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Cordillera
12-27-2006, 07:23 PM
Hi people,

I will prepare again the GRE during this summer and I wish to buy more material. May be the question comes at a wrong time, but I hope you can give me an advice about a good book with a cd, with the focus on the quantitative section. Specifically, what do you think about Barrons (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/customer-reviews/0764178784/ref=cm_cr_dp_2_1/104-3510114-6587946?ie=UTF8&customer-reviews.sort%5Fby=-SubmissionDate&n=283155) for example?

thanks a lot!

abababba
12-27-2006, 07:28 PM
Make sure you take advantage of all the free options. There are like 20 free practice tests in the big book or whatever they talk about on the GRE forum (you can download online, if you go to the forum the tests will be referenced by test and section number so everyone there is taking them). They are previous tests, but the test has somewhat outgrown the practice if you know what I'm saying. There are also some wrong answers in the key so be careful. Make sure you take the two free powerprep tests, but I would in general save those until closer to your test taking time.

For extra CATs use 800score and princeton review.

Other books are all similar and tend to give really dumb practice tests that emphasize the points they are trying to make rather than give you a real sense for the GRE, but if you have time, do more of these as well.

All this is assuming you are still taking a CAT, which I am not sure is true in 2007.

Zoethor2
12-27-2006, 07:33 PM
My advice: get your hands on as many as you can. I practiced with about 4 different "brands" of practice tests, and got HUGELY variant scores depending on which brand I was working with. None of those scores reflected very accurately what I actually got in the end. (All the practice tests underscored me, because I tended to lose points on the "easiest" questions, which I never even saw on the actual GRE.)

I suggest finding some friends who also need to take the GRE and going in together on buying 3-4 different books with tests.

Of course, isn't the GRE changing this coming fall anyway? So I'm not sure what sort of impact that will have on test prep.

The one thing I will say is that I was preparing with a book that had, I think, 35 math questions in 30 minutes for the quant section. I never read the intro, so I had no idea that the real test had only 25 or whatever it is. Either way, prepping with MORE questions in the same time made the test itself a lot less stressful. (And was a pleasant surprise on test day. :))

Cordillera
12-27-2006, 07:57 PM
thanks abababba! yeah, I'm thinking on taking the test before next March, and I recently noticed that the CAT will be running on September. But thanks for your warning because I didn´t realize so far that there will be a change in the test...
So, do you think that 800score and princeton review give better practice than Barron´s? I´ll also check the free options!

shootermcgavin7
12-27-2006, 08:06 PM
I thought the practice tests for Barron's were closer to the actual types of questions I saw on the GRE than some of the other companies' practice materials.

Cordillera
12-27-2006, 08:16 PM
thank you, Zoethor2!
My problem is mainly with difficult questions. I took the test twice and I always got stuck in a complex question (I think that it's the second or the third), becoming very nervous for the rest of the time. So, I couldnīt get more of a 760 in the quantitative section. I think that dealing with nerves will be my main challenge!

Cordillera
12-27-2006, 08:27 PM
I thought the practice tests for Barron's were closer to the actual types of questions I saw on the GRE than some of the other companies' practice materials.
Does anybody else heard the same as shootermcgavin7 (http://www.urch.com/forums/members/shootermcgavin7.html)?

nasshi
12-27-2006, 09:31 PM
how moot are the current responses, given that the GRE is changing next fall?

i have no idea the degree to which the test is changing, but i know they're incorporating new sections.

Antichron
12-27-2006, 09:32 PM
If you live near a bookstore, you can take the "poor man's" approach that I took last year to studying for the GRE. I would go to the bookstore about four times a week and do a couple practice tests each time (on scratch paper, of course!). This way, you can experience a much more diverse sample of GRE questions.

Also, don't forget that on the actual GRE, you can miss a couple questions and still get an 800. On the practice GREs on paper, if you miss one question, I think you are automatically down to 780 or 760.

