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Is it worth to memorize idioms?

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Is it worth to memorize idioms?  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Mar 2016, 12:07
Hi all,

I'm struggling a little bit with the Verbal section, specifically with Sentence Correction questions (I´m getting right around 60-70% of the questions).

I don't feel confident when doing this type of questions; hesitating, rereading and lack of strategy could define what I feel when tackling sets of around 10 questions.

In mock tests I'm getting around V30-31.

Is it worth to memorize idioms at this stage of preparation or should I invest that time in improving sentence correction techniques?

My plan is to do the real test in May
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Re: Is it worth to memorize idioms?  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Mar 2016, 14:54
50groszy wrote:
Hi all,

I'm struggling a little bit with the Verbal section, specifically with Sentence Correction questions (I´m getting right around 60-70% of the questions).

I don't feel confident when doing this type of questions; hesitating, rereading and lack of strategy could define what I feel when tackling sets of around 10 questions.

In mock tests I'm getting around V30-31.

Is it worth to memorize idioms at this stage of preparation or should I invest that time in improving sentence correction techniques?

My plan is to do the real test in May

Dear 50groszy,
I'm happy to respond. :-)

Yes, Idioms are one important part of the SC questions. Here's a free set of GMAT Idiom flashcards:
https://gmat.magoosh.com/flashcards/idioms
If you drill these regularly and learn all these idioms, you will be well prepared for that aspect of the SC questions.

Here's a blog that will help you with all Verbal questions:
How to Improve your GMAT Verbal Score

Also, I will recommend Magoosh. We have a full library of SC lesson video. Here's one:
Substantive Clauses
Here's a practice question:
The Equal Protection Clause
When you submit your answer, the following page will have a video explanation of the question. Each Magoosh question has its own VE, and that immediate feedback is what accelerates the learning process. This could really help you if you a struggling with GMAT CR.

Please let me know if you have any questions! Best of luck!

Mike :-)
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Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep


Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. — William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)
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Re: Is it worth to memorize idioms?  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Mar 2016, 09:12
50groszy wrote:
Hi all,

I'm struggling a little bit with the Verbal section, specifically with Sentence Correction questions (I´m getting right around 60-70% of the questions).

I don't feel confident when doing this type of questions; hesitating, rereading and lack of strategy could define what I feel when tackling sets of around 10 questions.

In mock tests I'm getting around V30-31.

Is it worth to memorize idioms at this stage of preparation or should I invest that time in improving sentence correction techniques?

My plan is to do the real test in May

Hi! You might want to go thru the following blog by GMAC, specifically addressing the role of idioms in Sentence Correction in GMAT: http://www.mba.com/india/the-gmat-blog-hub/the-official-gmat-blog/2011/sep/idioms-sentence-correction-and-the-gmat-exam.aspx.

Of particular relevance is the following sentence in the blog: The end result is a GMAT exam that doesn’t test simply a person’s ability to memorize grammatical rules or recognize idioms for their colloquial meanings but a test that rewards reasoning regardless of the test takers background.

Given this direction, I believe that you are very unlikely to be given two options where the "only" difference between the options is the idiomatic usage. In recent OGs, I can think of very few questions (except OG13, #30 and #82) which test idiomatic usage alone. I believe these are remnants of old questions and will be phased out. Having said that, the usage of idioms is so common in English language that it might not be possible for GMAT to completely get away with them.

To strike a balance, we have gone through almost all official sources available and prepared a list of 20-30 most commonly used idioms ("estimated to be, considered, regard as etc. ), along with examples of each of these idioms, in our book EducationAisle Sentence Correction Nirvana .

If someone is interested, PM me your email-id, I can mail the corresponding section.
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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: Is it worth to memorize idioms?  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Mar 2016, 09:27
Many thanks for your answers,

What EducationAisle says sounds logic for me. I think I'll try to learn by hard the most common idioms (I think the ones appearing in the Manhattan Foundations of Verbal guide could be a good source) and focus in learning the logic and grammar rules of SC in general.

