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Exams Know-how

A Guide on Everything about GRE

Yocket Editorial Team

Sr no.



What is GRE?


What’s the purpose of the GRE Exam?


Are there any prerequisites for the GRE test?


What’s the cost of the GRE Exam?


What are the GRE Subject Tests?


GRE Pattern and Scoring Structure


What’s the best time to take GRE?


GRE preparation guide for Verbal, Quants, and AWA


GRE Verbal Practice


GRE Quantitative Practice


GRE AWA Practice


What are the tips for GRE preparation?


How to score high on the GRE? 


How to get GRE perfect score?


What’s Yocket GRE Prep?


GRE prep strategy for a Working Professional


Why is GRE Verbal score important?


How to improve the AWA score in GRE?


Analyzing an argument in the AWA section


Best GRE prep books


Best GRE online Resources


GRE exam day tips


Post GRE tips

We know you have burning questions with regards to GRE (Graduate Record Examination) and in this article, we have covered all the aspects of how to prepare for GRE. Right from the start of your preparation to how to send your GRE scores to the Universities. Let’s not waste much time and dive into the article. 

What is GRE?

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) revised General Test is a test that’s a requirement for most of the masters abroad and doctoral degree programs in some top universities in the US, UK, Germany, and Canada. Educational Testing Service (ETS) develops and administers the exam.

Students take the GRE from all around the world in their native country. Many Universities require GRE as a criterion of qualification. They require a GRE general test for MS or Ph.D. in the top Universities overseas. 

Currently, in this Pandemic, as many students were unable to take the test by going to the Prometric center, ETS had shifted the GRE test to online mode. The GRE online mode is similar to that of offline mode. 

Are there any prerequisites for the GRE test?

There are no official GRE requirements. ETS designs this exam for students who want to study masters abroad. The GRE test is a computer-delivered English proficiency test.

To answer your question on how many times can you take the GRE, the ETS offers it all year round, which can be taken once in 21 days with a restriction of max 5 times a year. On multiple attempts, Universities consider the best score. Once taken, the score is valid for 5 years. ETS also offers it as a paper-based test 3 times a year where the computer-based facility isn’t available. However, most of the people go for a computer-based test.

What’s the purpose of the GRE Exam?

You might wonder if the GRE exam that’s taken by students worldwide needs to have a purpose, right? According to the ETS, the GRE intends to measure the analytical, quantitative; they base the GRE questions on concepts from the basic Maths, verbal logic, vocabulary, and analytical writing skills. 

What’s the cost of the GRE Exam?

The GRE cost is 205 US Dollars (this might vary based on the country) and needs to be given while booking the seat for your exam. 

ETS also offers financial aid to students who prove economic hardship. The financial aid is a GRE fee waiver/fee reduction program wherein you will need to fill a Fee Reduction form and send a copy of your FAFSA Student Aid Report (SAR). After you fill the form, you need to courier the report with the form and the next steps would be communicated by ETS. 

What are the GRE Subject Tests?

Besides the GRE Revised General Test, ETS also offers GRE Subject Tests that test your knowledge in a particular field of study which includes Biology, Chemistry, Literature in English, Mathematics, Physics, and Psychology. We must note that the GRE Subject Tests are not a necessary requirement for admission to universities.

It just proves how skillful you are in a particular subject of your choice. Any aspirant can take the GRE Subject Test‌. However, this test varies a lot from the GRE Revised General Test. 

GRE Scoring Structure and Pattern

Every test-taker wants to know how the GRE is scored and how many marks the questions carry. Knowing the GRE pattern and the structure is important before taking any exam. 

The GRE sections are classified into 6 parameters which include a writing section (issue task and argument task), two Verbal sections, two Quants sections, an experimental section. 

The writing section always comes first, which has two questions. One of them is an Issue Task and the other one is an Argument Task. Both the Verbal Sections have 20 questions each and a time limit of 30 mins per section. The ‌questions in the Verbal section include Text Completion, Sentence Equivalence, and Reading Comprehension. Both the Quant sections have 20 questions each and a time limit of 35 mins per section.

The first Verbal and Quant section is of average level difficulty. The next section depends on how you’ve performed in the previous one. If you get more than the average amount of questions right, the next section’s difficulty would be hard but with more score weightage on each question. 

