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Study Plan too long?

This topic has 2 expert replies and 5 member replies
vgg5015 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Study Plan too long?

Post Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:12 pm
I graduated college in May 2015 and am interested in MBA Programs that have averages of 3 years of work experience, so I want to apply either for 2017 or 2018. I want to pace myself while studying for the GMAT (2-4 hours weekly for now). I just took a practice test and didn't do well on it (510) but because I have so much time I I know I can bring my score up. However, I am worried that starting ~2 years ahead is too long.

Any suggestions/comments?

Thanks!

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dabral Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts
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Post Sun Mar 20, 2016 11:26 pm
@vgg5015

I wouldn't stretch out the preparation over a 2 year period. The problem with that long a time frame is that most of us would lose interest and feel like we are studying but not really making a progress. It would be better to set a deadline, say four months, and work towards that. This will ensure that you have the pressure to get things done. The other thing is if you stretch out your studying for too long, then you can burn out after some time. You will just be sick of studying for the GMAT.

The best is to get done with the GMAT and move on with life. GMAT scores are valid for 5 years and you can easily use them when you apply in the future.

Cheers,
Dabral

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Post Mon Mar 21, 2016 5:00 am
Given that you have recently graduated, probably you are still to a degree in study mode and any math that you learned is still relatively fresh in your mind. Also, in some cases people do take over a year to get to their target scores. So starting now is a good idea.

At the same time, likely you can get to your target score within a period of time shorter than one, or two, years. So maybe your best bet is to shoot for hitting your target within something along the lines of three to six months. If you don't hit it within six months, at that point you could extend your preparation time.

That having been said, familiarity with the test can be a big factor in scoring high. So if you really believe that you would just habitually do some work on the GMAT week after week, month after month, for two years, doing that could be a success formula. Analogous to doing that is doing crossword puzzles every weekend. People who do them every week for years get so good at figuring out the answers.

Still, I think that shooting for three to six months is the way to go. Many people drag out their GMAT plans for years, accomplishing little during much of that time.

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Post Mon Mar 21, 2016 9:12 am
Hi vgg5015,

Thinking about your MBA plans this far ahead is remarkably forward-thinking of you, which is a good thing. In that way, you have plenty of time to plan everything out and tackle each 'piece' of the application process without facing an immediate deadline.

Many Test Takers spend 3 months (or more) of consistent study time before they hit their 'peak' scores. During that time, it's common to study 10-15 hours per week (or more). Your plan to study just 2-4 hours per week might be a bit too slow of a process for your overall good.

1) What is your goal score?
2) Which Schools are you planning to apply to?

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

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vgg5015 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Mon Mar 21, 2016 6:30 pm
Thank you all for answering!

@Dabral, how does sending the GMAT scores to schools work? I remember reading that you had to pick which schools to send it to on the day of the test. If I were to take the test soon, I wouldn't really know who to send my scores to, but if I could wait up to 5 years that would be fantastic!

@Marty, I guess what you described about familiarity is what I'm hoping for. The thing is, I don't want to apply right now but I don't want to lose focus (or worse, end up cramming) if I don't start studying soon.

@Rich, My goal score is around 700, but I honestly don't know how unrealistic that is for me. However, if I do get that score I would like to apply to top schools in Europe. Do you have any tips?

Thanks again!

dabral Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts
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Post Mon Mar 21, 2016 7:53 pm
@vgg5015

You are right that you may not know five years in advance which schools to send your scores. But I think you can select schools, so if you have certain schools in mind I would just add those to the list.

I would recommend you to confirm this with the Official GMAT representative here: http://www.beatthegmat.com/ask-the-test-maker-f71.html

Cheers,
Dabral

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Post Mon Mar 21, 2016 10:18 pm
Hi vgg5015,

Since you're not on an immediate deadline, there's really nothing keeping you from your score goal. You will have to study in a consistent, organized fashion, but you have the benefit of time. In that same way, you can do a bit of research and probably come up with 5 Schools that you would likely want to send your GMAT score report to. If you end up sending your scores to different Schools (or additional Schools), then that's fine - it's just a minor added expense that you'll incur down the line.

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

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Post Tue Mar 22, 2016 4:48 pm
vgg5015 wrote:
My goal score is around 700, but I honestly don't know how unrealistic that is for me.
Attaining any score goal is pretty much just a matter of starting point + (training intensity x time) + maybe some out of the box thinking. People go from the 500's to the 700's all the time.

I am actually in a way amazed by how often people working with me don't understand that basically they can score whatever they want to score.

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http://infinitemindprep.com/
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