# Archive for the 'Preparation' Category

### GRE Graph Analysis Word Problem

For which of the following years was the ratio of the median sale price of a new home minus the median sale price of an existing home to per capita income least?

(A) 1960

(B) 1965

(C) 1970

(D) 1975

(E) 1980

The question asks for which year “the ratio of the median sale price of a new home minus the median sale price of an existing home to per capita income was least.” In other words, what is the smallest difference between the ratio of median sale price of a new home to per capita income and the ratio of median sale price of an existing home to per capita income.

TIP: Don’t allow yourself to be confused by complex phrasing, this question is all about being able to read the chart.

In the context of this question, the “ratio of the median sale price” simply refers to the lines of the graph; each line is a representation of the ratio of the median sale price (to per capita income), one for existing homes and the other for new homes. If all those words are confusing you, then just get rid of them:

For which of the following years was the ratio of the median sale price of a new home minus the median sale price of an existing home to per capita income least? Or,

For which of the following years was the price of a new home minus the price of an existing home least?

See how much more simple that question looks! Now all you have to do is determine the different ranges of the different options, by subtracting the … wait! No you don’t. Just look at the lines, there is no need to actually involve any math here. Since the difference between the two lines is represented by the space or gap between them, we can simply look and see for which year the gap was smallest. The smallest gap occurs in the year 1970. Therefore, the correct answer is (C).

Find more example problems here!

Test Masters is an industry leader in professional exam preparation. Every Test Masters course comes with a Score Increase Guarantee, click here to find out why!

### GRE Verbal Reasoning Text Completion Example Problem

Here is an example of a simple Verbal Reasoning question you might see on the GRE.

It is (i)_____ that so many artists today don’t understand the importance of sincerity in art; even the most beautiful painting, sculpture, or song will fail to transform from object to art if it lacks genuine veracity. Instead of the artist, perhaps we should blame our (ii) _____ culture, where people often mistake being shallow for being authentic.

Explanation:  One key passage to determining the answer is the phrase “will fail to transform from object to art”; this tone indicates a negative perspective about “artists today.”  Of the three answer choices, only “heinous” has a negative connotation. Thus the answer to Blank (i) is B. heinous. The key phrase to answering Blank (ii) is “if it lacks genuine veracity.” This phrase indicates that the correct answer choice will be one that means something or someone that lacks genuine veracity, or truth. Of the three answer choices, only “superficial” means concerned only with understanding the obvious or apparent. Thus the answer to Blank (ii) is E. superficial.

You can never have enough vocabulary words; here are the definitions of all the answer choices:

Impecunious means lacking money or poor. This word is synonymous with penniless.

Heinous means grossly wicked or reprehensible; abominable.

Edifying means to instruct; particularly in such a way as to encourage intellectual, moral, or spiritual improvement.

Precocious means manifesting or characterized by unusually early development or maturity, especially in mental aptitude.

Superficial means concerned with or comprehending only what is apparent or obvious; shallow.

Educable means capable of being educated or taught.

Want more help with the GRE? Check out the Test Masters GRE Course! Every Test Masters GRE Course comes with a 10 point Score Increase Guarantee. Want to see another Verbal Reasoning question? Click here!

### GRE Verbal Reasoning Text Completion Example Problem

This is a graphic of what the Electoral College will look like in 2016.

Here is an example of a simple Verbal Reasoning question you might see on the GRE.

Many concerned citizens believe the Electoral College and the Presidential electoral process is _____; they are concerned the system does not meet or respect the representative needs of America’s contemporary electorate.

(a). redundant

(b). antiquated

(c). draconian

(d). plebeian

(e). contemptible

Explanation: The key word and phrase in this passage is “contemporary electorate.” Its usage suggests the answer choice should have something to do with the age of the system. Of the available answer choices, only “antiquated” references the age of the system. Thus the answer is (b) antiquated.

You can never have enough vocabulary words; here are the definitions of all the answer choices:

Something is redundant if it is needlessly superfluous or repetitive. It is redundant to repeat the definition of redundant, because that would be redundant; not only would that be redundant, it would be very redundant.

Antiquated can refer to something’s age through its characterization of that thing as an antique; however, antiquated should be better understood as the characterization of something as obsolete or outdated (not simply old).

Draconian means exceedingly, or unduly, harsh or severe.

Someone or something is plebeian if they are common or characterized by being common, vulgar, or coarse. It may also more specifically refer to the common people of ancient Rome.

