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Rediff.com  » Getahead » FAQs and facts on the revised GRE general test 2011

FAQs and facts on the revised GRE general test 2011

April 06, 2011 17:33 IST

Do you want to appear for the revised GRE general test this year? Here are some faqs, facts, and tips that you should think about before you get cracking.

1. How do you register?

To register for the revised GRE general test go to http://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/register/ The test will launch on August 1, and Indian students are encouraged to learn more about it. Make sure you register early and get your preferred date and location for the test.

2. Should you take the revised GRE general test or the current GRE general test?

To make a decision about this, it is important to know when you need your test score. This will help you to decide on which of the two it is that you should take.

Remember to pay close attention to your application deadline. If you need your score report before November, make sure you take the current GRE general test before August. If you don't need it till after November, you can take the revised GRE general test after August. Check the special score reporting schedule http://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/scores/get to see which option is right for you.

3. Get a 50 per cent discount on the revised GRE general test, by taking it in August or September 2011 itself.

ETS is offering a limited-time 50% discount to all students who take the GRE revised general test between August 1 and September 30, 2011. Scores will be sent to you by mid-November. Seats will fill up quickly during the special 50 per cent discount period, so it is advised that you register for the GRE revised general test soon.

4. What is different about the revised GRE general test?

The GRE revised general test will include new types of questions and new design features, making it more user-friendly. Featuring advanced technology that lets test takers move back and forth, edit and change answers, skip and return to questions, all within a section, you can now have the freedom to use more of your own strategies and styles. There are also new answer formats such as highlighting a sentence in a passage, selecting multiple correct answer choices and entering numeric answers in a box, rather than having to select from a list.

5. There is also a difference in the test questions.

The verbal and quantitative reasoning questions have been improvised in order to reflect more closely the thinking needed in today's demanding graduate and business school programs.
New types of questions in the verbal reasoning section better measure your ability to understand what you've read and how you apply your reasoning skills. Plus, antonyms and analogies are no longer on the test, so there aren't questions that test vocabulary out of context.
New types of questions in the quantitative reasoning section puts more emphasis on data interpretation and real-life scenarios. You'll also have an on-screen calculator.

6. The verbal reasoning and quantitative reasoning sections of the GRE revised general test will now be scored on a scale of 130–170.

The new score scale will make it easier for schools to compare your scores with the scores of other candidates. On the current GRE General Test, the verbal reasoning and quantitative reasoning sections have a score scale of 200-800, reported in a 10-point increment. On the GRE revised general test, coming this August, scores for the verbal reasoning and quantitative reasoning sections will be reported on a new 130–170 score scale, in 1-point increments. The new score scale makes small differences in scoring look like small differences, while bigger differences will continue to stand out. The analytical writing section score scale will remain the same.

7. Students will have access to free GRE revised general test preparation products from ETS, which will be an experience as close to the real test experience as possible.

You can get the preparation material from the GRE website (http://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/prepare/) which includes sample questions for verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning and analytical writing; as well as the free PowerPrep II Software that gives students a simulated test-taking experience. The software provides a timed test that demonstrates the new design features.

8. Students can use Facebook or TaketheGRE.com website to get more information.

The GRE page on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/imtakingthegretest) gives those considering graduate or business school a greater opportunity to share advice, cheer prospective test takers, and get clear information about the GRE revised general test. The GRE program also recently introduced a new TaketheGRE.com website which provides information about the GRE general test and the GRE revised general test. It also includes access to free, official GRE test preparation software and material. Prospective test takers can sign up for free, customisable alerts and reminders about registration, test preparation, and more on the website.

9. The score will be valid for both graduate school as well as business school programs.

Today, more than 450 MBA programs (http://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/about/mba/programs/) around the world also accept GRE general test scores for admission.

10. The revised test takes 3 hours and 45 minutes to complete.

The computer-based GRE revised general test will last about 3 hours 45 minutes, and consists of separately timed sections:

Verbal Reasoning
Two 30-minute sections, approximately 20 questions each
Quantitative Reasoning Two 35-minute sections, approximately 20 questions
Analytical Writing One section, two separately timed 30-minute tasks, "Analyze an Issue" and "Analyze an Argument"

The author, Dawn S. Piacentino is the Director of Communications and Services for the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) Program at the Educational Testing Service (ETS). She manages GRE communications and outreach activities, and has oversight responsibility for GRE institutional and student services, including the GRE test preparation products.

Dawn S. Piacentino