How To Study For Your GRE Retake
Posted on
05
Nov 2021

How To Study For Your GRE Retake

You’ve studied countless hours, canceled plans with numerous friends, and even changed your diet and caffeine consumption to fuel your brain as best as possible. And yet, after all that, your final combined score result is just a 320. Not bad, but also not perfect. This score can get you into most graduate school programs, but can it get you into that elite ‘top’ school you are aiming for? If you have the resume and top-notch essay responses to back up your GRE score, then you may feel comfortable applying to your dream graduate school with that score.

But what if you are still unsure? Is it worth spending the hundreds of dollars, and continuing the stringent study plan you had just spent months trudging through to try again? Perhaps a second attempt means you will bump up your score to a 324, or maybe your second attempt will land you with a score of equal or – gulp – lesser value! After going through the cost-benefit analysis of such an undertaking, you may have decided on the undertaking of retaking the GRE.

But how do you study for the GRE the second time to guarantee a higher score?

You are not alone in asking this question, and, unfortunately, there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ answer or study plan that can guarantee a higher score and make the retake worthwhile financially and timewise. However, there are some things you can begin doing now which can help you embark on your GRE retake journey.

1. Book the GRE retake sooner rather than later

Deciding on ‘when’ to retake the GRE can have a huge effect on your ability to succeed in the test. We suggest booking the retake sooner rather than later. This will help set a definite timeline of how long you must study and how you can expect to structure the coming weeks. Additionally, don’t wait months to retake the GRE. Once you have decided that you will retake the exam, be sure to schedule it a couple of weeks after the last test you took. While it may seem to be a time crunch, this is because you are not starting from scratch when studying for your retake. You already have a whole host of wealth stuck in your head! It will hang around for a few weeks, requiring only brief reviews and refreshers to keep the knowledge up to date.

2. Focus on your weaknesses

So, you have taken your first GRE test. You now know how you test under time pressure, and you can adjust your studying accordingly. Did you find that you struggled with the time constraints? We suggest focusing on different studying methods which will help you feel more comfortable under the time constraints. During the test you may realize that you did not study enough for certain quantitative-type questions, or your GRE vocabulary was lacking. In this case, spend time before your retake focusing on the areas you found most challenging. By no means does this mean ‘ignoring’ your strengths, rather, spend the most time on your weakness, being sure to set aside a few hours a week to review and rehash the parts of the exam you feel most comfortable with.

3. Consult with your network

Whether you recognize it or not, the people around you are important to your mental health and wellbeing. Because studying for the GRE is a mentally draining venture, relying on your network can help you get through the most difficult aspects of studying for the GRE. As you already experienced over the last few months of studying, an effective student may opt for moments of quiet study rather than social events with friends and family. This doesn’t change your second time around taking the test.

However, your friends and family may be disappointed to hear that you are extending your absences from events further to study for your second round. It is important, then, to confer with them. Let them know what you are doing and why. Perhaps someone in your network had a similar experience and they can offer you advice and tips on how to rock your second round. Additionally, do not be shy to let them know how you are feeling and how they can best support you during your studying. This can help alleviate any further stress you may accumulate during the time you sequester away over the books.

4. Get a private tutor

It may seem obvious but hiring a private tutor who specializes in the GRE can help push you to the next level. Often, your struggles with the GRE can be alleviated by the unique perspectives and solution paths a private tutor can give you. Our GRE tutors at ApexGRE specialize in working with students who want to achieve an elite score and are looking to develop the skills to do just that. We invite all interested potential clients to sign-up HERE for a complimentary consultation call where we can discuss your GRE and graduate school goals. Our tutors are happy to work with an array of clients. Whether it is their first or fifth time taking the GRE and whether they have 6 months to prepare or just a few weeks, we can work within your time frame and skill level to help you achieve your goals.

Finally, deciding to retake the GRE means countless more hours of hard work. Deciding whether it is worth it is up to you, however, being prepared for the process of retaking the GRE can help alleviate the stress of the decision.


Contributor: Dana Coggio

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GRE, GMAT, or EA - Which Test Should You Take For Business School?
Posted on
29
Oct 2021

GRE, GMAT, or EA – Which Test Should You Take For Business School?

So you’re dreaming of getting your MBA. Part of the hurdle of applying to business school is taking a standardized test to fulfill application requirements. With so many different standardized tests being offered, and with numerous schools allowing applicants to take different exams, it is often hard to know which exam best aligns with your goals. We have broken down the top three standardized testing options for MBA programs so that future MBAs can have a better grasp on their application process.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

What is GRE?

The Graduate Record Examination, or GRE, allows prospective graduates with varying educational backgrounds to apply for master’s, MBA, or doctoral degrees to “show off” their skills to prospective schools. The GRE is accepted by thousands of graduate schools, including business and law schools.

Why do you need GRE?

Besides being accepted at graduate schools with a variety of backgrounds, in recent years the GRE exam is also accepted by many prestigious MBA programs too. However, be mindful that the GMAT is still the most relevant exam which you can take to show off your skills.  Especially when it comes to the field of business. One of the reasons behind this is that the GMAT was specifically designed for MBA programs and business school admissions. Also, unlike the GRE, the GMAT has an additional section – the integrated reasoning section – which will give you the possibility to prove your data analytical skills. We aren’t trying to scare you away from taking the GRE. You must decide on the right path for you. For example, if you believe you will perform better on the GRE than on the GMAT then deciding to take the GRE is the best decision for you.

What is the content of the GRE exam made of?

The content of the GRE is divided into three sections, these being: analytical writing section, quantitative section, and verbal section. The first section measures your ability to communicate complex ideas and use standard written English to prove an argument. The second section is to measure your ability to solve math, algebra, and geometry problems. The last section is to measure your ability to analyze sentences and writing passages.

GRE Scores Explained

The GRE score range is from 130 to 170; 130 is the lowest possible score, whereas 170 is the highest. The verbal and quantitative sections are scored from 130 to 170 and the analytical writing section is scored from 0 to 6 points.

Where to begin?

Similar to GMAT, once you decide on taking the GRE you need to plan your future steps: how to prepare? With whom to prepare? In-person or online? Etc. If you are interested in working with an experienced GRE tutor to help you prepare, we offer individualized and specialized tutoring for motivated students.

The Graduate Admission Management Test (GMAT)

What is the GMAT?

If you are aiming for your dream MBA school, the GMAT is an important part of the application process. The test is developed and administered by the Graduate Management Admissions Council (GMAC). Your final GMAT scores can help bolster your chances of getting into your dream MBA program. While scores are not an exclusive part of the admissions committee’s decision, the GMAT is still taken into consideration during the admission’s process as it evaluates the necessary skills needed to succeed in business school. Additionally, the process of studying for the GMAT emphasizes the qualities necessary to advance your future business career.

Why do you need the GMAT?

