How Many Times Can You Take the GRE

How Many Times Can You Take the GRE: A Comprehensive Guide

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is a standardized test often required for graduate program admission. Many students wonder how many times they can take the GRE.

You can take the GRE once every 21 days, up to five times within any continuous rolling 12-month period (365 days), even if you canceled your scores on a previous test.

It is important to note that the retaking test policy will be enforced even if a violation is not immediately identified (e.g., inconsistent registration information).

If a participant wanted to retake the assessment a sixth time, they would have to wait for 365 days from the first assessment date. The 21-day waiting period is designed to give you time to prepare for the next test and ensure you have enough time to receive your scores before your application deadlines.

Frequency of Taking the GRE

The GRE can be taken multiple times in 12 months. However, certain restrictions must be considered. The test can only be attempted five times in a rolling 12-month period.

This means that if a person takes the GRE for the first time on March 15, 2021, they can take it again after 21 days, which would be April 5, 2021. If they take it again on April 5, they can take it again on April 26, and so on. However, they cannot exceed five attempts within a continuous rolling 12-month period.

Preparing for the GRE

Preparing for the GRE is a crucial step toward achieving a high score. It requires dedication, hard work, and a well-planned study schedule. The following tips can help test-takers prepare for the GRE:

  • Start by researching the average GRE scores of the schools you are interested in applying to. This will give you an idea of the score you should aim for.
  • Identify your weaknesses and knowledge gaps. This will help you focus your study efforts on areas that need improvement.
  • Create a study schedule that works for you. Allocate enough time for each section of the GRE, and include breaks and time off to avoid burnout.
  • Utilize official GRE prep material, such as the official GRE practice test, to understand the test format and types of questions.
  • Consider taking a GRE prep course or hiring a tutor if you need additional support.
  • Practice, practice, practice. Take as many practice tests as possible to build your confidence and identify improvement areas.
  • Use GRE prep books and other study materials to supplement your practice tests and reinforce your knowledge.

GRE Scoring System

The GRE General Test scores are reported in three sections: Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and Analytical Writing. Each section is scored on a scale of 130-170 with one-point increments. The Analytical Writing section is scored on a scale of 0-6 with half-point increments.

A perfect score on the GRE General Test is 340, with 170 on each section. However, the score goal for each test-taker may vary depending on their program requirements and personal goals.

Test-takers can send their scores to up to four graduate programs or business schools for free. Additional score reports can be sent for a fee. The score report includes the test-takers highest score on each section from all of their test attempts in the past five years.

Test-takers can use ScoreSelect to choose which GRE scores to send to their designated institutions. With ScoreSelect, test-takers can send their most recent or highest scores from all test attempts in the past five years.

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Quantitative scores are often emphasized in STEM programs, while verbal scores are more important in humanities programs. A good GRE score depends on the program requirements and the test-taker’s goals. Test-takers can research the average GRE scores for their desired programs to determine a good score goal.

Retaking the GRE

Retaking the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is common among students who are unsatisfied with their initial scores. The GRE is a standardized test that measures verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking, and analytical writing skills. It is a crucial part of the graduate school application process.

According to the Educational Testing Service (ETS), test-takers are allowed to retake the GRE no more than five times within any continuous 365-day period. However, they must wait at least 21 days to retake the GRE, regardless of how many times they’ve taken it in the last 365 days. It is important to note that GRE Subject Tests are offered only thrice yearly, so students cannot take those every 21 days.

Retaking the GRE multiple times has its advantages and disadvantages. The pros and cons of retaking the GRE are presented in the table below:

Pros of Retaking the GRE Cons of Retaking the GRE
The opportunity to improve your score The cost of taking the test multiple times
The ability to showcase your improvement to graduate schools The risk of not improving your score or scoring lower
The option to choose which scores to send to graduate schools The stress and pressure of retaking the test
The chance to demonstrate your commitment and perseverance The potential for burnout and fatigue

It is only advisable to retake the GRE if students are confident they will score higher. Retaking the GRE without proper preparation may not yield better results. It is important to identify the areas that need improvement and focus on them during the preparation process.

GRE Test Dates and Deadlines

The GRE General Test is offered year-round, and test-takers can take the exam once every 21 days, up to five times within any continuous rolling 12-month period (365 days). This policy applies even if a test-taker canceled their scores on a previous test.

When selecting a test date, test-takers should ensure their scores will be reported in time for their application deadlines. Most graduate programs have specific application deadlines, so checking them before scheduling a test date is essential.

It is best to give yourself at least 3 to 4 months before the deadline to prepare for the GRE. Test-takers should consider whether they have the time, energy, and resources to prepare for the exam. Taking the GRE means that you have to allocate time for review, practice tests, and courses. Sticking to a study schedule consistently is essential.

Test-takers should also be aware of the GRE registration deadlines. The deadline to register for the GRE General Test is typically two to three weeks before the test date. Test-takers should register early to secure their preferred testing location and date.

GRE Registration and Policies

Test-takers should be aware of a few policies when registering for the GRE. The Educational Testing Service (ETS) administers the GRE and has established specific guidelines for registration, rescheduling, and retaking the exam.

