Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Taking your GMAT preparation to the next level.

Why does one need to take it to the next level? Whats wrong with the current level? Well the answer is simple - if you wanna score high you need to prepare harder with some advanced tools/materials. This post is solely for that purpose. I would like to give my perspective on some of the advanced GMAT preparation materials available to people looking to score higher.

Just like preparing for an Olympics 100m race, when preparing in your backyard gym mostly wouldn't yield you a medal let alone gold, preparing to crack the 90 percentile range on a GMAT requires some advanced materials. I personally feel from my experience and from the experience of fellow test takers that the GMAT is actually getting harder or atleast is harder than what is was 5 years back. I have come across some prep materials which contain such tough practice questions which would take off the shock when you take the GMAT after chewing the Official guides several times.

The GMAT Club tests - These are practice tests prepared by the founders of the GMATClub forum. They are highly regarded for their really tough Quant test. Their set contains 25 quant tests and 6 verbal test. Although i haven't tried the verbal tests yet, their quant tests are pretty impressive. They have detailed answer explanations and their blog contains organized links for the dicussion of each question. I felt the price to be reasonable at $79.99 for the entire set or $12.50 for ea if i'm not wrong. Learn more here - http://gmatclub.com/blog/gmat-tests/

EZ Solutions advanced Math Workbook - This book is prepared by a company called EZ Solutions. This is a work book so dont expect review material here. Although they have a whole line up of topic specific review books. They have a very extensive list of questions and they provide detailed (very detailed) answer explanations. Their question structure is not GMAT-like (with 5 answer choices) but its like a high school exam type of structure only with more tricky questions. Overall i can say that it has really helped me get better. And @ $19.99 you can't go wrong with this. http://www.amazon.com/EZ-Solutions-Practice-Advanced-Workbook/dp/1605621587/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1243953643&sr=8-2

Manhattan GMAT challenge series - These are also a very good tool to boost your Quant preparation. They contain 250 questions with a difficulty level of 700+. They are honestly the most difficult of the lot. $29.99 for one year access.

Manhattan GMAT Practice test - These are my favourite practice CATs after GMATPrep. Their questions are difficult and more challenging than GMAT and their post exam analysis is excellent. Each question is categorized according to the topic that was tested with the difficulty level and also provide a free diagnosis. 6 tests for $39.99 (one year access). Hint: if you planning to buy any of their strategy guides then dont buy the test set separately. They come for free!!

Kaplan 800 - This book is supposed to be for the Mission 800 student (did the name give it away!!). But i didn't think the quant part was really 800 level. But the verbal questions tend to be more difficult. I just bought this book when i was going thro' a book buying spree!!!

Also want some guidence for tough verbal questions, here is some advice from Jeff Sachmann of GMAT Hacks - http://www.gmathacks.com/reading-comprehension/what-makes-tough-verbal-questions-tough.html

Hope that helped somebody on their way to cracking the gmat!!

Good luck!!

P.S. I would like to thank all my readers all over the world for their interest in my blog. I never expected 16 readers to subscribe to my blog the very next day after i add the subscription service. Thanks!!!


  1. HARI,

    Your exercise to share your learning curve, stands as an example for us to look in how to go about our preparations. That would explain the subscribers. keep up the informative work.

  2. Chambdu, u rock!! :)

  3. Prasanna,

    Thank you for those kind words. I just try to do the best i can. Its reader like you and your inspiration that has kept me going!!

    Be well

  4. Hi Hari,

    The image that you have used is a copyrighted image. :) The content and the images on the blog are copyrighted under creative commons. I would have appreciated had you mentioned the image source.

  5. Thanks a lot Dagny for letting me know about it. I'll put in the source right away!!!

    Appreciate your input!!


  6. I didn't want you to remove the image. The image looked good with your post. Just wanted you to mention the source. Since you are in the early stages of establishing your blog, I thought I'd mention this. It would save you from a lot of complications in future. You are free to use any image you like on my blog.

    Sorry if I sounded rude. :(

  7. hey hari... good to keep reading ur material. uv been making good progress.

    i took a gmatprep tonight. 720 (Q49, V38) got into some serious time trouble in both q and v. had to rush thru 2 qns in q and 4 in v. guess what im gonna be practicing this weekend ;)

    my gmats up in 4 weeks. good luck with urs too. do stop by my blog when u get time.


  8. @ Dagny, No absolutely not. Dont apologize. I actually couldn't find the source so i thought it better to take it off!! And I really appreciate your comments. People like you are the pillars of this blog!!!

    Thanks and pls do keep you valuable suggestions coming!!!

  9. @ Rocky,

    720 is great!!! I think with a little push you are going to end up with a stellar score. Good luck with your practice and prep.
    My G-day is coming in less than 15 days now!!! Pretty excited and nervous!!!

  10. Can't think of saying anything now, except all the best. You are working hard enough. -Mohan

  11. I agree, EZ GMAT books are awesome and helped me a great deal by refreshing my rusty math skills. The OG also was a great investment.

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