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The Official Guide for GMAT Review, 12th Edition 12th Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 169 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0470449745
ISBN-10: 0470449748
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Product Description

The Official Guide for GMAT Review, 12th Edition
is the only book on the market written by the creators of the GMAT exam. Inside you’ll find more than 800 actual GMAT questions from previous tests with answers and detailed explanations. There’s also a grammar review, math review, actual essay topics, sample responses, and scoring information insights into the GMAT exam that debunk test-taking myths. Plus, use the diagnostic section to pinpoint your skill level and focus on the areas where you need the most help.

Top Myths About the GMAT®

Myth – If I don’t score in the 90th percentile, I won’t get into any school I choose.

Fact – Very few people get very high scores.

Fewer than 50 of the more than 200,000 people taking the GMAT test each year get a perfect score of 800. Thus, while you may be exceptionally capable, the odds are against your achieving a perfect score. Also, the GMAT test is just one piece of your application packet. Admissions officers use GMAT scores in conjunction with undergraduate records, application essays, interviews, letters of recommendation, and other information when deciding whom to accept into their programs.

Myth – Getting an easier question means I answered the last one wrong.

Fact – Getting an easier question does not necessarily mean you got the previous question wrong.

To ensure that everyone receives the same content, the test selects a specific number of questions of each type. The test may call for your next question to be a relatively hard problem-solving item involving arithmetic operations. But, if there are no more relatively difficult problem-solving items involving arithmetic, you might be given an easier item.

Most people are not skilled at estimating item difficulty, so don’t worry when taking the test or waste valuable time trying to determine the difficulty of the questions you are answering.

Myth – You need very advanced math skills to get a high GMAT score.

Fact – The math skills questions on the GMAT test are quite basic.

The GMAT test only requires basic quantitative analytic skills. You should review the math skills (algebra, geometry, basic arithmetic) presented in both The Official Guide for GMAT® Quantitative Review, 2nd Edition, and in The Official Guide for GMAT® Review, 12th Edition, but the required skill level is low. The difficulty of GMAT Quantitative questions stems from the logic and analysis used to solve the problems and not the underlying math skills.

Myth – It is more important to respond correctly to the test questions than it is to finish the test.

Fact – There is a severe penalty for not completing the GMAT test.

If you are stumped by a question, give it your best guess and move on. If you guess incorrectly, the computer program will likely give you an easier question, which you are likely to answer correctly, and the computer will rapidly return to giving you questions matched to your ability. If you don’t finish the test, your score will be reduced greatly. Failing to answer five verbal questions, for example, could reduce your score from the 91st percentile to the 77th percentile. Pacing is important.

Myth –The first 10 questions are critical and you should invest the most time on those.

Fact – All questions count.

It is true that the computer-adaptive testing algorithm uses the first 10 questions to obtain an initial estimate of your ability; however, that is only an initial estimate. As you continue to answer questions, the algorithm self-corrects by computing an updated estimate on the basis of all the questions you have answered, and then administers items that are closely matched to this new estimate of your ability. Your final score is based on all your responses and considers the difficulty of all the questions you answered. Taking additional time on the first 10 questions will not game the system and can hurt your ability to finish the test.

Myth – I need to speak US English in order to do well on the GMAT.

Fact- Essay grading is not affected by dialect of English. Questions on the GMAT are evaluated to ensure they are fair for all examinees, whether in the US or around the world.

From the Back Cover

Trust the worldwide bestselling study guide to help you prepare for the GMAT!

Here's what you'll find inside the only book on the market written by the creators of the exam.

