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In 1 month -> 760 (50 Quant, 42 Verbal) - College Senior

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Joined: 13 Apr 2016
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GMAT 1: 760 Q50 V42
GPA: 3.35
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In 1 month -> 760 (50 Quant, 42 Verbal) - College Senior [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 14 Apr 2016, 11:10
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First off, here is a little background about me before I tell the story of my GMAT experience. I am currently a senior at Vanderbilt University, majoring in Economics with a minor in Corporate Strategy. I spent most of my first semester this year applying to jobs, going through phone call after phone call and interview after interview until, one day, I received an email informing me of my acceptance to an entry-level Management Consulting job in NYC. A dream come true, I thought I would be able to coast through the rest of senior year, putting minimal work into my studies and maximum work into enjoying my last months in college. I began hearing around school that a bunch of students were studying to take the GMAT. Like me, most of the other students had already received offers to work full-time upon graduation. I began to consider the pros and cons of signing up for the test.

My logic in deciding to take the GMAT was the following: as a college senior with a job lined up next year, I don’t have many other pressing commitments to dedicate my time to, and the fact that the score lasts for 5 years would give me flexibility to decide to go to business school at any point in the next few years. If ever wanted to attend business school in the future, how easy would it be if I already had a solid GMAT score and did not have to spend time balancing work and studying in order to achieve the score I wanted! It just made so much sense; my freedom from other obligations coupled with the length of time that the GMAT score lasts gave me every reason to take it while still in college.

I have always been a strong standardized test taker, which is why I did not feel the need to begin prepping for the GMAT months in advance. I figured that I would order the book online, spend a month studying, go in relatively blind, and succeed. Boy was I wrong. The first time I opened the book, I had no clue how to solve many of the math problems. Data sufficiency? Where do I even start? And math had always been my strong suit!

I spent two weeks studying and decided to take my first full GMAT practice exam 2 weeks before the test. I wound up getting a 700, which I know is a very good score. To be completely honest, I have never been satisfied with doing good or great, particularly when I am in a situation where I know I can excel. I wanted to shoot for the stars, and I set my personal limit for retesting at a 730. I know that many of you reading this may feel like this doesn't apply to you because of the disparity between my score goals and yours, but this situation can be applied to anybody taking the GMAT if you think about it relatively.

Here I was, only ten days before my test, with enough free time to dedicate towards my goal, yet no idea how to fulfill it. I decided to begin my search online, and emailed a few different tutors I found. By far, the most professional individual I encountered was Jeffrey Miller, the COO of Target Test Prep. He walked me through the program, and asked me to take a diagnostic test in order to gauge my current level. It was immediately clear that this guy was the real deal, and that the program would help me achieve my goals.

I began to religiously use Target Test Prep, a website that successfully breaks the math subjects into chapters, allowing a student to relearn each concept successfully. Every day, I would take around 10 of the hundreds of chapter tests offered. I would read the chapters if I was unfamiliar with a specific subject, and take test after test until I began to knock out each concept one by one. It was not easy at first, and I had to put my ego behind me and take the Medium-level tests before moving onto the Hard-level ones. Lesson by lesson, however, I knew I was getting more comfortable with the material.

When I was not doing the Quant practice tests on Target Test Prep, I was doing verbal practice through the GMAT Prep Software or using the Official Guide. After only 3 days of studying through the website, I decided to take another practice test (keep in mind this is only 5 days after the original one, and 4 days before the official GMAT test). I felt way more comfortable as I methodically broke down each Quant problem using the strategies I learned. Once I submitted the practice test and saw a 740 pop up on the screen, I knew the combination of my hard work and the TTP program had worked. Over the next two days, I studied tirelessly, giving myself a full days rest on the day before the exam. ("If I'm cramming the day before the GMAT, I've done something wrong", I told myself).

I went into the exam feeling nervous and anxious to get it over with. I had conflicting dreams the night before. In some, I would see a 750 upon completion of the test, and rejoice excitedly; in others, a 620 highlighted the screen and I felt like I had failed. "Never mind", I told myself. "Whatever happens, happens." I shook off my nerves and drove to the test center, filling out the required forms before taking my assigned seat and beginning the test. As I came back from the break before the Quant section, I continued to tell myself that I had prepared sufficiently, and that any question that came my way would be answered efficiently and successfully. The ability to control your nerves and put yourself in a positive mindset is half the battle. I finished the Quant section, feeling good about how I had done, and moved on to the Verbal. I felt so accomplished upon completing the test and seeing that 760 on the screen, I almost fell out of the chair in excitement.

Looking back, the biggest advice I could give are the following:
1. If you decide to take the GMAT, learn everything about how the test is structured, how the scoring works, and how to submit/cancel your scores. Do not wait until a few days before to look into the ins and outs of the test.
2. The only way to get better at the Quant section is to methodically learn how to solve the problems and have a system for doing so. Blindly attempting to solve each problem without a plan will keep you from getting the score you want.
3. Do not put much effort into the Analytical Writing Assignment. If you can read a paragraph and write a few paragraphs reflecting on it, you are in a good spot.
4. If you do not know how to solve a problem, and you begin to get nervous as you see the clock ticking, try to make an educated guess. Wasting too much time on one problem that you will probably get wrong anyways will detract from your ability to handle later problems that come your way.
5. If you are going to spend the money to take the GMAT, do it right. Don't put in half of your effort and hope that you will be rewarded by the business Gods. To get the result you want, put in the effort you need.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I really hope that it helps you get the score you want. If it doesn't, keep putting in more work and take the test again. The Target Test Prep software gave me the ability to achieve my goal, and I know that, without the program, I would not have done nearly as well. Different strategies work for different people, but there are specific universal approaches that people can do in order to put themselves in the best position to succeed.

Good luck!


Originally posted by joshuacohen4 on 13 Apr 2016, 17:44.
Last edited by joshuacohen4 on 14 Apr 2016, 11:10, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: In 1 month -> 760 (50 Quant, 42 Verbal) - College Senior [#permalink]

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New post 13 Apr 2016, 23:12
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Hi Buddy,
If I give your run down as a part of Critical Reasoning question in Verbal and ask them
" In your view who is the author in most likelihood"

A) genuine student who genuinly wants you to do well
B) A TTP representative
C) A disgruntled student taking others in a path which he regrets
D) A sportsperson
E) A fiction writer

In all probability, it will be Sub-600 Q, as Overwhelmingly students will pick up B as the answer..

No Offence to your institute, you guys may be the best or second best or 10th best, but the marketing does not seem to be too well.
Show your pesence with your knowledge, But do not land in OUR forum just to sell something and vanish in half hour..

One more review from your rep is attached--

Absolute modulus :
Combination of similar and dissimilar things :

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Re: In 1 month -> 760 (50 Quant, 42 Verbal) - College Senior [#permalink]

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New post 06 May 2016, 10:50
Hey you got such good scores under 1 month with such a limited hectic time. Can you tell us do the TTP charted your every part of preparation
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Re: In 1 month -> 760 (50 Quant, 42 Verbal) - College Senior [#permalink]

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New post 25 Jan 2018, 12:33
Hello from the GMAT Club BumpBot!

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Re: In 1 month -> 760 (50 Quant, 42 Verbal) - College Senior   [#permalink] 25 Jan 2018, 12:33
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In 1 month -> 760 (50 Quant, 42 Verbal) - College Senior

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