The GRE not only tests the student’s comprehension and response abilities, but also tests him/her performance against time. Following information is all about the GRE Exam and the pattern:

About the GRE

Universities across the globe have various criteria in place for judging the calibre of an applicant. They look at quantitative as well as qualitative indicators of aptitude. Many universities, especially those in the USA, consider the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores as valuable in gauging the students’ logical thinking abilities and critical reasoning skills.

Here is a quick look at the structure of the computer based GRE –

  1. The first section is the Analytical Writing Assessment [AWA] section which lasts for 60 minutes. It consists of the following two types of essay tasks and students get 30 minutes for each essay.
  • Issue Essay – This essay type verifies the student’s ability to present a well-informed and objective opinion about any given issue. Forming opinions based on facts is an important skill, especially for research based programs.
  • Argumentative Essay – This essay type requires a student to logically deconstruct an argument, while pointing out loopholes. It is an indication of a student’s ability to look beyond what is stated critically evaluate a given text, which is an important skill for any graduate program.

The remaining two sections are further divided into subsections –

  1. Verbal Reasoning section is divided into two subsections. Each subsection has 20 questions and a time limit of 30 minutes. This means students have 1.5 mins to answer every Verbal question.
  2. Quantitative Reasoning section is divided into two subsections. Each subsection has 20 questions and a time limit of 35 mins. Hence, students have 1.75 mins to answer every Quant question.

The additional unscored, experimental section can be either a Verbal/ Quantitative section.

The subsections of Verbal and Quantitative sections can appear in any random order in the test, which adds to the unpredictability factor of the test. However, proper planning and ample practice can help students overcome their fear of this format and crack this test with success.