Preparation for GRE is no joke. The verbal section mainly takes an effort to go through. Unlike GMAT verbal, GRE focuses on analytical skills regarding written material. Therefore, even without an entire command of the language, you can perform well in GRE Verbal Reasoning. According to many test-takes, the verbal section of the GRE is considered the challenging section in the GRE. It may not seem ideal, but GRE verbal is more demanding than GMAT verbal. So how to proceed with that?

GRE Verbal Section

The Verbal Reasoning measure of the GRE® General Test assesses your ability to analyze and evaluate written material, synthesize information obtained from it, analyze relationships among parts of sentences, and recognize relationships among words and concepts. There are three types of questions in GRE Verbal reasoning:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Text Completion
  • Sentence Equivalence

You need to complete two tasks in the GRE Verbal Reasoning section. First, you need to read passages and answer questions on those passages. Then, the second half requires you to read, interpret and complete existing sentences, groups of sentences or paragraphs. It seems easy, right? It may seem simple and easy, but there is much more to understand.

Tips to Prepare for GRE Verbal Reasoning

GRE Verbal assesses your high-level reading and language skills. Based on the context, you must interpret the valuable data from complex content. It requires extensive focus and analytical skills to go through the GRE Verbal Section. The questions are divided into several categories, and hence not ideal to follow a straight course of action for every question. Here are a few tips to keep in mind while preparing for GRE Verbal:

Plan Accordance to Structure

The section contains a total of 40 questions. These 40 questions are divided into two sub-sections. The section is scored on a 130-170, with one-point increments. The scoring method may not be a big concern. However, it is essential to plan a strategy for both sub-sections. Among the 20 questions, 10 are vocabulary questions. The other 10 are reading comprehension-based (multiple-choice, multi-answer multiple-choice and select-in-passage questions). Prepare while considering different types of questions and their requirements.

Include Variety into Preparation

Students often get frustrated by complex passages in the GRE verbal section. The reason is the lack of variety in preparation strategy. It should not surprise that variety in your preparation is an absolute necessity for the GRE verbal section. Try including content from different sources and read carefully. The passages in GRE verbal are not as complex as it seems. It only needs a better POV to understand and comprehend. If you are not familiar with the content style, answering questions will be challenging.

Consistency is Important

One of the significant issues of the GRE, especially GRE Verbal, is running out of time. And it is not likely to pace through the section to save up some time. You can easily make tons of mistakes doing so. To avoid such calamity, plan your time in your preparation. The consistency in your timing is a significant issue. Also, try to focus on more relevant questions before the rest. Do not worry; experts recommend leaving tough questions for later in exams like GMAT and GRE. GRE verbal will assess you on the different question-based extent. Make sure to plan accordingly.

GRE Official Material

The best possible way to prepare for GRE Verbal is to select GRE official materials. There are thousands of study materials that can cost you valuable time and provide little to nothing in the end. Through ETS official connections, you can obtain GRE official materials that are the most relevant and similar experience to the GRE test exam. Also, you can get additional practice-based questions to prepare even further. Using official materials is also a great choice as it will be the closest guide to your exam.

Strength Over Weakness

English is a language that comes with time to comprehend and learn. Unlike mathematics, statistics or science, you can not perform well by preparing hardcore in a small session. Experts and test makers always recommend incremental learning for GRE and GMAT. Work on your vital aspects rather than trying to develop new skills. The verbal section, in particular, will assess your comprehension and ability to analyze and evaluate. Rather than strengthening your weaker aspects, work on your more substantial aspects.


The GRE verbal section is all about your comprehension and analytical skills. Therefore, it is best to prepare with a lot of content rather than spending a lot of time on it. To score a quality mark in GRE verbal, you need to prepare according to exam context. Use official materials and mock tests to adapt and learn.

Author Bio:

Abhyank Srinet is a passionate digital entrepreneur who holds a Masters in Management degree from ESCP Europe. He started his first company while he was still studying at ESCP, and managed to scale it up by 400% in just 2 years. 

Being a B-School Alumni, he recognized the need for a one-stop solution for B-School to get in touch with schools and get their application queries resolved. This prompted him to create Mentr Me, a one-of-a-kind portal with cutting-edge profile evaluation and school selection algorithms, along with several avenues to stay informed about the latest B-School Updates.


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