Current Date:August 9, 2022

All you’ve ever wanted to know about the GRE!

GRE or Graduate Record Examination is a test you need to attend for admission to graduate programs abroad. 

GRE scores are accepted by thousands of masters and doctoral degrees programs worldwide. More than 1,200 business schools around the world accept the GRE, including top-ranked MBA programs and a handful of law schools in the US. 

Students who plan to appear for GRE are required to have successfully completed their undergraduate course. Candidates can register for the exam irrespective of their age and educational qualification.

Note: not all programs and universities require candidates to have a GRE score.

The exam is a computer-based test and has a user-friendly design.

GRE Structure

The examination can be broadly divided into two sections:

  • GRE General Test, and
  • GRE Subject Test.

GRE General Test

This test evaluates a candidate’s: 

  1. Analytical writing skills
  2. Quantitative ability, and
  3. Verbal reasoning skills

Candidates can appear for the general test as per their convenience as it conducted round the year. Majority of the students opt for this test as most of the universities accept this exam.

GRE Subject Test

The GRE Subject Test is not a compulsory exam. It evaluates a candidate’s knowledge in a particular subject, and is generally required for getting admission in specialized courses. These tests help make your application stand out from the rest by highlighting your knowledge in a selected subject.

The subject tests are conducted for the following topics:

  • Mathematics
  • Literature (English)
  • Physics
  • Psychology
  • Biology
  • Chemistry, and
  • Biochemistry (Cell and Molecular Biology)

Unlike the General Test, the Subject Test is conducted only thrice a year — April, September and October — and is available only in paper-delivered format.

Depending on whether you choose the paper-based or the online test, the time duration, as well as the pattern of GRE, will differ.

 No. of SectionsDuration (minutes)No. of SectionsDuration(minutes)
Analytical Writing2 sections- 2 tasks601 section- two tasks60
Verbal Reasoning2 sections- 50 questions702 section- 40 questions60
Quantitative Reasoning2 sections- 50 questions802 section- 40 questions70

Registration Process

Unlike most of the other entrance exams, GRE doesn’t have specific examination dates. You can take by taking an appointment with the nearest GRE exam centre. Make sure to register as promptly as possible as the test centres fill up quickly and the appointments are based on a first-come-first-serve basis. Keep checking the website to stay updated on the same. The test schedule forms can be downloaded from the website. However, the test centres are subject to change.

When and where do people take it?

The GRE General Test is available at more than 1,000 test centers in more than 160 countries. In most regions of the world, the computer-delivered test is available on a continuous basis throughout the year. In Mainland China; Hong Kong, China; Taiwan, China; and Korea, the computer-delivered test is available up to three times per month. In areas of the world where computer-delivered testing is not available, the paper-delivered test is available up to two times a year in November and February.

GRE Scores

The official GRE score will be sent to the candidates within 10–15 days of the examination. The GRE scores remain valid for a period of 5 years.

Score break-out

SectionScore Range
Verbal Reasoning130–170
Quantitative Reasoning130–170
Analytical Writing0–6

While registering for the GRE, students can opt to send their score reports to up to four institutions or programs for free.

While there is no general cut-off score for GRE, each college and course accepting GRE scores will have their own cut-off mark listed on the official website.

The academic institutions will evaluate your GRE score in combination with indicators such as marks/grade in degree examination, distinctions and attributes like initiatives, passion, and commitment, and Letters of Recommendation.

Education pays off with higher earnings and lower unemployment rates. Whether you are considering graduate, business or law school or still deciding what to do, take the one test accepted by thousands of schools worldwide. Start with the test that lets you show schools your best!

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