June 28, 2013

GMAT Horror Story: Test auditors cancel my 700+ score

Mehul Tolia, MBA '14
Sometimes you have this love – hate relationship with certain people for me it was with GMAT. Yes! A relationship because it lasted for about a year and a half.

It all began in the summer of 2010 (you know how horrific the story is going to be by the way it begins). Fresh from my undergrad, I attempted the GMAT for the first time. It took me about 2 months to prepare, but at the end of it I just wanted to get it done. On the day of the test I was nervous but felt well prepared. I finished the test in time and got the result. Though the score was good but not up to my expectation. Nevertheless I left it at that and took up a job.

A year into the job I took a month off. I wanted to better my previous GMAT score. I worked hard again and cracked it. I was able to go past the 700 mark. I was simply ecstatic. Seemed like all the hard work and the gamble of taking it again had paid off. The score was balanced and competitive enough. I went back to my job knowing that I was definitely done with the first part of the MBA application i.e. the GMAT.

But (yes there is always a ‘but’) nothing goes as planned. About three weeks after I took my test tragedy struck. Early in the morning I was informed that my GMAT score had been cancelled. Apparently, the GMAT audit members had found some discrepancy with the particular test center and hence were cancelling all test scores for the previous 3 months. I was shocked, angry and frustrated at the same time. My only compensation was I could book another GMAT test date for free. I took some time to evaluate the situation as even if I wanted to retake the GMAT, but I couldn’t afford to take a long break again.

Finally I decided to give it another shot. Thankfully there was a long festive break coming up, hence I was able to get 2 weeks off. When I began preparing this time, I didn't really know where to begin as I had just finished all the necessary material a month back. I decided that this was my last time; no matter what the score would be I would never retake the GMAT. And came the fateful test date when I went to take the GMAT for the third and final time. Though I ended up getting a better score then my first attempt it was still lower than my second score. I then began focusing on the MBA applications. After the interview the longest wait was for the decision, and when I heard back from Weatherhead I was thrilled. I now realize, GMAT though important, it is just one part of your profile. In the end, the schools thankfully looked at the overall picture.

The past one year has been a great learning experience both inside and outside the school. The small class size has provided me an opportunity to work with people from diverse cultural and professional backgrounds. I am looking forward to the second year at this school. As cliché as it may sound "all's well that ends well".

Mehul Tolia, MBA '14

1 comment:

  1. I think that the GMAT is very important because a good score can get you into a good business program like this. I think getting a jump on the GMAT as soon as possible is something that everyone should consider

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