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# My situation with verbal. Any advice?

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Intern
Joined: 06 Apr 2019
Posts: 3

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27 Sep 2019, 16:29
1
So I've taken several practice CATs. I have yet to practice the verbal section of the Gmat. A clear pattern I have noticed is that I am seriously struggling in sentence correction.
Take a look at a breakdown of my latest verbal score from MGMAT test.

Critical Reasoning 7/10 correct (most 700-800 level)
Reading Comp (7/12 correct (most 700-800 level)
Sentence Correction (4/14 correct (most 700-800 level)

Total Verbal Sore: 32

Obviously, sentence correction is holding me back. So my question is: Should I focus on sentence correction alone if I am limited in the time I can allocate. I am aiming for a 40 or 41 verbal. Will mastering sentence correction (or at least getting it 70 percent accuracy) be sufficient for a target score of 40+?

Thanks!!
Manager
Joined: 28 Jan 2017
Posts: 162
WE: Consulting (Computer Software)

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28 Sep 2019, 00:49
Hi,

You need to do a lot of work on SC. First try to get accuracy in practice questions and not on CATs. See how much you are getting and see what mistakes you are making in the timed manner. Compare these errors with what you are doing in the CATs and try to avoid the same.

This task has benefited me a lot.
Hope this will work for you too.
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Joined: 29 Jan 2015
Posts: 1484
Location: India
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28 Sep 2019, 01:41
1
Dk107 wrote:
So I've taken several practice CATs. I have yet to practice the verbal section of the Gmat. A clear pattern I have noticed is that I am seriously struggling in sentence correction.
Take a look at a breakdown of my latest verbal score from MGMAT test.

Critical Reasoning 7/10 correct (most 700-800 level)
Reading Comp (7/12 correct (most 700-800 level)
Sentence Correction (4/14 correct (most 700-800 level)

Total Verbal Sore: 32

Obviously, sentence correction is holding me back. So my question is: Should I focus on sentence correction alone if I am limited in the time I can allocate. I am aiming for a 40 or 41 verbal. Will mastering sentence correction (or at least getting it 70 percent accuracy) be sufficient for a target score of 40+?

Thanks!!

Hi Dk107,

You need to perform well on all three sections to score a V40+. While you should certainly pay some attention to SC, I recommend that you also practice the other 2 sections a little to have a better shot at scoring a V40+. Also for Verbal section, try to stick to official resources as much as possible as no other resources can match the nuances of official GMAT questions.

All the best!
SVP
Joined: 23 Feb 2015
Posts: 1670

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28 Sep 2019, 10:15
1
Dk107 wrote:
So I've taken several practice CATs. I have yet to practice the verbal section of the Gmat. A clear pattern I have noticed is that I am seriously struggling in sentence correction.
Take a look at a breakdown of my latest verbal score from MGMAT test.

Critical Reasoning 7/10 correct (most 700-800 level)
Reading Comp (7/12 correct (most 700-800 level)
Sentence Correction (4/14 correct (most 700-800 level)

Total Verbal Sore: 32

Obviously, sentence correction is holding me back. So my question is: Should I focus on sentence correction alone if I am limited in the time I can allocate. I am aiming for a 40 or 41 verbal. Will mastering sentence correction (or at least getting it 70 percent accuracy) be sufficient for a target score of 40+?

Thanks!!

When will you take your exam?
Getting v40 is so tough for most of the people. If you randomly answer 14 questions (it may be anything like SC,CR,RC, DS,and PS) without seeing the question, you'll still get 4 questions correct for sure. So, that means your understanding level on SC is not perfectly fine. You have to study more and more for SC with good materials. Official explanations for SC may not help you to understand the real scenario of SC.
You should study RC and CR simultaneously with SC. You may put 60% time for SC, 20% time for CR and 20% time for RC. It would be good combination of style of study.
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28 Sep 2019, 13:05
1
Hi Dk107,

While the data you presented certainly implies that you need to work on your SC knowledge and skills, there are almost certainly other areas that you ALSO need to work on. As odd as it may sound, how you handle one section of the Exam can influence how you perform on the other sections - so we have to consider more than just this one area in the Verbal section as a means of helping you to get to a V40+.

