GRE (Graduate Record Examination)

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What is GRE?

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is administered by the Educational Testing Services. GRE is a standardized test that is required to be taken by students seeking admission in any of the graduate schools.

It is a test to evaluate skills of the aspirants. The GRE has been developed to evaluate the verbal, analytical and mathematical skills of the candidates.

Students seeking admission into any Masters Program in the US and many other European countries are required to take GRE. Individuals applying to graduate schools in order to pursue a Masters in Arts (MA) or Science (MS) are required to take the GRE (Graduate Record Examination).

♦ Eligibility Criteria for GRE ♦

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1) A Bachelor’s degree is the minimum requirement for seeking admission in any Masters Program in US and therefore, it is also an essential qualification for taking GRE.

2) Most US Universities have made it mandatory for a student to complete 16 years of education for admission to Science and Engineering programs.

However students holding BE, B. Tech, B. Sc (Agriculture) or B.Arch degrees, i.e. students who have spent four years for their Bachelor’s degree can directly seek admission in Science and Engineering program in any US University.

♦ Commencement of Exam ♦

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Computer-based GRE Revised General Test is given year round at computer-based test centres. Appointments are scheduled on a first come first serve basis.

 

You can take the GRE Revised General Test (Computer based test and paper based test) once in every 60 daysand not more than five times within 12 months period. If you choose to take only the paper based GRE Revised General Test, you may take it as often as it is offered.

 

♦ What’s on the Test 

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The questions on the GRE revised General Test are based on the kind of thinking you’ll do, and the skills you’ll need to succeed ,in today’s demanding graduate and business school programs.

♦ The Verbal Reasoning section 

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The Verbal Reasoning section measures your ability to understand what you’ve read and how you apply your reasoning skills , The Verbal Reasoning measure of the GRE revised General Test assesses your ability to analyze and evaluate written material and synthesize information obtained from it, analyze relationships among component parts of sentences and recognize relationships among words and concepts.

 

The Verbal Reasoning measure contains three types of questions.

  • Reading Comprehension Questions
  • Text Completion Questions
  • Sentence Equivalence Questions

Reading Comprehension Questions:

Reading Comprehension questions are designed to test a wide range of abilities that are required in order to read and understand the kinds of prose commonly encountered in graduate school. Those abilities include:

  • Understanding the meaning of individual words and sentences
  • Understanding the meaning of paragraphs and larger bodies of text
  • Distinguishing between minor and major points
  • Summarizing a passage
  • Drawing conclusions from the information provided
  • Reasoning from incomplete data to infer missing information
  • Understanding the structure of a text in terms of how the parts relate to one another
  • Identifying the author’s assumptions and perspective
  • Analyzing a text and reaching conclusions about it
  • Identifying strengths and weaknesses of a position
  • Developing and considering alternative explanations

As this list implies, reading and understanding a piece of text requires far more than a passive understanding of the words and sentences it contains; it requires active engagement with the text, asking questions, formulating and evaluating hypotheses and reflecting on the relationship of the particular text to other texts and information.

Each Reading Comprehension question is based on a passage that may range in length from one paragraph to several paragraphs. The test contains approximately 10 passages, the majority of which are one paragraph in length and only one or two of which are several paragraphs long. Passages are drawn from the physical sciences, biological sciences, social sciences, business, arts and humanities and everyday topics and are based on material found in books and periodicals, both academic and nonacademic.

Typically, about half of the questions on the test will be based on passages, and the number of questions based on a given passage can range from one to six. Questions can cover any of the topics listed above, from the meaning of a particular word to assessing evidence that might support or weaken points made in the passage. Many, but not all, of the questions are standard multiple-choice questions, in which you are required to select a single correct answer; others ask you to select multiple correct answers; and still others ask you to select a sentence from the passage.

