GRE or the Graduation Record Examination is a doorway for fresh graduates to venture their ways into the world’s top university. Every year lakhs of students take the exam from different parts of the world to make way for the best learning abodes in the world. The GRE exam helps universities in assessing the capability of students to pursue masters and doctoral courses. The test is conducted at locations spread across the globe in more than 150 countries.
The scheme of tests is such that anybody can take the test without having the need to study in a particular curriculum. One of the best things about the GRE test is that it democratizes the syllabus so that anyone with basic knowledge of the subjects that are part of the syllabus can ace it. The only bone of contention is practice. One needs to do a lot of practice to hone their skill tested in different test sections.
There is no dearth of resources available in the market. Both online and offline resources are available for students. Some of the resources online are paid, while there are many that are free of cost. So, it depends on students how they choose to use these free resources to ace the exam without spending a ton of money on study materials. However, these free resources are mere additions and can’t replace the core study material. One needs to buy books and additional GRE sample papers for a robust and structured preparation.
Free Online Resources For All To Practice
There is a very famous quote by NBA legend Michael Jordan, “You can practice shooting eight hours a day, but if your technique is wrong, then all you become is very good at shooting the wrong way. Get the fundamentals down, and the level of everything you do will rise.” So practice is paramount but practicing from the right resources is even more important. Here is the list of the best resources that are available online and that too free of cost.
Powerprep by ETS
For beginners, this is the best software that comes directly from ETS, and it has a very user-friendly interface that helps students develop an affinity towards online tests. The software helps students understand basic things related to the test, e.g. returning questions, flagging questions, etc. It also helps the test-takers in understanding the types of questions being asked, time management during the test, understanding the scoring system, etc.
Magoosh’s GRE vocabulary flashcards
Magoosh GRE vocabulary flashcards are the best and can be really helpful for those struggling in this section of the test. The flashcards are easy to use and are available both as an app and on the desktop. Students get around 1000 words that are most common in the GRE preparation and can make a considerable difference in building a solid vocabulary. One of the best things about flashcards is that they progressively increase the level of words. So, it helps all students irrespective of their grasp of the English language, making it universally useful. The app is available at both the iOS and Android play stores, so it helps students revise these words right on their mobile phones.
ETS Essay Topic Pools
ETS essay topic pool is perhaps the most authentic resource on the internet that can actually make a substantial difference in test preparation. It provides a list of tasks from which topics will be chosen for the original test. This means that if test takers prepare all these topics, the chances are very likely to get the exact same topic in the test. The essay topics are available for both Analytical writing and argument topic. Practicing with these essay topics is a sure-shot way of getting a high score in the writing section. The only thing is to prepare for as many tasks as possible and not copy from the online answers. Originality in writing is key to scoring a great score in the writing section, and this free resource can help test-takers achieve a near-perfect score in the writing section.
Kaplan GRE Practice Test
Kaplan tests are meant for those who have their basics sorted and are at a decent level of preparation. This is helpful for those who are in the advanced level of preparation and looking for tests that are a notch higher than the original GRE test. The Kaplan GRE practice test helps students in gaining confidence by solving tough questions. So, students getting lower scores in these tests don’t have to worry as the GRE exam asks questions that are way easier than the ones asked in the practice tests by Kaplan.
Practice Book for the paper-based GRE exam
It is another addition by the ETS in the free resources section to help students in getting good scores in the paper-based GRE exam. It offers a complete package and includes the following:
- Strategies used by toppers and suggested by experts to score maximum in each section.
- Sample test papers curated for the needs of students at all the levels of preparation, viz. beginners, intermediate, or at an advanced level of preparation.
- Detailed explanation for verbal, reasoning, and quantitative sections helps students understand the problems properly and understand the questions asked in the test.
- Analytical writing samples are coupled with scored Analytical Writing responses that are of great help to first-time test takers. This helps students in writing the correct way and rectifying their errors. Readers commentaries are also available that helps test-takers in further honing their writing skills.
Manhattan Prep’s GRE practice test
Manhattan prep’s test gives students a realistic experience of the GRE test, and it is crafted precisely like the original test. It is a free test package that gives GRE sample papers with explanations. The tests are easily accessible on the web page, and there is no need to download an app or software on the computer. The test helps students understand what the real test looks like and get over the fear and uncertainties that might have been in their minds.
It is one of the best free resources available online. It is even recommended by the ETS as a platform to learn different sections. There is no course per se on GRE, but different sections of GRE are available for practice and learning. This platform enables students to have a broad-based understanding of subjects and topics that are asked in the GRE test. For instance, the vocabulary section is designed so that students from all walks of life and education levels can benefit from the resources available on the website. Similarly, brushing up the basics of quantitative sections to advanced level problems can be accessed at the website.
Manhattan Review GRE diagnostic test
Manhattan review tests are meant for focusing on different sections of the test. The test is focused on different areas and also on the test as a whole. All sections can be approached in a wholesome manner so that one can assess their preparation level for each section. This test helps students in taking a focussed approach to different sections depending on their strengths and weaknesses.
Toppers and experts seek these resources and recommend them to get high scores in the first attempt itself. The GRE test is not about becoming an expert in different subjects; rather, it’s more about practicing and having a conceptual understanding of the subjects asked in the test. One can ensure conceptual understanding by solving as many test papers as they can, and these resources help them. However, these must be used as additional resources, and students shouldn’t depend solely on these resources.