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14 days left - Need urgent help [#permalink] New post 26 Jun 2004, 14:05
Hi guys,
I am a regular browser ( and not so regular poster) of this forum.
I would appreciate if some guys can advise how to improve my verbal scores.

Heres my practice test scores over the past few months, in sequence

PP1 - 550 Q48 V27 took it in mid-april (done no prep @that point)
kaplan 1 - 540
kaplan 1 - 570 Q50 V26 retook the test
PR1 - 640
PP2 - 680 Q48 V33 on 6th june

Then i started OG and finished it a few days back. Now i am doing the ones i got wrong.
These are recent tests I took.

Kaplan 2 - 610 Q50 V30 ( last week)
Crack-gmat - 595 Q52 V13 ( got 6qs wrong in 1st 15qs in verbal, took it today.)

My verbal is getting into my way from getting a 700+ GMAT score.

I rarely get more than 26/41 questions correct in verbal. I have only 14 days left and I can spare 4-5 hours daily.

I have started the SC mega bank and have 10 LSAT tests with me.

I am kind of lost and don't know how to improve my verbal scores at this point. I have enough material for practice but it seems I need some help in my verbal strategy.

Guys please help........I am aiming for 720+...........at this verbal score there's no way I can get it.

I guess I need improvement in all 3 areas of verbal, I seem to have reached a plateau in my scores.......always getting around 24-26q's right out of 41.

I have been using Kaplan and PR books for verbal strategies.

- ash
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 [#permalink] New post 26 Jun 2004, 18:40
You gave very little information about how you actually prep. Practice tests are important, but dont take the scores too seriously.

If you can, consider postponing your test date by two weeks.

Lets start from basics

1 through 10. Study your errors and learn from them. :) Do this every day.
11. Master the Verbal Questions from the Official Guide - each one of them. Even the most simplest of problems.
12. Dont use the 885 set of SC's until you have learnt enough about Sentence Correction.
13. Use LSAT's only after you have a strategy to attack RC and CR. why? these are the toughest problems and you want to make sure that you are ready with some strategy.
14. To overcome this same exact problem that you are facing, I maintained a log of my errors. My guess (and i might be wrong) is that you reached a plateau because there is a consistent pattern in your mistakes. This is where the error log helps.

Dont get me wrong, how you do on test day is the most important thing, error log or not. In your final week , forget your kaplans, princetons and other things.. Only Study your error log, Study OG , take Powerprep again, Study and Master idoms and grammar rules. There should be no room for guesswork.

It is no fun to maintain an error log. Its takes a lot of patience and discipline. But if you want something special, you got to atleast try and do something special.

Your error log might be the ultimate prep tool. If you maintain the discipline of updating your error log frequently and if you read through your error log every single day ( and i mean, every single day) , you should definitely see an improvement.

There is no book or no software (yet) that can adapt to your needs. this error log helps you to do adapt to your needs every single day. you seem to be doing ok in Math, but dont let up. keep up that intensity in your MATH Prep.

for more information, i have posted a reply to dookie in this forum. please go through that.

Hope this helps.

Sincerely
Praet
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 [#permalink] New post 26 Jun 2004, 19:25
Hi Praet,
Thanks for the quick reply ! Here's some more info and some more questions :)

My problem is that I will not have much time to prepare for GMAT after the exam date ( @Noon - 10th July ). I have a new project starting "very soon" and I am sure that I am going to be burdened.

The good part is that I have 14 days where I can almost give undivided attention to GMAT. So this is all the time I really have. I have taken leave for the last week. I do not intend to take the GMAT again unless I get a really bad score. Indians have a really tough time with something like 650 and an average profile ( IT industry 3-4 yrs w/e, etc )

My 4-5 hrs estimation was wrong. I can easily put in 8 hours for these 14 days.

As for the error log. Here's what I have been doing. I make an answer sheet in my notepad and mark which q's I get wrong. The mistake I made was that I revisited the questions only after I had finished the whole OG. I hadn't learnt from my mistakes. I had only picked up most of the rules.
Right now I have only been redoing SC questions. I have marked the CR's which I got wrong too. I will be revisiting them too.

