Newbie here who knows nothing about GRE prep...

Okay, so, I’m planning on enrolling in a graduate program with the final goal of obtaining a Psy. D degree (Doctor of Psychology). Now, from what I’ve gathered from the posts that I’ve read around here, the GRE consists of a quantitative, verbal and writing.

So, my question is: Where do I start preparing for this test? What section should I start with? What materials should I use.

I see that the Big Book comes with great commendations but I’m guessing it’s somewhat dated and does not come with any explanations.

That’s about all that I’ve gathered thus far.

Any help at all would be appreciated. Thank you.

I’m actually planning to get started with preparing this week. Any suggestions?

You don’t need to start with one particular section over another. Doesn’t really matter, unless one is a particular weakness compared to the other. Best way to start is to get an overall review book that describes the GRE inside and out and has strategies for taking the test, along with the fundamentals review. I have Cracking the GRE, from Princeton Review, and I would highly recommend it. It’s an easy read and the tips help a lot. Its tests do have answer explanations, and they group the results by question type. I got a lot out of the book and the tests (get the version with the DVD for the tests; it also has lessons on it).

You’re going to want to study vocab, but unless you’re seriously lacking there, I would not get a massive word list. They’re torture to get through, take you away from general GRE prep, and only a tiny fraction of those words would show up on your GRE. Get a condensed word list. I would recommend Word Smart for the GRE. It includes lessons for learning vocab and some good practice drills. It’s an excellent book.

Of course you should also take the Powerprep tests. Some say they’re a bit easier than the current GRE, but they are the official practice tests so you should still do them.

So, start with the review book, and read it from beginning to end. Do the practice questions as you go. There’s also an official practice guide with practice questions, or you can buy separate verbal and quant workbooks from various test prep companies. Try to do a bunch of practice questions of one type at one sitting to figure out what your strengths and weaknesses are, and to identify your most common mistakes. After every five questions, grade them and read the explanations. You’ll want to correct bad habits before you go too far. Plan to take a practice test each week, and very carefully review your answers.

Hope this gets you started!

Thanks for all the valuable info. I had seen the Cracking the GRE book by Princeton Review mentioned around here a couple times, but I had a bad taste in my mouth for their products after using their Cracking the LSAT book a while back. I found that book to be very limited and lacking in scope. But, I’ll give this one a try.

Now, the official practice guide that you mentioned, is that also by Princeton Review?

Thanks again.

Yeah, I have heard that the LSAT book isn’t good, but it seems to be a fluke. I took the GMAT a few years ago when I was thinking about business school and used their GMAT book, which was great. The GRE book is similar to it, and I remembered a bunch of the strategies when I took my first GRE practice test.

The official guide is from ETS, the brilliant folks who like to torture us with this test!!! You can get info on but it’s probably cheaper on Amazon. I think they’re coming out with a new version, but not til next year.

how did you do on the GMAT…did you go to business school? or were you not accepted? Sorry for probing…it is just i would prefer to go to business school…but they say that you need job experience…and I am having difficulty finding a business that will hire me…I wish i had connections to someone who could give me a job recommendation from within a company…supposedly that counts for a lot…

anyways, now i am considering just entering graduate school in some other scientific field since i have a background in physics as well as finance in my undergradate program.