How to start preparing for the GMAT Verbal

GMAT verbal is considered to be one of the most difficult sections by many individuals who attempt the exam. This mainly stems from the fact that most students don’t have the habit of reading on a regular basis. Although the GMAT evaluates the candidates on only the basic concepts of grammar in its verbal section, it is still treated as a tough topic on the exam. There are several strategies and study techniques which you can adopt to overcome the same. It is imperative that you follow a study plan diligently so that you can successfully score high in the verbal section of the GMAT exam.

Before you commence preparing for the GMAT verbal you should initially do a self-evaluation to understand your strengths and weaknesses in a better manner. This will help you to easily plan and accordingly execute your studying methods. Now that you have an effective study plan in place you will be able to track the progress which you make with your preparation and also ensure that you don’t miss out on any important topics as well. Following are a few of the important preparation techniques which you have to follow to ensure that your verbal preparation is successful.

Inculcate a reading habit:

This is one of the mandatory steps which one needs to adopt if he/she would like to be proficient in their verbal section. If you already don’t have a reading habit (which is the case generally these days!) then it is highly recommended that you develop one immediately. Reading quality publications like – The Wall Street Journal, The Times, The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph etc. will help you to get familiar with the different writing styles of various authors. Additionally, you come across new words and you will understand how and in what context they can be used.

Invest in good study materials:

Another critical point is to ensure that you use the appropriate study materials for this section. There are an ample amount of materials which you can use and they are easily accessible online. However, you need to be cautious in determining which ones are relevant to your preparation since there is some content which is not of good caliber. The most credible material which you can use is the Official Guide from GMAC – The Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review 2019. Since it is from the creators of the GMAT exam itself, the guide contains questions pertaining to the exam which are most likely in the same format as they will appear in the exam.Some of the other books which you can opt for are also given in the following list: A Modern Approach to Verbal Reasoning (FULLY SOLVED), 30 Days to More Powerful Vocabulary, GMAT Sentence Correction (Manhattan Prep GMAT Strategy Guides).

Develop your grammar skills:

This is definitely an influential point towards your GMAT verbal preparation since the exercises in the section will certainly evaluate your grammar competencies. This is especially true for the Sentence Correction tasks in this section. You need to establish a strong foundation and a good understanding of the following grammar concepts – Parts of Speech – Verbs, Nouns, Pronouns, Adjectives, Prepositions, Adverbs, Conjunctions, The Sentence – Clause and Phrase, Pronouns Agreement, Modifiers, Parallelism, Verb Tense, Subject-Verb Agreement, Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions. Ensure to spend adequate time to learn about the above concepts in depth so that you are confident to complete the tasks and score well in the verbal section of the exam.

Improve vocabulary:

Your vocabulary knowledge is also sure to be tested during the exam and this is one of the aspects which many aspirants of the exam find utmost difficulty with. However, it is also easy to enhance your knowledge learning these new words by adopting certain strategies. One of the best ways to work on your vocabulary is to use flashcards or apps which assist you to learn etymology (origin) of the word and the context in which it is used. When you understand the meaning of these words you could even rephrase them in your own words so that it will help you recall them in a better manner. You can learn these on a regular basis and start using it in your daily conversations as well. Another technique you can use is to surround yourself with these new words either at your workplace or at your home so that you are in constant touch with them. Using Mnemonics is one more technique which will help you recollect the words you have learned. Mnemonics is the simple yet effective approach of using shortcuts to create associations with words and retain more complex words. For example – using the first letters in the word to frame a sentence which you won’t forget (it need not always make complete sense since it is just a way for you to remember the words). A tip you can use is to split the word into many parts so that it is easier to make up a pattern. Try to start associating the words with things you see or use frequently. The more creative you are the simpler it is for you to remember the same.

Time yourself & Become an expert in RC:

Reading Comprehension is often contemplated as a very challenging section to complete. Once again with the use of smart approaches and effective active reading techniques you can easily navigate your way through the RC passages. Remember that you have limited time so don’t dwell on each and every sentence of the passage, at the same time do not skim through the passages as well. Both of the above practices are certain to make you lose out on precious time and points in the exam. Read actively to understand the main concept of the passage and the key point which the author is trying to convey. You could alternatively read the question stem first before you proceed to read the passage. This way you will be aware of what to look for in the passage.

Review your preparation:

Finally it is important to review your entire preparation once you have completed the same. This way you will be able to revisit and revise any concepts which you may not be confident about. You could also judge your performance by attempting a few practice tests to become familiar with the testing patterns of the exam.

All of the above methods are sure to aid you with your preparation efforts for the GMAT verbal section. It is also essential that you maintain a calm composure throughout so that you are able to score well in the exam.

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