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680 - took it this morning Jun 22nd 2006

This topic has 8 member replies
Fei Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
13 Jun 2006
Posted:
10 messages

680 - took it this morning Jun 22nd 2006

Post Thu Jun 22, 2006 12:58 am
Confused I wanted to share my experience on this website as I felt it was the least I do after gaining so much help from this website through downloading the practice materials, notes and reading about other people's experiences. Thank you so much.

Firstly, I can't say I beat the GMAT, I was aiming for over 700, and was intially crushed when I saw the score. I had been scoring 720-710 on my GMAT prep. but I have now overcome the trauma of a 680 after learning there is not much of a difference between 680 and 720 in the bigger picture of the MBA application, and therefore the fact that I do not need to sit it again. My time will be better utilized in focusing on the essays.

My back ground
6 years work experience, I am Aussie, native english speaker, female, have a degree in International business, majoring in Economics have a strong background in sales in the financial services, and also worked as a fashion buyer in the last year. The last time I did math was in high school. Also, luckily I have only ever worked for American companies and lived in the US for two years so I could convert easily the the "American" way of spelling for the essays. I can imagine that it would be difficult for other Australians to convert, and even more difficult for non-native english speakers to score well on the verbal, which I had to work really hard on as a native english speaker. I absolutely detested RC and CRat the start, the words just were one big blur initially, but it got dramaticaly better with practice Wink thank fully i was not sitting the LSAT!

Experience
I had THE worse case of nerves this morning. I never want to experience that again. Then to make things worse I had a really bad panic attack during the math starting from the 2nd question!! which is what ultimately brought my score down to Q44, I had been scoring Q48-50. My Verbal was V39, which was the same. Because of the panic attack, I stuffed up on the third question, and froze - I was so out of it I can't even remember the question, and obviously got it wrong because then the questions were easier for the rest of the test and knew I stuffed up when I finished the math with 3 minutes to spare - that had never happened before. I sat the test in Hong Kong and was very impressed with the centre, they provided erasable notepads, earplugs, took digital fingerprints which enabled me to get in and out of the test room with just a touch of the index finger, very 'james bond-ish". I was impressed with the high tech. Also, I was happily surprised to find out that you get 10 minutes break now! it makes such a difference. Apparently it is a new thing, and mba.com has not updated this yet - so 10 minutes between essay and math, then another 10 between math and verbal. This makes a huge difference and gave me time to recollect myself so that I did not mess up the verbal as well.

Questions
I got a lot of DS inequalities, one probability, three geometry and a couple of ratios. Honestly, the questions are pretty much identical to GMAT prep. The whole format, font, structure of the real deal is the same as GMAT prep. Had I not let the panic get the better of me, I know I would have done so much better. Then in Verbal, I was happy to see 3 of the EXACT same questions recycled in my GMAT test!

Practice
I studied for exactly 2 months, with a countdown. I started on the Princeton Review as a warm up ( that is all I recommend it for), then Kaplan, then I did every single question on OG 11, OG quant ( the green one) and OG verbal ( the purple) as well as the simulated GMAT prep. My advice is, do the Kaplan and PR as back up, but towards the end just focus on OG< OG OG, including the purple and green book!!! Do every single question, know the solutions and you will be fine. The questions are of the same difficulty, style and maybe even identical to the ones on the test. Jusy dont get stupid panic attacks like I did....Also, it is so helpful to have two performance charts, one for the CATs including Verbal and Quant, but then another one just for practice questions, so you can keep track of your performances, see where you are weak and where you need work on. I cannot stress how important that data is to your study.

Two days before the test I just reviewed all the solutions to the questions I got wrong on the OG. Then I took the night off before and watched a movie.

My practice test scores.
KaplanCAT - 570, 550, 600, 600 (I found the Kaplan CATs so hard.)
Princeton review CAT - 730, 720, 720
GMATPrep - 690, 720, 710, 720( I redid each one and got entirely different questions which is how I got 4 results. I recommend this) My only complaint is that no solutions are provided, so alot of time is spent trying to work it out yourself. I was expecting a 710 or around there. Actual GMAT 680, but I had an off day and I will try not to lose any sleep over this.

This website was terrific in helping me out. Although I did not get over 700, I would not change the way I studied for the test. As I realised a big part of the success is mental control on the test day.

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GMAT/MBA Expert

Post Thu Jun 22, 2006 10:07 am
Hi Fei:

You should be very proud of your score! Thanks for this awesome post and best of luck to you in your upcoming MBA admissions!

_________________
Sorin Istrate - Community Manager

MBA Watch - Your one-stop shop for all MBA program research

tdesai51 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
23 Apr 2006
Posted:
3 messages
Post Thu Jun 22, 2006 2:45 pm
beatthegmat wrote:
Hi Fei:

You should be very proud of your score! Thanks for this awesome post and best of luck to you in your upcoming MBA admissions!
Hi Fei,

Congratulations on your great success!. I am appearing for the test this month and really dam nervous about verbal section.. Sad but your story inspired me in many ways..
I am currently facing problem in scoring verbal section...specifically in RC.

Do you have any suggestions on how should I approach on this in the last week? I am working hard on RC..but getting problems in completing the section within time.
How much time you had allocated to work on RC, CR and SC section?
Any tips will be appreciated.

Thanks and congrats once again!

