Grammar Order of Operations: Prioritizing GMAT Sentence Correction Rules - Videos

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In “Grammar Order of Operations: Prioritizing GMAT Sentence Correction Rules”, Erika John from PrepScholar GMAT walks through which GMAT grammar rules are most important and how to ensure you’re not ruling out a correct answer for an unimportant reason.

I spend a lot of time on GMAT forums, and one thing I see all the time is test takers ruling out their first few wrong answer choices based on something like an ambiguous pronoun. Nobody ever told them that some GMAT Sentence Correction rules are more important than others! In fact, some GMAT Sentence Correction “rules”, are more like “suggestions” — some things that test takers consider “errors” are only wrong if there aren’t any worse errors in the other answer choices.

So how do we ensure that we’re eliminating the most egregious errors first and saving the less important errors for last? Just like math has PEMDAS, there is an order of operations for GMAT grammar rules.

When we eliminate wrong answer choices on SC questions, we should rule out answers based on GMAT Sentence Correction rules in the following order:

1) Meaning Errors
2) Hard Grammar Errors
3) Rhetoric Errors

This means that if we notice a rhetorical issue (like an ambiguous pronoun), we should wait to eliminate the answer until we are sure that there are no more meaning or hard grammar errors in any of the other answer choices.

In the video, we walk through the different kinds of errors in GMAT Sentence Correction rules that fall into each category — such as misplaced modifiers, parallelism, concision, etc. We also discuss why Idiom and Diction Errors can sometimes fall into either the Hard Grammar category of GMAT grammar rules *or* the Rhetoric category, and why this means test takers need to be especially careful with them.

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