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Joined: Aug 23, 2015
710 Q47 V41
So.. Gave my GMAT on 6th Nov 2015. This was my 3rd attempt and hence I knew in my heart that this time I have to crack that 700+ mark and aim for a high score. My previous attempts fared like this:
Attempt 1: 590 (Q 42, V 29)
Attempt 2: 650 (Q 47, V 32)
Finally in the 3rd attempt scored a 710 (Q 47, V 41, AWA- 6, IR-5). While I was hoping for a 730+ (and honestly could have done better in quant) I was nonetheless quite happy with my performance.
I started my prep for 3rd attempt around August 2015 (wanted to start early but hectic work schedule did not allow that ). Below I have tried to list out some steps I followed during my 3 months of prep for GMAT.
1) before i started my prep, I decided to reflect back on my performance. Clearly, Verbal section was a challenge for me and I needed to put in lot of efforts to increase my verbal score. Being a non native speaker made it even more difficult to understand and grasp the verbal concepts.
That is where e-gmat came into picture. After doing a lot of research, reading through forums, and talking to people I decided to attend few free verbal sessions offered by e-gmat. I found their teaching methods highly methodical yet simplistic and felt that e-gmat might be the right choice for me to work on my verbal skills. With that in mind I enrolled for their Verbal Online course (even verbal live prep is very good but for me self studying works better). As it turns out, this was one of the best decisions I had ever taken in my approach towards gmat preparation. The modules offered by them are nicely structured for all 3 sections.
SC was always my strength but I used to make some critical mistakes on the 700+ questions. E-gmat's 3 step approach to solving SC questions made life much easier. I realised that by simply focussing on the meaning of the sentence there was a lot that could be unraveled regarding the sentence structure. Once I got a hang of it I stopped relying on my ear and started focussing on the meaning of the sentences to get through a sentence correctly.
CR was a challenge for me during my past attempts. A huge challenge. After enrolling in the e-gmat course I realise why it was so. I had missed out on the most important aspect of CR q's- PRE-THINKING!! Pre-thinking in CR q's is a non-negotiable according to me. Once you start to pre-think the underlying assumptions that the passage has, half the battle is already won. E-gmat's module teaches you to excel this skill through it's well structured modules. From a 30-40% accuracy in CR to a 100 % accuracy on actual test (source- enhanced score report) is no mean feat and understanding a cr argument, breaking it down to it's simplest form, and pre-thinking assumptions is something that comes in handy very single time.
RC - they key to excel in this section is to NOT GET BORED while reading a passage. That is most important. Losing your interest in what the passage is talking about affects your RC performance deeply. Practice as much as u can without worrying about time spent per passage (initially). read editorial sections from newspapers to get a hang of complicated language and sentence structures.
Also the scholaranium tool offered by E-gmat comes very handy. You can track your performance on a regular basis and the tool offers a huge question bank.
2) Created an air tight daily schedule for my prep and followed it without fail. reviewed my performance weekly and noted down concepts/ q types that I still needed to work on. This step is very important. There are so many different topics to cover (both in quant and verbal ) that If you do not have a plan in mind then you can easily lose track and end up messing your entire preparation.
3) For quant I used OG and Magoosh course. Magoosh again is a very helpful course specially for quant section. The modules are really helpful and Magoosh also offers an extremely helpful question bank.
Also I cannot stress enough on how important OG is when preparing for GMAT. Official guide questions can often give you insight into every single concept that can be tested on gmat so make OG your first check point towards GMAT.
4) Tests - GMAT prep (best possible source. very accurate and reliable). MGMAT tests- another useful source. the 6 CAT's allow for good practice and even the scoring algorithm is close enough to the real GMAT.
But the most important aspect to success in GMAT is patience. GMAT is no rocket science. More than anything it is a test of your nerves. all the prep that you put in boils down to just one thing- how well can you manage the stress levels during your actual test. Make no mistake that the most important aspect the test likes to explore is your ability to understand the logic behind questions under a stressed environment.
All the best !