from 610 to 750!! What worked, what didn't + tools for you

Find out how Beat The GMAT members tackled GMAT test prep with positive results. Get tips on GMAT test prep materials, online courses, study tips, and more.
This topic has expert replies
Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts
Posts: 207
Joined: 09 Mar 2009
Thanked: 115 times
Followed by:23 members
GMAT Score:750

by TedCornell » Tue May 19, 2009 9:24 am
Thank you Roma, and best of luck to you!

Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts
Posts: 11
Joined: 20 Mar 2009
Thanked: 1 times


by yash8 » Thu May 21, 2009 11:43 pm
awesome score buddy :lol:

User avatar
Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts
Posts: 233
Joined: 09 Jun 2008
Thanked: 5 times

by blaster » Wed Dec 23, 2009 9:22 am
how many hours did you studied?

Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
Posts: 5
Joined: 15 Feb 2009

by hala0987 » Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:58 am
Ted Way to Go ...Amazing score! I'm exactly in the 610 situation right now, its my 4th time , from 440, to 540, to 600 to 610...I already have a plan and working on it, 3 15 minute Mini Ptests a day ( all 3 Verbal Sections) from and i have a countdown excel sheet too which i will share...I plan to take a Full PTest this week , every week is my ultimate plan and my aim is to review the questions after every Ptest I do in order to understand them and avoid future mistakes...I just opened the GmatFix link hoping to find the good resources you talked about

My test day is on April 7th...People like you bring me up when i get down about the test. You give me great hope to get a 700....I hope you can relate and help me if i need help :)
Countdown Sheet.xls
Fix the 53 to the number of days till your test day and add in your practice tests
(36.5 KiB) Downloaded 116 times

User avatar
Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts
Posts: 22
Joined: 17 Jul 2008
Followed by:1 members

by gmat_best-shot » Wed Feb 24, 2010 2:21 am
Congratulations Ted. And to this very supportive community :). Well my story begins today. I'll be happy to help and be helped. Cheers.

Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
Posts: 60
Joined: 07 Jan 2009
Thanked: 12 times
GMAT Score:750

by arzanr » Fri Feb 26, 2010 9:56 am
Congrats on the big jump. What's more your experience can probably be incorporated in to the MBA admissions process as well showing ad coms how you overcame failure and succeeded in the end. Although from the date of the post, I'm guessing you've applied last fall already.

One piece of advice I'd add to any future test takers is to read at least 1-2 debriefs like this one every week. It keeps the motivation/inspiration/faith burning! Say to yourself - "If x, y and z can do it, so can I."

Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts
Posts: 20
Joined: 22 Feb 2010
Thanked: 3 times

by Rin12 » Fri Feb 26, 2010 11:44 am
Great debrief and congrats on the score!! I really appreciated your topic breakdown and the schedule!! Very helpful :)

Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts
Posts: 10
Joined: 27 Feb 2010
Location: Arlington, VA
Followed by:1 members

by RHINO » Fri Apr 02, 2010 11:03 pm
After studying for 6 months and averaging 680 on a few MGMAT practice tests I took the real GMAT today and got a 590. Needless to say I'm confused and deflated, but this thread gives me some hope. If anyone else is trying to make a similar jump and wants to discuss progress/strategy, I am certainly game. I am striving for a 650, and the idea of studying again, after all the work over this past 6 months, is incredibly daunting right now.

User avatar
Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
Posts: 9
Joined: 20 May 2010

by ponds_ggn » Tue Jun 01, 2010 11:55 am

Can you tell me how to handle CR apart from PowerScore CR book and OG?

Thanks in advance !

Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
Posts: 52
Joined: 07 Jun 2010
Location: India
Thanked: 3 times
Followed by:1 members
GMAT Score:720

by monusangeeta » Thu Jun 24, 2010 11:52 pm
Hey Ted,

Congrats...fantastic score!!!....Jumping from 610 to 750 indeed shows your hardwork and determination. I gave my GMAT couple of months back and got 590 score and now I am preparing for it again with full throttle...your score is really entire weakness lies in Verbal...Maths i can score 47-48 withour preparation...could you please suggest something to me...specially SC and CR....In CR i have found my weakness in weakening Qs and in SC...Logical predication is my weak area....

Also, give me some tips to increase the endurance as well...I have realized i get most of the Qs wrong at the end of the exam when my brain simply refuse to function... :(

Congrates again..


User avatar
Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
Posts: 6
Joined: 20 Aug 2008

by rohitm1986 » Fri Jun 25, 2010 2:56 am
TedCornell wrote:Hi guys,

First I'd like to thank the founders and supporters of this forum and others like it. This is a great community where everyone helps everyone else. I've been a passive surfer for months, looking up techniques, following advice, etc

The first time I took my test, I had a 610. Thanks to all those who contributed, I was able to refine my GMAT prep; I retook the test 3 months later and scored a 750! Yeah I know, lucky dog. Since the forum has been so helpful, I decided to share what I did right, and what I did wrong.

THINGS I DID WRONG (leading up to my 610 score)
- Procrastination: I have the tendency to always find an excuse for why I can't do what I should when I should. I was supposed to take the GMAT 6 months ago to meet my deadlines, but I would study hard for a week, then not do much for another. This definitely delayed my progress.

