How the Test Is Scored

Score Scales

Three scores are reported on the GRE® General Test:

  • a Verbal Reasoning score reported on a 130–170 score scale, in 1-point increments
  • a Quantitative Reasoning score reported on a 130–170 score scale, in 1-point increments
  • an Analytical Writing score reported on a 0–6 score scale, in half-point increments

Any section in which you answer no questions at all will be reported as a No Score (NS).

Computer-delivered Test

For the Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning measures of the computer-delivered GRE General Test, the reported scores are based on the number of correct responses to all the questions included in the operational sections of the measure.

The Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning measures are section-level adaptive. This means the computer selects the second operational section of a measure based on your performance on the first section. Within each section, all questions contribute equally to the final score. For each of the two measures, a raw score is computed. The raw score is the number of questions you answered correctly.

The raw score is converted to a scaled score through a process known as equating. The equating process accounts for minor variations in difficulty among the different test editions as well as the differences in difficulty introduced by the section-level adaptation. Thus a given scaled score for a particular measure reflects the same level of performance regardless of which second section was selected and when the test was taken.

For the Analytical Writing section, each essay receives a score from at least one trained reader, using a six-point holistic scale. In holistic scoring, readers are trained to assign scores on the basis of the overall quality of an essay in response to the assigned task. The essay is then scored by e-rater®, a computerized program developed by ETS that is capable of identifying essay features related to writing proficiency. If the human and the e-rater scores closely agree, the average of the two scores is used as the final score. If they disagree, a second human score is obtained, and the final score is the average of the two human scores.

The final scores on the two essays are then averaged and rounded to the nearest half-point interval on the 0–6 score scale. A single score is reported for the Analytical Writing measure. The primary emphasis in scoring the Analytical Writing section is on your critical thinking and analytical writing skills rather than on grammar and mechanics. Read the "Issue" and "Argument" scoring guides below.

During the scoring process, your essay responses on the Analytical Writing section will be reviewed by ETS essay-similarity-detection software and by experienced essay readers. See Independent Intellectual Activity.

Paper-delivered Test

For the Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning sections of the paper-delivered GRE General Test, a raw score is computed. The raw score is the number of questions answered correctly.

The raw score is then converted to a scaled score through a process known as equating. The equating process accounts for differences in difficulty among the different test editions. Thus, a given scaled score for a particular measure reflects the same level of ability, regardless of the edition of the test that was taken.

For the Analytical Writing section, each essay receives a score from two trained readers, using a six-point holistic scale. In holistic scoring, readers are trained to assign scores on the basis of the overall quality of an essay in response to the assigned task. If the two assigned scores differ by more than one point on the scale, the discrepancy is adjudicated by a third GRE reader. Otherwise, the two scores on each essay are averaged.

The final scores on the two essays are then averaged and rounded to the nearest half-point interval on the 0–6 score scale. A single score is reported for the Analytical Writing measure. The primary emphasis in scoring the Analytical Writing section is on your critical thinking and analytical writing skills rather than on grammar and mechanics. Read the "Issue" and "Argument" scoring guides below.

During the scoring process, your essay responses on the Analytical Writing section will be reviewed by ETS essay-similarity-detection software and by experienced essay readers. See Independent Intellectual Activity.

GRE Test Takers Revised General

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