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# Knowing concepts but can't break +650 bracket

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Joined: 25 Mar 2018
Posts: 4
Knowing concepts but can't break +650 bracket  [#permalink]

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02 Aug 2018, 00:16
Hi

Fairly new to the forum, but have been around for a while reading and prepping for my GMAT.

So basically I feel like I am not progressing in the way I want, and feel stuck with mainly 2 things in the quant section.

1) Careless misstakes/wierd misstakes. When I do practice tests with exactly the conditions I will get on real GMAT test day, I tend to do mistakes on fairly easy questions (300-650), and I can ask myself: What the hell was I thinking here? - This is so easy. I have absolutly no time management problems. I spend approximatly around ~2 minutes on every question (+/-, 30 sec- 1 min on questions I am sure/unsure on), and almost always ending the quant section perfectly on time. But when I review the test I can boomed like 1-4 500-600 level questions because I just forgot interpret/comprehend 1 minor detail in the question steem.
- Any ideas/tips for how I can train and tell my brain to be aware and improve this kind of silly things? I think this is holding my practice tests scores down from my target.

2) I am pretty confident with concepts. I feel like I am very good at memorizing formulas and concepts, they get attached to my brain after I learn it once, but having issues applying them on problems. Basically it is the same here, when I review a practice test I usually re-read the question and try to think which concept to use, but on some questions (pretty easy questions sometimes) I just cant know which concept to apply so I take a small look in the answer explanation, to give me a hint, and then, I exactly know which concept to use and I can solve the problem in < 1 min. I feel like, if I just straight ahead knew which concept to apply, I could break all the +650 questions pretty easy because I know which concept to use on them and even on the +700 questions. Bottomline, Can I do any training for just being better/faster on applying concepts?

Greatful for any kind of advice, thoughts or opinions on my situation,

OverNout
examPAL Representative
Joined: 07 Dec 2017
Posts: 841
Re: Knowing concepts but can't break +650 bracket  [#permalink]

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02 Aug 2018, 00:43
Hey TMARTENSSON,

Sounds like you've hit the 'plateau'!
The 'plateau' is what we call that phase when you've done your studying and know the material but seem to have stopped improving - you just keep making the same mistakes and keep missing the same types of questions. So how do you break through this glass ceiling?

Usually, the answer isn't more fine-tuning, it is an adaptation of strategy.
For example, you say you know the concepts but don't know which to apply. This suggests that you are focused in on what we call the 'Precise' solution approach - trying to fully solve a question by applying the correct mathematical rules / equations / concepts. Oftentimes, this is the wrong way to go! If you can reach the correct answer without actually solving the question (for example, by eliminating impossible answers) then there is no need for you to be able to pick out the 'right concept'.

As another example, you mention that you tend to make silly mistakes. Do you use simple numbers to verify your calculations or your logic? Making an abstract problem concrete with examples can make it much easier to avoid falling into logical traps. This is an example of what we call the 'Alternative' approach.

So: in addition to fine-tuning your current approaches (for example by working more carefully, writing clearly, reviewing errors, etc.) I suggest you consider a shift in strategy - is there a completely different way to answer questions that you've so far missed? Feel free to PM me if you'd like more info or check out our Intro to PAL video here, which explains different strategic approaches in depth.
_________________
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Status: It's near - I can see.
Joined: 13 Apr 2013
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Location: India
Concentration: International Business, Operations
GMAT 1: 480 Q38 V22
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Re: Knowing concepts but can't break +650 bracket  [#permalink]

### Show Tags

02 Aug 2018, 09:42
TMARTENSSON wrote:
Hi

Fairly new to the forum, but have been around for a while reading and prepping for my GMAT.

So basically I feel like I am not progressing in the way I want, and feel stuck with mainly 2 things in the quant section.

1) Careless misstakes/wierd misstakes. When I do practice tests with exactly the conditions I will get on real GMAT test day, I tend to do mistakes on fairly easy questions (300-650), and I can ask myself: What the hell was I thinking here? - This is so easy. I have absolutly no time management problems. I spend approximatly around ~2 minutes on every question (+/-, 30 sec- 1 min on questions I am sure/unsure on), and almost always ending the quant section perfectly on time. But when I review the test I can boomed like 1-4 500-600 level questions because I just forgot interpret/comprehend 1 minor detail in the question steem.
- Any ideas/tips for how I can train and tell my brain to be aware and improve this kind of silly things? I think this is holding my practice tests scores down from my target.

2) I am pretty confident with concepts. I feel like I am very good at memorizing formulas and concepts, they get attached to my brain after I learn it once, but having issues applying them on problems. Basically it is the same here, when I review a practice test I usually re-read the question and try to think which concept to use, but on some questions (pretty easy questions sometimes) I just cant know which concept to apply so I take a small look in the answer explanation, to give me a hint, and then, I exactly know which concept to use and I can solve the problem in < 1 min. I feel like, if I just straight ahead knew which concept to apply, I could break all the +650 questions pretty easy because I know which concept to use on them and even on the +700 questions. Bottomline, Can I do any training for just being better/faster on applying concepts?

Greatful for any kind of advice, thoughts or opinions on my situation,

OverNout

Hi,

1. https://blog.targettestprep.com/how-to- ... -on-gmat/#

2. https://www.veritasprep.com/blog/tag/qu ... -wisdom-2/

Knowing mere concepts is not suffice to crack GMAT.

Learn all - What you read.

Remember all - What you have learnt.

Implement all properly - What you have remember.

Akshdeep
_________________

"Do not watch clock; Do what it does. KEEP GOING."

EMPOWERgmat Instructor
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Affiliations: EMPOWERgmat
Joined: 19 Dec 2014
Posts: 13087
Location: United States (CA)
GMAT 1: 800 Q51 V49
GRE 1: Q170 V170
Re: Knowing concepts but can't break +650 bracket  [#permalink]

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02 Aug 2018, 12:04
Hi TMARTENSSON,

Little mistakes tend to occur because of a lack of note-taking (or disorganized note-taking), so the first thing to consider is how often you're doing work 'in your head.' This might be a result of how you've been studying and/or the study materials you've been using. 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 (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?

Goals:
4) What is your goal score?
5) When are you planning to take the GMAT?
6) When are you planning to apply to Business School?
7) What Schools are you planning to apply to?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Re: Knowing concepts but can't break +650 bracket &nbs [#permalink] 02 Aug 2018, 12:04
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# Knowing concepts but can't break +650 bracket

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