10 Tips for GRE Success

1) The first 10 questions are the most important! According to Neill Seltzer, the national GRE content director of the Princeton Review, the computerized versions of the test begins by asking questions of average difficulty. If the answers are correct, the computer then progressively generates more difficult questions. Thus, answering the first 10 questions correctly will place you in a higher scoring bracket.
2) Work with a friend. Studying and practicing with a friend will make the process more enjoyable, as well as less stressful. Collaborative preparation can also give you an opportunity to reconcile misconceptions and ask questions.
3) Start studying early. Do not wait until a month before the GRE to start preparing. It is really best to begin six months to two years before the exam. Distributed practice is the best method of studying!
4) The clock is your friend; do not be scared of it. Do not rush through the test, it is better to answer a few questions correctly than simply rush through and answer a lot incorrectly. The answers at the beginning of the test are weighted more heavily than the ones at the end. Seltzer states, “When you sit down to take the test, you’re nervous. You want to do well. There is a clock in front of you that is ticking away, and the first thing that everyone does is go too fast. People are worried that they are not going to have time to get to the end of the test and answer every single question. What they don’t realize is that it doesn’t matter what happens on the tail end of the test.”
5) Revisit concepts you studied in high school. Don’t worry if you look over the GRE preparation tests or books and find that you need to refresh yourself on concepts you studied in high school: it is perfectly normal! Many GRE tutors encourage their students to acquire books such as: Algebra for Dummies or Geometry for Dummies.
6) Vocabulary, Vocabulary, Vocabulary. It is imperative to study your dictionary, GRE word lists, and practice new words on a daily basis. The GRE is heavily weighted on the verbal section and it is extremely important to be well read and have an excellent vocabulary. Plan to spend your undergraduate career learning at least one new word every day!
7) Take a GRE preparation course if you can afford it!
8) Take many, many, many practice tests. There are many online versions of the practice tests are free.
9) If you don’t get the score you want the first time, try again!
10) Take a really difficult English course. The two essays in the analytic section are the first portion of the test and take up more than one third of the time test takers are allowed. Enrolling in difficult English courses throughout your undergraduate work will prepare you to excel!
References
Burnsed, B. (2010, May). Test Prep: 8 Tips for GRE success. U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved from
http://www.usnews.com/education/articles/2010/05/14/test-prep-8-tips-for-gre-success

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