The experiment section can either be an extra Verbal section or a Quants section. The test results do not include this section and are only for research‌. The only twist here is that you wouldn’t know out of the total 5 sections of Verbal and Quants which one is it. So, remember to perform in all the sections very well!

Finally, the Verbal and Quant section would be scored from 130 to 170 each. Whereas for the Analytical Writing Section, it’s graded between 0-6 with an increment of 0.5 (i.e. 2.5, 3, 5.5, etc). The total GRE score is out of 340 and is a summation of the Quant and the Verbal Sections. 

What’s the best time to take GRE?

There are two main semesters that aspirants target, Fall and Spring. The best time to take the GRE exam for Fall and Spring is when you are confident enough to nail it. The GRE exam happens almost every weekend throughout the year. There’s no particular date or time ‌where you can score well. It’s all about when you are ready. 

Students attempt the GRE in their Final or even Pre-Final year. There are some aspirants who want to pursue their higher education as a fresher and some after gaining work experience. 

The working professionals can take the GRE exam whenever they can as there isn’t a particular timeline‌. They just have to know the timeline for Fall or Spring to know what’s the ideal time frame. 

Being ahead of the crowd always gives you an upper hand and hence applying before the priority deadline gives you a higher probability of landing an admit than after. Generally, most of the Universities’ fall application deadline is somewhere in January of the same year as Fall’s. So, the ideal time to give GRE is between August to November of the previous year. It takes 15-20 working days for the GRE score to appear on your ETS account and hence it’s better to take the GRE beforehand. 

Most of the Yocket users take the GRE in between August to October with the most no. of students in September. 

Now, it’s time to get to know more about how to prepare for the GRE test!

Preparation for Verbal, Quants, and AWA

GRE AWA, Verbal, and Quantitative preparation can take some time to sink in your habits and everyday routine.

GRE Verbal Practice

  • Verbal Section

In the Verbal Section, the key elements of scoring well in the Verbal Section are Vocabulary, being familiar with the question types, and ‌getting thorough with the Reading Comprehension. For getting a hold on Vocabulary follow the GRE reading comprehension strategies wherein, you can either prepare word lists or flashcards. When talking about the familiarity of question types and RC’s you need to practice from several materials. There are several techniques that you can follow to get your desired GRE Verbal score. But, following it and keeping a track of the words is the key to it. Hence, here we can talk about a couple of ways to improve your GRE Verbal Vocabulary! Buckle up.

  • GRE Word lists

Preparing word lists for GRE Verbal is one of the best ways to know which words you have heard about, already know, or are new to you. Preparing the GRE word list with sentences will essentially make you realize the difficulty of the word, for example, Easy words, Medium words, and New words. 

  • GRE Flashcards

GRE vocabulary flashcards are one of the best ways to learn about the words rather than just mugging it up. It has a unique capability that helps you remember more than 1000 or even 1500 words at a time! GRE flashcards would boost your Verbal skills immensely and you would understand that after a certain time. In fact, Yocket has launched an app for the GRE Verbal section which has the best GRE flashcards that might help you get started with your GRE preparation. 

Yocket’s emphasizing so much on the GRE verbal practice because it is a part of the final GRE scores percentiles and is important as well. There are some crucial reasons you might need to know about GRE Verbal scores.

GRE Quantitative Practice

  • Quants Section

There are many topics that can be covered to score fairly well in the Quants section. All you need to do is practice and time it accordingly. In the test, you don’t just have to be accurate but also fast. Abhineet Kothari is one of the yocketer who scored a perfect score in the GRE quant section. He had some strategies and resources which might help all the test-takers, eventually.

We will also recommend some resources in the coming sections of the blog, so stay tuned but till then also read his journey on “How I Scored 170 in GRE Quant

Preparing for the Quant section is fine but do you know most students neglect the Verbal section which in return makes their whole GRE score less than expected. Some most rewarding techniques to prepare for the Verbal section are word lists and Flashcards.

GRE AWA Practice

  • AWA Section

This is a section that ‌students don’t give attention to. But this section is equally crucial for many courses. To get a good AWA GRE score there are questions that are given by ETS on their official website where aspirants can practice from. 

