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GMAT - Check... Applying to Biz School

By smithdm3 - Posted on 19 March 2009

I wrote my GMAT today. You see, I'm planning on going back to school in the fall to do my MBA. I'd like to do it part-time, but am applying for full-time admission just in case the job goes completely south, I can't find something else and therefor find myself 'underemployed'.

I spent a few days in the last week or so studying for the test. I'd bought a little book to help me become comfortable with the format, and of course downloaded the "GMATPrep" software. The book was okay, it was a pretty easy read and had some sample questions and two practice exams. The software is pretty much the exact format as the real computer-based adaptive test with some practice questions and two practice exams. The software was pretty helpful, coming pretty close to modeling the real thing.

The test has 3 sections, Analytical Writing Assessment (essays), Quantitative and Verbal. The essay section involves writing two short essays, an analysis of an argument and an analysis of an issue. For each essay you have 30 minutes of time. After the first hour you can take a break, though I didn't, I was just eager to get through it all. The marks for this aren't available until 20 days after the test as the writing is marked both by software and by a human.

The second section, Quantitative, involves problem solving (math) and data sufficiency (do you have enough data to provide an answer) questions. I thought this would be my strong suit (and it was in my practice - though I hate the data sufficiency ones) but I took too much time (75 minutes provided for 37 questions) at the beginning and had to rush/guess at the end. I ended up with a 'scaled score' of 42 which was in the 63rd percentile (not bad, but I thought this was going to be where I made up ground).

I again skipped the break and moved onto the final section, Verbal, which includes three types of questions including Critical Reasoning, Sentence Correction (grammar) and Reading Comprehension. I didn't do so well in my Sentence Correction practice questions in preparation, but things seemed to go well today. I just plowed on through and had the right amount of time. In the end I ended up with a 'scaled score' of 46 for this section which is good enough to rank in the 99th percentile. Woah... that was unexpected, I guess the practice worked out for me.

In the end I ended up with a Total score (the aggregate of the last two 'instantly scored' sections) of 720 which appears to be a pretty good score (95th percentile) so I'm pretty happy with how it all went. (I still think I could have done better on the quantitative section, but oh well.)

Now, onto sending in some applications...

UPDATE: I received my final marks back (already) in 6 days, way under the 20 suggested. My final marks for the Total, Verbal and Quantitative sections were as indicated, and I received a 5.5 which is 80th percentile for the Analytical Writing Assessment (essays).

Great job honey...........

Good luck with your applications! Where do you think you will be applying?

Well, I'd like to stick around here, and I had to go away I'd probably want to get things done as quickly as possible, so I've chosen to apply at Ottawa U, Carleton and McMaster (8 months) though I'm still considering Queen's (at least the program that I could do from Ottawa). My GMAT mark, undergraduate grades and work experience are such that I can likely go almost anywhere... just have to stay in the budget and would like to stay close to my wife :)

Nice work Dave! Of course, I would expect nothing less from you.

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