Once you go through the GMAT preparation phase and you are ready to reach your GMAT goal, you will get the opportunity to stand out among other applicants and raise your chances of getting in. A high score on the GMAT will have a positive impact on your business school application.

What is the content of the GMAT exam made of?

The GMAT exam has four sections: analytical writing assessment which aims to measure your ability to think critically, integrated reasoning is for measuring your ability to analyze data and evaluate information that is presented in multiple formats, quantitative reasoning is used for measuring your ability to analyze data, and lastly, verbal reasoning measures your skills to read and understand written materials to conform to standard written English.

Good to know: before the test begins, you can determine the order you wish to take each section of the exam in.

GMAT Scores Explained

The score that many business schools and MBA programs pay the most attention to is the combined 200-800 score scale. Each section of GMAT has a separate scoring system: the analytical written assessment is scored from 0 to 6, whereas the integrated reasoning is scored on a 1 to 8 scale. In addition, the quantitative and verbal sections each have a scale score of 0 to 60. In the end, they are all combined to generate a score on the 200 to 800 scale which is the one you are most familiar with.

Where to begin?

Let’s say that you decided to take the GMAT, what are the steps that you need in order to reach your GMAT high score? First, you need to decide if you are going to start this journey on your own or you need a tutor to help you out. First of all, we suggest deciding on how you structure your GMAT studying. Are you hoping to find a premier GMAT tutor? Are you planning on doing it solo? Will you study with friends? Do you want to be part of a GMAT prep group? Figuring out how you want to study is vital to begin the process of GMAT preparation on the right foot.

If you need a 700+ GMAT score, check out our tutors here at Apex GMAT who are ready to help you from anywhere in the world! 

Executive Assessment Test (EA)

What is the EA?

The Executive Assessment, or EA, is an admission exam designed for Executive MBA programs. Just like the GMAT, the EA is also administered by the GMAC.

Why do you need EA?

Besides being an indicator of your skills for your admission process towards an EMBA program, the EA mainly helps already experienced managers, who want to advance their careers, get to even higher levels by attending an Executive MBA program. Most MBA programs and EMBA programs accept the EA as an admissions exam from applicants who have a certain number of years of professional work experience under their belt.

What is the content of the EA exam made of?

The EA test is composed of three sections: integrated reasoning, verbal reasoning, and quantitative reasoning with a total of 40 questions. These sections test similar qualities to that of the GMAT exam.

EA Scores Explained

The scale for each section is from 0 to 20 with a total scale range from 100 to 200. All three sections are equally weighted in determining your final score. 

Where to begin?

You guessed it: the same as for GMAT and GRE, there are a few decisions to make before starting your EA journey. Look for a platform, a tutor, and plenty of other tools that can be beneficial for you to reach your EA high score.

Which one is the best for you?

After familiarizing yourself with the above-mentioned standardized tests you might wonder which one to go for. This all depends on what you are aiming for. From business school admissions to advancing your career, each of these tests can help you prove specific and required skills in different fields. Once you decide what your goal is, it will be easier to decide which test is the best way to show your strength and skills and to get into the program of your dreams!

Contributor: Arin Agich 

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GRE Quantitative
Posted on
15
Oct 2021

Everything about the Quantitative Reasoning Section of the GRE

By: ApexGMAT
Contributor: Simona Mkhitaryan
Date: October 15, 2021

As mentioned in the previous Article, GRE consists of 3 main sections: Analytical Writing, Verbal Reasoning, and Quantitative Reasoning. There is also one unscored section which can be either quantitative or verbal. This article concentrates on the Quantitative Reasoning section of GRE. 

How long is the Quantitative Reasoning section? 

The Quantitative Reasoning section of the GRE has 20 questions with a total of 35 minutes, 1.5 to 2 minutes to answer each question. It is helpful to know that the number of question types included in the exam is different. The Quantitative Comparison questions come first, then Problem Solving questions and Data Interpretation questions, presented as a set at the end of the section. 

What does Quantitative Reasoning measure, and why is it important?

The quantitative reasoning section of GRE measures the ability to solve different types of mathematical problems, interpret and analyze quantitative data, demonstrate basic knowledge of algebra, geometry, data analysis, and arithmetic. The test does not cover trigonometry, calculus, or higher-level math; it will be enough to have the level of Algebra 2. 

  • Arithmetic: This section includes problems connected with divisibility, factorization, working with prime numbers, remainders, odd/even integers. It also touches upon topics such as arithmetic operations, exponents, roots, and other topics such as estimation, percent, ratio, rate, absolute value, number line, decimal representation, as well as sequences of numbers. An example can be ‘What are the factors of 13’, or ‘Which of the following is closest to the square root of 10.5’?
  • Algebra: This part mostly concentrates on equations and functions such as factoring and simplifying functions, and working with inequalities. It also includes coordinate geometry that is working with graphs of functions, intercepts, and slopes of lines. Examples include find the distance between the points (-4 , -6) and (-1 , -2) or solve the equation |- 2 x + 2| – 3 = -3 or find the x-intercept of the equation 2x – 4y = 9.
  • Geometry: This area covers topics related to 2-dimensional figures and three-dimensional figures: parallel and perpendicular lines, circles, triangles, quadrilaterals, other polygons, congruent and similar figures, area, perimeter, volume, and concepts such as the Pythagorean theorem and angle measurement in degrees. For instance, find the hypotenuse of the triangle using the Pythagorean theorem, or triangles ABC and A’B’C’ are similar figures; find the length AB if you know the ratio between the triangles.
  • Data analysis: This part is mainly focused on interpreting data from graphs such as bar and circle graphs; box plots, and scatter plots; finding the mean, median, mode, range, standard deviation, interquartile range, quartiles, and percentiles, analyzing frequency distributions, probability types of questions as well as counting methods such as combinations, permutations, and Venn diagrams. Examples include when a number x is added to the data set 4, 8, 20, 25, 32, the new mean is 15. Find the value of x. Another one is on a six-sided die; each side has a number between 1 and 6. What is the probability of throwing a three or a 4?
What types of questions does the GRE Quantitative Reasoning Section include? 

There are four types of questions in the GRE Quantitative Reasoning section:

  • Quantitative Comparison Questions – These types of questions are similar to the “Data Sufficiency” questions on the GMAT. 2 values will be given and four options to choose from such as 1) quantity X is bigger, 2) quantity Y is bigger, 3) the quantities are equal, 4) there’s not enough information to know which is bigger.
  • Multiple-choice Questions with one correct answer – usually Problem solving questions or data interpretation.
  • Multiple-choice Questions with more than one answer. – usually, Problem-solving questions, which are much like quantitative questions on the SAT or data interpretation.
  • Numeric Entry Questions – Problem-solving or data interpretation. 

The questions can appear independently or as a group of questions usually associated with a “Data interpretation” set. The data is generally displayed in graphs, tables, charts, or other informational displays. Some of the questions on the Quantitative Reasoning section of the GRE are purely mathematical. However, there are also real-life problems and word problems that must be interpreted and solved mathematically. 

