The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is an exam that is produced and administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). This is an exam that is used by applicants to graduate school, and it serves as a common measure for the applicants. There are two types of Graduate Record Examinations, the general exam and the subject tests. The general GRE test is often required for admission to graduate school, and the subject tests, which are only given in a few select subjects, can be either optional or required depending on the graduate program.

The test measures verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking and analytical writing skills that are not related to any specific field of study.

Verbal Reasoning:

* analyze and evaluate written material and synthesize information obtained from it
* analyze relationships among component parts of sentences
* recognize relationships between words and concepts

Quantitative Reasoning:

* understand basic concepts of arithmetic, algebra, geometry and data analysis
* reason quantitatively
* solve problems in a quantitative setting

Analytical Writing:

* articulate complex ideas clearly and effectively
* examine claims and accompanying evidence
* support ideas with relevant reasons and examples
* sustain a well-focused, coherent discussion
* control the elements of standard written English

Time Table for the GRE:

Sample Questions
> Verbal Reasoning
Analogy tests your ability to recognize the relationship between the words in a word pair and to recognize when two word pairs display parallel relationships. To answer an analogy question, you must formulate the relationship between the words in the given word pair and then select the answer containing words related to one another in most nearly the same way. Some examples are relationships of kind, size, spatial contiguity, or degree.

Antonym tests knowledge of vocabulary more directly than do any of the other verbal question types, measuring the strength of your vocabulary and your ability to reason from a given concept to its opposite. Antonyms may require only general knowledge of a word, or they may require that you make fine distinctions among answer choices. Antonyms are generally confined to nouns, verbs, and adjectives; answer choices may be single words or phrases.

Sentence completion measures your ability to use a variety of cues provided by syntax and grammar to recognize the overall meaning of a sentence. In deciding which of five words or sets of words can best be substituted for blank spaces in an incomplete sentence, you must analyze the relationships among the component parts of the sentence. Consider each answer choice carefully and decide which completes the sentence in a way that gives the sentence a logically satisfying meaning and allows it to be read as a stylistically integrated whole. Sentence completion questions provide a context within which to analyze how words relate to and combine with one another to form a meaningful unit of discourse.

Reading comprehension measures your ability to read with understanding, insight and discrimination. This type of question explores your ability to analyze a written passage from several perspectives. These include your ability to recognize both explicitly stated elements in the passage and assumptions underlying statements or arguments in the passage as well as the implications of those statements or arguments.

Because the written passage upon which the questions are based presents a sustained discussion of a particular topic, there is ample context for analyzing a variety of relationships.

Useful links:

Test centers and accepting institutions (PDF)
Study Help - List of sufixes and prefixes
Study Help - Vocabulary used (most commom words)
GRE Practice General Test — Contains one full-length paper-based GRE General Test, test-taking strategies, sample Verbal and Quantitative questions with explanations, sample Analytical Writing topics, and scored sample essays and reader commentary.
An Introduction to the Analytical Writing Section of the GRE General Test — Contains a description of the Analytical Writing section, strategies for each task, directions, scoring information, scoring guides, score level descriptions, a sample test, and scored essay responses with reader commentary.
Sample Current and Reformatted Reading Passages (PDF)


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