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480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trid

This topic has 5 expert replies and 7 member replies
chowmaing2011 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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480 -> 710, thanks to Khan Academy, EmpowerGMAT, and Trid

Post Fri Sep 30, 2016 4:32 am
A little about me:
Liberal arts major, barely passed math in high school, didn’t know how to solve an equation until this year. Right before the Great Recession, I graduated from college and bought my first GMAT Official Guide and Manhattan GMAT books. After perusing them, I wept a little and realized I am completely and utterly screwed. After 8 years of more tearful and insanely futile perusing, I finally accepted the fact that I need to actually study for the GMAT. I took a practice exam and got a 480. Yes, of course I wept again. I’m very weepy that way.

What I did: Before I could understand wtf those red books were about, I needed to cover 12 years of math so I went to Khan Academy for help. I could solve systems of equations within the week and I finally felt well-prepared to tackle GMAT math. However, because I’m dumb, I decided to register for the GMAT again thinking I’d be able to absorb everything Manhattan GMAT has to offer within the week. I still couldn’t get through the first chapter of the Number Properties book because it's dull af so I just started praying for an okay score. I got a 600 (36Q, 32V). Wait what, I need to study verbal?!! But I'm liberal arts Sad After eating my feelings for a few weeks, I found EmpowerGMAT. OH MY GOD, YOU GUYS. Totally fangirling rn.

Why EmpowerGMAT is the most amazing, most effective prep program out there:
Rich’s enthusiasm is infectious. At first, he made me go “um, are you for real” because he reminded me of that "tiny tiny ads" infomercial guy but Don Lapre died in 2011 and all of the seemingly crazy stuff Rich says simply works. I live in the middle of nowhere, far, far from the US, and I found a way to get myself a Costco pack of Trident Cinnamon gum. I even winked at some creepy rando at the testing center (who then followed me halfway home but that’s not for here). Purposely guessed on 3 questions because they were too hard. Also, the fact that Rich and Max’s voices didn’t put me to sleep is huge. They really make you want to annihilate the GMAT. For some reason, MGMAT and Magoosh made the GMAT look like the Lannister clan on Captagon. Ain’t nobody got time for that (says the bright girl who put off -studying- for the GMAT for 7 years).

Both sections are a work of art - watch the videos, do the drills, take the quizzes. It just works. Rinse and repeat (you always pick up something new from the videos). EmpowerGMAT uses real GMAT questions from the OGs - this is rare - and absolutely destroys them. Confidence is such a huge part of the GMAT experience and these guys will instill “rational confidence” in you. You will feel confident because you know how GMAT questions are written, why they’re written a certain way, and what you can do to eviscerate each question. They even teach you how to make educated guesses. I love these two.

Note on Verbal: People often have a hard time improving Reading Comprehension. I used to skim the passages because I just don’t care enough about algae (or my $250 fee, time, “effort”). DON’T SKIM. “Empower reading” is totally a thing.

About practice exams: After my 480, I stopped taking mocks under exam conditions because it just bums me out. I used the GMATPREP software for extra practice though (untimed quizzes, etc).

EXAM DAY: I take Lexapro which means I'm very big on stress barfs. I scheduled my exam for 6pm, left for the testing center 2 hours ahead, STILL GOT CAUGHT IN TRAFFIC (I live 5 km away), arrived 15 minutes late (yes I still found the time to wink at the creepy rando - hello priorities). My late arrival actually gave me an extra boost of adrenaline which was super helpful. After breezing through the AWA and IR sections because no one cares, I almost started weeping again because Quant seemed....easy. I kept hearing Rich's voice ("a meaty question") and it really helped. During Verbal, I kept hearing Max's mantra: DON'T SKIM. Seriously, don't skim. I got a 46Q, 41V for a 710 total. I was the only one in the testing center apart from the Pearson Vue person and the creepy rando so I screamed a little (with joy, not WTF).

TL;DR - Subliterate person spent 7 years “studying” for the GMAT, got 710 after two weeks of intense-ish studying with EmpowerGMAT. Worth so, so, so much more than $99. You won’t regret it.

