5 Things to Remember while Preparing for the GMAT Verbal Section

The GMAT takes its place among the top contenders for demanding competitive exams. It is attempted by prospective candidates who want to pursue their MBA program overseas. The scores of the GMAT exam is used as a measure to admit candidates in some of the top B-schools in the world. There are 4 main topics which the exam comprises of :

  • Quantitative Aptitude
  • Verbal Reasoning
  • Analytical Writing
  • Integrated Reasoning

All of the above sections play an important role in the exam. However the Quant and the Verbal section take centre stage and are arguably the most significant portions of the GMAT. While the Quant section evaluates a candidate’s competencies to solve numerical problems and interpret data, the Verbal is aimed at testing an individual’s verbal capabilities and vocabulary knowledge. It has become common practice now that most students have very limited or no reading habit. They have restricted themselves to minimal exposure to good content and are familiar with reading articles online or on social media. This is however not helpful when it comes to preparing for the GMAT verbal section. Although the syllabus consists of only the fundamental topics it is essential to have a good understanding of all the topics in the verbal section. Following is a list of the top 5 details you will have to keep in mind during your preparation for the Verbal section.

1. The effectiveness of developing a reading habit

This is one of the most important strategies which one has to adopt if he/she wants to obtain a good score on their verbal section. A reading habit will help you get exposed to various writing styles of authors. You will come across new phrases and terminologies helping you to gain a better understanding of the same. Spend time on reading good quality publications like – The Guardian, The Times, The Wall street journal, The Daily Telegraph etc. The style of writing used in these will be similar to what you would come across in your GMAT verbal section. This will help you get familiar with the various styles of writing and you will find it easier in the exam as well. Additionally a reading habit will also assist you to be more confident while attempting the verbal section in the exam.

2. Study Materials for Verbal

Investing in the appropriate study materials will assist you immensely with your preparation for the verbal section. Since there is a vast amount of materials available online it becomes difficult to choose materials which are of good quality and calibre. Your best option is to go for – The Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review. Since the official guide is devised by the creators of the GMAT itself it will contain questions in the same format as they may appear in the exam. This will prove beneficial for you as you will be ready to face any questions in the verbal section. Below is a list of books/materials which you can utilize for your verbal preparation.

Books for GMAT Verbal and Grammar:

  • 30 Days to More Powerful Vocabulary
  • GMAT Sentence Correction (Manhattan Prep GMAT Strategy Guides)
  • The Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review 2017 with Online Question Bank and Exclusive Video (Good book, Covers all the topics that are to be used to preps for GMAT)
  • MBA Admissions Strategy: From Profile Building to Essay Writing (Magical Book on essay writing)
  • GRE Analytical Writing: Solutions to the Real Essay Topics (Test Prep Series) (One more effective book)
  • GRE CAT-Answers to Real Essay Questions by Acro
  • Graduate Admissions Essays: Write Your Way into the Graduate School of Your Choice

3. Verbal Syllabus

The syllabus for the verbal section comprises basic high school and middle school grammar concepts. Some of the important sections in the exam are – Reading Comprehension, Sentence Correction, Critical Reasoning. You will have to be well versed with the following topics to obtain a good score on your Verbal section.

  • Parts of Speech – Verbs, Nouns, Pronouns, Adjectives, Adverbs,Conjunctions, Prepositions
  • Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
  • The Sentence – Clause and Phrase
  • Subject Verb Agreement
  • Pronouns Agreement
  • Modifiers
  • Parallelism
  • Verb Tense

4. The importance of Vocabulary

Good vocabulary knowledge plays a significant role in your performance in the Verbal section. If you are someone who finds it difficult learning and recalling new words then rest assured since there are several methods to improve/develop one’s vocabulary. When you are learning new words you could start using the same in your conversations or in your emails so that you understand how it is relevant. Another useful strategy which you can adopt is to learn the roots of words. When you have this practice you tend to understand the meaning of the word in a better fashion. You can also begin using a thesaurus to learn more synonyms of the words that you have learnt. If you like to study in a more visually appealing manner then you can opt to learn through some interactive games like Scrabble, Boggle or numerous other games which are available online. Another easy way to recall these words which you have learnt is to use mnemonics. You can use this technique to form associations of the words with relevant phrases or sentences in your mind.

5. Have a clear grasp on the fundamentals

If you have a strong foundation of the grammar rules and have good vocabulary knowledge then preparing for the Verbal will be a very simple task. The GMAT verbal is mainly aimed at evaluating your knowledge on the fundamental concepts of grammar and your abilities to comprehend passages to answer questions related to it. When you are confident about your basics then you will find it very easy to navigate your way through the Verbal questions in the GMAT exam.

The above mentioned steps are bound to help you score high in your GMAT verbal. You will have to remember that this section is not something which you have to fear. You will be able to easily conquer it with the right practices combined with diligent hard work.

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