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What are the best GMAT Prep books to use?

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What are the best GMAT Prep books to use?

by Ellie_Aja » Sat Nov 18, 2017 7:15 am
Hello,
I am planning on taking my GMAT next year over the summer and I am a bit confused as to which study books to buy. I was initially going to purchase the GMAT Official Guide 2018 Bundle: Books + Online https://www.amazon.com/dp/1119396174/re ... eAbEKKABB8
From Amazon but the more I research, I found out that's it's not my best choice since it doesn't fully prepare you for the GMAT. I also found GMAT Prep Guide 2017-2018: Test Prep Book & Practice Exam Questions for the Analytical Writing, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative, and Verbal Sections on the GMAC Graduate Management Admission Test https://www.amazon.com/dp/1628454539/re ... eAb5DMEHTX
However, I am not sure if it's enough to get me ready for the GMAT. Please help, I appreciate any tips and advice on what to do.
Thanks!

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by Rich.C@EMPOWERgmat.com » Sun Nov 19, 2017 11:28 am
Hi Ellie Aja,

Many Test Takers use a variety of different study materials as they prepare for the GMAT, so focusing on just one book will likely NOT be enough material to help you get to your Score Goal. Almost everyone uses one of the recent main Official Guides - since each of those books contains so many realistic practice questions and the 'content' sections are decent enough to help you relearn the 'basics.' Those books are not designed to teach you any of the Tactics, patterns or little 'secrets' to the Test though, so you might find it worthwhile to invest in a GMAT Course of some type (either Guided Self-Study or instructor-led).

Since it sounds like you're just beginning your studies, then it would be a good idea to take a FULL-LENGTH practice CAT Test; you can download 2 for free from www.mba.com (and they come with some additional practice materials). If you want to do a little studying first, so that you can familiarize yourself with the basic content and question types, then that's okay - but you shouldn't wait too long to take that initial CAT. That score will give us a good sense of your natural strengths and weaknesses and will help provide a basis for comparison as you continue to study. A FULL CAT takes about 4 hours to complete, so make sure that you've set aside enough time to take it in one sitting. Once you have those scores, you should report back here and we can come up with a study plan.

I'd like to know a bit more about your timeline and goals:
1) What is your goal score?
2) When are you planning to take the GMAT?
3) When are you planning to apply to Business School?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
Contact Rich at Rich.C@empowergmat.com
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by ceilidh.erickson » Mon Nov 20, 2017 8:35 am
Ellie_Aja wrote:Hello,
I am planning on taking my GMAT next year over the summer and I am a bit confused as to which study books to buy. I was initially going to purchase the GMAT Official Guide 2018 Bundle: Books + Online https://www.amazon.com/dp/1119396174/re ... eAbEKKABB8
From Amazon but the more I research, I found out that's it's not my best choice since it doesn't fully prepare you for the GMAT. I also found GMAT Prep Guide 2017-2018: Test Prep Book & Practice Exam Questions for the Analytical Writing, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative, and Verbal Sections on the GMAC Graduate Management Admission Test https://www.amazon.com/dp/1628454539/re ... eAb5DMEHTX
However, I am not sure if it's enough to get me ready for the GMAT. Please help, I appreciate any tips and advice on what to do.
Thanks!
I have never even heard of the "GMAT Advanced Review Strategy Team," the 2nd link you mention. It's certainly not a well-reputed company that offers classes and tutoring. You want to buy books that were written by real educators - people who have worked with thousands of students and understand their difficulties. There are a lot of books out there with official-sounding titles that might be written by hacks, or people who have never worked with actual students.

Go to the "GMAT Prep Reviews" tab here on BTG and see what students have said about the real companies they've worked with.

You will certainly need to purchase official materials written by GMAC (the 1st link you mention). Most students find these insufficient, though. They provide problems to practice with, but they don't explain the underlying content or strategies. For that, I strongly recommend that you purchase strategy guides from a well-known, reputable company (one that lists its authors by name, one that only hires 99th percentile educators, etc).
Ceilidh Erickson
EdM in Mind, Brain, and Education
Harvard Graduate School of Education