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The more I study, the worse my mock scores

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Intern
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Joined: 15 Apr 2017
Posts: 3
The more I study, the worse my mock scores [#permalink]

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New post 15 Apr 2017, 03:25
Hi everyone,

I've been following the forum for a few months now.

My background: I completed the full MGMAT set of books, the OG (although didn't complete Verbal as I felt my Verbal score was ok), and the MGMAT Advanced Quant. My target score is 720 (which seemed attainable at first). Lately, the more I studied, the worse my scores seemed to get.

Here are my scores:
1. GMATPrep 1: 690, Q45, V39, IR4
2. MGMAT 1: 680, Q44, V38, didn't do IR
3. LBS GMAT mock: 710, Q48, V41, no IR component
4. Kaplan free mock: 710, Q48, V40, IR1
5. Veritas Prep free mock: 680, Q47, V37, IR5
6. GMATPill mock: 610, Q35, V38, IR4
7. MGMAT 2: 670, Q39, V42, IR2
8. MGMAT 3: 620, Q45, V31, IR2

Although my scores are in the 600 range, the scores for individual components fluctuate greatly (more so than my mood swings!).

Generally, my Quant score is average (although two atrociously bad Quant scores for GMATPill and MGMAT 2 have really shaken my confident). My weakest areas in Quant are Word Problems (especially those concerning speeds/rates and combinatorics). I get a mini panic attack every time I see a problem that is over 3 lines long.

I thought my Verbal was good until I took the MGMAT 3 and scored an upsetting V31. In normal circumstances, I would have written it off as an outlier, but seeing as my scores kept dipping, my traitorous mind tells me I'm getting stupider by the day.

Now here comes the elephant in the room... The IR! As you can see, my IR scores are atrocious (I've run out of adjectives to describe my scores - sorry!). Seeing as my Quant and Verbal scores are on average quite ok (if you discount the outliers), I would expect my IR to be in the 60th percentile... What's frustrating is that I always got 2 out of 3 parts of a question right, resulting in 0 credit. Also, for some reason, I took very long to comprehend the questions, panicked when I had to do multiple calculations to arrive at an answer, and sometimes just simply gave up.

With such a huge range between my best and worst scores (Q between 35 and 48, V between 31 and 42, and IR between 1 and 5), I can't effectively gauge the level I am at. At this point, part of me knows I should take GMATPrep 2 as it is the most accurate indicator of my ability, but I am saving it for later.

Has anyone had a similar experience? If so, how do you bounce back? Part of me believes that my problems are mostly mental (unable to bounce back mid-test and panic at lots of data, esp. in IR and Quant sections). Can anyone offer some advice?

G-Day is in June. Thanks in advance!
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Re: The more I study, the worse my mock scores [#permalink]

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New post 15 Apr 2017, 10:30
Hi wwwinnnnn,

Since there are some serious fluctuations in these CAT scores, and these results have come from a variety of 3rd party CAT providers, we really need to see how you perform on an Official CAT taken under the proper conditions. As such, I strongly recommend that you take one of the Official GMAT CATs and take it 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 report back here and we can discuss how best to proceed.

A June Test Date gives you plenty of time to continue studying and improving, but you have to be efficient about how you study and rigorous about you take your CATs.

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

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Cesar: Cesar
Concentration: Finance, Strategy
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Re: The more I study, the worse my mock scores [#permalink]

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New post 15 Apr 2017, 16:46
I think you problem is confidence. You need to build your confidence on GMAT. For doing that, you need to be able to identify where you did good and where you did wrong on your practice tests. Focus on your weakness and dont repeat the same mistakes. On the test day dont think about the entire GMAT, just focus on the question that you are trying to solve.


Good luck.
Intern
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Joined: 15 Apr 2017
Posts: 3
Re: The more I study, the worse my mock scores [#permalink]

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New post 15 Apr 2017, 18:06
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi wwwinnnnn,

Since there are some serious fluctuations in these CAT scores, and these results have come from a variety of 3rd party CAT providers, we really need to see how you perform on an Official CAT taken under the proper conditions. As such, I strongly recommend that you take one of the Official GMAT CATs and take it 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 report back here and we can discuss how best to proceed.

A June Test Date gives you plenty of time to continue studying and improving, but you have to be efficient about how you study and rigorous about you take your CATs.

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

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


Thanks for your response, Rich.

I tried various providers to allow me to analyse my weak areas. As you can see, that totally backfired. Apart from the ones without IR, I took the rest of the CATs in full in the library at the same time of the day. I did the first Official CAT under the same conditions too; that was the first CAT I did (690).

Thanks for your suggestion. I will try resetting the official CAT I did and report back when I've retaken it.

My study capacity during the week is limited (I'd say about 3 hours in total during the week), and around 10 hours during the weekend. I take 1 CAT every fortnight, alternating between going through my error log.
Intern
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Joined: 15 Apr 2017
Posts: 3
Re: The more I study, the worse my mock scores [#permalink]

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New post 15 Apr 2017, 18:15
cesarucv wrote:
I think you problem is confidence. You need to build your confidence on GMAT. For doing that, you need to be able to identify where you did good and where you did wrong on your practice tests. Focus on your weakness and dont repeat the same mistakes. On the test day dont think about the entire GMAT, just focus on the question that you are trying to solve.


Good luck.


You might be right. I know my problems are at least partially psychological.
I analyse every CAT question I did, whether I got it right or wrong. The pain with such fluctuating score is, you never really know which areas to concentrate on. Every section has had at least a 'bad day'. :(
Generally, I focused my efforts on Quant, as my Quant score has never exceeded Q48. I spend less time on Verbal as I had quite a good run until my last CAT.
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Status: GMAT Assassin/Co-Founder
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Joined: 19 Dec 2014
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Location: United States (CA)
GMAT 1: 800 Q51 V49
GRE 1: 340 Q170 V170
Re: The more I study, the worse my mock scores [#permalink]

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New post 16 Apr 2017, 14:06
Hi wwwinnnnn,

Retaking a CAT that you've already taken is NOT realistic - since you're likely to see 'repeat' questions that you already know the answers to. As such, if your goal is to receive a realistic assessment of your skills, then you need to take a NEW CAT that you have not used before.

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

760+: Learn What GMAT Assassins Do to Score at the Highest Levels
Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

Rich Cohen

Co-Founder & GMAT Assassin

Special Offer: Save $75 + GMAT Club Tests Free
  Official GMAT Exam Packs + 70 Pt. Improvement Guarantee
www.empowergmat.com/

***********************Select EMPOWERgmat Courses now include ALL 6 Official GMAC CATs!***********************

Re: The more I study, the worse my mock scores   [#permalink] 16 Apr 2017, 14:06
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The more I study, the worse my mock scores

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