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Doing verbal passages untimed, still 2 wrong per

Discussion in 'MCAT Discussions' started by smiley27, Jul 2, 2012.

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  1. smiley27

    smiley27

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    After doing the first two EK101 tests I received a 5 and a 4. I decided to stop doing full-length timed tests and to do single untimed passages to work on accuracy.

    After doing 18 TPRH compendium passages(no explanations, only answers) untimed I still get one to two wrong per passage, even doing them untimed. I just started doing verbal but how high of a red flag do my EK101 scores and these untimed errors raise?

    Fyi, I'm doing them untimed but i never completely reread the passage and just take extra time looking back to answer individual questions.

    Should I keep carrying on like this and just work on accuracy or do I need a complete overhaul? I'm planning to take the mcat next summer, one year from now.
  2. BABSstudent

    BABSstudent Established Member

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    I would stop practicing verbal. You are going to hate yourself in a year when you go to actually prepare for the test and don't have any practice material.

    Instead, focus on just reading books, magazines (like Forbes, Scientific American, the Economist), and enjoying yourself. You just need practice reading material like this and you will begin to comprehend more.

    I would also suggest studying the questions themselves. Many of the answers can be marked off as incorrect without actually reading the passage. Maybe pick up a Kaplan book or TPR and read the sections about taking the test. They go into the types of questions you will get and how to approach them.
  3. tmandudeguy

    tmandudeguy

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    STOP WASTING PRECIOUS MATERIAL! Those are the top 2 verbal materials buddy!
  4. shaboobly

    shaboobly

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    yea you have a lot of time. don't waste valuable resources until you actually need them.
  5. smiley27

    smiley27

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    I'm doing the inclass compendium and not the verbal workbook which I also have. I'm more worried about not being prepared for verbal than running out of material which is why I'm starting to prep early.
  6. BABSstudent

    BABSstudent Established Member

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    Trust me, you will regret it later on. I did an AAMC test about a year before the test and I regretted it later since that did nothing for me but I couldn't retake the test and get an accurate representation of how I would do on the actual test.

    Same with Examkrackers 101 passages. I did 4 tests a year before and couldn't retake the tests because I remembered reading every single passage.

    Read just other material to prepare yourself. Save the studying until AT LEAST 6 months before. Better yet, save it for 4 months before the actual test.
  7. smiley27

    smiley27

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    Well thanks for the advice but let's assume I have an unlimited amount of resources to practice with just so we can address my problem. I will buy practice passages from other test prep companies when I run out. I need to address my problem now and not put it off until near exam time when that time is for practicing and refining and not for remediation.

    Please stop advising me to stop altogether, this advice doesn't address my problem but postpones it to a later time which I prefer not to have my current deficiency.
  8. shaboobly

    shaboobly

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    no one told you to stop altogether; if you want to use passages now to address your problems then go for it. no one is going to be able to tell you your specific problem. it's something you must do on your own.

    the advice given was to stop using your resources and spend your time to practice reading actively. you have a year until you take the mcat. if you start reading what babs suggested, it will only help you, not hurt you. you come to this forum to ask for advice, which is what you were given. don't retort back like our advice is crap, when you were the one asking for it.
  9. smiley27

    smiley27

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    Re-read the first sentence of the second post in this thread which babs posted. What does it say?
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2012
  10. thaman91

    thaman91

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    It's all about peaking at the right time. Think about it this way: you could address your "problem" now and get really good at verbal right now. But just like exercising a muscle, if you stop training then the muscle begins to get smaller. Similarly, if you use up all the best practice material now, your verbal skill may be great at the moment, but will begin to decline due to lack of any more really good new practice material. I know you said you'll buy stuff from other companies, but the truth of the matter is that ek101 and tprh are the best out there and anything else will not give you as accurate a representation of the real mcat (except the official FL's of course). It's like training for a long time with 50lb dumbbells and then reducing the weight to 30lb; the muscle will get smaller. It's best to save ek101/tprh for a few months before the mcat so that you peak at the right time.
  11. SN2ed

    SN2ed Moderator

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    I agree with everyone that says you should completely stop taking verbal passages. You're wasting an incredibly limited resource. Even if you improved right now, without daily verbal practice (roughly 3 passages everyday) closer to your test date, your score will quickly decrease. Heck, there's barely enough passages for even that.

    Instead, focus on reading various articles and distilling the main idea and author's point of view. Then, try to think up some questions based on the passage. Furthermore, analyzing articles IS addressing your problem. Conversely, wasting verbal passages now will only compound your problems later on.
  12. smiley27

    smiley27

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    Guys, I said that I stopped doing EK101. I'm not even doing tprh verbal workbook! I'm doing the in class compendium which isn't even talked about on here.