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Post Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:44 am
Hi chowmaing2011,

That's OUTSTANDING news! A 710/Q46 is right around the 90th percentile overall, so you can apply to any Business Schools that interest you. The same ability that you used to learn and adapt your thinking to the GMAT should serve you well in Business School and beyond.

1) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
2) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

Another GMAT Assassin has been made!
Rich

_________________
Contact Rich at Rich.C@empowergmat.com

anmaria Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
03 May 2016
Posted:
3 messages
Post Wed Oct 05, 2016 4:04 am
Congrats on the score!! You've done a great job!

I wanted to ask you if you covered all the classes offered in EmpowerGmat? I just scored 590 and really want to push the score over 700, but I work and study full time, so my time is pretty much limited to 2 h /day, of course weekends I get little more time to spare for GMAT.. So would you recommend taking the course, even though I would not be able to follow it EXACTLY as the study plan suggests? My plan would be to take the Gmat again after a month.

Post Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:26 am
Hi anmaria,

I'll be happy to answer any questions that you have and offer the appropriate advice, but it would help if you could provide a bit more information on how you've been studying and your goals:

Studies:
1) How long have you studied?
2) What materials have you used?
3) What were the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores when you scored 590?

Goals:
4) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
5) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich

_________________
Contact Rich at Rich.C@empowergmat.com

anmaria Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
03 May 2016
Posted:
3 messages
Post Wed Oct 05, 2016 11:51 am
Thanks Rich!

My scaled 590 score was Q44, V28. I was surprised by the score, since in my practise tests I've performed better in verbal and only around 40 in quant. I started studying this summer, but I never studied enough. I felt already beaten by the test before even ever taking it and I did not take studying seriously. Now in the fall I studied quant, since that was my weak part. My verbal practise was limited to 6 cats I took before the actual exam and few free SC videos I found. The materials I've used are the Kaplan book, OC 2016 books (have not done all the exercises) and some free video courses that I've watched to learn some math concepts.
I'm planning on applying to few top European graduate schools by the mid January. I'd like to take my test preferably in November, latest before Christmas.

Thank you for your help!!

Post Wed Oct 05, 2016 4:10 pm
Hi anmaria,

Raising a 590 to a 700+ will take some serious time and effort on your part - you'll have to make some big improvements to how you handle BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. That will likely require another 2-3 months of consistent, guided study. If you could push your Test Date to mid-December, then you'd have a solid 2 months of time with which you could get through a full study regimen (and likely improve in all areas) and still have time to retake the GMAT if needed.

1) When you took the GMAT, did you have to rush to finish any of the sections?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich

_________________
Contact Rich at Rich.C@empowergmat.com

vibhutifromIndia Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
06 Oct 2016
Posted:
1 messages
Post Thu Oct 06, 2016 4:19 am
Hi Rich,

Sorry I am using this thread to post my query because I don't know how else to tag you. I seriously need your guidance. I have my gmat in next 10 days. I gave Gmat prep exam pack2 two days ago and scored a 730 (Q-50, V-38, with 1 RC and couple of other questions repeated, so I am assuming that it is little inflated because of that). I had 8 questions wrong in Q and 13 incorrect in V. Prior to this, I had 14 incorrect in Q and had scored a Q-49.
Today I gave Gmat prep mock 6, and to my greatest disappointment, I scored a dismal 620!! (Q-46 and V 30).

Detailed break-up :-

13 incorrect in Q (Q-1, 5, 9, 12, 13, 19, 22, 24, 26, 27, 31, 34, 37)

and exactly 13 incorrect in V (

Q 2- SC

7, 11, 12 - RC

15- SC

19- SC

22, 23 - RC

28, 32, 35 - SC

37, 39- RC

I generally struggle in RC and CR and very comfortable with SC but to my greatest surprise, today I got 100 % accuracy in CR (tried pre-thinking properly), but 6 SC wrong and 7 RC wrong Sad . I know that I can't do much to improve RC in such a short span but SC mistakes are a big red flag.
My biggest concern is that number of incorrect questions are same when I got a V-38 in last mock, so how exactly algorithm has failed me!
Also, this is my lowest score in Q of all the mocks, I found questions in first 10 to be quite challenging today. Almost same number of incorrect questions but score took a dip by 100 points!! this is very scary, please guide me on what could be done? My confidence has taken a great hit with this score.

