The Key to GMAT Timing & Pacing

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The Key to GMAT Timing & Pacing

by heathermilne » Wed Sep 24, 2008 6:29 am
Rather than worry about spending 1.5 minutes per question and calculating the time vs the question you're on to see if you're on track, I've devised this pacing chart:

With 50" remaining -- Be on question 13 (or 12.5)
With 25" remaining -- Be on question 25

With 50" remaining -- Be on question 14
With 25" remaining -- Be on question 28

(Make a chart, write it at the top of your notes page)
Time Q V
50" - #13 14
25" - #25 28

You can obviously subdivide the sections further if need be to keep you on track, but I've found that these two landmarks are a great way to keep you on pace without wasting time nervously looking at the clock constantly.

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by Prasanna » Wed Sep 24, 2008 7:19 am
Good point. I remember doing something like this during my prep. It helped me a lot.
Wish you good luck

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by ILIinNY » Wed Sep 24, 2008 12:35 pm
For the verbal, are you sure about the timing you mentioned?
For the math, this is a fairly reasonable estimation of about 2 minutes per questions. However, on the verbal, based on the question mix you will see until your check point, your timing could change. i.e. if you got more SC questions then RC, you should have more time left.

Any thoughts...

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by testfighter » Fri Jan 01, 2010 6:47 pm
Hi guys... I think a good explanation and free online training tool for pacing is the one @ Leave suggestions! Thanks...

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by rbales » Wed Nov 16, 2011 1:57 pm
This link appears to be broken. Can anyone else access it?
testfighter wrote:Hi guys... I think a good explanation and free online training tool for pacing is the one @ Leave suggestions! Thanks...

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by IJR » Thu Nov 17, 2011 7:27 am
My one concern with this is if you don't meet those milestones, you will get really panicked, which will negatively affect you the rest of the test. In verbal, I would have my grammar rules down very cold so I could do the sentence correction problems in a minute. That will save time for the other two question types. There's no equivalent in Quant, but I would do my best to prevent panic during the test. If you can do that, then these milestones are good to have.

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by trinity22 » Thu Dec 08, 2011 6:51 pm
I agree with IJR. If this is strategy works for you, then fine. But for some it doesn't. In my practice test, I panicked and started guessing in order to make up for my lost time.

So, I started practicing with shorter sets ( 10-20questions, 2 min/ quant question, 1.5 min/SC question) and that has helped me get a good sense of 1.5 min mark and 2 min mark, when to switch gears towards educated guessing etc. A huge part of learning is getting a sense of time and when to drop/pick up strategies.. and all that comes with practice.

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by David@VeritasPrep » Thu Dec 08, 2011 7:52 pm
trinity - What a great point you make. It is crucial for people to have a sense of what 1 minute or 1.5 minutes feels like. On the test you should be looking at the clock all of the time. However, checking 3 times during a section is only enough to confirm that you are moving along or not. If you are REALLY behind there is little that you can do about it anyway by the time you notice it.

On my last exam I was behind in the Quant section. Even at question 25 I was behind. But that is because I had encountered many long questions and had not seen very many Data Sufficiency questions yet. Then they came along around question 28 or so. Several questions in a row that took about 1 minute each.

By the end of the test I was back on track and scored a 49 on the Quant. I would not have done so well if I had altered my style of addressing questions just because I was behind on the clock.

There are many factors that impact where you are in relation to the timing standards mentioned. In fact, being behind on question 25 or so could be a good thing for some people because it could mean that they are methodically getting lots of questions right. I had a student that needed to guess at about the last 8 questions. Why? Because he had so much success with the earlier questions that he was not guessing at any. So he guessed at the last 8 and still earned a 47, a great score for him.

So I would say know yourself and know the test and do what you do- but do it well!
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