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Introduction: – Nowadays GRE is considered with great importance all over the world. The admission to graduate and post graduate level courses is decided through these tests. This is not only a competitive examination but also a skill test that helps to measure the competency of students. The graduate record examination creates great concern to students, because these are the milestones which decide their future. Those who can score high marks in these examinations are eligible to get admission for higher studies. Hence, it is essential for them to come up with flying colors in these tests. Students are required to start the preparation for these tests straight away after the completion of their undergraduate or graduate level courses. There are numerous GRE coaching centers which can provide adequate guidance for facing the examinations. Since the fees charged by them are unaffordable for some students, they prefer self study for the GRE tests. Internet helps such students to a great extend by providing valuable packages of learning materials. They can also rely on study guides having questions and solved problems. The contents of certain study guides are available from the internet also. If the students can utilize these facilities properly, there won’t be any difficulty in facing this competitive examination.
Self learning with study material: – Since the internet provides a lot of study materials, it is up to the students to select the best one for their self learning. Before choosing them, they must conduct a self assessment regarding their knowledge and skills. This will help them to aware their weaker sections from the curriculum and study them with utmost care and importance. They can learn the portions by going through the solved problems properly. Afterwards they may refer exercises and comprehensions and have a good practice. If students are proposing self studies, it is ideal to start the learning process about three months before the commencement of the GRE. It will be beneficial if they can learn new type questions as well as old ones. New type questions can be expected in verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning and analytical writing. The self learning students can make a combined study if possible. This will help them to learn the subjects properly and clear their doubts. Those who want to study alone can depend on suitable books and GRE study guides. Apart from this, they can buy software containing GRE kits and make use of them through their personal computer. If required they can also seek coaching from any GRE tuition center.
For conducting self study, they must have a proper knowledge about the GRE and the materials by which they can study. The methodology of the examination is to be understood beforehand and the process of learning must be arranged accordingly. Separate types of practicing are essential to take the test either on computer or on paper. The GRE websites are very helpful to students in this regard. They explain the pattern and curriculum of the examination and also about online study guides and reference sites. Students are advised to collect the latest study materials since the GRE pattern and courses are changing often. Students can purchase second hand books also if possible for learning old type comprehensions. They can increase their efficiency in taking the competitive test by practicing the questionnaires available in the study guides properly. Students can search the websites of educational testing services (ETS) for this purpose. They can also have software containing sample tests and study materials through these websites. The total study time available is to be divided ideally according to the capacity of students about the respective subjects.
Curriculum of GRE: – The graduate record examination is conducted as two sections namely general tests and subject tests. General tests are compulsory for all candidates where as subject tests are optional. Students have to take the optional test as per the program put forth by the respective university or college. This is reviewed on the basis of their performance in the general skill tests held in advance. Because of this reason, students must do their best in the general tests. This test consists of three sections which are verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning and analytical writing. Students have to utilize a minimum of one week for studying each section. This will enable them to get familiarized with each topic properly.
The verbal reasoning is meant for testing the competency of students in English language. This is measured by the capacity in the application of sentences and phrases and also by offering certain comprehensions to be worked out. Students can prepare for this test by reading articles, magazines, publications, books and also by going through the GRE sites available in the internet. This will help to improve their vocabulary to a great extent.
The mathematical ability of candidates is measured through quantitative reasoning. For this, students have to refresh the formulas and problems which they had studied in algebra, geometry and arithmetic during their high school studies. They can improve their quantitative abilities by solving as much problems as possible related to the various sections of the respective subject. By doing this, they can refresh the techniques and tactics to be used in quantitative reasoning.
The analytical test exposes the candidate’s talents in writing and vital thinking. In the two essays to be written for the concerned test, one is the analysis of an issue and the other is the analysis of an argument. In this type of essay writing, the support from the study guides is very limited. Candidates must read the questions well and brush up their knowledge for creating basic concepts and ideas related to the topics. While writing these essays they must take utmost care to use very simple language. The talents in essay writing can be developed only by writing more and more of such essays within the stipulated time.
Self study tips for GRE: – Students must conduct their studies for GRE with maximum care and concentration. This will render them enough confidence to face the examination. Here are some tips for the self studying students.
1) Students must decide a convenient date for the test in advance and start their studies.
2) Devote more time on weaker subjects and study new patterns as well as old ones.
3) Try to collect study guides from education libraries as far as possible.
4) All sections of skill test must be practiced well and try to memorize them often.
5) It is important to choose a comfortable atmosphere for GRE self studies.
Conclusion: – Nowadays the graduate record examinations are having typical standards. Since the higher education of students is determined on the basis of their performance in the GRE, they must give maximum priority to the same. The self study enables the candidates to practice according to their convenience. But it is essential to maintain the accuracy in the timing if they have to attempt all the questions in the allotted time. As the eligibility for the subject test is decided on the basis of their performance in the general skill tests, the self study must be carried out in such a way to get through the same outstandingly.


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