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Test 1 350 - Test 2 510 - Goal of 580+

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Intern
Joined: 03 Feb 2020
Posts: 3
Test 1 350 - Test 2 510 - Goal of 580+  [#permalink]

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24 Feb 2020, 05:44
Hi there all,

My first diagnostic in January gave me a cold score of 350.

I have taken a test today and my score is up to 510.

A 160 point improvement in a month.

I will be taking the GMAT on the 23rd of April and I need a score above 550 for admission to the business school of my choice?

Does anyone have any tips or strategies for gaining these 70 points in 2 months?
Tutor
Joined: 16 May 2019
Posts: 500
Test 1 350 - Test 2 510 - Goal of 580+  [#permalink]

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24 Feb 2020, 07:46
1
Asheks wrote:
Hi there all,

My first diagnostic in January gave me a cold score of 350.

I have taken a test today and my score is up to 510.

A 160 point improvement in a month.

I will be taking the GMAT on the 23rd of April and I need a score above 550 for admission to the business school of my choice?

Does anyone have any tips or strategies for gaining these 70 points in 2 months?

Hello, Asheks. First of all, congratulations on a fine improvement. However, I think your math is a little off in the last part. The points gain from your current 510 to a 550 is 40, and even if I take above 550 at face value, that still means an increase of more than 40 points. How did you arrive at 70? (Edit: I just noticed again the title of the post. Your math is fine. My reading, apparently, was not.)

I am not responding to be a smart-aleck or anything. To continue to gain ground, you should keep brushing up on your core knowledge of the concepts tested and continue to practice high-quality questions to solidify what you are learning. You are clearly doing something right to make such a gain in one month. Yes, at some point during this next month, you will want to cross the 550 threshold to give yourself a little peace of mind, and yes, the biggest improvements are typically made in the beginning--progression is rarely linear from start to finish, unless there is a restricted prep timeline--so you will not likely jump another 160 points in the next month. But that does not mean you should lose hope. It will be helpful to consider the following (sooner rather than later):

- What is your source of practice questions? An OG? An online question bank?
- How are you performing on Easy, Medium, and Hard questions across the board (PS, DS, RC, CR, SC)?

It is okay to work a little slower in the earlier prep phase than a strict 2-minutes-per-problem cutoff on test day might have you believe. More errors occur when people work faster, and I can think of no wonder-human exception, myself included. I would emphasize accuracy first, timing second. When you pair the two through enough practice, you start to work toward efficiency, the real goal.

Good luck with your studies. If you have further questions, feel free to ask.

- Andrew
Intern
Joined: 03 Feb 2020
Posts: 3
Re: Test 1 350 - Test 2 510 - Goal of 580+  [#permalink]

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24 Feb 2020, 08:18
Thank you for responding, currently I am making use of Magoosh and the OG exclusively.

My score breakdown was Q29 and V31 - my goal for verbal is V35, the issue here is clearly the quant (sequences, geometry and probability are an issue) as picked up in my error log.

Practice questions are coming from the OG, Magoosh and the GMAT Club.

As reflected in the score, in terms of Quant, I am getting most easy and some medium right, hard and very hard are out of range in most cases.

In terms of Verbal, I am only getting hard and very hard questions wrong (across all areas) apart from reading comprehension where I seem to struggle.

MentorTutoring wrote:
Asheks wrote:
Hi there all,

My first diagnostic in January gave me a cold score of 350.

I have taken a test today and my score is up to 510.

A 160 point improvement in a month.

I will be taking the GMAT on the 23rd of April and I need a score above 550 for admission to the business school of my choice?

Does anyone have any tips or strategies for gaining these 70 points in 2 months?

Hello, Asheks. First of all, congratulations on a fine improvement. However, I think your math is a little off in the last part. The points gain from your current 510 to a 550 is 40, and even if I take above 550 at face value, that still means an increase of more than 40 points. How did you arrive at 70? (Edit: I just noticed again the title of the post. Your math is fine. My reading, apparently, was not.)

I am not responding to be a smart-aleck or anything. To continue to gain ground, you should keep brushing up on your core knowledge of the concepts tested and continue to practice high-quality questions to solidify what you are learning. You are clearly doing something right to make such a gain in one month. Yes, at some point during this next month, you will want to cross the 550 threshold to give yourself a little peace of mind, and yes, the biggest improvements are typically made in the beginning--progression is rarely linear from start to finish, unless there is a restricted prep timeline--so you will not likely jump another 160 points in the next month. But that does not mean you should lose hope. It will be helpful to consider the following (sooner rather than later):

- What is your source of practice questions? An OG? An online question bank?
- How are you performing on Easy, Medium, and Hard questions across the board (PS, DS, RC, CR, SC)?

