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# Strategies to combat careless errors?!

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Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2010, 12:07
Hi all,

I'm working with a student now that is having an issue with making careless calculation mistakes. For instance, he will see 3 + 4, and instead he will multiply these numbers (3 * 4) instead of adding. Or, he will make other simple calculation mistakes. Obviously, this is seriously hurting his score since he's arriving at the incorrect answer.

Has anyone found an effective strategy for preventing these errors?

Thanks!
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2010, 12:13
Punch him in the face everytime you catch it.

On a serious note: repetitive practice is the best to minimize these mistakes. Could have him do basic arithmetic exercises to warm up before doing GMAT quant.
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2010, 12:41
Tell your student to
S
L
O
W

D
O
W
N

I had the same issue. The only way to counter it is to slow down, relax and make sure you are answering the question asked (and not something else)
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2010, 13:30
yeah.. def slow down. and have him repeat out loud the problem too.
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2010, 13:37
I think slowing down is the best advice. That and if he/she consistently does it have them record it each time they do it then do a huge amount of repetition and they should be on the lookout for these "stupid errors".
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2010, 15:23
I would suggest doing the problem and then just reading through them again. Last year, I was taking honors differential equations in college. And this class was a pain in all the wrong places at once. On the final, I needed a 140/150 to get an A in the class and I prepared so hard and got exactly a 140.

But my professor sends me an email saying "Hey. You know, you could have gotten a 150. On one of the multiple choice questions your calculations tell me that 8*3 is 11. I wish sincerely that your high school algebra teacher rests in peace"

*facepalm*

Practice is the only thing that'll help.
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2010, 15:40
1
KUDOS
Expert's post
Also, search is a good technique!
tips-on-timing-and-eliminating-careless-mistakes-83839.html
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2010, 19:43
whiplash2411 wrote:
I would suggest doing the problem and then just reading through them again. Last year, I was taking honors differential equations in college. And this class was a pain in all the wrong places at once. On the final, I needed a 140/150 to get an A in the class and I prepared so hard and got exactly a 140.

But my professor sends me an email saying "Hey. You know, you could have gotten a 150. On one of the multiple choice questions your calculations tell me that 8*3 is 11. I wish sincerely that your high school algebra teacher rests in peace"

*facepalm*

Practice is the only thing that'll help.

you still got A... story wouldve been more impactful if you didn't... diff q was lots of fun fun fun
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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23 Sep 2010, 10:26
careless errors was my big problem (Actually that is why I have 50 instead of 51 in Quant). So, I found 2 ways to combat them:

1. SLOW DOWN. Each question I read slowly and at least 3 times: 2 times at the beginning and 1 just before clicking "submit"
2. Turn your mistakes into red flags. I figured out that often I just skip such keywords as "distinct", "even consecutive" and so on. So, I wrote them down to my "red flags" list. Each time I saw one of the words, I already knew that is a red flag and I have to be careful.
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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23 Sep 2010, 13:11
slow down
retract his work when he's done (especially if it's an easy one)
make sure he attempts problems with a good night's sleep and food in stomach

maybe even try some basic arithmetic problems without a timer. there's plenty of that if you try to search google.

if that doesn't work. punch him in the face. and enroll him back in elementary school
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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23 Sep 2010, 13:46
If I would have been in your place;

I'll provide him the problems where he is facing issues with but off-course with difficulty at low level.

Please don;t hit him that will not make him to do the things in correct way.
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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25 Sep 2010, 10:08
onedayill wrote:
If I would have been in your place;

I'll provide him the problems where he is facing issues with but off-course with difficulty at low level.

Please don;t hit him that will not make him to do the things in correct way.

Advise him to talk silently (may talk loudly during prepartation) to himself. I found this useful for me. "Hey, dude what is 3 times 4, times!- means multiply, dude..."
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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25 Sep 2010, 10:36
I am making many mistakes in easier questions. I seem to multiply only partially.
5(2x+1)=> 10x+1

Hopefully, I can fix it by following some of the tips here.
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Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?! [#permalink]

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03 Oct 2010, 06:47
slow down. i had the same problem and it was what i later found out to be 'math anxiety'...
Re: Strategies to combat careless errors?!   [#permalink] 03 Oct 2010, 06:47
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# Strategies to combat careless errors?!

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