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How much Math do you really need to know?

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Intern
Joined: 19 Feb 2005
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How much Math do you really need to know? [#permalink]

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04 May 2005, 17:57
I misposted this question apparently elsewhere. Here's a second try at it.

If you have little experience at math (a couple basic courses in UG, not even calc), can you still crack the GMAT quant with the proper prep or are you doomed and forced to rely on your verbal to prop you up (but knowing that the quant is going to likely sink you even if you destroy the verbal)?

My wife, who has an MS in Math and is about a class short of ABD, took a look at some sample quant questions and wasn't even sure what they were getting at for some of them or how to set up an equation. granted, she's a little rusty (hasn't taught stats/prob in 10 years, and only taught one section), but I figure if it makes her scratch her head in any way, it'll SINK me.

So please all, level with me, is there a chance for a person with stats aptitude but little math or quant background to crack the quant by repetition and learning enough tricks? BTW, I did very well on the LSAT (law school version of GMAT) several years ago. It's not math-oriented, but there's a ton of logic-type problems on it, which I ate for lunch.

Am I spitting in the wind or is there hope?

Thanks.
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04 May 2005, 19:17
There is lots of hope. As a matter of fact, it is easier for quant challenged aspirants to bring up their quant score to a decent level. Moreover, you do not need anything more than college level math to achieve a good quant score. Even though your wife was challenged by some math questions, it is simply because she was not used to the kind of GMAT questions asked. Practice makes perfect. It is very much possible for an average person, one like myself, to score over 700 just by tackling the exam in a very rigorous way. The first thing you should do is reading the different stickies in the "GMAT" and "share your experience" forums and assimilate the advice given by our members. Do not forget to actively participate in the math forum if you want to perform well. Good luck.
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Paul

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05 May 2005, 07:05
Paul:

Thanks for the advice and kind words. I'll get over to the Math section.
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05 May 2005, 15:39
I agree with Paul and take his statement one step further:

Virtually everything one needs to know for a respectable score on the GMAT Quantitative was probably taught in high school!

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18 May 2005, 02:11
Oh yeah, ALL of it was taught in high school math by the time I was 16. But the problem is, what was 15 years ago and I sucked at it to begin with...damn math will kill me.

But it IS easier to improve than verbal, if your verbal needs work, that's for sure. Whether I will or not is another story...

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18 May 2005, 10:58
I see your point Patro, but remember how distracted most of us were at 16. Perhaps now that everyone is older, wiser, and more disciplined the conquest of HS math will be easier . . .

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18 May 2005, 18:48
Hjort wrote:
I see your point Patro, but remember how distracted most of us were at 16. Perhaps now that everyone is older, wiser, and more disciplined the conquest of HS math will be easier . . .

Yes you are very right about that. I find the algebra and geometry so much easier now. But a fundamentally shaky foundation to begin with doesn't help.

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18 May 2005, 18:48
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How much Math do you really need to know?

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