MCAT Chaney`s Verbal Reasoning Mastery Lecture Notes #5

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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– You must work to read an MCAT passage in three
minutes and be able to:
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Retain the main idea of the passage.
Grasp the implied and non-stated conclusions.
Recall the supporting evidence.
Understand the passage’s structure and organization.
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Charles Chaney’s VR Mastery
•Curriculum for Increasing Verbal Reasoning
Scores
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– First, you must accurately label the three basic
elements of a passage.
•
The topic or subject of the passage (not the author’s
opinion).
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The topic will help you answer questions about the main idea
of the passage.
The setting of the passage.
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Describes the breadth of the topic, placing the topic in a
precise context.
Be careful to avoid wrong answer choices that belong to a
setting different from that of the passage.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– First, you must accurately label the three basic
elements of a passage.
•
The main idea of the passage.
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The thesis or central point of the passage which usually
includes the topic and the setting.
Be sure to look for the main idea of each paragraph and tie
them all together to formulate the main idea of the entire
passage.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– Reading training.
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Set aside 1-2 hours each day for reading for 6-8
months before the official test (ideally one in the
morning and one in the evening).
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Failure to engage in this reading practice will severely hamper
improving your VR score.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– The three levels of comprehension.
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The literal level.
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The lowest level of comprehension.
Reflects the ability to understand the primary, direct, surfacelevel meaning of a text.
Most people read only at this level.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– The three levels of comprehension.
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The interpretive level.
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Reflects the ability to understand the primary, direct, surfacelevel meaning of a text as well as some deeper, unstated
meanings.
Reveals some proficiency in:
» Drawing inferences.
» Making generalizations.
» Determining cause and effect.
» Figuring out what happened between events.
» Anticipating.
» Understanding implied ideas.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– The three levels of comprehension.
•
The applied level—critical reading and analysis.
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Reflects the ability to understand both the literal and
interpretive levels before using analysis, reasoning and
judgment to draw conclusions.
Reveals some proficiency in:
» Organizing information.
» Analyzing strengths and weaknesses of arguments.
» Selecting and rejecting information.
» Detecting opinions and bias.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– Building crucial reading focus.
•
It is mandatory that you develop complete and
unbroken focus for the hour you spend reading VR
passages during the test.
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Achieving this level of focus requires thorough preparation
and practice, practice, practice.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– Building crucial reading focus.
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Clutch reading exercise.
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Be meta-aware whenever you read and your mind wanders.
» Immediately stop reading when you lose focus.
» Think briefly about why and how you lost focus (only
when practicing and NOT during the test).
» Clear your mind, regain focus, and continue.
» When finished, think about what contributed to your loss
of focus and consider how you might avoid it next time
(only when practicing and NOT during the test).
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– Become a curious reader.
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Try to take interest in each passage.
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Find something fascinating or intriguing about the passage.
This will help you avoid losing focus.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– Anticipating the material.
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Strong readers think ahead of the text.
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Work to understand the direction of the material.
Work to predict what the author might say next.
Strong anticipation skills give you three advantages:
» Enables the reader to make better sense of the
information.
» Forces the reader to stay focused on the material.
» Makes the information more memorable.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– Anticipating the material.
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Allow your mind to ask silent questions about the
material.
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Key questions to consider:
» What is the author saying here?
» Is the author convincing? If not, what is missing?
» What can I learn?
» Does this example strengthen or weaken the argument?
» What do I find interesting?
» Why was this article published, or what makes it special?
» Who would read this?
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– Anticipating the questions.
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Honing the ability to predict the most likely questions
to appear on the material in the passage.
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Identify and appreciate various passage constructs:
» Thesis development.
• Main idea, direct comprehension, strengthen and
weaken questions.
» Competing theories.
• Inference, new information, direct comprehension,
strengthen and weaken, and structure and function
questions.
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Chaney’s VR Strategies
• Essentials of Reading Comprehension.
– Anticipating the questions.
•
Honing the ability to predict the most likely questions
to appear on the material in the passage.
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Identify and appreciate various passage constructs:
» A process.
• Inference, direct comprehension and new
information.
» Opinions.
• Inference, about the author and strengthen and
weaken questions.
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