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Secrets to acing the GRE
So, you’ve decided to apply to graduate school? Congratulations! I’d say you’re 50% of the way there. All you need to do now is fill out your applications, submit your transcripts, secure some recommendation letters, and…take the GRE. Yikes!
Finding patterns in exponent problems on the GRE Quantitative section
One thing about GRE quant questions and standardized test math questions more broadly: if a question seems impossible or like it will take a ridiculously long amount of time to complete… It isn’t as difficult as it seems! Let’s dive right into a practice problem to see an example. Take the following numeric entry problem:
A short guide to using the GRE’s on-screen calculator
The Quantitative Reasoning section of the GRE is unique in that it provides a tool that sections on similar standardized exams lack: an on-screen calculator. Though this distinction may relieve those who feel intimidated by math or by standardized exams in general, it also challenges those trying to determine the best strategy for employing its ...
My experience with the “GRE at Home” remote exam
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, ETS has been offering the option to take the GRE at home (right now, through September 2020) instead of the traditional in-person format. Several months ago, I took the GRE in this format, and share some of my experience and advice below.
How to find success on GRE Verbal Reasoning section without memorizing the dictionary
One of the most daunting parts of early GRE prep planning is realizing how many seldom-used words can appear on the test. While a comprehensive plan to comb through the dictionary memorizing each word you don’t know may sound like the best plan of action, odds are you don’t have the time, energy, or patience to do this. Even if you were to (which ...
Three Key Lessons from a Lifetime of Test Taking
As someone who’s spent over twenty years in school and is currently pursuing both MD and MPP degrees, I’ve taken my fair share of tests. For as long as I can remember, tests have been both milestones and gatekeepers. The first “high-stakes” tests I took were the SAT and ACT in preparation for college admissions. After many midterms and finals in ...
Taking a hypothesis-driven approach to cracking GRE text completion questions
When I first approached GRE text completion questions, I did what came naturally to me and what has been reinforced by years of standardized testing: I read the question, read the possible answers, and decided which answer seemed most right using the tools in my toolbelt--process of elimination, logical deduction, and the like. Maybe, if I was ...
The Pomodoro Technique
Maybe you have just begun studying for the GREs; maybe you’re about to write your personal statement for applications; maybe you have a set of formulas you need to memorize. Whatever it is you are setting out to begin, your relationship to that work and how it fits into your life isn't just a matter what it is you want to accomplish, but how you ...
MBA Admissions: GRE vs GMAT?
Should you take the GMAT or the GRE for MBA applications? First, let’s start with the key difference between the tests:
Grad school standardized testing: to re-test or not to re-test?
So you got your score back from the standardized test you need to apply to graduate school, and you’re not thrilled. What now?
Law school admissions: taking the GRE or the LSAT (or both)
Increasingly, law schools are rethinking the LSAT as the best (and only) metric of law school success. Its predictive value has long been questioned, and law school deans often publicly question how useful a tool it is (and then proceed to use it, powerfully, anyways).
Data Analytics And Other Topics To Review For The GRE
Basic Data Analysis Topics Do not underestimate the data analysis section of the GRE. It covers a lot of material, one of which is probability (which is an advanced topic) and that isn't taught very well in school. But probability is also a very small percentage of the test, so think hard about whether or not you want to spend time on it if you ...
Why Active Reading Matters When Studying for the GRE
We all read so much these days -- texts, lists, ads, articles, more ads, email.  But really what we’re doing here (for the most part) is skimming.  We’re looking for the information we want, not caring much about what falls by the wayside, and moving on.   In this blog I want to teach you a tactic -- we call it “active reading” -- that will help ...
Eight essential tips for the GRE mathematics section
I want to give you a few more GRE quant power tips. There are 8. (8 also happens to be my favorite number.  I like that it is so symmetric.  I like that when I push it over, it is the infinity sign or a pair of glasses or the two wheels of my bike).   Anyways…
Crucial Habits for Success on GRE Verbal
I'm Andrew Jungclaus -- I've been a GRE tutor at Cambridge Coaching since 2012, and have tutored over 1000 hours, working with dozens of students to improve their scores. By day, I'm also a Ph.D. candidate in American religious history at Columbia University, so I am intimately familiar with putting in long hours to complete a major goal.  I ...
