|All Reviews > Mimster's Reviews|
This review is based on my jump from 550 (Q37, V28) to 660 (Q47, V34).
When I first started with empower, I knew my Quant is stupid. I completely threw all my quantitative knowledge away and what empower did was bring them back. Rich has a great way of engaging the audience and I loved that aspect so much. The podcasts were really helpful in shaping my mindset towards how to approach questions. The way the course was structured helped me apply what I learnt in the course to what I will see in the exam. The solutions were easy to follow and anyone who strictly follow Rich's quant teaching can definitely hit a Q47. The only complain I have for the quant part is the heavy reliance of formula memorization for the rate x time questions. I'm not a big fan of remembering things because I'm very forgetful.
I am quite disappointed by empower's teaching for verbal. I think the verbal portion for Empower would benefit natives more than non-native speakers. The course lacks explanation on why certain GMAT rules are that way. However, I do feel that the boil it down method for critical reasoning was very helpful for practicing. However, when you do GMAT in the exam... you will never get the chance to boil down... it's just way too slow. The RC portion of the course also helped me with GMAT. Previously, I used to just read the text several times and answer the GMAT but after using Empower I realized that you need to take it slow. Without that advice I would have never been good at RC.
If there was a rating for this section for GMAT courses I would throw a 10 out of 5 for EmpowerGMAT. These guys are the best for both Verbal and Quant. (Though I could also debate that Mathrevolution top them for Quant strategies). The way they structured triage and let you know what kind of questions to drop... man that was a life savior in the exam. For those who are anxious ducks like me, EMPOWER will tell you exactly how to calm the duck down so that you will not ruin your chance for a great score. You've gotta train yourself to master GMAT. There is no other way unless you are the top top top top test takers.
The awesome part about Empower is the triage strategy. Sometime in the exam room you will face questions that will make you want to scream and run out of the room, however with triage you will be able to eliminate them quite easily and move on to questions you know you can solve.
My first verbal score was at 27 and my second verbal score was at 34. I started using e-gmat after I achieved my second score. The course helped me understand the foundation concepts of sentence correction and critical reasoning. I didn't take the RC portion of the verbal prep solely because I wasn't bothered at all. My scores were quite rocky for verbal but at the end it shine through because I kept reviewing the solutions on scholaranium. I would say that 70% of my jump from V32 to V42 can be attributed to e-GMAT's teaching.
Sentence correction videos of e-GMAT are a gem. When I first tackled GMAT, I just went solely by ear. I didn't have any guidelines or proper understanding of what GMAT wants. e-GMAT helped me understand those guidelines and adopt a logical approach to solving sentence correction questions. The one thing I might add about e-GMAT is even though its approach is logical and accurate, the process was quite slow. I had to come up with my own pacing and strategies in order to make sure I won't run over the clock.
The critical reasoning portion, despite other reviews saying it's not as good as sentence correction, I think it's one of the best. I am not a native speaker and so my brain does not process English logic that well. It took quite some time for me to wrap my head around the usage of logical cues in GMAT and e-GMAT taught me exactly those words. I love how each section of the videos would highlight out word cues, especially for bold face. In order to make the best about of my e-GMAT experience, I listed out all the cue words given by e-GMAT and map them out myself on an A4 so I can look at critical reasoning holistically. Every type of questions has some sort of link with each other. Without e-GMAT i think I would have not hit a 97%-tile on the critical reasoning portion.
I would totally recommend e-GMAT for people, non-native in particular, who just started studying GMAT. This is a great way to gain understanding of what GMAT tests you. However, if you want to score higher than 38, you need to do your own legwork and a lot of practices.
MATHREVOLUTION IS AWESOME. Hands down one of the most intuitive test prep company dedicated for quant. Without MR I would never have been able to consistently stabilize my quant score at Q49 in TWO EXAMS. I think that's crazy. Before I was always hovering around 44 - 47 in my mocks.
MR is good for both beginners and advanced learners of math. However, it is good to have a foundation on basic arithmetic first before you go down with math revolution.
What MR did greatly was taught me how to analyze the GMAT questions, breaking them down to pieces and chunks. This allowed me to tackle the question in such a way that reduced the amount of mistakes I had committed earlier. The ivy approach and the variable approach allowed me to do questions in less than a minute (the ones I already know would pop up). This has been a huge time saver for me.
The one thing that got me recommending math revolution to everyone is the dedicated section on how GMAT quant traps you. No other test prep does this! This allowed me to have intelligent guesses on questions I have no clue of how to do and avoid really stupid mistakes.