I thought you can only take gmat once/month.
I got a 760 on GMAT today!! This was my second attempt at GMAT. The first time I took GMAT on the 19th of July. My score was 650 (Q49, V29). I "attribute" at least half of the improvement "to" this wonderful forum. (Erin, I don't know if that is correct verbage.) Here is what I did. I don't know if it was right or wrong. So, please make your own judgement before following any of my techniques!!
I live in the USA and I am a 30 yr old engineer (graduate from IIT-B). My math skills have become rusty since I work for an Executive Management Consulting Company as a consultant. (Very little of my work involves any math beyond the elementary scool level.) The same is true of my verbal skills. They are in a bad shape because I travel to Japan frequently and interact with a lot of Japanese people. I have learned to accept the broken and ungrammatic sentences and, as a result, could not distinguish right from wrong in most of the SC questions.
I plan to do an MBA in 2004 fall. I decided to get an early start in the application process by taking the GMAT early. So, I picked the date of July 19th, a week following my planned return from Japan, hoping to get a week or two to prepare for the exam, in addition to the hours of time during the flights.
Unfortunately, nothing worked as planned. I had to delay my return to the 16th, leaving me with only three days for preparation. On top of that, I did not get a chance to take any practice test (the battery of the laptop died on the plane) before the exam because we had some top executives from a client company visit us on 17th and 18th. I had to spend late hours at work. On the night of 18th, I decided to take a test from the POWERPREP software at midnight. I finished the test at 3:30am with a score of 760. However, I wasn't sure if it was a valid score since I knew some of the questions. I only had 4 hours until the test.
On the following day, the day of the first attempt, I got up at 6:00am and left for the test center. (It takes one hour to get there in the morning traffic) The exam started at 8:00am. The AWA was ok. I could not grasp the Analysis of Issue topic. However, I had finalized a structure in my mind. I just followed that template and finished through the essay somehow. The math was easy. However, some probability questions got me working really hard and took a lot of time. As a result, I had to guess on the last 3 questions and I missed 2 questions.
By now, I was really heavy headed from the sleep depravation. The verbal section was tough. I had 4 essays that took a really long time. And I had to guess on the last 10 questions. I decided to look at the score so that I can improve upon my performance next time. The score, a little higher than expected, was 650 (Q 49, V 29). I knew that I had to take GMAT again with much better preparation. I picked a date after one week hoping to have enough time to study and brush up on my concepts.
As luck would have it, we had another delegation of high-level officers of another client company visit us on the weekend. So, I was only left with 3 1/2 days of preparation time.
I knew that I had to focus on Verbal section and brush up on some math concepts (probability specifically). I searched on the Internet for some good study material and was lucky to have found this website. Even though I have not had the opportunity to post answers to the questions (since my verbal is still bad), I have been visiting this forum every few hours since. The SC, CR and RC questions posted on this site are the best one can use for practice (Assumption: They are found to be difficult by the bright students that post regularly on the forum.). Moreover, reading the experiences and the previous test experience helped me form my strategy for the second attempt.
This time, I bought the "Kaplan GMAT 800" book, looked at the different types of problems, and studied the reference and explanations provided by Erin on this site. I refreshed my probability concepts from the Advanced Engineering Mathematics book, and took the tests from Kaplan CD as well as the POWERPREP. My scores ranged between 670 - 720 for Kaplan. I had saved the POWERPREP for the last day. The POWERPREP score was a morale-booster 800!! However, I knew a few of the questions from reading them on the forum.
Today, on the day of the exam, the AWA was breeze (though I have no basis to compare/guess what my score is going to be). The math was quite easy especially since I had refreshed my basic concepts a few times. I could finish the math section with about 10 minutes to spare. I knew that I had made one mistake in that section. Unfortunately I could not go back. Instead of letting the 10 minutes pass by, I started listing the things that I should watch out for in the SC/CR sections (e.g. subject-verb, antecedent-pronoun, etc) on the scratch paper. Expecting four essay questions to appear, I made a table of 4x5 cells to note Theme, Tone, Structure and reference to "Complex Words". I think this preparation helped me in the Verbal section. As I read the SC/CR questions, I quickly went down the list to isolate the problem to a specific type. Finding an answer was quite easy once I knew the problem type. One of the essays was 75-80 lines of difficult, ugly, and boring Black literature discussion (May God instruct the test-makers not to include such passages!!). English being my "third language" back in high-school, I could not have read the passage in a reasonable time. (My reading speed is extremely slow.) So, I focused on the first and the last paragraphs and the first line of the paragraphs in between. I guessed the answers to the questions that were not directly answered in those lines. After that, it was quite smooth. I got 2 bold face questions. I wonder if any site or prep material offers practice questions for bold-face questions. Other essays were easy especially since they came from economics and science.
Here are the scores in detail: -
Total 760 - 99%
Q 50 - 96% (I would have liked it to be higher)
V 41 - 93% (I think the long essay took the 6% out!!) ;-)
Just kidding. I am happy to get this score. Even though I think I can do better, I am not going to spend any more energy on GMAT, unless I have to, since I think GMAT truly measures neither the Math nor the Verbal skills.
Now, I have a few questions that I hope someone will answer. Is it true that ETS reports all scores to the business schools? Do the schools average the score or pick the highest / lowest? If they average it, then I am forced to take the GMAT again for at least 2-3 times to make up for the first time screw up. What do you folks recommend?
Thank you for this wonderful site and a great forum. I hope to respond to some questions when I get a chance. However, I fear that I may end up misguiding people since my Verbal is not good.
i also think so..
u can visit this site
You may take the Graduate Management Admission TestŪ (GMATŪ) no more than once in any calendar month and no more than five times within a 12-month period.