  • More than 800 actual questions from past GMAT tests—300 of which have never before been published
  • Full answers and detailed explanations for all questions

  • Grammar review covering concepts tested on the GMAT Verbal section

  • Comprehensive math review of the topics tested on the GMAT Quantitative section

  • Actual essay topics, sample responses, and scoring information

  • Questions organized in order of difficulty to save study time

Visit www.mba.com to:

  • Get 2 free downloadable tests and practice questions
  • Sign up for the GMAT Teasers, a weekly practice question

  • Register to take the GMAT exam


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 840 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 12th edition (March 23, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470449748
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470449745
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 1.3 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (169 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #261,041 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I started GMAT Club - online MBA community; my GMAT score is 750 (49, 42), and here are my thoughts about this book:

1. 907 real GMAT questions retired from past tests
2. Practice questions are organized by level of difficulty
3. Practice questions follow actual GMAT test patterns (it's great to have one's ear trained, esp. in verbal)
4. Contains a 100-question diagnostic test

1. Does not include any test-taking strategies
2. Though it has a few short review sections for each area, they are weak and very unfriendly
3. Questions are predominantly low to medium in difficulty which is often not representative of questions one encounters on the test
4. There is a 66% overlap with the previous version (11th edition)

Contents (number of questions per section):
1. Diagnostic Test - 100 questions
2. Problem Solving - 230 questions
3. Data Sufficiency - 174 questions
4. Reading Comprehension - 139 questions
5. Critical Reasoning - 124 questions
6. Sentence Correction - 140 questions

* Why is this book valuable/must-have?
The Official Guide is published by the creators of the GMAT and therefore it is the only source of actual GMAT questions representative of what you will see on the test.

* Why is the book not sufficient by itself?
This Guide contains only questions and lacks insightful information about the test, a math/verbal concept review section, or any test-taking strategies. To get up to speed, you will need to get a study guide such as Kaplan Premier Program or Princeton Review's Cracking the GMAT Cat.

* How should this book be used?
This book should NOT be used as a study-guide.
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28 Comments 670 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
After going through all the GMAT books, here is my comparison about some of the most popular GMAT books:

Official Guides:
Pros - Excellent source of GMAT questions. Very well organized with real test like questions.
Cons - No review of any math content or test-taking strategies. Not very good explanations of practice questions.
Overall, the Official Guide is a must have for all test-takers. It will give you a good idea about the type of questions to expect on the GMAT; however, if you need more than just a bank of questions, you need to look at some other source.

Pros - It covers every section of the test as much as possible by a single book. Also a good source for additional practice questions.
Cons - Review of math content is not thorough but just the very basics. Not enough explanation of test taking strategies. Full of guessing techniques with no real mathematical solutions. Not good enough explanations of practice questions. Unrealistic questions.

Pros - Good for learning how to make educated guess and process of elimination. Focuses more on test taking techniques.
Cons - Review of math content is not thorough but just the very basics. Not enough explanation of test taking strategies. Full of guessing techniques with no real mathematical solutions. Not good enough explanations of practice questions. Weird sense of humor of Joe Blogs.

Pros - Good book if you are looking for test taking strategies and brief overview as it covers every section. It's definitely worth the price.
Cons - Not a regular standalone type of a book. You'll certainly need additional help.

Pros - Intensive math review. Big list of questions. Good test taking strategies.
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5 Comments 189 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
The best approach for using the GMAT Official Guide:

The GMAT OG is a "must have" for everyone who intend to take the GMAT, but only if you use it the right way.

--Go through this book at the very beginning when you first start preparing for the GMAT.
--This will give you a good understanding of what you should expect to see when you take the actual test.

--If you feel you are 100% comfortable with all the concepts involved - go ahead and crack every question in this book and you'll be good to go.
--If you feel you lack some if not all of the concepts involved - keep this book aside, go through some of the other study guides, and then at the end come back to this book and answer every question.

--Buy the recommended books listed below.
--Take the official practice GMAT.

--If you feel, you still need more practice, consider browsing the internet to find any free questions you can lay your hands on.
--Once again take the free official practice test before your real test.

-Indisputably, one of the best GMAT books - if you want to know what types of questions can potentially pop up on the GMAT.
-Excellent source for practicing real test questions for all difficulty levels.

-No conceptual knowledge of any concept whatsoever.
-Answer explanations are fine, but not that methodical.

GMAT Books: If you are serious about getting a high score, I'd recommend doing the following:
-Buy the latest edition of OG.
-Buy Barron's book as this is one of the best all-in-one review book (except the CD).
-For Verbal Practice - consider Kaplan/PR Workbooks, and Dummies book.
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