Fast-forward to August 2011. After doing some research and downloading the latest ETS GRE Practice Test HERE , I have concluded that the new GRE verbal reasoning section is not all that different from the old GRE. Sure there are some changes, but the basic concepts are the same: know your vocabulary, be able to utilize the verbal context clues, and understand the structure and function of every sentence. Fortunately, some of the same study tips I used for the old GRE apply to the new GRE. Here are three tips to help you get the best score possible!
1. One of the most helpful tools out there is definitely ETS’s POWERPREP II Software (available HEREfor free). The GRE test designers kindly release a free computer program that has an actual practice test. I recommend taking the practice test to establish what your baseline score is, figure out where you are lacking, and determine whether you can complete the test in the allotted time. Powerprep II rocks!
2. The new GRE verbal reasoning section may have removed the antonyms and analogies but it is still very heavy on vocabulary. To conquer the Sentence Completion and Sentence Equivalence questions, I recommend heading over to the nearest office depot and buy as many flashcards as your heart desires. When designing your flashcards, I find it beneficial to include a sample sentence in addition to the word and definition. Set a memorization goal for yourself and figure out a system that works best for you. I honestly made about 3000 flashcards that stayed in the backseat of my car at all times. Whenever I got some free time, I would take out a stack and quiz myself. I looked ridiculous and felt like I was wasting hours of my life but it definitely paid off.
3. My next tip is to practice reading/answering as many sample passages as possible. I anticipate that the inclusion of reading comprehension questions with 1 or more answer choices, and Select-In-Passage questions are going to make this section significantly more difficult. The trick with these questions is to become so darn familiar with the passages that while you are reading, you will see the answers in the text before you even see the questions! In other words, your goal is to think like the test-designers.
There you have it folks, Ben’s three tips for getting the best possible GRE verbal reasoning score. Check back soon for more information about the new GRE!