Studying for the GMAT
I’ve spent the last couple weeks starting to prep for the GMAT. I mentioned in my previous post I had started reading the “Open Book” available at GMATClub, but it was only really meant as a formula reference so using it to try and review was not very beneficial. I figured I needed to get some real review material so I loaded up on some books off of Amazon.
Here is a list of the books I got:
1) Manhattan GMAT (MGMAT) 8 Strategy Guides
2) Official Guide for GMAT Review 12 (OG12)
3) Official Guide for GMAT Review 10 (OG10)
4) Official Guide for GMAT Quantitative Review 2nd Edition
5) Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review 2nd Edition
The first book is a series of 8 review guides and the other 4 books primarily provide practice questions (with answers) from real GMAT tests. I’ve made it through the first 3 books in the 8 series MGMAT and I’ve found the guide to be extremely helpful. I would say it is a must have for anyone planning on taking the GMAT. So far my studying strategy has been to read and take notes, make flashcards for things that need to be memorized and take the end of chapter tests. After I finish making it through all the guides I plan on using the OG questions and the GMATClub Forum tests as practice. The plan is to take the practice tests and keep an error log to evaluate what type of questions I’m getting wrong and why I’m getting them wrong so I can concentrate on improving areas I’m weak in.
I’ve also started attending a local Toastmasters chapter. While I don’t expect it to help me much with getting into a MBA program (unless I take a leadership role), I expect it will help me develop as a public speaker which should be a very useful skill.
Lastly I’ve also began volunteering at a local foodbank (Feeding America) on the weekends. I hope to start taking more of a leadership role there to help develop my leadership abilities which is currently the main weakness in my profile. My current job’s career development path is rather slow (at least 4-5+ years before they even think of letting you start to manage small projects) which is why I’m focusing on demonstrating my leadership abilities outside of work (although I plan to keep my eyes open for any opportunities).
It is also worth mentioning I’ve changed my sleep schedule in order to fit in time for the GMAT. I usually sleep about 8 hours a day, but I’ve noticed in the past I also feel refreshed if I get 6 hours of sleep (although I’m more likely to be tired if I don’t hit that time exactly). I’ve started sleeping 6 hours a day which adds 2 hours to my day, ensuring I have time to study every day. So far it has been 2 weeks since I’ve implemented this and the only side effect has been being a little more tired throughout the day, but it hasn’t been that bad.