By betsy On Wednesday, November 18 th, 2009 · no Comments · In

In recent weeks, I’ve heard from disappointed GMAT test takers that they scored well on the practice tests, but bombed out during the actual test.  That usually means they have to study all over again, retake the exam, and spend time worrying about data sufficiency when they could be refining their essays or making sure their recommenders are in line.

An admissions officer gave me this GMAT tip: do your practice exams in a really noisy place.  The test center has a lot of distractions, and it is different from your cozy home.  A student the admissions officer knows knows tested well at home but not as well in the test center. The student  was a frequent flyer, so each time he had to travel, he went to the airport several hours early and practiced in the boarding lounge.

He nailed the GMAT.

The test center can be noisy and annoying. It’s just one of the distractions you need to deal with.

Here’s another case — one student, who is a decent writer, obsessed about mistakes she may have made on her AWA while she was doing the quant section.  An “A” student in calculus, she was disappointed by her first quant results, but ended up getting a 5.5 on the AWA.  Her worries definitely led her astray.

If you have test anxiety, consider learning some techniques.  Dr. Ben Bernstein, a performance coach, has written a book called <i>The Workbook for Test Success.</i>. Look for it on Amazon Workbook for Test Success. Or his own website http://workbookfortestsuccess.com.

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