Ace Sentence Correction on the GMAT Exam
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 minimum of two concepts. Once you identify which they are, you are able to look for the specifics you need. For example, if the sentence includes a comparison, you know to look for the things being compared to ensure they are logical and like.
Don’t Make a Snap Judgment
It isn’t uncommon for exam takers to read answer A or B and feel sure they’re found the answer. Because of the time constraints of the GMAT, it’s tempting to take that gut feeling and run with it. In reality, this approach will likely harm your score. While speed is valuable, accuracy is far more important. For this reason, be sure you read all five potential answers before deciding which to choose.
Every Rule Has Exceptions
As tempting as it may be to automatically eliminate choices with ambiguous pronouns or “being,” remember that every rule has exceptions. This is another great reason to be sure you review every possible choice before making your selection. In a sense, there is a hierarchy to the grammatical rules on the GMAT. Once you have read all of the options, it should become clear that you have not eliminated the correct answer for an insignificant reason.
Know the Important Rules and General Principles
Although rules do have exceptions, there are still hard and fast rules to fall back on. For example, in almost every case, you can eliminate at least one answer for subject-verb agreement. That gets one option of your plate immediately. The correct answer is logical and conveys the correct meaning. Eliminate any answers that do not meet these criteria right away as well. Read the original sentence carefully and insert the different remaining options before determining your choice. Don’t forget to look carefully at the parts of the sentence that aren’t underlined. They give you great clues as well. Finally, it’s good to keep in mind that the GMAT favors shorter and simpler sentences.
Sentence correction is intimidating to many GMAT takers, especially non-native English speakers. But in reality, once you brush up on your grammar and the types of errors you might encounter, you have a high likelihood of success. As always, your GMAT prep will only be as good as your prep materials. Check out EMPOWERgmat for the best prep course on the internet, along with a 70-point guarantee.