How to Prepare for GRE
The GRE is a crucial factor in deciding the fate of your admission to the graduate school in the US. Unlike competitive exams in India, the GRE does not require you to slog for hours but rather plan smartly and follow a continuous study schedule. Now that you’ve taken the first step to make your American Dream true, here’s a quick guide on how to start preparing for GRE:
(Also Read : 5 Quick Tips for GRE Preparation )
1. Take a diagnostic test
A diagnostic test provides insights to many things. It helps you know where you stand, what your weaknesses are and what sections you need to focus more on. Additionally, it also helps one to get familiar with the exam pattern and questions. Thus, taking a diagnostic step is very important before you actually start preparing for the exam. There are several free websites on the Internet as well as several books which provide a free diagnostic test. Start now and go find one quickly!
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2. Gather the right study material
Getting the right study material and resources is a very pivotal factor in preparing for GRE. There are several books available in the market, but you need to filter out those with bad practice content and use only the best sources. A few highly recommended resources for GRE are The ETS Official Guide to GRE, Manhattan Prep, Barron’s GRE, Princeton Review, Kaplan GRE and Magoosh.com.
3. Prepare your own schedule
Once you know which part you need to focus more on, prepare a realistic schedule accordingly. The ideal time to prepare for GRE is 2-3 months but this largely varies from person to person, some might require 4 months while some might do it in a week! Start with studying only for a few hours a day and then proceed gradually with putting in more time once you’re closer to the exam. Break down your schedule in such a way that you give ample time to all three sections and don’t get carried away only towards your weaknesses. You can refer to a few study plans online and make your own accordingly. It is important you follow your schedule consistently and rigorously to score well in the GRE.
Don't forget to carry these things to your GRE test.
4. Practice regularly and Revise
As said earlier, preparing for the GRE does not require you to slog hard for hours but rather practice daily for just a few. A key tip to score well in GRE is to learn the strategies effectively and then practice accordingly. Additionally, it is important that you revise the important concepts frequently to keep a track on them. This is very important in learning vocabulary for the verbal section since it is impossible to remember the words in just one visit and you need to frequently redo them.
5. Take mock tests
There’s no better preparation for GRE than taking practice tests. They help you identify your strengths and weaknesses thoroughly and also get you accustomed to the actual exam experience. Start your mock tests one month before your actual exam and analyze the topics or sections you still need to improve upon. The difference between your actual GRE score and mock GRE score is usually +/- 4; hence you must take as many practice tests as possible to be closer to the reality.
Prepare for your GMAT test by referring to these GRE samples test.
6. Keep Calm and be Confident!
You need to adapt these 2Cs (Calmness and Confidence) in order to succeed in the GRE. The 3 hrs 45 min long exam can be an exhaustive experience; you must build endurance and maintain exposure. If you have prepared thoroughly and regularly for the exam, you’re bound to get a great score!
To conclude - prep it up, be committed to that plan and you’ll get your dream university for sure!