How to get started on the GRE Math section
  How do you feel about math? Let’s take a minute to think about math and how we feel about it. Good memories or bad? Or both? If I were to draw an analogy about math and anything else, it would be a foreign language. You can’t forget what you learned in arithmetic and expect to do well in algebra, just like you can’t forget how to conjugate ...
7 essential tips for ANY standardized test
Whether you’re applying to college, graduate school, law school, medical school, or even some jobs, standardized tests are often part of the process. They can be intimidating, long, arduous, and confusing, but with some practice, you’ll learn how to overcome any test-taking anxiety and stay focused. Here are a few tips and tricks for going into a ...
What I Told My Sister About Studying for the GRE
As many older siblings can tell you, sometimes your younger siblings would rather go hiking in Antarctica before they ask for the tiniest bit of help or advice. So you can imagine my surprise when I got this message from my youngest sister a few months ago:  Sis : i’m finally kinda trying to maybe somewhat get more serious about gre prep Sis : ...
Top six GRE Verbal pro tips to study smarter, not harder
I get it: endlessly drilling vocabulary, parsing paragraphs, and reading about complex astrophysics are not the most fun ways to spend sunny Saturday afternoons. But with a little strategy, you can study in a way that is efficient for your time and focus on the things you need to know for the test. Here are six pro tips for GRE Verbal from a ...
7 Key Strategies to Boost your Score on the GRE from a Master
There are many opportunities to make mistakes on the GRE, and our Master tutor Greg has witnessed all of them.  With over 500 hours of experience teaching with Cambridge Coaching, he is one of the most well-qualified GRE tutors out there.  What are the most common problems he addresses?  Some of the answers may surprise you.  Greg shares his ...
Who struggles with GRE quant? (Hint: Pretty Much Everyone)
We might expect that the only students who avoided math for years will struggle with the quant section, which deals mostly with topics from a middle school/high school Algebra I class. In fact, students of all stripes encounter a range of challenges. Most students experience a unique combination of strengths and “growing edges,” but here are some ...
Tips and Challenges for Reading and Responding to GRE Passages
Map to Remember GRE passages can be dense and academic like the kind of materials you may encounter in graduate school. These passages place you in the middle of a scholarly conversation, and your role is get your bearings quickly, without getting distracted by details you don’t need to fully grasp. In most passages, the beginning typically ...
The Universal Standardized Test Taking Strategy: Know the Policy
This week, one of our Master level tutors shares the most commonly forgotten test taking strategy: know the testing policy. Greg's anecdote sheds light on the responsibility of the student and the tutor to learn the policies of the test, and understand what motivates test policy changes.
Tools to Cut Through the Quantitative Section of the GRE
The right tools will allow you to cut through just about any problem on the GRE quantitative section. Many topics but a few key strategies Probably the biggest challenge that students face when approaching the quantitative section on the GRE is the sheer range of topics, which cover numerous concepts up through early high school math. The upside ...
How to use logic to beat the vocab section of the GRE
When logic beats vocab While a college vocabulary is certainly larger than a high school vocabulary, particularly for students of the humanities and social studies, there are still a precious few of us who regularly use or even see words like “tyro” or “contumacious.” The majority of text completion (TC) and sentence equivalence (SE) questions do ...
GRE Vocabulary: Two Key Strategies to Boost Your Score
Cultivating Your Vocabulary Students often feel like vocabulary is one of the biggest hurdles to preparing for the GRE. While vocabulary on the old GRE, pre-2011 played a very outsized role in comprising the verbal score, it’s still important today, although it’s more tied to context, use, and logical thinking. if you have more than a few weeks to ...
Your GRE argument analysis essay checklist
The argument analysis task presents you with a hypothetical situation and draws conclusions based on very weak evidence. Your job is to identify flaws in the argument, in this movement from evidence to conclusion.
