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720(Q-48,V-40) after 7 long treacherous months!

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powerpuff Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
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720(Q-48,V-40) after 7 long treacherous months!

Post Thu Jan 12, 2012 11:55 pm
Am glad to share with you all that I took my GMAT yesterday and got a 720(Q-48,V-40).This was my second attempt on the GMAT. The last attempt was on 12th December last year. I had high expectations on the first GMAT but did not do well. I did not do well both on verbal and Quant sections that time and as a result got a 630. The biggest problem on the exam was that I was got anxious and could not manage time well. I didn’t do anything exceptional since then for the second attempt. Just relaxed and destressed myself and worked a little more on the different areas.

Profile :
I am working in a KPO in India as a associate consultant and have 4 years of work experience. I’d have loved to apply to business schools abroad but being a girl I have other considerations Smile ,one of which is that if I go abroad, I’ll have to stay back there to pay back the loan which I do not want to do. So I will be applying to business schools in India only.

Preparation time : Started by preparation in June and took almost 6-7 months . That's much more that what is recommended but since I was quite poor both on Verbal and quant when I started so didn't want to take the exam in haste. In fact, when I took the GMATPREP when I started, I had scored a meagre 410. I knew that it'll take me a couple of months to reach to my target score.

Resources I used
Books for all the sections - OG12
Quant - Used Manhattan Maths Strategy Guides. Look no further. These are good. For practice, ps+ ds boosters should be good.
Sentence Correction : Aristotle SC Grail, Manhattan SC. Both the books are really good and should make you well rounded in SC
Critical Reasoning : Aristotle CR Grail+Powerscore CR. Really good books to understand the different question types.OG12,11,10 CR
Reading Comprehension : OG12 RC,RC Grail passages


D-day experience
Because of anxiety about the test, I could not sleep the night before on the first attempt. Usually I sleep at 12 but that night I could not sleep at 2 and that was the reason for my poor performance on the first attempt. On the second attempt, I slept well and was feeling fresh when I took the exam

Here are my thoughts on the exam and on preparation
On AWA:
Write five three-sentence paragraphs, use logical connectors/transitions (e.g. first, second, third, finally, because, if, then, so, etc.), know how to spell a few key words (e.g. fallacy, correlation, causation, differentiate, distinguish, problematic, etc.). Do not write very long sentences and getting a 4.5+ would be a cakewalk. Haven't got the AWA score for the second attempt yet.

On Quant
The first several questions seemed pretty straight forward. I think I was getting them right because they did seem to be getting more difficult. After a while, I was getting things I had never seen before. That was the one problem I had with the OG, I wish there were more examples of the more difficult level of problems. When I got a strange probability problem I figured I was doing okay. I didn't feel like I was 100% on most of them after awhile, especially the DS ones. I was running out of time with about three left so I took quick guesses after looking at each one only a few seconds.


On Verbal
During the verbal section I felt terrible for some reason. It took too long to answer the first few questions and I felt rushed the rest of the time. I tried my hardest to focus on each question as it came and to ignore the clock dilemma I was in. I was actually surprised with the 40 I received because I felt like I did terrible. When it was all over and my 720 came up and I was relieved at the same time.


My advice to test takers:
- Identify your weaknesses ASAP. It was not enough for me to realize that I had trouble with SC. I analyzed my mistakes and found the exact format of questions that were confounding me.
- Have fun while preparing.
- Stay relaxed during the test.
- Figure out what works for you and dont change a thing during the test.
- I would advise against trying to gauge your test performance by how hard you think the questions are as you go along. This was my undoing on the first attempt as during the exam I was trying to figure out how I was doing on the exam and what my possible score would be
-DS and PS : Read the question really carefully even if the question seems easy . For example, do not assume an integer, if not given in the question. Do not forget to consider values between -1 and

