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GRE general


Has anyone here taken the general GRE since it's format changed? If so, I would definitely appreciate any tips for preparing. I am planning on taking the exam in Mid-August and having been looking over a review book for the last couple weeks that contains old exams and examples with explanations. Right now I'm most worried about the geometry aspect (I haven't taken geometry since early high school and apparently I didn't retain it as well as the algebra stuff) and the word association problems. I like to think that I have a large vocabulary, but this stuff is insane.

Also, how long did it take to get your official results back?

Thanks for any help you can give!

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You actually get your results back immediately because it's all taken via computer. I don't recall the geometry being all too difficult. There seemed to be more algebra, IIRC.


Also, I agree that the vocabulary is just ridiculous. If you have a good knowledge of word origins and structures, etc., you'll do as well as most people possibly could.


What school are you trying to get into? I would say for most of them references are more important as long as you don't bomb the test.

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I'm not sure which format change you were speaking of, because I know they were planning to do a complete overhaul recently, but had to push it back.


I took the GRE general exam in December, and got an 1180, which I was quite happy with but wished I had studied more for scholarship purposes. The vocabulary is definitely the hardest part. I got a 510 on the vocab, and a 670 on the quantitative. I am a good standardized test taker so I didn't study too much, kinda wish I had studied more. I thought the math was going to be much harder than it was. The problem is as you probably know, every time you get a question right, the problems get harder so it's kind of frustrating when you know you're doing good and then come up to a question where you don't have the slightest idea what to do.


The advice I would give is to use the CD as much as possible (if it came with a practice CD) or just take as many practice exams as you can. I memorized (at the time) the 50 most common words on the GRE, which should be in your book somewhere.


As dikapalooza mentioned you will get your results immediately. It will ask you whether or not you want to send your results out to schools. If you say "no" you can see the results but no matter how good you did you cannot send them out. So you better be sure you completely bombed the test before you say "no."

Also like dikapalooza said the most important things are letters of recommendation, and your letter of intent. GRE scores can definitely boost or lower your chances, but not as much as a bad letter of rec.


Good luck! I know it's a stressful time. What are you planning on going to grad school for? I'm about to start my first year going for my Au.D. (or Ph.D. depends how much time I want to spend in school) at the University of Minnesota.

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Good advice already given. I am not very good at math, and I think the math problems weren't that bad on the GRE. If you just study and work out some examples you should do alright. The vocabulary on the other hand you could probably study for months and months and still not ace it. You don't have to do extremely well on the vocabulary section to score in a very high percentile. As for the writing section, truthfully I barely tried. Most professors have told me they don't even look at it.
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Yes, I've taken it under the old format, and the new. My advice would be:


1.) Really, really pay attention to the sample essay questions provided by ETS (on the Web and via the free CD). I really worked on those pretty hard, and when I went to take the actual test, one of the "sample" questions was on there. (So it turned out to be a freebie.) Even if you don't luck out that way, you'll be better prepared.


2.) Practice doing the test on a computer. It seems like a small thing, but it's actually kind of different than filling out circles on a Scan-tron page.


Good luck! You'll probably do fine....

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