The article would be incomplete if we don’t add some strategies, right? So let’s get into it already.

What are the preparation strategies for GRE?

Every person who takes the GRE has its own cool way to prepare for the test. But, here we will discuss the basic GRE preparation strategy to unleash your full potential for the best score. 

  1. First, you need to book a GRE date. We recommend you to book the GRE exam date 3-6 months prior to the exam date. The reason you need to do this is to set a goal and when there’s a deadline on your head, you ‌work efficiently. 
  2. After booking the GRE exam date, take your first mock test for GRE with no preparation. This will help you know the sections you are weak and strong at. 
  3. Focusing on the weak sections for the initial months of preparation is a crucial part of GRE. 
  4. You can understand the concepts and learn for up to 2-4 hours per day. But remember, consistency is the key.
  5. We’d recommend you to keep practicing both Verbal and Quants simultaneously.

This would not let your mind saturate because of studying just one thing.

  1. Know about the AWA topics on the ETS website, practice it, and give it to someone else to test it in terms of vocabulary, narrative, sentence usage, etc.

There are more dedicated Preparation Strategies for GRE, but these are some basic GRE study tips that will guide you towards your desired score. 

How to score high on the GRE? 

We had interviewed Shruti Rijhwani who had a mindblowing GRE score of 339/340 on the GRE test. She explained her schedule ‌by putting some more light on the do’s and don't of preparing for the GRE. 

Scoring high on the GRE needs a mindset and plan to tackle the problems or weak sections in GRE. There could be several reasons for you scoring less in a particular section but knowing which one is the key to it. Hence, we recommend you to take GRE practice tests regularly to understand your progress on any ‌topic which you were inconsistent in. 

Maintaining a timetable to understand the timeline and planning it efficiently can lead you to understand which section needs to be devoted more time. This will help you distribute your time in a day. 

Well, 339/340 is a good GRE score, but we also had interviewed a yocketer who scored a perfect and impeccable 340/340!

How to get a perfect GRE score?

There are many more treats coming for you, but right now we have 340/340 scorer Ashwini Nene! Getting a perfect score means that nothing is impossible in life. If you will work for it, you can easily generate the potential to get it. An inspiring story that will make you work smarter and harder to get that perfect GRE score! 

The highlight of her story was when she said, "During my Class 10 boards, a lot of us couldn't score too well in English and lost out on the total. Similarly, in Class 12, I did not score too well in the Common Entrance Test due to silly mistakes. Although I had expected to score over 335 in GRE, 340/340 seemed too good to be true, so I decided not to disclose the news with anyone until I received official confirmation on March 21”.

To help you with your GRE preparation, Yocket also came up with a helpful tool for you! Yocket GRE prep. 

What’s Yocket GRE Prep?

Yocket GRE prep is a free to use feature in our Yocket’s mobile app that might help you cross the hurdle of GRE with several resources! The Yocket GRE Prep has GRE sections of Verbal, Quants, and flashcards‌. These sections also have separate practice tests, so what are you waiting for? Sign up today and Ace the GRE with Yocket’s GRE prep.

Preparing for GRE and holding onto your job might be difficult, but not impossible! There are certain GRE strategies that we came up with to help Working Professionals score well on the GRE too.

GRE prep strategy for a Working Professional

There are many tips, and tricks Working Professionals can follow to get the desired score in GRE. Starting from picking an exam date & preparing for it to maintaining your own personalized book of math formulas & using the holidays and weekends wisely. 

Working Professionals need to balance their full-time job and preparation. These tips and tricks for Working Professionals will do wonders if followed and kept a record of. Knowing the best GRE prep strategy for Working Professional is highly recommended to go through the highlighted page to get more in-depth insights on the same.

Why is GRE Verbal score important?

Some courses that are non-STEM give more emphasis on the GRE verbal score than on the quant. This is because the curriculum revolves more around the Verbal section than the quant section. Also, some courses have a minimum GRE score for admission too. 

The importance of GRE Verbal scores is often neglected by many students assuming that it’s comparatively hard for many. But, after knowing the significance it carries with it, you need to tackle it with many different techniques as mentioned above and constant practicing!

