Monday, July 18, 2011


My progress through Sets 1-6 of the ETS manual's review of the new Verbal section:

Set 1, Discrete Questions: Easy: 8 out of 8 correct

Set 2, Reading Comp Questions: Easy: 9 out of 9 correct

Set 3, Discrete Questions: Medium: 7 out of 8 correct

Set 4, Reading Comp Questions: Medium: 9 out of 9 correct

Set 5, Discrete Questions: Hard: 7 out of 9 correct (ye gods)

Set 6, Reading Comp Questions: Hard: 5 out of 8 correct (for shame!)

The questions did indeed get much harder in the "hard" sets; you're obliged to make some awfully hair-splitting decisions, and to follow the meaning of reading passages very, very closely. Two or three of the reading passages were frustrating because they felt more like math problems than actual reading comp problems (e.g., one was about partial versus total measures of US versus USSR agricultural production).

I'm about to take a peek at the Quant review, and will call it a night after that. This coming week, I'll crack open the Kaplan workbooks and start doing exercises in them. I'm excited, because these workbooks contain plenty of drills and explanations. The so-called "Kaplan Method" doesn't appear to be much more than good old common sense, but that's fine: all I really want is (1) to be reintroduced to some forgotten concepts, and then (2) have the chance to apply those concepts, over and over, until I get them down pat. I think the workbooks will prove to be a good investment.

Right now, though, the Verbal is worrying me more than the Quant is. Those "hard" sections have made me nervous. But there's no need to fret: I've chosen to work on Quant on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and will devote my Tuesdays and Thursdays to Verbal. The weekends will see me working in the "big" test books-- the ETS and Kaplan books that have complete GRE sample tests in them. Workbook exercises during the week; sample tests on weekends. I think this works, especially now that I've picked up some momentum in my studies. More news as it happens.


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