    Everyone's advice is so stupid it's ridiculous. I'm doing poorly in verbal so I should stop practicing? I realize that there are valuable resources which I should save until it's closer to test time but I'm not even using them right now. I'm doing the compendium for practice which many of you haven't heard of. Assume I will not touch ek101 or tprh workbook until next year! I will use other material to practice.

    I asked advice on how to correct my deficiency. Is stopping verbal practice going to correct that deficiency?
  13. thaman91

    thaman91

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    Saying that you stopped doing Ek101 full lengths does not mean you stopped using ek101, especially when you said one sentence later that you are instead focusing on single untimed passages. Then you asked if you should continue carrying along like this, which is why people have said you shouldn't because it would waste practice material. Word your post better instead of calling people's advice stupid. And no, you shouldn't stop practicing, you should instead change your approach by focusing on reading more in general.
  14. davidb25

    davidb25

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    Stop wasting resources and start concerning yourself with the motives of authors of your favorite news stories and journal articles.
  15. smiley27

    smiley27

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    Was this not clear enough? Who deduces that my quote would lead someone to believe I continued with EK101 material?
  16. 09ine

    09ine

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    Just read news articles and quiz yourself on if you got the main points out of it and know the tone the author had. It's the next best thing to doing practice passages. You don't have to listen to anybody here, but if you post in the future asking for more resources because you ran out, nobody will help you.
  17. BABSstudent

    BABSstudent Established Member

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    I said to stop doing verbal passages.

    Now reread the first sentence of the last paragraph in the same quote. Start reading other material! Getting used to reading new things and mapping it will help you with comprehension and abilities to work through tough MCAT passages.

    Or you can keep saying we are giving you crap advice and ignore it. Go ahead, do all your passages and then work with inferior passages when you go to the actual test. I think you will burn out before the actual studying begins and you will lower your overall score.
  18. dontdothat317

    dontdothat317

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    You should stop doing MCAT verbal passages out of the workbooks. :thumbup:

    Read:
    The Economist
    The Atlantic
    The New Yorker
    Scientific American
    The New Yorker
    Philosophy Now
    etc.

    Start practicing active reading. That is 70% of doing better on verbal. You are not getting the right logical argument out of what you're reading in your passages and that's your first problem.

    Also the In class compendium (ICC) is best used in a class as it was designed to be used, because it lacks explanations to answer choices. Dont even bother doing passages if you can't UNDERSTAND the LOGIC of why the answer is right and why YOUR logic was wrong.
  19. V5RED

    V5RED MS-0

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    You are right. Everyone but you is stupid.

    Why did you even bother posting your question if you aren't interested in any reply that does not tell you to keep doing what you had already decided you would do?


    Anyways, here is another iteration of the aforementioned advice that you have already blasted.

    The reading part of your brain is basically very out of shape and you are yelling at it to go run a marathon and then getting frustrated when it fails.

    The practice passages are aimed at people with above average reading comprehension skills. Yours are below average. You need to read books to improve your reading skills so that you can then get some use out of practice passages once you are closer to your exam time(ie not over a year away).

    You should probably start with easy stuff to read like Harry Potter and then move to more adult stuff like the Dark Tower series by Stephen King. I suggest avoiding junk like the Twilight series(I read the first 2.5 books, so I can confidently say that they are very poorly written and the people who converted that crap into enjoyable movies deserve a freaking medal).
  20. shaboobly

    shaboobly

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    Re read the bold print I used the first time from babs quote. Instead of being stubborn and ignorant, take our advice and use it. If not, then you can do poorly on the exam and we will not care. Lete reiterate: WE WILL NOT CARE. :smuggrin:
  21. sciencebooks

    sciencebooks

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    Why not take the other suggestion as well and read the verbal prep books -- question types to look out for, traps, etc.? A lot of the time, they have a practice problem thrown in the mix so you can visualize/practice the concepts.

    Also, if you really want to practice verbal, I've seen in suggested that people use LSAT verbal materials.
  22. TieuBachHo

    TieuBachHo

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    You may be pretty good at VR without actually knowing it LOL j/k. Do you somewhat understand the passage at all after reading it? Some questions require you to go back to reread a couple of lines but it's not that often. Don't slow down but try to read even faster b/c you're gonna need it. After each paragraph, ask yourself, what the hell did I just read? After finishing a whole passage, what's that one thing that the author trying to convince/inform me? Most of them may seem to be written in non-sense but they all have points. Keep asking questions like "I asked advice on how to correct my deficiency. Is stopping verbal practice going to correct that deficiency?", and that's what VR all about. Reason yourself out of wrong answer choices until you are left with a best one.

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