How to Take the GRE

If you've decided to go to grad school, you likely need to take the GRE, or Graduate Record Examinations. While this is a dreaded test for many, it doesn't have to be intimidating. Give yourself several months to study for the GRE, if possible. Make a plan for when and how to study and be sure to take advantage of free study materials. Once you are prepared for test day, just do your best. Then send your scores to the programs you are applying to, and check another item off of your grad school to-do list!


The GRE is a computer test that is about 4 hours long. It tests your writing, reading, vocabulary, and math skills.

Your 3 main to-dos:

Get familiar with the essay section, the verbal section, and the math section by checking out some official sample questions on the ETS website.


Take an official practice test.

Pick a study plan and get to work.

Practice tests are one of the most important tools to use for GRE prep, but, unfortunately, many of the practice GREs available online aren’t high quality. When you study with a low-quality GRE practice test, you can actually end up lowering your GRE skills by studying topics you don’t need to be and neglecting the actual skills you should be studying.

Practice tests are one of the most important tools to use for GRE prep, but, unfortunately, many of the practice GREs available online aren’t high quality. When you study with a low-quality GRE practice test, you can actually end up lowering your GRE skills by studying topics you don’t need to be and neglecting the actual skills you should be studying.


Fortunately, in this guide we’ve collected all the best free GRE practice tests for you to use. In addition to explaining the pros and cons of each practice test, we also explain what makes a great GRE practice test and give tips on how to use practice tests when studying for the GRE.

What does the GRE consist of? What subjects will you be tested on and what kinds of questions can you expect to see on the test? Knowing the GRE content, format, and question types is critical to doing well on the exam. Many people who don’t learn what they’ll be tested on end up studying the wrong skills and topics and, as a result, don’t get the GRE score they want.

Read this guide to learn the format of the GRE, what skills and subject areas you’ll be tested on, and every question type you’ll see on the test. We also include official sample questions so you can be as prepared as possible.


Applying to grad school means having to write a killer statement. This statement can be either a statement of purpose or a personal statement (or both, as we’ll explain later). But what exactly is the difference between these two types of essays?

In this guide to the statement of purpose vs personal statement, we take an in-depth look at the unique purposes of the grad school statement of purpose and personal statement, how the two essays are different and alike, and what you can do to ensure you produce an essay that’s guaranteed to get you into grad school.


Review the content included in the 3 sections on the ETS website:

You can also get a sense of what GRE questions are like by looking at a practice test. There is a verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and analytical writing section. Each of these sections will have a range of questions:

· The verbal reasoning section includes questions on reading comprehension, text completion (fill in 1-3 blanks with the correct word), and sentence equivalence (fill in 2 blanks with the correct words).

· The quantitative reasoning includes math questions to assess arithmetic, algebra, geometry, and data analysis skills.

· The analytical writing section includes 2 essay questions. One will ask you to analyze an issue, and one will ask you to analyze an argument.


Use flashcards and read nonfiction to prepare for the verbal reasoning section:

Buy flashcards with vocabulary words specifically for the GRE, or download a GRE flashcard app. Read articles from publications such as The New York Times and The Atlantic to get used to understanding complex texts. Word of the day provide you flashcards to memories words.


Brush up on formulas for the quantitative reasoning:

The quantitative reasoning section covers basic geometry, integer properties, exponents, and word problems. While the math itself will not be very complicated, the GRE does not provide any formulas. If you haven't taken a math class in a while, reviewing basic geometric and algebraic formulas is the best thing you can do to improve your score.

Attending graduate school entails a large commitment. This is not like a bachelor’s program where you might be looking to get a holistic degree that requires you to take a number of electives to keep you well-rounded. Grad school tends to be tightly focused on development toward a specific career path. The intensity of the classes and the academic environment speaks to this idea. Study fatigue is a real concern, and it can have a truly detrimental effect on your exam performance and resulting grade.


Math questions on the GRE are often worded in a confusing way. When you are practicing, look out for phrases like "which answer is NOT a possible solution" to get used to the way questions are written. Practice organizing essays for the analytical writing section, the analytical writing section will ask you to write an essay analyzing an idea or an argument in 30 minutes.

When you are practicing, work on coming up with thesis statements that clearly state your point of view. Then, come up with a formula you will use to organize your essay. For example, you can use 3 paragraphs to support your point. Each paragraph can have a topic sentence that states a reason that supports your argument, and then 2-3 sentences supporting that point.

If getting a high GRE Verbal score is critical for your grad school applications, then you’ll need to know how to ace those tricky Reading Comprehension questions. Improve English and Prep for GRE, IELTS, SAT and other exams. More than 1000 English words with meaning and two examples on how to use it along with phonetics. Master your vocab one word a day and mark your favorite words. Test your English by taking up free quiz in basic, medium and advance levels. And the best news is, it’s all for free.

Learn one new English word a day - Two examples on how to use that work in your conversation - Listen to audio pronunciation of the work. Learn how to speak that English word in correct way - Use it as flash cards and keep refreshing your memory - Take English language quiz when you feel you have learned enough words - Test your English knowledge using different levels of quiz test - One new word 365 days of the year - Impress everyone with your English knowledge and words usage - You can learn basic, medium or advance words, based on your requirement - Helpful for preparing for IELTS, GRE, SAT exams - Increase your vocabulary sitting at home - Best for students, home makers and working professional for whom English is not their first language


Know your weaknesses and focus on studying those. If you know that you struggle with math, make sure you devote extra time to studying for the math portion. As a rule of thumb, if certain kinds of questions are easy for you, focus on others. Focus on the most important areas for your field. If you are applying to a History PhD program, you don't need to focus too much on math. If you are going into a field with a focus on data, make sure your math scores show that you can do well.

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