Cutts GMAT Review
Personal, Full Service Guidance with MBA School Applications
With Jay Cutts, Lead Author, Barron's Test Prep Series
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Jay B. Cutts, MA with Distinction - Specializing in Graduate Exam Preparation
Dear Prospective Graduate Business Student,
Thank you for your inquiry regarding the CUTTS GMAT REVIEW. I realize that the GMAT is one of many barriers you will need to overcome, and overcome with excellence, in order to gain acceptance into your first choice MBA program. I encourage you to pursue your goal with passion and determination.
I wish I could tell you that mastering the GMAT will be easy. It will not. It will take a sustained effort on your part and on my part. But you will succeed. And, believe it or not, you may well enjoy the process.
The CUTTS GMAT REVIEW supports you in all aspects of taking the GMAT. As experienced educators, we will address any factors that may affect your score. Our task is to pass on to you the condensed experience of our years of research on graduate exams. Your efforts can then be focused exclusively on mastering the test.
Your success on the GMAT should not depend on gimmicks. In my experience, only an intimate, thorough understanding of the test will lead you to a winning score. All our resources are directed to this goal.
As an individual, you have a unique style by which you learn best. You will also have your own questions and concerns during your preparation. I will personally assist you in shaping our program to your individual strengths and needs.
In continually improving the CUTTS GMAT REVIEW, I draw on a number of graduate exam specialists whom I have found to be exceptionally talented in their test areas, as well as being dedicated and highly effective educators. While these fine women and men contribute to the program behind the scenes, you will gain points through the insights they have added.
One fact stands clear in my years of working with graduate exam takers. Success does not come to the faint hearted. Be bold! Be creative! Be fanatic, if necessary! Above all, you must find your way. Draw on any resource that speeds your progress. We are such a resource and we stand ready to match your enthusiasm with our own. Best wishes for your success.
Jay B. Cutts
CUTTS GRADUATE REVIEW
PS. Are your parents or relatives helping pay for your prep? Please send them the letter below between the askerisks.
Cutts Graduate Reviews
Dear Parent or Relative of a PreMBA Student,
As you decide the best way to support your family member in their preparation for business school, please feel free to contact me with any questions you might have.
I'd like to speak directly about GMAT preparation. You may not be familiar with my GMAT prep work. Undoubtedly you have heard of the large mass prep companies such as Princeton. You may have the impression that these companies - being large, well known and expensive - must offer the best prep.
Certainly the big companies have good intentions. However, by their very structure they have several very serious limitations. The most serious is that the instructors for these companies are hired people who, on the average, stay for one or two seasons. They are usually very bright and have often scored extremely well on the test. But they have very little experience teaching the GMAT and even less experience with issues such as timing strategy, test anxiety, individual and cultural learning styles and other strategies beyond the GMAT for getting accepted.
Mass prep programs often provide almost no personal attention outside of class, and very little in class. In my experience, personal attention is essential for each student to get what they need.
I have spoken with students who did well after taking a mass prep course. However, I have spoken with many more who did not get the help they needed. The biggest complaint is that when the student asks an instructor to explain exactly why one answer is better than another, the instructor says "This answer is just better" or "you just have to get the feel of it". This is not true. There is a reason why one answer is right and the other is dead wrong. But it can take years of teaching experience for a test specialist to understand this.
I have been teaching the GMAT and related tests since 1990. It is my full time work. I work with students not only in New Mexico but across the country and internationally. I personally work closely with each of my students as much as they need.
I encourage you to look into all the prep options. Ask to speak with the person who will teach the course. Find out their experience. How much personal attention will they provide? Please feel free to call me also. I'll be happy to go over the specifics of what the Cutts programs covers that the larger companies do not.
Jay B. Cutts (505) 281-0684 day or evening
(end of parents' letter)
Thank you for your interest in the Cutts GMAT Review. Our program offers in-depth strategies, mastery of timing and test anxiety, personal attention, longer programs and expert instruction not found in other programs. We provide both classroom and independent study options.
"I learned more in the first 30 minutes of your course than I ever learned from the [other] course." - Successful Cutts student
"Until this course, and I have taken the Princeton Review course, no one had ever told me how to approach the passages, and now I am doing much better." - Successful Cutts student
FACULTY and CONSULTANTS: Your classes will be taught by Jay B. Cutts. A number of multi-talented test professionals contribute to the ongoing development of our programs. Two are described below.
