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# Veritas Prep Blog

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Veritas Prep Representative
Joined: 21 Jan 2010
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Veritas Prep Representative
Joined: 21 Jan 2010
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Veritas Prep Representative
Joined: 21 Jan 2010
Posts: 99
Own Kudos [?]: 655 [0]
Given Kudos: 2
Veritas Prep Representative
Joined: 21 Jan 2010
Posts: 99
Own Kudos [?]: 655 [0]
Given Kudos: 2
GMAT Tip of the Week: No Calculator? No Problem. [#permalink]
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When Not to Use Parallelism on the GMAT [#permalink]
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 FROM Veritas Prep Blog: When Not to Use Parallelism on the GMAT We know that we are often tested on parallelism on the GMAT. The logically parallel entities should be grammatically parallel. But today, we need to talk about circumstances where you might be tempted to employ parallelism but it would be incorrect to do so.For example, look at this sentence:A New York City ordinance of 1897 regulated the use of bicycles, mandated a maximum speed of eight miles an hour, required cyclists to keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebars at all times, and granted pedestrians right-of-way.Is everything ok here? Well, it certainly seems so. We have four elements in parallel:regulated …mandated …required …granted …But actually, there is a problem in this sentence:‘regulated…’ will not be parallel to the rest of the three elements. The rest of the three elements will be in parallel.Before we explain why, let’s take a simpler example:The girl sitting next to me wears blue everyday, eats only waffles, and listens to music in office.The sentence will not be ‘The girl sits next to me…’ because ‘sit’ is not parallel to other verbs. “sit” modifies the girl and is not used as a verb here. It is a present participle modifier modifying ‘girl’. It specifies the girl about whom we are talking.Similarly, in the original sentence, ‘regulate’ is modifying ‘ordinance of 1897’. It is telling you which ordinance of 1897.The other verbs ‘mandated’, ‘required’ and ‘granted’ are used as verbs and are parallel. They are assimilated under ‘regulate’. They tell you how the ordinance regulated.How did it regulate?mandated …required …granted …Hence, you cannot use ‘regulated’ here. You must use ‘regulating’  – the present participle modifier to modify the ordinance. So you have to think logically – are the items in the given list actually parallel? Are they equal elements? If yes, then they need to be grammatically parallel too; else not.Here is the complete official question:Question: A New York City ordinance of 1897 regulated the use of bicycles, mandated a maximum speed of eight miles an hour, required of cyclists to keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebars at all times, and it granted pedestrians right-of-way.(A) regulated the use of bicycles, mandated a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, required of cyclists to keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebars at alltimes, and it granted(B) regulated the use of bicycles, mandated a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, required cyclists to keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebars at alltimes, granting(C) regulating the use of bicycles mandated a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, required cyclists that they keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebarsat all times, and it granted(D) regulating the use of bicycles, mandating a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, requiring of cyclists that they keep feet on pedals and hands onhandlebars at all times, and granted(E) regulating the use of bicycles mandated a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, required cyclists to keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebars at alltimes, and grantedSolution:From our above discussion, we know that we have choose one of (C), and (E).(A), (B) and (D) put regulate parallel to the other verbs.Still, let’s point out all the errors of these options:(A) regulated the use of bicycles, mandated a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, required of cyclists to keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebars at alltimes, and it grantedParallelism problem – regulated cannot be parallel to mandated and other verbs. Also, ‘mandated’ is not parallel to ‘it granted’. Besides, ‘required of X to do Y’ is unidiomatic.(B) regulated the use of bicycles, mandated a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, required cyclists to keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebars at alltimes, grantingParallelism problem – ‘regulated’ is parallel to ‘mandated’ though it should not be.‘granting’ is not parallel to ‘mandated’ and ‘required’ though it needs to be parallel.You also need an ‘and’ before the last element of the list ‘and granted …’(D) regulating the use of bicycles, mandating a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, requiring of cyclists that they keep feet on pedals and hands onhandlebars at all times, and grantedThis is not a valid sentence because the main clause does not have a verb. ‘regulating…’, ‘mandating…’ and ‘requiring…’ are the present participle modifiers.‘granted…’ is not parallel to the other elements. Besides, ‘requiring of X that they do Y’ is unidiomatic.Now let’s look at the leftover options:(C) regulating the use of bicycles mandated a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, required cyclists that they keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebarsat all times, and it granted‘it granted’ is not parallel to the other verbs. Besides, ‘required X that they do Y’ is unidiomatic.(E) regulating the use of bicycles mandated a maximum speed of eight miles anhour, required cyclists to keep feet on pedals and hands on handlebars at alltimes, and grantedPerfect! All issues sorted out!Answer (E)Karishma, a Computer Engineer with a keen interest in alternative Mathematical approaches, has mentored students in the continents of Asia, Europe and North America. She teaches the GMAT for Veritas Prep and regularly participates in content development projects such as this blog!