Text Completion Questions:

Skilled readers do not simply absorb the information presented on the page; instead, they maintain a constant attitude of interpretation and evaluation, reasoning from what they have read so far to create a picture of the whole and revising that picture as they go. Text Completion questions test this ability by omitting crucial words from short passages and asking the test taker to use the remaining information in the passage as a basis for selecting words or short phrases to fill the blanks and create a coherent, meaningful whole.

Question Structure:

These questions include a passage composed of one to five sentences with one to three blanks. There are three answer choices per blank, or five answer choices if there is a single blank.

Sentence Equivalence Questions:

Like Text Completion questions, Sentence Equivalence questions test the ability to reach a conclusion about how a passage should be completed on the basis of partial information, but to a greater extent they focus on the meaning of the completed whole. Sentence Equivalence questions consist of a single sentence with just one blank, and they ask you to find two choices that lead to a complete, coherent sentence while producing sentences that mean the same thing.

Question Structure:

These questions consist of a single sentence, one blank, and six answer choices. These questions require you to select two of the answer choices. You receive no credit for partially correct answers.

 ♦The Quantitative Reasoning section 

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The Quantitative Reasoning section measures how well you interpret and analyze quantitative information. You’ll need to have an understanding of basic math concepts (arithmetic, algebra, geometry and data analysis). And there’s an increased emphasis on data interpretation and real-life scenarios. In this section, you may use the on-screen calculator.

The skills, concepts and abilities are tested in the four content areas below:

Arithmetic topics : Include properties and types of integers, such as divisibility, factorization, prime numbers, remainders and odd and even integers; arithmetic operations, exponents and roots; and concepts such as estimation, percent, ratio, rate, absolute value, the number line, decimal representation and sequences of numbers.

Algebra topics: Include operations with exponents; factoring and simplifying algebraic expressions; relations, functions, equations and inequalities; solving linear and quadratic equations and inequalities; solving simultaneous equations and inequalities; setting up equations to solve word problems; and coordinate geometry, including graphs of functions, equations and inequalities, intercepts and slopes of lines.

Geometry topics: Include parallel and perpendicular lines, circles, triangles — including isosceles, equilateral and 30°-60°-90° triangles — quadrilaterals, other polygons, congruent and similar figures, three-dimensional figures, area, perimeter, volume, the Pythagorean theorem and angle measurement in degrees. The ability to construct proofs is not tested.

Data analysis topics: Include basic descriptive statistics, such as mean, median, mode, range, standard deviation, interquartile range, quartiles and percentiles; interpretation of data in tables and graphs, such as line graphs, bar graphs, circle graphs, boxplots, scatterplots and frequency distributions; elementary probability, such as probabilities of compound events and independent events; random variables and probability distributions, including normal distributions; and counting methods, such as combinations, permutations and Venn diagrams. These topics are typically taught in high school algebra courses or introductory statistics courses. Inferential statistics is not tested.

Question Structure 

  • Multiple-choice Questions — Select One Answer
  • These questions are multiple-choice questions that ask you to select only one answer choice from a list of five choices.
  • Multiple-choice Questions — Select One or More Answer Choices
  • These questions are multiple-choice questions that ask you to select one or more answer choices from a list of choices. A question may or may not specify the number of choices to select.
  • Numeric Entry questions require you to enter your answer in a box instead of selecting an answer from a list.
  • Quantitative Comparison questions ask you to compare two quantities and then choose the statement from a list that most accurately describes the comparison.

 ♦ Analytical Writing section ♦

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The Analytical Writing measure tests your critical thinking and analytical writing skills. It assesses your ability to articulate and support complex ideas, construct and evaluate arguments, and sustain a focused and coherent discussion. It does not assess specific content knowledge.

The Analytical Writing measure consists of two separately timed analytical writing tasks:

  • A 30-minute “Analyze an Issue” task
  • A 30-minute “Analyze an Argument” task

The Issue task presents an opinion on an issue of general interest followed by specific instructions on how to respond to that issue. You are required to evaluate the issue, consider its complexities and develop an argument with reasons and examples to support your views.