Five Key Strategies: GMAT and GRE
Whether you're deciding to take the GMAT or the GRE, or you're merely weeks away from your test day, it is easy to get caught up in the tedious bits of advice that every blog, manual, and friend has to offer.  These five key strategies will help ground your long-term testing goals:
Acing the GRE essay Part III: A strategy for practicing
Of the two essays on the analytical writing section, most students find the issue essay to be the hardest. It requires creative use of existing knowledge to deliver an original, nuanced, and detailed perspective on a new topic in just half an hour. To prepare, students need a clear order of operations and concrete tools for organizing their own ...
Acing the GRE Part III - A strategy for practicing
 Of the two essays on the analytical writing section, most students find the issue essay to be the hardest. It requires creative use of existing knowledge to deliver an original, nuanced, and detailed perspective on a new topic in just half an hour. To prepare, students need a clear order of operations and concrete tools for organizing their own ...
Acing the GRE essay Part II - How to use the scoring scale wisely
Many students don’t know how to use the scoring scale strategically. First, they read the sample essays on the GRE website and find these examples unattainable. Second, they allocate too much time aiming for a top score of 5 or 6. Third, they’re confused if their sample essays don’t match the typical profiles for each scoring category. Here is ...
Acing the GRE essay, part I: ingredients of a great GRE issue essay
GRE students often approach the issue essay wondering, “I know what good writing was in college, but what does the GRE want from me?” The short answer is that ETS sums up scoring criteria in rubric form and shares sample essays that show exactly what they want. The better answer is that they want to test you on certain key elements of a successful ...
GRE Coaching Approaches with Anahid Modrek
This week we're spotlighting Anahid Modrek, who joined the Cambridge Coaching team in New York in 2014 as an applications coach and subject test tutor. Anahid has worked with students of all ages, and loves working with them one-on-one. Find out what GRE coaching approaches she uses with her students! What’s helpful about working with a private ...
GRE Coaching Approaches in Boston with Weike
This week we're spotlighting Weike, who joined the Cambridge Coaching team in 2012 as an MCAT, GMAT, and GRE coach and subject test tutor in the sciences. Weike emphasizes the understanding of concepts over rote memorization, which results in her students grasping concepts that they formerly thought were out of their reach.  Weike has tons of ...
GRE Coaching Approaches in New York with Helena
This week we're spotlighting Helena, who joined the Cambridge Coaching team in 2014.  Helena is a great believer in individualized study, and since 2005 has helped countless students from middle school to graduate school with their academic goals, standardized test preparation, and college and graduate school admissions processes.  Find out what ...
GRE Coaching Approaches with Sam
This week we're spotlighting Sam, who joined the Cambridge Coaching team in 2010 as an application coach and English tutor.  Since joining our team, Sam's clients have consistenly been accepted to top tier schools like Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Stanford, Duke, Harvard Kennedy School, and many more. With over a decade of tutoring experience, Sam is ...
GRE Coaching Approaches in Boston with Chris
This week we're spotlighting Chris, who joined the Cambridge Coaching team in 2014 as an applications coach and subject test tutor in the humanities. Chris is charming and bright, and with nearly perfect scores on the GRE, he's sure to give great advice on GRE coaching approaches!
The GRE Tutor: Mac and his Tutoring Approaches
  Meet Mac Staben!  GRE Tutor at Cambridge Coaching since 2012. Thanks to Mac's wide range of interests, Mac has had a variety of teaching experiences ranging from history to the sciences, and exams like the SAT, the MCAT, and of course, the GRE.  He's great at using memorable analogies to make dificult topics accessible, and he loves ...
What GMAT/GRE Tutors Talk About on Dates
Teachers in love. I had been corresponding with Ty, an architect and math tutor based in Virginia, for a few months before we decided to meet up. Over the week he spent in New York, we had what resembled a single long conversation that digressed into philosophy, artificial intelligence, theory of mind, and, since we are both educators, ...
What are heuristics? Representative vs. availability heuristics
One topic that many of my psychology tutoring students get confused about is the topic of heuristics, which comes up when they study judgment and decision-making.
