After being fairly active here for long, I finally took the GMAT yesterday and while I was initially very happy to see a 700 on the screen, the break-up of the score has since taken away some of its sheen. While a 42 in verbal is more than what I had expected, a 44 in quant is definitely much lower than what I thought I would get. It is just about 63rd %ile or so. In my practice tests I was consistently getting a quant score of 47+ and a verbal score of 36+ so this strange inversion of marks in the two sections has me baffled.
Just to give a quick background, I have a couple of years of work experience and currently working with a large data analytics firm in India. I started my prep long time back and referred to the Manhattan books and the OG13 + OG supplements initially but due to work had to halt my prep. Restarted again and got my hands on all the verbal books of Aristotle Prep this time, plus I attended their online classes that came free with the books, which I found very useful. Referred Barron's also but it was very easy and not of much help.
While I was generally good in Quant, DS was my bug bear but I still used to get an accuracy of around 60-65% in DS. In PS I had close to 90% accuracy.
In Verbal I found CR to be relatively simple and just did the questions in the OGs. In SC I was making the classic mistake of going with the answer that 'sounded' correct. On low difficulty questions this used to work but on high difficulty questions I was consistently getting the answer wrong. While I tried to make a conscious effort to curb this tendency, I'm not sure to what extent I succeeded. I really liked the SC Grail though; it does an excellent job of explaining all the SC rules and concepts in 'understandable' English.
For RC I was only concentrating on doing more and more practice passages. I did all the OG passages, the 20 or so passages in Manhattan and the 60 passages in the RC Grail. Overall I was getting 3 out of 4 questions correct in RC.
Test Day – There was nothing unusual that happened on test day. I reached the testing centre on time and, while I was a little nervous, it was nothing that I couldn't manage. In fact in the end when I saw a 700 on the screen I was quite satisfied because I had been consistently scoring in the range of 680-720 in my practice tests. It was only when I saw the 44 in Quant that I started to worry.
I am targeting the top business schools , and I know for a fact that they require an 80th %ile on the quant section.
While I am not averse to retaking the GMAT, I am really not sure what I could do differently now to improve my quant score. I am also not sure whether I can get a 42 on verbal for a second time.
What if the score falls instead of increasing? Any thoughts will be much appreciated.
All in all, while I did get a 700, something tells me I'm not yet done with the GMAT (or maybe it's the other way around!)