Is a calculator allowed on the Quantitative Reasoning Section of the GRE?

Unlike the GMAT, using a specific GRE calculator during the Quantitative Reasoning section is permitted. For paper-delivered GRE, the GRE calculator will be provided during the test, but the examinees cannot bring their own to the exam. For computer-based GRE, one can use the on-screen calculator. However, simple calculations are often quicker and safer to solve without a calculator to avoid entry errors. As mentioned, not all calculators are allowed during the exam. 

So, what can the GRE calculator be used for?  

  • Add, subtract, divide, multiply 
  • Parenthesize
  • Take the square root of
  • Add a decimal to 
  • Change signs
  • Store the answers via memory keys
  • Display up to eight digits at a time

The calculator doesn’t include exponents, constants like π or e, logarithmic (ln, log) or trigonometric (sine, cosine, tangent) functions, nested parentheses, or the ability to square or cube. 

What is the maximum score for the Quantitative Reasoning Section of the GRE? 

Each QR and VR are scored on a range of 130-170 points, making the highest possible score on the GRE a 340. Additionally, it is essential to know that the GRE is a section-adaptive test. Within each section, all questions are in the same level of complexity and are contributed equally to the final score. Unlike GMAT, GRE is adaptive at the level of the section. This means that the questions will not change within each section, yet the second complete set of 20 questions in the next section will.

How to prepare for the Quantitative Reasoning Section of the GRE

First of all, it is vital to learn the structure of the questions: In order to get familiar with the types of questions, the easiest way is to take various practice tests to become familiar with the format and then concentrate on actually solving the problems and getting the highest score possible. Find out practice problems can be found in the GRE Quantitative Reasoning Practice Problems. 

Thus, it is also essential to set a target score: Taking a practice test is an excellent starting point. This determines the level of your initial score. It also helps to identify how much time one has to allocate to the preparation to improve their score and achieve their goal target. 

Make a study plan and stick with the schedule: It is vital to design a personalized study plan to guide throughout the preparation, decide what sources and courses one needs, whether they are going to prepare only with tests, or go step by step through topics and types of quant questions moreover considering to take courses with a GRE private tutor, with whom one will get a lot of help and guidance in their GRE preparation creed. For more information about the Quant GRE tutoring and preparation, visit https://apexgre.com/inquire-now/.

Also, sticking to the study schedule is critical since one has to continue studying consistently in order to see progress, especially when the talk is about mathematics. 

Conclusion:

In conclusion, as mentioned above, the quant section of GRE has four types of questions that measure the ability to understand and solve the basic problems of mathematics, which also include data interpretation. A calculator will be provided during the QR section. Additionally, the QR section of the GRE required comprehensive studies and preparation; that is why it is useful to schedule and start preparing for the exam a few months earlier.

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10 things you should consider before you begin your GRE prep
Posted on
17
Sep 2021

10 Things You Should Consider Before You Begin Your GRE Exam Prep

By: ApexGMAT
Contributor: Simona Mkhitaryan
Date: September 17, 2021

The Structure of GRE Exam 

The GRE test is a 3-hour 45-minutes (10 minutes break, included) exam with 3 main sections:  Analytical Writing, Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and an unidentified/unscored section. The Analytical Writing section will always be the first section, then the Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and unidentified/unscored sections may appear in any order. The unscored experimental section can be either quantitative or verbal.

The GRE can be taken in two formats: computer-based and paper test. The content for each type of test is the same, but there can be some differences between the timing and the number of questions. 

Scores: The official GRE scores for computer-based exams are available within 10-15 days after the test date and for paper-delivered tests within five weeks. The scores will also be sent to the particular institutions you want. 

Retaking process: When taking the paper-delivered test, you can retake the GRE as many times as you want. However, if you took the GRE test via computer, you can retake it once every 21 days and up to five times a year.

Cost: The standard fee for GRE is US$205. 

GRE Sections

2 GRE Sections are Section-Level Adaptive 

The GRE Quantitative and Verbal Reasoning sections are section-level adaptive. So, what does it mean? It means that an algorithm selects successive sections based on the previous sections’ performance. The final score is then composed of each section’s score equally. 

GRE Scores are Valid for Five Years

GRE test score is valid for five years. Hence, before taking or preparing for the GRE, it is essential to know the validity of the exam to plan when to take the GRE properly. If you already have a particular school or program you want to apply to, you have to schedule your test based on the deadlines the school has defined. Nonetheless, it would also be good if you keep in mind the validity time frame on the off chance that you are as yet uncertain about when you will apply to schools.

The Maximum Score of GRE Exam

The highest total GRE score is 340, a 170 both for Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning. Unlike other tests, GRE scores are presented separately. So, when you send your GRE results you will probably send three separate scores for each section. Moreover, the Analytical Writing Section is scored on an independent scale from 0-6. If you already know which university you are going to apply to, pay attention to whether the university or program has any section preferences or not. 

Average GRE Scores

GRE Score Ranges

The GRE Calculator 

Unlike the GMAT, you can use a specific GRE calculator during the Quantitative Reasoning section. For paper-delivered GRE, the GRE calculator will be provided during the test, but you cannot bring your own to the exam. For computer-based GRE you can use the on-screen calculator. However, simple calculations are often quicker and safer to solve without a calculator, to avoid entry errors.

As mentioned not all calculators are allowed during the exam. So, what GRE calculator can be used for?  

  • Add, subtract, divide, multiply 
  • Parenthesize
  • Take the square root of
  • Add a decimal to 
  • Change signs
  • Store the answers via memory keys
  • Display up to eight digits at a time

The calculator doesn’t include exponents, constants like π or e, logarithmic (ln, log) or trigonometric (sine, cosine, tangent) functions, nested parentheses, or the ability to square or cube. 

GRE Exam Acceptance and Graduate Programs

The GRE as the GMAT is a common and widely accepted exam for graduate programs. It is common in the USA, Canada, Australia, etc. As GMAT usually serves for the MBA Program, the GRE is recognized by several business schools and has GRE Subject tests which are available in fields such as chemistry, mathematics, physics, biology, literature in English, and psychology. So, as a matter of fact, the GRE is used not only in business programs but also in various areas.

Defining Strengths and Weaknesses  

This analysis will help you know what you are good at and what you need to improve. First of all, plan your strategy about how you are going to analyze your weaknesses and strengths. It can be by taking the GRE practice test once and then figuring out which areas you felt particularly weak or strong in.

Another option is to maintain a notebook for a week and mark down the weaknesses and strengths you encounter during your initial studying. Via this analysis, you might get a sense of whether you are good at time management, what your speed is, and much more. During the analysis, try to identify which question types are the most challenging for you in each section. Figure out what soft skills you have that might help you during the exam and pinpoint the ones that need improvement. After that, conclude and start working on developing new skills and overcoming weaknesses. Always keep in mind having a realistically achievable goal for the final target as a score. Scoring a 300 + on the GRE exam isn’t an easy thing! 

