Review: Veritas Prep’s Statistics and Combinatorics Book

by on December 10th, 2013

Book Title: Statistics and Combinatorics
ISBN: 978-1-936240-20-3
Edition: 3rd, © 2013 by Veritas Prep, LLC.
Authors: Brian Galvin and Chris Kane
Price: $25.00 USD
ELITE GMAT PREPARATION by Veritas Prep

Overview

The Veritas Prep Elite GMAT Preparation Statistics and Combinatorics Book is a new paperback GMAT Math guide that was published in late 2013. At the time of publication of this article, the book is available for general purchase online through Amazon. As the title suggests, this particular book focuses on tested concepts related to Statistics, Combinatorics and Probability only.

I knew that I would be getting this book for about a month before it was shipped out to me. However, I did not receive a shipping notice from FedEx when the package was sent out, and so I was surprised when the FedEx deliveryman showed up at my house with a package that I had to sign for :) .

Package

The package that I received from Veritas Prep containing the new Statistics and Combinatorics book.

This book is designed using the same esthetics as the other 12 Veritas Prep books found in the Complete GMAT Course: a dark blue background with the Veritas Prep insignia, with bold white text. This book is not numbered, as it is meant to be sold individually, separate from the other books in the series, but it is an exact duplicate of Book 10, “Statstics and Combinatorics”, from the 12-book Complete GMAT Course. The major addition is 68 pages of solutions explanations for the practice problems presented earlier in the book. When you receive the book, it is wrapped in plastic:

Books

The format of the book utilizes the same Veritas Prep approach to teaching: Skillbuilder – Lessons (Statistics, Combinatorics, Probability) – “You Oughta Know” – Homework – Solutions

I really like the way that the Skillbuilder section allows students to slowly get acquainted with the concepts that will be covered in the rest of the lessons. In the Skillbuilder section, content is gradually introduced to the student through short summaries and straightforward drill questions, and then the answers and explanations are provided immediately afterwards. Some of the explanations may be too brief or simplistic for those who are just getting used to the concepts again—it is necessary to ask a friend, or do a quick search online for a solution that will make sense to you. I find that it is also helpful to go on the Beat The GMAT dedicated forums where Veritas Prep experts are active participants in various GMAT strategy discussions.

Pros

  • This is a self-study book which brings the expertise of Veritas Prep instructors within your reach, at a reasonable price range
  • The content in the book is exactly as a Live On Demand or In Class student would have access to, but in addition you will get detailed explanations for each of the questions asked in the book
  • Perfect for someone who needs a refresher on Statistics, Combinatorics and Probability all in one place—these are some of the hardest question types on the GMAT

Cons

  • Unable to gauge your initial skill level before starting the book and cater your learning to your specific needs
  • No (mention of) access to free practice tests offered by Veritas Prep

Conclusion

If you are someone who struggles with Statistics, Combinatorics and Probability, this is a great book which will explain the concepts in a straightforward manner. There are 27 questions covered in the “Lesson” portion of the book and an additional 80 questions in the “Homework” portion, so you will have ample opportunities to practice! Once you have attempted the questions, the detailed explanations will allow you to verify and consolidate the knowledge that you have learned from the lessons and practice questions. Overall, the book is very easy to understand and follow. One suggestion I would have for the next edition of the book is to include a timeline of a study plan for learning these concepts and completing the practice problems. Despite this being a self-directed study guide, it would be helpful to have some general guidelines for how to pace your studying to maximize the usage of time spent on preparing for the test.

Rating: 9/10

Read more book reviews in the Beat The GMAT Book Recommendations section.

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