Math Mechanic

Recent Posts

Business School Admissions: MBA Worth the Price Tag?

Posted by Math Mechanic on 5/9/13 9:52 AM

Business school hopefuls tend to be most stressed about two daunting prospects: getting a great GMAT score and paying the cost of tuition for a great school.

The best schools in the country cost upwards of $140,000, not including living expenses. Factor in the fact that these schools are in expensive big cities like New York, Boston, Chicago, and Philadelphia, and the two years of business school can easily cost upwards of $200,000.

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Tags: MBA admissions

Academic Tutor's Tips: Finals Countdown

Posted by Math Mechanic on 5/7/13 10:50 AM

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Tags: study skills, college

GMAT Tutoring & Business School Admissions: The week before the test

Posted by Math Mechanic on 2/26/13 6:52 PM

The final few days before the GMAT are the most critical for prospective MBA applicants.

As a GMAT tutor, I can tell you that far too many students underappreciate the importance of the lead-up to the exam. Given the considerable time and resources spent on preparation, applicants must be willing to finish strong by sacrificing their social lives, discretionary income, and possibly even their reputations at work, to make these last few days as productive as possible.

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Tags: MBA admissions, GMAT

Business School Admissions: An MBA is Only as Good as Your Plans For It

Posted by Math Mechanic on 2/6/13 9:10 AM

Higher education is getting bad reviews lately. National media lament the high costs and seemingly low returns of advanced degrees – even those that have traditionally stapled a higher paycheck to one’s diploma (metaphorically).

Business schools in particular are criticized for this seeming disconnect. Various traditional career outlets are shrinking their hiring pools or turning a blind eye to expensive MBA applicants altogether. Meanwhile, examples abound of drop-outs earning billions of dollars in romanticized entrepreneurial pursuits.

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Tags: MBA admissions, business

GMAT Tutor: Three Simple Steps to GMAT Probability Questions

Posted by Math Mechanic on 1/8/13 10:59 AM

Probability is one of the trickier subject areas for GMAT students and tutors alike. As hard as it is for GMAT test takers to learn the ins and outs of combinatorics, for example, it is just as hard for tutors to justify precious preparation time focused on such a narrow and complicated subject.  On an average GMAT, students will see at most five to seven probability problems, not nearly the number of algebra or geometry problems, to use two other more common subject areas. 

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Tags: GMAT

Does success on the GMAT predict success in MBA classes?

Posted by Math Mechanic on 12/18/12 1:09 PM

Most business schools have a core curriculum that is heavily tilted toward quantitative subjects.

Nearly all schools require graduating students to be proficient in basic finance, accounting, economics, and statistics, for example.  Many MBAs often speculate that a student’s GMAT score is highly correlated with his or her GPA once at business school. Though this theory seems merited in many respects, it has limitations. However, weighing these counterpoints against affirming evidence, it is clear that MBA applicants must take GMAT preparation seriously not only to gain acceptance to an elite business school, but also to succeed academically once there.

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Tags: GMAT, business

Business School Admissions: A Great GMAT Score Pays Dividends

Posted by Math Mechanic on 12/10/12 9:30 AM

Most MBA applicants put considerable emphasis on their GMAT preparation in order to get into the best schools.

Though the GMAT score is an important aspect of the application, it is just one part of a person’s overall “story” in business school admissions; a great score will not guarantee access to a great school. However, success on the GMAT has additional benefits unrelated to admission. MBA hopefuls should be aware of these continuing “dividends,” and keep them in mind as additional motivators when preparing for the test.

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Tags: MBA admissions, GMAT, business

Is the Quantitative section most important on the GMAT?

Posted by Math Mechanic on 11/29/12 9:30 AM

As a longtime GMAT tutor, I can’t exaggerate enough how many times I’ve heard this question. The answer is, of course, the two most commonly used words in a business school classroom: It depends…

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Tags: GMAT

GMAT Tutor Tips: How to Approach a GMAT Critical Reasoning Question

Posted by Math Mechanic on 11/15/12 9:27 AM


Having been a private tutor for many GMAT test takers, I consider Critical Reasoning to be the section of the test that gives students the most trouble.

However, I have found that my students improve quickly in this section by following a very simple method. Namely, students should answer Critical Reasoning questions following a three-step hypothesis-driven approach.

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Tags: GMAT

Part 2: LSAT Test Preparation & Your Brain

Posted by Math Mechanic on 10/30/12 12:42 PM

This post is a follow up in which I posed the question ‘Can Prepping for Entrance Exams Make Ya Smarter?  According to a recent study conducted at The University of California at Berkeley, this is certainly true with the LSAT.  Given this finding, it would be interesting to explore how the LSAT is structured, the types of questions asked and how a good round or two of preparation might make one’s brains sharper.

The Bones of the LSAT

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Tags: LSAT