Entrance Exam

The Graduate Record Examination is a Standardized test that measures verbal, mathematical and analytical skills. It is intended to help the graduate schools (other than business schools) assess the potential of applicants for advanced study. The GRE Test is developed and administered by the US-based "Educational Testing Service" (ETS) under the direction of the Graduate Record Examination Board , a non-profit organization of graduate business schools worldwide.

GRE test is conducted in two categories - General GRE test and Subject GRE test. General GRE test is conducted all-round-the-year. Unlike other exams, you can choose your own date and time for taking the GRE Test. The test is administered in the five-days-a-week (Monday through Friday), twice-a-day. September to December is the high season for GRE Test, so in case you intend to take the test during this period, you need to register very early (say 2-3 months in advance) to get a date of your choice.

Anyone is eligible to appear in GRE General test. There are no restrictions based on age or qualifications. The test scores are valid for five years, i.e., most universities

accept scores up to five years old.

The GRE Subject test is meant to assess candidate's qualification in a specific field of study. It is required mainly for Doctoral Study in the US and is also required by some universities for Masters Level programs. GRE Subject test is a written test and not a computer test like the General GRE test. It is held thrice a year

The test is available in eight different areas:
1. Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology
2. Biology
3. Chemistry
4. Computer Science
5. Literature in English
6. Mathematics
7. Physics
8. Psychology

GRE Score

The GRE Test is only one of several parameters which the graduate schools look at to determine the selection of an applicant. A high GRE score alone does not translate into an admission offer from a great school. But the test can be looked upon as the first major hurdle to be cleared in the process of getting admission into a Graduate school of your choice.

The GRE Test is developed and administered by the US-based "Educational Testing Service" (ETS). ETS has the provision of reporting your GRE scores to a maximum of four universities of your choice, the cost of which is built into the fee you pay. You have to indicate the four universities where you wish a copy of your GRE score to be sent.

The GRE Test results comprise four different scores: a total score, and separate scores for Verbal, Quantitative, and Analytical Writing Assessment sections. The total score is reported out of 1600 and the sectional scores are out of 800. The Writing Assessment section is scored separately on 6.

The standard scores for the Verbal Section and Quantitative Sections are about 470 and 570 respectively. Scoring in Analytical Writing Assessment part is not predictable and there are no standard measures. Two readers will read each essay written by you, who will be authors or professors hired to judge your writing skills. Essays are judged for their over all impact.

In addition to these scores, the score report also contains percents (%) below. These "% below" indicate the percentage of examinees who scored below you based on the scores of the entire GRE testing population for the most recent three-year period. These percentages are important in considering how an applicant for admission to a particular management school compares with everyone in the specified period, with all other applicants to the same school, and with students already enrolled at the school.

GRE Test Pattern

GRE General test checks the fundamental skills-Reasoning and Comprehension included-and does not require any subject-specific theoretical study. The test has three distinct sections : Quantitative Section, Verbal Section and Analytical Writing Assessment Section.

Quantitative Section: This section contains 28 questions on Mathematics that are to be completed in 45 minutes. This difficulty level of questions is comparable to Class X. Major topics include Number Systems, Percentages, Fractions & Decimals, Algebra (including Quadratic Equations), Geometry (including Basic Coordinate Geometry), Ratio & Proportion, Area & Volume of 2-D and 3-D figures, and Probability.

Verbal Section: This section contains 30 questions to be attempted in 30 minutes. The verbal section requires a good vocabulary level, and basic skills of grammatically correct English coupled with reasoning and analysis. The questions consist of four types : Antonyms, Analogies, Sentence Completion, and Reading Comprehension. The four types are intermingled, with no fixed number for each type.

Analytical Writing Assessment: The writing

assessment section requires you to write two short essays. The first is the Issue task, in which you need to analyze the issue presented and explain your views on it. For the Issue task, you will be able to choose 1 of 2 essay topics selected by the computer from the pool of topics. The time allotted is 45 minutes.

The second essay is Analysis of an Argument, in which a given argument has to be critically analyzed and evaluated. The Argument task does not offer a choice of topics; the computer will present you with a single topic selected from the topic pool. The time allotted is 30 minutes.

GRE Preparation

GRE exam requires a minimum of three months of focused preparation. Practice is the key to get a good score in GRE. There are many GRE test preparation

centers where the candidate can register and take Mock GRE tests to get a feel of the exam.

A good score in GRE is not the 'only criteria' of getting admission in the graduate school. Different schools follow different formula in weighing GRE scores to admit the candidates in the schools. For example some schools give more weightage to writing skills of the candidate in specific topic in addition to good GRE score. Keeping this fact in your mind, you need to perform well in all the sections of GRE exam.

Almost all the schools give high weightage to 'Analytical writing' section of GRE exam. Hence, do not ignore the writing part of the test, though you may be good in Verbal and Quantitative Section.

Avoid guesswork in your answers. GRE-CAT is designed in such a way that a candidate cannot 'revert' or 'return back' to a question like paper-version exams. So when the candidate clicks on the 'click-box' that will be his or her final answer. So, avoiding guesswork will always put you on safer side.

Avoid wasting time on answering single question or getting stuck-up with specific question for more time. If you don't know the answer of a particular question, move on to the next question.

Plan your preparation schedule and stick to the plan without any excuses. Consistency in preparation and regular practice is the key to success. Have faith in your ability and do not loose your cool at any moment.