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Intern
Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 42
Location: New Jersey
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20 Jul 2006, 07:38
I figured I would start a GMAT study blog for others to learn from my triumphs and failures (and maybe help me out along the way!).

My first study goal is to get through every kaplan book (math, verbal, regular, 800) twice and then review the trouble problems that I mark on the second go around. After that I would like to get through the official guide at least once (probably twice for the verbal), get through all of the gmat club challenge questions, and take at least 8-10 practice tests (kaplan, pp, arco gold...). This seems to be the recommended gmat club strategy, right?

Here is what I have done so far:
- Answered all Kaplan Math workbook problems
- Answered all Kaplan Math problems from the regular Kaplan book
- Answered all Kaplan Math workbook problems for a second time, marking every problem that I either got wrong or had some trouble with (around 80+ problems).

I believe I have improved a great deal with the problem solving questions, but I find the data sufficiency problems to be very challenging. Does anyone have any insight on how to master these?

What I have on tap for the rest of the week (7-20 to 7-23):
- Answer all Kaplan math problems from the regular Kaplan book for a second time, marking all of the trouble problems
- Work on Kaplan Verbal workbook problems

I'll write another blog entry next week...

Feel free to chime in and share your own GMAT strategies or throw in some pointers for me/us.
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Affiliations: HHonors Diamond, BGS Honor Society
Joined: 05 Apr 2006
Posts: 5926
Schools: Chicago (Booth) - Class of 2009
GMAT 1: 730 Q45 V45
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20 Jul 2006, 15:25
Re:

Quote:
My first study goal is to get through every kaplan book (math, verbal, regular, 800) twice and then review the trouble problems that I mark on the second go around. After that I would like to get through the official guide at least once (probably twice for the verbal), get through all of the gmat club challenge questions, and take at least 8-10 practice tests (kaplan, pp, arco gold...). This seems to be the recommended gmat club strategy, right?

Going through all these books twice seems like a ridiculous amount of work. The OG guide along is 800 questions, doing that twice, assuming you take no more than 2 minutes per question, would take 50 hours of work. Realistically though, with questions that stump you, breaks, reviewing material, checking your wrong answers, its probably closer to 100 hours, just for the OG.

My advice: Don't worry about doing Kaplan twice... (in fact, I'd even go so far as to say, do the OG twice and then if you still feel you need work, do the Kaplan stuff).

The problem with your approach, besides what appears to be the common mistake of "I'm going to do it all!!!" - is that you are putting Kaplan in front of the OG. The OG is just that, Official. Why put a mediocre at best Kaplan book ahead of the real deal? By doing this you risk burning out before you get to the actual OG questions...

I say move to the OG and THEN come back to Kaplan, if you need to. I think you'll find that if you do the OG twice, you wont have to.
Intern
Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 42
Location: New Jersey
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New blog with a couple questions... [#permalink]

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24 Jul 2006, 06:07
Thank you for the advice of mainly using the official guide, but I have tried that in the past (all be it a weak attempt) and this time around I want to do things differently. Kaplan's questions are VERY similar to that of the real gmat and are a little more complicated than the official guide problems. Don't get me wrong I will use the official guide, especially for the verbal section, but I need extra help with the math.

It's the start of a new week today and (real) work looks brutal, but I will fit in some gmat study time. This week I am hoping to complete the Kaplan Verbal as well as the Kaplan 800 math section.

I also signed up for Manhattan GMAT's practice test for Mid August. It is free and probably used as a marketing tool to beef up their client base, but I figured it can't hurt, can it? Has anyone taken one of these mock tests?

I am looking for some opinions on something. When do you believe is the right time to start taking practice tests? I know some people say to take 1 a week until the test, while others say wait until the end and then take several a week. My gut feeling is to start taking 1 a week starting in mid August and then maybe ramp up to 2-3 in the first week of September. Then as the test comes I would slow down to 1-2 a week with light review to try to recuperate from hard studying. Any suggestions???

THANKS ALL!!!
New blog with a couple questions...   [#permalink] 24 Jul 2006, 06:07
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