The GRE® revised General Test

The GRE® revised General test plays a vital role in the admissions process for graduate and business school programs around the world. The test measures verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking and analytical writing skills that have been developed over a long period of time and are required for success in graduate and business school. Test content is closely aligned with the skills needed to succeed in today's graduate and business school programs, and the test-taker friendly features provide a flexible testing experience for prospective applicants that helps them approach test day with more confidence.

Testing Around the World

The GRE revised General Test is administered in a secure testing environment at about 700 ETS-authorized test centers in more than 160 countries. In most regions of the world, the computer-based GRE revised General Test is administered on a continuous basis throughout the year. In Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Korea, the computer-based test is administered one to three times per month. In areas of the world where the computer-based test is not available, the test is administered in a paper-based format up to three times per year (October 12, 2013, November 9, 2013 and February 8, 2014).

Structure of the Computer-based GRE revised General Test

Test structure and length of the computer-based test
Section Number of Questions Time
Analytical Writing (One section with two separately timed tasks) One "Analyze an Issue" task and one "Analyze an Argument" task 30 minutes per task
Verbal Reasoning (Two sections) 20 questions per section 30 minutes per section
Quantitative Reasoning (Two sections) 20 questions per section 35 minutes per section
Unscored or Research Section* Varies Varies

*An unidentified unscored section may be included and may appear in any order after the Analytical Writing section. Additionally, an identified research section that is not scored may be included in place of the unscored section, and it is always at the end of the test.

Structure of the Paper-based GRE revised General Test

Test structure and length of the paper-based test
Section Number of Questions Time
Analytical Writing (Two sections) Section 1: "Analyze an Issue" task 30 minutes per section
Section 2: "Analyze an Argument" task
Verbal Reasoning (Two sections) 25 questions per section 35 minutes per section
Quantitative Reasoning (Two sections) 25 questions per section 40 minutes per section

Content on the GRE revised General Test

The skills measured on the GRE revised General Test include the test-taker's ability to do the following:

Analytical Writing

  • Articulate complex ideas clearly and effectively.
  • Examine claims and accompanying evidence.
  • Support ideas with relevant reasons and examples.
  • Sustain a well-focused, coherent discussion.
  • Control the elements of standard written English.

See Analytical Writing Sample Questions.

Verbal Reasoning

  • Analyze and draw conclusions from discourse; reason from incomplete data; identify author's assumptions and/or perspective; understand multiple levels of meaning such as literal, figurative and author's intent.
  • Select important points; distinguish major from minor or relevant points; summarize text; understand the structure of a text.
  • Understand the meanings of words, sentences and entire texts; understand relationships among words and among concepts.

See Verbal Reasoning Sample Questions.

Quantitative Reasoning

  • Understand quantitative information.
  • Interpret and analyze quantitative information.
  • Solve problems using mathematical models.
  • Apply basic mathematical skills and elementary mathematical concepts of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, probability and statistics.

See Quantitative Reasoning Sample Questions.

Additional Resources

To review a simulated version of the computer-based GRE revised General Test, download the FREE POWERPREP® II software that is available for test takers. For more information and resources about the GRE revised General Test, visit the GRE Information Center.

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