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Struggling with Reading Comprehension

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Joined: 08 Apr 2017
Posts: 20
Schools: Kellogg '21 (D)
Struggling with Reading Comprehension  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Dec 2018, 12:06
I started Empower GMAT verbal course last week and completed the first portion pertaining to Reading Comprehension, I took a practice exam as suggested. I scored a V32 with 13 incorrect answers, 7 in RC, 4 SC, and 2 CR. Below are the questions that I got wrong:

3. CR
6. CR
7. SC
11. SC
14. RC (Purpose)
15. RC (Inference)
16. RC (Which of the following..)
25. SC
27. SC
30. RC (Inference)
34. RC (Purpose)
35. RC (According to the passage..)
36. RC (Inference)

I think I need to put more emphasis on eliminating wrong answers, and advice would be appreciated. Ideally, I would like to get my verbal score over 36. I sit for the GMAT on January 4th with no possibility of pushing back the test. I feel I am very strong in CR and SC, so my primary focus of the next few weeks will be RC. I am in a position where I can commit several hours each day to GMAT prep between now and the exam. Is there any strategies I can implement to minimize the amount of RC I get wrong? Would that improve my verbal score by 4 points?
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Re: Struggling with Reading Comprehension  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Dec 2018, 12:37
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Re: Struggling with Reading Comprehension  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Dec 2018, 13:28
Hi Eric8923,

I’m glad you reached out, and I’m happy to help. Depending on your Reading Comprehension score, it’s possible that an improvement in RC may boost your verbal score by 4 points; however, you may consider working on other aspects of verbal to maximize your score increase. In any case, here is some advice you can follow to improve your Reading Comprehension skills.

To improve in Reading Comprehension, you need to focus on understanding what you are reading. When you are incorrectly answering Reading Comprehension questions, it’s partly because you do not truly understand what you have just read, right? Thus, you likely have to slow down in order to (eventually) speed up. At this point, your best bet is to focus on getting the correct answers to questions, taking as much time as you need to see key details and understand the logic of what you are reading. You have to learn to comprehend what you read, keep it all straight, and use what you are reading to arrive at correct answers. If you don't understand something, go back and read it one sentence at a time, even one word at a time, not moving on until you understand what you have just read. There is no way around this work. Your goal should be to take all the time you need to understand exactly what is being said and arrive at the correct answer. If you can learn to get answers taking your time, you can learn to speed up. Answering questions is like any task: The more times you do it carefully and successfully, the faster you become at doing it carefully and successfully.

Another component of understanding what you are reading is being “present” when reading. Don’t worry about how things are going at work, or what you will eat for dinner, or even how long you are taking to read through the passage. Just focus on what is in front of you, word by word, line by line. Furthermore, try to make reading fun. For example, even if you are reading about a topic that bores you, pretend that you are the person making the argument. By doing so, you will make the passage more relatable to YOU, and ultimately you should be able to read with greater focus.

One final component of Reading Comprehension that may be tripping you up is that RC questions contain one or more trap answers that seem to answer the question but don't really. So, a key part of training to correctly answer RC questions is learning to notice the differences between trap answers and correct answers. You have to learn to see how trap answers seem to follow from what the passages say, but don't really, while correct answers fit what the passages say exactly.

Also, you may find it helpful to read this article about [url=( ... 0-on-gmat/]how to score a 700+ on the GMAT[/url].

If you have any further questions, feel free to reach out.

Good luck!

Scott Woodbury-Stewart

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Re: Struggling with Reading Comprehension   [#permalink] 25 Dec 2018, 13:28
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