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Test Taking Strategy

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Intern
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Joined: 19 May 2013
Posts: 7

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Test Taking Strategy [#permalink]

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New post 11 Dec 2013, 19:18
I had couple of questions about the scoring system.
Does GMAT increase the grade if you finish early on a section? ( The reason is that I took two GMATprep tests and in both I had only one mistakes in Quant but in one I got 50 and in the other I got 51)
My other question is about the scoring. I looked at my verbal scores and I noticed that the scores are higher when I do not make mistakes in early questions even if I have more mistakes in later questions. On the other hand, for the exams that I made fewer mistakes but even one of them is on early questions my grade was lower.
Is there anyone have any thoughts. I have the exam on friday and your respond could help improving my strategy.

Example (verbal)
Score 42: 7 mistakes Q numbers: 10 18 22 30 34 36 39
Score 42: 8 mistakes Q numbers: 10 14 15 22 23 31 39 41
The odd one:
Score 40: 5 mistakes Q numbers: 3 11 18 19 32


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Magoosh GMAT Instructor
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Joined: 13 Nov 2013
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Re: Test Taking Strategy [#permalink]

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New post 12 Dec 2013, 12:43
I can help! :)

First, let me say something general about GMAT scoring. It is an extremely complex system of scoring that they have in place. And not only is it complex, but also GMAC does not release a whole lot of information about how the algorithms for scoring work. So if you are taking practice tests from test prep companies, their scoring algorithms are trying to approximate the GMAT scoring. Some are better than others. Ultimately, though, the scores are approximations and estimates of your score, not a prediction of your score on test day. So any analysis or information you try to derive from these practice tests is going to be incomplete at best and misleading at worst.

Does GMAT increase the grade if you finish early on a section?
The GMAT does not give your score a bump for finishing early.

I looked at my verbal scores and I noticed that the scores are higher when I do not make mistakes in early questions even if I have more mistakes in later questions. On the other hand, for the exams thatI made fewer mistakes but even one of them is on early questions my grade was lower. Is there anyone have any thoughts.
I have heard about this happening too with other students. I suspect that some of the test prep companies may use this type of algorithm with their scoring. But on the real test, GMAC claims that it does not matter. But this is a myth. There is no difference between answering questions incorrectly late or earlier on the actual GMAT. Here is a solid article on the topic.

Something that will help your score is guessing versus leaving questions blank. GMAC went into quite some detail in this PDF, looking at the difference between the two. I know that you didn't ask about it, but thought it was a useful detail to include. :)

Hope this helps! Good luck on the test! :)
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Kevin Rocci
Magoosh Test Prep

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Re: Test Taking Strategy   [#permalink] 12 Dec 2013, 12:43
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