They have asked me to take the test again (of course, no refund.) !! I feel so angry, especially since I had scheduled my exams through their website!! Can't they put a simple check to warn/prevent this situation. Of course it wouldn't help their finance department, would it? Anyway, I am taking the exam again on the 1st, hoping to do better.
This is me again!! I just came back from my third GMAT (officially second) attempt. Got a 760 - 99% again (Q50 - 96%, V42 - 93%). I was hoping to do better this time. Also, I don't understand how my score did not improve despite a point increase in the verbal score. Ironically, I felt that I had done worse than the last time after I had completed the verbal section. Anyway, I am happy for now with the score!!
Here are the things that I did this time: -
I took a week off from work to study.
I bought a bunch of books Princeton Review (Verbal Only), Arco's, Kaplan Verbal. I think categorizing of questions helped a little. I bought a little style guide that explains the rules of writing and common mistakes. Of course, I was going through all the types of questions that I could get my hands on including those on this forum and those from the books, and made my notes. I figured that my common mistake was second-guessing myself. Not only did it consume more time, but also increased the chances of making a mistake. I crammed until late last night to review the notes and go through the essay topics in order to make sure that there wasn't an essay topic, of which I did not know the meaning. So, before going in for the exam, I had decided on the strategy as follows: -
1) Attack each question as if it came from a person I don't like ;-)
2) Make sure to read the question (in case of RC/CR) before reading the stimulus.
3) Skim through the RC passage if it is more than 50 lines. Read only the first and the last paragraph and then figure out the rest. I had one RC question that was 75 lines. It had 6 questions. So, I ended-up reading the whole passage (thus, lost time)
4) DS - make sure to check the words (e.g. positive, integer) as well as exclusion of words (e.g. not specifying that a number is an integer).
5) Read the chapter on basic parts that constitute an argument from Kaplan verbal book. It is simple and nice. This helped me for the bold face questions (There were 2 of them).
The AWA was usual. I just had to keep myself motivated through the AWA to make sure that I was alert. BTW, my previous AWA score came in the mail yesterday. It was 6.0 - 97%. My strategy for AWA has been simple. Keep the essays simple and to the point, and do not make any grammatical / structural errors.
The math was easy. Although I thought that I had solved each question correctly, there must have been a question that fooled me. There was a question based on a graph. (Easy though) I hadn't expected it. I could finish Math section about 9 minutes to spare. I followed the same process as before and used the time to get ready for the Verbal section. I thought that I had done better in math this time. (Unfortunately, the score did not reflect that)
The Verbal started off with SC (not simple). The second one was a long passage. After that difficult start, things got much easier. However, I think that I must have made at least one mistake in the early questions since I had to guess on the long passage. So, I don't know how important the early questions are... On the other hand, I tried to complete the verbal section within the time. However, a CR got me thinking... and took time in addition to the RC that already consumed more time than its share. I remember the question but can't post it here because of the confidentiality agreement. I had to guess on the last 3 questions. BTW, there was one question that had an empty "it" in the correct choice. However, it was much simpler than the one posted on this site.
Here are things I would recommend: -
I think a big difference between when I got lousy score and when I got good scores is the attitude. The first time, I was hesitant. The last two times, I could feel the rush!! So, attitude does make a big difference.
Stick to the strategy that you make. Last minute changes are not good.
Read the questions very carefully. Especially in the math section.
Try to find short-cuts for math questions. Almost all questions have an easy way and a difficult way to solve them. I wish I could give some interesting examples. If I did so, the GMAC officials, who are most likely already mad at me for taking the test twice in one month, will make sure to terminate my scores for good!! There are some examples of short-cuts in the explanation to the POWERPREP answers.
Trust your ears. If something doesn't sound right, don't spend too much time analyzing it. Go with your gut feel. English is not my first language. However, I have been in the US for almost 10 years. So, I don't know if this is valid recommendation for people whose native language is not english and who have not spent much time in an english speaking environment.
Anyway, I hope to contribute to the forum when I get a chance. To a few of you who have contacted me, let's keep in touch and we may be classmates in one of the schools. (I haven't yet decided where I want to go.) I need to find a school that helps me grow my business. I don't need a school that is going to teach me a lot of theory and statistics. (I can buy a book instead of spending 100K+, in addition to the loss of two year's earnings)
Finally, when I saw my official score card, it is clear to me that the previous score of 650 can be bumped off only if I take the GMAT two more times. I don't know if the efforts are worth the benefits. I don't want to be in the constant mode of preparing for GMAT.
I think that this site is really nice. I thank all the guys who post their questions here. Erin does a wonderful job of explaining the grammar and keeping the positive attitude here. The site needs more contributors like him.
Empty "it" is discussed on another SC question in this forum. Basically, I believe empty "it" refers to an "it" with no antecedent. E.g.
It was raining.
The question in discussion had a sentence as follows : -
Although it has not proved that the consumption of any particular foods will reverse hardening of the arteries, studies indicate that refraining from eating certain foods can
The "it" in this sentence is what Erin called empty "it".
congrats !! hell of a improvement frm your previous score.. So u graduated from IIT-B , a city mate not very long ago
JUst puzzled with one thing.. i saw the same 50, 41 breakup giving 740, 750 and now 760 score , within a period of 5 months!! if i remem 50 thn was 95 percentile.. seems it has gone up !
anyways, dnt think much and enjoy the success
--Attitude defines Altitude--
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