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# Review of Barron's 1100 Words You Need to Know

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Review of Barron's 1100 Words You Need to Know [#permalink]

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10 Aug 2013, 10:54
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Basic Description
Barron’s 1100 Words You Need to Know is a 400-plus page book designed to increase your vocabulary. Lessons are divided into 48 weeks, with each week consisting of four daily lessons and one review day. Each lesson contains fill-in-the blank and matching questions. The paperback version has a list price of USD $13.99 and can be purchased for USD$10.88 on Amazon.

The book’s approach to defining words is unique. Instead of providing definitions first, a paragraph is presented and the reader has to figure out (or at least get a feel for) the italicized vocabulary words. Review exercises immediately follow to reinforce the material and definitions are provided at the end of the daily lesson.

Pros
1. Learning Method – Lessons are fast-paced and more engaging than memorizing a standard word list. The unique method of introducing new words also provides a different way of learning.
2. Affordability – The price is reasonable, especially considering the amount of material and physical quality of the book.

Cons
1. Not GRE-specific- Though there is considerable overlap with GRE vocabulary, this book does not specifically cater to that test.
2. Difficulty Level – There are too many simple words found in the word list and terms are vaguely defined at times. This can leave the reader with a superficial understanding of some of the vocabulary.

Closing Remarks
1100 Words You Need to Know serves as a great start to your GRE preparation. While the book probably contains too many simple words and can feel a bit easy at times, there’s still enough new vocabulary and practice exercises to justify a purchase. More study material is needed for an adequate study plan, however, so supplement this resource with flashcards, books and news periodicals, GRE-specific guidebooks, and websites such as wordnik or dynamo.
Review of Barron's 1100 Words You Need to Know   [#permalink] 10 Aug 2013, 10:54
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