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An Analysis of Time-Related Score Increments and/or Decrements for GRE Repeaters Across Ability and Sex Groups

Rock, Donald A.; Werts, Charles E.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS GRE Board Report
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Test Results, Sex Differences, Scores, Graduate Record Examinations (GRE), Group Differences, Repeaters (Test Takers)


The purpose of this study was to obtain information on both the number of individuals who retest and their patterns of score gain (or decrement) by sex and ability. Individuals who retested only once were found to gain about 26 - 27 points on the verbal test and about 23 points on the quantitative test. This finding is tempered by the fact that repeaters are a self-selected group whose average scores were below the mean on initial testing; average gains on retest by a random sample of all test takers almost certainly would be somewhat less. Individuals who retested more than once were, on the average, of lower ability than the single retest individuals. The multiple retesters gained less on the average than the higher ability single retest individuals. The amount of verbal gain was positively related to the length of time between the initial test and the first retest. This result was interpreted primarily as an increase in knowledge and to a lesser extent an increase in test-taking skills. There was no relationship between time lapse and quantitative gains.

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