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BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker.

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BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 27 Jan 2011, 08:18
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Hello guys, I cannot say that i am new to this forum but i am new to the idea of sharing my experience with you all.

Last night whilst in flight to London, i decided that i will put my thoughts and experience out here on this forum. And the reason behind this is i want to put my plans, target and strategy for GMAT, which can help others, out here for others to scrutinise and to seek advice.

Here's my story so far.

I'm not a native-English speaker. I have been working in finance sector for past 7 years. Last year, i decided to pursue for MBA , and luckily i found this website, which helped me to put together my thoughts & plans into action.

I bought most of the GMAT study material by May2010, but opened it only after November2010. There were many reason why i delayed but that's something to discuss some other day.

20th December 2010

I Organised all the books and E-books i had bought over the period of 6 months. I logged back to GMATclub and start looking for THE BEST STUDY PLAN. I found many moving experiences, of GMATclub members, shared on this website. Those experiences opened my eyes that that this journey for 700+ will not be the easy one. I like the study plan mentioned by BB. As per that i decided to devote entire 4 weeks for Quantitative section, and to keep practising quantitative question till i succeed Q44, and keep a error log for all questions i attempt.

Once i achieve Q44 i will start with Verbal section for four weeks.

Quantitative Section

WeekQ1 - 20th Dec 2010
Material used: MGMAT books and GMATclubs Math book. I guess these are more than enough to brush up Math basics.
Week1 Breakdown: I felt comfortable with basic maths and along the way i picked up new techniques and strategies.
Also started doing 5-10 SC questions on this forum each day.

WeekQ2 - 27th Dec 2010

Material used: Diagnostic test and OG12
WeekQ2 Breakdown: My diagnostic test result was Q35 V32. Utterly disappointed i turned towards GMATclub's quantitative forum, as i was looking for any one with similar score or some one with similar agony. Also, i was looking for some advice and motivation from quant gurus out there. Few helped me and few didn't even bothered to answer.
To my surprise, i was doing really good at OG questions. My accuracy was almost 85% for PS and 80% for DS.

WeekQ3 - 3rd Jan 2011

Material used: GMAT hack's (Jeff Sackmann) 1000 questions. Bit pricey but worth it.
WeekQ3 Breakdown: After very disappointing week2, i decided to buy 1000 questions from GMAThack. as an Engineer i believe that one needs to know basics before locking horns with tough quant questions.
I started with GMAT hack's questions sets, which are in total 10, with 100 questions in each set. Details of these can be found on http://gmathacks.com/
I completed almost 6 sets. Four more to go :(

WeekQ4 - 10th Jan 2011

Material used: GMAT hack's (Jeff Sackmann) 1000 questions and GMATprep 1.
WeekQ4 Breakdown: By the end of this week, i have completed all the sets of GMAThack. And i was ready to put my knowledge to acid test, by taking GMATprep1's quantitative section. I was very nervous, as i really don't need any more setbacks.
I started good but soon i fell into the trap set up by GMAT. I spent too much time at few questions and that cost me dearly. My advice - Choose your battles. One cannot solve all the problems with getting into time problem. Jokes apart, please do not waste time on questions which are difficult to crack in 2 mins. MOVE ON.
I did verbal section half heartedly because i missed out on many quant questions and because i was bit too anxious to know my quant result.
At the end of the exam, with utter disgust, i clicked next. To my surprise i scored Q44 and V26.
In quant i attempted in total 23 questions within time and out of which i scored 21 correct. In remaining 16 question i simply clicked my way to the finish line, as i don't want to get penalised. I scored only 2 correct out of last 16Q. I was/am SUPER confused about my score. how one can get 44 after making so many mistakes.
I checked my mistakes and did the remaining 16 questions. I found the test was not that difficult.
Mistakes i made: Poor time management, Half-hearted attempt in verbal, and Failed to review verbal section. Lesson learnt - Practise practise practise till i get timing issue erased.
Well i congratulated myself to achieve my quant target, and decided to move on to Verbal section.



