Ask Kate: How Should I prepare for my Next GMAT Exam Retake?

Knowing How To Prepare For The GMAT Is Crucial.



Hi Kate,

Please let me know how I must prepare for my 3rd shot at GMAT?
(Yes, I’ve already decided to retake).

I’m an Indian IT guy targeting US top 20 MBA programs. So my target score is 730+.
Total Work Experience: 7 years (at the time of application)

I have couple of months to prepare – planning to apply in Round 1 (around Sept 2015).

On my 4 GMATPrep practice CATS I got above 720.

But here is my real GMAT performance:

2nd GMAT – 690 (Q 49, V 35, IR 7, AWA 6)
1st GMAT – 680 (Q 47, V 37, IR 6, AWA 4.5)

I have improved in all the sections, except verbal which dropped a couple points – quite a shocker as Verbal was my forte.

Now I’m thinking if I can put more effort on Quant and push it to 50/51 and pull Verbal up to 39/40 I might end up in the 720-740 range.

Please advise, if my strategy looks good.


RetakeHi Kishore,
I’m not sure why you believe Verbal is your forte. The scaled score for verbal is not even close to your scaled score for quant. Yes, your percentile is higher, but that is relative to other people who take this exam.

Percentile – relative to the other people taking the test
Scaled Score – your performance on the test, your grade

Only moving verbal will be worth your time. If verbal makes a jump, your overall score will as well. You do not need to do anything other than maintain in quant.

There are only 2 currently published GMATprep CATs so you may be mixing old paper tests and CATs or private vendor CATs or your take and retake of the same GMATprep CATs. If you have access to super old CDs of GMATprep CATs, this still applies – your score is artificially high because you’ve seen a large portion of the problems.

Focus on verbal. 80% of your time.

Best wishes!


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