INSTRUCTOR: Jay B. Cutts, director of the Cutts Graduate Reviews, earned a BA with Honors in Linguistics from the University of Michigan and an MA in Special Education from the University of New Mexico, both with distinction. He has taught for over 20 years in the field of adult language, math and thinking skills. He specializes in individualized instruction and personal learning styles. Mr. Cutts teaches test prep full time and works with select students nationally and internationally.
In addition to having outstanding verbal and mathematical abilities (GRE Verbal score 96th %ile, Math score 730), Jay Cutts has developed an intimate understanding of the behind the scenes dynamics of graduate tests, which he shares freely with his students.
CONSULTANT: John F. Mares is test prep specialist who created the Mares LSAT Review, predecessor to the Cutts Graduate Reviews. He is holds an MBA and is a licensed attorney and graduate of the UNM Law School. Mr. Mares received a full tuition law school scholarship based on his exceptional LSAT scores. The LSAT contains the same type of Reading Comprehension and Logical Reasoning as the GMAT. He also received exceptional scores on the GMAT. Mr. Mares founded the Mares LSAT Review, predecessor to the Cutts Graduate Reviews, and pioneered personalized, in-depth, affordable test prep in Albuquerque.
THE COURSE: The Cutts approach targets all of the areas that can affect your score. We put you "in training" for the GMAT just as an athlete trains for a competition.
Your course includes four consecutive weeks of individual tutorial, practice assignments, lecture and live class sessions, plus an additional week of tutorial and practice tests just before your actual exam. You will learn how to adjust your patterns of sleeping, eating and thinking in order to be at your peak for the actual GMAT. Courses are offered at several times throughout the year.
Independent studies are available any time. Please call us to tailor a program to your needs.
Coursework emphasizes the Verbal Sections, Essays and Quantitative Sections of the GMAT. Your training includes vital test taking and preparation strategies. You will receive a suggested study schedule covering every day for the first month. You will practice with our packet of actual GMAT test questions, math and English refresher materials and test preparation handouts.
What You Will Learn:
* You will understand the patterns and psychology of the test and use them to your advantage.
* You will significantly improve your math and English skills, even if these areas have been difficult for you in the past.
* You will learn and practice strategies for working faster, avoiding common errors and maximizing your odds when you guess.
* You will identify your weak areas and improve them. You will identify your strengths and use them to score more points.
* You will learn and practice how to accurately analyze questions. You will learn what kinds of answers the test scorers are looking for.
* You will receive skilled help on any personal concerns you have regarding your preparation, the GMAT or graduate school applications.
The GMAT is very competitive.
Our goal is to prepare you for every aspect of it.
How Is The CUTTS Course "Personalized"?: We will respond to your personal concerns and needs. This is vital to your success and ours. Classes are small (5-10 students) and offer substantial question and answer time. Independent studies offer unlimited opportunities for personal guidance at your convenience. Most activities are "hands on" so that we can make sure you know how to apply what we have taught. We are experienced in adapting our teaching to individual learning styles, including physical and learning disabilities. We can help you find a successful approach to any aspect of preparation you may have trouble with. We encourage you to take advantage of our experience and skills. You are welcome to call us with questions 7 days a week.
How Else Is The CUTTS Course Different From Other Courses?: Jay Cutts has over 24 years full time experience coaching students worldwide on the GMAT, LSAT and GRE. Instructors in commercial programs typically teach for only one or two seasons. Please see the letter on the back of the first page of this packet. In addition, our courses are considerably more affordable.
UNLIMITED PREPARATION - Our unlimited preparation allows students to start earlier and work longer on mastering the GMAT. Many students work with us over 2 to 5 months, or more.
For further information, please feel free to call me at (505) 281-0684, 7 days a week, day or evening. Thank you again for your inquiry. I look forward to working with you.
