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How to Prepare for the GRE


The Graduate Record Exam evokes fear in the hearts of most graduate students. The best way to overcome your fear is to dive in and prepare well. Follow these steps to taking the GRE in stride -- and visit the articles and resources linked to learn more about how to prepare for the Graduate Record Exam.
Difficulty: Average
Time Required: Three to Six Months (Optional)

Here's How:

  1. Understand the Test
    Step one is to understand what you're getting into. Get acquainted with the GRE and begin preparing with this thorough overview of the Graduate Record Exam. Most students are overwhelmed with questions about the exam. Seek answers to basic questions about the GRE.. The newest GRE section, the Analytical Writing section, is the source of much confusion among applications. Knowledge is power. This article on the Analytical Writing will help you get the info you need to excel.
  2. Practice
    Get a handle on the test by practicing with sample test questions and exams. Learn about your weaknesses and devise strategies to overcome them.
  3. Consider a review course
    GRE review courses can aid your preparation and help you overcome gaps in your competence.
  4. Strategize
    Learn strategies for tackling the GRE. The Vebal Section is particularly challenging, so spend time learning strategies for the Verbal Section.
  5. Make Time to Relax
    An essential part of test prep is to take care of your own physical and mental health. Learn how to reduce stress and relax.


  1. Begin preparing several months ahead of time to give yourself the opportunity to prepare well.
  2. Take the GRE well before graduate admissions applications are due to ensure that you have time to take it a second time if needed.
  3. Compile your materials for the exam (paperwork, photo id, directions) the night before to minimize rushing around the morning of the exam.
  4. Arrive to the test site early to reduce anxiety and get settled.

What You Need

  • Access to Practice Materials
  • Time
  • Patience
  • Motivation and Endurance

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