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# Strategy Pages (by ETS) - Value?

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Strategy Pages (by ETS) - Value? [#permalink]  11 Jan 2019, 06:35
Hi all. If I am posting in the incorrect subforum, please let me know. (I am trying to adhere to the 12 Rules for Posting). Here is my question:

How worthwhile are the official strategy-related materials provided by ETS?

For example, take something like "Strategy 9: Estimate". (I would provide a link, but I've been a forum member for less than 5 days, so I am unable to).

In their solution explanation (to the second sample question), the first sentence reads, "Scanning the answer choices indicates that you can do at least some estimation and still answer confidently."

The authors present this particular observation as self-evident, but to me---as a newbie---it doesn't seem self-evident. Moreover, the whole reason I'm reviewing this page in the first place is to get a better sense of how/when to utilize the stategy of "estimation", yet it doesn't seem---to me, at least---that the authors provide much in terms of clarity or explanation.

As a result, I didn't find this page ("Strategy 9: Estimate") all that helpful. I guess what I'm wondering is whether or not this page is representative of most of the other official ETS GRE prep materials, at least with regards to strategies and tactics.
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Re: Strategy Pages (by ETS) - Value? [#permalink]  11 Jan 2019, 07:08
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jjsomanytabs wrote:
(I would provide a link, but I've been a forum member for less than 5 days, so I am unable to).

https://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general ... solving/9/
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Re: Strategy Pages (by ETS) - Value? [#permalink]  11 Jan 2019, 20:58
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It is a good question - the official guides for both GRE and GMAT offer little help and value in preparing to the test. They provide probably bare minimum coverage and frankly, drive more confusion than value. I would wish that GRE/ETS would simply say - we ain't got no help for you so here are the official questions and here are some other resources you can use instead of pretending they are trying to help.

I would not waste my time going around the ETS.org and instead look at MGRE, Kaplan, obviously GRE Prep Club and esp the Magoosh blog - it seems to have lots of relevant tips but keep in mind that the tips/blog posts/help you are likely to find online will be more of a preview or a showcase of what the full product/course/book contain and thus will not be comprehensive in nature. I would recommend getting one of the prep books https://greprepclub.com/forum/best-gre-books-7/ to give you a complete overview as well as strategies to approach questions. You will save yourself a lot of effort and headache.

Good Luck!
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Re: Strategy Pages (by ETS) - Value? [#permalink]  12 Jan 2019, 05:59
Thanks for the detailed feeback. Much appreciated. Yeah, for strategy methods and tips, I've already been reviewing other sources (e.g. GRE Prep Club, Manhattan Prep blog posts, etc), but---going forward, given your feedback / confirmation---I'll definitely skip any of the other offical ETS strategy pages and just utlize ETS for official practice questions. Thanks again.
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Re: Strategy Pages (by ETS) - Value? [#permalink]  27 Jan 2019, 09:37
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Hi jjsomanytabs.

While you have gotten the answer to your specific question, it seems worth adding that while learning certain GRE quant tips or tricks can be helpful, strategies and tricks can take you only so far. You also need to ensure that you learn and understand the quant concepts on which GRE quant questions are based. By doing so, you will learn the RIGHT WAY to attack and efficiently solve problems, and thus, in many cases you won’t have to rely on trick. And, even when you do rely on strategies, you will apply them more effectively if you understand the math that underlies what you are doing.

Let me provide you with an example:

14! is equal to which of the following?

(A) 87,178,291,200
(B) 88,180,293,207
(C) 89,181,294,209
(D) 90,000,000,003
(E) 91,114,114,114

Upon seeing this question, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Grabbing a calculator to add up the values in the expression? Or are you able to quickly recognize that using the “5 x 2 pair rule” will allow you to efficiently attack the problem?

Solution:

14! = 14 × 13 × 12 × 11 × 10 × 9 × 8 × 7 × 6 × 5 × 4 × 3 × 2 × 1.

Notice that there is at least one (5 × 2) pair contained in the product of these numbers. It follows that the units digit must be a zero. The only number with zero as the units digit is 87,178,291,200.

Although this is just one example of many, you see that by understanding the rule of trailing zeros (not necessarily relying on a trick or hack), you would have been able to easily solve this question, right?
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Re: Strategy Pages (by ETS) - Value? [#permalink]  29 Jan 2019, 07:52
Thanks for the additional feedback, ScottTargetTestPrep. Really appreciate it.

I don't disagree you. At this stage, I'm trying NOT to focus on "tips and tricks"---at least not yet---and instead spend time on fundamentals. I guess I just figured that an official ETS strategy page would qualify as a worthwhile, "fundamental" text. But, as I said, I didn't find it to be very helpful (at all).

Thus far (i.e. over the past month), I've mainly been working my way through the "Math Review" pdf (by ETS) and supplementing that with other sources (MathIsFunDOTcom, etc). Am not sure if I'm progressing in the most efficient manner, but I do feel like I'm achieving a good sense of the fundamental concepts (underlying the Quant sections of the test).
Re: Strategy Pages (by ETS) - Value?   [#permalink] 29 Jan 2019, 07:52
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