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Help needed for Verbal, 650 (V28, Q50)

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Joined: 23 Apr 2019
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Location: United States
Concentration: Entrepreneurship, Technology
GMAT 1: 650 Q50 V28
GPA: 3.92
Help needed for Verbal, 650 (V28, Q50)  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Jul 2019, 17:52
I wrote my official GMAT today (July 27, 2019) and did horrible in verbal.

Score: 650 (v28, q50)

Help Needed


I have schedule another exam on Aug 24 which gives me almost 4 weeks to prepare. Could you please recommend what would be the best strategy for me to prepare verbal.

I already did Manhattan SC. I tried CR and RC books but didn't find them useful. I am a non-native speaker. (Indian)

SC,
* This is what I spent my most time preparing for and think it impacted my score.
* I did Manhattan SC but TBH I fail at applying the rules I learnt to questions.
* Also I did GMATPill SC, which is okay.
* Also I did 50 Questions by Sandeep Gupta, which I think really helped me in building up the concept which I could apply.

RC,
* I majorly just practiced OG questions in timed mode and didn't quite look at why did I get them wrong. Most of the time I got wrong because I skimmed the passage and didn't quite understand it. I corrected this by building up passage map, and every time being engaged with the passage. This helped me and I was doing reasonably well on OG online questions.
* I have tried skimming but it doesn't work for me.
CR,
* I did the Manhattan book but didn't find it really helpful. All OG Questions I did I was getting 70% right.

Practice and Mock exam results


May 5, 610 (V30, Q44) - GMATPrep Exam 1
May 12, 600 (v31, q43) - Manhattan Cat 1
May 27, 590 (v31, q41) - Manhattan Cat 2
June 30, 670 (v33, q49) - GMATPrep Exam 4
July 13, 680 (v36, q47) - GMATPrep Exam 3
July 21, 650 (v30, q49) - GMATPrep Exam 2
July 27, 650 (v28, q50) - Official


Preparation Timeline


May - Manhattan Prep Books and Mock tests
June - GMATPill SC (10 Days) and Official Guide Tests (17 Days, alternate Quant and Verbal) +
July - GMATPill IR (~7 Days) + GMATPill RC (~4-5 days) + Official Guide Questions Online RC + GMATClub Quant Tests


Things I learned


* GMATClub is a marketplace. You have to be really careful while being here. It is useful but also distracting. There were so many times, I ended up on one of the GMAT prep coaching sites and browsing. To the extent that my facebook feed also have ads e-GMAT now a days. I think if you keep yourself focused to comments on GMATClub and don't click on any "click here to learn more about this concept". I wish there was an AD Free paid version of GMATClub :)

* GMATPill SC pill is good. Assuming other pills would be equally helpful, I tried them but they were not. Wasted some time there.

* I should have visited my Error log more often and should have practiced the questions I missed again.

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Re: Help needed for Verbal, 650 (V28, Q50)  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Jul 2019, 13:08
Hi heyrohit,

GMAC has publicly stated that the Official Score that you earn on Test Day is within +/- 30 points of actual ability. Assuming a similar 'swing' in how your CATs function, your 4 recent CAT score results - along with your Official Score - show that you essentially performed the same each time (about 670 +/- a few points). You handle certain aspects of the GMAT consistently well, but you also make certain consistent mistakes.

Before I can offer you the specific advice that you’re looking for, it would help if you could provide a bit more information on how you've been studying and your goals:

Studies:
1) How long have you studied in total? How many hours do you typically study each week?
2) What is your overall goal score?
3) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
4) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

You might also choose to purchase the Enhanced Score Report. While the ESR doesn’t provide a lot of information, there are usually a few data points that we can use to define what went wrong on Test Day (and what you should work on to score higher). If you purchase the ESR, then I'll be happy to analyze it for you.

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Re: Help needed for Verbal, 650 (V28, Q50)  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Jul 2019, 09:17
Hi Rohit, can you share your ESR?