Developing a Study Schedule 

After acknowledging your strengths and weaknesses, design a personalized study plan to guide you throughout your preparation, decide what sources and courses you need, whether you are going to prepare only with tests, or go step by step through topics and sections. You should start preparing for the GRE at least three to six months before the test date, so try not to cram at the last minute! Schedule your learning format and decide which strategy fits the best with your prep level.

You might also consider taking courses with a GRE private tutor, from whom you will get a lot of help and guidance in your GRE preparation creed. This will make your prep easier since you will stick to your study schedule and know ahead of time when you should be studying. Hence, prioritizing your GRE study schedule and then fitting the rest of your day around it will be more effective.  

Using Flashcards and Other Study Methods to Prep for the GRE Exam 

During GRE preparation, it is vital to use practical and helpful materials that will guide your preparation process. It is essential to know which study method works best. Eventually, most of the time, GRE requires self-study mode. However, besides that, you can take online GRE classes, in-person GRE classes, and finally prepare with a private tutor/instructor who will help you with their knowledge and experience.

Flashcards are another great way to study and make quick notes on GRE sections. While preparing for the GRE, the Verbal Reasoning section tests the knowledge of advanced and sophisticated vocabulary. It is an excellent way to write the words on flashcards and start practicing. The GRE Quantitative Reasoning questions test your knowledge of four main subjects you need to concentrate on while preparing and practicing for the GRE: Algebra, Arithmetic, Data Analysis, and Geometry. Hence, make sure to use the right and most comfortable study methods that fit your schedule the most. 

The GRE Exam Timing 

 When preparing for the GRE, try to keep track of your time to allocate it equally to each section. However, do this step after identifying what concepts are complicated for you to allocate more time on those topics and train yourself to solve those problems. Practice pacing because, during the  GRE, time management is critical to complete the exam. The worst scenario in the GRE is that sometimes the test takers run out of time towards the end. This is because some of the test takers do not stick with the time and fall behind. Thus, set and stick to certain time milestones to finish the exam on time. Getting every question on the GRE right doesn’t do you much good if you can’t answer all the questions within the time limit. 

Conclusion 

In conclusion, before preparing for the GRE, be sure to first familiarize yourself with the  GRE structure, the cost, maximum score, acceptance, GRE calculator, and format. Then define your weaknesses and strengths, develop a study plan, use different study methods and hit the green light! Finally, while practicing for the GRE, try to keep track of time and concentrate on learning rather than answering all the questions correctly. 

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GRE Prep Calendar: How To Create Your Perfect GRE Prep Calendar?
Posted on
05
Sep 2021

GRE Prep Calendar: How to create your perfect GRE prep calendar

Introduction

Congratulations, you have decided to continue with your education! Deciding to attend graduate school is a big step. It will open up doors to further opportunities for you, both intellectually and professionally. Having a master’s degree under your belt can help you earn that promotion you have always wanted or allow you to pivot your post-undergrad career into an area you are super passionate about! Regardless of why you are deciding to attend graduate school, one large hurdle stands in your way: the Graduate Record Examination or GRE for short. 

For many, the GRE can seem like a daunting task. Especially for those individuals who are returning to school years after completing their undergrad. But the task of successfully studying for and taking the GRE is doable. As long as you are driven, determined, and willing to set a strict study schedule, your graduate school dreams are within your grasp. 

Here at ApexGRE, we have created the perfect GRE calendar preparation for future GRE test takers. By following the simple steps we have laid out, you can get the most out of your GRE preparation and ace your exam! 

Steps to your Perfect GRE Prep Calendar

First, grab a calendar, yearly planner, or your phone. You will need to mark the dates and times necessary for studying. 

1. Figure out when you want to take the GRE

Once you have figured out what you want to study, you need to find the perfect graduate school programs. For most graduate schools, a GRE entrance exam is required. Some schools offer GRE waivers, however, these are rare and are usually offered on a case-by-case basis. Once you have found the programs you are applying to, check out their application deadlines. Based on these deadlines, you can figure out when you need to take the GRE. It would be suggested to take the GRE well before the admissions deadlines. Often, your GRE scores last at least 5-years, meaning you could technically take the GRE a few years before you apply to graduate school. However, here at Apex, we suggest you take the GRE at least a couple of months before the admissions deadline. This is because, if you happen to get a score lower than expected, you will have time to retake the test and aim for a one.
Count back 3 months from the test date. THIS is the day you will begin your official GRE test prep.

2. Take a free practice test

Before you even begin studying for the GRE, you need to take a practice exam. By taking a practice exam, you will know right away where your strengths and weaknesses are. It will also give you a baseline to know how to study and which parts of the exam require the most effort and attention. By keeping track of your score, you will also see your progress as you go along your test prep journey. 

Determine Strengths and Weaknesses

3. Capitalizing on when you can best prep. 

Are you a morning bird? A night owl? Do you find your brain works best during the afternoon? Knowing this about yourself can help you set your daily study schedule. If you find that your brain works best bright and early, then try to carve out an hour or two each morning to study before heading off to work or going to class. If you enjoy studying late at night, then find time after work or after dinner where you can spend two hours preparing. Once you have decided what time of day you want to study, it is important to keep a daily schedule. It is best to find a rhythm that you work best with so that your mind and body are prepared to study each day. 

Are you a Morning Bird? A Night Owl? 

4. Week 1 – GRE Basics

Great. You have decided on your test date, you have counted backward by 3 months, and you have determined what time of day you wish to study. Pull out your calendar, yearly planner, or phone and mark out the first week. Putting aside 1 or 2 hours each day in either the morning or the night where you study for the GRE. During this first week, you will get acquainted with the GRE Test Basics.
– Become familiar with the GRE format and content. Prepare yourself for what you are about to encounter during the next 3 months and on the day of your GRE exam. A good start is reading articles that introduce you to GRE’s structure, sections, timing, and scoring. 
– Analyze the results from your practice test. As you are in the process of reviewing the results of your practice test, it would be helpful to ask yourself some questions to better understand the difficulties you encountered. When analyzing the solutions of some questions you got wrong or maybe you weren’t totally confident about, take note of any patterns. What section/s did you find most challenging? Which types of questions within each section were you struggling most with? Also, don’t forget to ask yourself questions about the “bigger picture” like: Were you able to finish every section? Did you feel anxious? How did you feel at the end of the test?

5. Week 2 – Quant Section

Great, it’s week two! During your first week, you have overviewed what to expect on the GRE overall. Now it is time to get a little bit more specific. Keeping your same daily schedule (whether you study in the AM or PM), change your study content to familiarize yourself with the GRE quant section. Read about which types of quantitative questions and content that you are most likely to come across during your 3 months of preparation, mock tests, and the GRE test.