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7 Tips on Planning a Successful College Visit [#permalink]
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Veritas Prep Representative
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Given Kudos: 2
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Veritas Prep Representative
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99th Percentile GMAT Score or Bust! Lesson 4: Think Like a Lawyer on C [#permalink]
 FROM Veritas Prep Blog: 99th Percentile GMAT Score or Bust! Lesson 4: Think Like a Lawyer on Critical Reasoning Veritas Prep’s Ravi Sreerama is the #1-ranked GMAT instructor in the world (by GMATClub) and a fixture in the new Veritas Prep Live Online format as well as in Los Angeles-area classrooms.  He’s beloved by his students for the philosophy “99th percentile or bust!”, a signal that all students can score in the elusive 99th percentile with the proper techniques and preparation.   In this “9 for 99th” video series, Ravi shares some of his favorite strategies to efficiently conquer the GMAT and enter that 99th percentile. Lesson Four: Think Like a Lawyer.  Your natural inclination is to just click “I agree” to the iTunes Terms & Conditions, but to lawyers each word in that agreement is carefully chosen to build a case.  Thankfully, on the GMAT the Critical Reasoning problems you see will be 99% shorter than those Terms & Conditions, but you’ll need to train yourself to think like a lawyer and notice how carefully chosen those words in the prompt are.  In this video, Ravi will demonstrate how his law degree has helped him become a master of GMAT Critical Reasoning, and how you can summon your inner Elle Woods (or Johnnie Cochran) to conquer CR, too.Are you studying for the GMAT? We have free online GMAT seminars running all the time. And, be sure to find us on Facebook and Google+, and follow us on Twitter!Want to learn more from Ravi? He’s taking his show on the road for one-week Immersion Courses in San Francisco and New York this summer, and teaches frequently in our new Live Online classroom.By Brian Galvin
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SAT Tip of the Week: Breaking Down the New SAT [#permalink]
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7 Ways To Ease the Transition to College [#permalink]
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GMAT Tip of the Week: Making the Most of Your Mental Stamina [#permalink]
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Important Caveat on Joint Variation GMAT Questions [#permalink]
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 FROM Veritas Prep Blog: Important Caveat on Joint Variation GMAT Questions Before we start today’s discussion, recall a previous post on joint variation. A question arose some days back on the applicability of this concept. This official question was the case in point:Question: In a certain business, production index p is directly proportional to efficiency index e, which is in turn directly proportional to investment i. What is p if i = 70?Statement I: e = 0.5 whenever i = 60Statement II: p = 2.0 whenever i = 50This was the issue that was raised:If one were to follow the method given in the post on one would arrive at this solution:p/e = k (a constant)e/i = m (another constant)Hence, p*i/e = n is the joint variation expression(where k, m and n are constants)So we get that p is inversely proportional to i, that is, p*i = ConstantStatement II gives us the values of p and i which can help us get the value of the Constant.2*50 = ConstantThe question asks us the value of p given the value of i = 70. If Constant = 100,p = 100/70.But actually, this is wrong and the value that you get for p in this question is different.The question is “why is it wrong?”Valid question, right? It certainly seems like a joint variation scenario – relation between three variables. Then why does’t it work in this case?The takeaway from this question is very important and before you proceed, we would like you to think about it on your own for a while and then proceed to the the rest of the discussion.Here is how this question is actually done:Taking one statement at a time:“production index p is directly proportional to efficiency index e,”implies p = ke (k is the constant of proportionality)“e is in turn directly proportional to investment i”implies e = mi (m is the constant of proportionality. Note here that we haven’t taken the constant of proportionality as k since the constant above and this constant could be different)Then, p = kmi (km is the constant of proportionality here. It doesn’t matter that we depict it using two variables. It is still just a number)Here, p seems to be directly proportional to i!So if you have i and need p, you either need this constant directly (as you can find from statement II) or you need both k and m (statement I only gives you m).So the issue now is that is p inversely proportional to i or is it directly proportional to i?Review the joint variation post – In it we discussed that joint variation gives you the relation between 2 quantities keeping