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Helpful Sentence Correction Strategies ?

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New post 20 Jan 2019, 02:53
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Hi

I recently had to sit the GMAT at very short notice to because I needed a GMAT score for a masters course I was applying too. I achieved a pretty poor score, I expected my Verbal score to be better than I got but I think with nerves etc it threw me off a little.

When I have sat practice tests I have noticed my weakest point is SC in the time constraints. I think if I could come up with a strategy on how to approach these questions, I may perform better when nervous. I was wondering if anyone had any strategies towards SC they could share which has helped them?

I aiming to do some long term study e.g. around 6-8 months instead of cramming just so I can see what score I get after more preperation.

Many Thanks!
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Re: Helpful Sentence Correction Strategies ?  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Jan 2019, 13:43
Hi bad_math,

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?
2) What study materials have you used so far?
3) How have you scored on EACH of your CATs/mocks (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?
4) How did you score on the Official GMAT (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores)?

Goals:
5) What is your goal score?
6) Was this Score strong enough to get you into the Masters Program that you were interested in?

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Re: Helpful Sentence Correction Strategies ?  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Jan 2019, 20:04
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Hi bad_math,

First off, let me say that your handle is quite ironic given that you are looking only for verbal help :). In any case, here is some advice you can follow to improve your Sentence Correction skills.

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 have to work on all three of those aspects.

Regarding what you know, first and foremost, you MUST know your grammar rules. Let's be clear, though: GMAT Sentence Correction is not really a test of knowledge of grammar rules. The reason for learning the 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. Likely, the main reason that Sentence Correction has not "clicked" for you is that you have not put enough work into developing your skill in seeing what is going on in the various versions of the sentence that the answer choices create. To develop this skill, you probably have to slow way down. You won't develop this skill by spending under 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 those reasons are not 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 answer were always the one 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. It may take time for you to see what you have to see. Getting the right answers takes a certain work ethic. You have to be determined to see the differences 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 that resulted in your arriving at that answer and what you could do differently in order 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 have done differently to extend your streak.

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 will then want to practice with questions that test you on skills from multiple Sentence Correction topics.

You also may find it helpful to read my article about
how to score a 700+ on the GMAT.

Feel free to reach out with any further questions.

Good luck!
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New post 24 Jan 2019, 05:12
Hi bad_math, since you mention SC as your specific area of concern, thought I would mention that our sentence correction book Sentence Correction Nirvana is perhaps the only book that offers a score improvement guarantee, and is especially designed for non-native speakers.

After reading the book twice (yes! it's an academic book, and so must be read twice in all seriousness, to reinforce the concepts), you will start looking forward to solving SC questions!

The book is available on Flipkart and Amazon.in. You might want to refer to these sites, to also read testimonials of how readers have benefited.

See here how Mohit, who scored 750 on GMAT, vouches for our book.

If you want to sample a chapter before deciding to go ahead with our book, please PM me your mail-id (along with the chapter that you would like to sample) and I will be happy to send that chapter to you by mail. In addition, the entire Grammar section of the book is also available for free preview at pothi.
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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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New post 24 Jan 2019, 06:15
bad_math wrote:
Hi

I recently had to sit the GMAT at very short notice to because I needed a GMAT score for a masters course I was applying too. I achieved a pretty poor score, I expected my Verbal score to be better than I got but I think with nerves etc it threw me off a little.

When I have sat practice tests I have noticed my weakest point is SC in the time constraints. I think if I could come up with a strategy on how to approach these questions, I may perform better when nervous. I was wondering if anyone had any strategies towards SC they could share which has helped them?

I aiming to do some long term study e.g. around 6-8 months instead of cramming just so I can see what score I get after more preperation.

Many Thanks!


Hi bad_math,

For verbal especially for SC, I would highly encourage you to consider e-gmat verbal online or the e-gmat verbal live course. They are both amazing courses especially designed for non-natives. They offer almost 25% of their courses for free so you can try out their free trial to decide which one you want to go for. Plus the e-gmat Scholaranium which is included in both the courses is one of the best verbal practice tools in the market. You can easily track your progress in that you can identify your strengths and analyze and improve on your weak areas.

Further taking multiple mocks might help. Apart from the GMATPREP, Manhattan GMAT tests and Veritas Prep Tests in my experience have good verbal and Quant section and will certainly help you point out and improve your weak areas.

Further another advantage of taking many mocks is to build up your stamina. Apart from the GMATPREP tests, taking practise tests of any major GMATPREP company ought to do that.

I would also encourage you to purchase the GMATPREP QP 1 for some great additional practice. Here is a link that will help you with your decision.

https://gmatclub.com/forum/best-gmat-ve ... ml?fl=menu

Hope this helps. All the best.
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New post 24 Jan 2019, 08:43
Hi bad_math,

If you are going to prep on your own, you'l' need a textbook. You can read the reviews of verbal books here:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/best-gmat-ve ... ml?fl=menu

Many people find that Manhattan SC is a must have (the latest is 6th edition). Read here:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/gmatclubbing ... 86239.html
https://gmatclub.com/forum/750-q49-v42-85824.html

Other best stories:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/best-gmat-st ... 98512.html

Also, you can watch free videos by Ron, Manhattan prep instructor, here:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/compiled-thu ... 54538.html

Finally, I'd recommend to avoid non-official sentence correction questions. The official GMAT question might cost $3000:
https://www.gmatninja.com/2016/10/26/of ... cost-3000/

If you're done with both free official CATs, you can download more than 600 official questions here. DO NOT attempt these questions unless you're done with both free official CATs.

If you need a study plan, check here:
https://gmatclub.com/forum/gmat-study-plan-217827.html

Happy studying!
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Helpful Sentence Correction Strategies ?   [#permalink] 24 Jan 2019, 08:43
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