Review GRE Math. Before diving deeper into preparing for this section, take some time to brush up on some of the formulas, definitions, and topics of the Maths section. Make flashcards with the necessary formulas so you can memorize which formula should be used for which problem(s). If you found that during the practice test the quantitative section was easy-breezy, consider studying exceptionally difficult problems. Since the GRE is a computer adaptive test,  your questions will get exceedingly harder the more right answers you give. The more questions you answer correctly, the more difficult they will become, and thus the more likely you are to receive a higher score. 

Learn the underlying concepts related to each topic (percents, ratios, exponents, statistics, etc). In this section, you will come across some specific wording that can be fundamental to finding the solution to the problems. In order to not get stuck during the exam and waste your precious time, learning about the most frequently used concepts is helpful.

6. Week 3 – Verbal Section

It’s week three! Bearing in mind how you have been studying for the past two weeks, be sure to maintain your same study schedule for this week. During this week it is time to get acquainted with the GRE verbal section. A great way to start working with the verbal section is to become familiar with the overall structure of this section. To learn more about this section, how it is scored, and some insights about its subsections click here.

Learn how to tackle each type of question. There are three types of questions in the verbal section (Reading Comprehension, Sentence Completion, and Sentence Equivalence) and their purpose is to test certain skills. This means that for each of them you have to use particular strategies. 

Tip. It’s more effective to concentrate on one area at a time. So, while preparing for this section, choose one subsection and stick with it for a couple of days. For example, your third week could look something like this: Monday & Tuesday Reading Comprehension, Wednesday & Thursday Sentence Completion, and Friday & Saturday Sentence Equivalence, with Sunday being a rest day.

7. Week 4 – Monthly check-in

It has been a month since you started studying. If you have stuck to your study schedule, you have most definitely made progress. Now it is time to put that progress to the test! 

Take your second practice test. As the saying goes “Practice makes perfect.” The more you get yourself exposed to GRE practice exams, the more likely you are to achieve your desired score.

Review your results. While looking at the answer explanations, pay attention to the solutions of the questions you got incorrectly.  

Practice the type of questions you are having difficulties with. Identify the questions where you are spending more time than you should. Read some articles that recommend tips, strategies, and tactics that can assist in solving them faster. 

8. Week 5 – Quant Review

It is week five, and you now have two practice tests under your belt. You should be seeing progress in your ability to take the exam. Time to refine your reviewing and fortify your strengths while strengthening your weaknesses in the Quant section. 

Practice and enhance your knowledge of data analysis, Geometry, Algebra, and Arithmetic questions. Now that you are familiar with these terms it’s a good time to start reading some strategies on how to tackle these types of questions. After doing that, practicing what you just learned by solving problems focused particularly on these types of questions is extremely beneficial to your progress. 

Practice and enhance your knowledge of quantitative question types. There are four types of quant questions. These are Quantitative Comparison Questions, Multiple Choice (one answer), Multiple Choice (one or more answers), and Numeric Entry Questions. Memorize how these question types look so that you are prepared for the official exam. 

9. Week 6 – Verbal Review

Practice and enhance your knowledge of Sentence Equivalence questions. You can find articles about tips specifically about these types of questions and while practicing you be sure to make use of them. Another practical thing to do is read about articles related to common mistakes and how to avoid them. 

Practice and enhance your knowledge of Sentence Correction questions. Additionally, as was mentioned above, these types of questions concentrate on reviewing a few basic grammar concepts and skills.

Practice and enhance your knowledge of Reading Comprehension questions. Besides reading articles related to tips and common mistakes, reading Reading Comprehension-like writing is an excellent way to familiarize yourself with the style and content of Reading Comprehension passages.

10. Week 7 – Analytical Writing Section

Make yourself acquainted with the GRE Analytical Writing section. This is the step that, as you have seen so far, applies to every section. You can’t anticipate doing well on a task without knowing what is expected from you. 

Review sample Analytical Writing templates. This is something that might come in handy when you need to format your essays. With some modifications, these templates can be used on test day. 

Practice. Practice. Practice. Writing a couple of essays in a day will help you master your timing and get used to the structure you may use on your GRE essay.

11. Week 8 – Monthly Progress Check

Time for another practice test!  After studying for almost every section, taking some mock tests will assist in keeping track of your progress. 

Review your results. This time try to identify the topics you are still not comfortable with. Solely taking mock tests without analyzing the explanations to questions is not going to be much help. 

Practice the type of questions you are struggling with. After analyzing these practice tests and understanding the patterns of your weaknesses, working more on the questions you find challenging leads to score improvements.

12. Week 9 – Review your Weaknesses, solidify your strengths

You have been spending a lot of your time preparing for the GRE. It is an arduous journey, but you’re not alone! During week 9, it is best to spend time reviewing the parts of the exam that you are most struggling with. Whether it is quantitative or verbal, spend a few hours a day reviewing those parts of the exam that you are most worried about. 

At the same time solidify your strengths. If you are a powerhouse on the verbal section, that doesn’t mean you should no longer study that portion. Switch between your strengths and weaknesses during this week in both the verbal and quantitative sections. If you know of someone else who is taking the GRE, get together with them and swap tips and tricks on how they are tackling studying. Finding a study buddy is especially helpful as you can both be emotional support from one another! 

13. Week 10 – Time and Stress Management

Some other significant factors to consider while working on preparing for the GRE test are time and stress management. A good start is reading a handful of blogs and articles that suggest many tips and strategies that can help you improve your time and stress management skills.

14. Week 11 – Review and Relax 

During the last week don’t put a lot of pressure on yourself. Instead, try to take care of your mind and body as much as you can. One last brief review focused primarily on the sections or type of questions you struggled most with is going to be enough.  Finally, the most important tip, don’t forget to enjoy your GRE preparation journey.

We at the Apex team hope that you find this GRE study plan helpful. If you want to discuss your progress and possibly have some one-on-one preparation sessions with us, we would be happy to help, set up a complimentary consultation call with a GRE instructor here

 

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GRE Test Day
Posted on
02
Mar 2021

GRE Test Day FAQ

Should I arrive early at the test center on test day?

Yes, you should arrive early at the test center as there is a check-in procedure that you have to go through before taking the exam. Make sure to be there at least 30 minutes early. If you are 15 minutes late on test day, the administrators may not allow you to take the exam.

What is the check-in procedure?

Once you show up at the test center, you have to present a valid GRE-approved photo ID to the administrators. They may ask you to raise your hands and leg pants above the ankles to be sure you are not bringing any unregulated test aids into the center with you . will take your picture, signature, and fingerprints and they will ask you to sign a GRE confidentiality statement to where you agree to the rules and regulations. 

What documents should I bring to the test center?

There are 2 things you’ll definitely need with you on exam day. Firstly, make sure to bring your GRE-approved photo ID which contains your name, your date of birth, a recent photograph, and your signature (a passport, a national ID card, or a driving’s license). You will not be allowed to take the GRE if you don’t present that document. Another thing to definitely bring with you on test day would be your appointment confirmation letter or email. It is not necessary that you bring that with you, however, it is good to have it on you in case of a misunderstanding or mistake in the system.

