730 (q-48, v-42)

Hi all, I gave GMAT on the 30th of June and would like to share my experience. I would try to keep it short and relevant. I am satisfied with my overall and verbal score; however I found the Quant section to be very tough. The standard of diffic…

Hi all,
I gave GMAT on the 30th of June and would like to share my experience. I would try to keep it short and relevant. I am satisfied with my overall and verbal score; however I found the Quant section to be very tough. The standard of difficulty for quants was much higher than what I had experienced while giving the practice tests of GMAT prep or other tests. Hence I could not do that well in the Quants section.

The Test:
Essays: I had not written any essay before the test. I would strongly suggest writing a couple of essays under timed conditions, even if you feel you are a good writer. I got manageable topics both for the issue (Computers-Boon or Bane) and argument section, however I found half an hour quite insufficient. So I would strongly recommend practicing writing a few essays within the time limits.

Quants: I found the overall level of difficulty to be much harder than what normally comes in the practice tests. I got a rude shock reading the first question itself. I was expecting something simple and straight-forward. However I got some difficult word problem which took me over 4 minutes to solve. After that it all went downhill from there. I did not get any Probability question but lots of tough (I felt so) Data Sufficiency questions. Normally during the practice tests, I would finish quants section 10-15 minutes before time, but in the exam 12 minutes were left and I still had to answer 10 more questions. I had to mark few of them randomly because I was afraid I might miss answering some questions. I know I lost some points there itself. I managed to finish the quants section somehow. During the break I was thinking; all is lost, and when should I give the test again. I was really taken aback by the quants section and I knew I had screwed it up.

Verbal: Anyways after the break the verbal section started and I got few easy sentence correction questions. I am normally good in verbal and these questions helped me regain my confidence which I had lost after the quants debacle. After that I got a big but normal RC passage. The CR questions were also straight forward and I did not face much problem in any of them. Got only one bold-face question, but quite straight forward. There were a lot of SC questions however most of them were manageable. I finished the verbal section almost 20 minutes before time.
I was confident about my verbal performance; however after the fiasco in the quant section I was not expecting a good score. So, when the final score came up on the screen, the relief I felt was amazing. I know I could have improved my score by 10-20 points at least if the quants section would have come on expected lines, but I guess this unpredictability is what makes GMAT what it is. Also, it shows that even if you feel you have screwed up you can still get better than expected scores.

The Preparation:
I booked GMAT exactly two months before the test date and started preparing from then. I bought OG 11 and KAPLAN as well as Princeton 2006 edition. I also downloaded a lot of stuff from the net. However, my suggestion will be:
Do OG completely, however expect quants to be tougher in the main exam. I felt questions in OG normally target the 600-700 range. Questions in the 700-800 range are much tougher.
Get hold of the KAPLAN cd. I did not find the book that great. Do math from KAPLAN. The questions are bit tougher than OG.
You can almost completely ignore Princeton. Its very easy and will not help in getting higher scores.
Read the SC and CR tips and tricks from Manhattan Guide (available online or buy the book). Its the best source for understanding SC. Make sure you go through it once.
I gave a lot of practice tests. However I had to format my laptop few days back so I do not have the exact scores with me. But this is my analysis of the tests:
1.GMAT Prep: Tests are quite accurate. Practice material is not. I got 710 and 720 in the two tests.
2.KAPLAN: Give the tests; do not bother about the scores. Just analyze your mistakes and note them.
3.Princeton: Give the tests, dont bother about the scores. Their algorithm is also messed up. The tests are relatively easy and analyze your mistakes.
4.Manhattan: I gave only one test which is available online for free. I found the test really good. The quants section is comparatively tough; however I got similar difficulty level in the main test.
5.If you have time you can do Powerprep, 800Test, Cambridge for practice but do not take them to be an accurate representation of the real test.

All in all, its more important to analyze your mistakes and focus on those areas. It is not important to solve more questions or give more tests. I found GMAT to be a really smart exam and I have developed a lot of respect for this test. You cannot cheat the test. You should focus on areas where you are weak and try to see where you are going wrong. Solving more and more SC questions will not help unless you do not understand the underlying concept of SC.
I would be happy to help anyone, who needs any help in their preparation.

Great score man.. and your verbal score is really awesome.. congrats!! 😉

Great score buddy :thumbsup: ...All the best for apping ...

Thanks 😃

congrats for your good score of 730. your verbal is too good man........
plz let me knw the material u referred for verbal as well as quant. i gave my GMAT yesterday and scored 580 (q-47, v-23). screwed up badly in verbal and that spoiled my score.
plz guide me as i really want to get 700+ in my next attempt.

well done dude... i have 2 months left for my exam and i found ur post to be promising for my prep. thanks for sharing ur experience 😃

well in general i was stronger in verbal than in quants, but GMAT tests a lot of grammar in which i make a lot of mistakes.
The best resource i found was Manhattan's guide for verbal. Their section for Sentence Correction is really good. I think it has some eight diff types, and mostly all questions come from that selection only. You can refer Princeton's verbal guide as well.

I don't think you can prepare much for Critical Reasoning. Basic rules like identifying the conclusion and staying within the scope of the argument will help you solve most of the questions.

For RC you will have to figure out what works for you. For me, I used to read the passage once completely and throughly and would then answer the questions. Since I was able to retain most of the stuff i did not need to read the passage again and again, which saves a lot of time. But you might want to try some other strategy, like skimming over the passage once and then closely reading it depending on the question. However since most of GMAT passages are arcane and boring, it would help if you start reading a lot. It will improve your reading speed as well as get you used to reading passages.

Other than that i don't have anything else which you already don't know. Most of the questions in Verbal are easily tackled by Process of Elimination rather than looking for the right answer. Keep eliminating options which cannot be right and you will land up with the right choice.

Hope this helps

Congrats Man..too good score.....I had also written GMAT in Apr 09 and had scored 600 Q49 V 24 . I can score 49 in quants on any given day , however verbal is such a big issue for me.I was never good at verbal , in fact grammar was a monster for me at school. Anothe problem is RC . Normally my reading speed is pretty good but I think I get very conscious during the exam and miss out on speed. Can you please help . I have never scored more than 35 in verbal in GMATprep.

Kudos to you !
Congrats buddy !

Congrats dude !!!

Great score dude...congrats!

great work mate.. i have 3 mnths to prepare so this way sounds good.