EMPOWERgmat Blog

Articles with "Verbal"

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Over the years, one of the most common concerns that I’ve heard from GMATers is about their pacing – specifically, the fact that they have to rush through a number of questions at the end of a section just to finish on time. “How do I fix my pacing problem?” they ask (and you might be asking it too!).   First, you have to understand that a pacing problem doesn’t exist on its own – it’s the result of OTHER issues. In simple terms, something about how you handle the […]
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Many Test Takers tend to find the Quant section of the GMAT to be easier than the Verbal section. Quant is based on more ‘obvious’ rules and patterns and you can often pinpoint the correct answer without having to consider (and then eliminate) each of the other 4 incorrect answers first.   By default, many GMATers work through Verbal questions with the idea that they should eliminate the four incorrect answers… and the answer that remains will be the correct one. While you should often be able to eliminate a […]
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In the prior post, we discussed proper reading pace for when you deal with GMAT RC passages (as a reminder, that pace should be about 150 words per minute).  Unfortunately, simply knowing that fact won’t necessarily lead you to adjust your reading speed. So here are three practice prompts – taken from the OG12 – for you to practice on. Use a timer and make sure to note how long it took you to read each passage. The proper (goal) amount of reading time is listed beneath each prompt.   […]
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Many GMATers make the mistake of thinking that ‘skimming’ is the proper way to deal with Reading Comp passages. By its nature, skimming is often a desperate way of trying to quickly deal with a (frequently lengthy) passage. Unfortunately, it sacrifices all manner of comprehension and note-taking for speed. That is a TERRIBLE trade-off – and often causes serious problems for Test Takers as they practice RC during their studies. By extension, those same Test Takers often fail to perform at a really high level on RC on Test Day, […]
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1) A motorist averaged 40 miles per hour on his way to work. He averaged 70 miles per hour on his way home along the same route. Which of the following is the closest to his average speed for the round trip? A. 40 B. 51 C. 55 D. 59 E. 59.5 The answers to this question are 'spaced out' in such a way that you don't need to do much math at all to get to the correct answer. This prompt is a fairly common 'design' for […]
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Each of the three questions listed here can be solved algebraically. However, if you pay attention to the five answer choices in each question, then you can cut down on the amount of work that is needed and potentially save some time. Remember that the goal on Test Day is to be correct AND be efficient, so while a shortcut that saves 5-10 seconds might not seem like much, if you could find that type of shortcut on every question, then you would cut 3-7 minutes of work-time in each […]
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In a couple of prior posts in this thread, we’ve discussed how to taking advantage of the answer choices (by TESTing THE ANSWERS or by thinking about what the answers choices 'mean') can be a really fast and easy way to get to the correct answer in certain Quant questions. Beyond using the answers and doing the straight-forward arithmetic though, you will sometimes be given a HUGE ‘hint’ from the GMAT question writers – the answer choices themselves will be designed in such a way that you can avoid doing […]
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The GMAT is a remarkably consistent and predictable Exam, so improving your performance isn’t just about ‘fixing’ the things that you are doing ‘wrong’ – it’s also in developing the proper skills to improve on work that you can already do.   Consider the following question. For many “math thinkers”, the approach would be “system algebra” – write out the appropriate equations and then solve for whatever the question asks for. That approach will absolutely get you to the correct answer here – and I suggest that you try it. […]
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While each of these three prompts might look complex, you CAN get to the correct answer by defining the patterns involved. 1) How many positive integers, from 2 to 100, inclusive, are not divisible by odd integers greater than 1? In this prompt, we're asked to think about the numbers 2 to 100, inclusive. To start, there's NO way that the GMAT would ask us to truly think about each of these numbers individually, so there MUST be a pattern involved.  Now to the specifics: which of […]
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For each of these three prompts, you should attempt to ‘play around’ with the question to define the pattern(s) involved – using the same approach showcased in the prior post. An explanation for how to approach each prompt in such a way will be provided tomorrow.   1) How many positive integers, from 2 to 100, inclusive, are not divisible by odd integers greater than 1?   A. 5 B. 6 C. 8 D. 10 E. 50     2) There are 20 doors marked with numbers 1 to 20 […]
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  Since the GMAT is a standardized Test, all of the questions that you’ll face are designed around one or more patterns. Sometimes the patterns are obvious – such as math formulas or grammar rules. Sometimes the patterns are more subtle - such as number properties or causality arguments.   With the proper study materials and Study Plan, you can learn all of the necessary patterns and train to properly use them. However, sometimes the patterns are so rare that they’re not worth learning in advance and sometimes they are […]
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Whether you’re just beginning your studies or have been training for the GMAT for some time now, you likely have some idea of what your ‘goal score’ is. For many GMATers, the goal is 700+. That score is relatively rare territory though – only about 10% of Test Takers ever reach that level (and some of them actually hit that score repeatedly - in an attempt to score higher - so not as many Test Takers score 700+ each year as you might think). Obviously, the numbers become even more […]
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The verbal GMAT section may get less attention, but it is still important. If you study hard for the verbal section, you can greatly improve your overall GMAT score. You need to study with intent if you want to crush the verbal section of the GMAT. Why the Verbal Section Matters Many business school students put in over 100 hours to study for the GMAT. It's easy to focus more on the data and problem solving sections without seeing the value of the verbal portion. To understand why […]
