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650 Q49/V28-should have been better than that, any advices ?

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by ankit_dhingra7 » Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:33 am
Ron is great.
Hello Ron,

I hope you are doing well! To begin with let me say THANK YOU for such educative posts.. all of your posts are saved in my bookmarks for ready access !!

As i have been going through your posts, i have a few questions and i hope you will help me out; so here we go:

1. you mention that maximum time one should devote to studying in a day should be around 5hrs with 1-2 hrs of complete non brain activity, now i am a working individual having a 13 hrs turnaround time (as in time of commuting + time spent in office + time to return back home) which leaves me with only 4-5 hours of time for personal use; would 2 to 3 hrs of preparation during WEEKDAYS suffice?

2. You further mention in one of the posts that completely analyzing (extracting the last possible bit of information) SC only from OG 12 should easily take couple of months, keeping this in mind, what exactly should be the over all duration of preparation ?? i have my GMAT scheduled for April 2012.

I am eagerly looking forward to your reply! I sent you a PM as well but not sure if you recieved it!

Best Regards,
Ankit

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by lunarpower » Thu Nov 10, 2011 4:35 pm
ankit_dhingra7 wrote:1. you mention that maximum time one should devote to studying in a day should be around 5hrs with 1-2 hrs of complete non brain activity, now i am a working individual having a 13 hrs turnaround time (as in time of commuting + time spent in office + time to return back home) which leaves me with only 4-5 hours of time for personal use; would 2 to 3 hrs of preparation during WEEKDAYS suffice?
2-3 hours every single weekday is still a lot of time.

i think you are misinterpreting my intentions when i talk about "maximum time". in particular, i think that you are thinking that the maximum possible time is the same as the optimum possible time; that's not true.
this figure of 5 hours per day is, in essence, the point after which absolutely no learning will take place at all. however, 5 hours per day, every day, is not a sustainable pace!

if you're going to study 3 hours per day every weekday, you are probably still going to get burned out rather quickly. remember that this is a test of conceptual understanding and reasoning -- not a test of memorization or achievement -- so you have to learn when your mind is in a state that is actually open to learning. you won't really be able to learn if you are fatigued.

with that said, ultimately, the decision is a pretty individual thing. but, if at any point you feel that you are "on autopilot" -- or that you are just putting in hours for the sake of putting in hours, and are not conceptually engaged with the material -- then you should put down the books for the night and go do something else.
2. You further mention in one of the posts that completely analyzing (extracting the last possible bit of information) SC only from OG 12 should easily take couple of months, keeping this in mind, what exactly should be the over all duration of preparation ?? i have my GMAT scheduled for April 2012.
again, a totally individual thing.

for instance, 2 of the 3 components of the verbal section -- CR and RC -- consist of problems for which very little specific preparation is required. (i honestly don't think that any student will benefit from more than a lifetime total of 10-20 hours in CR or in RC; beyond that point, studying is more likely to be detrimental than to be beneficial, as students will increasingly tend to crowd out their own intuition or common sense with "rules" that don't actually work.)
however, those two sections of the test depend heavily on an ability to read, process, and comprehend professionally written english at a rather fast pace. students who can't process that level of english at that pace simply won't be ready to tackle GMAT CR and RC yet; those students will have to take at least a few months off to improve their general level of english reading comprehension and understanding. if these students attempt to tackle GMAT CR and RC with an insufficient level of english proficiency, they will simply be wasting their time (and the problems!)

so, really, it depends on your current level of english proficiency. if you can already read and process the language at a pace close to a native speaker's, then you probably shouldn't need too much time. if you can't, then you'll need some time.

also, you don't have to mine every single piece of information from the OG problems. honestly, if you have a 100% understanding of just five major topics -- meaning, parallelism, pronouns, SV agreement, modifier placement -- then you should be totally fine on 80-90% of GMAT SC problems.
my point in making that statement was two things:
1/ students who claim that they are "done with the OG" are not really done with the OG;
2/ the OG problems are vastly superior to random third-party problems, so students' time would be better spent in that kind of detailed review than in studying problems from unknown sources.
Ron has been teaching various standardized tests for 20 years.