That will give us more insights.
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Thanks,
Ashish
EducationAisle, Bangalore

Sentence Correction Nirvana available on Amazon.in and Flipkart

Now! Preview the entire Grammar Section of Sentence Correction Nirvana at pothi.com
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Re: Help needed for Verbal, 650 (V28, Q50)  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Jul 2019, 09:51
Hi heyrohit,

Given that you scored V28 on your GMAT and did not break V36 on any practice exams, you need to look at HOW you have been preparing and make some changes right? Moving forward, to improve your verbal skills, you should follow a linear and structured study plan that allows you to individually learn each GMAT verbal topic and then practice each topic until you’ve gained mastery. Let me expand on this idea further.

For example, when studying Critical Reasoning, you need to ensure that you fully understand the essence of the various question types. Do you know the importance of an assumption within an argument? Can you easily spot a conclusion? Do you know how to resolve a paradox? Do you know how to properly evaluate cause and effect? Do you know how to properly weaken or strengthen an argument? These are just a few examples; you really need to take a deep dive into the individual Critical Reasoning topics to develop the necessary skills to properly attack any Critical Reasoning questions that you encounter.

As you learn each Critical Reasoning problem type, do focused practice so that you can track your skill in answering each type. If, for example, you incorrectly answered a Weaken the Argument question, ask yourself why. Did you make a careless mistake? Did you not recognize the specific question type? Were you doing too much analysis in your head? Did you skip over a keyword in an answer choice? You must thoroughly analyze your mistakes and seek to turn weaknesses into strengths by focusing on the question types you dread seeing and the questions you take a long time to answer correctly.

When practicing Reading Comprehension, you need to develop a reading strategy that is both efficient and thorough. Reading too fast and not understanding what you have read are equally as harmful as reading too slow and using up too much time. When attacking Reading Comprehension passages, you must have one clear goal in mind: to understand the context of what you are reading. However, you must do so efficiently, so you need to avoid getting bogged down in the details of each paragraph and focus on understanding the main point of each paragraph. That being said, do not fall into the trap of thinking that you can just read the intro and the conclusion and comprehend the main idea of a paragraph. As you read a paragraph, consider how the context of the paragraph relates to previous paragraphs, so you can continue developing your overall understanding of the passage. Furthermore, as you practice Reading Comprehension, focus on the exact types of questions with which you struggle: Find the Main Idea, Inference, Author’s Tone, etc. As with Critical Reasoning, analyze your incorrect answers to better determine why you tend to get a particular question type wrong, and then improve upon your weaknesses. You can perfect your reading strategy with a lot of practice, but keep in mind that GMAT Reading Comprehension passages are not meant to be stimulating. So, to better prepare yourself to tackle such bland passages, read magazines with similar content and style, such as The Economist, Scientific American, and Smithsonian.

Sentence Correction is a bit of a different animal compared to Reading Comprehension and Critical Reasoning. There are three aspects to getting correct answers to GMAT Sentence Correction questions: what you know, such as grammar rules, what you see, such as violations of grammar rules and the logic of sentence structure, and what you do, such as carefully considering each answer choice in the context of the non-underlined portion of the sentence. To drive up your Sentence Correction score, you likely will have to work on all three of those aspects. Furthermore, the likely reason that your Sentence Correction performance has not improved is that you have not been working on all three of those aspects.

Regarding what you know, to be successful in Sentence Correction, first and foremost, you MUST know your grammar rules. Let's be clear, though: GMAT Sentence Correction is not just a test of knowledge of grammar rules. The reason for learning grammar rules is so that you can determine what sentences convey and whether sentences are well-constructed. In fact, in many cases, incorrect answers to Sentence Correction questions are grammatically flawless. Thus, often your task is to use your knowledge of grammar rules to determine which answer choice creates the most logical sentence meaning and structure.

This determination of whether sentences are well-constructed and logical is the second aspect of finding correct answers to Sentence Correction questions, what you see. To develop this skill, you probably have to slow way down. You won't develop this skill by spending less than two minutes per question. For a while, anyway, you have to spend time with each question, maybe even ten or fifteen minutes on one question sometimes, analyzing every answer choice until you see the details that you have to see in order to choose the correct answer. As you go through the answer choices, consider the meaning conveyed by each version of the sentence. Does the meaning make sense? Even if you can tell what the version is SUPPOSED to convey, does the version really convey that meaning? Is there a verb to go with the subject? Do all pronouns clearly refer to nouns? By slowing way down and looking for these details, you learn to see what you have to see in order to clearly understand which answer to a Sentence Correction question is correct.

