640 to 700!!!! Elated beyond words...

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640 to 700!!!! Elated beyond words...

by NAE21032 » Tue Sep 22, 2009 9:20 pm
Ok so I have been following the beatthegmat.com website for about 7 months now envying any and every score above 700. I just wanted to say that despite the fact that some may view my score as "just okay", it is absolutely possible to improve your score and I am living proof. In my opinion it is all about confidence. Here is the difference between my two times taking the GMAT:

First time study habits:
**Took MGMAT tests ONLY and though I kept seeing the same questions over and over again, I assumed that the 700+ scores would be representative of the scores I would receive on the real thing.
**Focused soooo much on the minutiae of Quant that I didnt even spend a lot of time on Verbal.

First time test taking:
**Psyched myself out so much by abandoning what is normal to me. Test prep companies like MGMAT and Princeton Review always advise not to eat a heavy breakfast or study before, so I didnt.
**Upon taking the test, was so nervous I was giggly.
**Did the essays....ran out of time trying to make them perfect.
**MOST IMPORTANT: I thought I was doing soooo badly on the math and everytime I would get a question that I thought was hard, I would just give up on myself and say "clearly I dont know this".
**Spent too much time on concepts I didnt know.
**Took too long of a break and ended up wasting 2 minutes in Verbal.
**By the time it got to verbal, I was so distraught over math that I was certain the whole test was a waste...had no focus.
Cried through the test scoring system and ended up getting 640. 78th percentile math and 58th percentile verbal.

Moral of the story: had I maintained a modicum of sensibility during the Verbal section, I might have done ok. In other words, DONT TRY TO GAUGE YOUR SCORE!!! <-- I cant emphasize this enough.

2nd time:
**Practiced by taking other types of exams than MGMAT. Barrons, Princeton Review, GMAT Prep, etc.
**My scores were the following:
-MGMAT: (saw a few familiar questions) 710
-MGMAT 2: (saw a few familiar questions) 720
-GMAT Prep 1: 690
-Princeton Review: 690
-Princeton Review: 520 (Got me upset but I REFUSED to let it get me down bc their scoring is EXTREMELY different than GMAT Prep)
-GMAT Prep 2: 620
-GMAT Prep 1 (again, saw only 4 similar questions): 690
-Princeton Review (day before actual test): 660

Actual test day:
**Ate my regular full breakfast
**Got to the testing center an hour before and studied before (I realized, I am the type of person who does better when cramming and studying at the last second)
**Listened to fun music to calm myself down (this helped IMMENSELY)
**Drank a lot of water before

On the test:
**I had never practiced with writing samples before so I only took 10 minutes each for the writing section. Hopefully my score wont be too bad but I really didnt see a point to exert all my energy into those. Just take 10 minutes to write as best you can.
**Didnt take a break between AWA and Quant
**During Quant, just be calm. If you dont know it, move on. I can honestly say that taking too much time on things that I was certain I didnt know cost me at least 20-30 pts.
**Dont worry about getting too many "E's" or too many "B's" in a row. Its Computer adaptive! :-)
**Finish strong!
**Took a 4 minute Verbal break
**On Verbal, (I cant stress this enough) COMPLETELY FORGET ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED IN QUANT!!!! Even if you failed quant with a 35 or something, you can completely make it up in Verbal.
**Stayed calm

The only time I got nervous was at the time my score was generating. I got teary eyed hoping to GOD that I had at least improved from my 640. When it said 700 I cried. Maybe a small feat to most on this forum but for me, I am proud of myself.

If there is anything I can share with anyone it is that the key is to NOT gauge your score. For all you know, a 700 level question can be extremely easy to you, whereas a 500 level question might feel impossible. Its out of your hands so just do the best you can. :-)

My study materials:
**first of all, I will say that if you are opting to take any prep course, I have taken Princeton Review a course in Kaplan and MGMAT, and MGMAT is the best HANDS DOWN. If nothing else, just get the books and access to the online materials.
The best materials in my opinion are:
-OG 12 Verbal
-MGMAT Number properties

These singlehandedly boosted my confidence 10-fold.

In the end, though it is not necessarily the highest score out there, I am EXTREMELY happy with my score and know that it was the result of hard work and perseverance (and of course, the unwavering support from the BeattheGMAT folks).. Bottom line: If I can do it, you can too!! :D :D :shock: :shock: :?

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by gmat740 » Tue Sep 22, 2009 10:04 pm

This is a nice debrief

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by ogbeni » Wed Sep 23, 2009 2:33 pm
YAAAY SO happy for you!! Good luck with your applications!

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by zuleron » Wed Sep 23, 2009 4:02 pm
congratulations! Great score. BTW what was your split between quant and verbal?

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by GMATBootcamp » Wed Sep 23, 2009 11:05 pm
congratulations on your success! hard work always pays off

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by NAE21032 » Thu Sep 24, 2009 6:16 pm
zuleron wrote:congratulations! Great score. BTW what was your split between quant and verbal?
Thanks everyone! My split was 47Q 39V. Definitely not the best I've done in verbal but considering the added intensity of test day, ill take it!

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by cramya » Thu Sep 24, 2009 7:28 pm

A point well made
On Verbal, (I cant stress this enough) COMPLETELY FORGET ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED IN QUANT!!!! Even if you failed quant with a 35 or something, you can completely make it up in Verbal
It may be difficult to come to this mindset but it is crucial to the overall score as any dent to the confidence can prove detrimental when facing the GMAT.

Good luck and we are all happy for you.