(Closed) Bees who have taken the GRE?

posted 5 years ago in College
Post # 3
9139 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

Take a practice exam and see where you need the most help.  I scored really high on reading but low on math so I focused on improving my math skills before the exam. As far as pratice guides, check out Amazon for reviews and then try to buy used copies which you can get at a discount.








Post # 4
2073 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I used the Princeton Review book.  I don’t remember it being too bad but I took it about 8 years ago so take that with a grain of salt.  Good luck!

Post # 5
9139 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

I studied for two full days but I would recommend a few hours per day over a week or two for the best results.  I spent more time studying for the LSAT and it definitely showed in my scores.

Post # 6
9691 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

I did…I don’t remember what book I used.  I just took some time out of my days to study some common vocab words.  It really just depends on what your strengths and weaknesses are and what you are taking it for.  I did pretty bad on the math section (comparatively) but since I was applying for humanities fields…the math section basically didn’t matter.

It’s good to take a practice exam and work on those areas you’re weakest.  I didn’t really need much help on reading or writing so I didn’t really do anything to prepare for those areas at all.  I just needed help in math and some vocab expansion.  So I worked on those.

I really can’t remember how much time I took.  I was working as a student and I had a lot of downtime at work I would use to study.  Maybe a an hour or two a day for 3 days a week.  I can’t even remember…2 months?  I don’t think I studied at all on the weekend.

Post # 7
757 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I used the princeton review book and the cds that came with it that had practice exams on them. It really wasn’t that big of a deal, so I would say just learn the question types and make sure that you remember high school math. I took it 4 years ago, but it really wasn’t bad.

Post # 8
470 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@QueenOfSerendip:  I actually took a month-long Kaplan GRE classroom prep course because I had been out of college about seven years and needed solid preparation. But after having done that I realized that taking a computer course with a book is just as good, as long as there is video.

If you are really short on funds, just get a Kaplan book with a CD in it. Give it a good six weeks with studying about 15 hours a week. If you are recently graduated from college, you could get by with six hours a week.

Read all of the shortcut tips in the study guide, because they really do help.

One of the most important things to learn for the test is time management per question because that clock really runs down fast.

After I took the test I met my fiance, and decided being married was more important than grad school. But it was a great back-up plan!



Post # 9
1416 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

I personally took one of those paid courses for a month or so (I can’t remember if it was Princeton of Kaplan) but that’s because I was still in college and I knew myself and knew I would NEVER study if I didn’t have to be prepared for a class. It’s not necessary though, definitely just buy a book or two, take practice tests, etc.

Post # 10
3552 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

I took it last year right before they changed it. I used one of those study books and I was fine. The one thing that did throw me a bit was all of the other tests I’ve had you write the essay section at the end, but the GRE started with it. I expected to do a bunch of multiple choice kind of settle into the test, and then write the essays, not have to sit down and pump out 2 essays first. My writing score could have been better, but since I want to go into a science field it’s not the end all be all.

Post # 11
4311 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

Get the book that has the flash cards with it, and study your vocabulary if you’re not good with it.

The math is very basic…

I studied the night before and was in the average scoring.  I had not done algebra literally in years.

You would probably want to do better if its required for the program, but mine was a combination of GRE score/GPA and like 3 other things.  So I slacked BIG TIME on GRE because my undergrade GPA was a 3.8 something.

It’s relatively challenging if you’re not proficient in algebra and vocab.  Uh there was this rice thing I did for a couple days that helped me…


Oh and you have to write little paragraphs… pretty easy, they give you the topcis.

Post # 12
490 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2015

I didn’t study at all. I did do some of the practice tests they have online though. The important thing to remember on the math part is that if it seems complicated, it isn’t. They ask some tricky looking questions but if you keep in mind that there should be a fairly simple solution it’ll help you a lot. 

I do know that they changed the format a few months after I took it so I hope I’m not giving you bad advice haha.

Post # 13
6123 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

I got some workbooks from the library.  I was going for an engineering degree so I focused on the math.  I think I went through every single one of the math sections and did all the exercises.  Took me like 2 months of studying with at least 1 hour of math problems per night to go through all of them.


Now I was out of school for 8 years at that point.  I had not had trig in 15 years.  I needed some major refreshing!


Someone once told me that if you can park a car you can take the GRE.  So I went in my first time and totally bombed it.  Then 8 years later I decided to try again and passed just fine (after all the studying I mentioned above).

Post # 14
158 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: January 2014

@QueenOfSerendip:  I used the princeton review book for a couple days before.  I would say the most important thing about studying is sticking to the time limits.  If I could change one thing about my GRE studying, I would have practiced with the time limits.  I ended up running out of time on the math and then panicked and finished too quickly on the verbal.

Post # 15
173 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

My strategy was: buy a study guide book, do a couple of the exercises for each section, read the sections for what you have trouble with, do a practise exam, and then review again what you struggled with. 

AND – read things with vocab you do not know (and look it up). Find something everyday that you enjoy but that is challenging. 

Your goal is to become quick and time efficient. So, the best way to do this is to break up the practise problems/essays you do into short quick spurts over the course of the day/week. Build confidence, don’t overwhelm yourself. Like the previous posters said, time yourself! Time management is so important. 

Finally, remember that the actual GRE is really, really long. Exercise a bit before, eat well, and BRING WATER AND SNACKS for your break times. 


Post # 16
491 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

I used a Kaplan test book and the GRE flashcards for memorizing the words. It has some good advice, especially if you are taking the computer version of the test. Good luck!

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