Posted on
05
Jul 2022

Overcoming Focus Issues on the GMAT

We are sure that there have been occasions when you were ready to study but found yourself thinking about everything else besides what you were supposed to do. Lack of focus is a common problem that each of us has to face and find a way to deal with. GMAT is an examination that requires a lot of concentration as you have to shift from one topic to another for 3 and half hours. Maintaining your focus is not a suggestion but a necessity while preparing for and taking the exam. In this article, we are going to look at some useful tips on how to deal with the lack of focus for the GMAT.

Set Proper Studying Environment

Most of us have a preferred studying environment that is tailored to our needs and requirements and ensures personal comfort. For some of us, this may be studying on the bed with the music on and snacks, and for others, studying in a group with friends at a cafe. However, on exam day, you won’t have these “luxuries.” Instead you will be required to sit at a bare desk for more than 3 hours. Not having your conveniences may affect your concentration negatively and consequently, deteriorate your GMAT performance. 

One way to avoid this is to prepare yourself at home for the exam in similar conditions to the ones on the exam day itself. For example, instead of studying on your bed, choose a chair and table set up. You should also try to minimize your distractions as much as possible- turn off the music, leave your phone away, don’t let people come into the room where you are studying, etc. The more similar your studying environment is to the exam environment, the higher your chances are to be focused and work well when taking the GMAT exam.

Create Your Personalized Study Plan for GMAT Preparation

The key to a successful GMAT performance is efficient preparation, which follows a well-organized study plan with clear timetables and goals. If you plan to take the GMAT, start your preparation by creating a study plan. You may use an online planner tool or even better, talk with a professional who can help you to develop a study strategy for your prep schedule.  

Having a GMAT prep schedule can also help you on the exam day itself. Once you have it, you can put time limits for each section of the exam and determine whether it takes you too long to finish a particular question or section. This could be a sign that you aren’t focused on the exam and that you have to quickly overcome the distractions. If you learn the signs of being distracted, you can practice overcoming your lack of focus on the GMAT. 

Set Up a Routine

Besides having a study plan or prep schedule, you may want to consider creating a day-to-day schedule or routine and organizing your tasks. Sometimes it can be overwhelming to balance between work, studying for the GMAT, social life, and all other responsibilities. This often leads to an irregular schedule of studying, which works against the quality of study time. Your body follows a biological clock, meaning your mind functions best or to its full capacity at particular periods of the day. If you don’t set certain times to study, you can often find yourself more easily distracted and lose your focus for the GMAT by thinking of everything else you have to do during the day.

If you want to utilize your time effectively and study better, create a routine, organize your tasks, and give yourself time to relax. You have to devote a sufficient amount of time for your preparation, separate from your personal or professional commitments’ time. Importantly, you should also give yourself time to rest and procrastinate freely so as not to lose your sanity while preparing for GMAT. Go for a walk, take a nap or watch your favorite series. 

Additional Tip 

Study in bursts. Don’t force yourself to study for 4 hours straight. This won’t be a productive learning session as you and your brain have a limit to how much new knowledge you can handle. Instead, try dividing your study time into 20-25 min chunks, interspersed with 5 min breaks. When you are engaged with intense mental activities such as studying or preparing for the GMAT exam, it is critical to take breaks. This method can help you stay focused since you know that the next break is just around the corner, so you have to get motivated, roll up your sleeves and finish your task.

Conclusion

Preparing for and taking the GMAT exam is a challenging endeavor and maintaining your focus is an essential requirement for success. You should find your own ways to stay focused and create a study plan that is suitable for you and your needs. Here at Apex, we are more than happy to support you on your GMAT journey and assist you in every step of the process. You can sign-up for a 30-minute complimentary consultation call with one of our instructors who can help you develop your personalized GMAT prep schedule!

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GMAT How to Prepare
Posted on
15
Feb 2022

How To Prepare For The GMAT – Best Practices

1. Introducing the GMAT

When beginning your GMAT journey, the first step you need to do is figure out why you are taking the GMAT and what your future MBA goals are. If you are hoping to attend a top-tier Business School, like Harvard, this will make your GMAT preparation different compared to a goal of attending a part-time, online MBA program. Keep in mind that effort will still need to be given no matter which program you decide to apply to. Regardless of your ultimate goal, it is important to have your final goal in mind before laying out your GMAT preparation plan. So, once you have established why you are taking the exam, next is creating a plan of how to prepare for the GMAT.

2. Know the GMAT inside and out

One of the first things you want to do is to get comfortable with the GMAT exam and its structures. The GMAT is split up into four sections: 

  1. Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) → to measure your critical thinking and communication skills
  2. Integrated Reasoning → to measure your data analysis skills
  3. Quantitative Reasoning → to measure your ability to draw conclusions from present data
  4. Verbal Reasoning → to measure your reading, evaluation, and correction skills in standard English 

By splitting up the GMAT into its four main sections, you can begin your preparation process more fluidly. Recognize your strengths and weaknesses in each of these sections and dedicate yourself to strengthening your weaknesses and solidifying your strengths. In order to know where you stand with the GMAT, we always suggest taking a practice exam before beginning to prepare. This will give you a baseline knowledge of where you stand with each section of the exam. 