Contemptible means deserving of contempt; to be contemptible is to be deserving of disdain, to be despised, or even scorned. Contempt also has a special meaning in a legal context, which refers to being openly disrespectful or disobedient to a court or legislative body.

Have a question? Ask the experts at Test Masters!

Test Masters offers the most comprehensive and successful GRE course available; every Test Masters GRE course, whether it is online or in-class, comes with a 10 point Score Increase Guarantee.

### GRE Verbal Reasoning Text Completion Example Problem

Here is an example of a simple Verbal Reasoning question you might see on the GRE.

The independent voters of the United States have proven at times to have ­­_____ political allegiances; but that is not enough of a reason to say independents are not resolute in their own convictions.

1. mercurial
2. intransigent
3. irrepressible
4. pernicious
5. tenacious

Explanation: The key word in this passage is “resolute.” Resolute, as you should know, means firm or unwavering; its usage in this context, “independents are not resolute,” suggests the answer choice should be a word that contrasts with resolute. Of the available answer choices, the only word that contrasts with resolute is “Mercurial.” Thus the answer is (1) mercurial.

You can never have enough vocabulary words; here are the definitions of all the answer choices:

Mercurial might be used in reference to Roman Mythology (the God Mercury), chemistry (the element Mercury), or Astronomy (the planet Mercury); however, it is most often used to describe a person with a volatile temperament or someone who has those characteristics associated with the Roman God Mercury, who was swift, shrewd, and sometimes a thief.

A person is intransigent if they refuse to change or modify their opinion, particularly if their opinion is extreme. A person may be characterized as intransigent if they are consistently unwilling to compromise.

Irrepressible means difficult or impossible to control or restrain. As in, my enthusiasm for vocabulary is irrepressible!  XD

Pernicious means tending to cause death or serious injury. As in, my enthusiasm for vocabulary is in no way pernicious.

Tenacious means to firmly or persistently hold to something, like a particular viewpoint or opinion, or to hold together, or to cling to or onto something. Additionally, tenacious can refer to a tendency to retain; as in your tenacious memory gives you an advantage when remembering the definition to various vocabulary words.

Want more help with the GRE? Check out the Test Masters GRE Course! Every Test Masters GRE Course comes with a 10 point Score Increase Guarantee. Want to see another Verbal Reasoning question? Click here!

### GRE Math – Fun with Averages!

Studying for the GRE can be tough. In the mean time, let’s make sure your math score is above average by reviewing averages! Consider the following problem:

The average (arithmetic mean) of six numbers is 14. After one of the numbers is removed, the average (arithmetic mean) of the remaining numbers is 16. What number has been removed?

To solve this problem, all you need to remember is the definition of an average:

average = (sum of terms)/(number of terms)

Multiplying both sides by the number of terms, we get:

average(number of terms) = sum of terms

First, let’s figure out the sum of the terms when the average was 14:

14(6) = 84

Next, let’s do the same for the situation in which the average is 16:

16(5) = 80

The difference between the two sums must be the number that was taken out:

84 – 80 = 4

Thus, the answer is 4. That’s all there is to it! Now, try the following problem and post the answer in the comments below:

The average (arithmetic mean) of four numbers is 23. After one of the numbers is removed, the average (arithmetic mean) of the remaining numbers is 15. What number has been removed?

Good luck, and happy studying!

### GRE Text Completion

GRE Text Completion is no mystery, you just have to know your GRE vocabulary!

Here is an example of a simple Text Completion question you might see on the GRE.

1. Despite the best efforts of our nation’s most thorough reporters, the candidates’ economic reform policies remain _____; it is not enough to comment on the country’s financial straits, clearly explain to the public exactly how you intend to fix them.

A. Perspicuous

B. Loquacious

C. Diffusive

D. Opaque

E. Gratulatory

Explanation: The key phrase in this passage is “clearly explain.” The biggest reason someone would be desirous of having something “clearly explained” would be if that subject or topic is unclear. This phrase suggests the candidates have not yet “clearly explained” their positions. The answer choice in this example would then be the word that best suggests the candidates economic policies are not “clearly explained.” Of the available answer choices, only “opaque” refers to something that is not clear. Thus the answer is (d) .

You can never have enough vocabulary words; here are the definitions of all the answer choices:

Something is perspicuous when it is clearly expressed and easy to understand.

People are loquacious if they are very talkative or garrulous.

