The GRE is an important test for individuals who will be applying to graduate school. Learn about GRE test dates and when you should take the GRE below.
We will review GRE testing dates, when you should register, how to register, and more.
Summary: Find a GRE date that works for you. If you want to begin studying, consider using a best GRE prep course.
GRE Test Dates
The exact test dates available are going to depend on what type of GRE exam you’re going to take. There are two different ways of taking the GRE:
- Online via testing centers
- Online with an at home option
If you decide to take the GRE online at home, you will be able to take the exam 24/7. You will be able to take the exam 24 hours after you register if you want.
Read our guide on how hard the GRE is for additional information that you should know.
If you decide to take the exam via a testing center, you will need to schedule your test date.
Test availability is limited by the number of seats available on a given day. The earlier you sign up, the more choices you’ll have. There are a ton of GRE dates offered, so you should be able to find a good option.
You can sign up for either option on the official website. If you want to get some practice in before signing up, take our GRE practice test.
How Do I Register for the GRE?
If you’ve already decided to take the GRE, the next step is to register. So how do you do that?
It depends on how you will be taking the GRE. We will review the process for both options.
Online at Home Option
You will need to follow these steps to register for the GRE if you will be taking the exam online at home:
- See if you meet the equipment requirements to take the exam at home.
- Create an ETS account.
- Log in to your ETS account and register for a GRE test date. You can do so by using this link – make sure the “Test From Home” button is checked.
- You will confirm your at home test date and follow the instructions.
- You will receive a confirmation email from ETS.
Online Via Testing Center Option
You will need to follow these steps to register for the GRE if you will be taking the exam online at a testing center:
- Create an ETS account.
- Log in to your ETS account and register for a GRE test date. You can do so by using this link to find a testing center.
- Enter in your criteria like location and how far away you are willing to travel.
- View the different GRE exam dates and find one that works for you.
- Select your desired date.
- You will be taken to a final screen to confirm – you will need to request any accommodations on this page if needed.
- Receive a confirmation email.
When Should I Register for the GRE?
When it comes to registration, the rule of thumb is that you can’t register for the GRE too early. The earlier you register, the more likely you are to find test availability on the day you want.
You can register up to a year in advance, so if you’ve got your heart set on a particular graduate program, register right away.
On the other hand, maybe you’re not sure about your career or academic direction. Perhaps you’re waiting to see if a particular job offer shakes out, and graduate school is your backup option.
If that is the case, no worries. If you opt to take the exam online at home, you can take the exam within 24 hours of registering if you want.
When Should I Take the GRE?
When you should take the GRE is entirely up to you. There are a ton of GRE dates offered, so that should not be an issue.
The test results are good for up to five years, so it’s tough to take it too early. But under most circumstances, you’re probably taking it in the last year of your undergraduate education.
The biggest factor is when your grad school application is due. This can be different depending on the school, and sometimes even on the program.
Do your research, and make sure your exam results will get to the school before the application deadline. Remember that even with the online test, it takes up to 15 days for the school to receive your results.
It is best to not rush into a GRE test date. You will need time to study and prepare. You can use GRE prep courses to prepare and make sure you are ready.
In addition, if you do poorly, you may want to re-take the test, which requires a wait of 21 days. This can put you in a bind. Look at your school’s application deadline, and plan accordingly.
If you’re planning to enter grad school in the spring, one option is to give yourself until the end of the year, so you’ll have as much time as possible to prepare.
That said, you might want to take the GRE in fall instead of winter. This way, you’ll have plenty of time to retake the test if you’re not happy with your score.
How Much Does the GRE Cost?
The cost for the standard administration of the GRE general test is $220 for most areas. The standard cost for the GRE subject tests are $150 worldwide.
Additional fees are required for items such as:
- Late registration
- Standby testing
- Changing your test center or changing your subject test
These additional fees are typically between $25 and $50. Full details on GRE test fees are available on the ETS website.
GRE Testing Dates FAQs
Are there set test dates for the GRE?
If you are taking the exam online at a testing center, you will be a little more limited on availability, but there are still a ton of testing dates and time available – there should not be any issues with not being able to find a GRE exam date.