Firstly, test-takers can register for the GRE through their “My GRE” account, which they must create before signing up for the exam. Registration can be done online or by phone; payment must be made with a credit or debit card.

It is important to note that registration fees vary depending on the test location, and additional fees may apply for certain services, such as rescheduling or sending score reports to additional schools.

Secondly, test-takers are allowed to take the GRE once every 21 days, up to five times within any continuous rolling 12-month period (365 days). This applies even if they canceled their scores on a test taken previously. However, it is important to note that GRE Subject Tests are offered only thrice yearly, so they cannot be taken every 21 days.

Thirdly, the retaking test policy will be enforced even if a violation, such as inconsistent registration information, is not immediately identified. Test-takers who violate the policies may have their scores canceled, be barred from taking the GRE in the future, or face other penalties.

Lastly, if test-takers need to reschedule their exam, they can do so online or by phone. However, rescheduling fees apply and vary depending on the time frame in which the rescheduling is done. It is important to note that rescheduling may also affect the availability of preferred test dates and locations.

Cost and Fees of the GRE

Taking the GRE comes with a cost, and it’s essential to understand the fees involved before registering for the test. The cost of the GRE General Test varies depending on the test-taker’s location. The standard test fee is $205 worldwide, while test-takers in Australia, China, and Nigeria pay $230. Individuals taking the GRE Subject Test pay $150 worldwide.

In addition to the test fee, test-takers may also incur additional fees. For instance, test-takers who wish to change their test center or test date after registration will have to pay a rescheduling fee of $50. Similarly, those who want to change their test subject will pay a fee of $50.

Test-takers can also purchase additional services to help them prepare for the test. For example, the POWERPREP PLUS® Online Practice Test 1 and 2 cost $40 each, while ScoreItNow!™ Online Writing Practice costs $20. Test-takers who purchased General Test vouchers before November 1, 2022, can pay 50% of the General Test fee.

Test-takers who want to send their test scores to additional institutions must pay a reporting fee of $27 per recipient. However, test-takers can send their scores for free to up to four institutions or programs.

GRE Test Centers and Formats

The GRE General Test can be taken at authorized test centers worldwide. It is administered in two formats: computer-based and paper-based.

Computer-based tests are offered year-round on a first-come, first-served basis. Test-takers can choose from various test dates and times at test centers near them. The test is administered on a computer and consists of six sections, including an unscored research section. The total testing time is about three hours and 45 minutes.

Paper-based tests are offered only in areas where computer-based testing is not available. Test-takers can choose from limited test dates and must register by mail. The test consists of six sections, including an unscored research section, and takes about four hours to complete.

Test-takers must arrive at the test center at least 30 minutes before the scheduled test time on test day. They must bring a valid ID that matches the name they used to register for the test. Test-takers cannot bring electronic devices, including cell phones, into the testing room.

Applying to Graduate Schools with GRE Scores

Most graduate programs require a minimum GRE score, which varies depending on the institution and the program. Researching the requirements of the specific graduate program you are applying to is important.

The GRE score is just one of many factors considered in the graduate school application process. Other factors may include undergraduate GPA, letters of recommendation, and work experience related to the program.

It is possible to take the GRE multiple times to improve your score. The GRE can be taken up to five times a year if the test dates are 21 days apart. However, it is important to note that some graduate programs may require you to submit all of your GRE scores, while others may only consider your highest score.

When applying to graduate schools with GRE scores, it is important to remember that a strong GRE score can help your application, but it is not the only factor considered. You must also have a strong overall application, including a professional resume, letters of recommendation, and a well-written personal statement.

Special Accommodations for GRE Test Takers

The Educational Testing Service (ETS) provides special accommodations for test-takers with disabilities or health-related needs and those who cannot take the test under standard conditions. These accommodations ensure that all test-takers have an equal opportunity to demonstrate their skills and knowledge.

Some common accommodations for GRE test-takers include extended testing time, extra breaks, ergonomic keyboards, and screen magnification. Test-takers can receive up to 50% extra time or “time and a half” for the test. They can also take extra breaks for medication, snacks, or restroom trips, which are not included in the testing time.

To receive special accommodations, test-takers must submit a request to ETS Disability Services. The request should include documentation of the disability or health-related need and a description of the requested accommodations. Test-takers can submit their request via email or mail/courier service.

GRE Subject Tests

In addition to the general GRE, ETS offers Subject Tests that measure knowledge in specific subject areas. These tests are designed for students with an undergraduate major or extensive background in the subject area.

Currently, ETS offers Subject Tests in the following areas:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Literature in English
  • Mathematics (including Algebra and Geometry)
  • Physics
  • Psychology

Each Subject Test is scored on a 200-990 scale in 10-point increments. However, the score range for any particular test is usually smaller. For example, the Mathematics Subject Test has a score range of 520-920.

It’s important to note that beginning in September 2023, percent correct scores will be reported for the Physics and Psychology Tests on a range of 0-100.

Students can take a Subject Test once every 21 days, and the tests are only offered thrice yearly. Therefore, it is crucial to plan and ensure that scores will be reported in time for any application deadlines.

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