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HOW TO DESTROY READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGES BY RHYME

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HIGHLY RECOMMENDED TECHNIQUE!!! [#permalink] New post 23 Apr 2011, 05:50
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I must admit when 4-5 months ago I first read Rhyme's method, I thought it was just bullshit and I would never ever use it because I needed to read the passage thoroughly.

And... it took 2 live tests and months of preparation to become a true believe in this technique. IT DOES WORK AND WORKS GREATLY! Rhyme, thanks for enlightement!!!
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 24 Apr 2011, 13:05
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Great techniques. For those who would like to understand how to attack RC through video, you can try these videos:

Approach is similar and different at the same time. See which style fits you best.
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Re: HIGHLY RECOMMENDED TECHNIQUE!!! [#permalink] New post 14 May 2011, 05:37
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Vorskl wrote:
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED TECHNIQUE!!!
I must admit when 4-5 months ago I first read Rhyme's method, I thought it was just bullshit and I would never ever use it because I needed to read the passage thoroughly.

And... it took 2 live tests and months of preparation to become a true believe in this technique. IT DOES WORK AND WORKS GREATLY! Rhyme, thanks for enlightement!!!


Hey, just saw this... thanks!

Glad to see it helped.
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 19 May 2011, 08:37
rhyme wrote:
Vorskl wrote:
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED TECHNIQUE!!!
I must admit when 4-5 months ago I first read Rhyme's method, I thought it was just bullshit and I would never ever use it because I needed to read the passage thoroughly.

And... it took 2 live tests and months of preparation to become a true believe in this technique. IT DOES WORK AND WORKS GREATLY! Rhyme, thanks for enlightement!!!


Hey, just saw this... thanks!

Glad to see it helped.


This methodology of attacking RC gives us hope to survive the next day fighting for GMAT !

Thank you, Rhyme.
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 27 May 2011, 00:43
Dear Rhyme,

I partially agree with your idea. This is exactly what I did to get a 29 in TOEFL ibt reading. I would call it a wise note-taking which can help you 1) grasp the whole idea by reading most important sentences and 2) navigate to the exact location of the detail asked in detail questions. However, it doesn't guarantee that you'll never need to return to text to read a FULL paragraph. My opposite idea is rooted in your sentence "the main point of each paragraph lies in the 1st sentence", which I believe not to apply to all paragraphs. The concluding sentence may be at least as important as the topic sentence to which you are pointing. To my mind, it's better to skim the rest of the sentence NOT just to hunt for numbers, specific names and so on but to get any info expected to help you answer the questions. There's no doubt that the 1st sentence (and the last of course) must be paid better attention compared to the middle sentences, but it doesn't mean that the middle sentences are inferior enough to be abridge to some discrete, isolated words. I believe investing on reading the passage is not sth to worry about since it can help you regain the lost time by not needing to flash back to the text when started to answer the questions.

I haven't yet started GMAT RC. I will later update when I have gone through it.
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 27 May 2011, 01:04
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Dear Rhyme,

I partially agree with your idea. This is exactly what I did to get a 29 in TOEFL ibt reading. I would call it a wise note-taking which can help you 1) grasp the whole idea by reading most important sentences and 2) navigate to the exact location of the detail asked in detail questions. However, it doesn't guarantee that you'll never need to return to text to read a FULL paragraph. My opposite idea is rooted in your sentence "the main point of each paragraph lies in the 1st sentence", which I believe not to apply to all paragraphs. The concluding sentence may be at least as important as the topic sentence to which you are pointing. To my mind, it's better to skim the rest of the paragraph NOT just to hunt for numbers, specific names and so on, but to get any info expected to help you answer the questions. There's no doubt that the 1st sentence (and the last of course) must be paid better attention compared to the middle sentences, but it doesn't mean that the middle sentences are inferior enough to be abridged to some discrete, isolated key words. I believe investing on reading the passage patiently is not sth to worry about since it can help you regain the lost time by not needing to flash back to the text when started to answer the questions. To be more specific, I didn't get the meaning of ALGAE when reading your notes but immediately could guess the meaning while reading (not skimming the paragraph= not reading your notes= but reading the paragraph patiently).
Moreover, in this case, when you have both a mental map and notes at hand, you can start the question with higher self-confidence compared to when you jump to the questions with just some notes and a shattered understanding of the text (as you yourself have admitted in your post and my experience with ALGAE)


One point I wish to emphasize here is the importance of improving one skill in your reading, everybody!
I would call it your mind's ability to control your eyes speed, or EMASA (Eye movement automatic speed adaptation), my own acronym :-D . I DO believe that after reading enough of texts and getting familiar with question types, your eyes can be intelligently adjusting their own speed to reach a balance between time saving and good comprehension. That is, your reading style can be a combination of reading attentively and skimming at the same time, alternatively based on what you are reading at the moment. E.i. your eyes unconsciously know that they should speed down when reading through,say, definitions and they also know that they should speed up while reading about, say, an example of a phenomenon you just digested in the last sentence.

I haven't yet started GMAT RC. I will later update when I have gone through it. But this is what I have come to understand about RC after several years of voraciously reading English literature and other stuff (hold my BA in English literature). I don't consider a big difference between GMAT RC and other RCs expect the time constraint, which as I said can be alleviated by keeping in mind that spending on reading is compensated by a high ROI in answering the questions without referring to the text.

Hope it helps!
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 27 May 2011, 01:53
saeedt wrote:
Dear Rhyme,

I partially agree with your idea. This is exactly what I did to get a 29 in TOEFL ibt reading. I would call it a wise note-taking which can help you 1) grasp the whole idea by reading most important sentences and 2) navigate to the exact location of the detail asked in detail questions. However, it doesn't guarantee that you'll never need to return to text to read a FULL paragraph. My opposite idea is rooted in your sentence "the main point of each paragraph lies in the 1st sentence", which I believe not to apply to all paragraphs. The concluding sentence may be at least as important as the topic sentence to which you are pointing. To my mind, it's better to skim the rest of the paragraph NOT just to hunt for numbers, specific names and so on, but to get any info expected to help you answer the questions. There's no doubt that the 1st sentence (and the last of course) must be paid better attention compared to the middle sentences, but it doesn't mean that the middle sentences are inferior enough to be abridged to some discrete, isolated key words. I believe investing on reading the passage patiently is not sth to worry about since it can help you regain the lost time by not needing to flash back to the text when started to answer the questions. To be more specific, I didn't get the meaning of ALGAE when reading your notes but immediately could guess the meaning while reading (not skimming the paragraph= not reading your notes= but reading the paragraph patiently).
Moreover, in this case, when you have both a mental map and notes at hand, you can start the question with higher self-confidence compared to when you jump to the questions with just some notes and a shattered understanding of the text (as you yourself have admitted in your post and my experience with ALGAE)


One point I wish to emphasize here is the importance of improving one skill in your reading, everybody!
I would call it your mind's ability to control your eyes speed, or EMASA (Eye movement automatic speed adaptation), my own acronym :-D . I DO believe that after reading enough of texts and getting familiar with question types, your eyes can be intelligently adjusting their own speed to reach a balance between time saving and good comprehension. That is, your reading style can be a combination of reading attentively and skimming at the same time, alternatively based on what you are reading at the moment. E.i. your eyes unconsciously know that they should speed down when reading through,say, definitions and they also know that they should speed up while reading about, say, an example of a phenomenon you just digested in the last sentence.

I haven't yet started GMAT RC. I will later update when I have gone through it. But this is what I have come to understand about RC after several years of voraciously reading English literature and other stuff (hold my BA in English literature). I don't consider a big difference between GMAT RC and other RCs expect the time constraint, which as I said can be alleviated by keeping in mind that spending on reading is compensated by a high ROI in answering the questions without referring to the text.

Hope it helps!

good comment
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 03 Jul 2011, 17:58
I will give this approach a shot and see if I can find some improvement in RC! It has become my GMAT verbal nemesis!

Btw, is the Black Death passage a true GMAT passage? I would kill myself if something so dense shows up in my Test. I guess I can never get to the state where GMAT will dare present me this level of RC :p. But you never know with those stupid GMAT dummy questions, if GMAT decides to tease me with such a monster - I guess I should just skip in that case as I should be sure that it is a dummy question and I definitely don't deserve that respect of such a hard RC. BTW... WHAT DO YOU THINK OF SKIPPING, if you are SURE that you can't get such a hard question, so it has to be a test question?
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 23 Jul 2011, 12:21
the best strategy is do 10 RC daily in the last 30 days of exam...so that you keep momentum before exam in RC
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 23 Jul 2011, 16:40
deepakjhamb007 wrote:
the best strategy is do 10 RC daily in the last 30 days of exam...so that you keep momentum before exam in RC


Do you mean 10 RC questions or 10 passages? I will puke my stomach out if I did 10 passage a day :p, moreover these isn't as much RC material out there! I hope you mean 2-4 passage a day? :-)
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 27 Jul 2011, 11:28
KnewtonAlex wrote:
Hello!

I'm going to jump into this spirited thread for a second to see if I can help add some nuances to rhyme's point. He's right, in most ways: reading the entire passage, especially reading it as you would read any other important set of paragraphs in your life, is a waste of time on the GMAT. Do not read to memorize, do not read for serious retention, and do not get caught up in details, lists, lengthy justifications, scientific jargon, or any other complexities, on your passage read. Read the passage with a light, open mind, catching the basic idea of the points and noting the organization (e.g., "ok, this first paragraph explains why this guy's theory about market inefficiency has been overlooked, the second one says why it shouldn't be, the third gives an example of a useful place it could be applied.").

