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Princeton Review free CAT accuracy? [#permalink]
19 Jun 2011, 13:26

Does anyone have experience with the free GMAT CAT that PR has online? Does anyone know how accurate it is? I got a 690.

I noticed that the math section had some very easy questions, but I still got a lower math score than I got on my MGMAT practice test - which from what I understand has slightly harder math than the real test.

On this PR test I only missed 7 math questions, but my math score was 42. I know it is based on the difficulty of the problems, but I had a few long stretches without missing any questions and it still didn't seem like I was getting very many difficult problems. I did miss two of the last three questions, I wonder if that could be part of it.

As for the verbal, my score was 43. I felt like the CR questions were noticeably tougher than the ones I have encountered with MGMAT or the OG. The 43 is a little higher than what I got on my MGMAT CAT.

For all integers a and b, the operation # is defined as a # b = (–a + b)(b + a). If a = 2 and b = 5, then b # a =

–25 –21 –7 21 25

I marked D 21 as the correct answer, but it says the correct answer is B: -21.

This one has to be B ..

(-5+2)(5+2) = -21. b#a .. u have to interchange the values and assume that the value of a given in the question is now value of b and similarly the value of B is now a.

Even i am stunned by scoring algorithm of Princeton cats. I scored 50 in quant section of Princeton cat 1 with 3 mistakes, then score dropped to 45 with just 4 mistakes on cat2. The verbal section has really depressed me. I scored around 41-44 on my manhattan cats, but even with just 8 mistakes my verbal score plummeted to 31 on verbal section of 2nd princeton cats. All in all, 710-730 on all manhattan cats became 670 and 620 on princeton. With my GMAT just in a few days Princeton has done everything it can to depress me

Yeah that is surprising that it drops the score so much for one additional missed problem. The algorithm they use doesn't seem very good.

Today I was reviewing the questions I missed and one of them appears to be incorrect in their system! I am certain I got it right and it says I got it wrong. It is an easy question too!

Here is the question and tell me if I am right on this:

For all integers a and b, the operation # is defined as a # b = (–a + b)(b + a). If a = 2 and b = 5, then b # a =

–25 –21 –7 21 25

I marked D 21 as the correct answer, but it says the correct answer is B: -21.

Anyway, from what I have heard, the MGMAT CAT's are pretty accurate in their scoring. If you are getting around 710-730 you will probably get around there on the real thing. Have you taken either of the GMAT prep tests yet?

In my experience, the Princeton Review CATs have been somewhat inaccurate. From what I have read, they focus HEAVILY on the first 10 questions of each section. This jives with what I was taught in my Princeton Review Classroom course, where they emphasized that, essentially, the only questions that really matter are the first 10.

This couldn't be farther from the truth, as anyone who has taken the real GMAT will tell you. Go back and look at your results from the PR CAT. You will probably see that you got 1-2 wrong in the first 10 of the math portion. By doing so, you basically guarantee that you can't recover and score >700. I have taken multiple PR GMAT CATs (scores listed below in my sig), and usually missed 5-10 math questions. Conversely, on my MGMAT and GMATPrep CATs, I have missed as many as 16 on math and scored in the mid 700s overall.

I would recommend using the Princeton CATs just for practice with pacing and timing. And yes, the math on PR CATs is a joke. Just take a MGMAT CAT and you'll get your socks knocked off (but still actually score well because their scoring algorithim is much more realistic). Ultimately, the GMATPrep CATs are said to be the best predictors of your score, as they are the ones actually made by the GMAC itself.

Hmm very interesting, thank you for the information. Yes, looking at the test report I missed the 2nd question due to a stupid multiplication error. I guess this is what really threw my score off.

In total I missed questions 2, 11, 12, 15, 29, 35, and 36. However, by my estimation there is an error in the answer key because number 15 I am certain I got right, but it is marked as incorrect. You can see the question in my post above.

Thanks again for the information. I haven't taken a GMATprep test yet, I am saving them for a little later. I guess I'll have to wait until that point to see where I am really at.

The correct answer to that question is minus 21 itself. It's a tricky question, the basic function of a#b is (-a + b)(a +b) irrespective of what name you assign. in next step b and a is reversed, but in B#A you have to take (-b + a)(a+b) as b is assigned the function of A. so it will be (- 5+2) (5+2) = -21

Thanks for kind words regarding effectiveness of manhattan cats. Yes today I gave gmat prep 1. Got q49 v40 which corresponds to about 720. Got previously unknown questions on all sections except cr . Some of the crs I got I had seen before on forums. I think princeton skews the scoring because of easier questions it offers. However it's verbal section is not that easy so not a good algorithm at all.

Oh now I feel sheepish. I read it wrong, I thought I was finding a#b. Thanks for clearing that up for me.

Yeah I think the algorithm is poor, and considering the questions don't seem to be representative of the real test I'm not going to stress much about it.

Good job on the GMATprep test. Good luck with the GMAT, let us know how you do.

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