Looking For A GRE Study Guide
The GRE (Graduate Record Exam) is a test that many universities use to evaluate prospective graduate students. Some schools give it a very high weight when making admissions decisions. Thus, the score that a student receives can have a big effect on their future life. Because of this, many people who are planning to take the GRE spend some time looking for a GRE study guide.
There are also a number of optional Subject Tests that cover knowledge in eight specific subject areas. These are optional, though admission to some specific graduate programs may require one or more of them. This article does not address preparation for the Subject Tests.
The GRE is based on very general measures of verbal and numerical logic, practical analysis, and analytical writing. ETS argues that because of this, it is not useful to prep or coach individuals in preparation for the test. Some offer the counter argument that the test format is so rigid that people can benefit from practice tests in the same format.
People who are registered for the GRE can access the PowerPrep preparation software. This contains review material and practice questions. The practice questions are former GRE questions that have been retired. It can predict what the user's actual GRE score may be.
Study guides for the GRE are available, some of them for no charge. They take a number of different approaches to preparation for the GRE. Some of them offer practice questions or entire tests. Others review the basic knowledge that is tested by the GRE and provide suggestions for how to analyze and solve GRE questions. Some provide practical advice on approaches for writing the essays for the analytical writing section.
Some companies provide GRE classes. The instructor will cover some of the same material as is found in the study guides, but some will also be proprietary. There will be opportunities for class discussion and for questions to be answered. Many of them will also provide computerized practice tests in an environment very similar to that of the actual GRE.
Those who are planning to take the GRE will have to make their own decisions on how much effort to put into preparation. As said above, ETS believes that preparation is not really possible, because the GRE is testing knowledge and talents that are developed over the long haul. Not everyone agrees with this position.