The GRE Sucks

The Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) is a pain in the side of any undergraduate who wants to continue their education and go to graduate school. It is a daunting task. The test is filled with strange logistic questions and pitfalls that the test creators are certain you will fall into. And that GRE prep book that you just spent upwards of $20 on – how do you get through that momentous brick of knowledge? If you are on the GRE study grind or about to begin it, here are some tips and tricks to get you through the process.

First of all, you have to register for the GRE. I would give yourself at least three months studying time, unless you like paying $200 more than once. The website that you go to is This may seem easy enough, but this site’s scheduling widget makes things complicated, and it made my computer run choppy. So allot enough time for yourself to read the directions of the website carefully and make sure that you do not schedule the GRE on a particularly stressful week. Personally, I am taking mine May 27, because my knowledge from my undergraduate education will still be fresh in my brain, and I will have a whole month off of school to really dedicate to studying.

Next, you should get to know the GRE and its components. Look up how the sections of the test are set up, how there is no penalty for wrong answers (so guess away!), how many breaks you get, and other things of that nature. The more prepared you are for the test, the less test anxiety will affect you – at least in my experience.

Now for the real bulk of the work, the actual studying of the prep book. My greatest challenge was just starting the dang thing. I read through the introduction, and then I did not touch if for a week because I was so busy with school. It is hard to fit in studying for the GRE when you have five actual college classes to worry about. Of course, you have to worry about graduating first before you even take the GRE, but it is important that you set aside at least one hour a day to read a couple of pages in your GRE book.

Everyone has different study habits, but what works for me is marking how many pages I should be studying a day in the actual prep book. This helps me visualize the progress I am making, which keeps me motivated. Always study your GRE prep book in a quiet place alone or with other people dedicated to doing work. I always study in my room with some light classical music playing and maybe a candle or two lit. Whatever helps you get focused!

The last step is actually taking the GRE. For the test, make sure you dress in comfy layers just in case the temperature is uncomfortable in the test room. Bring a bottle of water, a snack, and two forms of ID. And do not forget all of the knowledge you stuffed into you brain to pass the daunting GRE! Good luck, folks.

Published by Odyssey Online on Apr. 11, 2016


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