How much work do you show when doing a problem? : General GMAT Questions and Strategies
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# How much work do you show when doing a problem?

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How much work do you show when doing a problem? [#permalink]

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01 Aug 2010, 19:35
I find that most of my careless errors happen when I take mental short cuts to save time. Stupid mistakes such as 750/3 = 150 by doing mentally or not reading that I need to solve for n+10 and solved for N instead and picked that as my answer.

How much work do you show and how do you decrease silly mistakes under a timed environment?

How do you check your work, and how much time do you take doing so?
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Re: How much work do you show when doing a problem? [#permalink]

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02 Aug 2010, 05:51
socalmike wrote:
I find that most of my careless errors happen when I take mental short cuts to save time. Stupid mistakes such as 750/3 = 150 by doing mentally or not reading that I need to solve for n+10 and solved for N instead and picked that as my answer.

How much work do you show and how do you decrease silly mistakes under a timed environment?
i try to show anything involving a variable - at least write the equation down so i have a reference. to reduce silly mistakes you just gotta keep doing problems to get better at not making them really.

How do you check your work, and how much time do you take doing so?

i try to make sure my calculations are correct and when i reach the same answer as the problem i usually just select it.
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Re: How much work do you show when doing a problem? [#permalink]

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02 Aug 2010, 06:40
You don't have to write down absolutely everything. However, as my high school Algebra II teacher always advised, "The more you write down, the less room you leave for mistakes."

There are three main benefits to showing your work. One is that you can backtrack in case you notice that something is wrong later on. Isolating an error is much easier this way. Otherwise, you would probably have to start from the beginning and re-read the question.

Another advantage is that your mind is clear and focused on the question. In a sense, writing down every step serves as a confirmation that you know what you're doing. Another benefit, related to the first, is that you place yourself in an active mind frame. Simply assuming something is passive, and that will get you into trouble during the GMAT. The test, whether in DS or CR, lays traps for you to passively assume things. Never assume anything on the GMAT.

If you're worried about timing issues, then it's all the more important to start practicing by showing your work now. You have plenty of opportunity with the OG and GMATPrep. Overtime, you will gain speed to the point that it won't present a problem on test day.
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Re: How much work do you show when doing a problem? [#permalink]

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02 Aug 2010, 07:28
you should also know your "multiplication tables" - like try to AT LEAST do single digit multiplications in your head instead of writing them down - it helps a lot. You can also try 2 digit X 1 digit multiplication as well to save time.
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Re: How much work do you show when doing a problem? [#permalink]

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27 Aug 2011, 10:21
I face this problem too , since I have a compulsive habit of arriving at the answer rather than relying on elimination of choices and this is eating up my time for each question.
Re: How much work do you show when doing a problem?   [#permalink] 27 Aug 2011, 10:21
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# How much work do you show when doing a problem?

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