Jay Cutts, Director
CUTTS GMAT REVIEW
What Students Say about the Cutts Graduate Reviews
"I liked the way we went into detail on the different mechanics necessary to come up with a winning score. [The instructor was] very understanding, willing to hear your questions." - GMAT student
"Overall you do instill confidence by knowing the subjects." - GMAT student
"Thank you so much for making yourself available ... . Your knowledge about the GMAT is amazing!! I learned so much in this course that is not only going to help me "ACE" the GMAT but improve my test taking skills. I would highly recommend this course to any student ... . I now feel confident to take the GMAT!" - GMAT student
"Jay works well one on one with people... He does have a genuine concern
for how we do on the test." - GMAT student
* * *
"Very helpful. I received a clear insight as to the actual test questions and how to ... improve my score." - GRE student
"I found that the skills learned ... have really implanted themselves somewhere in my brain so that I can call upon them when they are needed." - GRE student
"Well done ... I wouldn't have properly prepared otherwise ... Timing strategies ... were awesome." - GRE student
"[Mr. Cutts was] motivated and motivating. Always helpful. [His] commitment to the class deserves much more than what we paid for the course." - GRE student
"Jay knew all the subjects ... and he knew them well. He knows what it takes to get a good score." - GRE student
"Your last minute suggestions helped me considerably." - GRE student
* * *
"Until this course ( and I have taken the Princeton Review) no one had ever told me how to approach the passages, and I am doing much better." - MCAT student
"This course has helped me more in remembering, as well as motivation, just in [the first] 4 weeks, more than the [other] course did in 2 months. Thank you for the opportunity." - MCAT student
"Material was covered in depth ... Taught good methods for taking [Verbal Reasoning and the Writing Sample]. [The instructors were] outgoing and friendly, knowledgeable, flexible to differing needs ... helpful ... and interested in students' input." - MCAT student
"[The science instructors] knew all subject material ... Timing strategy and essay format were very helpful." - MCAT student
Please call us for prices
Read the questions and answers below. Then please give me a quick call. It's the best way for me to make personal recommendations for you.
HOW DOES THE CUTTS GMAT REVIEW WORK?
We work with you personally through a combination of lecture materials that you can review on your own and personal tutoring and coaching. You are welcome to call me for help outside of class as much as you need. Many students talk with me once or twice a week with quick questions, for suggestions on practicing or to go into strategies in depth.
You work with us for as many months as you need, until you have a score that you are happy with.
HOW IS THIS DIFFERENT FROM OTHER PREP PROGRAMS?
I am one of the few, and perhaps the only, full time, highly experienced (since 1990) test prep specialists available nationally for you to work with directly. Many students come to me after taking a course with a large mass prep company. Once they've worked with me, they report that for the first time they are able to understand what the test is really looking for. The strategies I teach go to the heart of the test - exactly why the right answer is right and exactly why the wrong answers are wrong.
As a linguist and educator, I specialize in helping with individual learning styles, including test anxiety, learning disabilities, poor standardized test taking and special timing strategies for the computer exam.
A prep class is only as effective as its instructor. Instructors for commercial programs have usually done extremely well on the test. Most are bright and often good in the classroom. However, the average instructor has probably taught the test only 3 or 4 times and may have only 5 or 10 hours of experience in working individually with students. Very few instructors have taught more than 8 or 10 times or have more than 30 or 40 hours individual tutoring experience.
Having done well on the test does not in itself qualify a person to teach. I personally got a near perfect score the first time I took the test but it has taken 16 years of teaching and research for me to thoroughly understand the hidden patterns of the exam, not to mention how to tailor special strategies to the needs of each individual.
I estimate that I have worked with over 1200 students and have 3000 hours of working one on one with a wide variety of students.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN ABOUT SPECIFIC PREP COURSES?
Some companies emphasize taking lots of practice tests, basic math review and learning some general hints about the GMAT through their lecture. The quality of the lecture depends on the experience of the instructor, but very few commercial instructors have more than a season or two of very part time experience. The main complaint that I hear from students who took a large commercial course is that when they asked the instructor to explain why one answer was right and the other wrong, the instructor was not able to do it.
Commercial course teachers are typically not available outside of class for extra help. Even if you can get one to work with you, it is the same person who couldn't answer your questions in class.
The GMAT is based on hidden agendas and thousands of patterns for confusing you. But there is always a reason exactly why one answer is right and the other one wrong. It can take many years of experience for an instructor to learn these patterns well and teach them to you. Most commercial instructors don't get anywhere near this kind of experience.
With the math questions in particular, it is not enough just to review basic math. Most students report that even after they have reviewed the basic math facts, they still miss many of the math problems. The reason for this is that the problems are very complex and confusing. They simply push you beyond your ability to organize complicated math information.
