23 Jun, 2021 02:21 PM

How difficult is the GRE exam?

I'm getting ready to take the GRE this next spring, but I am worried about it. I really don't take tests well and it is all that is standing between me and graduate school. Someone please be honest, how hard is it? I am focusing on Psychology, what are the areas that I need to score high in? Talking to school admissions people is like talking to a brick wall, maybe ya'll know more then they do :)

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23 Jun, 2021 02:21 PM

It's similar to the SAT but more difficult, since you're expected to have a full college education. But the subject areas are similar: math, verbal, analytical. You can do brush-up on these things by getting one of those "study for the GRE" books or something. There is a link below that points you to the GRE's "official" test prep book.

The subject test--if you are taking it--shouldn't be a problem if you have paid attention and absorbed what you need to know in your subject of interest (psychology).

23 Jun, 2021 02:22 PM

GREs and similar exams are pretty hard, particularly if you haven't practised. Make sure you buy the study guides and use them, and try and take a course, if you can afford it. The more familiar you are with the format, and the more practice you have, the better you are likely to do.

Good luck


husband is a teacher.

23 Jun, 2021 02:23 PM

I know how you feel. I went into the GRE with a dislike for standardized tests and serious test anxiety, particularly about the quantitative part of the exam. I did get the books and CDs and studied, but not as much as I could have. I would recommend taking a course, if you can afford it. But if you can't, get all the books and CDs from the library and set time aside to study each day, take the practice tests, etc. I thought it was rather difficult, half of which was the stress induced by the scary atmosphere of those computer testing sites. Cameras are on you the whole time, you have to check in and out at designated times and show ID to get back in, etc.

I refused to take it a 2nd time, as I'd already spent so much time and money on the first time around. And given my anti-standardized test stance, I decided that any school that turned me down because of one section of that stupid test wasn't the kind of school I wanted to attend anyway. I ended up doing well on the verbal and writing (above 80th percentile) and not so well on the quantitative section. I explained the latter in my personal statements by addressing other work that showed that my quant skills were up to par for a social science PhD program. I was admitted to all 3 programs I applied to, so I guess it worked!

Good luck!

23 Jun, 2021 02:23 PM

Are you taking both the General and the Psychology one? I took the psych one and did well, if you know it then you know it and if you don't know it just skip the question because you lose less points bu not answering then by answering wrong. But the general one I took a kaplan review and will be taking it this summer.

With the general one you could do okay if you study damn hard and memorize the math equations you learned way back when (like geometry) and study lots of vocab. I would not suggest taking it before either taking a review course and/or reading a book. It is a tricky computer adaptive test so it's not like the normal tests you've taken. You can't skip questions and it's on a screen so you can't highlight during the reading passages.

23 Jun, 2021 02:23 PM

EASY, I took it and passed it the first time and didn't even study.
Also, graduate schools don't require a high grade, don't worry it's an easy exam (a lot easier than the 8 hour exam for engineering school).

23 Jun, 2021 02:24 PM

It's brainlessly easy! The math section barely touches into Calculus (mostly it's basic algebra). The vocabulary can be a bit tricky, but really isn't all that difficult if you are a frequent reader. I scored very well.