Verbal section - THE BEAST

Target: 40

WeekV1 - 17th Jan 2011
Material used: MGMAT books, Powerscore Sc & CR and GMATclubs Grammar book . I guess these are more than enough to beat the BEAST.
Week1 Breakdown: I started off with GMAT clubs grammar book and finished it by the end of the week.

WeekV2 - 24th Jan 2011
Material used: MGMAT books, Powerscore Sc & CR and GMATclubs Grammar book . I guess these are more than enough to beat the BEAST.
Week2 Breakdown: I have almost completed MGMAT SC & Powerscore SC book.
Accuracy for SC till date: 65% - questions from various source such as gmatclub forum, OG11/12, 1000s and mgmat online forum.
Accuracy for CR till date: 85% - questions from OG12 - did first 60 questions.
Accuracy for RC till date: 80% - questions from OG11. did first 4 RCs.
i did GMATclubs M01; i scored 29/37. I guess i am on right track.

Aim for this week:
To complete MGMAT SC & Powersocre - including all the OG12 questions mentioned in MGMAT.
To do GMATclubs test M02 & if possible redo all the error log questions for quant.
Sunday - do MGMAT 01. GOD help me.

Scared - Yes i am as i don't know my real level in CR & RC, as i was doing only OG questions in these two sections. OG questions are normally not that difficult, especially those in the beginning.

I will post my progress report almost daily on this thread. Also i will share any issue which i am sure i will face in this difficult and exciting journey.

I will appreciate it if you guys can provide some feedback or if you guys can share your experience and strategy so far.

Lets motivate each other and help each other to BEAT THE BEAST.

PS: I'm looking for a study group based in London. If someone interested then PM me.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 27 Jan 2011, 13:28
The book that has helped me the most (as a non-native) is Aristotle SC Grail. I've done a quick review of Manhattan SC but in my opinion SC Grail is much easier to learn and comprehend. However, since you already have Manhattan SC that will suffice if you are satisfied with the book.

If you have time, start reading english novels, being used to intermediate english texts has helped me read faster and grasp a lot more of the text than I would have otherwise.

Good luck to you!
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 28 Jan 2011, 00:57
@Mackieman - Thanks for ur advice. i will check this book out this weekend. I heard good things about it.

No, i don't have much time in hand for reading novels. although, i read Free Metro newspaper, in the morning rush hour, and Evening standard. Apart from those, i read 2-3 articles on FT everyday.

Anyhow i will try to read at least one novel before the G day.

Yesterday's update.
Did another set of CR - OG12 Q61-Q80, only 1 incorrect. I went out to play badminton and somehow managed to fracture my right hand thumb. God help me.
Its an agonising day.

Today's mission:
Maths word problem - To do 30 DS questions from GMAThack.
SC: 20 questions from OG12 - Modifiers and comparisons.
RC: 2 RCs from R99 or OG12.

But it all depends on how i feel in the evening. At present i don't feel good.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 28 Jan 2011, 01:02
sorry completely missed out on RC strategy in use.
I'm using Ryhme's strategy, it's very useful, and Gin's RC strategy.

verbal-rc-help-30247.html
gmat-club-s-reading-comprehension-strategy-guide-83101.html

If anyone knows some better technique then please do share.
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Last edited by tirupatibalaji on 30 Jan 2011, 03:27, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 30 Jan 2011, 03:27
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Update 29th-30th Jan 2011
Not a prodcutive weekend as i am Restricted due to my thumb injury. Yesterday, i was reading MGMAT SC & Aristole SC AGAIN, and also managed to finish this amaZING novel The Great Gatsby - a must read novel. Today's plan is to finish CR questions from 81 to 110. And do as many questions as possible.

Deepak - You can put down your plan on paper and we can go through it. Let's make most out of next month.