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? How many hours do you typically study each week?
2) What study materials have you used so far?
3) On what dates did you take EACH of your CATs/mocks and how did you score on EACH (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?

Goals:
4) What is your overall 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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Intern
Joined: 06 Apr 2019
Posts: 3

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28 Sep 2019, 13:45
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi Dk107,

While the data you presented certainly implies that you need to work on your SC knowledge and skills, there are almost certainly other areas that you ALSO need to work on. As odd as it may sound, how you handle one section of the Exam can influence how you perform on the other sections - so we have to consider more than just this one area in the Verbal section as a means of helping you to get to a V40+.

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? How many hours do you typically study each week?
2) What study materials have you used so far?
3) On what dates did you take EACH of your CATs/mocks and how did you score on EACH (including the Quant and Verbal Scaled Scores for EACH)?

Goals:
4) What is your overall 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

Hi, thanks for the response, I hope I am replying the correct way.

1) I have seriously studied for just over a month now. I spend about 8 hours a day at the library, since I was able quit my job in May. I am not burning out, since I study in sprints with breaks, and I'm also doing my MBA work there too. I have not studied verbal at all. I have gotten 32 twice with Veritas and MGMAT not including my diagnostic test. All my efforts have been placed into quant so far.
2) I have the official guides as well as all the MGMAT books.
3) Initially as a diagnostic, I scored a 530 32 quant and 32 verbal. After 3 weeks of serious study, I scored a 36 Quant and 32 Verbal with Veritas. My latest test, I took a couple days ago, and scored 38 Quant 32 Verbal (MGMAT). Its great to see my quant improving. Like I said, I didn't put any time into verbal yet. 32 is my raw score.
4) My Goal is to achieve a 710 or higher in the next 5 weeks. Minimum Quant: 47, Minimum Verbal: 40
5) MY test is scheduled for Nov 12th. However, I am willing to reschedule it as late as December 2nd, if needed.
6) I plan to submit all applications within the first week of December.
7) I am currently in my MBA at Suffolk University in Boston, MA. I am applying to mostly low to mid tier fully funded aacsb accredited PhD programs in Strategic Management across the country. The only two "long shots' are Wharton and Rice University. 14 Applications total, to hedge risk, and get into at least one program.

I know 580 to 710+ in 5-6 weeks can be difficult, however, I feel I can achieve this since I am free for most of each day. A 700 or higher is a must for me to be a competitive applicant for these PhD programs.
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28 Sep 2019, 15:11
1
Hi Dk107,

To start, many GMATers spend 3 months (or more) of consistent study time before they hit their 'peak' scores; you've studied for just 1 month - and while you've made some nice progress in that time, you clearly have a lot more work to do before you can hit your Score Goal. Statistically-speaking, raising a 580 to the point that you can consistently score 710+ will likely require at least another 3 months of consistent, guided study - and you'll have to make significant improvements to how you handle BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. Even with the available study time you have, the goal to hit that Score in just 5-6 weeks is likely too difficult to be considered realistic. This is meant to say that pushing back your planned Test Date (even if it's just by 2-3 weeks) would likely give you a far better chance at hitting your Goal - although it will still be a considerable challenge. Thankfully, the GMAT is a consistent, predictable Exam, so you CAN train to score at a higher level.

