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A couple of questions from a newbie

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A couple of questions from a newbie [#permalink] New post 12 Jan 2011, 19:28
Hey Folks,

I'm new here (well, actually I was already sticking around here for a couple of time reading a lot of stuff) and want to take the GMAT in about three (?) months. My goal, as probably most of others', is to crack the 700 because my dream is to study at the LSE. After a lot of research I narrowed my choices down and decided to get the MGMAT Guides and the OG 12. I just took the GMAT Prep to determine a starting point and was to be honest quite disappointed to get a 580 (Q43, V25). Yet I was thinking that with a lot of hard work in the upcoming time maybe I can still bring it up the 120 points.

But after thinking about it, a score of 43 in the quantitative section is not that bad for the first try. Nevertheless there is some hard work necessary to improve my verbal score. Despite being not a native speaker I wouldn't have expected it that bad since I am going to college in the US and already scored 107 on the TOEFL before I started here.

I'm not sure how much time I need to go through the MGMAT Guides and the OG 12 at all. I want to work seriously with them and I think it's about 2000 pages and I doubt that the proposed 120-180 hours in the tutorial are enough to work on that pile of paper. Yet I would very much like to take the GMAT in April.
Also I don't know if I need the verbal and quantitative official guides additionally to work efficiently with the MGMATs.

I would appreciate very much if you could help me out a little bit.
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Re: A couple of questions from a newbie [#permalink] New post 12 Jan 2011, 20:26
The MGMAT books will take you a very long way on their own. I wish I'd done a few more problems out of the OG to get used to seeing actual GMAT questions, but between the MGMAT books and the online question banks and CAT tests you can get a lot done. I started out pretty strong on verbal and got even better based on how they teach you to break down and analyze arguments, eliminate obvious wrong answers on CR and SC, etc. They're very thorough.

I don't remember how many hours I spent going through the 8 books, but I don't think it was anywhere near 180 hours. I just worked through a few chapters a few times a week starting with book 1 and went from there. I think 120 points is doable in 3 months if you have the time to devote to it.
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Re: A couple of questions from a newbie [#permalink] New post 12 Jan 2011, 20:51
selines wrote:
Despite being not a native speaker I wouldn't have expected it that bad since I am going to college in the US and already scored 107 on the TOEFL before I started here.

I think the performance on the Verbal section is not much a function of being a native or a non-native speaker as long as you're comfortable with the English language, use English quite often,read fiction,non-fiction often and watch English movies.
Secondly, a good performance on the TOEFL doesn't essentially imply an equally good performance on the Verbal section on the GMAT because these are two different kind of exams. TOEFL basically tests your ability to speak,write ,listen and read English . On the other hand, the Verbal section on the GMAT is a lot about logic, about rules, analysis, application of strategies etc.
Quote:
I'm not sure how much time I need to go through the MGMAT Guides and the OG 12 at all. I want to work seriously with them and I think it's about 2000 pages and I doubt that the proposed 120-180 hours in the tutorial are enough to work on that pile of paper. Yet I would very much like to take the GMAT in April.

One of the deadly mistakes which people make while preparing for the GMAT is having something targets like "I have to do as many questions as possible in X amount of time". That is quite a fatal strategy and especially for the Verbal section. You need to make sure that you learn from each question,and have definite takeaways from each question. The questions you are going to see on the GMAT are going to be different from the ones you're going to do in say the Official Guides. Hence, instead of targeting at the number of questions you should make sure that you spend as much time as possible with each question. And this especially holds true for Verbal which if not done in the right way can become a difficult mountain to scale.
The ideal way you should tackle the Verbal section is

1. Go through a particular topic,say Pronouns
2. Spend sometime understanding Pronouns.Research a bit on the internet
3. Practice a group of questions which test you on Pronouns.
4. Analyse each question well.Go through the explanations thoroughly. If needed, google the questions. You'll benefit from the years of expertise and discussions on the questions.
5. Move on to the next topic.

This is the ideal way in which you should approach Verbal. In addition to this,I'd recommend participating on the forums here so that you're always on the right track.

Hope that helps! Stay tuned! :)
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Re: A couple of questions from a newbie [#permalink] New post 13 Jan 2011, 07:55
^^ Yeah, that. I should have clarified that in working a bunch of problems you should also LEARN how to work them quickly and efficiently and spend time analyzing why you're missing the ones you're missing. Whether it's not knowing exponent rules, geometry equations, number properties, misapplying grammar rules, whatever.
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Re: A couple of questions from a newbie   [#permalink] 13 Jan 2011, 07:55
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