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I recently gave my GMAT. Just wanted to share my experience with you.

Well my GMAT experience is just like any one else's. I gave GMAT on 8th of Sep'2006 and scored pretty decent (when compared to my starting scores). I thought of giving GMAT about 5 months back.

Did some basic research like what is the syllabus, what are the sections etc and quickly identified two things. First that with 5 years of experience, I need to score in and around 700 to get into a good B- school. Secondly, that I can’t do it alone. I need some direction as to how should I go about it.  

I got Kalyan's reference from a forum in am not sure of the site). I liked his small batch approach. Had a talk with 1-2 of his previous students and then decided to start with the classes.  I started with the morning 6:30-8:30 daily batch. In my diagnostic test I scored 580. That was depressing because 700 seemed far. In the batch of 4, we started with SC, CR and then onto Math and finally RC. I strictly followed Kalyan's deadlines, instructions and timetable. I was daily spending 3 hrs doing the 11th OG (trust me don't even think of any other book. OG is more than enough). In the beginning it was really difficult. All my answers were wrong :(. But slowly I started understanding what was required. I began to identify the pattern and understood what the question is asking for.

I started getting SC's correct that gave me confidence. I gave my second test. That was a disaster. I scored 530. Even lower than the first time. Boy was I shattered. I still continued working with the 11th OG and the next time I gave test I scored 650.
By this time we had virtually covered everything in class. Still 700 was at a teasing distance. By this time my D-Day (GMAT exam date) was only 2 weeks off and I had virtually completed my 11th OG. Kalyan told me to start working on 10th OG. Also he gave the presentation with questions, which I started doing with time restrictions. This exercise gave me a very good practice to keep track of time. I was basically able to manage time with my questions. Here I gave another test. Kalyan told me that this time skip those questions that you feel will take longer.  Also that the first two RC's are the score boosters. If you can get them correct your verbal score will automatically increase. I did exactly that. I skipped around 3-4 math questions and 3-4 SC and CR.  Score - 700 (Math - 47 and Verbal - 36). Now that made me really happy. Beyond this point I decided that I don't need to improve on anything else just that I need to keep in touch with everything. So 2 more tests and try completing 10th OG as much as possible. I did just that. I completed SC. CR completely. RC around 65%. Math – 90.  After completing everything I gave another test just before the d-day I scored 690.

On the D-day.

Went to the center with only one thought. Just give your best shot and don't worry about score. Specially don't let the mistakes prey on your mind. The AWA writing was straight forward and with the template in place that was a piece of cake. Then started the Math. I skipped the first question itself. Rest went pretty well. Completed math with 1.2 minutes remaining. Skipped around 2-3 questions there. Took a break. Thought to myself, math was pretty decent. Now in verbal just keep your cool and get the first two RC's right.

Started well with verbal. With SC I kept it very simple. Just reading the question once will tell you whether you have identified the rule it’s testing. If you could identify that spend time on it otherwise skip it. Gave special attention to my RC's. I did spend a few seconds more on every RC question, just to be sure. Got 2 long passages first. Third one was a short passage. I was expecting the fourth one to be short as well. But that was a long passage. That took me by surprise, but I had sufficient time left so I did that easily. In the end I completed verbal section with 13 minutes remaining.

My Final score - 710, (Math - 44, Verbal - 42). I know. Should have scored better in math.

My advices to all the test takers- Just follow Kalyan's rules religiously and only work with OG's. That's more than sufficient for getting a good score.

Best of luck guys... Happy GMATing :)


Nakul Agarwal

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