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How to review GMAT

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How I prepare for the GMAT test?
Yang Shijia Sam
15 Nov 2004
I have planned to pursue a higher degree abroad since the first year of my university life. Hence, I seize any opportunities to improve my English in my daily life. Before taking the GMAT test, I checked my interested programmes first and made sure that those programmes accept the test score. After doing so, I began my journey in fighting against GMAT. Firstly, I set a schedule and followed it strictly. I noticed that the deadline of the application in many US universities is probably in the mid or end of December, so I decided to take the test in September or October. Therefore, I started preparation in July and planned to set aside three months for review.
Then, I took the action step by step according to my schedule. By analyzing the mistakes I made, I acknowledged my weaknesses and strengths in terms of the sections tested in GMAT. I was lack of a large vocabulary to figure out the main idea of the passage and hence the whole article. Moreover, the meaning of many scientific terms in the reading comprehension part and reasoning part was quite difficult to catch. Unfortunately, those scientific terms are especially common in a GMAT reading passage. Thus, I started my review by incrementing my vocabulary. I spent almost one month during the semester in memorizing new words. I set a goal of mastering 50 more words everyday. After I felt that I could understand those long sentences and elusive passages easily, I turned to my second stage, namely practicing real questions in the most useful book, "Official Guide for GMAT Review".
The second stage can be regarded as the toughest thing in my preparation period. However, thanks to the summer vocation, I had enough time to go through the exercises without any disturbances. Every morning I tried to review some words I had memorized before. And then, I practiced 30 to 50 questions of sentence correction, 5 passages, and 30 reasoning questions. It might not seem to be a heavy workload; however, through the practice, I found that it is not the quantity of your preparation count but the quality. Therefore, I summarized my mistakes everyday and wrote down the most common mistakes I always made. After completing the second stage, I was able to reach a high level of correct rate. Since my test date was approaching, I started my mock test exercises in the last 20 days. I found that though there are various kinds of mock test software available in the market, the most valuable and helpful one should be the POWERPREP issued by ETS, which is free for download from its official website. With detailed explanation of each choices and real test environment simulation provided by this software, I was able to get well familiar with the test in advance and managed the time more efficiently during the test. Time management is rather a crucial factor in GMAT test. Since the test only offers you an extremely limited duration, you cannot think over one question too long. Thus, we have to develop a sensitive awareness of time controlling. In short, I don't think a high score in GMAT requires many unreachable criteria. If you plan your review schedule wisely, if you are well prepared, and if you can control your time efficiently, it is also an easy job to reach a satisfying score.
At the end of my writing, I would like to thank Dr. Ho again for giving me so many reference books about GMAT. Without these books, I can hardly get such a high score.
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