The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is a standardized test used for admissions to graduate programs and business schools in the United States and several other countries like Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, China, Japan, South Korea, and India.
The GRE is an important part of the graduate school application process, however, it is not the only factor and programs and schools may also consider other materials such as transcripts, recommendation letters, and personal statements.
You may be required to take the GRE exam for graduate school admission, business school admission, career advancement, and scholarship applications. The GRE is a computer-based exam and you need to have a certain level of proficiency to be able to navigate your answers on the system.
Format of the GRE Exam
The GRE consists of three sections: a) Verbal Reasoning, b) Quantitative Reasoning, and c) Analytical Writing.
Verbal Reasoning measures your ability to analyze and evaluate written material. It will contain questions where you will be required to recognize relationships between words and concepts. The section consists of two 20-question sections, and one 20-question experimental section. You will have 30 minutes to complete each section.
The Quantitative Reasoning assesses your ability to understand and analyze quantitative information as well as to solve problems using mathematical concepts. Like the previous one, this section also contains two 20-question sections and one 20-question experimental section. You will be allotted 35 minutes to solve each section.
The Analytical Writing section measures your ability to articulate complex ideas clearly and effectively. You will be required to write 2 essays — “Analyze an Issue” and “Analyze an Argument” essay. You will have 30 minutes to complete each essay.
The entire test takes 3 hours and 45 minutes to complete with a 10-minute break in between. The verbal and quantitative sections are scored on a scale of 130-170, while the Analytical Writing section is scored on a scale of 0 to 6.
Eligibility and Requirements for GRE
There are no specific requirements for taking the GRE, however, the test-takers either hold a bachelor’s degree, or are on the verge of completing their bachelor’s program.
While there are no specific prerequisites for taking the GRE, it is important to prepare well for the exam to score high on the testing scale. You can find study materials like practice tests, study guides, and online courses to help you prepare for the test.
When Can You Take the GRE Exam?
You can take the GRE year-round at designated testing centers located throughout the world. It is important to register early to secure a spot on your preferred test date.
The cost of the GRE varies depending on your location and testing center. In the United States, the cost of the exam is $205, but additional costs may be applicable in case of rescheduling and late registration.
The GRE Fee Reduction Program is available for anyone who can demonstrate their financial need. They get a waiver of 50% on the exam fee, as well as free score reporting to up to four graduate programs.
It is important to check for the current fees at the time of the registration process.
The GRE is administered at hundreds of test centers around the world. You can search for one near you and for available test dates on the ETS (Educational Testing Service) website, the body that administers the GRE exam.
How to Register for GRE?
You can register for the GRE online, by phone, or by mail. Here’s how to —
- Create an account in your name on the Educational Testing Service (ETS) website by clicking on ‘My GRE Account.’ Provide them with your basic personal information like your name, address, date of birth, email, etc.
- Next, select your preferred test date and location. The earlier you register the more options you have to select your preferred test date.
- Fill out the registration form with your personal and academic information. You will also be asked to select up to four graduate programs or business schools that will receive your scores for free (at no additional cost).
- The registration fee will vary with your location. Pay the fee using a credit or debit card.
- Before submitting the form, review it for any corrections. Once submitted, you will receive a confirmation email with your test date, location, and time.
Similar process has to be followed if you choose an offline mode of registration (phone/mail).
Who to Contact for GRE Registration?
The Educational Testing Service (ETS) is the body that organizes the GRE exam. You can contact the ETS directly for registration. We list you different ways to contact the ETS.
Online: The online process of registration for the GRE is fairly easy and has been described to you in the above section. You need to have an ETS account to register online for the exam.
Phone: You can call ETS at 1-800-473-2255 or 1-866-473-4373 to register for GRE by phone. The service is available from Monday to Friday, 8 am to 8 pm. If you have a query or complaint, you can write to GRE-Info@ets.org. Note that if you are from India, South Korea or other locations, there is a regional customer support you can call for help. The numbers are published on the ETS website.
Mail: You can also register by post. Simply download the registration form from the ETS website, fill it up with relevant details, and send it by post to the address mentioned in the form along with a money order or check.
At the time of registration, you will need to provide a valid, government-issued photo ID, and also carry this to the test center on the day of the exam. This is for identification purposes to check that there is no mismatch between the name used during registration and the one used on the ID.
How to Check GRE Scores?
You will need to wait at least 10-15 days after your exam date for your GRE scores to be released.
Once available, you can check your scores online by logging into your ETS account with your login credentials (username and password). Click on ‘View Scores’ on your dashboard to access your GRE scores (for individual section and grand total). If you have attempted the GRE multiple times, select the test date you want to view scores for. You will be able to see the percentile rank for each score.
You can receive your scores by phone or mail. To receive your scores by phone, call the GRE Program at 1-888-473-7786 (toll-free in the United States). To receive your scores by mail, you can request a paper copy to be mailed to you for a fee.