Pro tip: It is also a good idea to bring a list of your choice of graduate programs that you want your scores sent to. You don’t want to have to decide that on exam day.

What am I allowed to bring into the exam room?

You are not allowed to bring anything with you into the exam room, as everything will be provided for you. Electronic devices like phones, tablets, smartwatches, etc. are also not allowed. Even though you can bring snacks and water with you to the test center, you will not be allowed to take them with you into the exam room, as you’ll be asked to put them in a storage room or locker. However, you will be able to access those during your breaks.

Am I allowed to bring a calculator?

Personal calculators are not allowed when taking the GRE exam, so it is best to leave it at home. In fact, it is a good idea to leave any electronic device that you will not need at home.

Is there a dress code that I should follow?

There is no specific dress code for the test day, however, you should make sure that you dress comfortably and that you bring extra clothes in case it is cold in the exam room.

What do I do if my computer stops working while taking the GRE?

If that is the case, one thing that you should not do is try to fix the computer by yourself. The best way to handle that situation is to raise your hand and ask for the administrator’s help.

What is the best way to handle disruptions while taking the GRE?

According to the policies, any disruptive situation that deviates from normal testing procedures will be thoroughly examined and the decision will be made on a case-to-case basis. In that case, you might be allowed to retake the exam with no additional charge or you can ask for a refund of the initial test fee. Nevertheless, there will be noises such as coughing, shifting, and other small sounds that can distract you during the exam. In order to avoid this affecting your concentration drastically, spend some time practicing for the exam in an uncontrolled environment, such as a coffee shop to get yourself used to the movement and sounds of others while practice focusing on your prep.

Will I be given something to write on during the exam?

You will be provided with pens and scratch paper by the test administrators once you are seated. If you are taking the online GRE there is an on-screen scratchpad and recently introduced a pre-approved scratch paper option.

Do we get breaks during the exam?

As the GRE exam takes a lot of time to complete, you will be allowed to go on a 10-minute break after the 3rd portion of the test, and you will receive a 1-minute break between all other sections. Our instructors advise you to take advantage of this time for what it is meant for, a break. Clear your mind from exam activities and try to focus on relaxing. Eating a snack is always encouraged as this will give you an energy boost, just make sure that it is the right type of snack.

What do I do if I am not feeling well on test day?

Generally, it is not a good idea to take the GRE exam if you’re not feeling too well on test day, as the GRE is long and your health can potentially affect your progress and final score. Be careful, if you have to reschedule your test within four days of the exam, you will forfeit your registration fee and will need to pay the original registration costs all over again.

How many times can I take the GRE exam?

There is no limit on the number of times you can take the GRE exam (you can take the GRE exam up to 5 times in a 12-month period). However, it is not advised that you take it more than 3 times as it may give the wrong impression to graduate schools and it’s unlikely that your scores will improve that drastically in between exams.

How do I send my GRE scores to the schools I am applying to?

You will get a few options regarding when to send the GRE scores to the schools of your choice. Firstly, you can bring a list of graduate schools on test day and your scores will be sent to those programs free of charge. Another option would be waiting to get your official score and then sending them to the schools of your choice. In this case, you’ll have to pay $27 USD for each school that your scores are sent to.

Let us know if you have any additional questions regarding your GRE test day and one of our Top 1% Scored Instructors will be happy to answer them.

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6 GRE Tips
Posted on
02
Mar 2021

6 Tips To Improve Your GRE Quant Score

By: Apex GMAT
Date: March 2, 2021

If you’ve experienced the GRE, you may have noticed that your score is higher on some sections than others. Some otherwise strong graduate school candidates struggle with their score on the quantitative section. The problem might derive from preparation style, in which case, you might consider professional GRE tutoring, a service offered by a number of organizations including Apex GRE. Until then, these tips will help kick start your prep process so you’re ready to ace the quant section.

What’s on the GRE Quantitative section?

First, let’s talk about what exactly the GRE quant section consists of. Test takers have 70 minutes to answer 40 math problems. This means that on average, each question should take about two minutes. However, this isn’t a hard rule, so there’s no need to get nervous if one problem takes longer than others.

The GRE focuses on numerous types of math skills, the majority of which have been learned and taught in your high school courses. Most likely, when studying for the GRE, you will have to brush up on and study these concepts.

Why is the GRE Quantitative section so difficult?

Based on the above description, you might think that the quant section won’t be too difficult. That isn’t exactly true. The GRE is designed to confuse and restrict test-takers in various ways. For example, each problem has a time limit and calculators aren’t allowed. Furthermore, the two sections don’t differentiate between the various types of questions, so test-takers must alternate between the question types. These factors can cause stress.

6 Tips To Improve Your GRE Quant Score

The following tips will help you remain calm and collected as you prepare for the quant section.

Tip 1: Don’t overthink the math

First and foremost, don’t forget that the GRE quant section consists of simple math problems. Use this to your advantage. Don’t do all of the calculations; rather, determine what makes a problem look more difficult than it actually is.

Tip 2: Start managing your time before the test

You can start saving time before you even pick up your pencil by practicing arithmetic. Limiting the time it takes to do simple equations means you can spend more time on the problems. Be sure to review exponent rules and brush up on decimals with fractions. And don’t forget about higher powers!

Tip 3: Use alternative strategies to find solutions

If you can’t solve a problem with simple math, try using an alternative path to the solution. There’s usually an easier way to solve quant problems –the GRE is designed to test for efficient problem-solving. Sometimes, straightforward logic or plugging in numbers will solve a problem faster. Keep in mind that a traditional approach might not be necessary for every problem.

Tip 4: Analyze each sentence step by step

During the GRE preparation process, learn how to simplify each question. Some problems might seem daunting, but they can be broken into smaller steps that you can solve one-by-one. Trying to solve the whole problem at once can lead test takers to answer the wrong question. The more you break down the problem, the easier it will become. Don’t worry–you’ll actually save time by (re-)reading the questions.

Tip 5: Scratch paper is a mustAlthough scratch paper may seem unnecessary for quant problems, it can help you keep track of calculations and clarify your thought process. It might take a little extra time, but ultimately, avoidable mistakes are even more time-consuming.

Tip 6: Plug in the answer choices 

Another way to save time with alternative solution paths is to start by reading all of the answer choices and plugging them into the problem. If you don’t know which answer choices to start with, start from the middle.

Bonus tip

The most important tip of all is practice, practice, and practice! There are many different ways to prepare: memorizing rules and formulas, watching GRE problem-solving videos (don’t forget to check out our YouTube channel), and enrolling in professional GRE courses.

