This page of our website is a treasure for those who need to learn the do’s of academic and career planning. I am going to share with you a tip and some information every week to help you work smart to get to your dream school! Remember just ‘’wanting’’ to be at Harvard never got anyone there!!!!
Tip 1 The most common mistake a person commits in the process of applying for admission to a program is not drawing up a time line!!! I have encountered so many very bright and promising candidates who had everything it takes to get into a good school but who just did not have the calendar in place. The whole process of actually reaching a school for a graduate program requires about 6 months, by modest estimates!!!! For the high school students, it is a 12 month gruel!! As soon as you have decided that you want to pursue your next level of academics from a school in the US, UK, Europe, or even Canada or Singapore, study the entry level requirements of each school, draw up a list of the deadlines and get ready to make the tire hit the road!!!! In case you are looking for professional help for turning your dreams into a reality, look carefully. Meet people who have been through the drill or who are planning to do so, explore all the service providers available in your city, take trial sessions, hold discussions with counsellor and then decide who is going to be your partner in this long, at times excruciating, but very rewarding career journey. Once you have exercised your option, sit down and plan the effort ahead…. day by day, month by month. Don’t forget there is method even in madness. Put a method into your efforts and you will be where you dream of being. Chances are that if you find the right training platform and a savvy academic consultant, your life is made.
Getting started with GMAT Preparation
This week’s tips are about getting started with GMAT preparation and about what the preparation must include. Let me start by admitting that the GMAT is not the most student friendly test! In fact there are as many myths and fancy stories about it as there are books and websites claiming to help you get the magical score!! The truth is keep clear of the quacks and the clutter and organize yourself a sharp, relevant and challenging platter of resource materials to study from. If you have zeroed down on a training institute to attend classes at, good. I am sure you made the pick judiciously. Be sure to be regular with the classes and to derive the maximum you can from the facilities offered. Most training institutes offer material but never confine yourself to just one source of questions. Consult with the trainers, interact with other students, widen your horizons and discover what is worth working on. Time is dear so do not waste it on practice material and practice tests that either stray from the GMAT questions or lead you up a dark lane and leave you feeling cheated when you do the real test! Once you are through with the training classes you should be well initiated into the peculiarities of the GMAT and I advise you should draw out a weekly or daily study routine that allows you to practice every type of verbal and math question regularly. Keep a track of this performance and meet up with your trainer (if possible!) and solve your problems as you go along so that the problems do not accumulate and bog you down. TIP 1 Practicing questions of different difficulty levels in clusters by topic is a smart study method because it helps you identify where you falter. Most often students are unable to locate the Achilles’ heal because the preparation methodology is not deconstructive and does not break the test up into its components. I can assure you that if you sift your skills in the early stages of preparation and work on deconstructing the test down to its minutest component, you will master the tricks the GMAT test always has up its sleeve! TIP 2 I also suggest you find a group to work in. And if that is not easy to find, take the initiative and make a study group!!!! Yes, different minds work differently but they end up working more productively. We each have some skill or skills and lack some. Working with others preparing for the test and aspiring for pretty much the same as you is a brilliant way to learn GMAT skills and to widen you options for post the test.
Last but not least, do at least 5 to 7 (if possible more!!!) full length GMAT Practice Tests before the D-Day!! I know of brave hearts whose final test is their first encounter with the real thing! Ouch! That’s foolhardy not brave!!! Do not commit this error no matter how smart you are and how great your trainers have been making you feel.
More next week!!!
P.S. I hope you are reading Option Institute’s Blog and Counsellor’s Desk regularly. Remember the more you know about the GMAT test, the GMAT practice tests and the application process, the less likely you are to make a mess of navigating your way to a good course.