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Using (and Misusing) GMAT Practice Tests

Among the many myths that abound regarding optimal preparation for the GMAT, one of the more common and, unfortunately, more harmful ones is that there exists a direct relationship between quantity of practice tests taken and score improvements. And, unfortunately, this myth is perpetuated by large GMAT classes that will advertise 6 or 8 or…

GMAT Quantitative Errors: Understanding Incorrect Answers

When most people miss a GMAT quant question, the ensuing chain of events tends to be some version of the following: refer to the answer explanation, make sure they understand the explanation, re-do the question, and move on to the next question. Though such an approach certainly benefits test-takers whose only issue is conceptual, it…

Using the LSAT for GMAT Practice: User Beware

As an independent tutor, I pride myself in taking unorthodox approaches to meet my clients’ needs. Sometimes, this requires creativity in how I teach a concept, how I structure a lesson, or how I assign homework to my students. A good GMAT tutor will target your specific needs, and if that requires breaking from convention, then…

Pigeonholing GMAT Questions

This post is inspired by a recent student of mine who was able to improve from a 480 on his diagnostic to a 660 on the real GMAT. He was great at categorizing GMAT questions, but he really started seeing a jump after he took the below advice to heart. If you spend enough time…

How to Study for the GMAT: Fooled by Randomness

Because of the unique nature of the GMAT, many test-takers find that their progress hits a plateau about a month or two into their preparation. This fact isn’t a denunciation of the student’s ability or their study materials, but, more often than not, a consequence of how these students prepare for the exam. If you’re…

GMAT Verbal: Can You Really Improve Your Critical Reasoning?

Conventional GMAT wisdom suggests that you should spend the majority of your time preparing for the Quantitative section. The reasoning behind this claim is largely valid: The Quantitative section tests mathematical reasoning in a highly nuanced way, and before you can even begin to learn and recognize these nuances, you need to brush up on…

GMAT Timing Tip: The Sunk Cost Fallacy

When students call me to discuss issues they’ve been having in their preparation, one of the most common concerns I hear is timing. Be it on practice tests or on the real thing, basically all GMAT test-takers experience a time crunch at some point during the test, if not throughout the entire exam. Now, if…

GMAT Anxiety: Your Worst Enemy or Your Best Ally

Everyone who takes the GMAT suffers from at least some anxiety. I’ve taken it three times and scored 760+ each time, but even at my last sitting, I remember feeling that rush of adrenaline and nerves as the test started. In the back of your mind, you will always wonder whether they will suddenly throw…

GMAT Calculations: Avoid the Dirty Work!

If you’ve been studying for the GMAT, you’ve inevitably found yourself in a situation where you were thinking “If only I had a calculator!” Many of my students express this sentiment, especially when doing weird digits questions or when forced to evaluate seemingly impossible percentages or fractions. I’m going to say here what I tell…

Meaning Issues in Sentence Correction

If you’ve been following the GMAT forums, you’ve probably come to learn that GMAC (the creators of the GMAT) recently announced that many of the Sentence Correction questions on the exam are trending away from Idiom and toward Meaning. Hearing of this news, many people studying for the exam have recently called me in a…
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