Fei Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
13 Jun 2006
Posted:
10 messages
Post Fri Jun 23, 2006 12:04 am
Hi
I know exactly how you feel about the verbal. I was sooo bad at RC initially. CR wasn't much better and so I knew very well that I would need to put a lot of work into Verbal compared with Math, which was hard because I actually enjoyed the PS and DS sections! So I practiced using every book that I could find. I warmed up with the Princeton Review Verbal work out, this book was a good way to develop the approach to the question and just learn how to be an efficient reader, and then prephrase everything. For me that was key - prephrasing the paragraphs. I did all the Kaplan CD Rom tests and would redo them to see that I had improved, which were hard, don't let those scores get you down ( he font is so tiny and hard to read, I thought surely this must make the passages harder to read). Then I practice, practice, and practiced everyday and did every single RC and CR question in the OG, including every single question in the OG verbal. I circled my wrong questions and and would go back and do them again but only after really understanding the logic behind the right question. I found that really focusing on the solutions provided helped a lot. I really recommend practice on only OG questions towards the end because they are so similar to the actual GMAT. I probably spent at least an hour a day on verbal over the 8 week countdown, and made sure that I would at least do two RC passages a day, so I could practice the reading and drawing information from it - quality not quantity. Soon it got noticeably easier to get through the passages. Keeping the score of what I got wrong and right was key too, it was so satisfying to see the gradual improvement. With LOTs of practice and the right approach to how to improve, it just got easier. hope this helps you, I wish you the best of luck!!
Laughing Fei

salama Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
23 Jun 2006
Posted:
3 messages
Post Fri Jun 23, 2006 12:39 pm
Hi Fei... thanks for your debrief. It really is a grt score and good luck on your apps. I will be taking the exam in 2 weeks and have been getting really nervous as the G-Day nears. At any rate did you feel that the Quant was tougher than GMatPrep? were the first few kind of tough cause u mentioned getting stuck on #3 was it just tough or u got nervous. When you say the exam was very similar to GMATPrep, do u mean the questions were alomst the same but with different numbers or u meant similar concepts I know you can't be very specific but any hints will be much appreciated.

I guess I will stick to OG11 and GMATPrep these last two weeks I need a 550
to get into the evening program... anything less than that and i'll have to retake...

Fei Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
13 Jun 2006
Posted:
10 messages
Post Fri Jun 23, 2006 7:49 pm
Hi. No, the Qaunt GMATprep was definitely of the same level of difficulty as the real thing. When I mean similar, I mean similar in terms of the types of questions, for instance, I got a lot of DS inequalities, and DS number properties questions in the real thing that were similar to the GMAT Prep and the types of questions in the OG, some had the exact same wording but just changed the numbers...
I also definitely got the third question wrong not because the question was tough but BECAUSE I got a panic attack, meaning my mind froze, and I would read the question over and over while freaking out that the clock was ticking away and I couldn't think - nothing registered, and I couldn't breathe and felt like I was physically going to faint - it was weird. I would know how to handle it if it happened again. I am sure that won't happen to you. All the initial questions are ALWAYS of an easy level. Actually, I think now remember the 3rd question that I got was something like how many zeros ( none, one, two, three.....)are to the left of the decimal point when you take ...( and it gave a convoluted formula of 1/100 x .0006% divided by 1000%, don't take this as the exact formula) which is actually very basic, I just couldn't think it through. At the end of the day, I believe that if you have gone through all the GMATPrep and OG, then you will have ALL the theory needed to succeed in the GMAT quant. It is about having the theory and knowing how to APPLY it because the GMAT will not ask you anything out of that scope of that theory. For instance that 3rd question that I got is a very basic percentage/ fraction/ decimal actually. From blurred memory I think I just ended up guessing it, because I freaked out. DON'T let this happen to you, just stay calm, take deep breaths and be confident that you have studied to the best of your ability so you KNOW that you can conquer it!
Best of luck in applying to the evening program, Fei

salama Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
23 Jun 2006
Posted:
3 messages
Post Sat Jun 24, 2006 5:27 am
Appreciate you taking the time. This really helps. I guess I will stick to OG11 and GMAtPrep and do as many problems as I can get done in the next two weeks and go over my error log. Again thanks for all the grt tips.

Ali

tdesai51 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
23 Apr 2006
Posted:
3 messages
Post Sat Jun 24, 2006 5:22 pm
Fei wrote:
Hi
I know exactly how you feel about the verbal. I was sooo bad at RC initially. CR wasn't much better and so I knew very well that I would need to put a lot of work into Verbal compared with Math, which was hard because I actually enjoyed the PS and DS sections! So I practiced using every book that I could find. I warmed up with the Princeton Review Verbal work out, this book was a good way to develop the approach to the question and just learn how to be an efficient reader, and then prephrase everything. For me that was key - prephrasing the paragraphs. I did all the Kaplan CD Rom tests and would redo them to see that I had improved, which were hard, don't let those scores get you down ( he font is so tiny and hard to read, I thought surely this must make the passages harder to read). Then I practice, practice, and practiced everyday and did every single RC and CR question in the OG, including every single question in the OG verbal. I circled my wrong questions and and would go back and do them again but only after really understanding the logic behind the right question. I found that really focusing on the solutions provided helped a lot. I really recommend practice on only OG questions towards the end because they are so similar to the actual GMAT. I probably spent at least an hour a day on verbal over the 8 week countdown, and made sure that I would at least do two RC passages a day, so I could practice the reading and drawing information from it - quality not quantity. Soon it got noticeably easier to get through the passages. Keeping the score of what I got wrong and right was key too, it was so satisfying to see the gradual improvement. With LOTs of practice and the right approach to how to improve, it just got easier. hope this helps you, I wish you the best of luck!!
Laughing Fei
Hi Fei,

Thank you very much. I am concentrating on OG and retaking some of the tests now.
Good luck to you in the application process.
Thanks again!

ssorcire Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
31 May 2006
Posted:
1 messages
Post Wed Jun 28, 2006 9:21 am
I'm extremely proud of you Fei! You did an awesome job! I hope you get into the grad school of your dreams! You deserve it!! Keep up the good work!! Very Happy

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