the third (or more) constant.p will vary inversely with i if and only if e is kept constant.Think of it this way: if p increases, e increases. But we need to keep e constant, we will have to decrease i to decrease e back to original value. So an increase in p leads to a decrease in i to keep e constant.But if we don’t have to keep e constant, an increase in p will lead to an increase in e which will increase i.It is all about the sequence of increases/decreasesHere, we are not given that e needs to be kept constant. So we will not use the joint variation approach.Note how the independent question is framed in the joint variation post:The rate of a certain chemical reaction is directly proportional to the square of the concentration of chemical M present and inversely proportional to the concentration of chemical N present. If the concentration of chemical N is increased by 100 percent, which of the following is closest to the percent change in the concentration of chemical M required to keep the reaction rate unchanged?You need relation between N and M when reaction rate is constant.You are given no such constraint here. So an increase in p leads to an increase in e which in turn, increases i.So let’s complete the solution to our original question:p = kee = mip = kmiStatement I: e = 0.5 whenever i = 600.5 = m * 60m = 0.5/60We do not know k so we cannot find p given i and m.This statement alone is not sufficient.Statement II: p = 2.0 whenever i = 502 = km * 50km = 1/25If i = 70, p = (1/25)*70 = 14/5This statement alone is sufficient.Answer (B)Karishma, a Computer Engineer with a keen interest in alternative Mathematical approaches, has mentored students in the continents of Asia, Europe and North America. She teaches the GMAT for Veritas Prep and regularly participates in content development projects such as this blog!
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Dos and Don’ts of Breaks, Snacks, and Everything In Between [#permalink]
 FROM Veritas Prep Blog: Dos and Don’ts of Breaks, Snacks, and Everything In Between I love snacks and breaks as much as every other student does, but (like every other student!) I’ve let snacking and frequent breaks get in the way of my studying plenty of times.I was a serial procrastinator in high school. However, in college, I had such a heavy workload I was finally forced to improve my study habits.Here are a few of the things I learned that, hopefully, you will adopt!Know how easy it is to overeat while studying. When you’re focused on studying, it’s easy to accidentally consume the entire jar of M&M’s when you only meant to have a couple handfuls. Odds are, you won’t even have properly enjoyed those M&M’s, since you were thinking about misplaced modifiers and acute angles—you’ll only really feel the extra calories and the food coma. Portion your snacks wisely, and keep anything you don’t plan on eating far out of arm’s reach.Set your break schedule before you sit down to work. Unless you plan ahead, it’s easy to accidentally take too many breaks since there’s nothing to hold you accountable. Remember: It’s a slippery slide from short I-feel-like-I-need-it-right-now breaks to full-on procrastination.Take breaks regularly, but not too regularly. Too few breaks can result in poorer productivity during work time, but too many breaks can leave you with too little time to get everything done. I’ve heard countless break schedule recommendations, from 10 minutes for every 90 worked to 30 minutes for every 30 worked. Optimal break schedules vary from person to person, and from situation to situation. During summertime, for instance, I usually work best with 20 minutes of break for every hour and a half worked, but during the school year I’m able to focus for two or three full hours before needing some time off. Use trial and error to get a feel for the schedule that your body and brain like best, and stick to it.Snacks as a reward. Instead of snacking or taking breaks whenever you feel like it, consider using snacks and breaks as rewards for productive study. Take a 10-minute break for every hour of productive study, or eat a grape each time you finish 3 practice problems. You’ll have something to look forward to, and you’ll appreciate your snacks and breaks more.Choose healthy, easy-to-eat snacks. Fatty, sugary, and carb-heavy foods can worsen your focus and reduce your study endurance, and it’s hard to pay attention to an SAT passage while hand-rolling a do-it-yourself sushi platter or avoiding spilling spaghetti sauce on your white shirt.Have you been putting off your college application? We can help! Visit our College Admissions website and fill out our FREE College profile evaluation!Courtney Tran is a student at UC Berkeley, studying Political Economy and Rhetoric. In high school, she was named a National Merit Finalist and National AP Scholar, and she represented her district two years in a row in Public Forum Debate at the National Forensics League National Tournament.
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Veritas Prep Representative
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