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What do the experts think of Manhattan's recommendation?

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Joined: 05 Aug 2019
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Location: United States (TX)
Concentration: General Management, Strategy
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What do the experts think of Manhattan's recommendation?  [#permalink]

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12 Nov 2019, 23:10
As I am a mere 11 days away from the official test, every night after hours of reviewing material, I can't help but read up on any other last minute strategy from the experts and those who have gone down this road and scored highly on the GMAT. Granted I've been preparing for over 6 months, there is not a whole lot I read that surprises me. However, today I read somewhere that Manhattan recommends that test takers plan on skipping 3-4 question on each section (V,Q, and IR) and I am very eager for some expert opinion on this strategy.

I have been scoring Q45-Q47 and V38-V42 (680-720), right where I want to be, completing all the questions in practice CATs. However, I do think if I were to consciously skip those 3-4 very difficult questions or question types involving permutation or combination that I know I'm not very good at, specially in the middle or toward the tail end of the test, it might in fact help me. I am not trying to score a Q49+ or V44+ and I have noticed on CATs in which I scored in the V38 to 44 range, I am getting 5-7 questions wrong without the whole score plummeting to a 50 percentile or something as astronomical. Same on Quant, last time I scored a Q45, I got 11 questions wrong, the time before I scored a Q47 on an official CAT, I got 7 questions wrong.

Do you all think I might be better of taking Manhattan's recommendation and planning on skipping 3-4 questions on each section and saving 7-9 minutes, the impact of which can be huge or should I keep fighting to get through all the questions as I have been on practice CATs.

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Re: What do the experts think of Manhattan's recommendation?  [#permalink]

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14 Nov 2019, 20:33
Hi ChiTexan2015,

I’m glad you reached out, and I’m happy to help. Honestly, you need to be really careful about blindly guessing on or skipping questions in order to pick up time during the exam because if you have too quick of a “trigger finger,” before you even realize it, you’ll have guessed on 5+ questions, and then what will happen to your score, right? Thus, consider taking a more organic approach to solving GMAT questions. In other words, your goal should be to correctly answer as many questions as you can (all the while keeping an eye on the clock).

For example, with quant, to know when to give up on a question, you need to trust your instincts and follow your internal clock. Let’s say you are 2 minutes into a question, but you know that you are on the right path; in that case, you’d want to keep going even if it would take you 3 minutes to answer, right? After all, if you have fully mastered GMAT quant, then you should be in a position to answer some questions in 30 seconds, and thus it’s OK to spend more than 2 minutes on certain problems. On the other hand, say you are 60 or 90 seconds into a problem, and you know that you are going down a rabbit hole and likely will not be able to correctly answer the question. In that case, take an educated guess and keep things moving.

My overall point is, yes, it’s OK to guess, but ensure that you take a strategic approach to how and when you guess, OK? Also, since you have been hitting your score goal on practice exams, I really don’t recommend changing things up at the last minute. What you have been doing has been working for you, so stick with it.
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Re: What do the experts think of Manhattan's recommendation?   [#permalink] 14 Nov 2019, 20:33
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