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The MGMAT CR guide suggests using a strategy called

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The MGMAT CR guide suggests using a strategy called [#permalink] New post 05 Jan 2010, 10:16
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The MGMAT CR guide suggests using a strategy called "diagramming" which is the process of taking shorthand notes describing the CR premises and conclusion (when appropriate). This can be a useful strategy when the wording is complicated, but MGMAT suggests always performing this task. I find with a huge majority of the CR questions, diagramming is an unnecessary step to understanding the overall question.

Do you guys use the tactic of diagramming sometimes, always, never? What are your thoughts?
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 05 Jan 2010, 10:19
I don't use this method I feel its time consuming
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 05 Jan 2010, 10:26
I tend to never use this method. Only with the insanely tough CR problems is this remotely necessary IMO. And even with those, if it's so hard that you find yourself making this huge diagram and wasting time, it's probably best to make an educated guess and move on.
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 20 Feb 2010, 12:56
does anyone know if the powerscore cr bible suggests diagramming? it's taking me 90 seconds just to diagram.
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 21 Feb 2010, 12:00
Diagramming may be useful as you are first learning to deal with CR questions, especially challenging ones. If it works for you great, but I would find it real time consuming and quite frankly, a distraction.

When I did the LSAT a few years ago my best technique was intense, teetering on delusional, amounts of practice. You'll begin to see patterns, identify common tricks and traps, and you'll progress as a result - without diagramming. I found even when talking with friends I'd be in autopilot mode thinking "what would strength what he just said, what assumption did he just make", etc. hahaha

If it helps great but I'd think it would slow me down too much. Maybe just save it for the harder ones?

hope it helps.
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 21 Feb 2010, 23:24
If it suits you well, use it; else, don't fret. BUT, I would recommend you to try it. Don't expect magic to happen instantly, only with practice you'll get the hang of it.

I use it - always. Though, not in the similar way as described in the book, but just chalking out key words - it helps me form a mental picture and separates Premise from Conclusion.

Over time, I've managed complete a question under 1.5 mins.
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 19 Mar 2011, 13:39
I learned to not diagram CR during my LSAT days. I had to skip the entire diagramming section in the MGMAT CR guide. I found it way too distracting and time consuming. The only potential benefit I see is that since GMAT isn't a paper-based test, you cannot make notes on the question/answer choices. Writing keywords down may help with recall.

Try and see how you like it.
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 19 Mar 2011, 19:38
username123 wrote:
does anyone know if the powerscore cr bible suggests diagramming? it's taking me 90 seconds just to diagram.


Hope you are referring to Arrow Diagrams e.g A-->B.
Power score bible does uses Arrow Diagrams e.g A-->B. for conditional and cause and effect reasoning.
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 20 Mar 2011, 06:06
Idk I found it ultimately distracting and was able to consistently get 100% of my CR problems right w/o any fancy tricks.
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 20 Mar 2011, 09:07
I am using the MGMAT CR book and I do find diagramming to be a great strategy but it takes lot of time. So it would be better to reserve this for questions that we find hard. I do jot down a few imp thngs as I read a passage for CR
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it? [#permalink] New post 19 Apr 2011, 15:01
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By week 7 of my class I hope that the bulk of my students are *not* diagramming on most CR questions. Opinions will differ among various instructors (in our company and at others) but especially for those scoring above 650, it's not realistic to diagram on every single CR question.

BUT.

In order to get to the point where you don't have to diagram on most questions (when I took the real test the first time, I think I ended up diagramming on 2-3 of the hardest questions, and that was it)--you must have some sort of repeatable framework for synthesizing the information you're reading. For most of my students, that means meticulously practicing some form of diagramming early on to build in a mental structure for *how to understand* a CR argument (and answer choices). Eventually, with practice, the need for the external signs of that structure (written notes on paper) melts away-- it's like like ditching training wheels on a bicycle. BUT I notice over and over again, especially for those students who are not strong in CR to begin with, that a lack of a diagramming process early on during study because it "takes too much time" will result in much less improvement in the long run than those who were willing to slog through the diagramming at the beginning of the ordeal and can eventually let it go.

I'm also of the opinion that no one method is right for everyone, so you should adapt your diagramming method to what suits you. For example, some of my students want a more simple bullet-point way of notating, so I encourage them to follow that impulse, making sure to put a box around the conclusion and add "+" or "-" to designate premises for or against the conclusion.

In new-agey terms, there are many doors to the same room :) Just make sure you *have* a door, and that it's comfortable for you.
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Re: Diagramming - do you do it?   [#permalink] 19 Apr 2011, 15:01
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