5 Steps 2 GMAT
GMAT problem solving section is a nightmare for many aspirants. In this article, I attempt to expunge the math phobia from your mind. To start with, think, why do you hate mathematics? Perhaps, you have not learned the basics properly. The edifice was standing on a loose soil and it collapsed soon. Or, you thought that mathematics was not an absolute requisite for a career and that you could manage your life with little or no mathematics. Some of you might have even questioned the applicability of high-level mathematics in practical situations. Whatever may be the case; does the math phobia still stick to your mind?
I should admit that it is possible to get a decent job even without knowing much mathematics and that the high-level mathematics does not have applicability in some people’s life. However, I strongly argue that knowing a bit of mathematics shapes your thinking; it enhances the neuron connectivity in your brain. Perhaps that might change your life. I did a research recently to find out whether students can really improve their ability to calculate simple mathematics mentally. My conclusion is a big yes. Not only did they improve their ability but also gained confidence in mathematics. Every day they improved their speed and time. Every time they pass a test they enjoyed the ‘aha’ feeling. If you still have the math phobia, I suggest you to read the following steps:
First, build a strong foundation. Master the basics of mathematics. Learn to do simple addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division mentally. Take two single digit numbers, store the numbers in your mind, add the two numbers, and check your result. You can also do subtraction and multiplication. Once you master with single digits, take two digits numbers. You will be able to do addition and subtraction comfortably. However, you will find difficult to do multiplication. You may be able to do multiplication up to the number 20. There is a method to multiply a two-digit number with another two-digit number, which I have explained in my book. You will have to practice every day. This is very important because every problem solving involves several such exercises. Mental calculation is much faster and saves you a lot of crucial time in test taking.
Secondly, learn the basic concepts and properties. You will get a good idea if you go through the OG under math review section. Most of the GMAT problems demand application of properties from multiple topics. Unless you master the concepts and properties, you will not be able to tackle such problems. One way to remember the properties is to do more and more problems and perhaps on a regular basis.
Thirdly, take a diagnostic test and evaluate yourself. There are a number of GMAT sites, which provide free on-line tests. This step is necessary to know yourself where you stand at present. Do not worry about your score because that is not the purpose. However, it tells you the weak areas, which need more attention. Take the weaker areas by topics and master it.
Fourthly, learn test-taking strategy. You will be given five options for each question. If you study the options, it might give you some cue to the question. You may be able to eliminate two or three options, which are logically inappropriate. You save a lot of time when you approach the question with reverse doing. For example, once you form the equation, instead of solving the equation in the conventional method, you can substitute the options one by one in the equation to check which option is appropriate. In certain situations, that could be faster.
Finally, learn to solve the hardest problems. There are some sites, which provide you hardest problems and review on your solutions too. It might be useful. It gives you an opportunity to unlearn, learn, and relearn.
Do you know?
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