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GMAT Student Post: From the Military to Business School

Want to read about a Magoosh student’s experience with the exam? Today, we’re hearing from Josh; he has some great tips for us all! 🙂 

About me: My name is Josh, I am originally from Kentucky and went to a state school there and majored in Finance. I am currently in the military and plan to apply to MBA programs this fall for the Fall 2015 intake. I hope to get a corporate finance position after completing my MBA.

My biggest challenge on the exam: For me, both sentence correction and reading comprehension were very difficult topics. The Magoosh videos for sentence correction were very helpful in improving my score. The video formats were much easier to follow (especially for someone who also struggles with reading comprehension). Also, I studied the list of idioms provided by Magoosh extensively along with the videos explaining common idioms (less vs fewer). When evaluating sentence correction problems, I first focused on verb conjugation, then parallelism, then idioms. This helped improve my accuracy in practice problems from about 60% to about 85-90%.

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For reading comprehension, I tried a couple different note taking and reading techniques. I was most successful when taking more notes. It was more of an upfront investment of time, but I found that I understood the passage much better and rarely needed to refer back to my notes or the passage to answer the questions.

What I would do differently: The only thing I would possibly change in my studies would be to spend a little more time studying verbal topics. I have always been better at quant and find it more fun so it’s much easier for me to study quant. However, I am happy with my verbal score, even though I hoped it would be a little higher.

Tips for other students: My strategy was to first review the basic quant and verbal topics. Then, I did a large amount of practice problems and tried to understand why each answer was right, especially for questions I got wrong. I then reviewed the quant and verbal topics in more detail and did many, many practice problems to put the theory into practice. By reviewing the errors I made I was able to focus my studying on the problems that I had consistently missed.

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