What is GRE?

The full form of GRE is Graduate Record Examinations. It is a standardised test conducted by ETS (Educational Testing Services). ETS GRE scores are accepted by most of the top graduate level schools for Masters level programs (like the popular Master of Science degree – MS in USA).

It’s gone through a lot of changes over the years. In its newest avatar, it is called the GRE revised General Test.

GRE Exam Eligibility

The only eligibility requirement for GRE is the document required to prove your identity. In India, you’ll need a valid passport. You’ll have to get your original passport (not photocopies) which clearly shows your full name, photograph and signature.

No other documentation (like birth certificate, international driving license etc) can be used as an alternate identity proof. They are very strict about this.

Apart from this eligibility requirement, ETS does not set any age, qualification, timing related pre-requisites. However, there will be a range of eligibility criteria set by universities that accept GRE scores. For each of their programs, they may have minimum age, experience and qualification related filters.

GRE Pattern

The GRE is a generalised test that isn’t related to any particular discipline or field. It has been designing to evaluate skills that you’ve already picked up over the years. This allows a wide range of universities to use it to benchmark applicants from diverse backgrounds applying to a big mix of degrees.

If you were to look at the overall GRE exam pattern, it has 3 sections: Analytical Writing, Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning.

Analytical Writing

This section tests you ability to analyse facts, dissect arguments, judge the presented evidence and put forth your views in the most convincing and structured manner.

Verbal Reasoning

This section checks your capacity to understand the content author’s perspectives and intentions, prioritise the points made, and connect the dots across various ideas presented, even if they may not necessarily be documented in a coherent manner.

Quantitative Reasoning

This is where you comfort level with numbers and quantitative data is tested. You’ll have to understand the problem and use models and mathematical formulas (from geometry, algebra, arithmentic) to solve them. The good news is that you will have access to a calculator. So no complex mental arithmetic to be done.