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Taking GMAT after a long gap

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New post 03 Feb 2019, 21:58
I am finally finishing up a degree after an 8 year gap. I use almost no math in my current job and haven't taken a math class since 2011. I'm attempting a career change to accounting and will need to take the GMAT for admission to an MACC program. Fortunately, none of the programs I'll be applying to will require amazing scores, but my scores will need to be better than they are.

I took a practice test on Veritas- my result was a 560; 35 quant, 33 verbal and my IR was only a 4.

I will be limited to just MACC programs that are online.

Obviously, my quant score is my biggest opportunity. There are things that I simply don't remember. Where is a good place to start reviewing?

Additionally, is the Veritas practice test a decent gauge or should I take a different practice test? I'm not familiar at all with GMAT practice tests, but, I remember for the SAT that some practice tests were really exaggerated.
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New post 03 Feb 2019, 22:38
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Hi jenniferinfl,

The most realistic CATs available are the 6 from GMAC, but the CATs from Kaplan, MGMAT and Veritas are all 'close enough' to the real thing that they will provide you with a relatively realistic score assessment (assuming that you use the CAT correctly). As such, assuming that you took this CAT in a realistic fashion, then your current 'ability level' is likely in the mid-500s.

From what you describe, you might find it beneficial to do some general math practice before you start on your GMAT studies. For free math practice and help, I recommend that you set up an account at Khan Academy (www.khanacademy.org). The site is completely free and makes the learning a bit more fun and 'game-like' (as opposed to the dry academic approach taken by most books). While the site is vast, you should limit your studies to basic Arithmetic, Algebra and Geometry. After spending a little time re-building those skills, you can start your GMAT studies.

Before I can offer you any additional advice, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on your timeline and your goals:

1) Have you done any studying so far are you essentially starting from scratch?
2) What is your goal score?
3) When are you planning to take the GMAT?
4) When are you planning to apply to School?

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New post 03 Feb 2019, 22:46
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New post 04 Feb 2019, 05:38
jenniferinfl wrote:
I am finally finishing up a degree after an 8 year gap. I use almost no math in my current job and haven't taken a math class since 2011. I'm attempting a career change to accounting and will need to take the GMAT for admission to an MACC program. Fortunately, none of the programs I'll be applying to will require amazing scores, but my scores will need to be better than they are.

I took a practice test on Veritas- my result was a 560; 35 quant, 33 verbal and my IR was only a 4.

I will be limited to just MACC programs that are online.

Obviously, my quant score is my biggest opportunity. There are things that I simply don't remember. Where is a good place to start reviewing?

Additionally, is the Veritas practice test a decent gauge or should I take a different practice test? I'm not familiar at all with GMAT practice tests, but, I remember for the SAT that some practice tests were really exaggerated.


Hi jenniferinfl,

Welcome to GMATCLUB! In my experience, Veritas prep Tests are bit more difficult than the actual GMAT but good for practice though. For Quant, You can try out the TTP course as it is phenomenal and covers the entire syllabus really well. Plus it has great reviews on GMATCLUB. I must add that if you are particularly looking to discover and improve on your weak areas in Quant; a subscription to GMATCLUB tests is the best way to do that. They are indeed phenomenal and will not only pinpoint your weak areas but also help you improve on them.

Further taking multiple mocks might help. Apart from the GMATPREP, Manhattan GMAT tests and Veritas Prep Tests in my experience have good verbal and Quant section and will certainly help you point out and improve your weak areas.

Further another advantage of taking many mocks is to build up your stamina. Apart from the GMATPREP tests, taking practice tests of any major GMATPREP company ought to do that.

Lastly I would also encourage you to purchase the latest version of OG and the Quant review for some great additional practice. Here is a link that will help you with your decision.

https://gmatclub.com/forum/best-gmat-ve ... ml?fl=menu

Hope this helps. All the best.
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New post 04 Feb 2019, 10:57
Hi jenniferinfl,

The links for the best books were posted above. I would go through Manhattan prep books, and take a free official mock. There are no super hard math concepts in GMAT, but mainly high school math. You'll have to know the concepts really well though.

The other useful link is here:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/all-you-need ... 40445.html

Hope this helps!
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New post 06 Feb 2019, 20:10
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi jenniferinfl,

The most realistic CATs available are the 6 from GMAC, but the CATs from Kaplan, MGMAT and Veritas are all 'close enough' to the real thing that they will provide you with a relatively realistic score assessment (assuming that you use the CAT correctly). As such, assuming that you took this CAT in a realistic fashion, then your current 'ability level' is likely in the mid-500s.

From what you describe, you might find it beneficial to do some general math practice before you start on your GMAT studies. For free math practice and help, I recommend that you set up an account at Khan Academy. The site is completely free and makes the learning a bit more fun and 'game-like' (as opposed to the dry academic approach taken by most books). While the site is vast, you should limit your studies to basic Arithmetic, Algebra and Geometry. After spending a little time re-building those skills, you can start your GMAT studies.

Before I can offer you any additional advice, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on your timeline and your goals:

1) Have you done any studying so far are you essentially starting from scratch?
2) What is your goal score?
3) When are you planning to take the GMAT?
4) When are you planning to apply to School?

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


I'm working away at Khan Academy- through arithmetic, mostly through pre-algebra. I'm sure geometry will take a lot longer.

I haven't done any studying yet, starting from scratch.
My goal score is a 600 minimum- the college I'll be applying to isn't particularly competitive. It requires a 520 for entrance and >600 for scholarships.
My plan was to test before April 1st so that I have time for a retest if I need it, I will be applying for the Spring 2019-2020 term.
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New post 06 Feb 2019, 22:04
Hi jenniferinfl,

Given your first CAT Score, you could certainly hit a 600+ in the timeframe that you have described - and there are a number of different 'score combinations' that can earn you a 600+, so you won't necessarily need to become that much stronger in the Quant section (unless the Programs that you plan to apply to explicitly require a 'minimum' score in the Quant section).

Based on your current studies, I suggest that after you finish up at Khan Academy that you take a new FULL-LENGTH CAT in a realistic fashion (take the FULL CAT - with the Essay and IR sections, take it away from your home, at the same time of day as when you'll take the Official GMAT, etc.). Once you have that score, you should post back here and we can discuss those results and how best to proceed.

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New post 07 Feb 2019, 12:58
Hi jenniferinfl,

I’m glad you reached out, and I’m happy to help. Believe it or not, 560 is not a bad start! That being said, since you have not seen the math presented on the GMAT in more than 8 years, you need to ensure that you are following a linear and gradual study plan that allows you to individually learn each GMAT quant topic, starting with the foundations before moving to more advanced concepts. For example, let’s 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.

So, work on accuracy and generally finding correct answers, work on specific weaker areas one by one to make them strong areas, and when you take a practice GMAT or the real thing, take all the time per question available to do your absolute best to get right answers consistently. The GMAT is essentially a game of seeing how many right answers you can get in the time allotted. Approach the test with that conception in mind, and focus intently on the question in front of you with one goal in mind: getting a CORRECT answer.

In order to follow the path described above, you may need some new quant materials, so take a look at the GMAT Club reviews for the best quant courses. Also, you should wait to take any further practice exams until you’ve fully developed your quant skills, but when you are ready to resume taking them, I recommend taking the official GMAC practice exams.

Please reach out with any further questions.
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Re: Taking GMAT after a long gap   [#permalink] 07 Feb 2019, 12:58
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