- Study the same lesson from different books: Ok, pretty much all decent gmat books have a lesson on geometry, a lesson on fractions & percentages, a lesson on grammar: I can only speak for myself but I have to say that learning the same technique by different names from different books was probably counter productive. I ended up slightly confused. I found that I felt a lot better working from the best book for a given topic.

- Too little review: When I did practice exercises and tests, I didn't spend as much time as I should have going over the content. We all know that the Official Guide is great for practice but a bit skimpy on explanations. You must go over EVERY SINGLE answer/explanation available to you.

- Schedule the test in the morning: I'm not a morning person, so scheduling the test in the morning was never a good idea for me. That morning I had to rush to the test center; I was tired, groggy and stressed all at once. No fun and my score was a reflection of that.

THINGS I DID RIGHT (leading up to my 750 score)
- Devise a plan of study: Studying for the GMAT is essentially like going on a diet. The first week, you're gung-ho and ready to go. You have new books, big ideas and all the enthusiasm in the world. You want to do everything. By the 4th week, it's a different story. After my first test, I knew that I would take the exam again, so I decided to write up a plan of study. The key is that it had to be a realistic plan. Don't start off at a rhythm that you cannot maintain. I divided the GMAT content into its topics. My plan was divided into two-week cycles as such:

oReview and practice 3 topics a day spending 45 minutes on each topic and taking 10 minutes break between topics (which topic you do on which day doesn't really matter as long as you do them all)
oAfter 2 weeks, all topics are covered. Take a full length practice test in one sitting (besides the two 10minute breaks) in a quiet environment.
oGo over the exam to figure out what you got wrong, try to find out why, and establish specific goals for improving over the next 2 weeks. Goals typically fell in one of three areas: pacing, mastery of content, or minimizing careless errors

- I divided the GMAT into the topics below:
o17 QUANT topics: Number Properties, Fractions-Decimals-Percents, Ratios-Proportions, Exponents-Roots, Statistics-Data Interpretation, Sets, Combinatorics-Probability, Linear Equations, Non-Linear Equations, Inequalities-Absolute Values, Rate-Work, Functions-Sequences, Lines-Angles, Triangles, Quadrilaterals, Circles, 3-d Geometry and Coordinate Geometry.
o14 VERBAL topics: Verb tense, Pronouns, Idioms, Modifiers, Parallel Structures, Subject-Verb Agreement, RC-Science, RC-Social Science, RC-Economics, CR-Weaken, CR-Strengthen, CR-Evaluate, CR-Inference, and CR-Resolve-Explain

- Spend time to go over your work!! I attribute most of my improvement to my dedication to review my work and really delve into why I missed each question and how I could have worked more efficiently even on those questions I got right. We know that the Official Guide is pretty much the bible of GMAT prep. Unfortunately it seems the solutions were written by people who would rather be doing something else. They're a bit skimpy. There is a great book I would recommend called The Official Guide Companion. It breaks down every quant question in the official guide to the minutest of details, and shows different approaches and guessing strategies for each question. I didn't find it too helpful for the easier questions, but it was an invaluable resource for the high-medium and hard questions.

- GmatPrep Test often: Unfortunately the GMATprep software has only 2 tests, but the last few weeks before my exam, I kept deleting and retaking the tests simply because they're the best available. Some people don't like that because they will see some of the same questions (true) but I felt the upside was too good to pass. After taking the test 4-5 times, it's true that your score will be inflated by the questions you're familiar with, but you will still see many new questions and ultimately I think GMATPrep is the only test that actually has the authentic content that you will face on game day. 4 weeks and earlier before your exam, you can take other tests, but I think from the 4 week mark in, you should take only GMATPrep. Ignore the score, focus on the content. Even if you see a question you know, hold yourself accountable for solving it rather than just picking the answer. I just told myself that I wanted to consistently score 40-50 points above my target score, so I kept taking GMATPrep and mastering its questions. I had a 770 my last GMATPrep and a 750 on the actual GMAT.

THE RESOURCES I USED (for my higher score, rated with the most important first)
' Official Guides (no point preparing for the GMAT without this)

- GMATFix's The Official Guide Companion (you can see the book at --> ScoreBoost Tools on menubar or just download the free preview that I attached :-)

- Flashcards (I studied flashcards just about every day. There are many good sets out there. I used the cards available on BeatTheGMAT and the set from the gmatfix website -- note that the full set is not free, but there is a healthy free set that you can add to your flashcards.

- Forums. Use them. There is always someone who has gone through your situation and who is willing to lend a hand.

Best of luck and don't give up!! :-)

thanx a lot for the debrief Ted ..... all the best ....

Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
Posts: 1
Joined: 14 Jun 2010

by xVxeVoxVx » Mon Jul 12, 2010 6:04 am
Hey Ted,
Awesome score bro! I've just started studying for my exam, which I will schedule in about 2 months. Your debrief is great and really helps us guys who are new to taking the test get some excellent advise and a solid starting point and map. I was having some problems recently on trying to set a structure on my study schedule, and I really like your 3 topics a day schedule! Thanks again man, and congratulations!

User avatar
Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
Posts: 5
Joined: 09 Sep 2010
Location: Mumbai,India

by wasifkhan » Mon Sep 13, 2010 3:51 am

Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
Posts: 2
Joined: 30 May 2011

by d.maguy » Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:16 am
Congratulations! Your debrief is really helpful.

Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
Posts: 4
Joined: 04 Apr 2011

by mahesh.aradhya » Wed Jun 29, 2011 7:10 am
Hey Thanks.for the details..