 

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GRE Tutors
Posted on
01
Mar 2021

5 Excellent GRE Tutors Near You!

By: Apex GMAT
Contributor: Svetozara Saykova
Date: March 1, 2021

Do you feel like you dream big? Considering that you’ll be taking the GRE that seems about right. Guiding and supporting ambitious individuals, like you, from all around the globe is what Apex instructors take great pride in. Here at Apex GRE, we operate globally to ensure an outstanding tutoring experience, whatever your schedule or work situation. Evenings, weekends, night-shift, polar mining camp, three-week missile silo assignment – whatever your situation, we have you covered (all of those are real places we’ve helped clients, by the way).

Our distinguished top 1%  tutors are based all around the world, covering every time zone, delivering our signature GRE mentorship at those times most convenient for you. Here are a few of our excellent GRE tutors:

Mike Diamond

Mike Diamond - Apex Director of CurriculumMike Diamond is the Head of Instruction and Director of Curriculum Development. He has a rich and diverse background – politics, investment and instruction, prior to specializing in GRE, GMAT and EA tutoring. Mike has strong and in-depth expertise in mathematical modeling specializing in non-linear mathematics, stochastic calculus, and statistical analysis. Currently based in Switzerland, Mike is dedicated to delivering a premium tutoring experience. He values learning and is committed to helping students maximize their potential through personalized guidance.

Mike has scored in the top percentile for the GRE. With over 20 years of experience in test preparation, he has mentored hundreds of clients to 320+ GRE scores in each respective section.

Marvin Barron

Marvin Barron - Apex GMAT and EA Tutor

Marvin has 15+ years of experience in the business sphere. In addition to his in-depth expertise, Marvin is passionate about providing ambitious individuals with advice and guidance on their journey to success. Marvin’s tutoring approach is exceptionally personalized and this makes him an invaluable member of the Apex team. He currently lives and works in  Philadelphia. He is available for clients across the US from New York to California, London, Continental Europe, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Middle East. Making each student feel comfortable and building their confidence is Marvin’s superpower, which is the key to a marvelous GRE, GMAT, and EA experience.

 

Jaymes Kine 

Jaymes Kine - Apex GMAT Tutor

Jaymes has a rich background in teaching and his students have been from various nationalities. He has lived and worked in plenty of countries and his latest place of residence is the Middle East. He is available for clients in Europe, Dubai, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Australia. Jaymes believes that establishing a personal connection with each and every student leads to better learning experiences and higher GRE scores therefore he strives to establish that tutor-student relation with both privately tutored students and those who he consults in a group setting.

 Christopher Wilson 

GRE Tutors - Christopher Wilson - Apex GMAT, GRE & EA Instructor

Chris has an extensive background in education as well as project management. Over the years his mentees have been from up-and-coming corporations to undergraduates seeking to further their education. Even with such diverse clientele, Christopher manages to personalize his approach towards the particular student and he believes this helps clients successfully prepare for the test. Chris has vast experience in the test preparation industry and an in-depth of the GRE, GMAT, and EA exam in particular. Currently, based in Chicago he covers clients in the United States and Europe, Christopher is dedicated to making his consulting impactful for each and every student that he works with.  He’s also an early riser and has worked with clients on all 6 non-frozen continents.

David Chambers 

David Chambers - Apex GMAT and GRE Instructor

David joined the Apex team with nearly a decade-long experience with the GRE. He has a diverse background, which combines business and chemical engineering. David attained both of his Master’s degrees in the United Kingdom, where he is also currently based. He is the man on the ground for Apex in London and covers clients in the United Kingdom, Europe, and the United Arab Emirates. David is one of the most experienced GRE consultants on the market and his wit and straightforwardness have helped thousands of clients excel in their GRE endeavors.

 

So if you are looking for the best GRE instructors on the market, look no further. Time zones and distance are not a problem for our experienced team. Schedule a call at  +41 41 534 98 78 or +44 (0) 79 4361 2406  to speak to one of our instructors about your personalized GRE preparation journey.

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GRE Studying
Posted on
01
Mar 2021

How to GRE: Efficient Learning

By: Apex GMAT
Contributor: Ivan Minchev
Date:  March 1, 2021

Studying can be a daunting task for many, especially when there is a limited amount of time, and when the exam – like the GRE – isn’t a standard standardized test. Lack of interest (it’s ok to admit it… not everyone is as excited as we are about the GRE), stress, and exhaustion can be distractions that hinder one’s concentration and progress. There are a myriad studying techniques out there to tackle these obstacles, with some more effective than others. This is why this list of 8 studying tips is aimed to assist you in preparing for the GRE in the most efficient manner possible.

1. Avoid Last-minute Cramming

Make sure you have enough prep time before the exam: our tutors recommend spending about 90-120 days on your GRE preparation from start to finish. Shorter time frames can work too, but if you can, give yourself the privilege of not having to rush.

Last-minute cramming is the most inefficient way of preparing for an exam, and can be counterproductive for the GRE, which tests your flexibility, not your knowledge. Cramming can result in added stress and anxiety, which can further detract from your performance. Moreover, the GRE doesn’t lend itself to cramming, meaning that you’ll need to dedicate some time to get used to its format, the types of questions, and most importantly the skills required to tackle the test to achieve a successful outcome.

2. Designate A “Study Spot”

Find a place where you feel relaxed, but alert – cozy but serious, without the presence of any stress-inducing or distracting factors. Be sure to keep your spot clean and tidy, and only use it for studying or similar mental work. The more you become accustomed to studying in your spot the easier it will be to transition into ‘study’ mode and you’ll be able to get the optimal yield of your GRE prep time.

3. Listen To Music (Optional)

Some people don’t fancy studying in silence, while others do. In fact, many people find it harder to concentrate due to the lack of background noise. The solution is simple – music. Play some calm background music to go with the study session. The genre depends solely on one’s musical tastes but typically jazz, lo-fi hip-hop, and classical music are go-to’s. Try to focus on instrumental music and avoid anything distracting.

Keep in mind that on the GRE itself no music is permitted, so your use of music is only to get into a flow state for studying. This means that on the GRE you’ll most certainly have to contend with annoying noises that you’d typically not notice. Especially when the testing room is silent and crowded, even the smallest of noises can become irritating. To counter this, also try studying in places that mimic the test environment in this negative sense. Total silence on test day is not a realistic expectation.

4. Don’t Forget To Rest

Taking a break is an essential component of progress. When somebody works out, they don’t train for 3 hours straight without any rest. Build a routine. Determine the best and most productive time of the day to study and take regular breaks to let your brain rest. For most people mid-morning and mid-evening are peak times for productivity in this regard. When preparing for the GRE try to spend 45 minutes to 1 hour and 15-minute units.

good night’s sleep is also crucial for a sharp mind, especially with mentally exhausting tasks such as the GRE. However tempting it might be to stay up late at night, not getting enough sleep will lower a person’s ability to concentrate and will greatly hinder your brain’s functionality when the time to study comes around. In fact, sleep has been shown in many scientific studies to be essential for long term retention of information and new ways of doing things, meaning that a good night’s sleep can actually be more valuable than a few more hours of studying.