3. Lay out a 3-month GMAT study plan

GMAT 3 Month Study PlanIdeally, you give yourself 3-months to study for the exam. We have created a 3-month study plan which can be used by most test-takers when beginning their GMAT journey. Ultimately, giving yourself 3-months means you have room to get to know every aspect of the exam. Give yourself less than 3-months and you will be hindering your chances of success. We suggest finding the date of your GMAT exam (giving yourself an extra week or two for a retake – just in case) and counting backwards by 3 months. Then, mark your calendar in the following way: 

During your study plan, it is important that you make time for stress relief. Do not let the GMAT preparation process consume you. Being stressed will do you no favors in the long run and could even negatively impact your overall GMAT score

4. It’s okay to ask for help

Believe it or not, we expect successful GMAT test takers to have asked for help during their journey. Whether it is from their friends or family or even hiring a private GMAT tutor, many people who achieve a 700+ GMAT score do so because they have had some sort of help. Even asking a previous GMAT test taker how to prepare for the GMAT can be a huge help! A private GMAT tutor, for example, can help you achieve GMAT success by working with you in a myriad of ways.

Whether it is by helping you to strengthen your weaknesses or fortifying your strengths, a good GMAT tutor will be able to recognize where you need help and how best to help you. Make sure that, if you need help you don’t wait until the last minute to ask for it. Be ready to ask for help as soon as you begin your studies. 

5. Be confident and remember your goal

It is common practice for people who take the GMAT to question their rationale for undertaking such a journey. The GMAT is not supposed to be an easy exam (if it was easy, then everyone would do it!). But you are one of those select few who choose to go down this difficult path. We suggest surrounding yourself with a strong support network. Stress reduction is also hugely important during this journey, be careful not to get burned out too soon as this can ultimately hinder your GMAT exam process. 

Final Thoughts

We here at Apex know the difficulty of figuring out how to prepare for the GMAT exam. We work with clients from a variety of different backgrounds and tutor them to GMAT success. Whether you are about to begin your GMAT journey or are already two months in, we are in the business of helping anyone who wants to achieve an elite GMAT score. We offer 30-minute complimentary consultation calls with one of our top-scoring instructors. 

 

Contributor: Dana Coggio

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One-on-One GMAT Tutor
Posted on
08
Feb 2022

One on One GMAT Tutoring – Clients’ Perspective

For many people self-prepping for the GMAT for months on end leads to middling results. This can be discouraging and frustrating. Oftentimes, people preparing for the GMAT do not consider using a one-on-one GMAT tutor until it’s too late. Seeing improvement in your self-prep skills and score, when studying with a private GMAT tutor a few weeks before the exam, can be even more frustrating because you realize all the time previously wasted. 

The right time to seek out a One-on-One GMAT tutor 

Before we get into the ‘whys’ of seeking the help of a GMAT expert, it is important to note the ‘when’, as in when is the right time to seek one out

The earlier you seek help, the greater impact it will have when trying to reach your goals.

Even for those unfamiliar with the test or who need a refresher on their basic mathematics, enlisting a tutor to help structure that review and tie it into a larger preparation agenda will save you time in the long run and headaches along the way. Seeking the advice of an experienced tutor on how to get started is integral to setting you on the right GMAT preparation path.

One-on-one GMAT tutors have years of experience with the test and know the GMAT inside and out. They will be able to pinpoint where you are struggling and how to overcome these pain points in the most efficient and beneficial way possible. 

How does the teacher’s experience add to their ability to pinpoint and add efficiency?

A seasoned GMAT tutor has seen hundreds of clients and experienced every possible difficulty with the exam. Beginning your preparation by struggling with the GMAT for the first time is going to be far less efficient than availing yourself to the experience and expertise of someone who has done it many times before. An analogy to this point is learning how to swim. If you wanted to learn to swim, you might just jump into the lake, but wouldn’t you learn faster, with fewer mistakes and less danger, by finding a friend who knows how to swim? Even better, wouldn’t you try to find your friend who was on the swim team, or was a lifeguard? It’s not that someone can’t learn to swim or succeed on the GMAT on their own, but there are many pitfalls along the way.

Apex GMAT offers a complimentary consultation call and an assessment session at a discounted rate for exactly this purpose. Start prepping for the GMAT on the right foot and you will be thankful that you avoided all the wasted effort and time at the beginning. 

Why seek the assistance of a One-on-One GMAT tutor?

Here is what some Apex clients had to say about working with a one on one GMAT tutors which will give insight into how they can really be the difference between an ok GMAT score and an exceptional one:

Alex N: “My tutor helped me learn how to think about the problems, not just how to solve them. This meant that any problem put in front of me could be solved if I just used the appropriate approach.”

Justin: “Finding the underlying questions hidden within the actual question was an invaluable skill that I learnt from my instructor. It helped me think about what the question was really asking me to solve. This made me more time efficient and more accurate.” 