So if learning the math doesn't help you, what does? There are many new strategies that you can learn for organizing complex math information. These strategies are simple, intuitive, easy to understand and easy to use. They are strategies that are not typically taught in a math class. The best strategies are so easy to understand that they are really foolproof.
I've developed and refined hundreds of these strategies for my students over the years. An instructor from a commercial program will most likely have little or no experience with these. They will simply teach you the standard math, which will not be good enough.
Even my most math phobic students have remarked on how well they can understand the math with these simpler stategies. Even math phobic people are often able to solve the most difficult problems, though it may take them a bit longer.
PERSONAL ATTENTION: Personal help is important in a review program in many ways but many commercial programs do not offer this, other than through buying a very expensive additional package. You may need help with your study plan. You may need someone to interpret your diagnostic test scores. You may need help reviewing your timing and testing strategies. Without personal help, most students cannot get their money's worth out of a program.
ADVANCED STRATEGIES: Usually large commercial prep programs do not offer these. Their curriculum covers general strategies such as those covered in commercial books and then it stops there. The instructors typically don't have the experience or time to help with timing strategy, testing strategies, problem solving strategies, the hidden patterns of the test, strategies for organizing the Reading Comp passages, tools for working two close answers against each other to find the correct one, special organizing tools for complex math or insights into how to write an impressive essay.
FLEXIBLE PREP PROGRAMS: Commercial programs usually offer one set program. Under certain circumstances you can take their program again without paying. However, you simply get a repeat of your first course. You cannot get a program tailored to your particular needs or a program that let's you prepare over 6 to 10 months.
GETTING INTO MBA SCHOOL: Typically commercial programs do not offer any help on areas such as the Personal Statement and Letters of Rec.
COST: The large prep company programs are typically the most expensive prep options.
HOW DOES THE CUTTS GMAT REVIEW HANDLE THESE AREAS?
The Cutts GMAT Review emphasizes learning exactly why each correct answer is correct and why each wrong answer is wrong. For the math we emphasize unique organizing strategies for solving complex math problems. These strategies are simple and intuitive, and yet powerful and foolproof. This teaching is based on my over 16 years of experience with the test and goes into far more depth than a relatively inexperienced instructor, such as you would have in a large commercial program like Princeton, would be able to go. You learn to practice on actual GMAT questions, analyzing the patterns of the question and sharpening your strategies.
PERSONAL ATTENTION: Our program is founded on personal attention. You have unlimited access to me outside of class. We're available and experienced in helping with anything that can affect your chances of getting accepted to med school.
ADVANCED STRATEGIES: This is our forte. There are thousands of patterns in the GMAT which can throw you off, cause you to pick a wrong answer. I work with you closely to help you discover these patterns and learn strategies to get to the right answer. I help you refine the strategies so that you can use them flawlessly. I work with your particular learning style and create special strategies that work best for you. There are unique strategies for organizing the complex information in the Reading Comp passages. In the Critical Reasoning, there is something they are looking for that they don't tell you about. We teach you what that is and how to work two possible answers off each other to find the fatal flaw that must exist in one answer. One of the most critical parts of the test is learning how to use your time as effectively as possible. Your score on the computer adaptive test is based not on the number you get right but on the difficulty of the questions. Timing is very tricky and it has taken me many years of working closely with students to really perfect my instruction on timing. Instructors with only a few seasons part time experience do not yet have an understanding of the issues behind timing strategy or of the various processing styles that students may have.
FLEXIBLE PROGRAMS: We encourage students to work with us for 6 to 10 months. Your course fee allows you to work with us as long as you need to. Since the classes are customized and you have lots of individual time with the instructor, you get exposed to more instruction the longer you work with us.
GETTING INTO MBA SCHOOL: I have over 24 years experience helping students with Personal Statements, Letters of Recommendation, advanced strategies for getting accepted, as well as career decision issues. Much of this info is available to you free of charge and I do work with my students in more depth when needed.
COST: The full, unlimited Cutts program costs nearly half of the basic program of the large commercial companies. About 90% of what you pay in a Cutts program goes directly to paying for high quality instruction. not expensive overhead.
OK, BUT I HAVE FRIENDS WHO TOOK A COMMERCIAL PROGRAM AND SAID THEY LIKED IT. WHO DO I BELIEVE?
