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I have also adopted that reading from heart approach (for RC) and I am really observing the improvement but in doing so, I am loosing the grip on my timing. I am loosing alot of time in solving the RC questions. Will you suggest how I can improve the timing while I am reading cautiously at the same time?
jpv, to understand a passage doesn't mean you have to spend more time on a passage. You don't have to understand each and every details in the paragraph. You should read at your normal speed, but just try to understand it when you read it. I know it is easier said than done.
Another tip is that the questions usually cover the entire passage and most of the time the order of the questions would follow the flow of the article. So if you find yourself looking for answers in the last paragraph only, or something like that, it must be wrong.
Speechless, Speechless, that's how you make me feel
Though I wish I were you (subjunctive right???)
I am far away and everything seems real
I'll go anywhere and do anything just to touch your score
There's no mountain high I cannot climb now
I'm humbled by your feat
Speechless, Speechless, that's how you make me feel
Though I'm right here I am lost for words and now I understand...
You definitely ROCK Hong!!!! Whatelse can I say? Been checking out in the last 2 days, just to make sure ETS rewards your diligence and hardwork! Awesome! Kindly visit and PLEASE don't say goodbye.
My personal statement for PhD application. Criticisms please [#permalink]
23 Feb 2005, 22:43
In the afternoon of February 15, 2005, I sat inside my car, stopped in the intersection of Providence Road and Tenth Street. I watched as over two thousand police cars from all across the state of XX slowly drove past me, in a funeral procession for police officer Molly Bowden, who had died from gunshots when she was on duty. Still flashing in my excited mind was the test score of 780 that appeared on the screen of the computer I used to take my GMAT test less than an hour before. I suddenly realized how phenomenal life is, and how deeply appreciative I was for the chance that I was given.
What drives me in life is not ambition, as it is for many. I have never sought power or fame. What drives me is a curiosity about the world, and a thirst for tasting different aspects of life. My childhood was rough, with mom and dad, like many other â€œintellectualsâ€
Last edited by HongHu on 24 Feb 2005, 09:00, edited 1 time in total.
Amazing story! Interesting background, HongHu. I cannot believe this website attracted some wonderful people like you. If I have a chance, I would like to know you or anyone of us here in real life. I think I have another reason for me to get MBA. I want to meet all of the most intelligent people on earth.
Honghu, I am so glad to have crossed path with you on GMATclub. Your story is very inspiring and I myself have a relative who graduated from Tsinghua University 2 generations ago. It is just a blessing to have you here sharing with us this so enlightening story and to see how the maxim that life is a trajectory rather than a destination applies to you.
I wonder how your english was before arriving to the US because it is just astonishing. You must have some inherent language learning skills. Hearing about you makes me laugh about how, in my early university years, I would laugh along when the teacher would throw a joke at us without really understanding it. I would then jot down all the words I did not understand and go to the library after almost every class to look up those ununderstood words . Although english is easier to learn than french, or certainly chinese , it is still a challenge for many test-takers.
I just hope to meet you one day so I can put a face on this brilliant (intellectually and emotionally) person of yours. _________________
Thank you for sharing your background. Very impressive!! I am sure your encouragement and sugessions are of paramount importance for prospective GMAT'ers in effectively planning our preparation.
I whole hartedly thank you for your effort to encourage the forum.
Wish you all the best & good luck,
Thanks guys. To have met with you all here has been a great pleasure and inspiration for myself too. And thanks Paul for your encouragement. My English is certainly far from perfect, it is so apparent from the many mistakes I often make. But I enjoy being able to write out what I want to say, and I certainly enjoy learning more and improving myself. One of the best things of having friends, is that one gets to enrich herself from the interaction with them, to learn from them, and to be supported and encouraged by them.
Perhaps, one of these days, when everything is done (I know I know), we could have a club meet somewhere ...
Your story is inspiring.We are so lucky to interact with you here.
Your determinstion against all odds is just amazing.Being the main bread earner in the family,taking care of the kids& family work,being non-native english speaker,and then go and score 780,is just unbeleivable.
Well,about my story,it is opposite of yours.Just gave gmat yesterday and got a nightmare score.I got a pathetic 18 in verbal.Irony is,I was one of the toppers back in the school,and was good at both math and english.(I have engineering degree from India,and have been working in bay area,US the past ten years).
I did not prepare that well(due to time contraint).I am generally a person with strong beleif in my abilities but this low score shattered my confidence levels.My known weak points are ,my not so strong vocab and my slow reading pace.In the gmat test and practice test, I found myself re-reading few times the same passage when the passage has few new words that I did not know of or if it is a convoluted.This is also due to the less time we have in verbal.Now that I have about 3 months time,I want prepare best and prove this score was not just me.I am not sure whether I need to work on increasing my vocabulary or increase on speed or work on grammer.I did read some of the grammer from the webster site already.I am so confused and running very low in confidence, I would appreciate any advice.
One lesson I learned from you:No excuses.I have always postponed my serious-gmat-prep giving myself all the excuses of heavy load at work or being busy with the new home that we bought and so on... one or the other reasons .But looking at your case,these are just simply excuses.One can always find time if really wants to.
Hi, 700plus, I just want to say to you that I know how tough it can be to prepare for a GMAT test while working and having a family, especially when you have a new house. I know all too well about the hassle of buying and moving into a new house. Don't be too harsh on yourself. It's already admirable for you to have the courage to tackle GMAT at this time, and actually find time to study for it.