There is a good amount of free material available from the GRE website at (www.gre.org/pracmats.html (http://www.gre.org/pracmats.html)).

daageep
12-28-2006, 02:15 AM
practice is necessary but not sufficient. i think you really, really need to understand very thoroughly all the questions you are doing, and how to manipulate any question in any "new" way. like instead just knowing the formula for standard deviation, what happens if i threw in a smiley face into the dataset? (probably a bad example but you know what I mean).

If you have to use practice materials, the best predictor (in my case) was the powerprep exam by ETS. you can download it on their website. the questions won't necessarily be the same, but the scoring algorithm is close to the real one.

lirac
12-28-2006, 02:35 PM
My advice: get your hands on as many as you can. I practiced with about 4 different "brands" of practice tests, and got HUGELY variant scores depending on which brand I was working with. None of those scores reflected very accurately what I actually got in the end. (All the practice tests underscored me, because I tended to lose points on the "easiest" questions, which I never even saw on the actual GRE.)



FWIW, I took the GRE in August 2005 and I thought it was very different from my practice tests (including the two computer ones they send you). Specifically,
1) The math questions were much harder. I finished my math practice tests with a lot of time remaining but unexpectedly ran out of time at the very end on the real thing. However, they scale it nicely.
2) Verbal didn't seem harder, but I scored about 70 points lower than I did on my practice tests. Not that any of us care about verbal, but thought I'd mention it.

abababba
12-28-2006, 03:22 PM
My scores on the two practice tests they gave me were exactly equal to the score I eventually got on the quantitative section. It was within 10 points on the verbal. The quant was harder on the actual test day but the scoring is quality on those practice tests, at least in my small sample size.

ysbad
12-29-2006, 08:06 AM
I studied like a madman for the GRE (over 1 hour a day for four months) and used every test prep source I could find spending lots of money, I think I took over 100 full practice tests. I would have to say that you should put in as much time as possible and do as many practice tests as possible. When I started I sucked at the math section getting 600's, but on test day I was able to pull an 800Q/750V/6.0A, and I am NOT smart, I attribute it completely to practice and training. As stated previously you should use the free materials, but use ETS stuff including powerprep as your primary source of reference, I saved it for the three weeks before the test. As far as other materials I would rate Barron's as the best with Kaplan's and Princeton Review about the same. I loved a book called "Math for Smart Test Takers", even though it averages about two errors per page, the questions are very rigorous and it gives you the quick thinking skills you need (and a few of the practice questions ended up almost verbatim on the real GRE). I didn't like any of the other test materials very much. If you have the time and money use everything, saving the best for last and taking as many full practice tests as possible (try one a day for 3 months). If you don't have time and money go to official ETS stuff and Barron's.

Cordillera
12-29-2006, 02:39 PM
thanks, everybody!
the first time I took the test was in August, the second in November, studying for almost four months altogether (with some interruptions). These holidays I hope to be able to follow a more continuous pace of study. But anyway, I reviewed a lot of material, I thougth that I had a deep insight in the type of exercises that could appear in the math section and I scored 800 in many of my last practise tests. However, at the time of the real test (the second), I performed very poorly in math in comparison to what I had expected (on the contrary, I became quite surprised with the results in verbal section). So, now I am a bit disappointed and I donīt know if what I need really is much more hard practise or, instead, to develope some kind of technique or strategy to keep stress under control!
Well, thanks anyway to everybody... I will take into account your advices and check which extra material is available!

illiniguy
01-07-2007, 05:01 AM
For me, the GRE is ~70% practice, 30% innate intelligence, whatever that is. Just practice a ton. I borrowed books from the local city library, used books at the university library, used the GRE Pwerprep software, and bought the Barron's book.

I reccomend the barron's, you get 5 practices compared to kaplan with only 1. THe CD with Barron's was good too.

Yeah just practice a lot and you can get an 800. You might want to take it twice, because a lot of people I've talked to (and me included) don't do as well the first time, because of stress, unfamiliar surroundings etc.

user_name
01-07-2007, 05:54 AM
I studied like a madman for the GRE (over 1 hour a day for four months) and used every test prep source I could find spending lots of money, I think I took over 100 full practice tests.
:eek::crazy: