How to prepare for GRE
GRE (Graduate Record Examination) is the standardized test that is universally accepted by thousands of graduate and business schools. Formulated by ETS (Educational Testing Service), GRE is a computer-adaptive test. It is split up into three sections namely verbal, quantitative and analytical writing. Verbal and quantitative sections are individually scaled from 130 to 170 and analytical writing ranges from a score of 0 – 6. The secret of cracking it lies in how smart you knock your brains within the 4 hours of test. Yes, it is longer than an old historical movie but it is certain to substantiate your academic profile. We’ll admit it – we envy the happy faces of the perfect scorers in posters. One doesn’t need to inherit the genetic lottery of super intelligence to ace it. Rather, diligent preparation and smart strategies will easily make you get through it successfully.
It’s your high school again. You need to have a strong hold on topics like algebra, geometry, applied mathematics, data interpretation and statistics. In order to strengthen your roots in basics, you need hone your intellectual ability. Remember, it’s about how quick you are able to solve the questions. You are given a time frame of 35 minutes to solve 20 questions in a section and there are a total of 2 math sections. It is advisable to allocate a minute and a half for every question since you need time to revise your answers post completion. Note that GRE is an adaptive test, and so the difficulty of the subsequent questions encounter depends upon your performance in the previous ones. You should take online practice tests in order to gauge your preparation, and practice more in sections where you’re weak. Most high scorers swear by Manhattan 5lb for representative practice questions. ETS’ official practice tests are also recommended. For theory, high scorers recommend the following publishers: Manhattan, ETS, or Princeton.
To all the classic English literature lovers – this is going to be a piece of cake for you. If you’re one among the many people who are not, it’s never too late to work up. You will come across words that you have never heard of in your lifetime. In the light of words doing the trick, make the dictionary your best friend. With an enriched vocabulary, you’re more likely to perform well in your text completion and sentence equivalence type of questions. We recommend the following resources to enhance your vocab: Memorize app, Magoosh Flashcard app.
Reading comprehension passages in this section might take you back to those days where you had to hear that story for the 100th time from your father. Try to summarize the main idea of the passage and understand what the author is trying to convey. Going through articles from Washington post, New York Times etc. will be useful as you will come in contact with the passages of similar standard and style in your GRE. High scorers again recommend the Manhattan 5lb for practice (it’s good for all sections, they say).
Analytical writing assessment
The importance of this section is not to be overshadowed by the other two sections as this plays an important role in assessing a person’s critical thinking and writing skills. Usually a score above 4 is considered good. You are required to analyze and evaluate an argument and an essay. The evaluator will grade you based on how well you construct and sustain a coherent discussion. The real challenge is that you’re given a span of 30 minutes for each part of this section where you must consider the issue, devise your response and finally compose it. Flipping through well graded responses and practicing topic pools available online will help you through this part.
No matter how top-notch your GPA is, you will not be able to snatch a good score in your GRE unless you rigorously prepare for it. Good quality study materials and practice tests are available online. Plan your schedule systematically and make sure you are familiar with all topics. Once you book your slot for the test, you will be able to download the official ETS guide and a CD containing 2 full practice tests which grade you accurately based on your performance. It is a clear indication of what you can expect during the test.
The perfect score that you’re dreaming of is just a few yards away. And remember - Practice makes perfect!
GyanDhan is an education financing marketplace with an aim to equalize and expand access to higher education.