GMAT Prep: Practice Test Number 2

by Megan Taylor on March 16, 2012

GMAT Countdown: 1 day, 3.5 hours.

Last night, according to my plan, I took a second computerized GMAT practice test.

How I did

I’d say it went fairly well. I can definitely tell that my math review has paid off, which is nice.

Analytic Writing Assessment

The Issue Analysis Essay was a little harder than I expected. They can’t score the essays, since the actual GMAT essays are sent off for scoring, but they do show you an essay that is well-reasoned and hits all of the salient points, so you can compare your essay to it. Despite the essay feeling hard, I ended up hitting most of the points of critique that the practice test highlighted as relevant, which means I probably would have scored decently well on the essay.

The Argument Analysis Essay prompt was really short, which I wasn’t expecting, but I think I did okay with my essay. I chose to agree with the argument, with qualifications, which the GMAT prep book said would boost my score. The example essay the practice test provided for me to compare my essay to was from someone who opted to disagree with the argument, so my essay wasn’t really comparable. My essay was at least as well-written, and almost as well organized, so I’m hoping that means I’ll do okay on the essays for the actual GMAT.

We’ll see what happens tonight when I take the third practice test.

Quantitative Section

Scaled Score: 36
Number correct: 19 (out of 33)
Percent correct: 51%
Percentile: 48.2%

Ugh.

This section went better than I was hoping, but it was still hard, and I still missed almost half of the questions. I didn’t finish everything (I ran out of time at question 33 of 37), which means I need to better manage my time. I will have 75 minutes to complete the 37 questions, which is around 2 minutes per question. A better way for me to think about it, I’ve found is that I need to complete 7 questions every 15 minutes (give or take). It’s not a perfect measure, but it gives me something use to gauge my progress, since there’s a countdown-clock embedded in the test software.

I got some things right that I know I would have missed two weeks ago (before I started my review), and I only missed a few questions due to stupid math errors, which is good. Hopefully I’ll be able to do better tonight after a bit of math review.

Verbal Section

Scaled Score: 31
Number correct: 25 out of 47
Percent correct: 61%
Percentile: 64.0%

This section was not walk-in-the-park easy, but it wasn’t frustratingly hard like the math section. I’ve always been pretty good at Verbal/English stuff, and correcting sentences for readability I can do in my sleep. I’m a little less good at picking out the flaws in arguments, which is likely where I missed some points. I’ll take 64th percentile. I figure there are a lot of freaking smart people taking this test.

My biggest concern on the day of the event? That I’ll get into trouble for muttering out loud while I’m doing the Verbal Section. It helps me think, but I don’t know if my fellow test-takers will appreciate it. Hopefully the sound dampening dividers between stations will mitigate any muttering I end up doing.

My Score

According to the Practice Test software, I scored a 570. That’s 50 points better than my first practice test (with no studying or prep), and 10 points better than the “average” GMAT scores of people accepted to UC Denver.

A 570 puts me in the 61st percentile, which is pretty decent.

It’s not the best score ever, but I’ll take it.

What’s Next?

Tonight I try again. There’s another Practice Test on the Peterson’s website and I’ll take it and see how I do. Stay tuned.

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