How to prepare for GRE? 

December 10, 2022
By AdmissionSight

How to prepare for GRE?

What is the GRE?

What exactly is the GRE? We will explore all the details involved in this standardized test. The Graduate Record Examination, or GRE for short, is a standardized test that assesses the taker’s reasoning and analytical skills in reading, writing, and mathematics. So, how to prepare for GRE?

The test score on the GRE determines whether or not they are eligible for graduate school. The test is not subject-specific, nor does it require a deeper understanding of the material covered in a single college class. The test provides universities with a general indication of the degree to which a student is qualified to engage in the rigorous problem-solving and critical thinking that is necessary for graduate school.

The GRE is typically needed for entrance to graduate schools, with the exception of law school and medical school. The scores are evaluated in conjunction with the student’s college GPA, recommendations from teachers, and work history as part of the overall evaluation of the student’s application.

Asian student writing on a table.

Students can considerably improve their chances of being accepted into graduate school by performing exceptionally well on the GRE, which in turn has a long-lasting impact on the development of their professional careers.

When to take the GRE?

So, When should you take the GRE? It is recommended that you take the GRE about one year prior to the semester in which you want to begin graduate studies. This enables sufficient time to review and learn how to prepare for GRE well or to repeat the test in the event that it is essential to do so.

Your test results will remain accurate for up to five years, so try not to make too many long-term plans just now. In light of the foregoing, if you are interested in attending a graduate school that uses a rolling admissions policy, you should take the GRE as early as possible in order to improve your odds of being admitted.

What is included in the GRE?

In order for us to strategize better on how to prepare for the GRE, it is important that we know what is included in the test so that we can set good expectations. Here’s what’s included in the GRE:

Quantitative Reasoning

The GRE’s section on quantitative reasoning is an evaluation of the test taker’s fundamental mathematical abilities, their comprehension of fundamental mathematical concepts, and their capacity to apply those fundamental mathematical abilities and theoretical models to the solution of real-world problems.

Verbal Reasoning

The section on verbal reasoning evaluates your capacity to extract information from written paragraphs, comprehend verbal links between words, and recognize each component of a sentence as well as how those components interact with one another. Reading comprehension, text completion, and sentence equivalence are the three subcategories that can be used to organize the questions that appear on the verbal reasoning component of the exam.

Analytic Writing

Your capacity for critical thinking and for effectively articulating an argument will be evaluated throughout the GRE writing section titled analytical writing. You should be able to construct, explain, and appropriately support a complicated argument if you want to do well in the analytic writing component of the test.

This portion of the GRE is significant because it evaluates your capacity for independent thought, logical reasoning, and the ability to react appropriately to the analytical arguments presented by another individual. Scoring for the analytical writing tasks takes into account both the general persuasiveness of the argument as well as the level of critical thinking that went into its supporting evidence. In addition, test takers are scored according to the depth and breadth of their vocabularies, as well as the sophistication of their sentence structures, etc.

How to prepare for GRE?

The GRE is not an exam that can be crammed for. If you want to improve your score on the GRE, you will need sufficient time to practice, as the exam is primarily concerned with identifying patterns rather than testing your knowledge of specific facts. Here’s how to prepare for GRE:

Find your baseline.

The score that you obtain as your baseline is the score that you would get if you took the GRE right now. Take a full-length GRE practice test in an environment that is identical to the one in which you will be taking the actual exam before you establish a study plan. The results will show you which topic areas require the most attention, which will serve as a guide as you prepare for the exam.

Determine the GRE score that you hope to get.

It’s likely that you’ve already started compiling a list of the graduate programs that pique your interest. You should evaluate your score on the practice exam in comparison to the average GRE score of the most recent entering class for each program. You can find this information on the school website or graduate school profiles. The score that you have set as your goal is one that places you at or above the average for the colleges that are on your wishlist.

Students getting ready for a class.

Formulate a strategy for bridging the gap.

You need a sensible preparation plan that will keep you accountable and provide you with the results you require, regardless of whether you decide to take a prep course, participate in an online program, or study from a test preparation book. You just need to do some study to find an environment that suits you perfectly.

Practice for technique.

When going through drills and practice tests, put your attention on how you approach each question. If you are only concerned with the results of the test, all you will accomplish is reinforcing the method in which you are now approaching it. Your approach to solving problems and the strategies you employ are the primary factors that determine how well you perform on the GRE.

Mimic the actual conditions of the GRE.

Paper-and-pencil tests are useful for helping you practice topics and strategies for taking tests, but they do not adapt to your performance in the same way that the real GRE does. In order to better prepare you for the experience of taking an exam on a computer, you should make sure that your study program includes time for online practice.

Take a look at your results.

After completing each GRE practice test, you should always go back and evaluate your performance. Which categories of questions do you not answer correctly the majority of the time? Which types of questions do you have the most success with, and which ones tend to slow you down the most?

When you’re in a situation like this, having access to a GRE tutor might definitely offer you an advantage. Studying for an exam is not just about learning the material; you also need to work on your timing and how well you handle pressure. If you want to be absolutely ready for the GRE, you should meet with an AdmissionSight tutor to discuss how well you did on practice tests and devise a strategy for how you can achieve the score you want on the real test.

Work on expanding your vocabulary on the GRE.

The GRE Verbal sections continue to place a significant emphasis on vocabulary. Reading reputable sources like academic journals or some of the more sophisticated newspapers and magazines can help you learn a lot of the vocabulary that will be on the GRE.

Male student sitting on a table with books while smiling at the camera.

You should add new words to your list whenever you come across them while working through practice problems or practice examinations. They have been utilized in the GRE in the past, and it is highly possible that they will be utilized once more in the future.

Perform drills both with and without the use of a calculator.

If you know how to use it properly, the calculator that is supplied to you as part of the on-screen display during the GRE can be a significant help to you. However, the calculator also has the potential to become a liability. Figure out the situations in which using a calculator will help you be more accurate and the situations in which it will be more beneficial for you to master the rules of an important mathematical subject.

You will become more intelligent and adaptive if you know how to prepare for GRE effectively. The guidelines for enhancing your study habits for the GRE are time-tested and, in hindsight, very self-explanatory. You will be able to devote your complete effort to attaining optimal GRE results if you find a suitable study environment where you can concentrate without being disturbed by any outside influences.

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is the only general admissions test that is accepted internationally by thousands of graduate schools; hence, it is an important test to have on your record if you intend to apply to graduate school. It is in your best interest to approach the GRE in a positive light as an opportunity for admissions and scholarships. A high GRE score can even compensate for a low-grade point average.

You will be able to strengthen your GRE study techniques if you follow the ideas that have been outlined above. You can anticipate an increase in both your GRE scores and general thinking ability if you dedicate a suitable amount of time and effort to studying for the exam.

Nowadays, competition for admission to the best graduate schools is fierce, so applicants need to stand out from the crowd with an impressive application that tells a captivating story. The AdmissionSight program, developed over the course of more than a decade, will put you in the best possible position to get admission to the university of your choice.

Academic counseling, extracurricular activities, summer program applications, and college applications are just a few of the topics covered in the highly individualized, hands-on private consulting program. Contact us to book your initial consultation.

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