Today’s guest post comes from Abhyudaya Rana, who scored 710 on his second GMAT attempt with the help of Prep4GMAT app as well as other resources.
Hello guys! Like everyone else, I have my own GMAT story. Before I embark on that journey, let me brief you about my background.
I graduated from from Bits Pilani (Tolani, Pune Campus) with a BS in Nautical Technology. I have 3+ years of work experience as a merchant navy officer. I have handled crude oil tankers of more than 100,000 metric tons deadweight, carrying millions of barrels of crude oil. I was/am perfectly happy with my job as it gave me opportunities to earn A LOT more than friends of my age and explore various foreign lands.
However, I realized this is the best age in which I can grow further as a person and acquire further education without the burden of a spouse. I came in contact with a friend who had recently given GMAT exam and he told me about his experience. I always had an interest in logistics/operations. I was in the core operations of ships, but we were so-called pawns rather in the big supply chain. I wanted to broaden my horizons and wanted to shoulder more responsibility.
Come July 2013, I decided to give the GMAT a shot. I had a solid Quant background and decent English knowledge. So I decided to give it a go in August. I didn’t realize the blunder I was making! I studied hurriedly through the meager 20-25 days I had and Verbal section of GMAT really shook me. All the answers seemed correct and I scored around 600 in the mock test. Come the big day, I scored a 620, far lower than I had hoped.
I was dejected, because I felt the test went FANTASTIC! Little did I know the test is so adaptive that you feel comfortable in the test and feel as though you’re nailing it. A few friends told me a 620 with 25 days of studying was not bad, and I said that I would take it again.
As much as I loved shipping, the desire to broaden my horizons was still immense. I decided to give the GMAT another go in April 2014. As far as study materials are concerned, here are my recommendations:
Manhattan: 670, 710, 710, 710, 710, 740
GMAT Prep: 690, 710, 720, 730.
As you can see the mock tests were close to my original score. Giving these tests gave me a lot of confidence and belief. A word of advice- start the mock tests when you feel you are 80% prepared.
I did not sleep particularly well; slept just for just 4 hours from 3 am to 7 am, more out of excitement than anxiety. I was really up for it! The test started at 9 am. I had prepared for just 20 minutes for AWA because I was confident I knew I could write well. AWA went well.
I was worse at IR. I had been scoring 3-4 out of 8 in all the mock tests, so I had gone ill-prepared for that. Little did I know that with focused answering I was going to score a perfect 8 in it.
The first Quant question really threw me off (perhaps due to a sluggish mind due to lack of sleep) and I spent 5 minutes solving it. I rushed through the remaining Quant section and finished 8 minutes in advance.
Verbal went well, but again my sluggish mind wasn’t letting me think very clearly in the Critical Reading section.
When I was asked whether I wanted the unofficial score, I was tense as I felt I had not done enough to cross the 700 barrier. I clicked “submit.”
IR8 Q50 V36 710 (92%ile) popped up on the screen, and I was the most relieved man in the world. I punched the air in jubilation and was appropriately reprimanded by the test proctor. I came out of the testing center, met my anxiously waiting friends and partied all night.
It was a battle won for me, a sweet revenge taken from the GMAT.
Now I am in midst of applications to schools and realize that GMAT was just half the battle done. With the essays and SOPs, a lot of work is still to be done. So I will advise people reading this to get done with your GMAT as soon as possible and focus on applications more as it’s a time-consuming process.
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