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# Help with Critical Reasoning

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Intern
Joined: 03 Jan 2017
Posts: 23
GMAT 1: 680 Q49 V34

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03 Mar 2017, 14:38
1
I recently took the GMAT and I got 680 (Q49 V34). I was disappointed until I saw my ESR breakdown for verbal. My SC and RC was 88th and 85th percentiles respectively but my CR was 5th percentile! I am normally bad at CR and have practiced but still my score in that is so low it seems to be dragging my verbal down too much. Does anyone have any suggestion on how I can improve this? I need 700, so I just need to improve my verbal to V36 assuming I maintain my quant score.
Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 4485
Re: Help with Critical Reasoning  [#permalink]

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03 Mar 2017, 15:24
texas wrote:
I recently took the GMAT and I got 680 (Q49 V34). I was disappointed until I saw my ESR breakdown for verbal. My SC and RC was 88th and 85th percentiles respectively but my CR was 5th percentile! I am normally bad at CR and have practiced but still my score in that is so low it seems to be dragging my verbal down too much. Does anyone have any suggestion on how I can improve this? I need 700, so I just need to improve my verbal to V36 assuming I maintain my quant score.

Dear texas,

I'm happy to respond.

First of all, congratulations on a strong GMAT experience otherwise. Also, please DO NOT take the Quant or the SC & RC for granted on any retake. Yes, you need to focus on CR, but do not underestimate the challenges of the areas in which you excelled the first time. That is the biggest mistake of people preparing for a GMAT retake.

First of all, I am going to recommend a few blogs:
Introduction to GMAT Critical Reasoning
GMAT Critical Reasoning and Outside Knowledge
Doing GMAT Critical Reasoning Quickly
The first blog has links to other articles discussing each of the CR question types.

As you may surmise from those blogs, part of what I am going to recommend is read. Read business news. Read the Economist magazine. Read the Financial Times and Bloomberg Businessweek. Hunt down the arguments that happen in the real world, and for each one, force yourself to think about the CR question--what are the assumptions? what would strengthen or weaken the argument? what can we infer? what further information would we need to evaluate it?

As you practice CR arguments, certainly read the solution and keep an error log. In addition to that, for any CR question you got wrong, come hear to GMAT Club. Search for the question, read the discussion, and post your own unanswered questions in that thread. You are welcome to ask for my help, using the "mention this user" feature.

Finally, here are a couple free CR practice questions:
ACL injuries
The TJ-700 and
When you submit your answer, the following page will have a complete video explanation of the question. Each Magoosh practice question has its own VE: that kind of immediate feedback is exactly what you need to make big strides on the GMAT CR.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Mike
_________________

Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. — William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)

EMPOWERgmat Instructor
Status: GMAT Assassin/Co-Founder
Affiliations: EMPOWERgmat
Joined: 19 Dec 2014
Posts: 13353
Location: United States (CA)
GMAT 1: 800 Q51 V49
GRE 1: Q170 V170
Re: Help with Critical Reasoning  [#permalink]

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03 Mar 2017, 19:06
Hi texas,

First off, a 680/Q49 is a fantastic score (it's above the 85th percentile overall), so it could very well be enough to get you into your first-choice Business School. As such, a retest might not be necessary. Depending on the Schools that you plan to apply to, you would likely find it beneficial to speak with an Admissions Expert about your overall profile. There's a Forum full of them here:

If you do choose to retest though, then we have to examine how you were studying previously.

1) How long have you studied?
2) What materials have you used?
3) How have you scored on each of your CATs (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores)?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
_________________

760+: Learn What GMAT Assassins Do to Score at the Highest Levels
Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

# Rich Cohen

Co-Founder & GMAT Assassin

Special Offer: Save \$75 + GMAT Club Tests Free
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Intern
Joined: 03 Jan 2017
Posts: 23
GMAT 1: 680 Q49 V34
Re: Help with Critical Reasoning  [#permalink]

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03 Mar 2017, 22:40

I am looking to apply to US PhD Finance programs for 2018. So I am looking for a 700 GMAT at least. I have studied for about 3 months using E-GMAT mainly for both QUANT and VERBAL. I have also used MGMAT for Advanced Quant and Verbal books. I also use PowerScore for Criticial Reasoning. I have also taken two GMAT prep exams

GMAT prep 1: 680 (Q49 V34)
GMAT prep 2: 680 (Q50 V33)

My Quant is around Q49-Q50, whic is where I need it to be. But my ESR showing my SC is 85th percentile (equivalent to 39) and RC being 88th percentile (equivalent to 41) suggests that if I can improve my CR, I could crack a high verbal score too and get above 700.

Hope this helps
Manager
Joined: 15 Mar 2014
Posts: 140
Location: India
Concentration: Technology, General Management
GPA: 3.5
WE: Operations (Telecommunications)
Re: Help with Critical Reasoning  [#permalink]

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03 Mar 2017, 23:31
texas wrote:
I recently took the GMAT and I got 680 (Q49 V34). I was disappointed until I saw my ESR breakdown for verbal. My SC and RC was 88th and 85th percentiles respectively but my CR was 5th percentile! I am normally bad at CR and have practiced but still my score in that is so low it seems to be dragging my verbal down too much. Does anyone have any suggestion on how I can improve this? I need 700, so I just need to improve my verbal to V36 assuming I maintain my quant score.

You can definitely improve your scores! Have you gone through the whole Powerscore CR? I believe it has all the rules required to score high!

Check out this comprehensive CR guide by another member.

https://gmatclub.com/forum/zomg-the-ban ... 00473.html

If you need more resources, check the below link. It has a consolidation of the resources you need to crack the CR section. Best of luck

https://gmatclub.com/forum/ultimate-ver ... 33279.html
_________________

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EMPOWERgmat Instructor
Status: GMAT Assassin/Co-Founder
Affiliations: EMPOWERgmat
Joined: 19 Dec 2014
Posts: 13353
Location: United States (CA)
GMAT 1: 800 Q51 V49
GRE 1: Q170 V170
Re: Help with Critical Reasoning  [#permalink]

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04 Mar 2017, 11:53
Hi texas,

PhD Programs tend to be rather competitive, since there are often a number of high-quality applicants for a relatively small number of 'spots.' In that way, each application tends to be really 'nit-picked.' While a slightly higher GMAT score might help your application(s), you really need to be sure that you have a strong OVERALL application AND that you are properly 'marketing yourself' to each individual Program. You would likely find it beneficial to speak with an Admissions Expert about your overall profile and plans. There's a Forum full of them here:

The two CAT scores that you listed are remarkably similar to your Official GMAT score - which means that you're fairly consistent in how you 'see' (and respond to) the GMAT. A score in the V33-V34 range usually means that you're missing points in one of the 3 major Verbal categories (SC, RC and CR). If your analysis is correct - and the CR is your 'weak spot' - then some concentrated study in that area might be all that you need. If you've been approaching this process with a 'book heavy' study approach, then that might be a factor in why your scores have not improved - so investing in some new, non-book study materials would probably be beneficial.

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
_________________

760+: Learn What GMAT Assassins Do to Score at the Highest Levels
Contact Rich at: Rich.C@empowergmat.com

# Rich Cohen

Co-Founder & GMAT Assassin

Special Offer: Save \$75 + GMAT Club Tests Free
Official GMAT Exam Packs + 70 Pt. Improvement Guarantee
www.empowergmat.com/

*****Select EMPOWERgmat Courses now include ALL 6 Official GMAC CATs!*****

Re: Help with Critical Reasoning &nbs [#permalink] 04 Mar 2017, 11:53
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# Help with Critical Reasoning

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