Following New GRE Blog post was shared by Sandeep.
I gave my GRE exam on 25th August at Hyderabad. Before giving out my score ranges, I’d like to tell my story from the beginning.
I’ve got much to share so I’m splitting my post into parts:
I always knew from my school days that to get into US and pursue higher studies there one has to take the GRE (many of my cousins have been to US).
I vividly remember running into an article in a local newspaper somewhere in September 2009, when I was in the second year of my graduation, which had a preamble stating GRE in for major changes in August 2011
My mind was quick to calculate that this coincides with the final year of my graduation. I got curious and began to read.
The article was describing the proposed changes. “Analogies would be removed” was an immediate eye-catcher for me as I always considered them to be my weakest area in English.
I was stolid, however. Further into the article, I discovered that ETS would be giving 50% discount for those who test between August and September 2011.
“I’ll never miss this opportunity”, I said to myself.
Fast forward and now we’re in 2011. I was eagerly waiting for March 15, the day the registrations for new GRE would begin.
As soon as I came back from college that day, I booked my GRE date for 10th August, 2011 albeit I was not at all prepared for GRE at that time.
Time passed by. Almost about a month after my pre-final year exams were over, I enrolled into online classes for GRE in the mid of May.
I only enrolled but didn’t start using them. In the mean time, I bought official guide to revised GRE. Just bought it.
The online classes required me to take a diagonistic test before I could begin. As it was a “new” pattern, they did not have a diagnostic test of their own at that time and asked me to take powerprep II.
I was a bit reluctant but finally heeded. Let me confess- I used dictionary for answering about 10 questions in the Verbal section and ended up with a score range of 1170-1340.
New GRE Prep Started
Finally I started using the classes on 5th June which was also my birthday. Then throughout June, I was doing quant sessions from my lessons, 1 per day which included a test on a particular lesson at the end, This helped me a lot. This was the sole source of my preparation for Quants.
Coming to verbal, I made it a point that I read the newspaper everyday from the day my vacation began to improve my reading speed.
Although majority of the time I’d read the Telugu (my mother tongue) newspaper and then would switch on to English, I feel it definitely helped me expedite my reading.
This became a part of my mundane tasks and it is to date. It surely helped me to face RC’s with some confidence.
I started using my online verbal classes from July 4, the day my final year began. The online classes had separate sessions for text completions, sentence equivalence and Reading Comprehensions.
Each section had separate practice tests and each test had a separate word list. In short, I’d have to go through a word list first and then answer the questions which would be based only on the words in that.
Each word list had about 50 words along with their synonyms. Whatever the words I’ve learnt were from these. July neared its end and I could finish only 5 word lists meant for text completions, amounting to about 1000 words.
Then the tension began- GRE was round the corner and I was way behind in my preparation…………..
To get an experience of the kind of RC questions you may face in GRE, try answering the following (although the RC passages in GRE are never so long and never have so easy English):
1. Which of the following ideas are not expressed by the author in the passage (Select all that apply):
A. The author was keen on writing GRE ever since he was in school.
B. The author never knew what GRE was until he read the news paper article.
C. The author has many acquaintances in US.
2. Replacing “stolid” with which of the following word will most likely not change the meaning of the passage:
3.”I’ll never miss this opportunity”. By “this”, the author is referring to
A. The removal of analogies from GRE.
B. The opportunity of writing GRE before its format changes as it coincides with the final year of his studies.
C. The opportunity of writing GRE after its format changes as it coincides with the final year of his studies.
D. The discount that ETS announced for the test takers who test in the first two months after the test changes.
E. The opportunity of taking new GRE as the new test format more closely aligns with the author’s interests.
Those who want to answer the above questions may post their responses as a comment to my post. Please note that the RC questions that appear in actual GRE may not be as easy as the above are. I’d be sharing my remaining experience in my next post.