What is the GRE?
The Graduate Record Examination is the world’s most widely administered graduate-level admissions test. It is administered by Educational Testing Service (ETS) and it is conducted in 1000 ETS authorised centres in over 160 countries. It is offered as a computer-delivered test in most centres, with some centres also using the paper-based GRE.
Who should take the GRE?
The General GRE is taken by prospective graduate and business school applicants who would like to study a Master’s, MBA, specialized Master’s in business or doctoral degree. The scores are used by the admissions officers at Graduate and Business schools as an additional measure of an applicant’s suitability to study at that institution. The logical and critical thinking skills that are tested by the GRE will be essential for an applicant’s graduate coursework and academic research. You are allowed to take GRE tests 5 times a year and you can re-take GRE test after 21 days of taking the previous test. GRE test scores are valid for 5 years.
Contents of the GRE
The 3 hour and 45 minute exam is designed to assess a candidate’s verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, analytical writing, and critical thinking skills.
The six test sections in GRE are:
1. Analytical Writing (x2)
2. Verbal Reasoning (x2)
3. Quantitative Reasoning (x2)
4. Experimental/research (computer-based test only)
Analytical writing measures a candidate’s critical thinking skills and ability to write effectively about complex topics. The duration given to this test is 1 hour which is 30 minutes per section.
Verbal reasoning measures a candidate’s ability to analyse and evaluate written material, and be able to understand and interpret information. The test is conducted for 1 hour and each section is 30 minutes to complete.
a) Text Completion: This is a fill in the blanks section. There may be one or more blanks given in a passage and you will be given three choices of answers for each blank if the passage contains three blanks and five answer choices if you have one blank in the passage. Among that you have to choose the single correct answer. There will be no credit for partially correct answer.
b) Sentence Equivalence: In a Sentence Equivalence you will be given a sentence with a blank in it. You will be given 6 answers among which you have to choose 2 answers.
There will be no credit for partial answers.
c) Reading Comprehension: In this type 3-4 passages will be given. From each passage questions will be asked following the choices of answer which may ask to choose any one answer that or choose all the correct answers that apply.
Quantitative reasoning measures a candidate’s problem solving skills using arithmetic, algebra, data analysis and geometry. In this test each section is given 35 minutes so totally 70 minutes to complete.
The experimental/research section does not count towards the candidate’s score, and involve questions from one of the above question types. Candidates are not told which section of the test is the experimental section, therefore candidates should do their best in all sections. It depends on which section you get this. It may be 30 or 35 minutes duration.
For all these sections you receive a score for all your correct answers and no scores will be given if a question is not answered or incomplete. Also you will not be penalised for a wrong answer. So it is always better to attend all questions without leaving anything blank.
Note: The Unscored and the Research Sections do not add up to the actual GRE score.
How to register for the GRE - http://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/register/computer/
For a computer based test you have to create a new ‘My GRE Account’ in order to register for exams and to view test scores. First confirm the date and venue of exams to be written and then fill in the registration form. A valid ID is required. You will also have to pay the fees online.
In TamilNadu, GRE is conducted in Chennai and Coimbatore
The fees for GRE revised General test is $205 (subject to change)
• Always have good sleep at night before the day of the exam.
• Do not cram before the exam; just practice a few problems.
• Do not forget to take a valid ID.
• You are not allowed to bring any electronic, recording, listening or photographic devices into the test centre. This includes your mobile phone. Any personal items, food, beverages and calculators are also not allowed. An on-screen calculator will be provided in the Quantitative reasoning section.
• You will be given paper for any rough working which should be returned after exam.
• There will be a 10 minute break after the third section and one minute breaks between the remaining sections. You are not allowed to leave the test centre building or the immediate area. If you need to leave your seat at any time other than the break, raise your hand. Make use of the break time to relax. Continuous working on a computer would make you tired.
• If you encounter any problem with the computer you must raise your hand and inform the examiner.
• You can only take the GRE General Test once per calendar month, and no more than 5 times within any 12-month period.
Scores and Results
The score scale for
Verbal Reasoning – 130 – 170, in 1 point increments
Quantitative Reasoning – 130 – 170, in 1 point increments
Analytical Writing – 0 – 6, in half point increment
At the end of the exam, you will be asked whether you want to see and send the scores at this time or you may choose not to see the scores and not to send. Through the ‘ScoreSelect’ option, you can decide which test scores to send to the schools.
1. On test day, you can select four schools that your scores will be sent to free of cost. If your schools are not on the list you can ask the examiner for the appropriate form to include unlisted institutions. Complete the form and return it to the examiner before leaving the hall. Your GRE scores are valid for five years.
2. After test day, you will have to pay a fee and you have 3 options: either to ‘Most Recent’ (send your score from the current test), ‘All’ (send all the scores from last five years), or ‘Any’.
What is the difference between GRE and GMAT?
The GMAT is the Graduate Management Admission Test which is used to assess a candidate’s competency is analytical, quantitative, verbal, writing and reading skills. The results are usually used by business schools for MBA admissions.
A lot of schools accept both the GRE and GMAT. You should check this in the entry criteria of each school, as their policies may vary.
In both tests, admissions officers will only consider scores that are less than five years old.
Useful Links for GRE Preparation and Sample Test
5. http://www.aldaily.com/ (To improve reading)
Which MBA programs accept GRE scores?
Business schools worldwide accept GRE scores for their MBA, specialized master's and other doctoral business programs, including many top-ranked programs.
What if I need to change the date my test?
If you have registered to take the GRE revised General Test, you must change or cancel your test registration no later than four days before your test date or your test fee will be forfeited. For example, the deadline to cancel a Saturday appointment is Tuesday. You may change your paper-delivered test registration within the same testing year (July 1–June 30).
If you reschedule your test date, you will be charged a rescheduling fee of US$50 http://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/register/change/computer. If you cancel your test within the time period indicated above, you will receive a refund equivalent to half of your original test fee.
Can I use a calculator on the test?
The computer-delivered GRE revised General Test includes an on-screen calculator for use in the Quantitative Reasoning section to reduce the emphasis on computation and to focus more attention on reasoning skills. The calculator has four functions (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division) and a square root.
For paper-delivered tests, calculators are provided at the test center for use during the test. You may not bring your own calculator.
Do I need to know the codes of the schools I’m applying to? Or will that be provided?
The test will provide the relevant codes for each school. So don’t worry, you won’t have to burden your brain with yet more information.
When will my official scores be reported after testing?
If you take the computer-delivered GRE revised General Test, your official scores will be available in your My GRE account and sent to the institutions you designated approximately 10–15 days after your test date.
If you take the paper-delivered test, your official scores will be available in your My GRE account and sent to the institutions you designated within six weeks after your test date.
How can I get an official Examinee Score Report?
If you wish to have a paper copy of your official Examinee Score Report, you may use the print functionality in your My GRE Account to print a copy of your official score report. If you would like ETS to send you a copy of your official Examinee Score Report, submit an Additional Score Report Request form (PDF) and US$27 http://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/scores/send/ fee to receive a copy