While we try to avoid the word "skim," rhyme is right in that one should NEVER sit down to read the passage as if he or she were sitting in their living room with a pipe and a smoking jacket. The passage is there for REFERENCE. The questions will force test-takers to go back and pick at certain details with a fine-toothed comb, or to draw inferences from single sentences or thoughts. Its not high school or college, where you read the textbook and are then tested on it without being able to go back. So the first read is merely meant for orientation and to get a decent grasp on the subject matter, the author's intentions, and the basic structure.

At Knewton, we recommend an exercise that is so simple that most test-takers don't usually even think about it. Try reading ANYTHING like a GMAT passage; read a news magazine, a short story, your favorite blog, an ad on the bus, the back of an oatmeal box, anything, with the same level of alert referential reading as you expect from yourself on the GMAT. Read it through ONCE, asking yourself as you go, "why is this being written? What is it about? How is it organized? What are the major takeaways?" If you're feeling really good, go back and ask yourself inference questions "The primary concern of this passage is to..." or "The 'investors' in line 6 are most likely to agree with which of the following statements?" or even "which of the following situations is most analogous to the situation outlined in the passage?" Note which details seem the most 'testable' to you. Note points of view: who believes what? What do they use to justify those beliefs?

Getting up to speed on RC is increasing your ability to take in information without READING in the traditional sense, which is what rhyme is after. Happy hunting!

p.s. here's a sample:

Quote:
1) The author of this post's primary purpose is to
a) Supplant rhyme's theory of 'skimming' reading comprehension passages with his own
b) Discuss useful GMAT test-taking strategies and offer relevant examples that are useful to test-takers
c) Encourage test-takers to supplement rhyme's reading comprehension suggestions with practical exercises
d) Raise doubts as to GMAT test-takers' ability to read entire RC passages and answer questions in the allotted time
e) Suggest a variety of practical strategies with which to create sample GMAT inference questions



Thanks for the brief and the points you mentioned in addition to Rhyme's
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 24 Aug 2011, 07:13
Thanks Rhyme for the detailed info on the approach.
I think this is worth a try for everyone out there.

I would also request others who have followed this approach to post a few passages explaining their thought process. I am sure many people are still worried about the use of this technique for answering more general questions.
Rhyme has already explained one such question. But I would still want to have a few more samples explaining the method or approach to answer such questions.

Rhyme has already shown us the path. I cannot ask him to keep on explaining with more examples.
So I would really appreciate if others chip in with few more samples.

Thanks!
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Re: Verbal: RC help! [#permalink] New post 04 Sep 2011, 07:30
This technique is amazing.

Not sure what else to say. I was having difficulty with the MGMAT RC problem set questions until I began utilizing the method. My overall completion time for a set is down as well as my error rate.

Huge kudos for this!
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Re: HOW TO DESTROY READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGES BY RHYME [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2012, 00:50
Great style and thanks for the information. Even though the inital post is not fresh any more. I will try to practice this approach in my verbal prep periord over the next 3 weeks. THANKS!
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Re: HOW TO DESTROY READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGES BY RHYME [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2012, 20:10
Nice post... very well explanied how to deal with RC. Thanks
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Re: HOW TO DESTROY READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGES BY RHYME [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2012, 12:56
I was wondering how applicable this approach is to single dense paragraphs on the RC section.

I was looking at the 12th edition OG RC Q.50 and it's accompanying passage, and it's a killer of a one-paragraph only passage.

Any ideas on how best to tackle it?
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Re: HOW TO DESTROY READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGES BY RHYME [#permalink] New post 23 Mar 2012, 12:34
dpvtank wrote:
I was wondering how applicable this approach is to single dense paragraphs on the RC section.

I was looking at the 12th edition OG RC Q.50 and it's accompanying passage, and it's a killer of a one-paragraph only passage.

Any ideas on how best to tackle it?


To answer my own question, I experimented with the approach with single paragraph passages, and the best technique I've found is to seek out a natural break in the flow of the passage to mentally make it into a separate paragraph. It helps tremendously.
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Re: HOW TO DESTROY READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGES BY RHYME [#permalink] New post 01 Apr 2012, 04:10
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nice thread,.............

but i think for complex passages you can't skim otherwise you can't serach where to go back for specific question......
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Re: HOW TO DESTROY READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGES BY RHYME [#permalink] New post 18 Jun 2012, 00:27
Hi Rhyme,

Of late we have been having RC passages which are only 1 or 2 paragraphs instead of traditional 3 or 4 paras, do you think the mentioned strategy would still work, coz in a 1 paragraph passage, with this strat you study the whole passage.Also I tried your strat for a couple of passages versus traditional "full reading", my hit rate was high only in full reading with both same time duration, does your strat takes more time to evolve?
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Re: HOW TO DESTROY READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGES BY RHYME [#permalink] New post 18 Sep 2012, 00:01
hey. should we follow the same approach with short-passages as well? As in short-passages , reading through one para and just reading the first line of second para , doesnt really helps. one ultimately has to go through the second one.
Re: HOW TO DESTROY READING COMPREHENSION PASSAGES BY RHYME   [#permalink] 18 Sep 2012, 00:01
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