's a reasonable chance that you will naturally improve as you continue to study. That having been said, raising a 570 around 100+ points will likely take at least another 2 months of consistent, guided study. You could conceivably gain all of those missing points in the Quant section, but with your naturally-strong Verbal skills, there are some points to be gained in the Verbal section as well.

Many Test Takers who use a "book heavy" study approach end up getting 'stuck' at a particular score level. Even the best books are limited in what they can teach you; they also can't force you to approach questions in a certain way and their explanations are often one-sided. This is meant to say that you would likely find it beneficial to invest in a GMAT Course of some kind (either Guided Self-Study or instructor-led).

1) Going forward, how many hours do you think you can consistently study each week?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

Rich Cohen

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Re: Study Strategies for Weak Quant  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Mar 2018, 12:45
Excellent points and pretty much spot on with where I'm at. My cousin, currently at Kellogg, took the test 4 times and said he raised his score by at least 50 points by taking Target Test Prep online, which specifically geared towards his weak quant. I think I will consider that as well.

Amazingly, the program director at UW told me to go ahead and apply despite the lower than average score and that we would "discuss the implications of it" when it come to me to talk about financial aid consideration, which to me seems to imply that I am not out of consideration at Wisconsin despite being statistically significantly out of their 20-80 GMAT threshold. I will take that advice with a grain of salt. She also said the committee would likely ask that I retake the GMAT but would give me time to do so in the summer.

I believe I can sufficiently put in at least 10-15 hours per week of study. 2 hours a day, 4/5 hours on a day off from work (I work full time), and a rest day. Would you recommend that?


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