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Bombed GMAT again 580..

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Bombed GMAT again 580..

by superbrat123 » Sun Mar 22, 2009 7:55 pm
Folks,

I am really distraught with myself and GMAT. Here is my story....
Retake - Q44,V25 --> 580

Took the exam in Nov last yr and got a 550 (Q39, V29). On the GMATprep, I scored 640,650 and 680 (retake) in the week prior to the exam. On MGMAT, I scored 630,640 in the week before the exam (Yep, I took 5 tests in 1 week).

Studied with MGMAT, OG 11, Kaplan, Kaplan800, 1000 SC, 1000 CR, 1000 RC, 1000 DS, 1000 PS, PowerPrep CR bible

Took time off, went at the monster again. Even enrolled in a prep class (veritas). Folks --> Please don't ever enroll in veritas..Its an absolute waste of time & $$$...

Took MGMAT 1 week before and scored a 680, took GMAT prep again and got a 650. Took 1 more MGMAT and scored a 650...
I was hoping to score somewhere between 650 and 680 since MGMAT is considered relatively difficult when compared to GMATPrep

The hit rates were 60% on CR and RC and about 65% on SC on the MGMAT and GMAT prep tests

Test day--AWA was straightforward.. Started off well in Q until I hit a geometry question and then started getting a bunch of DS questions based on number properties which took up a lot of time. I ran out of time for the last 2 questions and had to guess them. I felt I would get somewhere around 46 for Q..So 44 was not that bad

Now Verbal, I got an SC and a CR to start off with and I think I nailed them. Then I got an RC which was very abstract and I think I bombed it. Got 2 more SC's and 2 more CR's and then got 1 more RC which was even more difficult compared to the previous one, After that I got a bunch of SC's and CR's interspersed with an RC. I was able to complete all of the questions on time and expected somewhere around 36-38 as I felt much more comfortable than any of the MGMAT or GMATPrep Verbal sections..

And then bang, the score pops up on the screen...and I am like WTF!!!!
BTW, got a 1480 in my GRE (15 yrs back, Q-780, V-700). So, either I became dumb in the past 15 yrs :-) or I am just screwing up in the tests...

Someone suggested that the best way to improve verbal is to improve your reading speed since it affects all 3 components of Verbal..So, started reading 4-5 passages everyday from Economist on abstract topics...

Planning to give it 1 more time in the next 2-3 months depending on how I do in the practice tests. Want to make sure that I hit 40 in Verbal consistently before I even think of attempting it...

Tips/suggestions on how to increase my Verbal Component to 40

thanks!

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by aabsih » Sun Mar 22, 2009 8:33 pm
Hi superbrat123,

You seem to have a good attitude towards the whole situation. Keep your head up and I'm sure you'll do better the next time around.

Here's my feedback for verbal prep:


For RC
The most important thing for me over here was to develop an understanding of the passage. Don't skim. Don't skip over things. Read it in such a way that you understand what the author is trying to convey.

I found that McGraw Hill's Conquering GMAT Verbal and Writing helped me here. I haven't seen others reference this book on this forum, but I actually looked at Chapters 4 and 5 of the book about 4 days before the exam. I was horrible at RC and wanted to remedy this. Chapter 4 basically tells you what to look for (scope, main idea, and purpose), and chapter 5 goes into specific strategies. In short, what I was able to get from the book is the habit of reading a passage actively and constantly looking for the intent of each part and paragraph.

During a passage I would ask myself what the intent of a specific part is. This will help you figure out the overall meaning and purpose of the paragraph, which you will need in some of the questions. Other questions can be answered directly from the passage, but make sure you are careful not to choose answers that are tempting just because they feature certain keywords.

I personally did not find a need to write out any notes during my reading, but others find it useful. See what suits your style.

One more important thing to keep in mind: Tackle every passage head on, with full confidence. By the time I took the real GMAT exam, I was almost telling myself "bring it on" whenever I came across a passage. This attitude helped me a lot. Look at it this way, if you understand the overall idea and purpose of the passage, then you can answer the difficult questions. The other questions can be answered straight from the passage; how much easier can it get, right?