Don't give up your confidence. You have a good basis to start from. Remember GMAT has its own style. You have to get into its style to get a good score. The fact that you didn't get a good score this time do not mean that you are not good at math and English. You may simply need to get into the rhythm and work on you test skills. I believe three month is sufficient for you to improve your reading pace. I'd do two things if I were you. First I'd read a great amount of materials. Find all the GMAT preparation materials I can find, and simply read their RC passages. I would leave the OG materials untouched, and I would not even do the questions. (I'd look at them and form an answer but I wouldn't do them as I was testing.) I would simply read, read, read. Get myself familiar with the GMAT materials and its styles. I wouldn't even bother to look up the words that I don't know unless it is really crucial for my understanding of the passage. In that case I'd fire up my online dictionary and look it up. The goal is to have as little interruption as possible when I read. And I'd try to understand the passage without slowing my pace. If I didn't understand, I'd read a second time. But I would not study each and every sentence to make sure I understand every little details. The goal is to understand the general idea of the passage. I'd do it everyday, no matter what. Perhaps two or three passages a day so I would read about 100 passages in two months. The second thing I'd do, is starting from 2 month before the test, in every weekend I'd do some timed RC questions perhaps from the OG materials, and study each choices afterwards more carefully. I myself feel that to memorize vocabulary may not help me, since those are too boring and not connected to context. I'd prefer to learn words when I read stuff, and to learn the skills of understanding without knowing every words.
Anyways, the biggest thing is not to lose your confidence. Trust yourself, given time, you'll find the feeling.
Thanks much for your advice Hong.Your kind words definately made me feel good.
That is an interesting approach you have suggested ,going thru max material possible initially and then move onto OG RC.
I have initially tried applying the Kaplan's "skimming" approach and did not work for me.In fact,I have noticed some side effects like reading CR and SC also minimum twice, first time to get the main idea and then to answer the question.
Another thing I noticed was reading WSJ did not help me much.Of course, I have started reading it for its business news rather than as a reading material for GMAT.I have been reading it for more than two years, but did not notice much improvement in my comprehension skills.It may be because I never tried to analyze the writing style or because it is my interesting area thus easy to understand.
If you dont mind,I would like to ask you how you have managed to improve your verbal skills.I understand that you did not have to work much on these skilss lately however you must have had some struggles at some point being a non-native speaker.During that period any perticular strategy you have followed.
It came to me rather natually, actually. I like to read and write, in Chinese, initially. When I first came to the US, I tried to read some English books, but I couldn't finish the first five pages. I had to look up so many words from the dictionary that it wasn't fun any more. But I didn't have any pressure, so I basically dropped it. Two years later I picked up some books again, (starting from Agatha Christie's novels, one of my favorite readings) and I decided not to bother taking out the dictionary and just read. And that has done the trick for me. Later I read more things on different subjects. Another thing that might have helped is that I started reading online a lot the recent two years. Online news, forums, etc. This made me more comfortable with the CAT style of GMAT, I think.
For you, I think reading WallStreet Journal is definitely a good thing. However, GMAT reading materials cover a much broader range. The hardest ones are in the areas of law and medicine, for me at least. The trick there for me is not to care about details, and just try to understand what is the entire paragraph about. So if I was asked about a passage after I read it once, I would tell you something like this: "There was this case about American Indian's right for water. There had been some provisions about water rights for them in the law, but this case expanded their rights in certain specific circumstances, etc." I wouldn't remember the name of the case, nor the time of the case. I don't know if this is what they called skimming. But I can say that only reading the starting sentence and concluding sentence is NOT going to work for a lot of passages. Skimming for me, doesn't mean not reading some parts. It's just to focus on getting the main idea without paying too much attention to the details.
Regarding reading materials for you, remember what I said is to read as many passages as possible, but to limit the range of the materials to GMAT type readings. Also since there are only this many OG passages, you don't want to waste them for your initial practise. Re-reading something is definitely going to feel differently from reading it fresh. You need to use them at the most crucial time and use them for the maximum impact.
You are actually doing skimming(according Kaplan atleast),so, do you also jot down any line numbers while reading the passage. In other words, when you read the question,do you goto a line directly or kind of re-read again to get detailed picture.There are always it atleast two good answers,so how do you do you try to differrentiate between them?
No, I don't write down anything when I read. I'd like to read as continuously without any interruption as possible. How would I know which details would be the ones that got be asked anyway? Sometimes, it will tell you the line number or which paragraph to look for in the questions. Other times, when you see the question you'll know which part should you go look. About half of the questions though, you don't even need to reread the passage, if you have really understood the question.
It seems you know the CR very well, but I have a difficulty in CR.
Could you tell me how to boost the CR or are there any other materials for paracticing?
Sometimes the bottleneck is I cannot figure out what does the question said or misunderstand the question. Moreover, I found that it always take me at least 2 minutes to pick a choice. I know it is too slow, but I really don't know what to do.
CR is different from RC. In RC you can skim the passage as long as you understand the general idea. For CR you have to read each and every sentence very very carefully. You need to be able to repeat the author's line of reasoning by yourself before you pick the answers. Try this for the forum CR questions, see if that'll help you.