Amy: “Having someone to ask you pivot questions and help you reframe your approach to tackling each question was something that I was not doing in self-prep and really helped me achieve a big jump in my score. I left my sessions with a more strategic outlook on the test.”

Alex L: “My tutor showed me how to use multiple solution paths and find the right one for me for each question type. With my toolbox equipped with these solution paths I was able to tackle anything that the test threw at me, even questions that were framed in a way that I hadn’t seen before.” 

Olga: “I learnt how to self prep for success, I set up the way I approached my self prep differently and also used the skills that I learnt in the sessions to help me during my own preparation time. This helped me test my understanding of the concepts that I had learnt during sessions and practice them more. I really had to let go of old habits and adapt to new ones which was challenging at first but with the guidance and encouragement that I received from my tutor, it was well worth it in the end.” 

Antione: “The lessons were tailored to me and my style of learning. Every lesson was focused on helping me with my specific needs and I could tell that my tutor put a lot of time into planning for each session to ensure that I would be challenged and successful within it and outside of it.”

Chloe: “My tutor was willing to spend more than an hour on the phone with me, trying to get to know me so that he could give me the best responses to my questions as well as prepare our lessons in a way that would be most beneficial to my learning style and ultimate success.” 

Kyle: “My tutor not only helped me achieve a great GMAT score and a place at my top MBA program but also just prepared me for what to expect at business school in general.  After months of self-prepping without much progress, I know that I would not be in business school or getting through my lessons as successfully if I had not had this one-on-one GMAT tutoring experience.” 

Amanda: “I was really confident with my math skills going into the first test but I did not do as well as I thought I would and so working with my tutor really helped me brush up on all my skills and shine on my next test day. He was able to help me unlock my true potential and this helped boost my confidence for the test day. With a full time job, having a one on one GMAT tutor really helped me work on exactly what I needed for success without having to spend extra time on skills that I was already good at.” 

Finally, a really important aspect to consider is this: Are all one-on-one GMAT tutors created equal?

The answer to this is NO! Shop around before choosing the tutor that you think will be a good fit for your learning style, goals, and budget. Keep in mind that learning from a student who has just taken the GMAT and has turned to teaching it as a “side gig,” will probably not serve you as well as learning from an experienced instructor who has not only scored well on the test but has vast amounts of teaching experience and MBA program knowledge. Check out this article about How to choose the right GMAT tutor to find out all the questions to ask before committing to a service.  

You can also find all the tutors referred to in this article at: Apex GMAT Team Page. Schedule a call to speak to them and take the first step to GMAT success.

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Understand GMAT Scoring
Posted on
04
Jan 2022

Understand GMAT Scoring – How Does GMAT Scoring Work?

While you’re preparing for your GMAT exam, it is a good idea to understand how your performance will be evaluated. The GMAT isn’t a pass/fail examination. It consists of four components and yields five scores: one from each section (divided into a scaled score and percentile rank), and a fifth total score derived from the Quantitative and Verbal sections combined. Because of the quant-heavy focus of MBA and business programs, some admissions committees place more weight on applicants’ quant scores. Although, equal attention should be paid to all sections of the GMAT so that you present yourself to the admissions committee in your best light!  We have compiled this short article, to help you understand GMAT scoring. 

GMAT Integrated Reasoning Score

Most GMAT Integrated Reasoning problems have several sections, and you must properly answer all parts of a question to receive credit for that question. Up to three of the 12 questions in the Integrated Reasoning section are experimental and do not count against your final GMAT IR score. Nevertheless, because there is no way of knowing which questions are experimental, you should put the same amount of effort into each one. As with the other parts of the GMAT exam, your total IR score ranges from 1 to 8. Taking into consideration your overall question profile, rather than the number of successfully answered questions.

GMAT Analytical Writing Assessment Score

The essay is assessed separately by a specially created computer software and a human scorer. The two results are then averaged to determine your total GMAT AWA score. The AWA has a range of scores from 0 to 6 (in half-point intervals). If the two assessments disagree by more than one point, a third evaluation is given by an expert (human) rater.

These experts are college and university professors who examine the following factors:

    • Your capacity to organize, develop, and convey your thoughts, as well as the quality of your ideas.
    • Reasons and examples to back up your claim. 
    • Controlling the components of written English to sound as professional as possible.

When it comes to grading the replies of people whose first language is not English, the raters are attentive and fair.

Verbal, Quantitative, and GMAT Total Scores

The total GMAT score, which varies from 200 to 800, is derived from both the quantitative and verbal scores. We’ll go through these two components first, then how they fit together to make the ultimate GMAT score. Each component of the test is evaluated independently, with scaled scores ranging from 0 to 60. These scores should not be compared to one other because they measure distinct factors, such as your analytic and logic skills. Rather, each should be considered on its own, and each has its own percentile distribution.

GMAT Percentile Ranking

The GMAT also includes a percentile ranking, which displays the percentage of test-takers who scored at or below a certain score; the greater the percentile ranking, the more competitive the score. Because rankings are updated every summer using exam data from the previous three years, the same score may have a different percentile number in different years. ​​Unless you’re submitting an application based on an old GMAT (from more than three years ago), this shouldn’t be a big deal. Also, check to see if your GMAT percentile has changed significantly and if so, note it in your application.

