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How to Prepare for GRE

16)GRE Books - urbanpro

Prepare for GRE

Verbal Reasoning:

Verbal reasoning section is comparatively simple as there are only 3 question types – text completion, critical reasoning and reading comprehension. The preparation process should be entirely focused on knowing specific strategies for cracking these questions rather than generic preparation advised.

Using flashcards to learn new words was beneficial in the earlier format of the test where antonyms and analogies were asked, and there was more value on root learning of words. But, the current format focuses more on understanding not only the literal meaning of the words but also the metaphorical use of the word based on the context. There are no questions that will ask you to identify grammar errors. Grammar is essential only for your essay writing section. Hence, it makes sense not to rely on these old methods advised by the coaching institutes but to keep focusing on the 3 question types.

  • Learning new words is an essential GRE preparation tip. As you learn new words, practice the usage of the words as well. Exercise new words and improves your vocabulary to a great extent by playing with words and their formations. You can also look out for new words on websites like OALD and Webster which is extremely helpful. Also, try playing Scrabble during the free time; it will help you in learning new words efficiently.

  • Practice reading comprehension as it forms a big part of the GRE paper. It should be managed as mathematics. Practice at least two to three reading comprehensions in a day to get decent scores in GRE test.

  • Practice grammar considerably and check the syntax. Try to learn all the rules of grammar and understand it’s primary usages. Learn tenses and also other particulars of English grammar.

1) Reading comprehension section –

a) Pay extra attention when reading the first and last paragraph of the passages. They usually have more answers and facts tucked in.
b) While reading the passages, try to take notes or jot the keywords. This makes it time-saving as you don’t have to hunt for answers repeatedly.
c) Its recommended reading the questions before going on to the passages. This will help you to find out answers easily from the passage.
d) Set a specific time to complete the reading comprehension. This habit should begin from the practice days only.
e) Note the number of answers that you have to write for each question and stick to the limit. Do not cross the threshold as it leads to loss of score.

2) Text completion section –

a) When you are doing text completion in GRE, try to visualise the image behind the sentence. This will help you to pick your answer. Then you can opt for the right form of grammar.
b) Break the long sentence and try understanding every part of it. This will enable you to get your answers faster.
c) If there is more than one blank, fill in the latter one and then fill the first blank.

3) Sentence equivalence section –

a) Mentally fill in the blanks, and use synonyms from the given options to complete the sentences.
b) Guesswork is the last option to opt for in sentence equivalence questions of GRE.
c) Sentence equivalence of GRE might have more than one right answer. Check, how many answers you have been asked for and answer accordingly.

Quantitative Reasoning

How to prepare for GRE exam 2018 - UrbanPro

The best part about GRE quantitative reasoning is the absence of the integral calculus, trigonometry and other complicated stuff which most of us hate in mathematics. GRE quantitative reasoning involves topics which you learned in junior and high school such as integer properties, word problems – the rate of work, speed, probability etc. which can be solved with basic common sense.

The interpretation of the questions makes the GRE very tricky. Once you figure out what the problem is about, the math involved is easier than what you encountered in your high school. In fact, it is more fun as you don’t need to write down each step and show how you arrived at your answer. The quantitative section tests your ability to reason with numbers.

  • Practice all kinds of questions on all topics. Don’t ignore simple algebra questions, fractions and negative values, standard deviation as there might be a trick involved. Review the answers and keep jotting down the mistakes you commit.

  • It is essential that the candidates appearing for GRE must make sure their concepts of elementary mathematics are clear. The topics involved in elementary mathematics include arithmetic, algebra, geometry and data analysis. Hence practice elementary mathematics. The candidates are required to answer questions where they need to apply the mathematical concepts, instead of direct questions relating to the topics. This means the test assesses the confidence of the candidate in the respective topics. So, make sure that the basic concepts are clear.

  • As I told you before quantitative reasoning is the trickiest sections of GRE, so it is to be prepared for the kind of expected questions. Hence solve as many sample papers as possible.

