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# Sneak Peek: New GMAT Official Guide 13th Edition Math

Advance copies of the 13th edition of the GMAT Official Guide (turquoise cover) have been released.

## Changes in Problems Used

The vast majority of the math questions in the 12th edition Official Guide appear verbatim but in a different order, than in the 13th edition.  Here’s a list of questions in the OG 12 that have not been reused in the OG 13:

Problem Solving

2, 5, 18, 42, 46, 47, 48, 51, 52, 53, 55, 56, 59, 73, 74, 81, 86, 87, 88, 89, 91, 107, 111, 117, 148, 151, 163, 178, 179, 180, 181, 182, 183*, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 191, 197, 199, 203, 220, 227.

Data Sufficiency

13, 16, 17, 18, 19*, 22, 26, 27, 28, 32*, 33, 36, 41, 42, 45, 46, 48, 53, 59, 62, 66, 71, 72, 75, 76, 79, 82, 90, 91, 94, 98, 110, 141, 148, 164*, 170.

*indicates a question that has not be used verbatim, but which seems to have served as the inspiration for a new question in the OG 13.

## New GMAT Math Trends

The questions removed cover a wide range of topics, as do the new questions added, so it’s really impossible to say much that would encapsulate all the changes.

I notice two trends.  First, there seems to be increased attention to some slightly more sophisticated algebra, including recognition and use of the difference of two squares pattern:

The second seems to be increased attention to number properties — already a huge topic.  In particular, there is some new focus on decimals and patterns involving decimals.

## Integrated Reasoning

Just so everyone is clear: the printed copy of new book, the OG 13, does not have IR problems.  The printed OG 13 has a short 11 page overview the IR question format.  Interestingly, their section on Graphics Interpretation includes a couple new types of charts not mentioned on the original GMAC website posting information on this question.  These include

1) bubble charts — this is a kind of a scatterplot which, instead of points or dots, has circles of varying radii — the radii of the circles indicate a third variable independent of the x- and y-axis.  The Wikipedia article has a few good images: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bubble_chart

2) flow charts — these charts show steps in a process, and what to do given different decisions at different points in the process.  Here are a couple humor flow charts, one on learning how to cook (http://xkcd.com/854/), one giving a humorous generalization of tech support (http://xkcd.com/627/) and one simply on understanding flow charts (http://xkcd.com/518/)

3) organization chart — these show the levels of a hierarchy: who’s on the same level as who, and who’s above/below who.  Here’s the organization chart for the US government, in case you were curious: http://www.netage.com/economics/gov/Gov-chart-top.html

Again, there are no practice IR questions in the print version of the 13th edition of the Official Guide.  Each copy of the 13th edition comes with a code that gives the user access to GMAC’s companion website with 50 IR questions.

As always, what’s the best way to prepare for this?  With Magoosh, you will get all the content & strategy you need in video form, 800+ practice questions, each with its own video explanation, and responsive support for any questions you have.

Mike McGarry is a Content Developer for Magoosh with over 20 years of teaching experience and a BS in Physics and an MA in Religion, both from Harvard. He enjoys hitting foosballs into orbit, and despite having no obvious cranial deficiency, he insists on rooting for the NY Mets.

### 4 Responses to Sneak Peek: New GMAT Official Guide 13th Edition Math

1. Dee April 2, 2012 at 7:50 am #

Although only 20% of the questions in this book have been updates, you do have access to 50 of the new section questions (although you have to access a separate site for these).

I have heard much criticism that again this book does not cover hard enough questions for anyone seeking 700+. What is your view on this?

• Mike April 3, 2012 at 1:58 pm #

Dee: I don’t know. I think that criticism is unwarranted, either for OG12 or for OG13. My sense is: as you work through the OG, if you can get the hardest questions of each question type correct, you are going to be in very good shape for the exam. If you want to drill nothing but 700+ questions, then the OG might not be the thing for you, true — after all, the OG is designed to help a broad swath of people at the middle of the Bell Curve, not cater specifically and exclusively to the needs of the superstars. If that’s what you seek, then you need either something highly flexible that will adapt to your needs, like Magoosh, or something geared specifically to high achievers, like some sections of the MGMAT books.

On your other question: yes, I have access to those 50 IR questions, and I am currently working through them. They are tough. I will post something about them in a couple weeks.
Mike

• N April 10, 2012 at 12:11 pm #

Yikes, the IR questions are tough!? Looking forward to your post about IR. New sections tend to take a while to warm up to I guess. Tough luck for those of us signed up to take the test soon after the change of format!

• Mike April 10, 2012 at 3:40 pm #

N: Yes, in a couple weeks, I’ll post about the IR questions. I would not worry too much — yes, study the released material as it comes out, but don’t worry about the tough luck of taking the exam after the change in format. First of all, if the IR questions are tough, they’ll be tough for everyone, and the way the exam is curved will reflect that. Furthermore, GMAC will be giving experimental IR sections to selected users between now and June, so they will have plenty of questions “calibrated” by the time of the change. Finally, GMAC has some expert statisticians, and they will make sure that a grade after the change in format means the same thing as the same grade before the change in format.
Mike

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