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Stuck at 35 (verbal score)

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Stuck at 35 (verbal score) [#permalink] New post 04 Jan 2014, 07:08
Hi everyone,

I need your advice or a hint where I can get advice :-)

I have been practicing for the Gmat for ~ two months now, but my verbal score is not improving signifcantly. In the beginning my score varied between 65% and 84%, but I am currently scoring ~ 75% (3 cats). I have already worked with all of the mgmat guides and I am also confident concerning their content. My strongest area is SC (average question difficulty for correct answers around 730), but my scores in RC & CR vary a lot...and sometimes I get quite a few of the easier questions incorrectly, but do well on the harder ones. I am also used to read scientific literature in English so this should not be a problem. In general I think I should be able to answer the questions correctly but somehow I am not able to do so...

The only explanation I have come up with is that I cannot keep up my concentration for the entire CAT (especially because quant is harder for me and I really have to remain concentraded during this part of the test). Any advice on how I can stay concentrated? Or do you think I should work on other areas?

(I am also not a native speaker, if that is relevant)

Thank you so much for your help.
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Re: Stuck at 35 (verbal score) [#permalink] New post 04 Jan 2014, 09:06
Hi lee07,
I am in the same boat. Took 4 mgmat CATs and scored 35V in each. I am non-native as well.
Concentration is crucial and the best way to impove it is to do as much tests as you can.
You defenitely have to do both sections but stay close to OG and don't use a lot of ambiguous sources. If you already exhausted (and I suppose you did) all og materials, read all explanations for cr, not only for those you did wrong but for others as well. It will help you to follow the logic of authors and realize how it actually works. Having done bunch of problems from unreliable sources I started to notice what questions are of good quality and what are not. OG (13,2) and mgmat tests (cr questions) are more than enough for you to do the best on the actual test. Generally, CR is the next section (after SC) that you may improve in short time.
Things are more difficult with RC. It requires a lot of time, more than one can believe. I think you need to observe what topics you are more comfortable with (say history) and what are the dark side for you (science for example). Then you will concentrate on your weak area. The same thing is with types of questions. My problem is 'inference' type, so I work on it actively.
The fact that you do more mistakes on easy problems means that you try to find a trap where there isn't one. You just start to be suspicious, but most questions are not too intricate as we would like them to see.
Good luck with your perfomance.
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Re: Stuck at 35 (verbal score) [#permalink] New post 08 Jan 2014, 12:44
Expert's post
At GMAT Pill, we recommend doing "practice sprints" to build your stamina. You need to build your stamina so you can increase the duration of your concentration on test day. It's going to be a marathon day.

Here's how you do "practice sprints":
1) Pick a question at random
2) Answer it as fast as you can - using whatever strategies, tips and techniques you learned (we recommend the GMAT Pill frameworks)
3) Pause for 30 seconds
4) Repeat for another question you pick at random.

You want to simulate exam mode when time, nerves, and your future are on the line. Do that repeatedly -- and you'll see that by exam day, your endurance will be a lot longer.

It's the same idea as high intensity interval training -- which serves to increase your VO2 max -- so when you run long distance your ability to efficiently use oxygen and capacity to store it is much better. It works similar for GMAT practice sprints.
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Re: Stuck at 35 (verbal score) [#permalink] New post 23 Jan 2014, 04:15
lMarial wrote:
Hi lee07,
I am in the same boat. Took 4 mgmat CATs and scored 35V in each. I am non-native as well.
Concentration is crucial and the best way to impove it is to do as much tests as you can.
You defenitely have to do both sections but stay close to OG and don't use a lot of ambiguous sources. If you already exhausted (and I suppose you did) all og materials, read all explanations for cr, not only for those you did wrong but for others as well. It will help you to follow the logic of authors and realize how it actually works. Having done bunch of problems from unreliable sources I started to notice what questions are of good quality and what are not. OG (13,2) and mgmat tests (cr questions) are more than enough for you to do the best on the actual test. Generally, CR is the next section (after SC) that you may improve in short time.
Things are more difficult with RC. It requires a lot of time, more than one can believe. I think you need to observe what topics you are more comfortable with (say history) and what are the dark side for you (science for example). Then you will concentrate on your weak area. The same thing is with types of questions. My problem is 'inference' type, so I work on it actively.
The fact that you do more mistakes on easy problems means that you try to find a trap where there isn't one. You just start to be suspicious, but most questions are not too intricate as we would like them to see.
Good luck with your perfomance.



MGMAT's can be insanely tough....I scored between V38 and V36 in all my MGMAT tests. I ended up scoring V42 on the real GMAT. I scored V41 on GMAT Prep 1 and V42 and GMAT prep2 ...with some more practise you could bring yourself up to V36-V38 on MGMAT. That could translate to a score higher than 90 percentile on the real GMAT! You might just be doing great there!!
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Re: Stuck at 35 (verbal score)   [#permalink] 23 Jan 2014, 04:15
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