Finally, What’s a Good GMAT Score?

This article should have helped you understand GMAT scoring. A decent GMAT score is above 640 (about in the 70th percentile), whereas an exceptional score is 700 or higher (around the 90th percentile). The average score for students admitted to the top 50 MBA programs is about 660; you can find this information on the admissions website of a specific institution.

Regardless of your GMAT score, keep in mind that your score is just one piece of information in a larger picture that includes your essays, entrance interviews, undergraduate GPA, recommendation letters, job experience, prestige, and extracurricular participation. If your goal is to attend a top B-School, a high GMAT score is essential, but it is not everything. Remember that your resume, academic transcripts, and extra-curriculars also play a role in the admissions process.

 

Contributor: Nemrout Safarian

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Best GMAT prep resources
Posted on
30
Nov 2021

Best GMAT Prep Resources 2021

A simple web search on the internet will provide you with a plethora of information on how to begin your GMAT journey. However, it is important to know that before actually sitting down to study, you must choose the right and most effective resources to prepare for the test and perform as well as possible. Moreover, as nowadays one can find tons of GMAT resources and books online, it is quite challenging to sift through those which are worth trying – and to avoid those which will just give you headaches.

GMAT Prep Books 2021

Of course, we have to start with the books. There are various GMAT prep books on the market, but there are some criteria which you can use to pick the ones that will suit your skills, goals, and the time you want to invest in your GMAT prep. 

4 Things to look out for when purchasing a GMAT prep book! 

1. It should include algorithms 

A good GMAT book should walk you, step-by-step, through problems. It should show, not tell, you how to tackle specific problems. You can then decide which strategy is the most optimal for you. If you are using a GMAT prep book which doesn’t include a good explanation of a strategy or tactic needed to solve the problem, it’s better if you look for other options.

2. GMAT Practice Problems

Seeing how a problem is solved makes the reader think that everything is easy. However, you start to really learn when you yourself solve problems and exercises from scratch. This is why you need to constantly search for books which provide you with tons of GMAT practice questions and answers to them. This is so that later on you can check the solution paths yourself and keep track of your problem-solving progress. 

3. Check the Reviews

You are definitely not the only one who’s preparing for the GMAT test and is using resources to do so. It is always a good idea to try and find some reviews and feedback on a specific GMAT prep book you are planning to use, in order to understand how much it actually helped other test-takers achieve their GMAT target scores. Obviously, reviews can be subjective and very individual. However, you will still have some understanding of the overall quality of the book and its potential to help you get a stellar score on the GMAT exam.

4. Latest Versions

Always search for books that are constantly updated and go for the latest one. Although the main procedure and concept of the GMAT test have not changed a lot, some details or types of problems can be modified, so it is important to use the latest versions of GMAT books in order to not get behind on the latest updates and changes of the test.

GMAT Online Preparation Courses 2021

You may ace the GMAT by using a variety of tools such as books, online courses, forums, and other internet resources. GMAT books and online GMAT courses are the two most popular ways to prepare for the GMAT exam. However, if we try to compare the online courses with GMAT books, the former one is definitely much more efficient and effective, and here are some reasons why. 

1. You spend less time

For every 10-point increase on the GMAT, you’ll require 7 hours of preparation if you use a data-driven online resource. Approximately the same result is obtained by studying from books, which takes 12 hours. Here is when one-on-one tutoring can become very handy and effective.

2. It’s much easier to concentrate

Audio-video materials, most of the time, are more engaging to those who use them. Thus they tend to be more successful than text-based content. Because it’s simpler to concentrate, you’ll just need half as many revisions to obtain a higher proficiency level. As a consequence, you will learn more in less time.

3. Finally, the GMAT is an ONLINE exam

Because the GMAT exam is taken on a computer device it is preferable to practice on a computer during your preparation. If you solely prepare with GMAT prep books, you’ll have to switch to preparing on a computer, which will eat into your valuable preparation time. As a result, you may utilize this time to improve your GMAT ability and time management skills.

Final Thoughts on Best GMAT Prep Resources

All in all, GMAT preparation courses are in many ways more efficient and can get you the score you aim for. However, it is also very important to pick courses and tutors that are trustworthy, professional, and knowledgeable. Apex GMAT, which offers the most comprehensive GMAT preparation on the market, is a good choice to consider. You can contact us and start your GMAT journey with us.

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GMAT In NYC - ​​How To Manage The GMAT When Working On Wall Street
Posted on
21
Oct 2021

GMAT In NYC – ​​How To Manage The GMAT When Working On Wall Street

Working on Wall Street in New York City is very rewarding and prestigious. However, it is also difficult and challenging, especially when you are working and planning to take the GMAT at the same time. This article is a guideline that will help you merge your work and busy schedule with your GMAT preparation. 