  • The only technique that can help you ace the quantitative section of GRE is by planning, preparing and practising. The more you plan and practice the problems; more concepts will be clear to you.

Maths chapters to cover for GRE quant section:

1) Arithmetic

School level maths is expected to be cracked with simple operations like addition, subtraction or following the traditional BODMAS rule. Integer related problems, decimals and fractions also form a part of arithmetic problems. Practice all the below-mentioned chapters for GRE arithmetic questions: integers, fractions, exponents and roots, decimals, real numbers, ratio and percentage.

2) Algebra

The GRE quant section carries algebra questions also. For this, students need to prepare in advance and be well versed with elementary algebraic concepts. If your wondering where to start from, learn the following chapters to boost your score in GRE quant section: operations with algebraic expressions, rules of exponents, solving linear equations, solving quadratic equations, solving linear inequalities, functions, applications, coordinate geometry and graphs of functions.

3) Geometry

When you get a diagram or image-based questions in the quant section of the GRE, it is usually Geometry. While preparing for the geometry based questions, do include both plane figures and three-dimensional shapes as listed here: lines and angles, polygons, triangles, quadrilaterals, circles and three-dimensional figures.

4) Data Analysis

The Data Analysis part of a GRE paper aims to determine the decision making power of the GRE candidates. For this, make sure you practice amply in advance and refer to previous years GRE papers for advanced preparation. The topics to cover under the data analysis section are as follows: probability, counting methods, distributions of data, random variables and probability distributions, numerical ways of describing data and graphical methods for characterising data.

GRE Books - urbanpro

Analytical Writing

In the analytical writing section, you are required to write 2 essays – one on “The Issue” and the other on “The Argument”. The major difference here is in the first essay you are asked to take a stand on a complex issue whereas in the second essay you are asked to dissect the logic behind an already taken stand or position.
How do you prepare for this? You just need to follow a simple routine and you are guaranteed to score well in this section.

Choose – Structure – Write – Compare – Improve – Choose

Step 1: Choose a topic where you already have some well-written sample essays. You can pick these up either in the official site or from the many blogs available online.
Step 2: Come up with a structure and an outline.
Step 3: Write an essay by developing the structure and the outline.
Step 4: Compare it with other essays written on the topic.
Step 5: Rewrite your essay to improve it.
Step 6: Go to Step 1.

  • A simple trick for the analytical writing of the GRE is reading and analysing. First, read the content and then analyse. Try forming well-read opinions and provide reasons for those framed opinions. And analyse from every point of view with proofs. First, know your given topic and then argue in a manner that is convincing.

  • Choose any topic and start writing.  Focus on using better vocabulary for expressing your views and arguments. Check on the current topics and brainstorm with others to get more ideas and improve your articulation. Practice citing relevant examples for your line of argument.

You can follow  the below mentioned GRE preparation tips while writing:

  1. Know the direction of the argument i.e., for or against

  2. List all the points for or against the issue.

  3. Filter the points based on reason and importance.

  4. Divide the argument into distinctive sections to clarify their stand.

More GRE Preparation Tips

GRE general test - UrbanPro
  1. Practice is a never-ending task, and there is no other alternative method or shortcut to practice. Be thorough with the GRE test pattern, rules, and format.

  2. In GRE you are allowed to mark the question for later review. In case if you have any doubts mark the question to review it later.

  3. The GRE test does not penalise you for wrong answers. Do not waste your time trying to solve answers which are difficult. Ideally, mark them for later review. Do go back and try answering the difficult questions as leaving a problem will do no good.

  4. You may write an incredible answer at leisure, but you do not have sufficient time during the exam. So, you need to tackle the time to finish the GRE on time. It is advisable to complete the test 5-10 before the scheduled time.

  5. Review your answers for mistakes. Occasional mistakes may not affect the overall score, But repeated typos along with spelling and grammatical errors may affect the scores.

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