I'd be applying to business schools for Fall 13 intake so now focus would be on building my profile.
I'm indebted to both gmatclub and beatthegmat for the motivation, direction and inspiration provided here. My special thanks to my mentor here rishi raj who was patient enough to reply to my posts and PMs. I'd also like to thank eternal_optimist, bblast,rohu and AIMGMAT for keeping the forum alive. Let me know if you have any questions/feedback and I'd be happy to answer them. Smile



Last edited by powerpuff on Sun Aug 02, 2015 11:25 pm; edited 3 times in total

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AbhiJ Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Fri Jan 13, 2012 2:12 am
Try to apply to some schools in abroad - you may get the scholarship. Or you can prepare a bit more and get a 760, which would ensure scholarship.

powerpuff Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
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Post Sun Jan 15, 2012 3:51 am
AbhiJ wrote:
Try to apply to some schools in abroad - you may get the scholarship. Or you can prepare a bit more and get a 760, which would ensure scholarship.
Yes, that's there but the top tier schools abroad don't usually give loans. It's the second tier schools which dole out lavish scholarships. I need to research and decide whether I want to go to these schools or not.

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Post Sun Jan 15, 2012 2:00 pm
Congrats, powerpuff! Hope your MBA dreams come true in India! Smile

powerpuff Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
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Post Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:21 pm
DanaJ wrote:
Congrats, powerpuff! Hope your MBA dreams come true in India! Smile
Thank you very much Dana. You guys here at BTG are really inspirational Smile

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Post Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:51 am
hey congos on the score.
best wishes for apping...Smile

rishi raj Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts
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Post Sat Jan 21, 2012 9:11 pm
Congrats Shalini for the fantastic improvement and for the great score. I'm glad that you found my guidance helpful. Smile

archimittal Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Mon Jan 23, 2012 10:27 am
Congratulations shalini. Wonderful improvement especially given the fact that you started with quite a low score on the diagnostic before you started the exam. Congrats once again. Smile

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Post Wed Feb 01, 2012 10:23 am
Congratulations powerpuff. Your perseverance paid off in the end. Did you see questions on idioms on the GMAT ? I'm planning to take the GMAT on 21st Feb and am still not very clear whether I should focus on the idioms or not ?

powerpuff Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
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Post Sat Feb 04, 2012 9:49 pm
punewarrior wrote:
Congratulations powerpuff. Your perseverance paid off in the end. Did you see questions on idioms on the GMAT ? I'm planning to take the GMAT on 21st Feb and am still not very clear whether I should focus on the idioms or not ?
I did see 2-3 idioms but those were fairly easy. What I would recommend you is that don't go crazy learning all the idioms by rote but you certainly don't wanna leave doing the important idioms too.

@rishi ,archie
Thank you very much for the wishes!

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Post Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:24 am
Awesome hard-work, improvement and score! Congrats! Smile Smile Smile

powerpuff Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
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Post Sat Feb 11, 2012 11:01 pm
rajpat wrote:
Awesome hard-work, improvement and score! Congrats! Smile Smile Smile
Thank you very much for the wishes. And yes, hardwork is all that changes the game!

NRToma Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
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Post Wed Feb 15, 2012 1:00 pm
hi .. congrats for your great achievement. I also studied from India and about to pursue GMAT. The books you mentioned, Aristotle S grail and Aristotle RC, did you purchase it or downloaded from net?.. as i couldnot find any downloadable version can you please help me by mailing me the softcopy(if you have them). I already PM'd you my mail id. Thanx!

Empirestateofmind Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Wed Feb 22, 2012 10:12 pm
COngratulations! I've my GMAT scheduled on 26th Feb and I'm inspired by your debrief. Hopefully, I should do well

BhushanJogi Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Wed Feb 22, 2012 11:20 pm
Hi Shalini Smile Congrats! I was really inspired by reading your debrief..
I have just started with the prep.. Even I am weak in both the area..
So trying to build up the competency..
Can u give me any advises, How to build the foundation..?

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