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Help understanding the Kaplan Cat Test scores

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Manager
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Help understanding the Kaplan Cat Test scores [#permalink] New post 01 Nov 2010, 18:15
Hello once again friends,
I just finished doing Kaplan's online free practice test (i believe it was CAT?), and scored 650, Q39 and V43.

Some stats:
DS: 9/14 correct
PS: 17/23 correct
CR: 11/11 correct
RC: 12/14 correct (and man, were these texts rough!)
SC: 12/16

My D-Day for GMAT is December 23rd. I am looking to score 650+ on it. I also took GMAT Prep, scoring 640 (Q36, V 41).
I am not an expert in analysis of scores, but i would say that my Verbal is pretty strong (although English is not my first language, which makes me wonder). From what i can see, DS causes me the most struggle. I would like to improve my Quantitative if possible, but i am afraid of focusing on it too much, therefore hurting my Verbal. I also noticed that most of my Verbal mistakes come from SC, but since the Verbal scores are pretty high on constant basis, i may want to neglect this weakness (due to the limited amount of time) and just focus on Quantitative, particularly DS (ordered Veritas Prep's DS book).
Any advice or prognosis based on my results so far would be much appreciated.
Also, for what its worth, i took GMAT two years ago, with zero preparation, and scored 560 (can't remember raw scores). These scores of 650 on Kaplan and 640 on GMAT Prep come after 10 days of studying (2 hours a day). Any thoughts on my chances to go 650+ in such a short period of time?

Thanks so much guys, your kindness and helpfulness is outstanding!
8-)
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[highlight]Monster collection of Verbal questions (RC, CR, and SC)[/highlight]
massive-collection-of-verbal-questions-sc-rc-and-cr-106195.html#p832142

[highlight]Massive collection of thousands of Data Sufficiency and Problem Solving questions and answers:[/highlight]
1001-ds-questions-file-106193.html#p832133

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Re: Help understanding the Kaplan Cat Test scores [#permalink] New post 01 Nov 2010, 18:49
In my opinion, this is a great beginning. You still have more than one and half month to go, and I think you can target 700+ easily.

My suggestion is to do tough problems for Quant. Once you practice enough, your score will get elevated to a new level.

I am still struggling with verbal, and if you have any tips on RC or CR, please share them when you get a chance.
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700 (Q:49 V:35) - Thanks GMATClub - Test Center experience

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Re: Help understanding the Kaplan Cat Test scores [#permalink] New post 02 Nov 2010, 12:29
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jb2010 wrote:
In my opinion, this is a great beginning. You still have more than one and half month to go, and I think you can target 700+ easily.

My suggestion is to do tough problems for Quant. Once you practice enough, your score will get elevated to a new level.

I am still struggling with verbal, and if you have any tips on RC or CR, please share them when you get a chance.


Hey buddy, thanks for answering!
I will probably focus on DS and some other Q problem areas and only work on SC in Verbal...

As far as my RC and CR...
When reading the RC text, i think of couple of things:
1. as i'm reading it, i try to think what the purpose of the text is. Usually, after you enter the second paragraph, you are able to conclude what the main topic/purpose of the text is, since the first paragraph is usually introduction, second is either supporting or contrasting the intro. This way, when you're done reading the text, and one of the questions asks the main purpose of the passage, you already know what to look for in offered answers. Also, i pay attention to the tone of the article (critical, supportive, etc).
2. While reading the text, i try to remember central words. Usually, if text is 3 paragraphs long, there will be 3 words/terms i call "central." For example, say text starts off with saying how dangerous food contamination can be, and how it can be divided to chemical and the more dangerous kind, biological. Right here, i remember words chemical and biological, and move on. Next paragraph goes to divide biological contaminators into streptococcus and salmonella, for example, and discusses streptococcus. In this one, i remember that word, streptococcus. In the final, third paragraph, author discusses salmonella and concludes the importance of preparing the food right. I remember the word salmonella and the conclusion. This way, whenever one or more of the questions ask about specifics from the text, you know immediately where to turn without having to read again, searching for the right line. Also, try to remember writer's attitude towards the topic (agreeable or not), because question like that almost always comes.

When it comes to CR, process is similar. While i read the short text, i try to understand what the conclusion, assumption or logic of the argument is, before i even read the question. Since the most RC's are concerned with asking you what would strengthen/weaken, support the argument, or what flaws there are in it, you may be ready to answer it immediately. Also, after you read the question, try to answer it before looking at the answers. What i mean by it: Say question asks you what would most likely weaken the conclusion presented above. Before you look at the answers, analyze and decide what the conclusion is. You decide that the argument of the author is that more trucks there are on the highway, more accidents there will be, for example. Once you know what the conclusion is, you can approximate what kind of situation would weaken it. Also, forget about the article and retain the author's conclusion only. If you are having trouble identifying the answer, go back and look for the additional detail you may have missed.

My friend, this is just what works for me. In a nutshell, i try to predict the questions as i read texts, therefore making my job easier. Usually, RC questions ask for the purpose, tone, main idea, or some detail or assumption from the text. RC are usually concerned with identifying things that weaken/strengthen the argument, or what would most likely have to be true type of questions.

Of course, there will be some questions which deviate from the routinely asked ones, but these are most likely to appear often. This may be an awful method for all i know, but it constantly outs me in 90+ percentile on CAT's and i have no problem with it. :lol:

If you have any more questions, feel free to ask...

P.S. If my understanding of Quantitative section was as good as the comprehension of the Verbal one, I'd shoot for Harvard :twisted:
_________________

[highlight]Monster collection of Verbal questions (RC, CR, and SC)[/highlight]
massive-collection-of-verbal-questions-sc-rc-and-cr-106195.html#p832142

[highlight]Massive collection of thousands of Data Sufficiency and Problem Solving questions and answers:[/highlight]
1001-ds-questions-file-106193.html#p832133

Manager
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Re: Help understanding the Kaplan Cat Test scores [#permalink] New post 04 Nov 2010, 13:16
Re: Help understanding the Kaplan Cat Test scores   [#permalink] 04 Nov 2010, 13:16
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