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REVIEWING READING COMPREHENSION PROBLEMS

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REVIEWING READING COMPREHENSION PROBLEMS  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jul 2018, 09:45
Hello, everyone.

I wanted to know about the various ways people review RC questions.

For example, I've established a pretty good error log for SC and CR problems.

An incorrect SC question usually has a note such as
    1. "prefer ... compared to" is redundant
    2. "missed modifier error"
    3. "missed meaning change", etc.
    4. "spent too little time, didn't figure out the core sentence; incomprehensible"

Similarly, a CR question upon review gives me insights of things I missed:
    1. "did not completely understand the option"
    2. "assumed that X will lead to Y"
I have not been able to establish (and maybe hence improve) RC questions. One of the barriers is the size of the passage. Usually, with SC and CR questions, I copy the whole question (which has a real learning) and put it into a PPT. I can't really incorporate an RC passage (because I know I won't re-read the passage, etc.)

So, I'm just seeking the opinion of all you amazing people (including experts such as mikemcgarry, egmat, @GMATNinja) as to how to properly review RC questions.

Any feedback will be appreciated.

PS: I couldn't really find any threads which talked about this, hence the post.
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Re: REVIEWING READING COMPREHENSION PROBLEMS  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Jul 2018, 14:15
1
Hi sandman13,

I've written a bit about reviewing RCs here: https://gmatclub.com/forum/how-to-revie ... l#p2062152

Let me know if you find any of this useful!

Thanks, Jennifer
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New post 16 Jul 2018, 11:29
Hi jennpt
Good to hear from you. I went through the post you mentioned. I think you raise a couple of interesting points which I'll incorporate into my RC strategy.

More specifically,
1. Do you have any advice for tacking RCs which are heavy in technical jargon? I tend to get hung up on those which breaks the flow of my reading (and hence comprehension). I end up taking more times and making more mistakes.

2. I've noticed that I get general idea questions correct, but struggle with inference questions a bit (especially inference + EXCEPT). Any advice on how to tackle those?

Thanks.
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New post 16 Jul 2018, 13:45
Hi sandman13,

I don't know if you'll like this advice, but my usual prescription for discomfort in reading technical stuff is ... to read more technical stuff. What kind of jargon trips you up - is it the hard science topics like biochemistry or astrophysics? For those, some daily reading from a website like Science News could start to help you feel more comfortable. Look for topics you know nothing about and dive in. Most of my students report that after 5 days of reading 1 or 2 hard science articles per day, those topics start to seem easier and more readable to them.

For your question about inference EXCEPT, I might best understand what's going wrong if you can link to one or two examples of questions you got wrong, and explain your reasoning -> how did you choose your answer, and why did you eliminate the credited (correct) answer?

Thanks!

Best, Jennifer
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Re: REVIEWING READING COMPREHENSION PROBLEMS  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jul 2018, 11:42
Hi jennpt,

One of the simpler examples is present here: https://gmatclub.com/forum/japanese-swords-194239.html
I share this RC example because this was a topic I really liked and read with a lot of enthusiasm. I got all questions correct except the second question.

Quote:
2. Each of the following is mentioned in the passage EXCEPT
(A) Every Japanese sword has a unique structure that can be traced back to a special forging
process.
(B) Master smiths kept their forging techniques secret.
(C) The Japanese sword was considered by some to have a spiritual quality.
(D) Master smiths are now considered artists by most major historians.
(E) The Japanese sword is considered both a work of art and a historical artifact.


I chose choice A. I cannot really trace why I jumped at the option. I guess one of the reasons could be that it's not explicitly stated, but can be easily inferred.

Relevant text (IMO):
Quote:
It was common, though optional, for a master smith to place a physical Signature on a blade; in addition, every master smith had a "structural signature" due to his own secret forging process.


So, any advice on how I can avoid making mistakes on EXCEPT questions would be valuable.

Thanks again.
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New post 19 Jul 2018, 02:10
Hi sandman13

Thanks for sharing this example. Why did you eliminate D?

(When reviewing incorrect RC questions, I like to ask: What was wrong with my answer choice and why/how did I not see that at the time? Why did I eliminate the correct answer choice? Because Verbal questions are always a matter of process of elimination, we need the answers to both questions to help understand what went wrong and how you can correct for that in the future.)
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New post 19 Jul 2018, 02:47
jennpt, I eliminated D in the example I shared because of this part of the text:

Quote:
This effort made each blade as unique as the samurai who wielded it; today the Japanese sword is recognized as much for its artistic merit as for its historical significance.


I drew a real-world inference and presumed that the sword makers are now considered artists.

In hindsight, I realize the mistake, but I seem to make such mistakes more often on EXCEPT questions. Let me know what you think.
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New post 19 Jul 2018, 12:57
Hi sandman13

In D, we can support the inference that the sword makers could be considered artists. What we cannot support is "by most major historians." Who knows anything about what most major historians think?? The passage never mentions "major historians."

In RC questions, make sure you read all the way to end of each answer choice - and be sure you can agree with all the words. Question writers love to start off answer choices with words or concepts from the passage but then add on random words at the end that change the meaning and make the answer out of scope.

With EXCEPT questions, I wonder if you might be making more mistakes because you are getting a bit impatient with the question, and therefore you're not reading every answer choice with the full sharp focus that you need to identify how the writers are making one answer choice incorrect. Could that have anything to do with it?

When I see an EXCEPT question, I say to myself, "I'm going to have to do more work on this question. I need to find 4 answer choices that DO answer the question, and the one remaining option, regardless of what it is, will be my correct answer choice."

Let me know if this sounds relevant for you.

Best, Jennifer
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Personal 99th percentile score (770). Based in Berlin and previously in Paris, ich spreche auch deutsch/je parle aussi français.
With five years' experience, I am expert in coaching non-native speakers to outstanding performance.

Visit my University Tutor profile

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Re: REVIEWING READING COMPREHENSION PROBLEMS  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Aug 2018, 10:27
Hi jennpt

I recently gave the GMAT and scored 710 (Q49, V37).
I've shared my ESR and prep details here: https://gmatclub.com/forum/esr-analysis ... l#p2105220

I'm planning to retake the GMAT. Your advice on what the strategy going forward should be would be greatly appreciated.

I struggle a lot with business-related RCs. I wanted your advice on how I could prepare myself for such RCs.

Should I read business articles? If yes, what sources would you recommend?
Should I rework business RCs in OG (which I've already completed)?
etc.

Hoping to get valuable feedback as always from you. Thanks in advance.

Regards,
sandman13
Re: REVIEWING READING COMPREHENSION PROBLEMS &nbs [#permalink] 02 Aug 2018, 10:27
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