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GMAT Done  Now Some Tips [#permalink]
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05 Apr 2013, 12:59
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Real Gmat vs GMAT Prep tests: I found these to be most like the real exam (as often repeated by many people). The math will be slightly harder on the real test because of the added variable of anxiety. Master what I tell you below and that will make life easier. The verbal section was literally exactly the same. (I say the word "literally" just like Rob Lowe in Parks and Rec)
Advice on Practice Tests  GMAT Prep and Manhattan. The Manhattan tests give great step by step explainers that should be learned to a T. However, the GMAT PREP is most like the real deal. Take both repeatedly.
And for the record, I scored exactly what I wanted to score on the GMAT. I am not going to throw numbers out because I believe a lot of you are deluded. The vast majority of you think you can only take advice from people who score in the mid 700's. This is probably why a lot of you are struggling. You are not even going to see questions that will allow your score to go that high unless you master the 500600 level questions.
Math Tips: Become experts at what I list below. Buy a composition notebook, write QUANT on the front and then add in pages and pages of these types of problems. Write out the entire problem, then write out the step by step solving process. Go over this notebook everyday. And again for the record, don't only do the problems I list below. Add them into your study.
Distance Problems: Know how to set up the common types of distance problems without blinking. I can guarantee most of you are going to see a distance problem in one form or another, maybe more. But, word to the wise, you cannot rest after you have mastered only the common problems. Highly unlikely the gmat will give you a simple distance problem. It will most likely be in the form of an "overtake" or worse it will be morphed into a right triangle question, which leads me to my next point.
Triangles: Know triangles. More importantly, know the common right triangles and understand how to pull the root 2 and root 3 out of 45 45 and 30 60 triangles. You must know how to do that quickly and efficiently.
Lines, slopes, points: Learn as much as you can about equations of lines, slopes, etc. Take it a step further and make sure if you are given 3 points you can quickly deduce the perimeter. Then prepare yourself for the perimeter to be intermixed into a distance problem. Probably something like x drove one side of the triangle at 45pmh and y drove the other two at 80mph, what was the difference in time they spent driving....etc Expect problems like this and make sure you find problems like these to study. Doing this will make all other problems seem simple and will not freak you out if you encounter them on the real test.
Exponents: You should be able to do reduce and solve all exponent problems quickly and efficiently. Eat, sleep, and drink exponents before the gmat. If you see small numbers with big exponents, know how to break those down without any hesitation.
Work Problems: joe cleans dishes in 3 hours, betty does it in 7. Know all the ways to figure out the rates forwards and backwards.
Probability: If I have a 1/3 chance of passing history, a 1/2 chance of passing math, and a 3/4 chance of passing gym class, what is the probability that I will pass at least 1 class? I'm going to go away and solve this problem. And I'm back. It took me 11 seconds. I lost a second because my pen didn't work right away. If this problem takes you more than 11 seconds to solve, study more.
What's the square root of 361? If you don't know that in .1 seconds, study. Memorize up to 25 and be able to rapid fire them.
Final Math Tip: Know when to draw the line and click an answer. Even if you haven't yet been able to rule out 1 answer choice, you must be able to judge that the amount of time you may spend ruling out just one answer choice is not going to help you and may very well ruin the entire math section. Know when to give up and move on.
Of course there are more math topics you should become very quick at, but if you can do the above very quickly and with confidence, the time saved will allow you to solve the complexities that will be intermixed into the problems.
Verbal: I did all the sentence correction and CR's and most RC's in the OG13 and read Manhattan SC. But equally important, I read a few chapters of the book Arguably by Christopher Hitchens every night in the weeks before the GMAT. His english is fantastic and will make your brain work. He is constantly making arguments which will make CR questions appear easy. Even if you don't agree with his politics, read this book for the few weeks before the test and your brain will thank me afterwards.
