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FAST Math for the GMAT (Part 5 of 5)

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Manhattan Prep GMAT Blog - FAST Math for the GMAT (Part 5 of 5) by Stacey Koprince

Did you know that you can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free? We’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


Welcome to the fifth and final installment of our Fast Math series. (Miss any earlier ones? Start here.)

Make your life easier on the GMAT: do less Math. (Yes, with a capital-M. ) I use Math-with-a-capital-M to mean formal, textbook math.

Sure, you’re going to have to do some textbook math on the GMAT, but it’s really not a math test. Business schools don’t expect you to have to do paper math in b-school or the real world. Rather, they’re testing how you think about math. And thinking about math in the real world is a lot different than textbook, school-based math.

For one thing, the correct answer on the GMAT is never actually a number or a math term. The correct answer is just (A), (B), (C), (D), or (E). How you get to that correct letter doesn’t matter in the slightest.

Okay let’s dive into our 5th Principle for Fast Math! Read more

FAST Math for the GMAT (Part 4 of 5)

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Manhattan Prep GMAT Blog - FAST Math for the GMAT (Part 4 of 5) by Stacey Koprince

Guess what? You can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free—we’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


We’re up to part 4 of our series on Fast Math for the GMAT. If you’re seeing this for the first time, start with part 1 and work your way back here.

Let’s dive right in.

Principle #4: Estimate…and not just when they tell you to.

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FAST Math for the GMAT (Part 3 of 5)

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Manhattan Prep GMAT Blog - FAST Math for the GMAT (Part 3 of 5) by Stacey Koprince

Did you know that you can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free? We’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


Welcome to the third installment of our Fast Math series. (Miss the earlier installments? Start here.)

Here’s the basic premise: I’m always on the lookout for ways to get out of doing tedious paper calculations on the GMAT.

The awesome part: the test writers actually set this up for me! They know we’re not going to have to do a bunch of paper math in b-school or the real world, so they construct problems that allow us to take advantage of all sorts of shortcuts…if we’re paying attention. Read more

FAST Math for the GMAT (Part 2 of 5)

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Manhattan Prep GMAT Blog - FAST Math for the GMAT (Part 2 of 5) by Stacey Koprince

Did you know that you can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free? We’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


Welcome to part 2 of our Fast Math series! In Part 1, I acquainted you with the fact that I’m a lazy math person: I don’t want to do any more than I have to in order to answer the question. And this series shows you how!

Principle #2: Learn shortcuts for when you do have to do the math.

You already saw the first example of this in Principle #1:

Shortcut #1: When multiplying a string of numbers, pair off the 5’s and 2’s and multiply them first.

Let’s say that that problem hadn’t had a 20 in it. If we had to multiply 5 and 81…how would you do that? Read more

FAST Math for the GMAT (Part 1 of 5)

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division-sign-gmat-fast-math-part-1-of-5-stacey-koprinceGuess what? You can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free—we’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty lazy when it comes to doing math on paper. Blame constant access to Excel and the calculator on my phone…but I’m completely over doing math on paper.

If you give me a problem that’s going to require half a page of calculations…well, I’m not going to want to do that problem. But on the GMAT Quant section, I don’t get a calculator, so how can I still get a 99th percentile score while staying true to my lazy-math desires?

Let’s do some Fast Math! Read more

Know the GMAT Code: Interest Rate GMAT Problems

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Manhattan Prep GMAT Blog - Know the GMAT Code: Interest Rate GMAT Problems by Stacey Koprince

Did you know that you can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free? We’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


I’m excited about the problem I have to share with you today in the latest installment of our Know the Code series. Interest rate GMAT problems can be extremely annoying—you might find yourself spending 4 minutes and still having to guess in the end. So your first decision is whether you even want to tackle these kinds of problems in the first place.

But there are some things you can learn that could make answering interest rate GMAT problems a lot less irritating. Try out this Integrated Reasoning (IR) Two-Part problem from the GMATPrep® free practice exams. (Note: This one is an IR question, but I could absolutely see them testing the same principle on a Quant problem.) Read more

Practicing Sets of GMAT Problems: Mimic the Real Test (Part 3 of 3)

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Manhattan Prep GMAT Blog - Practicing Sets of GMAT Problems: Mimic the Real Test (Part 3 of 3) by Stacey Koprince

Guess what? You can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free—we’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


Welcome to part 3 of our series! If you haven’t seen the earlier installments yet, please start with part 1 and work your way back to me here.

We’ve talked about how to create sets of GMAT problems and how to set your time limit. We haven’t yet discussed what you need to learn from one of these sets before you try another one. Read more

Practicing Sets of GMAT Problems: Mimic the Real Test (Part 2 of 3)

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SK 406 - Practicing Sets of GMAT Problems: Mimic the Real Test (Part 2 of 3) by Stacey Koprince

Guess what? You can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free—we’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


Last time, we talked about all of the basics of creating practice problem sets. Today, we’re going to talk about how to create larger sets that really mimic the GMAT testing experience. (If you haven’t read the first part yet, do start there.)

What are my goals for these larger sets of GMAT problems?

When you’ve made it through your primary review of all study materials (all question types and content areas), you’re ready to start doing larger problem sets: 8, 12, 16. (I’ll tell you later why these are all multiples of 4.)

Your goal is two-fold:

—Test (and continue to build) your skills on all this stuff you’ve been studying.

—Practice your overall business-decision-making skills (in other words, practice under conditions that mimic the real GMAT as closely as possible). Read more

Practicing Sets of GMAT Problems: Mimic the Real Test (Part 1 of 3)

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Manhattan Prep GMAT Blog - Practicing Sets of GMAT Problems: Mimic the Real Test (Part 1 of 3) by Stacey Koprince

Guess what? You can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free—we’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


When you first start studying, you’re going to do GMAT problems one at a time and then check your work and analyze the problem. But, eventually, you’re going to need to graduate to sets of GMAT problems that allow you to practice your executive decision-making—as on the real test.

So how do you do that? How many should you do at once? Where should you get those problems? How should you choose which ones to do?

That’s exactly what we’re going to talk about right now. Read more

GMAT Sentence Correction: Spot the Trap! (Part 2)

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Manhattan Prep GMAT Blog - GMAT Sentence Correction: Spot the Trap! (Part 2) by Stacey Koprince

Did you know that you can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person GMAT courses absolutely free? We’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


Last time, we talked about how to read for meaning and spot redundancy traps on GMAT Sentence Correction.

I’ve got another trappy SC for you; this one is from the GMATPrep® free exams. Go for it! Read more