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What is the GRE test?


What is the GRE test? The GRE (Graduate Record Examination) is a test aimed at measuring the academic ability of people who are applying to study in prestigious scientific centers around the world. In the GRE test, three skill subjects are examined: mathematical calculations, reading comprehension, and essay writing. The opinion of the difficulty level by the participants is placed in the level of difficult English language tests.

In this test, skills such as mathematics, probability, algebra, and geometry of the participants are evaluated. Of course, these topics are not among the difficult topics of mathematics, but because you have to Analyze the questions and in some cases analyze your answers in English persuasively and logically, most of the time this section is considered one of the most difficult sections of the GRE test. We will talk separately.

What is the GRE test? – types of GRE test

The GRE exam is held in two different types called GRE General and GRE Subject. These two tests differ from each other in the way they are held and the content to be measured, and now we will compare these differences.

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GRE General exam

What is the GRE General test? The GRE exam is conducted in two forms, paper-based and computer-based.
The general type of GRE paper exam consists of three parts:

* Quantitative (mathematics)
* Verbal (words)
* Analytical Writing (writing part)

The computer-based GRE test evaluates your skills in three different sections:

  • Analytical Writing Assessment:

In this section, the person participating in the test must answer 2 questions within sixty minutes (one hour). This section consists of six grades in total, which are increased or decreased by half a grade.

  • Verbal Reasoning section:

In this part of the GRE, the participants must answer 40 questions, which consist of two sets of 20, in 30 minutes. You can get between 130 and 170 marks from this section, and these marks change by one mark.

  • Quantitative Reasoning section:

In the mathematical reasoning section, which is perhaps the most specific part of the GRE exam, participants are required to answer forty questions consisting of two sets of 20 questions in a period of 70 minutes. 

The score of this section is measured exactly the same as the vocabulary knowledge section, so you can score between 130 and 170 in this section and the scores will change by one score. Keep in mind that according to the explanations provided, you have one hour to write the two parts of your writing, and you will have another hour for the forty questions from the vocabulary section.

In addition, you have to answer 40 questions in the remaining 70 minutes of your time. Be. Keep in mind that you will get a score equal to 260 to 340 for the vocabulary and math sections in total, and most of the world’s prestigious universities have set a minimum score for these two sections, which is 300 to 310.

How to distribute questions in the GER exam

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Your test will start with the Writing section . As mentioned above, after one hour, the questions of the vocabulary and math sections of the test will be distributed to the participants. But note that there is no fixed order in holding these two sections, for example, you may answer math questions in the first section and then have English vocabulary questions or vice versa. It should also be noted that in the GER exam, there are two unscored sections for the participants, which include the Unscored section and the Research section.

The Unscored section contains questions in the field of vocabulary or math that are among your questions and you will not know the location of the questions and the type of questions. The work is not suggested in any way, and the participant cannot predict that the question will be unscored due to the difficulty level of the question. The Research section is another section that does not include points and grades in this exam.

Unlike other sections without grades, this section has a specific place and is usually placed at the end of the exam for the participants, and the participants are informed that this section does not include grades. It should be noted that in each GRE exam, the participants will face only one section with no score, not both sections.

A closer look at the GRE exam sections

  • GRE Analytical Writing Section

This important part of the GER exam includes two main parts that we will discuss.

  • Issue writing

In this section, the participant has to answer a question, and thirty minutes have been allotted to answer this question. The answer to this section is typed and you have to work on your typing skills to manage your time. In terms of content, this section is very similar to the Task 2 section of the IELTS exam .

  • Argument writing

Another section that is examined in the writing section of the GER exam is the Argument section. This part of writing is completely different from TOEFL and IELTS questions in terms of content and question type , and it requires a separate practice to get the maximum score. In this section, you will be given a paragraph from an author as a question, that paragraph contains analysis and evidence for a specific topic that has led to a conclusion, and you should logically object to these arguments and evidence that the author has used. Present your opinions and arguments in the form of a text.

  • Verbal section

Another important and influential part of the international GRE exam is the English vocabulary and vocabulary section, which has undergone changes in recent years due to changes in the policies of the organizers of this test. This section, which is related to your vocabulary, until August 2011, with a noticeable focus on the range of words, forced the test participants to memorize words, synonyms and antonyms, but since that date, this test continued to work in a new policy. where comprehension and reading skills are more important. 

This test, which was initially known as the Revised GRE, was renamed to its original name after the last GRE issued in August 2016 expired. In this part, the participants must answer questions in the form of blank spaces, synonymous and opposite questions, and questions related to reading comprehension.

  • Mathematics department

The math section of the GRE exam is one of the most important and effective parts of this exam in the way of obtaining the desired score of the participants. Contrary to the imaginations of applicants for this exam, who have the mentality that this section contains high-level math questions, the questions of this section are equal to high school and pre-university questions in international schools in terms of educational level. But the point that turns this part into one of the complex parts of this test is the need for speed of action and more importantly, the ability to analyze these questions and answers. 