The GRE tutor: how to prep for the GRE at the last minute
In a perfect world, we would all budget our time flawlessly. We’d have advance warning of our own needs, desires, and priorities. All large events would be slated into our calendars well in advance and in time slots when we had the brain-space and free time to give such events the focus they demand.
A secret weapon for learning vocab
As an SAT and GRE verbal tutor in Boston, one of the hardest parts of my job has been to help my students improve on the vocabulary section of the GRE or the SAT. We can talk through how to solve a math problem or figure out the main point of a passage, but I’ve always thought of Vocabulary as a skill that has to be acquired by reading books and ...
The GRE Tutor: Not as Easy as You Thought
If it looks like a trap, IT’S A TRAP. Many of us—even some private GRE tutors —take the GRE specifically because we excel in an English-language based field, and we’re going on to graduate work in this field because we gained this mastery in our work with or on the English language at the undergraduate level. We remember the Verbal SAT, perhaps ...
The GRE Tutor: What Happens When a Tutor Takes the Test?
Want to do well on the GRE? Rock your body as if Backstreet were back.  A few weeks ago, I very suddenly made the decision to apply to graduate school. The swiftness of my decision surprised me, but not as much as my realization that because I was about to leave the country, I had exactly three days to prepare for the GRE. I was pretty cocky, ...
The GRE Tutor: How Rusty Test-Takers Can Combat Test Anxiety
 Here to provide you with some moral support. You thought you were done with standardized tests, didn’t you? All the bubbling in answers and test anxiety and number 2 pencils and process of eliminations was behind you, a thing of the past, never to rise again. But then, you learn, no. Standardized testing has risen out of your high school past ...
GRE Verbal Tutor: No Sweat Study Habits for Busy People
When it's finally time to play ball, you'll be a pro. The worst part of studying for any standardized test is the feeling that you’re wasting your time – learning new tasks or developing new skills, like how to spot litotes, that you think you’ll never call on again.  As a private GRE verbal tutor in New York, I’ve had the best luck with students ...
GRE/SAT Tutor: How to Use Rubrics to Hack the Writing Section
It is possible that I might have one or two of these in my back pocket..... I have a secret for you, from my years of experience as a SAT verbal tutor in Boston. Lean close, and don't let the teachers and graders know that I'm going to tell you. Here it is: you have access to a key that will grant you an A on every written assignment. It’s a ...
Get the Ball Rolling this Summer for Standardized Test Prep
With summer just beginning, the last thing on most students’ minds will be starting a new academic program – but I promise that this can be the best time of year to get gears turning and to take control of the standardized tests that loom in the autumn. 
Ready to Do Some Standardized Test Preparation Over the Holidays?
While holidays are certainly a time for most of us to wind down from a busy work or school year and spend time with family and friends, the holidays can also be the best time to complete some standardized test preparation.  With the right discipline and schedule, the focused student can find a way to knock out a couple of good hours of test ...
Building Vocabulary for Test Preparation
As a veteran tutor for test prep in New York, one of the biggest problems students have  – whether it’s for PSAT, SAT, or GRE – is in increasing their vocabulary.  When you do it right, this knowledge can help with every single section of the verbal and critical reading components of these tests.  But when left to the last minute, students are ...
Standardized Test Preparation as a Conduit to Enhanced Metacognition
What is metacognition you may say (unless you have been exposed to the growing literature and popularity of this word in recent years)?  Metacognition, at its most basic can be described as knowing how you think. 
The Importance of Taking It Easy: Sitting for a Standardized Test
Lost in the whirlwind of test-taking strategies and practice problems that make up the bulk of test prep is the simple fact that there is an immense psychological component to any test as critical as the SAT, GMAT, GRE, LSAT, or MCAT.
Learning to Love Standardized Tests: Preparing for Test Day
Lost in the whirlwind of test-taking strategies and practice problems that make up the bulk of test prep is the simple fact that there is an immense psychological component to any test as critical as the SAT, GMAT, GRE, LSAT, or MCAT.
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