Friday, August 26, 2011

The G-Day

Moderate preparation levels; moderate practice levels - and here I am giving a debrief of GMAT #1.

Preparation :
I booked my exam for August 23, 2011, giving a complete 3 months for preparation. And I felt confident about my plan in mind. Until the big health blow and project deadlines in office broke my regular study hours. To see my progress levels, you can take a look at this blog.

Getting a good 41 days of preparation did not really get me reach my target. There was a good level of break here and there in between my prep schedule which ultimately lead me to think that I will not be able to score as much as I targeted. In course of my preparation, I realized, I was always scoring well in SC, as compared to other sections. Math is never my cup of tea, and this was something that hit me hard on my score. I would not say my verbal was too good, but at least I found it better than my Math score.

As with everyone else, RC is the weakest area, where I could not find much room for improvement, even after trying out different strategies. How much every modes I try for RC, during the test, all that stays in my mind is that I quickly finish off that particular RC quickly and move on. It came to me as a big blow on my G-Day.

Though my target score is very high, I consistently scored between 600 and 660 in all my practice tests. It was already a disappointment for me, as it is said, whatever you score in your practice tests is close to what you will score on test day. And something kept telling me, that I will score 650.

The Day:
My exam was scheduled at 10:00 am in the morning at a center just 11 km away from my house. So I decided I will start 2 hours early keeping in mind the traffic constraints. I started at 8:10 am hoping to reach at least half an hour before the scheduled test time. And to my disappointment, the traffic blocked me from all sides. Whichever different route I took, it was full of vehicles blocking the road. The biggest mistake I did was to drive my bike that day to the test. I reached the exam center sharp at 9:57 am, having informed the test center of my situation. I finally reached the center totally exhausted. And to my disappointment, the lift was nowhere close to stopping, when I reached the building.

The center was in the 6th floor and to add to all the traffic tragedy, I had to walk up all 6 floors by stairs. By the time I reached the 6th floor, my knees went shaky. I spoke to the center official, and I drank some water, and got ready for the test in the next 5-7 minutes. Given all the confusion, my mind was totally blocked, and was not functioning as much as it did during the practice tests. With just a few points to highlight my point of view on the issue and argument, I took a quick break of 5 minutes, had some fruits, and had water and started off with the Math section.

Math seemed good initially, but slowly the tiredness started creeping in. Towards the middle of the Math section, I was totally blank, and could do nothing but skip questions to compensate for the time loss. And so many DS questions at a stretch took a toll on my concentration levels. I have a mindset that I am weak in DS, and this added to the bad moments.  I was sure that my score was going down towards the end of the Math section

The break after the Math section, boosted me up at little, and verbal started off well. Though I took my chances on 1 or two questions, here and there, I was not completely off at any point of time. And I was sure that my score was not going to touch my target score.

And after scrolling through the pages after the test, I got my score.

A 650 with Q-44, and V-35 --- A mind game.. That’s what I thought, and that’s what I got.

Obviously not satisfied with my score. I have scheduled my GMAT #2 for October 31, 2011. Hope things work well this time. I am meanwhile taking a short break off preparation, reading through articles ob BTG, gmatClub forums. Any tips/suggestions to boost my score in my upcoming GMAT is welcome!


  1. I am in the exact same situation as you. I took the GMAT last Saturday and received a 640, which I am not at all happy about. I plan to retake the test at the end of October and hopefully increase my score to the 680-700 range.

    What is your study plan? I have started going through that Manhattan GMAT guides that target my weakest areas, but I'm starting to think that my time would be better spent just doing a ton of practice problems.

  2. I have booked my exam date, but seriously I have no clue how am going to work this out! I think I need to go through and thoroughly understand concepts in both Quant and Verbal, and do as many practice problems as possible.

    I have heard from quite a lot of people, that working with OG alone is sufficient enough to score good, provided we concentrate on the concept that each OG question adopts.

    Will keep you posted once I schedule my next 2 months..

  3. Looks like the test fatigue affected your score a lot. For a 700+ just the OG wont suffice, i mean going through all of the official stuff is must but more important is to understand how the test changes at the upper 700 levels. As for quant if you are through with the fundamentals do check the MGMAT Advanced Quant guide it's worth every penny to build an approach for tackling the 750+ level qs.

    All the best with your next and final attempt :)

  4. your last sentence:
    Any tips/suggestions to boost my score in my upcoming GMAT ARE welcome, not IS welcome!

    Focus on the basics such as these.

  5. Good one Sid! I noticed it the moment I posted! Was waiting for someone to respond :)

  6. Kruthika...I am no GMAT expert (scored an OK 710)..but as someone already posted...OG will not be enough...If possible, take the Kaplan tests. Don't worry if you get them wrong as the tests are is more important you understand why you were wrong. 1000SCs is awesome...IMO.

    And one more tip...this time, leave your place 3 hours in advance :-)
    All the best!


    These may be helpful.

  8. Every one should do the good preparation for the competitive exams so that they can score good marks.

  9. Try online resources such as - not enough students focus on how important it is to do practice problems and testing on the computer to simulate test day. I scored a 760 and much of my comfort level on test day was due to being used to how to take the test within the time constraints.

    Manhattan GMAT number properties book is great and Kaplan 800 is filled with difficult questions to propel you into top scoring range.

    MOST IMPORTANT: during practice tests, mark all questions you find questionable and force yourself to review not only problems you got wrong but all problems you were unsure on. This will make sure you're not just getting lucky in practice.

  10. Great post. I do know there is hesitation about getting insurance. I am a good and careful driver but I still have car insurance.

  11. hey - you should def get the manhattan gmat tests access. practice is they key to the GMAT, and those tests are really very good.

  12. Hei - where did you end up on the 31/10 exam?

  13. This is really great. Keep it up the good going. Really very great blog this has given me all the information that i needed, good for visiting daily it will increase our knowledge. Best luck for future.