It’s not just the Verbal section that’s neglected. In fact, the Analytical Writing section is abandoned as well. But, there are many tips to improve on the AWA section too, let’s dive right into it.

How to improve the AWA score in GRE?

To improve your AWA score in GRE requires you to have a deeper understanding of how the scoring of AWA works. Your writing is scored on clarity, a creative idea of expressing, control of language, spelling errors, sentence connections, cogent information, supporting points for the motion or against the motion, etc. 

The main advice to get a top AWA score is to read the given topic carefully. Take 5 minutes and jot down all the points that you would like to agree or disagree with the author. Also, make a note of all the possible examples, facts, or references that you would like to present within the content. Sensible segmentation into paragraphs will make the entire content less boring. Short and impactful content is always the winner.

To improve your analytical section you need GRE AWA practice and know what sort of questions might be asked to get a good hold of it. 

Analyzing an argument in the AWA section

With the GRE AWA section comes the argument task and the question of how to analyze an argument essay? There are two sections in the AWA section but the argument section is the toughest of them both which are stated by many students. 

Therefore first, we need to jot down the questions and the ways we could support our motion. This will help you work faster because you will only have 30 mins to complete the Argument section. Always remember to ask “why, when, how, what, etc” questions so that all of your bases are covered and you aren’t vulnerable to tackle anywhere. 

These small yet crucial tips would help you analyze the argument better in the GRE analytical writing section.

Best GRE prep books

The best materials for GRE books and resources really depend on person to person but here we have elated the best books that might help you in your preparation for glory. 

Some of the best GRE study books include:

  • ETS Official GRE Guide (2nd Edition)
  • Barron’s new GRE (19TH EDITION)
  • Barron’s Verbal Workbook
  • Barron’s Math Workbook
  • Kaplan GRE Premier/ New GRE: Strategies, Practice & Review

To know why these books are important and about many more books we encourage you to check out the “15 best books for GRE verbal & quants” article.

To get more information on board, we contacted many other aspirants as well who have a good GRE score in their exam and would like to spread some tips and tricks with you all to ace GRE. 

Best GRE resources online

Some famous and effective GRE resources are available online as well:

  • Magoosh GRE online Prep
  • Magoosh Vocabulary Builder app
  • GRE flashcards by Yocket
  • Manhattan Prep GRE resources

Now that we have all of that out of the way. It’s time for your GRE exam day and what needs to be done.

GRE test day tips

The day arrives when you have to take your GRE test. The moment is here, you have been preparing this for months and now is the time. There are many last-minute tips that we would recommend you,

  • Don’t carry your phone with you, as far as possible. If you must, switch it off, and don’t remove it from your bag at any point in time. 
  • Don’t go for the test on an empty stomach. Eat something even if you don’t feel like it. You will definitely need energy.
  • DON’T speak to the person sitting beside you during the exam
  • Check the expiry date of your passport again. 
  • Give your test with confidence and don’t feel bad about missing out on questions, just focus on the next phase of the test. 

Post GRE tips

Now, your test is done, you have got your score and it’s time to send GRE scores to a maximum of 4 Institutions. You can obviously skip it but we recommend you send the score because this saves you money for not sending it afterwards. 

Yocket has helped many education abroad dreams come true with the help of Yocket Premium! With a free private Magoosh account, experienced counselors with GRE tips, Universities’ shortlisting, SOP review and editing, assistance in LOR, etc. 

It’s great that you took your GRE test and sent your GRE score as well. But, how to send GRE scores to Universities when you have your official scorecard? That’s when the ETS portal comes into play again. When you want to send your GRE score to the University’s particular department, note down the Dept. Code. After entering the details, you just have to pay the amount to ETS and boom, it’s done.

To take the GRE test, the centers are spread all across the country and we have prepared a list of the centers for your reference. Go through the List of GRE centers to get a full list of the centers available near you. 

If you have any other questions about GRE that we haven’t covered, take a look at GRE FAQs: Questions About the GRE.

We hope you do well in your GRE exam and come out with flying colors. But, remember GRE is just one aspect in your application process; don't drag your morale down but instead improve on it or the other part of your profile. Yocket is always here to support you and your study abroad dream. To book a free profile consultation call, register today and book a timing as per your requirement.

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