Revised Test Pattern of GRE


Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) is conducted for admission to graduate and business schools in U.S or other English speaking countries. The exam which is conducted in paper based and computer based formats. There have been quite a few revisions in test structure and pattern from 2011 onwards. According to the current pattern, there are questions on verbal ability, quantitative reasoning and analytical writing. In analytical writing, there will be questions related to an issue or argument where as in quantitative reasoning there will be questions on numerical ability, data interpretation, etc. Verbal reasoning includes questions on reading comprehension, text completion and sentence equivalence.

Test Structure for GRE

GRE is conducted in paper based and computer based test formats. Questions for the test will be asked from the following subjects.

  • Verbal Reasoning
  • Quantitative Reasoning
  • Analytical Writing

All these subjects contain two separate sections to make a total of 6 sections for the test. Exam pattern for both paper based and computer based test are same. But there is a slight difference in the time duration. Time allotted for the completion of paper based test is 3 hour 30 minutes and that for computer based test is 3 hour 45 minutes. Candidates can have 10 minutes break following the third section in case of computer based test and after second section in case of paper based test. Time allotted for each section is as follows.

For Computer Based Test

  • Analytical Writing – 60 minutes
  • Verbal Reasoning – 60 minutes
  • Quantitative Reasoning – 70 minutes

For Paper Based Test

  • Analytical Writing – 60 minutes
  • Verbal Reasoning – 70 minutes
  • Quantitative Reasoning – 80 minutes

Verbal Reasoning

The verbal reasoning section includes questions to measure one’s ability to analyze and to draw conclusions out of the given data. There will be questions to evaluate and understand relationship between words and concepts. Questions for the section are categorized under three groups.

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Text Completion
  • Sentence Equivalence

Quantitative Reasoning

Quantitative Reasoning section is intended to measure candidate’s ability to interpret and analyze quantitative information. The section comprises of questions on comparison, numerical ability, data interpretation and so on.  Students can expect questions from topics like

  • Algebra
  • Area
  • Coordinate geometry
  • Data analysis
  • Fractions & decimals
  • Percentages
  • Quadratic equations
  • Ratio & proportion
  • Volume

Analytical Writing

Analytical writing includes questions to measure the logical and writing skills of the candidate. Analytical ability of the candidate is measured with the help of issue and argument related questions. There will be two questions for this section and answers must be quoted in short essay formats.



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