Its time to do some CRs.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 30 Jan 2011, 03:29
tirupatibalaji wrote:
Update 29th-30th Jan 2011
Not a prodcutive weekend as i am Restricted due to my thumb injury. Yesterday, i was reading MGMAT SC & Aristole SC AGAIN, and also managed to finish this amaZING novel The Great Gatsby - a must read novel. Today's plan is to finish CR questions from 81 to 110. And do as many questions as possible.

Deepak - You can put down your plan on paper and we can go through it. Let's make most out of next month.

Its time to do some CRs.


What do you think of Aristotle SC Grail?
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 30 Jan 2011, 04:44
Quote:
What do you think of Aristotle SC Grail?


Its good if you are short of time or if you want to review all the topics. Its a consolidated MGMAT SC, But MGMAT SC is a must.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 03 Feb 2011, 08:42
I am back in the game after agonising 4 days, as i have bruised my thumb whilst playing badminton.

I have been doing some CRs & RCs for past few days. My accuracy is almost 70% on CR question from 83-124 OG12. And on RC i am following RC99. so far so good. Accuracy rate in RC has been 85%.

But i am SUPER confused whether to pursue the quest of doing 1000s CR questions or not. I read few negative comments about it.

Can anyone reflect their thoughts about it?

And, also if someone can let me know any other practice material available for CR.

As per SC is concerned i have changed my strategy and i will religiously follow OGs, Aristotle's 100SC & brutal SC. doing questions apart from those, mentioned above, is shear waste of time.

I can be wrong?

Guys please suggest if any other material for SC i could follow, in addition to the list mentioned above.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 03 Feb 2011, 08:46
tirupatibalaji wrote:
Quote:
What do you think of Aristotle SC Grail?


Its good if you are short of time or if you want to review all the topics. Its a consolidated MGMAT SC, But MGMAT SC is a must.


You are probably right. Did a full test yesterday and scored V39 with 100% RC but a lot of mistakes in SC. I need to focus more on SC :(
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 03 Feb 2011, 08:58
@Mackieman
Hey you are doing awesome job. 100% in RC that's really good. What was your SC & CR %s ?

Aristotle's 100SC questions are really good. Questions coupled with good explanations of concept tested. I am currently working on it.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 03 Feb 2011, 09:13
tirupatibalaji wrote:
@Mackieman
Hey you are doing awesome job. 100% in RC that's really good. What was your SC & CR %s ?

Aristotle's 100SC questions are really good. Questions coupled with good explanations of concept tested. I am currently working on it.


Based on the split 14-14-13 or so I had 2/14 (15%) CR incorrect and 7/14 incorrect SC (lol). I was not 100% focused during the verbal part, I'm usually not that bad at SC. I'll have go through the questions and see how silly mistakes I made.

Previous tests I've gotten V41 (my first test) and V37 (the second test)

My goal is at least at least 40 on G-day in 3 weeks, I've put in most effort in quant during the last weeks though so I'll have to throw in an extra gear in SC now.

I'm planning on doing ~30SC a day from now on, do you think it's too many or too few?
Material
Primary:
OG 10&12 with repeating until I've learned everything there is to learn
Aristotle 100's

Secondary:
Manhattan SC
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2011, 01:19
I'm planning on doing ~30SC a day from now on, do you think it's too many or too few?
Material
Primary:
OG 10&12 with repeating until I've learned everything there is to learn
Aristotle 100's

Secondary:
Manhattan SC[/quote]


as long as you learn something out of those 30Q then its all good. If i were you i will do 2RC+20SC + 20CR/day And devote rest of the time to quant.
May be you could do 2 RC & 10 CR whilst at work...
And when you reach home you could do the rest.

Hey what you think of Aristotle's 100's?
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2011, 03:27
Quote:
as long as you learn something out of those 30Q then its all good. If i were you i will do 2RC+20SC + 20CR/day And devote rest of the time to quant.
May be you could do 2 RC & 10 CR whilst at work...
And when you reach home you could do the rest.

Hey what you think of Aristotle's 100's?


I'll propably skip RC completely since I read a lot of english articles and books. However, CR is a good idea though. I'm currently writing on my bachelor thesis so I have a couple of hours per day to devote to GMAT.

Aristotle 100 q's are okay I guess, they are quite straightforward if you combine them with the info in the book. Altough sometimes there's only a slight difference between the correct answer and some other alternative, compared to OG, the wrong answers in OG usually consists of multiple errors.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2011, 03:39
Mackieman wrote:
Quote:
Aristotle 100 q's are okay I guess, they are quite straightforward if you combine them with the info in the book. Altough sometimes there's only a slight difference between the correct answer and some other alternative, compared to OG, the wrong answers in OG usually consists of multiple errors.


what is your correct answer hit rate in SC?
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2011, 03:47
tirupatibalaji wrote:
Mackieman wrote:
Quote:
Aristotle 100 q's are okay I guess, they are quite straightforward if you combine them with the info in the book. Altough sometimes there's only a slight difference between the correct answer and some other alternative, compared to OG, the wrong answers in OG usually consists of multiple errors.


what is your correct answer hit rate in SC?


In Aristotle, around 75%.

Starting with OG12 SC tomorrow ,so I'll report the stats for OG later.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2011, 03:59
I got almost same % as yours. I am looking for OG10..... just cannot find it anywhere.
I don't know which book shall i consult for SC practise.

I have finished Aristotle & OG12. what do you suggest?
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 04 Feb 2011, 18:24
OP can you say a little bit more about what you thought of the GMAT Hacks books? I have seen them a little bit, but I don't know a ton about them. 50 bucks for a pdf seems incredibly pricey though, so I am shying away from purchasing them. How hard are the questions when juxtaposed with the actual GMAT?
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 08 Feb 2011, 23:00
tirupatibalaji wrote:
I got almost same % as yours. I am looking for OG10..... just cannot find it anywhere.
I don't know which book shall i consult for SC practise.

I have finished Aristotle & OG12. what do you suggest?


Well, how well have you done questions in OG12 ? A lot of people just do questions and spend little time on analysing the questions.And even if they do, they'll most of the times just analyse the questions superficially. I think if you read the explanations in OG12, you'll benefit a lot as your understanding of the questions will really improve.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2011, 01:14
Well i am back in the loop. I had a miserable week in terms of GMAT prep. I did nuff all for past 7 days.

But now i am back with vengeance. I dropped the idea of doing 1000s SC questions. But certainly i will go through 1000s CR questions. I've started with R99 with a target of at least 3 passages a day.

In SC i will stick with Aristotle and OGs.

@shovitdhar - Thanks for your advice. Yes i went through OG12, and its explanations. It was useful but still i feel vulnerable to SC part of GMAT. I have decided to go through OG12 again coupled with Ron Purenwala's explanations. May be you could share some more tips n golden advice with me.

Have a nice day all.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker. [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2011, 01:58
tirupatibalaji wrote:
I got almost same % as yours. I am looking for OG10..... just cannot find it anywhere.
I don't know which book shall i consult for SC practise.

I have finished Aristotle & OG12. what do you suggest?


I've done all the OG12 SC q's now. Compared to Aristotle I find that OG12 differ a lot more in difficulty.
A lot of OG questions are very easy, some medium and the rest very difficult. Some questions I could not make any sense out of at all.

I have only 2 weeks left until G-day (22 February) so I'll propably be better of by focusing on quailty instead of quantity. From now on I'll re-read Aristotle, read Manhattan SC, and focus on OG11, re-do OG12 and some Veritas SC.
I hope that will suffice for me to reach about 75% correct SC on G-day.
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Re: BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker.   [#permalink] 09 Feb 2011, 01:58
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BEAT the BEAST with Non-Native speaker.

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