I gave my GRE on 8th feb and got a score of 1410.
I have reviewed a lot of posts on this blog and others, they are definitely very helpful so I would like to add to that with my experience.
I am dividing this post into following parts :
- ATTITUDE (Most important)
- STUDY MATERIAL
- MENTAL COMPOSURE
GRE Prep Attitude
My friends attitude is the most important driving force for your success not just for GRE but for everything you need in your life, so begin with having a positive functional attitude.
Keep an active mind to put that extra rigor in your hard work, trust me you would be a happy person when you would go to sleep everyday.
HOW TO BUILD ONE ?
You can try reading motivational books by great authors or watch videos on youtube for the same but what I feel is fabricating a steel mindframe you need to put up a fight inside yourself.
Tell yourself everything you want in your life everyday, put up posters in your own handwriting in your room never accept those days when you feel “ok, I ll take a break this day” never let down your own self for it is you who will need to give in the same effort no one else.
Ok so now you have the right mental acuity. [ Talent vs Attitude – Must Watch]
GRE Books and Study Materials
Now you will be needing the RIGHT TOOLS set from a specious grey market.
Begin with Barrons (this book has a lot of might). You may be tempted by various online sites claiming big things having fake articles by people who claim to have scored 1580 or 60s.
Take up a pencil and keep on marking it on every important point till its so black that you cannot even view it anymore for you wouldn’t be needing it by now.
Carry a separate notes book for verbal and Quant and write whatever you feel is difficult and you need to revise, it will come really handy later on.
For GRE VOCABULARY the most dreaded part
Start with kaplan 2500 then barrons 3500 and lastly read Nova high frequency.
Now you might think that there are many common words, yes there is certainly but many words are specific to all these three.
To study this you will have to dig in hard, have some allotted time for it in the morning. Keep flashcards handy and always keep them with you, revising them anywhere you get time.
- How to use Flash cads to Improve GRE Vocabulary
- 6 Ways to Memorize Barrons GRE Words
- Flash Cards for GRE Words
There are sites who offer audio help for memorising the words I found it very helpful ( I changed my music list to word list in my phone)
You would require a month to be well versed with all the words and yes mnemonic do help but can only be learned for very few whom you found very difficult to learn.
Plus keep a check on easy sounding words with minute differences in their charge, they are more difficult then complex words.
After lumbering through the words NOW go for word groups and if necessary word roots, this will add final touches to your prep.
THE NEXT BEST THING IS GRE BIG BOOK, get it online and try and solve 2-3 papers everyday in the last 2 weeks.
I have seen a korean big book for quant(noy sure of the name) I found some of its questions very helpful in building up the logic required for discerning quant section.
But barrons questions level very aptly matches with the GRE, so rely on that primarily and then go for kaplan or the korean big book*
Prepare notes for every single quant question type as to our advantage they are limited.
Overall no. of quest that might pose a prob :
RC 3 to 4 in verbal with second one toughest and trust me longest most times, have some time in the end as the fourth one might come around in the end.
DI for quant are easy dont worry about them too much just be very alert to not make any silly mistake.
For analytical writing consider NOVAS I found them very good. GO through sample essays many sites provide them meaning many of topics from the pool are already covered.
NOW for topics that need to be done better and are not provided clearly
- I did it from CAT prep material of a friend.
- Put special efforts for sentence completion.
Lastly few additional aids
- READ through Peterson’s very helpful in guiding about how to move about in exam. ( author belongs to UCLA selection committee if I am correct )
- DOWNLOAD a stopwatch for your computer to time yourself which is very important.
- WATCH XNOTE STOPWATCH- from download-dot-com very helpful
- Use thesaurus-dot-com again very helpful they have an option for flashcards and people have uploaded GRE content also.
- Use pnemonic dictionary-dot-com for tough words. ( I know the exam is changing in aug but it can always help)
Focus on your prep not anywhere else, don’t get bogged down for you can judge yourself the best.
REMEMBER : “WE WILL REACH THERE BE IT SCHOLARSHIP OR HARDSHIP” – self
Keep good motivational songs for those breaks you take in between.
Sanjeev, I am a Dental Intern , going to UCLA for externship( not related to GRE). Took 2 months of prep.
RAW GRE SCORE :
- Quant : 770
- Verbal : 640
Analytical score awaited, will post when I get it. Go for the kill my friends, realise your dreams and remember humans by very nature are resilient.
BEST OF LUCK