In addition, the PhD application process tends to be a bit more 'rigorous' than the traditional MBA application process is - since there tends to be a small group of highly qualified applicants competing for a relatively small number of PhD 'slots.' As such, beyond having a strong GMAT Score, you'll need a strong OVERALL profile and you'll need to properly 'market yourself' to each individual Program that you apply to. By extension, you would likely find it beneficial to speak with an Admissions Expert about your overall profile. There's a Forum full of those Experts here:

1) If you did not score in the 700s by December, would you still apply as planned or would you push back some/all of your applications? Based on your current application deadlines, what is the minimum GMAT Score that you would apply with?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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Intern
Joined: 06 Apr 2019
Posts: 3

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28 Sep 2019, 15:45
EMPOWERgmatRichC wrote:
Hi Dk107,

To start, many GMATers spend 3 months (or more) of consistent study time before they hit their 'peak' scores; you've studied for just 1 month - and while you've made some nice progress in that time, you clearly have a lot more work to do before you can hit your Score Goal. Statistically-speaking, raising a 580 to the point that you can consistently score 710+ will likely require at least another 3 months of consistent, guided study - and you'll have to make significant improvements to how you handle BOTH the Quant and Verbal sections. Even with the available study time you have, the goal to hit that Score in just 5-6 weeks is likely too difficult to be considered realistic. This is meant to say that pushing back your planned Test Date (even if it's just by 2-3 weeks) would likely give you a far better chance at hitting your Goal - although it will still be a considerable challenge. Thankfully, the GMAT is a consistent, predictable Exam, so you CAN train to score at a higher level.

In addition, the PhD application process tends to be a bit more 'rigorous' than the traditional MBA application process is - since there tends to be a small group of highly qualified applicants competing for a relatively small number of PhD 'slots.' As such, beyond having a strong GMAT Score, you'll need a strong OVERALL profile and you'll need to properly 'market yourself' to each individual Program that you apply to. By extension, you would likely find it beneficial to speak with an Admissions Expert about your overall profile. There's a Forum full of those Experts here:

1) If you did not score in the 700s by December, would you still apply as planned or would you push back some/all of your applications? Based on your current application deadlines, what is the minimum GMAT Score that you would apply with?

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich

Hi,

Yes, I agree statistically speaking I know it is very unrealistic. However, I've been known to defy the odds . Since only a few of my schools require a Dec 15 deadline I am willing to extend my training going into Jan. 15 and abandon the schools with dec. 15 deadlines (subsequently pushing back the others). I am ok with that as a last resort. I am also aware that the PhD process is much more rigorous. I am working with my former professors during this process. I also will review the link you provided.
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Status: GMAT Assassin/Co-Founder
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29 Sep 2019, 13:13
Hi Dk107,

The link in my prior post got truncated, so here is the proper link:

I've never asked anyone to study 40+ hours a week - and while it's great that you have the available time to study that much, studying in that type of volume over a long period of time would greatly increase your risk of 'burning out' before Test Day (and that is something that we want to avoid). If you are going to try to study that much, then I suggest that you take one hour "off" for every two hours of study. For example, you could study for 2 hours, then stop for an hour, then study for another 2 hours, then take an hour off, etc.

Given everything that you've described, I think that you would find the EMPOWERgmat 2-Month Study Plan to be quite helpful. Your goal should NOT be to try to 'rush' through any of that material though; your focus has to be on learning and practicing the proper Tactics (and training to hone the proper overall Exam skills) - and that training takes time. We have a variety of free resources on our site (www.empowergmat.com), so you can 'test out' the Course before setting up an Account.

If you have any additional questions, then just let me know.

GMAT assassins aren't born, they're made,
Rich
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01 Oct 2019, 18:22
1
Hi Dk107,

As you already stated, improving from 580 to 710 in a short period of time is a pretty tall order. Thus, I think it would be a good idea to push your GMAT at least to the December date, so you have more time to prepare. Regarding verbal, to improve to V40, you likely need to focus on all aspects of verbal rather than just Sentence Correction. Would you like some general advice on how to improve your verbal or quant skills?

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Re: My situation with verbal. Any advice?   [#permalink] 01 Oct 2019, 18:22
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# My situation with verbal. Any advice?

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