Post Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:36 pm
Hi vibhutifromindia,

I've sent you a PM with some notes.

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich

_________________
Contact Rich at Rich.C@empowergmat.com

anmaria Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
03 May 2016
Posted:
3 messages
Post Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:53 pm
Thank you so much for your help Rich!

I had a lot of extra time in Verbal (I skimmed RC too fast), finished the exam 15 minutes early. Quant however I used all my time and I had to rush in some parts (but I did answer all the questions)..

I've been thinking and I think I'll do the 2 month study plan in Empower Gmat. If I've understood correct, the schedule includes EVERYTHING (also my self studies, not just videos and lessons), so 2 hours a day and 4 hours in weekends seems manageable.

Post Fri Oct 07, 2016 9:19 am
Hi anmaria,

Since you've already put in some serious study time already, you might find the Total Score Booster Study Plan to be a better fit for your needs. We have a variety of free resources at our website (www.empowergmat.com) so that you can 'test out' the Course before setting up a Full Account.

If you have any additional question, then just let me know.

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich

_________________
Contact Rich at Rich.C@empowergmat.com

chowmaing2011 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
10 Jun 2008
Posted:
4 messages
Followed by:
1 members
Post Thu Oct 13, 2016 7:32 am
anmaria wrote:
Congrats on the score!! You've done a great job!

I wanted to ask you if you covered all the classes offered in EmpowerGmat? I just scored 590 and really want to push the score over 700, but I work and study full time, so my time is pretty much limited to 2 h /day, of course weekends I get little more time to spare for GMAT.. So would you recommend taking the course, even though I would not be able to follow it EXACTLY as the study plan suggests? My plan would be to take the Gmat again after a month.
So sorry for the super delayed response!

I used EmpowerGMAT for 15 days straight (took 2 weeks off work and lots of stimulants for 8-10 hours a day of studying). I found the OG answer videos incredibly helpful because they show you the easiest way to solve each problem type. The OG videos apply the Empower strategies so if you were super pressed for time, you could just work through those and see a marked improvement.

chowmaing2011 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
10 Jun 2008
Posted:
4 messages
Followed by:
1 members
Post Thu Oct 13, 2016 7:33 am
anmaria wrote:
Congrats on the score!! You've done a great job!

I wanted to ask you if you covered all the classes offered in EmpowerGmat? I just scored 590 and really want to push the score over 700, but I work and study full time, so my time is pretty much limited to 2 h /day, of course weekends I get little more time to spare for GMAT.. So would you recommend taking the course, even though I would not be able to follow it EXACTLY as the study plan suggests? My plan would be to take the Gmat again after a month.
So sorry for the super delayed response!

I used EmpowerGMAT for 15 days straight (took 2 weeks off work and lots of stimulants for 8-10 hours a day of studying). I found the OG answer videos incredibly helpful because they show you the easiest way to solve each problem type. The OG videos apply the Empower strategies so if you were super pressed for time, you could just work through those and see a marked improvement.

chowmaing2011 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
10 Jun 2008
Posted:
4 messages
Followed by:
1 members
Post Thu Oct 13, 2016 7:33 am
Rich.C@EMPOWERgmat.com wrote:
Hi anmaria,

I'll be happy to answer any questions that you have and offer the appropriate advice, but it would help if you could provide a bit more information on how you've been studying and your goals:

Studies:
1) How long have you studied?
2) What materials have you used?
3) What were the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores when you scored 590?

Goals:
4) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
5) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
Already admitted to INSEAD with a 25% scholarship Smile Thanks again for creating such a wonderful course - Nothing else worked for me!

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