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by AbhiJ » Thu Nov 10, 2011 11:12 pm
lunarpower wrote:
i think you are misinterpreting my intentions when i talk about "maximum time". in particular, i think that you are thinking that the maximum possible time is the same as the optimum possible time; that's not true.
this figure of 5 hours per day is, in essence, the point after which absolutely no learning will take place at all. however, 5 hours per day, every day, is not a sustainable pace!

if you're going to study 3 hours per day every weekday, you are probably still going to get burned out rather quickly. remember that this is a test of conceptual understanding and reasoning -- not a test of memorization or achievement -- so you have to learn when your mind is in a state that is actually open to learning. you won't really be able to learn if you are fatigued.

with that said, ultimately, the decision is a pretty individual thing. but, if at any point you feel that you are "on autopilot" -- or that you are just putting in hours for the sake of putting in hours, and are not conceptually engaged with the material -- then you should put down the books for the night and go do something else.
Awesome Advice, i see innumerable people on GMAT forums, trying to cram their way to a 750.

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by satishchandra » Fri Nov 11, 2011 10:26 pm
lunarpower wrote: those students will have to take at least a few months off to improve their general level of english reading comprehension and understanding.
Hi Ron,
What would you suggest for a person who can not comprehend professionally or stylistically written english at rather fast pace?
How many months a non-native speaker may have to work on improving faster comprehension?
Can you suggest any books for the same?

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by dadesai » Sat Nov 12, 2011 5:25 am
lunarpower wrote:
those students will have to take at least a few months off to improve their general level of english reading comprehension and understanding.
Hi Ron,
What would you suggest for a person who can not comprehend professionally or stylistically written english at rather fast pace?
How many months a non-native speaker may have to work on improving faster comprehension?
Can you suggest any books for the same?
Adding to above questions....

What approach ( or process ) would you suggest to improve general level of english reading comprehension and understanding for non-native speaker? or what would be the best way to do this in your opinion?

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by ankit_dhingra7 » Sun Nov 13, 2011 7:39 am
2 of the 3 components of the verbal section -- CR and RC -- consist of problems for which very little specific preparation is required. (i honestly don't think that any student will benefit from more than a lifetime total of 10-20 hours in CR or in RC; beyond that point, studying is more likely to be detrimental than to be beneficial, as students will increasingly tend to crowd out their own intuition or common sense with "rules" that don't actually work.)
however, those two sections of the test depend heavily on an ability to read, process, and comprehend professionally written english at a rather fast pace. students who can't process that level of english at that pace simply won't be ready to tackle GMAT CR and RC yet; those students will have to take at least a few months off to improve their general level of english reading comprehension and understanding. if these students attempt to tackle GMAT CR and RC with an insufficient level of english proficiency, they will simply be wasting their time (and the problems!)

so, really, it depends on your current level of english proficiency. if you can already read and process the language at a pace close to a native speaker's, then you probably shouldn't need too much time. if you can't, then you'll need some time.

also, you don't have to mine every single piece of information from the OG problems. honestly, if you have a 100% understanding of just five major topics -- meaning, parallelism, pronouns, SV agreement, modifier placement -- then you should be totally fine on 80-90% of GMAT SC problems.
my point in making that statement was two things:
1/ students who claim that they are "done with the OG" are not really done with the OG;
2/ the OG problems are vastly superior to random third-party problems, so students' time would be better spent in that kind of detailed review than in studying problems from unknown sources.
Thanks Ron,
Going by my previous experience, i think i can safely say that comprehension of native level English is not a problem, i believe the major issue which i face is "racing" through the problem and not giving it enough time to extract all information.

i gave MGMAT free test today (only verbal section as i had to rush) and scored 35 on it, given that i am aiming for 730-740 score range (i plan to do PhD, not MBA) i do not know how exactly to decode this score. and what preparation path to devise?!

Further i completely agree with your point on OG; i have OG 10, 12 and the 2 supplements, and going by your numerous posts on the benefit of OG, I think using these 4 books diligently should be enough!!

Thanks
Ankit