Another part where I feel I lack is knowledge of basic/formal grammar ( I have spoken english most of my life but never studied formal grammar before ). I have mostly studied PR and Kaplan strategies for SC and the material they have provided.
I was thinking of whether to spend some time on the TOEFL book I have. ( Time is a constraint here...as the grammar portion is quite big ) I also have Strunk and White and was wondering to go through that.

As for RC and CR I haven't been doing much reading practice ( sometimes I do read a few articles from the economist, but not too many)
My reading speed is not too great, at good speed it might reach 350. I realize that if it goes over 400 my comprehension falls rapidly. With average passages I do OK and its only the tough and long passages that leads to wrong answers. I summarize the paragraphs most of the time ( I create a roadmap), so I have made some improvement from before.

I will be going ahead with the same date, so keeping that in mind what would you suggest now ?

Today seeing the V13 in crack-gmat test I became a little desperate and worried. The low score was due to getting first 7/15 wrong. Total 26/41 ratio didnt do much to the V13.

I am thinking of redoing the whole SC portion of OG and the CR's which I got wrong.
For RC I need to get used to tough passages so I plan to take LSATs for that.

I will postpone 885SC till I finish OG again. LSAT CR's I can begin once I am thorough with OG.

Awaiting a reply :)

- thanks
ash.
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 [#permalink] New post 26 Jun 2004, 23:26
ashkg wrote:
Hi Praet,
Thanks for the quick reply ! Here's some more info and some more questions :)

My problem is that I will not have much time to prepare for GMAT after the exam date ( @Noon - 10th July ). I have a new project starting "very soon" and I am sure that I am going to be burdened.

The good part is that I have 14 days where I can almost give undivided attention to GMAT. So this is all the time I really have. I have taken leave for the last week. I do not intend to take the GMAT again unless I get a really bad score. Indians have a really tough time with something like 650 and an average profile ( IT industry 3-4 yrs w/e, etc )

My 4-5 hrs estimation was wrong. I can easily put in 8 hours for these 14 days.

As for the error log. Here's what I have been doing. I make an answer sheet in my notepad and mark which q's I get wrong. The mistake I made was that I revisited the questions only after I had finished the whole OG. I hadn't learnt from my mistakes. I had only picked up most of the rules.
Right now I have only been redoing SC questions. I have marked the CR's which I got wrong too. I will be revisiting them too.

Another part where I feel I lack is knowledge of basic/formal grammar ( I have spoken english most of my life but never studied formal grammar before ). I have mostly studied PR and Kaplan strategies for SC and the material they have provided.
I was thinking of whether to spend some time on the TOEFL book I have. ( Time is a constraint here...as the grammar portion is quite big ) I also have Strunk and White and was wondering to go through that.

As for RC and CR I haven't been doing much reading practice ( sometimes I do read a few articles from the economist, but not too many)
My reading speed is not too great, at good speed it might reach 350. I realize that if it goes over 400 my comprehension falls rapidly. With average passages I do OK and its only the tough and long passages that leads to wrong answers. I summarize the paragraphs most of the time ( I create a roadmap), so I have made some improvement from before.

I will be going ahead with the same date, so keeping that in mind what would you suggest now ?

Today seeing the V13 in crack-gmat test I became a little desperate and worried. The low score was due to getting first 7/15 wrong. Total 26/41 ratio didnt do much to the V13.

I am thinking of redoing the whole SC portion of OG and the CR's which I got wrong.
For RC I need to get used to tough passages so I plan to take LSATs for that.

I will postpone 885SC till I finish OG again. LSAT CR's I can begin once I am thorough with OG.

Awaiting a reply :)

- thanks
ash.


ashkg, you can use the following strategy: do only SC's, don't mix it up with RCs or CRs. Maintain error log, where all your weaknesses could be saved. Don't try to do RCs and CRs unless you find that SCs went good and you know how to crack them. Then go to CRs, use the same algorithm. And finally try RCs with the same pattern.