Statistics show that there is a tendency for the following professionals to take the GMAT in NYC:

  • Economists
  • Researchers
  • Managers
  • Politicians
  • Financial Specialists

Obviously, these specialists already have a lot on their plate, and it must be hard to prepare for the GMAT with their huge workload. However, the GMAT test can open new doors, give you a competitive advantage in your desired field, and offer you more opportunities. So, here comes the importance of establishing a work-life balance that every professional needs to maintain in order to achieve success. 

Work-Life Balance

Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is crucial not just for your health and relationships, but also for your productivity and, ultimately, your performance. Simply said, if you don’t see work as a chore, you will work harder, make fewer mistakes, and be more likely to become brand champions in whatever you put your mind to! 

The Happiness Index suggests that businesses which develop a reputation for promoting a healthy work-life balance have become highly appealing, especially given how tough it is to recruit and keep younger employees these days.

“Replacing an employee costs on average approximately £30,000 and takes up to 28 weeks to get them up to speed,” according to Oxford Economics. With this in mind, it may be prudent to keep your current staff satisfied. Work-life balance can help you attract a desirable talent pool for new hires while also increasing retention rates. It will save time and money while maintaining a high level of internal talent.

GMAT In NYC – GMAT Prep Tips for Busy Professionals 

1. Know Where to Begin

Don’t just jump into your GMAT preparations without thinking. Because most professionals don’t have much time on their hands, it’s critical to be able to focus on the appropriate things. There are a plethora of GMAT prep materials available. If you don’t know where to begin, or how to begin, the possibilities may quickly consume you.

Obtaining a high-quality evaluation is an excellent place to start. You will not only have a better understanding of the GMAT criteria, but you will also have a more focused study strategy. Knowing if you need to spend more time on particular quantitative parts than others, for example, provides you a good starting point for your preparation.

2. Know Your GMAT Goal

Once you are all set to start your GMAT prep, it is important to understand what goals you have in terms of the test. In other words, you need to ask yourself, “What score do I need?”, “How much can I possibly get out of the time I am going to devote to my preparation?”, “What are the target scores of the institutions I am applying to?” and so on. These questions will help you be more organized and resolute in terms of what to expect from yourself and what you can do for those expectations. Here is a thorough analysis of a good GMAT score that can help you on the way. 

3. Build Your Learning Style

It’s a reality that people learn in different ways. You might be tempted to sign-up for the first online GMAT self-study preparation package that comes your way since it appears to be handy. However, it may be too late to discover that 1) these pre-packaged GMAT online resources are often too generic and of poor quality, and 2) studying with a tutor, for example, would have benefitted you more.

It pays to do your homework and select the alternatives that will be most beneficial to you. You won’t waste money and time by jumping from one strategy to the next this way. Investing the time to explore your choices from the start can help you prepare for the GMAT in a more efficient and successful manner.

GMAT Test Prep

When it comes to the actual test preparation, the best way to get the most stellar GMAT results is to have a personalized tutor. This option works best for individuals who are already working and don’t really have the time to set their studying plan, keep track of the progress and guide themselves. Rather, having a tutor will solve the problem, as they will do most of the job.

The Apex Way of GMAT Prep

As mentioned above, having a personalized GMAT tutor is the key to success, especially if you have a busy professional life. Apex GMAT offers the most comprehensive GMAT Preparation on the market today. We exclusively offer 1-on-1 private GMAT tutoring, both in-person and online, in order to deliver the strongest results for clients who simply want the best, most efficient preparation available, and the most comprehensive GMAT Preparation on the market today. We have experience working with busy professionals who have limited time due to their huge workload, and we’ve still been able to help them achieve astonishing results.

4. Make Good Use of the GMAT Practice Tests

Using practice exams as part of your GMAT preparation is a good idea, but only if you utilize them properly. Only use these exams to track progress at regular intervals. If you’re studying for 90 days, instead of taking a practice exam every week, restrict yourself to three times throughout that time. Take one at the start of your preparation to serve as a baseline, one in the middle, and the final one two weeks before your real test date. You can utilize the results of the last practice exam to improve your preparation.

5. Know Your Test Center

Once you are sure you want to begin your GMAT journey, it is very important to be aware of where your test is going to take place. This is so that you can pre-visit it, familiarize yourself with the environment in advance, and have an understanding of the rules and regulations. Here is a more detailed article that covers everything you need to know about the New York GMAT test center. 

Final Thoughts

Taking the GMAT in NYC while being a busy professional can be stressful. Hence, in this article, we tried to present the importance of a work-life balance and some effective and efficient ways to merge GMAT prep with a busy work schedule. We also highlighted the importance of having a personal tutor, when one doesn’t have the time to style their own studying schedule. Apex GMAT is one of the trailblazers in the field that can help you achieve a stellar GMAT score. Finally, we presented some final tips to build an effective studying plan and end up with a good performance on the GMAT.