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In this section, participants are allowed to use calculators, but getting a score that can help you reach your goal does not only require getting the answers, and in some cases you have to provide an analytical answer to that question, and it is suggested for To reach the desired score, focus more on math and calculation skills as well as the speed of action in your response.

GRE subject

The GRE subject test is a test that measures your linguistic knowledge about academic concepts and subjects. The score of this test is from 200 to 990 and changes in 10-point intervals. One of the main differences between this exam and the IELTS General exam is the way this exam is conducted: the subject exam is held only on paper, and for this reason, this exam can only be held in some GRE test centers.

What fields are included in the GRE Subject? As mentioned earlier, this test is intended for some academic fields, which you will learn about some of these fields below.

  1. biology
  2. English literature
  3. Mathematics
  4. chemistry
  5. Psychology
  6. physics

It should be mentioned that some courses were added to this exam in 2016 and for some reasons they are not included in this exam at the moment. These fields include biochemistry, cell and molecular biology.

How to report the GRE subject test score?

One of the positive points and advantages of the GRE for the applicants of this exam is that you can participate in this exam without any restrictions and submit your score according to your desired score to get admission in international universities. It is very important for those who plan to take the GRE exam to gain admission to universities. It is very important to know that before taking the test, you will have the right to submit four scores for free, and two for each submission.

You will have a choice, which can vary between the option of sending the last grade or all grades. If you decide to send your score after participating in the test, you must pay the sending fee and enjoy three choices for each submission, which include sending the last score, sending all scores, or sending any score you want.

Payment of the GRE test and its time

Another difference between the GRE subject and the general exam is the time of these exams. The GRE general exam is held in all months of the year and you can plan to participate in this exam, but the subject test is held only in September, October and April. The cost of participating in these tests does not differ much from each other, and according to the latest reviews, the cost of the GRE test is approximately $150. 

Also, keep in mind that if you decide to change the time of the exam after registering for the exam, you will need to pay $50 to change the exam location . If you decide to cancel this exam for any reason after registration, you will only be able to get back half of the paid amount, i.e. $75, and this amount will be refunded to your ETS account.

If this registration and payment for the GRE test  was done by one of the institutes, the desired amount will be refunded to the account of this institute.

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Certificate and validity of GRE exam

ETS considers GRE scores valid for up to five years and sends them to universities upon request. Of course, in many cases, universities have different rules than ETS and may consider the degree valid for less than 5 years. A GRE score is required for admission to many US universities. Unlike most standardized tests, the value and utility of the GRE test score differs significantly among universities, majors, and even courses of study. 

For example, admission in introductory science courses is more dependent on the score of the vocabulary or verbal section, while in mathematics and science courses, more importance is given to the mathematical or quantitative section. Since the acceptable score of the GRE test varies a lot depending on the circumstances, the best way to make sure of the required score is to send an email to the person in charge of admissions in the desired course and ask him.

Does the GRE test have a negative score?

Another important difference between subject and general tests that can be mentioned is the way of calculating the negative score in these two tests. Unlike the general test, which does not include a negative mark, the subject test is evaluated and scored in such a way that for every four wrong answers, a negative mark is recorded for the participant. 

Of course, this grading process has been done until July 2017, and after that date, according to the announcement of ETS, the negative grade will be removed from the subject test and your grade will be measured only according to your correct answers.

Admission to American universities with GRE

It is very important for those applicants whose goal of obtaining GRE score is to get admission in North American universities, that the universities that recruit students based on this score usually have two options for the score. Acceptance is considered as follows:

  • Some universities consider a minimum score for student admission or refer to the GRE score and approve or reject your application based on this score.

For example, the university you are looking for may have stated in the admission requirements section that you must have scored at least 3 in the writing section, or your total score must be between 160 and 170.

In such a situation, it is suggested that you do not send your application until you have obtained the desired score, and before sending, make sure to get complete information about the admission conditions.

  • The second category is universities that do not have a minimum score for admission, and you can submit your application with any score, but surely people who have obtained a GRE with a higher score will be given priority for admission in this section .

What are GRE test resources? What books are needed to succeed in the exam?

One of the questions for applicants to participate in the GRE exam and they usually receive different options in response to this question is related to the study resources of this exam, we have tried to list the books you need to study as resources. The GRE test is mentioned.

It should be noted that this list will be updated according to the publication of new educational resources:

what is the grey test?
  • The Official Guide to the GRE Revised General Test
  • Essential Words for the GRE
  • GRE Analytical Writing: Solutions to the Real Essay Topics
  • Official GRE Quantitative Reasoning Practice Questions
  • GRE Math Prep Course
  • 5 lbs. Book of GRE Practice Problems
  • GRE Prep by Magoosh
  • Manhattan GMAT Set of 8 Strategy Guides, Fourth Edition
  • Algebra GRE Strategy Guide
  • GRE Geometry
  • 500 GRE Math Flash Cards
  • GRE Number Properties
  • Manhattan GRE Set of 8 Strategy Guides, 2nd Edition
  • GRE Quantitative Comparisons & Data Interpretation