How Long Does the GRE Take?

The GRE, also known as the Graduate Record Examination, is a standardized test used for admission into graduate-level programs in the United States and other countries. The test measures skills in quantitative reasoning, verbal reasoning, critical thinking, and analytical writing. Many students who are planning on taking the GRE are often curious about how long the test takes. In this post, we will explore the different components of the GRE and how long each section takes.

Firstly, let’s take a look at the overall time allocation for the GRE test. The computer-based GRE exam takes approximately three hours and forty-five minutes to complete, including breaks. The test is divided into six different sections that are meant to measure your aptitude in various areas. These sections include Analytical Writing, Verbal Reasoning, and Quantitative Reasoning. Additionally, there is an unscored research section, a break, and an optional experimental section.

The Analytical Writing section of the GRE comprises two tasks totaling 60 minutes. For each task, you will be given thirty minutes to write a response. The first task is an “Analyze an Issue” essay, where you will be required to take a position on a particular issue and discuss it with relevant evidence. The second task is an “Analyze an Argument” essay, where you will need to evaluate an argument and explain why it is flawed or valid.

The Verbal Reasoning section contains two 35-minute sections, each containing 20 questions. This section assesses your understanding of written material, vocabulary, and your ability to analyze and examine written data. You will be tested on your ability to read comprehension, sentence equivalence, and text completion.

The Quantitative Reasoning section is made up of two 35-minute sections, each containing 20 questions. You will be examined on your problem-solving and quantitative reasoning skills. The topics covered in this section include algebra, arithmetic, geometry, and data analysis.

The fourth section of the GRE is the research section, which is unscored and usually takes around 30 minutes. This section can come before or after any other scored sections and is used for research and development purposes to improve future test questions.

Next, we have the optional experimental section. This section can either be a Verbal Reasoning or a Quantitative Reasoning section and also lasts around 30 minutes. The experimental section is only optional because it is used to test new questions to potentially appear on future tests. It is not scored and the student won’t know which section was experimental.

Finally, there are two breaks throughout the GRE exam, one of 10 minutes and another of 1 minute. Test-takers are allowed to take the breaks or skip them if they wish to continue with the next section.

In conclusion, the GRE exam takes approximately three hours and forty-five minutes to complete, including breaks. The test comprises six different sections that measure your critical thinking and analytical abilities in various areas. The Analytical Writing section contains two tasks of thirty minutes each. Each verbal and quantitative reasoning section contains twenty questions and lasts thirty-five minutes. The research section is unscored, lasts 30 minutes, and is used for research and development purposes. Finally, the optional experimental section can be either a verbal or quantitative reasoning section and lasts 30 minutes.

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