Here’s an honest review of GAT book by Dogar Brothers, also known as smart brain. Many people in Pakistan has used this book for preparing their GAT general test. This book has been in the market since the very advent of the GAT test in Pakistan. Written by Muhammad Idrees, the GAT book by dogar brothers has been a source of practicing GAT questions.
So you must be surprised that I am writing a book review for the GAT book by Muhammad Idrees only now. The truth is that I have been a little negligent in writing a book review for the GAT test as I have mostly focused on helping GAT students with actual GAT questions and solutions.
The Structure of the Book (Smart Brain)
The GAT book by Muhammad Idrees is definitely structured in a traditional fashion. Each section within the book is based on certain areas. For instance, the book starts off with some information related to GAT test, and a complete GAT diagnostic test of 100 questions that covers various topics.
Then a complete section is dedicated towards each of the Math, English and Analytical section on the actual GAT exam. Within each chapter, concepts are broken up into categories. Each chapter focuses not only on explaining the questions type but also entails shortcut techniques and strategies to solve the questions. Before moving on to a new chapter, this book provides you with a lot of practice questions where you can test your new found skills. Moreover the questions are broken down into two difficult levels; sweet candies (easy questions) and brain busters (difficult questions). This allows you to determine the level of difficulty that you are trying to solve and helps you gauge your performance.
Finally, at the end of the book you are given 1 full length GAT practice test that you can use to test the range of concepts you have learned throughout the GAT book by Muhammad Idrees.
With this book you will actually learn. Muhammad Idrees & Dogar brothers do not resort to cheesy tricks or strategies to solve questions on the GAT test. By the time you are done with this book, you will have a solid grasp of all concepts tested on the GAT exam. Because the book provides many difficult GAT questions, therefore you will not fall into a false sense of confidence thinking that you know everything on the exam.
The GAT book by Muhammad Idrees covers almost anything you will see on the test. Every “Brain Buster” and each question on the GAT sample/diagnostic paper is associated with complete and detailed explanations of solving the question. Moreover each chapter has a bunch of solved exercises that help in consolidating the concepts learned during the chapter. In an attempt to let students come up with their own solutions, this book has not provided any explanations for “Sweet Candies” – however it does provide its answers.
Reading Comprehensions: 26 (Solved Exercises) 34 (Sweet Candies) 25 (Brain Busters)
Sentence Completions: 20 (Solved Exercises) 30 (Sweet Candies) 30 (Brain Busters)
Analogies: 15 (Solved Exercises) 105 (Sweet Candies) 30 (Brain Busters)
Antonyms: 15 (Solved Exercises) 100 (Sweet Candies) 30 (Brain Busters)
Problem Solving (MCQ): 82 (Solved Exercises) 25 (Sweet Candies) 20 (Brain Busters)
Quantitative Comparison: 10 (Solved Exercises) 20 (Sweet Candies) 20 (Brain Busters)
Logical Reasoning: 20 (Solved Exercises) 20 (Sweet Candies) 20 (Brain Busters)
Analytical Reasoning: 28 (Solved Exercises) 30 (Sweet Candies) 26 (Brain Busters)
A second ago I said I liked this book because it provides many practice problems with explanations. This is not true entirely. While the book does have loads of practice questions, but it lacks having a lot of difficult questions. For instance, the Math section has only 40 difficult questions in total, whereas the analytical section only has 48 hard ones and the verbal part has around 100. I believe that in order to do well on the GAT exam one must practice a lot – especially on Math & analytical reasoning. This book lacks in that aspect.
The worst part is that the book has many typos. This book is filled with several errors, typos and incorrect answers. I found at least 1 error per chapter and sometimes more than 3 per chapter. I know that all books have some errors but this book has so many errors that it is totally unacceptable.
Personally speaking, one of the worst ways to study vocabulary is by learning and memorizing from a list of words or flash cards. But I guess that there is no other way of learning words for the GAT test if you don’t have much time on your hands.
GAT book by Dogar publishers has a high frequency word list that is essential to learn for your GAT preparation. This word list has around 250 words grouped alphabetically. Each word has a definition but it does not have a sentence or any contextual usage of the word, which is a bad thing. It becomes really difficult to just keep memorizing words without ever knowing where and how they are used. Nevertheless the high frequency word list has a lot of good words that you will definitely see on the test day.
Moreover the GAT book also has 150 words that are grouped into segments of related words. These are also some of the most commonly seen words on the GAT test. This process is great for letting similar words sink in.
Muhammad Idrees also provides the root method of learning words for the GAT exam. I am not a big fan of this way of learning words since many words don’t follow the root system, but still you can learn many valuable words from this technique.
GAT Book by Muhammad Idrees and published by Dogar Brothers is no doubt an excellent resource for studying. However it lacks in hard practice questions – one area that you will have to cover from some other source. This book teaches good strategies that will work on the test day and also helps students learn over 600 new words for the GAT exam. Complemented with some more practice questions, this book is definitely worth a read and will help you do well on the test day.