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What is the GRE test?
The abbreviation GRE stands for Graduate Record Examination, and it is a test designed to assess a student's analytical and reasoning abilities.The GRE is not a subject-specific test and, thus, measures the overall logical aptitude of a student. The GRE test is taken by students who seek admissions to graduate schools abroad. Because the GRE is an internationally recognised exam, more than five lakh students from more than 150 countries take it.
When to take the GRE test?
Well, the GRE is held several times a year, and students can select the best date for themselves. You can also retake this test, but only under one condition. The condition is that the difference between the two test dates should be at least 21 days. Now, the question that arises is about the perfect month to give the GRE test. For instance, if your graduate school starts in September, then it is suggested to take the GRE exam 1 year before, i.e., between July and September of the previous month. For this, you should begin serious GRE preparation at least in January, i.e., 6–8 months before your test.
The GRE exam's structure
The GRE exam is divided into three sections:
- Analytical Writing: To test your response to certain tasks and your English proficiency,
- Test your mathematical aptitude and elementary quantitative concepts with this test.
- Verbal Reasoning: To put your synopsis and figurative explanations to the test.
The following are some tips to help you in preparation for the GRE test:
- Don’t forget to take your baseline score.
A baseline score is a score that you will receive if you take a GRE test today. Getting a baseline score is crucial to see where you stand today and how far you are from your target score. Make sure to check your baseline score once a month.
- Attend at least 30 mock tests.
Practicing different questions for all sections is good, but if you practice without time limits, then you might face time management issues during the actual test. Therefore, it is recommended to give at least 30 mock tests against time. It will make you familiar with the test environment, and gradually, your speed of solving questions will also improve.
- Work on the areas where you score low.
Solving more than 30 mock tests will definitely make you aware of where you lack. There are three sections in the GRE test, and every section contains several types of questions. Only practicing can let you know which types of questions you are facing difficulty with.
- Always track your progress.
Blindly learning and practicing is useless if you don’t know whether you are actually progressing or not. Thus, always track your progress, and one way of doing this can be by checking your baseline score once every fortnight or once a month. This way, you will have everything in your hands.
- Memorize basic math equations.
As I mentioned earlier, one whole section of the GRE test is for quantitative reasoning. This section involves basic and elementary concepts like geometry, algebra, etc., which have fixed equations and formulas. The best way to prepare for this section is to memorize these equations.
- Save time to proofread the writing section.
Another section is for analytical writing, which is a subjective part of the test. It will lose so many points if you leave your answers jumbled with grammatical errors and wrong spelling. So, always manage your time so that you get a couple of minutes to proofread your answers and give your best.
Preparation for the GRE exam or any other exam can be stressful, but proper time management and planning can save you from all the anxiety and compliment you with a good score.