Lots of people come out of a large commercial course and get the score they needed (they may have gotten that scores without it). Lots of people feel that they got worthwhile info in a large commercial program. (Don't forget that I also hear from lots of students who did NOT get what they needed from such courses.)
The question you personally have to answer is "Where can I get the maximum amount of help and improvement?" Most likely you can't afford to do both programs nor will you have the time to do so. Compare what each program has to offer, consider the limitations on a large company, which cannot personalize its approach and which has to hire inexperienced instructors. Talk to the instructors who will actually be teaching you before you make a decision.
Going by what your friends experienced can be dangerous or tricky. Their situations may be very different from yours. They may have been able to get a good score even without the class. Even more tricky is taking a course because you have friends who will take it with you. Find the best class for yourself and then bring your friends along!
OK, I SEE THE BENEFIT OF WORKING INDIVIDUALLY WITH AN EXPERT. I STILL WANT TO COMPARE MY OPTIONS.
One option is to work with an independent instructor who got their training from one of the big companies. Any instructor hired by a big company probably got excellent scores. If they are available to work with you individually, that is a big advantage over a classroom program that offers little personal attention. However, the quality of your instruction depends on the expertise of the instructor.
From my perspective of over 24years of full time test prep help, the experience of most such instructors is very limited. While they can probably get almost any question right, they have little understanding of the underlying patterns of the test, of special strategies for organizing the overwhelming information that the test is constantly giving you, of the issues behind timing strategy and very importantly of how to work with the different learning styles that each student brings to the test. There is a big difference between 24 years of full time test prep work and a few years of casual tutoring. In comparing, talk carefully with each instructor you are considering and get an idea of how they approach the areas I mentioned.
In a large commercial program, the instructors have probably gotten near perfect scores but typically only work very part time for one or two seasons. Frequently your instructor was hired within the last few months. When you talk to these companies, ask to speak with the instructor. If they can't allow this, they either don't have an instructor yet or that person is not accessible to you outside of class. If you do talk to them, find out how many students they've worked with and how many hours of individual tutoring experience they have.
Individual tutorial is essential and critical to help you master the test. You could never learn a tennis serve or golf swing from classroom lecture alone. Most students need individual guidance to learn the most important patterns and strategies of the test.
For some reason some large commercial prep programs do not include any personal help unless you buy a very expensive tutoring package.
The main complaint I hear about instructors from the big companies is that the student has asked the instructor to explain exactly why one answer is correct and the other one wrong and the instructor can't answer. Usually they say, "Just get it down to two and guess." or "This one is just better. You just have to get the feel of it." Neither of these comments is helpful or true. In fact there is a specific reason why one is right and the other wrong and you can learn to see it. Without that, you simply can't improve. It took me years of working with students full time to develop the insights into these reasons and these are what you need to learn to get better.
The other area that is usually completely missing in the most courses is help with timing strategy. How you use your time makes a significant difference in your score. However, it is a very complex issue and inexperienced teachers will have no idea of how to approach it.
So be sure to ask an instructor how they work with timing and how they can help you figure out exactly why right answers are right and wrong ones wrong. Many former Princeton Review or other large company students have told me that without some expertise in these areas, the instructor is not really any more helpful than a book would be, other than having a place to go to do practice tests.
HOW MUCH PROGRESS WILL I MAKE IN YOUR PROGRAM?
Your progress really depends on how long you can work on the test - how many months, how many hours per week - and on how closely you work with me. It is helpful to work together frequently. If you can call me to review your situation, I can suggest a study plan for maximum improvement.
The only way to really make significant improvement is to understand the hidden patterns of the test and the strategies for working through them. It is also essential to learn how to use your time most effectively. Finally, you need to work with someone who can address your particular learning needs. Given all of these things, you can't help but make good improvement.
WHAT IF I DON'T GET THE SCORE I NEED? DOES IT MEAN I WON'T GET ACCEPTED?
My experience is that most people can get accepted if they go about it the right way.
If your GMAT score does not go as high as you would have liked despite your best efforts, there are a number of other strategies that I will work with you on, including your Personal Statement, making certain contacts and taking on certain projects. With expert guidance you should get in. If not the first time, then the second.
STILL CONFUSED ABOUT THE BEST WAY TO PREP?
Please call me. I'd like to find out more about your situation and will refer you to the option that's best for you.
If you have questions about your prep options, please call Jay Cutts at (505) 281-0684.