Nov 23, 2010
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Hey guys,
How can i do better on verbal? I have used Dr Collins and have memorized alot of the gre top 300. what else can i do? my vocabulary isnt all that big. any strategies and or advice would help alot. thanks
 
Apr 16, 2009
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Don't take this as sarcasm, but you need to read more to bring up your scores in verbal. Read everything you can: magazines, books, scholarly journals, newspapers. Make reading a daily habit. Listen to news on the radio (programs like those on NPR are good).

Verbal isn't about straight memorization; it's about familiarity and comfort with the English language in its various forms.
 
Apr 16, 2009
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One other idea I forgot to mention: Merriam Webster's website has a Word of the Day email (Google M-W Word of the Day). It's usually pretty interesting and a good way to learn new vocabulary words, too. Vocab is a lifelong fight!

(ps. Today's M-W word is plangent. I'd never heard of it before...)
 
Oct 18, 2010
14
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Pre-Pharmacy
I also used Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day....you can set it up to where you are emailed the word of the day. My advisor told me to do that, and it actually helped. Using Dr. Collins also, my verbal went from somewhere in the 30's to the 70's...so not bad
 
Nov 29, 2010
150
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Pharmacy Student
I bought a Miller's Analogy Book. This really helped me prepare for the analogy portion of the verbal subtest.
 

dudecoolname

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Nov 9, 2009
380
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Pre-Pharmacy
I read quite often..but do I really need to know words like:

Choleric
sybaritic
quixotic
hackneyed
cherubic

?

Im only looking at Kaplan book right now, and honestly...I hope they are exaggerating. Are we really expected to know all of these extremely uncommon words?
 

ChEStud

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Jan 17, 2010
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I read quite often..but do I really need to know words like:

Choleric
sybaritic
quixotic
hackneyed
cherubic

?

Im only looking at Kaplan book right now, and honestly...I hope they are exaggerating. Are we really expected to know all of these extremely uncommon words?
That is what I'm wondering too. Any insight would be very helpful from previous PCAT test takers.
 
Apr 16, 2009
597
3
Status
I read quite often..but do I really need to know words like:

Choleric
sybaritic
quixotic
hackneyed
cherubic

?

Im only looking at Kaplan book right now, and honestly...I hope they are exaggerating. Are we really expected to know all of these extremely uncommon words?
The last three are quite common. I would definitely know them.

(with quixotic, remember it refers to Don Quixote...and if you know the general theme of the novel ['tilting at windmills'] you have an idea of the meaning of the word)
 

xNeenax

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Apr 19, 2011
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I'm also having trouble with the verbal section. I memorized some words from my Kaplan PCAT flashcards but I constantly have to study them each and every day because after two days I forget them.

I'm going to take the advice of the previous posters and I'm going to try to read more. However, the only outside readings I've read are Harry Potter and Series of Unfortunate Events, which I haven't finished. I have never actually read articles before.
Where can I find free articles and journals online and what articles do you recommend?
 

owlegrad

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I'm also having trouble with the verbal section. I memorized some words from my Kaplan PCAT flashcards but I constantly have to study them each and every day because after two days I forget them.

I'm going to take the advice of the previous posters and I'm going to try to read more. However, the only outside readings I've read are Harry Potter and Series of Unfortunate Events, which I haven't finished. I have never actually read articles before.
Where can I find free articles and journals online and what articles do you recommend?
I doubt reading articles with an untrained eye will net you much benefit. Not to mention, it is going to be boring.
 

xNeenax

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Apr 19, 2011
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I doubt reading articles with an untrained eye will net you much benefit. Not to mention, it is going to be boring.

Really? so I guess I should just try my hardest and memorize as many words as I can.
 

owlegrad

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Really? so I guess I should just try my hardest and memorize as many words as I can.
I really have no advice for someone who needs to improve this skill quickly. If you had more time I would say learn to love reading and trying to develop your ability to think critically of what you have read. In a short span of time I doubt it is possible to significantly improve vocabulary or reading ability.

Good Luck. :luck:
 

chemguy79

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I doubt reading articles with an untrained eye will net you much benefit. Not to mention, it is going to be boring.
EXACTLY. Reading is frequently doled out as the advice to improve RC, but it's horrible advice. You need to learn how to decipher the information, therefore, studying the questions that are asked via Pearson's Practice exams is the best way to improve your skill. I was scoring rather mediocre on the RC practice exams until I studied the questions and ended up scoring an 84 on the RC.

As for Verbal, memorize vocab words and suck it up. If you manage to remember any of it after the exam, then use those words in your personal statement. :)
 

owlegrad

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EXACTLY. Reading is frequently doled out as the advice to improve RC, but it's horrible advice. You need to learn how to decipher the information, therefore, studying the questions that are asked via Pearson's Practice exams is the best way to improve your skill. I was scoring rather mediocre on the RC practice exams until I studied the questions and ended up scoring an 84 on the RC.

As for Verbal, memorize vocab words and suck it up. If you manage to remember any of it after the exam, then use those words in your personal statement. :)
I think it is good advice, depending on the time frame. I mean being an avid reader is what got me a high RC score for sure, I did no special prep for that section. But if your time frame is like a month or two, no I don't think just reading is going to be enough to do much at all.What can such a small amount of reading really do and without a critical eye how much help will it be? Much more likely the reader will just get frustrated. In that case study yeah study the RC questions and try to learn to figure out what they are looking for and how to answer them.
 

thesituation559

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Jul 21, 2011
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EXACTLY. Reading is frequently doled out as the advice to improve RC, but it's horrible advice. You need to learn how to decipher the information, therefore, studying the questions that are asked via Pearson's Practice exams is the best way to improve your skill. I was scoring rather mediocre on the RC practice exams until I studied the questions and ended up scoring an 84 on the RC.

As for Verbal, memorize vocab words and suck it up. If you manage to remember any of it after the exam, then use those words in your personal statement. :)
That's exactly what I am doing for RC. I scored horribly on the 2 pearson practice test that I did. A strategy that is working better for me is reading the 6-7 questions and then reading the passage. By studying the RC on the test you get an idea on how they want you to answer the question. I'm going to take the third pearson practice test in a couple of weeks and feel like my score should improve in this section.

For verbal I'm just doing dr collins and top 300 gre. I really hope this helps. On the practice test on pearson, the two that I have done I am averaging 40-60 percentile which is really worrying me :(
 
Aug 3, 2011
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I used Dr. Collins practice tests and those worked very well for me for verbal. I took the tests and made flashcards of all the words I did not know. I got a 99.
 

krishna1990

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Sep 2, 2010
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When you say collins helped you for va does that mean memorizing his vocabs and analogies helped? Or how else did you study for this?

I used Dr. Collins practice tests and those worked very well for me for verbal. I took the tests and made flashcards of all the words I did not know. I got a 99.
 

JonPrePharmD

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Apr 7, 2011
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My advice for RC....take your time with the articles, but not too much time.

I had a problem with how I wanted to handle RC once I saw the length of the essays on the real PCAT and the type of questions...I rushed through most of it due to panic and that was my downfall.

I'd say even if you don't finish all 6 essays, at least you took your time on the first 4 and answered accurately. I panicked, skipped around, read the questions first then the essay. I should have stuck to my original idea to read each essay first then answer the questions.


As far as VA...study Dr. Collin's verbal analogies, you can find them online with a google search I believe...