Contributor:
Nemrout Safarian 

 

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Featured Video Play Icon
Posted on
08
Apr 2021

GMAT Factorial Problem: Estimation & Scenario Solution

GMAT Factorial Introduction

Factorials and divisibility, together. Two mathematical kids from opposite sides of the tracks, they come together and fall in love and they create this problem. Here we’re asked what numbers might divide some new number 20 factorial plus 17. As a refresher, a factorial is simply the number times each integer below it. So in this case, 20! is equal to 20 x 19 x 18 …. x 3 x 2 x 1. It’s a huge number. And it’s not at all possible to process in GMAT time. What we want to notice about any factorial is that it has as factors every number that it contains. So 20! is divisible by 17, it’s divisible by 15, it’s divisible by 13, 9, 2, what have you and any combination of them as well.

What The GMAT is Counting On You Not Knowing

When we’re adding the 17 though, the GMAT is counting on the idea that we don’t know what to do with it and in fact that’s the entire difficulty of this problem. So I want you to imagine 20! as a level and we’re going to take a look at this graphically. So 20! can be comprised by stacking a whole bunch of 15’s up. Blocks of 15. How many will there be? Well 20 x 19 x 18 x 17 x 16 x 14 times all the way down the line. There will be that many 15’s. But 20! will be divisible by 15. Similarly, by 17, by 19, by any number. They will all stack and they all stack up precisely to 20! because 20! is divisible by any of them.

Answer

So when we’re adding 17 to our number all we need to see is that, hey, 15 doesn’t go into 17, it’s not going to get all the way up there. 17 fits perfectly. 19? guess what? It’s too big and we’re going to have a remainder. So our answer here is B, only 17.

For other problems like this, other factorials, and what have you, please check out the links below and we will see you next time. If you enjoyed this GMAT problem, try your hand at this Science Fair Problem.

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Posted on
04
Feb 2021

GMAT 3-Month Study Plan

One of the most crucial decisions to make before you start preparing for the GMAT test is to decide when is the latest and/or earliest time to start preparing in order to do well on the exam. Giving an answer to this question is not as straightforward and easy as it might sound. There are various factors that need to be taken into account, such as your current skill set in English and Math, your target GMAT score, the amount of time per week you are planning to allot to studying, etc. However, with a sensible preparation strategy, one should be able to reach their target score on the GMAT in a 3 month timeframe. 

University Requirements

Most business schools consider the GMAT to be a crucial data point in the admissions process and your goal GMAT score depends on which universities you want to gain acceptance into. Every university has its own GMAT score requirement. So, begin your GMAT journey by researching the schools or programs that you are interested in applying to and note the average GMAT score for their recent admitted candidates. Following this, gather information regarding their application deadlines. This will give a better idea of when to schedule your exam and how to adjust your study plan accordingly. 

GMAT Study Plan
Week 1: GMAT Basics

Become familiar with the GMAT format and content. Prepare yourself for what you are about to encounter during the next 3 months and on the day of your GMAT exam. All you need to know about the GMAT, its structure, sections, timing, scoring, and more can be found Here

Take a diagnostics test. You haven’t studied at all for the GMAT? That’s totally fine, you can still take the test. As the name itself suggests, the point of this test is to diagnose, based on your Quantitative, Verbal, and Integrated Reasoning scores, your strengths and weaknesses. Something to keep in mind; You should take the exam under the same exact conditions as the actual GMAT exam. This is an excellent representation of how the GMAT exam is conducted. To take the GMAT practice exam click Here

Analyze your results. As you are in the process of reviewing the results of your diagnostics test, it would be helpful to ask yourself some questions to better understand the difficulties you encountered. When analyzing the solutions of some questions you got wrong or maybe you weren’t totally confident about, take note of any patterns. What section/s did you find most challenging? Which types of questions within each section were you struggling most with? Also, don’t forget to ask yourself questions about the “bigger picture” like: Were you able to finish every section? Did you feel anxious? How did you feel at the end of the test?

Week 2: Quant Section

Familiarize yourself with the GMAT quant section. Read about which types of quantitative questions and content that you are most likely to come across during your 3 months of preparation, mock tests, and the GMAT test.

Review GMAT Math. Before diving deeper into preparing for this section, take some time to brush up on some of the formulas, definitions, and topics of the Maths section. 

Learn the underlying concepts related to each topic (percents, ratios, exponents, statistics, etc). In this section, you will come across some specific wording that can be fundamental to finding the solution to the problems. In order to not get stuck during the exam and waste your precious time, learning about the most frequently used concepts is helpful.

Week 3: Verbal Section 

Make yourself acquainted with the GMAT verbal section. A great way to start working with the verbal section is to become familiar with the overall structure of this section. To learn more about this section, how it is scored, and some insights about its subsections click Here.

Learn how to tackle each type of question. There are three types of questions in the verbal section and their purpose is to test certain skills. This means that for each of them you have to use particular strategies. 

Tip. It’s more effective to concentrate on one area at a time. So, while preparing for this section, choose one subsection and stick with it for a couple of days.

Week 4: Monthly Progress Check 

Take a mock test. As the saying goes “Practice makes perfect.” The more you get yourself exposed to GMAT practice exams, the more likely you are to achieve your desired score.

Review your results. While looking at the answer explanations, pay attention to the solutions of the questions you got incorrectly.  

Practice the type of questions you are having difficulties with. Identify the questions where you are spending more time than you should. Read some articles that recommend tips, strategies, and tactics that can assist in solving them faster. 