I think the time I could spend on memorizing long list of idioms is better used if I just focus in improving my understanding of effective writting.

I don't see the point of testing pure lists of idioms in an exam that aims to prepare you for a business school
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Re: Is it worth to memorize idioms?  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Mar 2016, 20:10
50groszy wrote:
I don't see the point of testing pure lists of idioms in an exam that aims to prepare you for a business school
That's not what the GMAT really tests (it's more a test of logical ability than anything else), so it's good to see that you're not planning to spend too much time going through lists. But at the same time, don't go in thinking that what you're doing now is preparing you for bschool.
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Re: Is it worth to memorize idioms?  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Mar 2016, 12:58
5
50groszy wrote:
Many thanks for your answers,

What EducationAisle says sounds logic for me. I think I'll try to learn by hard the most common idioms (I think the ones appearing in the Manhattan Foundations of Verbal guide could be a good source) and focus in learning the logic and grammar rules of SC in general.

I think the time I could spend on memorizing long list of idioms is better used if I just focus in improving my understanding of effective writting.

I don't see the point of testing pure lists of idioms in an exam that aims to prepare you for a business school

Dear 50groszy,
I'm happy to respond. :-) I see that AjiteshArun already gave a good response, but I want to give a more lengthy response.

I have a few things to say to you, my friend.

First of all, think about why the GMAT has SC at all. We live in a modern world in which many folks get to know each other through writing. Right now, you and I are getting to know each other through writing. Once you have your MBA and are in the business world, you will make new contacts all the time through your writing: new customers, new suppliers, new partners, new advertisers, new lawyers, new competitors, etc. etc. In the business world, people are always looking for indications of "should I trust this person I don't know?" Furthermore, psychologists have documented in great deal the powerful impact of first impressions. If our first impression of someone is relatively low, then it would be 10x to 20x harder for that person to make any kind of positive impression on us. If our first impression is low, then we are inclined to be critical. If our first impression is high, we are inclined to be accepting and forgiving. That's just how the brain is wired. Now, if you were making your first impression to someone in the business world, think about how your opening email or web comment would sound if it contains idiom mistakes. ("My company is able for helping you to . . . ", "Our software will prevent your system to crash at any time." ) In that second example, the idiom mistake almost sounds as if the person is saying the opposite of what he actually was trying to say! Not knowing idioms can distort or change the meaning of what you are trying to communicate, and this can cost you sales and valuable business contacts. The GMAT tests idioms precisely because not knowing them can cost you money when you are in the business world!!

Another thing I will say is as follows. I don't know you, so I don't know your GMAT ambitions. Perhaps you would be perfectly happy with a mediocre GMAT score. But if you aspire to a 700+ score, if you aspire to GMAT excellence, then it would well behoove you to embrace the habits of excellence. Part of the habits of excellence is not taking anything for granted, not assuming that anything is of little importance. Any energy you spend criticizing the GMAT's priorities is energy you are not spending on achieving excellence. Excellence is all about jumping in and doing the hard word even if the "point" is not immediately clear to you: work first and ask questions later! Excellence is all about not allowing yourself any concocted intellectual excuse to prevent you from doing the hard work of achieving mastery. Idioms appear on approximately 1/3 of all GMAT SC question: that's way too big a region to write off! If you start playing the game of "If I do X, then I can't do Y," that's a scarcity game. That's a guaranteed route to a mediocre score. The attitude of excellence involves finding the time and the energy and the motivation to do both X and Y. The mindset of excellence is a "both ... and" worldview, not an "either ... or" worldview. Few people can muster all the stamina and courage to live out the habits of excellence consistently. That's one reason that so many people fall short of 700 even when they have the best prep material at their disposal.

My friend, I am extremely ambitious for you. I want to support your success in any way I can. :-)

I hope you find these reflections helpful! Please let me know if you have any questions.
Mike :-)
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Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. — William Butler Yeats (1865 – 1939)
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