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How can I increase my GMAT score?

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How can I increase my GMAT score?

by Vidushi Dahiya » Mon Jul 09, 2018 7:45 am
Hi everyone!

I gave my GMAT diagnostic test on 27th May, 2018 and got a very low score of 300 (Q21, V9). After that, I have been continuously preparing for the test and gave my second mock test on 20th June, 2018 and got a score of 510 (Q44, V17). I was satisfied with my progress and was motivated to get a better (improved) score on the next mock test.
So, after looking at my score, I was confident about my quant section and decided to give all of my attention to the verbal section.

After 20 days of preparation, I gave my third mock test today and was shocked that my score dropped to 420 (Q39, V9) from my last performance.
I know the reason behind the drop in my quant section, i.e. lack of practice after my 2nd test but, I am unable to figure out the reason for the drop in the verbal section.

Any kind of suggestion for improving my individual section, as well as an overall score will be appreciated.

P.S - I have been taking GMAT classes from The Princeton Review (India) since the day I took my diagnostic test.

Thank You.

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by Rich.C@EMPOWERgmat.com » Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:12 pm
Hi Vidushi Dahiya,

Those types of results in the Verbal section imply that you're "winging it" when working through Verbal questions - and that you are probably not using a consistent set of Tactics when working through the Verbal section.

1) What "steps" do you go through when working through a typical SC, RC and CR prompt?
2) How often do you take notes when working on a Verbal question (and how often do you just do the work "in your head"?)?

Beyond those questions, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on your timeline and goals:

3) What is your goal score?
4) When are you planning to take the GMAT?
5) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
6) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

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hi

by Scott@TargetTestPrep » Fri Jul 13, 2018 9:09 am
Hi Vidushi,

I'm glad you reached out and I'm happy to help! For starters, it seems as though you have been rushing into taking practice exams prior to fully mastering GMAT verbal. Do you think that could be the case?

With that said, you also may consider altering your study routine so that you can learn the foundations of GMAT verbal prior to diving back into practice tests. You are going to want to use a resource that allows you to FIRST learn the concepts and strategies related to SC, CR, and RC, and then you will need to put in a lot of dedicated practice to test yourself on the areas you have reviewed. For example, let's say you start by learning about Critical Reasoning. Your first goal is to fully master the individual CR topics: strengthening, weakening, resolve the paradox, etc. As you learn each CR problem type, do focused practice so you can track your knowledge in the topic. If, for example, you get a weakening question wrong, ask yourself why. Did you make a careless mistake? Did you not recognize the specific CR question type? Were you doing too much analysis in your head? Did you skip over a keyword in an answer choice? You must thoroughly analyze your mistakes and seek to turn weaknesses into strengths by focusing on the question types you dread seeing and the questions you take a long time to answer correctly. You will want to follow this process for all verbal topics.

Each time you strengthen your understanding of a topic and your skill in answering questions of a particular type, you increase your odds of hitting your score goal. You know that there are types of questions that you are happy to see and types that you would rather not see, and questions that you take a long time to answer correctly. Learn to more effectively answer the types of questions that you would rather not see, and make them into your favorite types. Learn to efficiently answer questions that you currently take five minutes to answer. By finding, say, a dozen weaker verbal areas and turning them into strong areas, you will make great progress toward hitting your verbal score goal. If a dozen areas turn out not to be enough, strengthen some more areas.

When you do dozens of the same type of question one after the other, you learn just what it takes to get questions of that type correct consistently. If you aren't getting close to 90 percent of questions of a certain type correct, go back and seek to better understand how that type of question works, and then do more questions of that type until you get to at least around 90 percent accuracy in your training. If you get 100 percent of some sets correct, even better.

So, work on accuracy and generally finding correct answers, work on specific weaker areas one by one to make them strong areas, and when you take a practice GMAT or the real thing, take all the time per question available to do your absolute best to get right answers consistently. The GMAT is essentially a game of seeing how many right answers you can get in the time allotted. Approach the test with that conception in mind, and focus intently on the question in front of you with one goal in mind: getting a CORRECT answer.

You also may find it helpful to read my article for more information regarding how to score a 700+ on the GMAT.

Feel free to reach out with any further questions.

Good luck!
Last edited by Scott@TargetTestPrep on Sat Jul 14, 2018 7:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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by Vidushi Dahiya » Sat Jul 14, 2018 7:11 am
Rich.C@EMPOWERgmat.com wrote:Hi Vidushi Dahiya,

Those types of results in the Verbal section imply that you're "winging it" when working through Verbal questions - and that you are probably not using a consistent set of Tactics when working through the Verbal section.

1) What "steps" do you go through when working through a typical SC, RC and CR prompt?
2) How often do you take notes when working on a Verbal question (and how often do you just do the work "in your head"?)?

Beyond those questions, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on your timeline and goals:

3) What is your goal score?
4) When are you planning to take the GMAT?
5) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
6) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

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

I have replied to your questions on my post on the gmatclub.com. Looking forward to your reply there.

Thank You!

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reply

by Vidushi Dahiya » Sat Jul 14, 2018 7:30 am
Scott@TargetTestPrep wrote:Hi Vidushi,

I'm glad you reached out and I'm happy to help! For starters, it seems as though you have been rushing into taking practice exams prior to fully mastering GMAT verbal. Do you think that could be the case?