The Argument task requires you to evaluate a given argument according to specific instructions. You will need to consider the logical soundness of the argument rather than agree or disagree with the position it presents.

Your responses will be evaluated on whether you can integrate critical thinking and analytical writing by fully addressing the tasks you’re presented.

♦  UnScored sections ♦

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An unidentified, unscored Verbal Reasoning or Quantitative Reasoning section may be included on the computer-delivered test. This section may appear in any order after the Analytical Writing section and doesn’t count as part of your score.

Questions in the unscored section are being tried out either for possible use in future tests or to ensure that scores on new editions of the test are comparable to scores on earlier editions. The Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning and unidentified/unscored sections may appear in any order; therefore, you should treat each section as if it counts toward your score.

An identified research section may be included in place of the unscored section. The questions for the research section are for ETS research purposes and don’t count as part of your score. This section will always appear at the end of the test.

Register for the Computer-delivered GRE revised General Test:

The GRE revised General Test is offered year-round as a computer-delivered test in most locations around the world. Appointments are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. Register early to get your preferred test date and test location.

Here is the link where you can go ahead with the registration process:

https://mygre.ets.org/greweb/login/login.jsp

♦ Important FAQ’s about GRE ♦

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1) What is the price of the test?

GRE revised General Test — worldwide : $195
Rescheduling fee : $50
Changing your test center : $50

2) Will I see my scores at the test center when I take the computer-delivered test?

After completing the computer-delivered GRE revised General Test, you will be given the opportunity to Report or Cancel your scores. If you choose Report Scores, you will see your unofficial scores for the Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning measures at the test center. Because of the Analytical Writing essay scoring process, you will not be able to view your Analytical Writing score at the testing center.

Although you have the option to cancel your scores, consider very carefully before doing so because the score reporting choices available with the ScoreSelect® option allow you to report only the scores you feel reflect your personal best. If you cancel your scores, neither you nor any schools will ever see them and they will not be part of your reportable history. If you select to report your scores, you will view your unofficial scores on the screen and the score will become a part of your reportable history.

Your official scores will be available in your My GRE Account and sent to your score recipients approximately 10–15 days after your test date.

3) What scores are reported?

Three scores are reported on the GRE revised General Test:

  • A Verbal Reasoning score is reported on a 130–170 score scale, in 1-point increments.
  • A Quantitative Reasoning score is reported on a 130–170 score scale, in 1-point increments.
  • An Analytical Writing score is reported on a 0–6 score level, in half-point increments.

4) How do I send my scores to an institution?

Your test fee entitles you to request that scores be sent to as many as four graduate institutions or fellowship sponsors at no additional cost.

For the computer-delivered GRE revised General Test, you will be asked to designate your score recipients at the test center or you can choose not to report your scores at that time.

5) When will my official scores be reported after testing?

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.

6) Can I view my scores online?

Yes. Once your official scores are reported, you will receive an email from ETS indicating you can view your scores online free of charge through your My GRE Account.

7) How long are GRE scores valid?

GRE scores are valid for five years after the testing year in which you tested

8) How often can I take the computer-based General Test?

ou may take the CBT once per calendar month. This is true even if you canceled your scores on a previous CBT taken within the same month.

9) How important are my GRE scores?

Schools vary tremendously in the weights they place on the different factors in the admissions process, so be sure to contact the specific schools to which you are applying in order to determine their unique requirements. Some programs weight GRE scores very heavily, and/or have a minimum score for applicants, while other programs consider GRE scores more of a formality. It is important to note that your GRE score is a major factor in determining your eligibility for financial aid.

10) Can I cancel my scores?

Yes. You can cancel your scores immediately after you take the GRE test. This is the only time you can cancel your scores. Unfortunately, you must make the decision to cancel at the testing center before you see your scores. In addition, the fact that you cancelled your scores will be noted on your official GRE score report.

11) How do I order additional score reports?

There are three easy ways to order ASRs: online, by mail or by fax.For more information on fees and options check with https://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/scores/send/asr

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