Week 5: Quant Review

Practice and enhance your knowledge of data sufficiency questions. Now that you are familiar with this term it’s a good time to start reading some strategies on how to tackle these types of questions. After doing that, practicing what you just learned by solving problems focused particularly on these types of questions is extremely beneficial to your progress. 

Practice and enhance your knowledge of problem solving questions. These are other types of questions that you will need to do some research and then solve some problem sets on. 

Week 6: Verbal Review 

Practice and enhance your knowledge of Critical Reasoning questions. You can find articles about tips specifically about these types of questions and while practicing you be sure to make use of them. Another practical thing to do is read about articles related to common mistakes and how to avoid them. 

Practice and enhance your knowledge of Sentence Correction questions. Additionally, as was mentioned above, these types of questions concentrate on reviewing a few basic grammar concepts and skills.

Practice and enhance your knowledge of Reading Comprehension questions. Besides reading articles related to tips and common mistakes, reading Reading Comprehension-like writing is an excellent way to familiarize yourself with the style and content of Reading Comprehension passages.

Week 7: Integrated Reasoning Section

Become familiar with the GMAT Integrated Reasoning Section. Get informed about how long this section lasts, what is its total number of questions, and what types of questions you will encounter. Then you can move on to learn more about its purpose and what makes this section different from the others. 

Brush up on your graph reading skills. For the most part, this section depends on the same math, verbal, and critical reasoning skills that you need for the other sections of the GMAT. Keeping in mind that the inclusion of diverse graphs is what gives this section its uniqueness. You can spend some time getting comfortable with interpreting data from various sources.

Week 8: Monthly Progress Check 

Take mock tests. After studying for almost every section, taking some mock tests will assist in keeping track of your progress. 

Review your results. This time try to identify the topics you are still not comfortable with. Solely taking mock tests without analyzing the explanations to questions is not going to be much help. 

Practice the type of questions you are struggling with. After analyzing these practice tests and understanding the patterns of your weaknesses, working more on the questions you find challenging leads to score improvements.

Week 9: Integrated Reasoning Review

Practice and enhance your knowledge of all four types of questions. As you might have noticed a pattern already, reading about tips, tricks, common mistakes, strategies, tactics, etc. for each type of question and putting them into practice is what you can do when reviewing every section of the GMAT exam. 

Week 10: AWA Section 

Make yourself acquainted with the GMAT AWA section. This is the step that, as you have seen so far, applies to every section. You can’t anticipate doing well on a task without knowing what is expected from you. An introductory article regarding the AWA section can be read Here

Review sample AWA templates. This is something that might come in handy when you need to format your essays. With some modifications, these templates can be used on test day. 

Practice. Practice. Practice. Writing a couple of essays in a day will help you master your timing and get used to the structure you may use on your GMAT essay.

Week 11: Stress and Time Management 

Some other significant factors to consider while working on preparing for the GMAT test are time and stress management. A good start is reading a handful of blogs and articles that suggest many tips and strategies that can help you improve your time and stress management skills. If you want to learn more about how to master stress, how a private GMAT Tutoring can assist you with that, and more click Here.

Week 12: Review and Relax. 

During the last week don’t put a lot of pressure on yourself. Instead, try to take care of your mind and body as much as you can. One last brief review focused primarily on the sections or type of questions you struggled most with is going to be enough.  Finally, the most important tip, don’t forget to enjoy your GMAT preparation journey.

We at the Apex team hope that you find this GMAT study plan helpful. If you want to discuss your progress and possibly having some one on one preparation sessions with us, we would be happy to help, set up a complimentary consultation call with a GMAT instructor here

 

Contributor: Uerda Muca
Date: 4th February, 2021

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14
Jan 2021

Averages Problem No.1 : Test Averages

Hey guys, today we’re going to take a look at the test averages problem. This is a very straightforward mathematically oriented average problem or at least it can be. But there are very strong graphic solution paths here and there’s also a really strong sort of intuitive running tally counting solution path here. We’re going to start out with the math though, just because that’s how a lot of people are familiar with this problem. Before we jump into the heavier duty quicker sort of stuff. 

Doing the Math

So to solve this problem we want to take an average. But one of the components of our average is missing. So we have four things with an average of 78, and a fifth unknown. That means we can assume that each of the first four exams were 78. So we’ve got 4 times 78 plus X over 5. The total number of exams is going to give us our average of 80. Then through algebra, algebraic manipulation we multiply the 5 over, we get 400 equals 4 times 78 plus x. The 4 times 78 is 312. We subtract that off the 4 and that brings you to 88. Answer choice E.

Graphic Solution Path: Poker Chips

Let’s take a look at this a little differently. One of the ways I like looking at averages is imagining stacks of poker chips and you can have stacks of anything. I like poker chips because they fit together and you can make two stacks equal very easily so what we’re being told here is we have four stacks of 78 a fifth unknown stack but if we equalize them all that is if we take chips off of the unknown stack and distribute them all the stacks will be 80. That means that the fifth stack needs to be 80 and then it needs two poker chips for each of the other four stacks to bring those 78’s up. We can also envision this as just a rectangle our goal is 80 but we have 78, and our goal is five tests but we have four so we have 78 by four here. And then 80 by 5 here what’s missing is the full 80 and then 2 on each of four stacks of 48.