With that said, you also may consider altering your study routine so that you can learn the foundations of GMAT verbal prior to diving back into practice tests. You are going to want to use a resource that allows you to FIRST learn the concepts and strategies related to SC, CR, and RC, and then you will need to put in a lot of dedicated practice to test yourself on the areas you have reviewed. For example, let's say you start by learning about Critical Reasoning. Your first goal is to fully master the individual CR topics: strengthening, weakening, resolve the paradox, etc. As you learn each CR problem type, do focused practice so you can track your knowledge in the topic. If, for example, you get a weakening question wrong, ask yourself why. Did you make a careless mistake? Did you not recognize the specific CR question type? Were you doing too much analysis in your head? Did you skip over a keyword in an answer choice? You must thoroughly analyze your mistakes and seek to turn weaknesses into strengths by focusing on the question types you dread seeing and the questions you take a long time to answer correctly. You will want to follow this process for all verbal topics.

Each time you strengthen your understanding of a topic and your skill in answering questions of a particular type, you increase your odds of hitting your score goal. You know that there are types of questions that you are happy to see and types that you would rather not see, and questions that you take a long time to answer correctly. Learn to more effectively answer the types of questions that you would rather not see, and make them into your favorite types. Learn to efficiently answer questions that you currently take five minutes to answer. By finding, say, a dozen weaker quant areas and turning them into strong areas, you will make great progress toward hitting your verbal score goal. If a dozen areas turn out not to be enough, strengthen some more areas.

When you do dozens of the same type of question one after the other, you learn just what it takes to get questions of that type correct consistently. If you aren't getting close to 90 percent of questions of a certain type correct, go back and seek to better understand how that type of question works, and then do more questions of that type until you get to at least around 90 percent accuracy in your training. If you get 100 percent of some sets correct, even better.

So, work on accuracy and generally finding correct answers, work on specific weaker areas one by one to make them strong areas, and when you take a practice GMAT or the real thing, take all the time per question available to do your absolute best to get right answers consistently. The GMAT is essentially a game of seeing how many right answers you can get in the time allotted. Approach the test with that conception in mind, and focus intently on the question in front of you with one goal in mind: getting a CORRECT answer.

You also may find it helpful to read my article for more information regarding how to score a 700+ on the GMAT.

Feel free to reach out with any further questions.

Good luck!
Hi Scott,

Thank you so much for your reply and I would like to mention that you have made me think about how I used to approach the questions - I always focused on getting them correct, SOMEHOW, BY LUCK (especially, in Verbal). I never thought of practicing to a limit where I can get more than 90% questions correct. I used to believe that if I have solved about 70% questions right, then I am done with my efforts for that topic.
I will surely work on improving my score by the method you suggested.

I have a doubt - See, I have made my study plan in such a way that I practice each category questions daily so that, I don't forget the techniques which I learned earlier (for the past 6 weeks - in my coaching classes). I solve 15-20 SC questions, 30 PS+DS (Quant), 4-5 passages with 3-4 questions each and currently I am learning/studying CR in my classroom course. I also make sure to review each and every question properly, even if I get it correct - just to make sure that I am using the right technique.
The reason for solving Quant and Verbal every day is because as I told in my post earlier that before my last mock, I didn't practice quant thinking that I can get a min score of 44 (as I did earlier) without even practicing it but, today when I try to solve questions, I tend to forget the techniques. Therefore, to keep everything in my mind, I am following this plan.
So, do you think that this plan will work? Or am I again wasting my time?

One more thing, I have a deadline of 31st August to submit my GMAT score for an admission application. So, I don't have much time to individually prepare every section. That's why I tend to solve each daily.

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by ceilidh.erickson » Sat Jul 14, 2018 7:41 am
Vidushi Dahiya wrote: I gave my GMAT diagnostic test on 27th May, 2018 and got a very low score of 300 (Q21, V9). After that, I have been continuously preparing for the test and gave my second mock test on 20th June, 2018 and got a score of 510 (Q44, V17). I was satisfied with my progress and was motivated to get a better (improved) score on the next mock test.
So, after looking at my score, I was confident about my quant section and decided to give all of my attention to the verbal section.

After 20 days of preparation, I gave my third mock test today and was shocked that my score dropped to 420 (Q39, V9) from my last performance.
I know the reason behind the drop in my quant section, i.e. lack of practice after my 2nd test but, I am unable to figure out the reason for the drop in the verbal section.
Scott is definitely right about learning the material topic-by-topic before taking more practice exams.

Another likely factor when I see scores this low / this inconsistent: TIMING.
- did you run out of time on either section?
- did you fall behind and have to rush to catch up?
- or did you speed through and finish with too much time to spare?

Remember - the GMAT is not just a test of your content knowledge. It's a test of your decision-making, and part of that is deciding when to guess and move on. For more advice on building timing practice into your studies, see:

https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/blog ... ut-timing/

https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/blog ... -to-study/

https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/blog ... rt-1-of-3/

https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/blog ... rt-2-of-3/

https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/blog ... mat-quant/

https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/blog ... ng-danger/

https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/blog ... -going-up/
Ceilidh Erickson
EdM in Mind, Brain, and Education
Harvard Graduate School of Education