How Hard Is The GRE? Factors That Make It Difficult

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“How hard is the GRE?” This question may be in your mind if you are an aspiring graduate student preparing to excel in the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). 

It is essential to understand the difficulty level of the GRE if you are planning to achieve good scores in this examination.

In this article, I am going to guide you through the intricacies of the GRE, exploring its format, content, and the skills required to conquer this standardized test. 

By the end, you will be equipped with the knowledge and strategies needed to navigate the path to achieve a good score on GRE.

Let’s quickly get into it.

What Is The GRE?

Administered by Educational Testing Service, Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is a standardized test required for graduate program admissions. 

It is mainly conducted in the United States and some other countries.

GFE is divided into three sections: verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and analytical writing. Each section is scored from 130 to 170, for a total test score range of 260 to 340.

This examination is available in two formats: the computer-based GRE general test and the paper-delivered GRE general test. 

How Hard Is The GRE?

The GRE is often considered as difficult as compared to other examinations like SAT or ACT

As it is a computer-adaptive test, the difficulty of the questions you must answer is determined by how well you performed on previous questions. 

This means that if you answer more questions properly, the questions will become more difficult.

Plus, GRE is also a timed test. This means you have a limited amount of time to answer each question. This is another reason for the difficulty of the test. This may make you feel rushed and make careless mistakes.

Though the GRE is a difficult test, passing is not impossible. With rigorous preparation, you can ace the GRE and boost your chances of admission to your desired graduate program.

Structure Of The GRE

It is essential to understand the structure of the GRE for effective preparation. Let’s explore the detailed structure of the GRE:

  • Verbal Reasoning: The verbal reasoning component assesses your ability to comprehend and evaluate textual material. You must read passages and respond to questions on the main idea, supporting evidence, and the author’s goal.
  • Quantitative Reasoning: This part puts your maths skills to the test. You will be required to use numbers, equations, and graphs.
  • Analytical Writing: This section assesses your ability to produce essays that are concise, easy to understand, and well-organized. You will be required to write an issue analysis and an argument.

The GRE is scored on a scale of 260 to 340. The average GRE score is 310.

Factors That Make The GRE Hard

Various elements play a role in the GRE’s perceived difficulty. Understanding these aspects can assist test takers in better preparing for and passing the exam. 

Here are some key factors that make the GRE challenging:

1. Comprehensive Content: 

The GRE examines various academic areas, such as vocabulary, mathematics, reading comprehension, and writing skills. 

How Hard Is The GRE - Comprehensive Content

In order to effectively apply information from different disciplines, it is necessary to have a thorough comprehension of a wide range of issues.

2. Time Constraints: 

The GRE’s difficulty is heavily influenced by time. 

Test takers are allocated a certain amount of time for each segment, and answering all of the questions within that time span can be difficult. It is critical for success to manage time properly and make efficient decisions while under time constraints.

Time Constraints

3. Complex Question Structure: 

GRE questions are usually intended to be complex, necessitating critical thinking and analytical abilities. 

For example, the Verbal Reasoning part includes difficult vocabulary and sophisticated reading passages. 

Complex Question Structure

Intricate problem-solving and data interpretation problems are included in the Quantitative Reasoning portion. These complicated question patterns can be difficult to understand, especially for test takers who are unfamiliar with such forms.

4. Adaptivity: 

The GRE computer-based format has an adaptive function. When test takers properly answer questions, succeeding questions may get more difficult, and vice versa. 

This adaptability is intended to provide a more realistic assessment of a test taker’s abilities, but it can also add an additional layer of complexity and pressure.

5. Vocabulary Demands: 

The Verbal Reasoning component of the GRE focuses heavily on vocabulary. 

It necessitates knowledge of various terms, including their definitions, subtleties, and contextual usage. establishing strategies for learning and applying new terms, as well as establishing a broad vocabulary, will assist test takers in navigating the Verbal Reasoning part more efficiently.

Vocabulary Demands

Study Materials For The GRE

It’s critical to have dependable study resources if you want to do well on the GRE. 

Look for thorough exam prep books, online courses, and study aids covering all the exam parts. 

Official GRE guides produced by ETS, Manhattan Prep’s GRE series, and online platforms like Magoosh and Kaplan can help significantly. They offer a wide selection of study resources and practice questions to get a grasp of how questions will appear. 

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Conclusion: How Hard Is The GRE

To summarise, the GRE is clearly a difficult exam, but it is not impossible. 

You can overcome challenges and achieve success if you have the correct mindset, effective techniques, and careful preparation. Remember that everyone’s journey is different, and what is challenging for one person may be easier for another.

You can considerably increase your performance by knowing the test format, creating a study strategy, using credible materials, and practicing consistently.

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