When you come across the acronym ‘GRE’, what flashes through your mind??
Oh, you just said it is challenging, difficult, etc.
Well, when you are done reading each part of this article, I’d love to know your thoughts again.
Key points you need to understand before you start practising quant/verbal questions or writing essays.
- Research and understand what the examination is all about.
How many sections? What is the duration? How many questions per section? Is it section-adaptive? Etc. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) consists of six sections: Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA- One Issue Essay and One Argument Essay)), Quantitative Reasoning (Two Sections), Verbal Reasoning (Two Sections), Unidentified/Unscored Section, which could be Quantitative or Verbal Reasoning.
Now you have an overview of what the examination entails, you need to create a viable GRE STUDY PLAN (also state your preparation period; 2, 3, or 6 months). This is very important as it helps you have good learning and practice structure. Yes, there are many study plans online but be sure to tailor and make it your study plan. For example, the online study plan says study for 5 hours per day, but you are quite busy and decide to rush up all the week’s learning during the weekend. This won’t work! To ace the GRE, you need CONSISTENT practice. You have to study every day, so you need to make the study plan your own. If you can only learn for 3 hours per day, this is more fruitful than 10 hours by the weekend. With a viable study plan, you are on track to obtain your desired score.
- Gather the right resources/study materials.
You should not use a material written/published in 2005 to prepare for the GRE in 2020. Every material usually has a revised/new edition. With the right and updated materials, you are on the right path to obtain your preferred score.
- Prepare your mind to take GRE practice tests weekly or bi-weekly.
You should keep a track record of your scores in a spreadsheet or note. Analyze your scores by going through each practice test when you complete them, helps you identify where you are lagging (maybe you’re not good with Reading Comprehension in Verbal or Percentages and Ratio in Quant, etc.). Taking practice tests also helps you get used to the exam’s duration so that your efficiency bar is always full, and you do not get exhausted very quickly.
How to get a top GRE score (Image credit: The Princeton Review)
- Looking at your score spreadsheet after your second or third practice test, you can decide on your examination date. It is great to register for your examination as it keeps you on track with your study plan asides helping you secure a seat on your preferred date. You can register weeks before the date; you do not have to wait till 1 or 2weeks before the end of your preparation.
- Get a study partner or group.
You need to go on this journey with someone or a group. This will help you a lot, especially when a topic seems complicated. Your study partner or group could let you in on a material that simplifies everything. Asides this, your study partner or group could help with many doses of motivation and resilience.
If you can implement all the points mentioned above, then you’re off to a great start to your desired GRE score. We can now crack each section of the GRE; join me in the next part of this article.
Written by: Fahidat Gbademosi