Could any body guide me about improving my verbal score.
Hi All ,
Been reading silently the success stories of couple of our friends who have donned >720, has been a great pleasure to be part of this group.
Would also like to thank Spidy for his fab compilation of notes of SC , Minitests and Idioms. I think this philanthropy of his is helping and will help lots of other future aspirants of GMAT for which my whole hearted thanks to him.
Now back to the test which I took on May 27th i.e 3 days back.
The test overall went very good. I started with Argument and then with issue analysis which wasn't an effort and I din't prepare for it considering the fact that even though English is not my native but having been in Management Consulting for couple of years and having studied in some of the well known private schools in India my English is much better than the natives (Please pardon me if I am over riding the boat here).
My quant was going excellent considering the fact the level of difficult questions kept going up upto first 20 questions.The way to understand if you are on right track of GMAT to score >700 is the level of difficult questions you come across in first 15-20 questions.These questions will typically range from topics of Probability , Permutation and Combination, Standard Deviation and few word problems.In my set of first 20 problems I got 4 questions on probability and 2 questions of Perm & Comb , and 3 Questions on Std Dev. in a mix of DS and PS.Somewhere after 15th question I also remember getting 2 questions on Ellipse and hyperbola.
Being too overly careful in answering these first 20 questions was the biggest mistake I did cuz in doing so I lost out a lot of time and in the end had just 7 minutes left to answer 10 questions which was less than a minute per question.So overall even though I did extremely well in my initial part of Quant but due to wrong pacing had to guess on almost 10 questions at the last which led me to cancel my score at the end of the test.
Once I was through with the terrible and shaky experience of Quant I took 5 mniutes break, gathered my thoughts and wits and was back with venegence to attempt the verbal section. For me the first 2 questions were from SC (pretty easy ones) and then a question on CR (thoughtful) and back to back RC (2 in total with 9 questions).The quality of the second RC was extremely tough on some **** about geneome, but since I have a good reading speed (800 words/Mins - Thanks to a workshop I attended when I was a kid) I could afford to read and re-read the RC in stipulated time and complete the questions.
The hint that verbal getting tough is when you get really tough CR's and bold faced SC (Thanks to this forum , it din't came as a surprise to me) in first 15 questions.I got 3 of them.Then as expected and the GMAT truly living upto its ******* nature , when I had just 10 minutes left and 4 questions to answer got another RC at the end.Trust me this RC was picked up may be from some files lying in the dungeons of NASA.I had to give a blind guess to the last question but the other three I could answer correctly (hope so).
So overall my GMAT went pretty well except for the last 10 questions of the Quant section where I had to guess all of them.
Eventually I decided to cancel the score because the idea behind me taking the GMAT was to score >750 and 10 questions is far too high a number to guess if you are aiming for that kind of a score. To the best of my guess my score in this GMAT would have been between 680-710 considering the fact that my guesses were limited to the last 10 questions on quant wherein by that time your score based on your ability in the initial part of the tests had already been more or less guaged, though not very sure.
I am not very sure here about the level of toughness of Verbal depending upon how you performed in Quant??? Any idea's??
The last time when I took GMAT was around 4 years back and had scored 690 in 1 week preparation.
My study strategies and guides I am referring to currently are:-
Ist week : 2-3 hrs on weekdays and 7-9 hours on weekends
- Maths Brush up
- Verbal brush up with Kaplan Verbal workbook and Spidey's Notes (Pretty
good way to start Verbal actually)
IInd week : 2-3 hrs on weekdays and 7-9 hours on weekends
- Princeton - Complete (Both Paper Based and CD Tests)
- Kaplan Verbal WB - Complete (This is paper based Test)
- Spidey's Mini Tests
- Kaplan Math Workbook (If time permits)
IVth week : 4 hrs on weekdays and 10 hours on weekends
ETS Official Guide 10th edition : Do the book in parts.
In a typical sitting of 1 hour for verbal
SC 15 questions in 20 minutes (target 1.2 mins/questions to build pace)
RC 4 RC's irrespective of number of questions in 25 mins.(approx 16 ques)
CR 18 questions in 25 minutes (target 1.2 mins/ques to build pace)
I had gone into doing 3 verbal tests in chunks spacing between the day and ending my day with one full section test on verbal picked from Kaplan/Princeton/IMS.
I completed the entire problem solving section for OG starting Friday evening till Saturday Noon. I just did the problems at my pace and did not time it. I did the same for Data Sufficiency as well so in one weekend I completed the Maths section of OG (Ofcourse untimed).
The key here is to complete the OG atleast once entirely and then start getting into the test mould.If one wants then OG can be finished off in a week.
Vth week & VIth week : These two weeks are the crucial make or break weeks for your final GMAT scores. Pace, Focus, Concentration and Practise are the key for this week.
Revise OG and any other notes you may be prepared and one full Computer based Test or the GMAT paper based Tests (can be bought from gmac.org) atleast one daily and/or max 2 daily should be attempted.After you have attempted the test take a 5- 10 mins break and then get into the analysis and post mortem of it.It should be done with utmost sincerity as it would really help in analysing your weakness and building on your strengths.
Keep the last 3rd and 4th Day for Kaplan GMAT 800 and do not study on last 2 days.
Trust me all it takes to nail GMAT is 45 days of solid preparation. Do not tend to do lot of things as in referring to loads and loads of materials as I din't find the need of doing so.
Attempt the Powerprep Test and the Kaplan test 2 days before the actual exam and trust your instincts.I got a 790 on powerprep (it was all OG so no credit taken) and 720 on Kaplan.
I am writing my GMAT again in next 2-3 weeks so would let you know where I stood.
Before leaving a piece of advice to everybody, take 20 mins off to read spidey's notes and the pages 290 onwards (I hope I am right) of Kaplan GMAT verbal WB daily. Trust me it is of great help.
I wish all the best for the future GMAT aspirants and my personal suggestions about the reference material is strictly my own opinion which is not enforceable on anybody.It is subjected to individual study plans and methodology but one should know about KAPLAN is that even though it may build your pace and force you to think hard but its level of difficulty is not reflected in actual GMAT. In actual GMAT atleast the Verbal and to a great extent Problem solving section is a reflection of OG i.e ETS Official Guide 10th edition.
Wish you people all the best.
Thanks & Regards
As a relatively newcomer in the forum, I can't thank you enough for sharing all the important tips and material you so carefully compiled. I found the combination and Permutation part especially helpful as thats the area I've struggled in for most part of my academic years. You sure are a great motivation to many of us here I'm sure. Keep the good work up.
PS: Thanks to the rest of you as well. Do keep the useful tips coming.
twin. this is an amazing note. i am already a 2 time gmat test taker and have had a horrible score in both. after reading tihs note i am convinced that its my strategy that was horrible. i had not come across this forum earlier. your detailed strategy has reinforced confidence that i can do it again
thanks a lot for building my confidence again
WAY TO GO!!!!!!! TAKE A BOW
Now that is what you call a GMAT Score, Don't know about others but you for sure have got me going to at least give GMAT a shot, , Here I was thinking that I am too young for this, now suddenly I feel like I am not that young now
Any ways Loads of Luck for your apps, Do keep writing and motivating
"Luck is the residue of diligence"
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