There is only one correct answer to any Sentence Correction question, there are clear reasons why that choice is correct and the others are not, and none of those reasons are that the correct version simply "sounds right." In fact, the correct version often sounds a little off at first. That correct answers may sound a little off is not surprising. If the correct answers were always the ones that sounded right, then most people most of the time would get Sentence Correction questions correct, without really knowing why the wrong answers were wrong and the correct answers were correct. So, you have to go beyond choosing what "sounds right" and learn to clearly see the logical reasons why one choice is better than all of the others.

As for the third aspect of getting Sentence Correction questions correct, what you do, the main thing you have to do is be very careful. You have to make sure that you are truly considering the structures of sentences and the meanings conveyed rather than allowing yourself to be tricked into choosing trap answers that sound right but don't convey meanings that make sense. You also have to make sure that you put some real energy into finding the correct answers. Finding the correct answer to a Sentence Correction question may take bouncing from choice to choice repeatedly until you start to see the differences between the choices that make all choices wrong except for one. Often, when you first look at the choices, only one or two seem obviously incorrect. Getting the right answers takes a certain work ethic. You have to put in the necessary time to see the differences between answers and to figure out the precise reasons that one choice is correct.

To improve what you do when you answer Sentence Correction questions, seek to become aware of how you are going about answering them. Are you being careful and looking for logic and details, or are you quickly eliminating choices that sound a little off and then choosing the best of the rest? If you choose an incorrect answer, consider what you did to arrive at that answer and what you could do differently to arrive at correct answers more consistently. Furthermore, see how many questions you can get correct in a row as you practice. If you break your streak by missing one, consider what you could do differently to extend your streak.

As with your Critical Reasoning and Reading Comprehension regimens, after learning a particular Sentence Correction topic, engage in focused practice with 30 questions or more that involve that topic. As your skills improve, you’ll then want to practice with questions that test you on skills from multiple SC topics.

Ultimately, if you are unable to learn and practice in the manner described above, you may consider looking for additional verbal prep resources. If you are unsure of which resources to choose, check out some reviews here on GMAT Club.

You also may find my article with more information regarding
how to score a 700+ on the GMAT helpful.

Feel free to reach out with any questions.

Good luck!
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GMAT 1: 650 Q50 V28
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Help needed for Verbal, 650 (V28, Q50)  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Aug 2019, 15:40
Today I gave my official GMAT again and scored exactly same.

Aug 24: 650 (v28, q50, IR 5)

Quite heart-broken with the fact that last one month of study didn't lead to any improvement in my score.

Last one month I dedicated 95% of prep to verbal and was getting quite confident with my SCs.

Planning to take a break now before attempting again.

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Red line shows number of incorrect that day

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"You responded correctly to 75% of the first set of questions, 57% of the second set of questions, 71% of the third set of
questions and 25% of the final set of questions."
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Re: Help needed for Verbal, 650 (V28, Q50)  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Aug 2019, 18:00
Hi heyrohit,

Sorry to hear how things went with your GMAT. Regarding your plan forward, try to follow the advice I provided above.

Also, give this article a read:

The Surprising Factor That is the Key to Hitting Your GMAT Score Goal: Grit

Feel free to reach out with further questions. Good luck!
_________________

Scott Woodbury-Stewart

Founder and CEO

Scott@TargetTestPrep.com
TTP - Target Test Prep Logo
122 Reviews

5-star rated online GMAT quant
self study course

See why Target Test Prep is the top rated GMAT quant course on GMAT Club. Read Our Reviews

If you find one of my posts helpful, please take a moment to click on the "Kudos" button.

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Re: Help needed for Verbal, 650 (V28, Q50)   [#permalink] 26 Aug 2019, 18:00
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