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Register now and save up to $200 Available with Beat the GMAT members only code • Free Veritas GMAT Class Experience Lesson 1 Live Free Available with Beat the GMAT members only code ## A place to start.... This topic has 1 expert reply and 0 member replies nuttyitalian4 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Joined 15 Dec 2016 Posted: 1 messages #### A place to start.... Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:29 pm Hi there, I am looking to score a 600-650 on GMAT. I have about 6-8 weeks to prepare for this. After looking around on this website, I found it difficult to find out exactly what materials and where to purchase for my prep- books, a course, free practice exams, etc? I am currently an undergrad who cannot afford a 600 prep course. Any suggestions would be appreciated. ### GMAT/MBA Expert ceilidh.erickson GMAT Instructor Joined 04 Dec 2012 Posted: 1738 messages Followed by: 224 members Upvotes: 1443 Thu Dec 15, 2016 6:12 pm It's certainly possible to study on your own without spending a lot of money on prep programs. Here are the things that you absolutely must budget for: - a copy of the Official Guide (OG). You can buy used ones online, and it doesn't matter which edition you get. - the test itself. Don't just set aside$250 to take the GMAT once. Set aside enough money to take it at least twice. Many students don't do as well as they hoped the first time. Take the pressure off by telling yourself you'll take it twice - then if you get the score you want the first time, bonus \$250!

Things you need, and that most people purchase, but that have optional workarounds:
- Practice tests (CATs). Most prep companies allow you to take *one* practice test for free, so you could just take one from each company. However, purchasing a bundle from a single company will allow you to run metrics and track patterns in your strengths and weaknesses. Otherwise, you'd have to do this by hand.
- Content explanation. There is a lot of content tested on the GMAT, which is why we publish giant bundles of strategy guides! But - you can certainly assemble (almost all of) this information on your own if you're organized. Use Khan Academy or this forum, and compile your own notes on rules and strategies.

Here are the free resources you should use:
- GMATPrep software from mba.com: http://www.mba.com/us/the-gmat-exam/prepare-for-the-gmat-exam/test-prep-materials/free-gmat-prep-software.aspx
- this forum
- blogs from prep companies. Manhhattan Prep's is full of useful advice on general strategies and specific problem types:

1. Take a full CAT (from a prep company, so you'll get explanations. GMATPrep doesn't provide explanations).

2. Review the test in depth - right and wrong answers - and compile a list of topics that need work.

3. Research a topic (in strategy guides or online free resources), and take notes.

4. Then find problems in the OG that correspond specifically to that topic. (Search on this forum for problems by topic, or use a tool like Mprep's Navigator). Track your work. Aim to cover 5-10 topics per weeks, alternating btw quant and verbal.

4. Take a practice test every 2 weeks. Review deeply, and track your work.

5. Take 1 test a week for the last 2 weeks. Save the GMATPrep tests for last.

Look through this forum for a more detailed study plan, but that's the basics. Good luck!

If you're interested, here are the Mprep resources that might be helpful to you:
Blog: https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/blog/
Free CAT: https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/store/online-resources/free-gmat-practice-test/
Bundle of CATs w/ analytics: https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/store/online-resources/gmat-online-practice-tests/
Free OG tracker (Navigator): https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/store/online-resources/free-gmat-tracker-for-official-guides/
OG tracker full access: https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/store/online-resources/gmat-navigator/
How to track your work: https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/blog/2013/01/18/the-worst-mistake-you-can-make-in-gmat-studying/
Other: https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/store/

_________________

Ceilidh Erickson
Manhattan Prep GMAT & GRE instructor
EdM in Mind, Brain, and Education

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