GRE® – FAQ’s

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Thoughts from Dr.Prasad Raju Pathapati, (Director)

Q. How important are my GRE® scores?

Schools vary tremendously in the weights they place on the different factors in the admission process. So be sure to contact  the specific schools to which you are applying in order to determine their unique requirements. Some programs weigh GRE® scores very heavily, and/or have a minimum score for applicants, while other programs consider GRE® scores more of a formality. It is important to note that your GRE® scores are a major factor in determining your eligibility for financial aid.

Without GRE® there is no financial aid.

Note: In 80 % of the US Universities GRE® score is given 50 % weightage. Rest of the 50 % is given to your degree academic percentage, TOEFL® score, Projects, Work Experience, Statement of Purpose (SOP), Recommendations Letters from your professors (RECOs), and Extracurricular & Co-curricular activities.

Q. How important are my GRE® AWA scores?

Strong GRE® AWA scores are required for top range schools. For most of the top schools the minimum AWA requirement is 4.00/6.00. But 80% of the US schools consider your Quant and Verbal scores. Nevertheless, if you are aiming for top schools any score above 4.5 would be adequate. The average Indian AWA score is 3.00/6.00. (3.00 and above is safe for visa).

Q. How many times should I take the GRE®?

Most people are better off preparing thoroughly for the test, taking it one time and getting their top score. You may take the test as often as you like, and according to recent changes, you can report only the best of your anyone score (in New Pattern) to the schools you are applying. If you know you did poorly, you have the option of canceling the test immediately after completing it, and graduate schools will not know about your score.

Students typically raise their score when they retake the test. Students who raise their score the most tend to be students with high GPA’s who scored poorly on the GRE® nonetheless. Students who made glaring errors on test day, such as running out of time, will also tend to perform better in their second attempt.

Note: You can take GRE® as many times as you want. However, in a consecutive twelve months, the maximum time is five.

In a calendar month you are allowed to take only once.
Even if you applied with your average scores to schools initially, by sending new and improved scores you can better your chances for both admission and in visa too. Send institutions the scores that reflect your personal best.

Even if you scored poorly initially, take some time to take the test again and try to get above 300 (150 minimum in each section both Verbal and Quants) and 3.0 in AWA as good scores above 300 are becoming a standard for issuing visa. I strongly advise you to better your chances for visa.

Q. How many years is the GRE® score valid?

Typically your score will last 5 years.

Q. How the registration for test is done? What is cost of registration?

Check Dr.Raju’s YouTube video links provided here in GRE® Section.

Q. What is the difference between GRE® and GMAT®?

Initially, GRE® is for graduate schools in science and the GMAT® is for business school. In recent years, many MBA/PhD programs in business accept both GRE® and GMAT® score. For most MBA programs, GRE® is now acceptable. To know more details about the business schools accepting the GRE® scores, visit ETS® GRE® website.

Q. When should one take up the GRE®?

If you are applying for the Fall Semester (Aug-Sep-2013) , it would be ideal if you have your GRE® score latest by September end of the previous year. The TOEFL® can be taken sometime after the GRE® (say, October) so that by November, all the scores and the selection of Universities can be made. If you are applying for the Spring Semester (Feb), it would be ideal to have your GRE® score by March of the previous year.

Note: Many Indian students fall into average category. If you are aiming for top ranking schools the above dates are applicable. But for 80 % of the schools in US the deadline is Jan 15thfor fall admission with financial aid. In these cases one has to complete both GRE and TOEFL before the end of December for fall admission. The following information gives an idea about when to take GRE® & TOEFL® exams for FALL (Aug-Sept) admissions:

Top Schools (Like MIT, STANFORD, University Of California Berkeley Etc.,) : Before Nov 1st  & Dec 1st
Very Good Schools ( Like Penn State, Carnegie Mellon, University Of Southern California) ; Before Jan 15th
Good Schools Such As University Of Connecticut, University Of Alabama : Before Feb 1st
Average Schools Such As Louisiana, Mississippi , UMIS : Before April 1st
Medium Range State Schools Such As Mcneese, Arkansas Tech : Before May 1st
Low Ranked Private Schools Such As University Of Bridgeport, University Of New Heaven, NYIT, Oklahoma City, Findlay – Before June 15th

Q. What is the preparatory material required for GRE®?

Dr. Raju’s GRE Coaching Material :

Dr Raju’s GRE® Exclusive Quant Material ( Unparalleled  material in the world)
+ Supplementary Material

Dr Raju’s GRE® Work Books for Verbal ( RC+TC+SE+CR+AWA)
Dr Raju’s GRE® Exclusive Verbal Word List
Dr Raju’s GRE® Exclusive 25 Sessions ( Unparalleled type of teaching material in the world)
Dr Raju’s GRE® Quant Solution Book

Additional Preparatory Material is available in the market :

ETS® Official GRE® Guide (100 % portion is covered in the class room)
Barron’s GRE® (No wordlist-in new Book)
KAPLAN GRE®
Princeton Review GRE

GRE Test CDs :

Power Prep® ETS® GRE® CD… Ultimate reflection of your original score.
Kaplan GRE® CD, Barron’s GRE® CD. Princeton Review CD Etc.