To be diffusive is to physically disseminate something, as in to pour, scatter, or spread something about, to speak at length, or to make something less brilliant, to soften.

Opaque is the opposite of transparent and translucent. To be opaque is to be murky and unintelligible.

Gratulatory is a great word because it is a less common way of saying congratulatory; the biggest difference between the two words is that gratulatory is more closely associated with the emotions of being thankful or grateful.

There are many difficult questions on the GRE, but vocabulary-type questions should never be one of them. The Text Completion question type is simply a matter of memorizing your GRE vocabulary. If you continue to have difficulty with these question types there are certain strategies you can employ to aid you in answering them on test day. One of the best strategies for GRE Text Completion questions is memorizing common word roots.

Want to know more about other study strategies for GRE Text Completion questions? All you have to do is ask. Want more example problems? Find them here.

Test Masters offers the most comprehensive and successful GRE course available; every Test Masters GRE course, whether it is online or in-class, comes with a 10 point Score Increase Guarantee.

### GRE Example Problem – Order of Operations

GRE Math isn’t so scary; just try this GRE example problem.

Learn more about what you need to know to do well on GRE Math by taking some time to complete this GRE Math example problem.

If L = (a – b) – c and R = a – (b – c), then L – R = ?

This example problem is an exercise in basic mathematical principles, particularly the Order of Operations and your understanding of the Commutative, Associative, and Distributive Laws of mathematics. Let’s do a brief review:

The Commutative Law essentially states that, when you add or multiply, you can swap the order of numbers and get the same answer. So, for example:

Addition:             X + Y = Y + X

Multiplication:  A x B = B x A

The Associative Law states pretty much the same as the Commutative Law with the additional declaration that when you are multiplying and adding groups of numbers, the grouping of those numbers is irrelevant. So, for example:

Addition:             (X + Y) + Z = (Z + Y) + X

Multiplication:  (A x B) x C = (C x B) x A

The Distributive Law says you get the same answer when you multiply a number by a group of numbers added together or multiply each number separately and then add them together. So, for example:

A x (B + C) = AB + AC

This might be easier to understand with actual numbers:

3 x (4 +5) = 3(4) + 3(5)

3 x 9 = 12 + 15

27 = 27

The Order of Operations determines the order in which certain mathematical operations act. The actual order of operations is Parentheses, Exponents, Multiplication and Division, and Addition and Subtraction. A particularly useful mnemonic device to remembering this (rather than memorizing the acronym PEMDAS) is “Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally.”

L – R = [(a – b) – c] – [a – (b – c)]

Notice that each equation has been bracketed off from the other. This is not because you cannot add or subtract these equations; it is only to signify and help you recognize that you are, in fact, beginning with and looking at the two different variables, L and R. Mainly, in this problem, brackets will help you keep track of which numbers are positive and negative.

In order to solve this problem, the first thing you should do is distribute the negative in front of the equation R represents, a – (b – c). The reason for this is that this equation includes two subtractions; so, when you subtract R from L, you will inevitably subtract a negative. Subtracting a negative turns that negative into a positive number. Observe:

L – R = [(a – b) – c] – [a – (b – c)]

L – R = [(a – b) – c] – [a – b + c]

L – R = [(a – b) – c] – a + b – c

After having successfully distributed the negative, the Commutative and Associative Laws, and the Order of Operations, tells us that we are free to solve this problem with no more hang ups:

L – R = a – b – c – a + b – c

You can reorganize for coherency:

L – R = a – a + b – b – c – c

L – R = 0 + 0 – c – c

L – R = -c – c

L – R = -2c

### GRE Verbal – Fill in the Blank

Did you know that Test Masters’ GRE course provides students with a(n) ______ method to solving those ______ fill-in-the-blank questions?

(a)   celebratory … facile

(b)   economical … sassy

(c)   melodramatic … scandalous

(d)   derogatory … petulant

(e)   effective … bothersome

If you answered (e), then you either know what you are about or have already taken the Test Masters GRE course. Test Masters is an industry leader in professional exam preparation; every Test Masters GRE course, whether online or in-class, comes with a ten point Score Increase Guarantee.

Check out the video below, which is an excerpt from the Test Masters GRE online course, for a little more instruction on how to go about correctly answering those tricky GRE vocabulary questions.

See more excerpts from Test Masters online course on the Test Masters YouTube channel.

Remember, if you want to do well on GRE Verbal, study your GRE Vocabulary!