The Graduate Record Examination (GRE®)
The GRE® is important.
The GRE® is a rite of passage, pure and simple.
It can make or break applications. The more competitive the program, the weightier becomes the GRE®, especially the advanced subject test. To do well, you need to study for it. We at Entablature recommend 6-12 months studying for the generals and 12-24 months for the advanced exam. Typically, the most successful students study for the GRE® during their sophomore and junior years and take it at the end of their sophomore or junior year. The advanced exam, which we advise taking in the fall of the senior year, will take the junior year and the summer preceding senior year to prepare for. The more you study, the better you will do.
If you would rather work after graduation (preferably in a field of graduate interest) while studying for the GRE®, we applaud the effort. The more time and energy you invest in preparation, the better will be your results. What is more, you will have matured – personally and intellectually. There is little that faculty like more than focused students.
Finally, there are scores of GRE® preparation publications available. Spend an afternoon in your local bookstore. Leaf through the books, and pick one or two. Do what they tell you to do! The more funds you have to invest preparing for the GRE®, the better. Take test courses, complete study manuals and practice doing problems with friends. Surf the Internet for materials too. Sometimes you can learn important information on chat boards.