Articles published in 2011

Flashcard Sneak Peek: OMG, “Exponents” Are In Math AND Verbal!


Take a sneak peek into Manhattan Prep’s 500 Essential Words and 500 Advanced Words GRE flashcard sets!

Did you know that an “exponent” isn’t just the power to which we raise a number? Check it out:

Want to adopt 1,000 new flashcards? Visit our store here.

Shock News! British education reformer dislikes testing, has excellent vocabulary


Education reformer Charlotte Mason (1842-1923) had a few things to say about testing:

As to the manner of study, this is ruled by the style of questions set in a given subject; and Dry-as-dust wins the day because it is easier and fairer to give marks upon definite facts than upon mere ebullitions of fancy or genius.”

Ebullition might be a new word for you, but if you’ve taken a Manhattan GRE class, you certainly know the word ebullient, which means “overflowing with enthusiasm or excitement; exuberant,” or simply, “boiling.”
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Math in the Real World: Counting Problems


The practical applications of math in the real world, from intrepid U.S. Post Office employee James Wu.


“This is a wall panel for an apartment building in Boston. It has five floors, and each floor has the same number of apartments. I have a package for #49–the buzzer doesn’t work very well, but they tell me to go up. What floor do I go to?”

Work out a solution before clicking “More”.

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The GRE with Jen – 1/5/12


jen dziuraLooking for a free way to boost your GRE score? Come to our next GRE with Jen on Thursday, 1/5/2012 at 8pm. The event is totally free and open to the general public.

At this event, Manhattan Prep GRE instructor Jennifer Dziura will give a brief talk on an aspect of GRE Strategy, followed by Q&A. Bring any and all questions about GRE content, the MST, scoring, etc. A mix of verbal and math problem practice will follow.

You can find more information here.

The Math Beast Challenge Problem of the Week – December 19th, 2011


Math BeastEach week, we post a new Challenge Problem for you to attempt. If you submit the correct answer, you will be entered into that week’s drawing for two free Manhattan Prep GRE Strategy Guides.

challenge problem image 1

challenge problem image 2

If the pharmaceutical division spends $720,000 on legal expenses, and the chemicals division spends between a third and a half as much on legal expenses as the pharmaceuticals division does, which of the following could be the total expenses of the chemical division

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Visual Dictionary: Turgid


tomatoIt’s been awhile since we’ve done a Visual Dictionary post, but let’s take on the word turgid:

Turgid (adj)
1. swollen; distended; tumid.
2. inflated, overblown, or pompous; bombastic: turgid language.

What would you describe as turgid (or its synonym, tumid)?

Reader Thomas M. writes:

“My withering tomato plants became turgid and vibrant after yesterday’s rain. An heirloom tomato becomes so turgid that it will split open with ripe juices … the best tomato you’ll ever taste. Isn’t it amazing how a succulent plant like the aloe vera plant stays turgid in the arid desert, while a plant native to our climate would wilt and wither in the desert?”
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2011 GRE FAQs


As 2011 draws to a close, we thought it best to take a look back at the year. 2011 was a big year here at Manhattan GRE. On August, 1st the Revised GRE came out, and in preparation for that change we released our 2nd edition strategy guides. We also revamped our website and unveiled a new logo. With all of these changes going on we got a lot more student questions than normal, so I thought I’d recap some of the questions our students asked most often this past year.

1. What is the new 1000?

On the old GRE scale (400-1600) the score of 1000 was commonly thrown around as a cutoff score below which your chances of graduate school acceptance were severely impeded. Based on our research this score cutoff was something of a myth, but it was very widely believed. Sure, certain schools asked for it, but in reality, 1000 just sounded like a nice number and didn’t really say much about an applicant’s ability level. (For instance, a perfect 800 quant score and the worst possible verbal score of 200 added up to 1000, the same way two 500s do, but those candidates would be extremely different.)

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Facetiously Fatuous or Fatuously Facetious?


dotThe English language has a lot of words for being less than serious.

Some of those words describe smart, sarcastic people (Dorothy Parker had a mordant wit), and some describe silly, foolish people (I find most of the humor in Everybody Loves Raymond to be unbearably fatuous).

Jocular, jocose, and jocund are three very similar-sounding synonyms that just mean “joking around.”

Waggish means “roguish in merriment and good humor; jocular.”

Facetious means “not meant to be taken seriously or literally.”

When I said that that burned grilled cheese you made me was the most sophisticated meal I’d ever eaten, I was being facetious. I mean, Kraft singles?

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Divisibility and Primes: Seeing Stars


Divisibility and Primes is an important GRE issue that is covered extensively in our Number Properties Strategy Guide. Check out this fantastic video on the topic:


Incidentally, the video refers to the boredom you might experience from your teacher’s “soporific” voice. “Soporific” means “inducing sleep,” either in a medical sense or in the sense of not expressing why factoring is actually very exciting.

Here’s a related problem on Divisibility and Primes. Try to solve it yourself before clicking “More.”

If the greatest common factor of 27 and x is 9, which of the following could be x?

Select all that apply.


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The Math Beast Challenge Problem of the Week – December 5th, 2011


Math BeastEach week, we post a new Challenge Problem for you to attempt. If you submit the correct answer, you will be entered into that week’s drawing for two free Manhattan Prep GRE Strategy Guides.

challenge problem image

Quantity A

Quantity B

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