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Plz Help - Absolutely NO improvements in RC

This topic has 4 member replies
Natashangmat Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts Default Avatar
16 Jun 2008
16 messages

Plz Help - Absolutely NO improvements in RC

Post Wed Aug 06, 2008 11:09 am
Elapsed Time: 00:00
    I am totally fed-up and broken! I have tried every possible solution but it looks like my Reading comprehension is NEVER going to improve...

    Here is my situation in RC -

    1- If I read the full passage and then try to answer (with multiple lookups and referring back to passages again and again!) -- my accuracy is around 85% BUT this takes hell lot of time....On an average I am taking around 3 minutes to answer every single question!

    2- If I just skim thru the passage or try to run over it quickly without paying much attention to the details in passage -- my accuracy is around 50% BUT still I take around 2 minutes on an avegare to answer eveyr single question with this strategy

    I know BOTH 1 and 2 are un-acceptable......

    My QUESTION --- Is there anyone on this forum that is facing exactly the same issue with RC? If Yes, what appraoch are they following (or followed) to improve their RC .....AND.....frankly speaking....were there ANY improvements whatsoever u did/do?

    Any help will b much appreciated!

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    malolakrupa Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts Default Avatar
    18 Jul 2008
    58 messages
    2 times
    Post Thu Aug 07, 2008 1:33 pm
    swati.sug Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts Default Avatar
    04 Jun 2008
    104 messages
    6 times
    Post Wed Aug 20, 2008 11:48 am
    Where are you practicing RC from.

    Are you using Kaplan Premiere Or Princeton material.
    If yes then try to use their drills which are timed.

    For your first Point :
    I ordered a book called "How to read better and Faster" by Norman Lewis,though I was not able to work with the book(I plan to work with it now),I learnt one important point....that is "URGENCY".We take a lot of time to read because we are casual readers in normal life.We read casually to pass our time or to learn or enjoy something.This is the reason that we cannot read fast and comprehend well at the same time.
    A. Practice reading RC's with a sense of urgency.
    Read urgently and make quick mental notes about why is the writer writing this? There will be many times when 1st few lines wont make sense to you.Do not go again to read them.Just continue to read and the purpose will become clear.Keep on reading for author's purpose.And you will hit it.
    Then the meaning of other things will become clear as well.
    The conclusion and the premises will become clear.

    Other point is you take 3 minutes to solve a problem.Again I feel that this happens when we give each choice a lot of time and read them again and again .You need to identify the contenders(can be the answer) and the losers(outright wrong choices).Make a point to cancel losers out on ABCDE which you have on your notepad. Most of the times there will be only two contenders.Quickly brainstorm and move ahead.

    2)I will not suggest you to skim over the passage.Read the whole passage quickly making a mental map.But do not read it multiple times.
    Read the questions and come back to passage later.

    anshul265 Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts Default Avatar
    31 Jan 2008
    71 messages
    2 times
    Post Sat Aug 23, 2008 2:39 pm

    EXACT same problem here. Not that I have improved alot but few things that did help me were reading the Manhattan reading comprehension guide. There is no need to buy it because i can give you the jist of all chapters.

    Basically you have to make notes. Now now !! making notes doesnt mean re-writing the entire passage again, it means ... writing 2-3 key here and there such as ... "study in 90s, however results... etc etc ... "
    and most importantly .. trying to determine , how each sentence fits wrt the passage and whats its relation to the previous statment

    This approach helped me immensely. In the beginning using this approach used to take me 15-18 mins to finish a passage but now it takes me 8-10 mins to finish a passage and I can usually get 60-70% of the questions right as opposed to 20-30% before.

    Hope tihs helps.

    newera Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts Default Avatar
    18 Jun 2008
    82 messages
    10 times
    Test Date:
    September 2008
    Target GMAT Score:
    Post Mon Aug 25, 2008 9:27 pm
    I feel you! I feel like this is one of the hardest sections to improve.

    I also bought the MGMAT book on RC and found that it helped.

    Basically, read the first paragraph entirely, then write down the main topic of each paragraph and skim the remaining paragraphs for key words...your notes shouldn't be more than 5 lines max...

    So you want it to look something like:

    1) Main idea ---
    Key points
    2) Main idea
    Key points
    etc etc

    The first paragraph will usually answer the first question...which is general and asks about main idea of passage. The next couple of questions will ask for more detailed answers. Usually, you can pinpoint where you can find the answer from looking at your notes. So if something related to paragraph 2 main idea, go to paragraph 2 then take your time reading.

    You don't want to spend more than 2.5 minutes making notes. And you don't want to spend more than 1.5 minutes for each detailed question. Main idea questions you'll be able to answer in 30 seconds as your notes will help immensely.

    The key is to be an active reader...and one way of achieving this is by taking notes on paper. Again, each line is a couple of words.

    Good luck to both of us!!

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