Month: March 2015

Comparatives.001

Sentence Correction – Comparatives 2

In the previous Sentence Correction post, we saw how it is important to listen for structure in order to get SC questions on the GMAT right. We took one type of structure, which involves making the right comparison, and saw how it is tested on the GMAT. Let us look at a few more questions of the same type but varying difficulty levels. EASY Unlike Schoenberg’s 12-tone system that dominated the music of the postwar period, Bartok founded no school and left behind only a handful of disciples. (A) Schoenberg’s 12-tone system that dominated (B) Schoenberg and his 12-tone system which dominated (C) Schoenberg, whose 12-tone system dominated (D) the 12-tone system of Schoenberg that has dominated (E) Schoenberg and the 12-tone system, dominating In this question, the original sentence sentence incorrectly compares Schoenberg’s 12-tone system with Bartok; the correct option has to compare Schoenberg to Bartok, which only option (C) does. The sentence is relatively short and the comparison is easy to identify so this is an easy question that can be solved in …

Comparatives.001

Sentence Correction – Comparatives 1

While solving Sentence Correction questions, a lot of test-takers rely on their ear to give them the answer, which is why one often hears the phrase, “this option doesn’t sound right”. While the ear does play a very important role, it more important to listen with a purpose. When it comes to Standard Written English, which is what is tested on the GMAT as well as other tests, it is important to listen for structure. Different sentences have different structures based on their construction. In this post, let us look at one type of structure, comparatives, with help of a sentence correction question from the Official Guide (OG). Unlike the buildings in Mesopotamian cities, which were arranged haphazardly, the same basic plan was followed for all cities of the Indus Valley: with houses laid out on a north-south, east-west grid, and houses and walls were built of standard-size bricks. (1) the buildings in Mesopotamian cities, which were arranged haphazardly, the same basic plan was followed for all cities of the Indus Valley: with houses (2) …

Logic Not Formulae.001

Problem Solving – Logic Not Formulae

A lot of test-takers feel that like for other tests for the GMAT Quantitative as well they need to learn a lot of formulae. They often come and tell us they are revising all the formulas in the last few days before the test; nothing could be more superfluous since very few GMAT problems actually test your knowledge of formulas apart from problems involving Geometry. What is evaluated your ability to reason in a quantitative context as this question from the Official Guide (OG) illustrates. If s and t are positive integers such that s/t=64.12, which of the following could be a remainder when s is divided by t? (A) 2 (B) 4 (C) 8 (D) 20 (E) 45 Many test-takers are flummoxed by this problem because they do not know what to do with it! They quickly realize that there is no formula they can apply and that they only have their wits to rely on. So how does one approach it?

Critical Reasoning.002

Critical Reasoning: Correlation-Causation — Weaken Question 1

The biggest misconception about Critical Reasoning questions on the GMAT® is that they are based on common sense. Well, nothing could be farther from the truth. In fact, CR questions are based on rules of formal logic. The question from the Official Guide (OG) below is a perfect illustration. A study of marital relationships in which one partner’s sleeping and waking cycles differ from those of the other partner reveals that such couples share fewer activities with each other and have more violent arguments than do couples in a relationship in which both partners follow the same sleeping and waking patterns. Thus, mismatched sleeping and waking cycles can seriously jeopardize a marriage. Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument above? (A) Married couples in which both spouses follow the same sleeping and waking patterns also occasionally have arguments that can jeopardize the couple’s marriage. (B) The sleeping and waking cycles of individuals tend to vary from season to season. (C) The individuals who have sleeping and waking cycles that differ significantly …