While doing SCs try to classify each error which you see not only in the stem, but also in the answer choices. This will help you to increase your Verbal. I'm non-native speakr and tried it during my 2.5 weeks of prep for GMAT in last December. It went well and I scored 39 on the actual test, even though I scored 34 on diagnostic test.

Good luck, you just can do this, don't give up.

Emmanuel.
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 [#permalink] New post 27 Jun 2004, 12:01
thanks emmanuel.........i'll try to take take things one at a time and see how it goes from there :)

- ash
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ash
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 [#permalink] New post 28 Jun 2004, 10:10
ashkg wrote:
Hi Praet,
Thanks for the quick reply ! Here's some more info and some more questions :)

My problem is that I will not have much time to prepare for GMAT after the exam date ( @Noon - 10th July ). I have a new project starting "very soon" and I am sure that I am going to be burdened.

The good part is that I have 14 days where I can almost give undivided attention to GMAT. So this is all the time I really have. I have taken leave for the last week. I do not intend to take the GMAT again unless I get a really bad score. Indians have a really tough time with something like 650 and an average profile ( IT industry 3-4 yrs w/e, etc )

My 4-5 hrs estimation was wrong. I can easily put in 8 hours for these 14 days.

As for the error log. Here's what I have been doing. I make an answer sheet in my notepad and mark which q's I get wrong. The mistake I made was that I revisited the questions only after I had finished the whole OG. I hadn't learnt from my mistakes. I had only picked up most of the rules.
Right now I have only been redoing SC questions. I have marked the CR's which I got wrong too. I will be revisiting them too.

Another part where I feel I lack is knowledge of basic/formal grammar ( I have spoken english most of my life but never studied formal grammar before ). I have mostly studied PR and Kaplan strategies for SC and the material they have provided. I was thinking of whether to spend some time on the TOEFL book I have. ( Time is a constraint here...as the grammar portion is quite big ) I also have Strunk and White and was wondering to go through that.

As for RC and CR I haven't been doing much reading practice ( sometimes I do read a few articles from the economist, but not too many)
My reading speed is not too great, at good speed it might reach 350. I realize that if it goes over 400 my comprehension falls rapidly. With average passages I do OK and its only the tough and long passages that leads to wrong answers. I summarize the paragraphs most of the time ( I create a roadmap), so I have made some improvement from before.

I will be going ahead with the same date, so keeping that in mind what would you suggest now ?

Today seeing the V13 in crack-gmat test I became a little desperate and worried. The low score was due to getting first 7/15 wrong. Total 26/41 ratio didnt do much to the V13.

I am thinking of redoing the whole SC portion of OG and the CR's which I got wrong. For RC I need to get used to tough passages so I plan to take LSATs for that.

I will postpone 885SC till I finish OG again. LSAT CR's I can begin once I am thorough with OG.

Awaiting a reply :)

- thanks
ash.


sorry for a late response. been quite busy with a project for gmat club.

If thats the situation you are in, you dont have much choice. take it and tell me good news in two weeks. :)

8 hours is a lot of time to study in a day. i would suggest that you break it down into sessions of 2 hours each. at the end of each session, review what you have done.. take a break and start again.

Strunk and White is basic. i would suggest that you refer to

webster.commnet.edu/grammar ( hope the link is right)

Study all of your grammar from this website. come back here and ask questions in the verbal concepts forum. i hope me or someone else will be able to reply. Like i said earlier, master the idioms and master the rules of grammar.

About strategies, with practice and after referring to your errors, try to come up with a plan. Make a checklist or decide an order in which to solve a problem. Fine tune your strategy and with time, you will have your own method of solving the questions on the verbal and quant.

Regards
Praet
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 [#permalink] New post 28 Jun 2004, 12:28
Thanks Praet,
I hope I have some good news to tell you soon :)

- ash
_________________

ash
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I'm crossing the bridge.........

  [#permalink] 28 Jun 2004, 12:28
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