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Sentence correction on the GMAT can be challenging. One reason is that many people are not skilled at writing in a grammatically sound way. Additionally, very few people talk in a grammatically sound way. Body language, colloquialism, and a dozen other factors help us to communicate clearly, if not grammatically. This leads many GMAT test takers to rely on what "sounds right" to solve the questions in the sentence correction portion of the GMAT. While this may work sometimes, it is not a sound strategy for those hoping to score […]
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GMAT,
The GMAT is essential for admission to many graduate management and business programs. It is a daunting test that strikes fear into the hearts of takers and has inspired the consumption of large quantities of coffee in countless late night study sessions. However, a question that is often asked is, "What is the GMAT really testing?" Here's a quick overview of what the GMAT entails and assesses. Analytical Writing As you probably expect its title, the Analytical Writing section focuses on analytical writing. In the context of the GMAT, […]
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You will face approximately a dozen critical reasoning questions on your GMAT exam. There is a wide variety of types of critical reasoning questions, but almost all of them require the same basic techniques. The goal of GMAT critical reasoning questions is to test your ability to evaluate an argument and its conclusions. This is a business skill that your career will frequently require. Here are four simple tips to improve your critical reasoning score. Remember How You Are Being Tested While critical reasoning questions do require some […]
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Exam-takers will struggle with different sections of the verbal portion of the GMAT. Critical thinking questions are focused on logic, sentence correction on grammar, and reading comprehension on understanding. Depending on your strengths, some of these questions will come more easily to you than others. Today we’re going to focus on GMAT reading comprehension. If this is an area you struggle, here are four ways you can improve your reading comprehension for the GMAT and improve your GMAT prep . Summarize The easiest way to comprehend something you […]
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About a third of the questions in the verbal section of the GMAT are sentence correction questions. These questions test your English skills and are known to stump many an exam-taker. While sentence correction can be tricky, it is also a section of the exam that has the potential to boost your score and time if you get it down correctly. Here are four ways to increase your speed and accuracy on sentence correction. Figure Out Which Concepts the Question Includes Every sentence correction problem will include a […]
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  Preparing for reading comprehension on the GMAT is crucial because it makes up roughly a third of the questions. The passages are about 200-350 words in length and have 3-4 attached questions each. These passages come from scholarly articles from textbooks, journals, periodicals, etc. You are not expected to have any prior knowledge of the subject; however, your reading comprehension skills must be on par. We’ll discuss some strategies to prepare for the GMAT reading comprehension section. Pace Yourself With any standardized test including the GMAT, […]
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During GMAT prep, many people often neglect the AWA (Analytical Writing Assessment) portion of the GMAT exam. However, the AWA is different from the rest of the exam because it requires test-takers to generate unique content rather than answer multiple choice questions. Looking at a blank page can be intimidating. Thankfully, by adding a little bit of writing to your GMAT prep, you can write an excellent essay and get the AWA score you’re hoping for. What Is the AWA Anyway? The AWA tests your ability to analyze […]
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Studying for the GMAT can be a challenging endeavor for many Test Takers. Arguably, one of the most common score goals for Test Takers (if not THE most common score goal) is 700+, but only about 10% of those same people can actually achieve that goal. One of the interesting aspects of scoring at that level though is that while you don’t have to be a ‘genius’, you do have to be able to figure out WHY you’re not getting questions correct... and then do specific work to fix those […]
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Recently, someone who is currently studying for the GMAT asked for my insights into why so many GMATers seem to experience a big drop in their Verbal Scaled Scores between their practice CATs and Test Day. The discussion was detailed and included some insightful follow-up questions. Below is the relevant content of that discussion.  Test Taker X: I wanted to ask you about the recent trend of very low verbal scores on the real exam. I have seen an increased number of topics on this - in which test […]
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By GMAT Club Verified Reviewer bgbeidas How I aced the GMAT (760 Q49 V46) Man have I been looking forward to writing this post and thereby signaling the end of my GMAT journey. Before I launch into the juicy deets (study materials, practice CAT scores, etc), I think it would be worthwhile to provide you all with some background info on me. Also, please pardon the woeful tennis pun in the title. Four months of maniacal studying really took its toll. Retired professional tennis player (less impressive […]
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Right now, we’re in the midst of GMAT ‘season’ - that period of time when most Test Takers are aiming at upcoming Round 1 or Round 2 application deadlines. As such, the larger number of people studying for the GMAT generates a higher rate of frequently asked questions about how best to study for the Exam. There are a variety of different GMAT study materials available, but a small percentage of Test Takers decide to use non-GMAT based study materials during their studies. As odd as it sounds, they believe […]
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When it comes to studying for the GMAT, there are LOTS of different resources for you to choose from. As such, assembling the perfect combination of study materials can be a tricky task. What materials should you start with? What’s the ‘best’ way to learn the basics? How can you be efficient so that a 3-month study plan doesn’t balloon into a 6–month to 12-month study plan? Advice can come from so many different sources that you might not be sure whose advice to follow. Clouding the issue even further […]
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