|All Reviews > Manhattan Prep GMAT > Manhattan Prep GMAT Manhattan GMAT 9-Session In-Person Prep Course > Review Comments|
Joined: Feb 19, 2019
740 Q49 V42
Improvement 140 Points
Instructor Mark Sullivan
Location Seattle, WA USA
I signed up for this class at the beginning of 2019 after doing quite a bit of research on the course and the instructor, Mark Sullivan. Like many prospective GMAT takers, I had tried (and failed) the self-study route on multiple occasions. When I finally decided to get serious about taking the GMAT and going to business school, I knew that I needed professional guidance. What really sold me on Mark was the fact that according his Manhattan Prep bio, he was a self-confessed Seattle Mariners fan. As a Seattle native and long-suffering M's fan myself, I knew I had found my instructor.
All jokes aside, I realized shortly into the first in-person session that I had made the right choice. Mark has the unique ability to keep students engaged and excited about GMAT content throughout the 3-hour classes. It had been several years since I had been in a classroom environment; at first, the idea sitting through a session that long seemed daunting. But Mark breaks down each topic by using easy-to-digest examples and explanations, and I left every session feeling inspired to study on my own. My winter class had 7 students, and we were able to work with each other (without pressure) each week to tackle problems and collaborate on various subject areas.
I scored a 600 on my first practice test, which I took a week before the course started. It was demoralizing. However, Mark reassured me that my "stretch" target score of 730 was still attainable if I put in the effort. For me, the key was the way in which Mark guided our studying. Instead of assigning hundreds of practice problems, Mark showed the class how to focus on a particular set of problems and subsequently evaluate the strategies we used during the set. As a result, you learn how to identify problem types and solve them in a much more efficient manner, rather than blindly trying to solve as many questions as possible.
I never needed to cram for the test, nor did I ever feel like I was drowning in my GMAT studies. I studied for about an hour each day outside of the course--consistency is key, rather than trying to put in 4 to 6 hour days on the weekends. The course ended in early April, and I took the GMAT in mid-May. I highly recommend purchasing the add-on 1-on-1 "coaching sessions" with Mark, as those really helped me hyper-target areas of opportunity before my exam date.
In the end, I got a 740 on the GMAT, a full 140 points higher than my initial diagnostic test. Without Mark's wisdom and coaching, there's no way I would've reached my target score. For the sake of brevity, I'll finish my review by stating that this course opened up doors to MBA programs that I previously thought were closed. Thank you, Mark!