710girl no more: 760 (44V/49Q) 99%

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710girl no more: 760 (44V/49Q) 99%

by 710girl » Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:24 am
Hi Everyone,

After taking the GMAT twice and getting a 710 both times (first time 40V/48Q, second time 41V/47Q), I decided that self studying just wasn't gonna cut it. For background info, I'm a liberal arts grad living in NY. Before my second test I had used the following resources:

1) MGMAT books
2) All three OGs
3) MGMAT CATs
4) 800 Score CATs
5) GMATPrep CATs

After the second time, I hired a private tutor from Veritas for 10 hours (I liked that I could decide the number of hours as opposed to Kaplan which required a package of 14hrs or something. There was a waitlist for Manhattan GMAT tutors in the NYC area). The cost included the Veritas books. Right off the bat, it helped a ton. He told me that my Quant scores were probably never going to improve significantly since I'm not an engineer or anything so that I should focus on my Verbal. In addition, I'm a native English speaker and it would give me more "bang for the buck" for my score. It was completely counterintuitive to me since I had scored in the 92%ile in Verbal the second time but 77% on quant.

But I did what he suggested. I kept up the math practice but completely re-engineered my focus on Verbal. I got the following books:

1) Grammar Smart by Princeton Review (waaayyyy more manageable for English speakers than MGMAT sentence correction)
2) PowerScore LSAT Logical Reasoning Question Type Training (great CR practice)

Then I used the Veritas books as additional question resources for Advanced Math and Sentence Correction.

The day before the test I got a 1 hour massage and tried not to think about the test at all. I did little spurts of work... only 45 minutes at a time for about 3 different times.

The long story short is: if you're a native english speaker and you're scoring in the low 40s in Verbal and high 40s in Math, keep up the timing in Math and do advanced math problems, but focus as much as possible on your verbal (again, this is counter intuitive if you look at the percentiles). I thought about it this way: I want to get 100% in the Verbal section. There shouldn't be a single question that is too tricky or hard for me. For math, it was all about staying consistent and staying good at what I already knew but I didn't care about additional number properties or weird memorization. This really helped boost my overall score!

Good luck everyone!
Last edited by 710girl on Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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by lajohnson2200 » Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:34 am
Awesome advice. Will implement that strategy for my second attempt. Congrats!!!!!

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by aslan » Tue Nov 23, 2010 12:14 pm
wow two attempts from a 710...!..where would you like to go? :)

Btw v.v nice score. Congratz..I thought previously you didn't put the debrief but its here.

I absolutely agree that in verbal there should never be any mistake...it always should remain within 5 mistakes, otherwise the scores can vary by a huge huge margin!. :(

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by roshnipat1610 » Wed Nov 24, 2010 4:52 am
Hi 710girl,

Congratulations!! That is a great score!!

Does the PowerScore LSAT Logical Reasoning Question Type Training book have explanations as well?

Thanks.

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by sashish007 » Wed Nov 24, 2010 11:29 am
Congrats! You aren't a 710girl anymore :)
Ashish
Share not just why the right answer is right, but also why the wrong ones are not.

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by 710girl » Wed Nov 24, 2010 12:02 pm
HI roshnipat1610. The PowerScore LSAT Question Type Training does not have any explanations, but there is a website in the back where you can go to read the explanations (I never actually looked at them tho... I would re-do all of the questions I got wrong and I would select the right answer the second time around). This book is really for really advanced practice... after you've read everything you possibly can read and you know all of the strategy. It's just a question bank.

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by aslan » Wed Nov 24, 2010 12:17 pm
@760girl: Are you certain about the usefulness of LSAT on CR problems?

I have this 1000 LSAT problems, and some of them look wrong with erroneous answers, while others are way off the category of CR.Many are just plain logic based and It really puts the timing off with these 'rocks' in between.

I would really love to have some 1000 CR ones anywhere! :\

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by [email protected] » Wed Nov 24, 2010 4:57 pm
Congratulations, 760girl - great story!
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Looking for GMAT practice questions? Try out the Veritas Prep Question Bank. Learn More.

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by Ttronn » Wed Nov 24, 2010 5:52 pm
aslan wrote:@760girl: Are you certain about the usefulness of LSAT on CR problems?

I have this 1000 LSAT problems, and some of them look wrong with erroneous answers, while others are way off the category of CR.Many are just plain logic based and It really puts the timing off with these 'rocks' in between.

I would really love to have some 1000 CR ones anywhere! :\
I'm not the Original Poster but I can confirm that the LSAT Critical Reasoning problems/discussion etc. found in the POWERSCORE LSAT CR books are useful for GMAT prep. As a former law student I found that my Powerscore CR book for the LSAT was very helpful by giving more practice problems and more insight into the more difficult GMAT CR questions like Parallel Reasoning etc.

Also I'd like to second the OP's advice about focusing on Verbal for those that are already scoring at the 80th percentile or above in Quant problems. I was able to score a 760 on my GMAT because of my focus on verbal [47V (99th%)] even though my Quant percentile was comparably inferior at [49Q(86%)]. Its significantly easier to raise your Verbal score from an ~86th percentile than it is for Quant and can contribute to a significantly higher overall score in the process.

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by roshnipat1610 » Wed Nov 24, 2010 7:57 pm
Thank you, 710girl for the clarifications!! Good luck with your applications

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by 710girl » Wed Nov 24, 2010 8:43 pm
I second Ttronn's post about the usefulness of LSAT logical reasoning practice books. The passages are consistently longer and more complicated which is great for practice. On my actual GMAT, I found the CR and reading passages to be really mind-numbing especially since my concentration was starting to fade. The PowerScore book provides great practice for this kind of stamina.

However, one important thing to note is that the reasoning is not as "tight" as on the GMAT. For example, often the correct answers will include details that were not part of the original stimulus. But in these situations, it would be clear that none of the other answers were correct so in the end, this didn't negatively effect my practice.

Good luck!

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by aslan » Thu Nov 25, 2010 4:26 am
760girl:I hear ye.....will def start on LSAT CR now.

Basically what I have gathered from your debrief is that to get your score from 41-44 you just did more practice.... .Verbal only seems to get better with bone hard practice!

I also believe in Ttron's statement regarding verbal as tilting the balance towards a great score.....it certainly seems to count more than quant in bringing it up

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by harsh.champ » Tue Nov 30, 2010 12:38 pm
Gr8 advice...I do agree that Verbal is the part where less time gives you greater dividends..
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by gmat_Tutor » Wed Dec 01, 2010 4:04 am
Inspiring....