Q. I have got very high GRE® score (beyond 1400 GRE®). Can I get admission in top range schools like MIT, TAMU?

For top range Universities GRE® is one of the many parameters. They consider sum of all parts rather than individual components. They consider a student’s credentials in a “holistic approach”

Undergraduate GPA
SOP
RECO letters
Research Publications
Work experience
Resume
Undergraduate education (IIT, BITS Pilani, NIT Etc.,)
GRE® AWA score besides Quant &Verbal and
TOEFL®.

It does not mean that you cannot apply to these Universities. We have successful admissions from Carnegie Mellon, University of Pennsylvania , Ohio State University, PENN State University , and Georgia Tech even for JNTU & JNTU Affiliated and other affiliated University students as well. It is our endeavor to guide you to the best possible University within the limited constraints of students profile.
Contact our Consulting Division to know more details.

Q. I have a low GRE® Score (800-1000/1600 in old GRE scale) ? Can you get admission for me in state/public  universities?

Yes ! There are several public/state Universities in US where GRE® is of minor importance. The cost of studying in these Universities varies from Rs 6 lakhs to Rs 10 lakhs for your entire MS. Instead of applying to commission based Universities such as University of Bridgeport, Oklahoma City University, NYIT, NJIT, University of Detroit-Mercy, Farleigh Dickenson University etc., one can opt for these Universities for their affordable cost and quality of education. These commission based universities have links with many consultants in India . If a student gets admitted to these Universities these Indian consultants get 10 % of the Tuition Fees and or Application Fees paid by student as commission from the respective University. That’s why many Indian Consultants make sure that their clients will apply to those universities only.

Q. I have No GRE®, No TOEFL®. Can I get an admission in US University?

Yes ! There are low ranked Private Universities in US such as Northwest Polytechnic, National University, Silicon Valley, Concordia University which offer admission without GRE® & TOEFL®. But Visa success rate for these Universities is pretty low. Even if you are successful in VISA interview somehow, after reaching US you will have to register for additional English exams at a cost of 1500 to 2500 USD.

Q. I have less than 60% in degree and have many backlogs; will I get admission in state university system in US ?

Yes! We have tremendous success with these profiles. There are several state Universities that accept backlogs. The main strength at our admission counseling is securing an admission in state universities with mediocre GRE® & low academics.

Q. Can I get financial aid?

The fact is that financial aid is granted by US universities based on your strength of attributes. Some universities consider High GRE® score. Some Universities consider relevant research publications. Some Universities consider strong academic background and the profile of your undergraduate academic Institute. We at Dr Raju’s weigh all these parameters and try to secure admission in state universities where financial aid is granted liberally to MS students. (Consult Dr.Raju’s Consulting Division for further details)

PhD students are fully funded. Top universities, where terminal degree is PhD, award financial assistant-ship to only PhD students and Universities, where the terminal degree is MS, award funding to MS applicants.

Note: Some universities to attract students such as University of Missouri, Kansas City, Polytechnic University offer scholarships that waive a part of your tuition fee. Beware of the Universities and Consultants that promise Scholarships and funding for every applicant. The hidden cost of MS will be abnormal.

In general, if one opts for a state university where not many Indians are clogging the funding are awarded after you reach US either in the first semester or in the second. These things could happen when you maintain your grades and proximity to the Professors.

Q. Can I get funding only with TOEFL®, with or without GRE®?

False! Many consultants trap you with this wrong notion.  Most of the scholarships and financial aid is based on GRE® and academics. If they are supported with good TOEFL® (>100) one may be considered for Teaching Assistantship.

Q. What is the real meaning of funding?

To attract the brilliant students US universities fund the students in following four forms:

Scholarships /Fellowships (One need not work while studying).

GA (Graduate Assistant) is given by graduate schools . Here, for example, a Mechanical Engineering student may work in International office without any connection to one’s department)

TA (Teaching Assistant) is given by your specific department where sometimes you are required to work in a lab,  grade the students test papers and sometimes you have to engage class work for the undergrad students)

RA (Research Assistant) is given by a professor. Here you got to help the professor in sponsored research projects and work as a co-author in his publications in research journals.

GA/ TA/RA could be full time or Part time. Full time means one has to work for 20 Hrs a week and Part Time means 10 Hrs a week.

In many schools the funding means that the  respective school is going to waive your entire tuition fee (sometimes part of it), provide free health insurance beside providing some money ( 500 USD to 1000 USD) for your living expenses. Most of the time you can earn your degree absolutely at free of cost with high quality living.

Meet our Counselors today to know more about your prospects in funding.