It is okay to work a little slower in the earlier prep phase than a strict 2-minutes-per-problem cutoff on test day might have you believe. More errors occur when people work faster, and I can think of no wonder-human exception, myself included. I would emphasize accuracy first, timing second. When you pair the two through enough practice, you start to work toward efficiency, the real goal.

Good luck with your studies. If you have further questions, feel free to ask.

- Andrew
Tutor
Joined: 16 May 2019
Posts: 500
Re: Test 1 350 - Test 2 510 - Goal of 580+  [#permalink]

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24 Feb 2020, 09:35
Asheks wrote:
Thank you for responding, currently I am making use of Magoosh and the OG exclusively.

My score breakdown was Q29 and V31 - my goal for verbal is V35, the issue here is clearly the quant (sequences, geometry and probability are an issue) as picked up in my error log.

Practice questions are coming from the OG, Magoosh and the GMAT Club.

As reflected in the score, in terms of Quant, I am getting most easy and some medium right, hard and very hard are out of range in most cases.

In terms of Verbal, I am only getting hard and very hard questions wrong (across all areas) apart from reading comprehension where I seem to struggle.

For the target score you are seeking, you are in good hands using Magoosh, the OG, and GMAT Club. Do you mean for the latter that you are completing the Question of the Day, or do you have a subscription? I ask because many high-performing test-takers have said (in their debriefs) that GMAT Club Quant questions helped them prepare for the real test above and beyond the level of difficulty of questions they actually saw on the exam. Based on what you said above, I think you should seek to turn most easy in Quant to almost all Easy, and right-shift that most to Medium and that some to Hard. It is easier said than done, but if you can sort out those lower-level questions, then you will likely hit your mark. If you need to firm up your Quant foundation, I would suggest reading the Ultimate GMAT Quantitative Megathread. Any topic that you need to address is brought up there. As for RC, I would recommend the Ultimate RC Guide for Beginners. It is top-notch advice, and it makes for a good read. Again, I think one of the biggest mistakes students make early on is attempting to constrain their timing--on RC questions especially--to test-day timing. I myself might spend four minutes on a single question, not even the first question of a passage necessarily, if I feel I can even out the average time I am spending per question to around two minutes. Understand the question and responses first, how to approach reading the passages, and work on timing a bit later in the prep process. (The funny thing is, the more questions you start to get right, the less time it will start to take you to solve questions.)

Just keep at it, and find ways to mix up your practice sets or topics to keep your interest up. The test awards the hard work you put into preparing for it.

- Andrew
EMPOWERgmat Instructor
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Location: United States (CA)
GMAT 1: 800 Q51 V49
GRE 1: Q170 V170
Re: Test 1 350 - Test 2 510 - Goal of 580+  [#permalink]

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24 Feb 2020, 12:54
Hi Asheks,

To start, raising a 350 to a 510 is a fantastic achievement! Score improvements on the GMAT are rarely 'linear' though, meaning that the next 70+ points that you're looking for might not be as easy to gain. Thankfully, the GMAT is a consistent, predictable Exam, so you CAN train to score at a higher level. In addition, the 3 Quant areas that you noted (Sequences, Geometry and Probability) are all relatively rare on the GMAT - meaning that you do NOT need to perform at a high level on those categories to hit your Score Goal. There are categories that are far more frequent - and easier to deal with - that you should focus on.

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 in total? How many hours do you typically study each week?
2) What study materials have you used over the course of all of your studies?
3) Are these the only 2 CATs/mocks you have taken or were there any others?
4) What application deadlines are you currently facing?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Re: Test 1 350 - Test 2 510 - Goal of 580+  [#permalink]

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24 Feb 2020, 19:17
1
Hi Asheks,

160 point improvement in just one month is great, so nice job! Regarding how to move forward, since you mentioned that quant is weaker than verbal, I can provide some general advice on how to improve your GMAT quant skills. Since your current quant score is Q29, it’s clear that you need to follow a study plan that allows you to learn GMAT quant from the ground up. In other words, follow a study plan that allows you to learn each GMAT quant topic individually and then practice each topic until you’ve gained mastery. Let me expand on this idea further.

For example, if you are learning about Number Properties, 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.

Feel free to reach out with further questions.

Good luck!
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Re: Test 1 350 - Test 2 510 - Goal of 580+   [#permalink] 24 Feb 2020, 19:17
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