What Are Gre Tests And Who Takes Them

By Daniel Millions

These tests are meant to gauge undergraduate achievement in the following eight disciplines. Biochemistry, Molecular and cell biology, chemistry, literature in English, physics, biology, computer science, mathematics and psychology. Each of these Graduate Record Exam tests is meant for students who have either majored in or have a great deal of background in that particular area.

Who Takes Them and Why: Those graduate applicants who expect to graduate from an accredited college are able to take the GRE tests. These test scores are then used by the admissions department or fellowship panels to supplement a student’s undergraduate records and any other qualifications that are necessary for graduate study.

The GRE test scores are used like a measuring stick in order to compare the applicant’s qualifications and they will also be a help in the evaluation of grades as well as other recommendations. Some of the tests in certain subject areas will yield subscores which will indicate not only the strengths but also the weaknesses of the individual students preparation. These tests may also be helpful for guidance and placement purposes.

At What Time are These Tests Given: The GRE subject tests are offered three times a year at paper-based test centers all over the world. The months these tests are given in are April, October and November.


Who Accepts Them: Any accredited business, graduate or professional school, which includes any division or department within a school, may recommend or require the students who are applying take the General Test, one or more of the subject tests or both. Applicants can have their test scores sent to a non-accredited institution only if it is approved by the GRE Board.

Requirements of Tests: The test on biochemistry encompasses approximately 180 multiple-choice questions. Some of the questions on this test are based on descriptions of diagrams, laboratory situations or experimental results. This test is organized into three main areas: cell biology, biochemistry and molecular biology and genetics. Test questions will cover eukaryotes and prokaryotes.

The GRE test on biology contains approximately 200 five-choice questions. Some of these questions are based on descriptions of field and laboratory situations, experimental results or diagrams. Three major areas are included in this test: organismal biology, cellular and molecular biology and ecology and evolution.

The test on chemistry contains about 130 multiple-choice questions. A periodic table as well as other information is printed in the student’s test booklet. This GRE test encompasses the four fields into which this subject has been traditionally divided.

The GRE test on computer science contains approximately 70 multiple-choice questions. Some of these questions are grouped into sets and are based on such materials as graphs, diagrams and program fragments. Only an approximation is given of the percentages. These may vary slightly from each test edition.

The Graduate Record Exam in literature in English contains approximately 230 questions on drama, the essay, the novel, literary theory, poetry, biography, the short story, criticism and the history of language. This GRE test consists of literature from the U.S., the British Isles and other global areas. You may even find some questions on the Bible.

The GRE test on mathematics contains about 66 multiple-choice questions. You will find that about half of the questions involve calculus. Approximately of the questions will cover areas such as elementary algebra, abstract algebra, linear algebra and number theory.

The Graduate Record Exam on physics contains about 100 five-choice questions. You will find that some of these questions cover diagrams, experimental data, graphs and descriptions of physical situations.

Finally, the GRE test on psychology contains about 205 multiple-choice questions. These questions come mainly from courses that are offered in psychology at the undergraduate level.

About the Author: Learn about the GRE and where to find GRE registration.

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