5. Maintain A Healthy Diet

Food has an enormous impact on energy levels and focus; two things essential for success on the GRE. Keep your brain fueled by snacking on healthy and nutritious food.

Ideally, snacks should be slow energy release foods, such as nuts, some fruits like blueberries, green vegetables (avocados, broccoli, spinach, celery), yogurt, and even high protein foods like fish and eggs.

Avoid junk food, especially things that will cause fluctuations in your blood sugar. Also watch out for highly processed products (chocolate, cookies, doughnuts, and even fruit juice). Such food might give your body an energy surge for a while, but a crash will follow soon after.

6. Hydrate 

Just as eating the right way is of vital importance, staying hydrated is equally essential. Around 60% of the human body is water, with the brain being composed of almost 73% water. While this isn’t a scientific argument, numerous studies point out that in order to retain a higher level of focus and cognition, the brain, and the human connected to it, needs to be well hydrated. Make sure to drink enough water during study sessions and exam day. On test day, be sure to be hydrated, but don’t get stuck having to “go” in the middle of the test. There is nothing as distracting and hindering performance as being under pressure.

7. Try To Explain New Concepts Out Loud And In A Clear Way

As soon as a new strategy, concept, or technique is learned you should try to explain it out loud as if trying to teach it to someone else. Better yet, find someone to teach! And this doesn’t only apply to GRE prep but to efficient learning in general. This is a great way to make sure that it is thoroughly understood and can be successfully implemented. It also forces you to develop a vocabulary so that you can speak to yourself about a challenging problem in a productive way. Try doing this multiple times until you are able to explain it so effortlessly that another person can grasp it without much trouble. This is easier said than done but will accelerate your preparation immensely, even if imperfectly implemented.

8. Learn From Your Mistakes

Go over past GRE practice tests and redo them to see if there are still problematic sections that need extra focus. Keep track of past and current scores to measure progress more comfortably, and maintain an error log to track the types of problems that challenge you most frequently, as well as those that you understand but tend to sink a lot of time into due to inefficient solution paths.

Conclusion

Well, there you have it: 8 great techniques to enhance your study time. This isn’t a comprehensive list, though. Always actively try out new tactics to find what works best for you. At the end of the day, everybody has a unique way of learning, and your strategies should reflect your unique approach. If you have difficulty figuring out what works best for you and are in need of some guidance on your GRE prep journey you can schedule a complimentary call here

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GMAT vs GRE
Posted on
27
Feb 2021

GMAT vs GRE – The Most Competitive Jobs On The Market

By: Apex GMAT
Date: February 27, 2021

If you’re on the verge of pursuing a professional career in business administration, finance, marketing, marketing management, accounting, or law, etc. then taking the GMAT or GRE will be a detour along the way to the top. The type of exam you choose matters. There’s a positive correlation between test scores and future earnings; with higher test scores, you may qualify for a more competitive program, and ultimately, a more lucrative career. This article describes applications of the GMAT and the GRE in today’s labor market, as well as their similarities and differences, to help you determine which test is right for you.

GMAT vs GRE | Admissions Differences

By far the most important factor to consider is which exam your desired institution accepts and prefers.

Traditionally, the GMAT is the more common option when it comes to pursuing an MBA or a similar program at a business school. The test is specifically designed to evaluate skills that help MBA admission committees determine not only industry knowledge but also critical traits like risk and time management, problem-solving under pressure, and adaptability, all of which are essential for a successful business career.

The GRE’s most distinguishing feature is its suitability for a wider variety of graduate school programs in fields such as business, education, engineering, humanities and arts, life sciences, physical sciences, and social sciences. If you’re targeting a non-MBA graduate discipline, pursuing a dual-degree, or you’re still unsure, then taking the GRE may allow you to kill two birds with one stone. It’s also worth noting that about 90% of MBA programs also accept GRE scores.

To determine which exam will make you the most competitive, ask the institution’s admissions counselors if they prefer the GMAT over the GRE. Despite many business schools’ claims that they don’t have a preference, around 90% of applicants decide to apply with a GMAT score. This discrepancy might be the result of test takers’ desire to show admissions committees that they have a clear understanding of their graduate program goals and career aspirations. If you aren’t sure which type of graduate program you’re interested in, then the GRE might be the better option. However, if you want to make sure you will be as competitive as possible for an MBA program, then pick the GMAT. In both cases, ranking among the top performers requires rigorous test preparation.

GMAT vs GRE | Structure, Timing, Scoring, Costs

gmat vs gre

GMAT vs GRE | Job Prospects

Also, consider each exam’s structure to determine which you’re more likely to perform well on.  GMAT prep will involve more focus on the quantitative section, which is more challenging than the GRE’s. MBA committees agree that an applicant’s performance in the quantitative section is one of the strongest indicators for a successful career. Conversely, with GRE prep, there is a strong focus on sentence equivalence and text completion sections which require a skilled command of highly sophisticated vocabulary. This may be particularly challenging to non-native English speakers.

The choice between the GMAT and the GRE may affect long-term career earnings beginning at the graduate level. Applicants with strong GMAT scores are more likely to receive MBA scholarships, which are usually not available for GRE applicants. Some companies even finance GMAT tutoring and exam fees for their employees or interns as an investment that will yield long-term results. When it comes down to actual labor market opportunities, however, the GMAT has an even stronger influence. Many firms, especially in consulting and finance, explicitly require a high GMAT score upon recruitment.

Lifetime Earnings Difference

Moreover, there is a high correlation between GMAT score and post-MBA salary. Over the course of 12 years working with applicants to the top 10 MBA programs, we at Apex have been able to track their progress from pre-GMAT to their post MBA careers. With data gathered from admission consultants who work with elite programs, as well as financial data from clients who have completed their MBAs, we conducted an internal analysis of the relationship between the exam score and post MBA financial gains. After correcting for other factors, our study suggested that each ten point increment in one’s GMAT score equates to $80,000 – $90,000 (NPV) of extra lifetime earnings.

An investment in GMAT preparation can result in a successful high-paying professional career in the most competitive fields that draw MBA graduates:

  • Finance – Financial Analysts, Financial Advisors, Investment Bankers, Investment Fund Executives
  • Management – Marketing Managers, Business Operation Managers, IS Managers
  • Business Consulting – Management Analysts, Marketing Managers, Business Operations Consultants, Information Technology Directors, Operation Research Analysts and all C-level positions

If you excel at test-taking and exam preparation, your GMAT or GRE journey can also lead you to secure a job as a GMAT instructor or GRE instructor. The concept of private, one-on-one GMAT or GRE prep that Apex’s GMAT tutors offer is built around a customized GRE curriculum and  GMAT curriculum. The goal of this approach is to work with both native and non-native English speakers to build cognitive skills that can be applied in and adapted to diverse working environments, resulting in career success.

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