For SC
I used the Manhattan SC book. I found it very helpful and it helped me improve my SC performance significantly and quickly. I see that you are using the PS SC Bible which I haven't used, but should cover the same information. Once you have the basics nailed (for me it was by reading the book from start to finish), then practice as many questions as you can. I would have liked to read the Manhattan SC book one more time but I never got the chance during my prep, and I guess that's why I was still making some SC mistakes in my practice. This is definitely the section people can improve on the most.

For CR
The advice for these questions is the same almost everywhere I read. Start by reading the question, and then read the paragraph and try to find the logical elements: premises, evidence, and conclusion. With enough practice you will be able to pick up on the underlying assumptions as well.

It's getting late on my side, and I need to get back to my studying. Good luck with everything, I am sure you will do great. Third time's a charm, right?

aabsih

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by NethraN » Mon Mar 23, 2009 12:44 am
Hey I took my GMAT on March second and got 570 for the same break up 44 in Quant and 25 in Verbal. 10 points injustice :(

Anyways good luck with your preparation. Even am planning to give it another shot after 2 months.
Nethra

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by superbrat123 » Mon Mar 23, 2009 7:34 pm
aabsih wrote:Hi superbrat123,

You seem to have a good attitude towards the whole situation. Keep your head up and I'm sure you'll do better the next time around.

Here's my feedback for verbal prep:


For RC
The most important thing for me over here was to develop an understanding of the passage. Don't skim. Don't skip over things. Read it in such a way that you understand what the author is trying to convey.

I found that McGraw Hill's Conquering GMAT Verbal and Writing helped me here. I haven't seen others reference this book on this forum, but I actually looked at Chapters 4 and 5 of the book about 4 days before the exam. I was horrible at RC and wanted to remedy this. Chapter 4 basically tells you what to look for (scope, main idea, and purpose), and chapter 5 goes into specific strategies. In short, what I was able to get from the book is the habit of reading a passage actively and constantly looking for the intent of each part and paragraph.

During a passage I would ask myself what the intent of a specific part is. This will help you figure out the overall meaning and purpose of the paragraph, which you will need in some of the questions. Other questions can be answered directly from the passage, but make sure you are careful not to choose answers that are tempting just because they feature certain keywords.

I personally did not find a need to write out any notes during my reading, but others find it useful. See what suits your style.

One more important thing to keep in mind: Tackle every passage head on, with full confidence. By the time I took the real GMAT exam, I was almost telling myself "bring it on" whenever I came across a passage. This attitude helped me a lot. Look at it this way, if you understand the overall idea and purpose of the passage, then you can answer the difficult questions. The other questions can be answered straight from the passage; how much easier can it get, right?

For SC
I used the Manhattan SC book. I found it very helpful and it helped me improve my SC performance significantly and quickly. I see that you are using the PS SC Bible which I haven't used, but should cover the same information. Once you have the basics nailed (for me it was by reading the book from start to finish), then practice as many questions as you can. I would have liked to read the Manhattan SC book one more time but I never got the chance during my prep, and I guess that's why I was still making some SC mistakes in my practice. This is definitely the section people can improve on the most.

For CR
The advice for these questions is the same almost everywhere I read. Start by reading the question, and then read the paragraph and try to find the logical elements: premises, evidence, and conclusion. With enough practice you will be able to pick up on the underlying assumptions as well.

It's getting late on my side, and I need to get back to my studying. Good luck with everything, I am sure you will do great. Third time's a charm, right?

aabsih


Appreciate your feedback. The mistake I tend to make is to skim over the RC passages rather than understanding the gist of the passage. As I start preparing for the beast one more time, I will pay more attention in understanding the tone/scope/main point of what the passage is trying to convey rather than browsing the passage without trying to comprehend it

Thanks again for your feedback n Good luck with your studies

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by kobel51 » Tue Mar 24, 2009 9:37 am
I read the passage for the big ideas and structure and I "map" it everytime. I give myself 60seconds per paragraph to map the passage.

The map is generally 12-20 words per paragraph in chart/bullet point notation like:

====================================
Contrast 2 theories
* Egg came before chicken - most popular
* Chicken came 1st - backed by evidence - Author's view
====================================

I find that if I write down the gist of each paragraph, I can answer the questions so much faster!