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Restructuring Magoosh Sentence Correction

At Magoosh, we are constantly looking for ways to make our product better.  Recently, we have been making changes in the Sentence Correction portion of our product.   Our SC lesson videos had been organized primarily by areas of grammar, but of course, the GMAT Sentence Correction questions are about much more than grammar.  We recently decided to use the OG’s own Sentence Correction categories as our SC organizing principle.

The eight categories

In the OG13, at the very beginning of the Sentence Correction section, the OG has a short section in which it lists the eight concept areas that the Sentence Correction questions test.  Here are the eight concept areas, from pp. 665-669 of the OG13:

1) Verb Form (tenses, mood, voice, participles, gerunds, infinitives)

2) Agreement (noun-verb, antecedent-pronoun)

3) Grammatical Construction (ways in which long sentences can be organized)

4) Parallelism (one of the GMAT’s favorites!)

5) Logical Predication (misplaced modifiers, faulty comparisons, etc.; does the sentence actually say what the author is obviously trying to say?)

6) Diction (individual word use, e.g. less vs. fewer, because vs. due to, etc.)

7) Idioms (combinations of words, for example unique [verb]+[preposition] combinations)

8) Rhetorical Construction (does the sentence convey its message in the most effective way?  concise, clear, direct, powerful, no ambiguity, no redundancy, etc.)

Here’s what our SC lesson layout looks like now:

sc lessons

Click here if you want to watch some of the sample videos yourself!

Our order, different from the OG’s order, reflect our views on the proper pedagogical treatment of the topics.

We made this change because our previous focus on grammar points did not properly capture the questions we have that, like questions in the OG, focus on issue of logic, diction, idiom, or rhetoric.  In many ways, if you had to sum up what the GMAT Sentence Correction is about, the term “logical organization” would in many ways be more apt than the word “grammar.”  Our new categories reflect this.  These categories are now the “subject categories” for our Sentence Correction, which means Magoosh users can choose to practice question from any of these eight categories.

Viewing our product through this lens, we also have re-classified & re-organized our existing 39 Sentence Correction video lessons, and we have started adding more.  Over the next few months, we will more than double our number of Sentence Correction video lessons, covering all the details of each of these eight conceptual regions.

Let us know what you think, or if you have any suggestions. Happy studying! 🙂

By the way, sign up for our 1 Week Free Trial to try out Magoosh GMAT Prep!

4 Responses to Restructuring Magoosh Sentence Correction

  1. Liz G October 14, 2013 at 1:40 pm #

    I plan on buying the 13th edition OG tonight to follow your one month plan. Is there an updated study guide yet with the 13th edition pages listed?

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike October 14, 2013 at 2:18 pm #

      Dear Liz,
      We purposely created those study plans without specific page numbers, so a student using an earlier edition with slightly different page numbers still could follow the plan. I realize it may seem overwhelming at first, but once you get the layout of the OG, it’s very easy to find the sections you need. I do suggest using several bookmarks to mark places in the book.
      Does this make sense?
      Mike 🙂

  2. Carlos May 15, 2013 at 5:08 pm #

    Are you updating the study plans to keep them in line with this new breakdown?

    • Mike MᶜGarry
      Mike May 15, 2013 at 5:35 pm #

      Good question. Right now, we are in the process of recording and uploading videos — when we upload a batch, we ask for feedback from users before we proceed. It will take a few months to complete this project. Once the project is done, we will update this study plans. Between now and then, users will have to estimate how many videos to watch at each sitting to get through the module. Does this make sense?
      Mike 🙂

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