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  • GRE

    Anyone here take it? I'm looking for insight on good study materials, a study schedule to adhere to or what experiences people had. What say the Wheat?

  • #2
    Re: GRE

    Yes, I've taken it. The general consensus is that these two study books are the best 1-2 punch you can get:

    [img width=457 height=600][/img]

    Princeton's book is very good for strategies and getting a general feel for the test. Barrows is more useful in preparing for the vocab portions of the exam. I haven't really heard good things about Kaplan's materials. I only used Princeton and I wasn't as disciplined about studying as I should've been, but I was still able to come up with a fairly respectable score.

    For your study schedule, I'd try to study anywhere from 30 min to 2 hours a day, depending on how much time you have until you take the exam. Cramming the night or two nights before won't help you at all. Even a half-hearted regiment of daily preparation will be more effective than a last-minute cram.

    As for the test itself, it's basically you at a computer for hours at a time. It wasn't as much of a pain in the ass as the SAT or ACT, IMO, but it's still a significant time commitment. You start out with the writing section first, then it kind of varies between verbal and quantitative. I kind of wish it had been the other way around since I usually feel mentally burned out after writing a lot of stuff at a very fast pace, but it is what it is.

    The really nice part about the GRE is that you get your score immediately after you're done. However, you also have to consider whether you think your score was good enough to send to your potential grad schools. If you elect to wait instead of send the scores immediately from the testing center, you will have to pay a small fee ($5ish) for each school you send the scores to if you decide to send them after you get home.

    Other than that, the usual advice: Get lots of sleep the night before, don't go in wasted, consider K-State*, etc.

    *subliminal advertising


    • #3
      Re: GRE

      Thanks. I'll have to see if I can nab those materials. It looks like they're uniformly checked out across the entire St. Paul library system. I guess everyone else has the same idea.

      I have some Barrons flash cards and an ooooold Cliffnotes looking GRE guide book (circa 2002). I'm going to try to incorporate the flash cards into a daily routine and do a practice test every weekend. I'm giving myself three months to study for it, so I can build up some vocab. I just hope I don't get burnt out by week 2.

      There's a lot of info online (probably because all of the students that took it / are taking it are more web savvy), so I'm sifting through that, trying to build a study plan.


      • #4
        Re: GRE

        Online supplemental stuff will help I'm sure. In order to avoid getting burnt out, don't try to study too much in one day. I was alright with doing about an hour or so about 4-5 days a week. Princeton's book is actually kind of interesting in the parts where it talks about how the GRE sets the format for their exam.


        • #5
          Re: GRE

          From what I've read so far, it looks like your advice is on track. Most point to Princeton as having great strategies and advice, but point to Barron's as the most comprehensive or intense. I think I'm going to focus on memorizing vocab for now, and once I get a base, I'll move on to technique.

          I made pretty good headway researching programs and study resources. I have a target of 800Q 650V 5.0W, which I think is attainable with practice. Time will tell.