Having a Plan

Note: This is the second entry of a series on preventing careless mistakes. ¬†To start at the beginning, scroll down to the first entry, “Preventing Careless Mistakes”.

Outline a general plan that you will use for every problem.

A good general problem-solving plan for a GMAT math problem looks something like this:

1. Read the problem carefully.
2. Solve the problem, double-checking each step as you go, and mark the answer.
3. Reread the problem and make sure your solution is exactly what the question is asking for. Also look for any details you may  have missed the first time that would impact the solution.
4. Check that you marked the answer you intended to.
5. Submit your answer.

Read. Solve. Reread. Check. Submit.

Some of these steps are obvious; you probably won’t forget to read the problem or submit your answer. But keeping the complete framework in your mind as you solve problems will help you remember to do the important steps. Repeat it in your mind consciously until it becomes second nature.

Read. Solve. Reread. Check. Submit.

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