The best thing about GMAT Number Properties problems is that the numbers are nice and easy. There’s no need to worry about fractions, decimals, or percents! Read more
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One common complaint I hear from my students is that they ‘haven’t done math like this since high school.’ And they’re pretty much right: the concepts in the Quant section are by and large wrapped up by Algebra II. But for some subjects, my students drastically underestimate how long it has been since they’ve thought about them. One such subject: remainders on the GMAT. Read more
We were taught in school to think of whole numbers in the context of two groups: Odds vs. Evens. I remember thinking it was like the black vs. white pieces on a chess board (I was kind of a nerd). As I’m sure you know, an Even number is simply a number divisible by 2, and an Odd number is any number that’s not even. But ask yourself this: what is the remainder when you divide an odd number by 2? Take a minute to think about this. Try out a few different odd numbers and see if you can identify a pattern.
The remainder will always be 1 when you divide an odd number by 2. Always. And when you divide an even number by 2? Well, by definition the even number is divisible by 2, so the remainder is therefore zero.
The GMAT loves taking this concept and testing how deep your understanding goes. Therefore, we must free ourselves of the simplistic odd vs. even framework that we were fed in school, and explore this concept to a much deeper level. That is exactly what I intend to do in this blog post.
I always joke with my students that if I were the number 3 on the number line, I would really hate my next door neighbor to the left (number 2). He thinks he’s so special because there’s a name for any multiple of him (“even”); and if that’s not enough to give him a big head, they also invented a name for any number that isn’t a multiple of him (“odd”). What do you call multiples of me? “multiple of 3”. What do you call numbers that are not multiples of me? “not a multiple of 3”. LAME