Running Tally Method: Intuitive Approach

The most powerful way to handle this problem though is probably by doing a running tally. Don’t even worry about the visualization but rather notice that, I’ve got 47 8s each of those are too short so I’m two, four, six. eight points short on the last test. I need to get the 80 that I want plus those eight points that I’m short bringing us to 88. And anybody who’s sweated like A+, B+, A- or a C+, B- has done this math. So if you characterize it like that a lot of times it becomes much more intuitive and once again allows you to cultivate confidence for a deeper treatment and more complex averages problems and mean problems check out the snack shop problem, check out the company production problem and there’s a great ds problem that we do the trade show problem you’ll find links to all of them just below and I hope this helped. 

 

Enjoyed this Averages Problem ? Try another type of GMAT problem to get familiar with all question types on the exam: Remainder Number Theory Problem.

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29
Sep 2020

How to Prepare for the GMAT: The Verbal Section

How To GMAT: The Verbal Section

The business world is dominated by numbers, charts, and graphs. Thus, most business school hopefuls understandably focus on developing their analytical thinking and math skills when preparing for the GMAT exam. But it’s a mistake to neglect the verbal section. Effective test prep requires a balanced, well-rounded approach.

Here’s what you need to know about the GMAT verbal section. 

What is The Verbal Section and What Does It Test For?

The verbal section primarily evaluates the test taker’s overall command of standard written English, ability to analyze and evaluate arguments, and critical reading skills. As such, the verbal section is made up of three types of problems: critical reasoning, sentence correction, and reading comprehension. 

The 3 sections have a total of 36 questions, with a time limit of 65 minutes. This leaves, on average, 1 minute and 49 seconds per question.

How Is it scored

The verbal section, like the quantitative section, is evaluated on a scale of 0 to 60. A 51 is considered a perfect score on both sections. 

The GMAT also ranks test takers by percentile. The percentile system uses GMAT scores from the previous three years to calculate how applicants performed compared to their peers. For example, if an applicant scores in the 80th percentile, it means he or she performed better than 80% of test takers over the last three years. 

Although the scaled scores don’t change over time, the percentiles do. Business schools assess both the scaled and percentile scores to get an adequate understanding of the applicant’s strengths and weaknesses. 

Language on the Verbal Section

The language in the verbal section is more sophisticated and academic than intermediate, everyday English. If you aren’t accustomed to reading formal English, your verbal prep might require some extra time and energy. 

It will be easier to identify errors, main points, and bias statements once you’ve trained your ear to formal English. Practice reading formal texts efficiently and effectively, and avoid vernacular texts. Instead, choose sources that are known for using elevated writing styles, such as The New Yorker or The New York Times. 

Critical Reasoning

The critical reasoning subsection consists of a brief text outlining an argument (usually less than 100 words) and five answer choices. Critical reasoning questions measure the test taker’s ability to formulate and evaluate arguments. To answer correctly, consider the argument’s logical structure. Each answer choice might strengthen the argument, weaken the argument, or explain the argument’s flaws.   

Although the best tip for critical reasoning questions is to read carefully and watch out for tricky wording, it will help to keep the following questions in mind:

  1. How is the argument structured?
  2. What’s the conclusion?
  3. What evidence supports the conclusion?
  4. Which assumptions link the evidence to the conclusion?

Reading Comprehension

Reading comprehension evaluates not only the candidate’s understanding of words and statements, but more importantly, the underlying logic behind them. 

In this subsection, you’ll find passages of text followed by several questions about the text’s details and implications. Some passages draw from various disciplines, such as the physical, biological, or social sciences, while others  refer to business-related fields. 

Here are some tips to make the process less tedious and more efficient:

  1. Read the whole passage without taking too much time to memorize details
  2. Analyze the logical structure of the passage
  3. Ask yourself: 
    • What’s the main argument?
    • What does the author state explicitly?  What is implied?
    • How would you describe the author’s tone and attitude?

Keep an eye out for opinionated words–for example, “clearly,” “obviously,” or “apparently”–these words hint at the author’s attitudes, and they’ll help you suss out the main point. 

Sentence Correction

The sentence correction portion tests a candidate’s ability to communicate effectively. Effective communication isn’t just grammatically correct–it’s clear, direct, and concise. 

In this portion, you’ll find five different versions of the same sentence. The goal is to choose the version that’s grammatically correct and expresses the idea with precision and clarity. Choose wisely!

Conclusion

Taking the quantitative section into account, there are a number of score combinations that will lead to the same overall score, which leave plenty of room to maneuver. However, given the rise in quantitative scores in recent years, total scores and percentile rankings have shifted. This gives candidates an opportunity to boost their overall scores by mastering the verbal section. 

For additional tips related to the verbal section of the GMAT read: How to boost your verbal score next.

 

Contributor: Ivan Minchev
Date: 29th September 2020

 

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