How to Learn Words for the GRE Exam

The GRE exam is taken by everyone who wants to enter an American university, except for those who apply for law. The exam consists of two main parts: mathematical and verbal. You need to prepare thoroughly, the tasks are difficult even for native English speakers.

The words that are used in the questions for the test are extremely rare in real life. These are words from academic language and from complex linguistic dictionaries. We tell this not to scare you, but to explain how important preparation is. And, of course, we will help you to be on the alert.

How to learn words correctly in order to successfully pass the verbal part.

  1. Read a lot

Yes, we’re going to play Captain Obvious a bit now, but seriously, to know more words, you need to read at least more. To expand the academic vocabulary, it will be more correct to read certain materials with specific vocabulary. List of suitable materials:

  • The New York Times 
  • The Economist
  • National Geographic 
  • The Atlantic 
  • Wall Street Journal 
  1. Love the Dictionary as Your Neighbor

Not the most exciting tip, but what can you do. Get used to looking for words in dictionaries. Don’t think you’ll only get by with the first definition. Gre often tests knowledge of different definitions of a single word, so look at as many meanings of a single word as possible.

  1. Come up with your own meanings of words

But this is a more creative task! Once you have memorized the definitions of a new word in the dictionary, rehash it. It will be much easier for you to remember the meaning of the word if you create it yourself or, rather, retold it in your own way.

For example, benediction = Benedict Cumberbatch addiction 😀

  1. Decide on the words

There are words in the exam that are repeated year after year in the test.

On the Internet, you can find such lists of words. We have prepared those that will really meet you in the test with a probability of 95%.

You no longer need to cut a bunch of paper and write words on one side and their meanings on the other. Now all the necessary flash cards can and should be stored in the smartphone. When you go to the subway, stand in line or wait for your coffee, repeat the words.

GRE Vocabulary Flashcards from Magoosh
Manhattan Review GRE Vocabulary Flashcards
500+ Practice GRE Vocabulary Words

  1. Save words

Store a list of new GRE vocabulary words on your smartphone or notepad. When you write something down on paper, it also makes it easier to remember. Write down a word when you first see it. Better yet, rewrite the sentence in which you originally found the word to remind yourself what that word looks like in context.

  1. Say the word out loud

It helps not only to prescribe a word, but also to pronounce it out loud. At first it may be strange and unusual, but the more interactions with the word, the faster and more effectively you will remember it.

  1. Pay attention to the root

Many words have a common root and by remembering its meaning, you can easily analyze words with a similar root and understand their meaning. For example, the root bon means “good” or useful, with this root the following words occur:

benefit, benefactor, benediction

  1. Use the words you learned

Vocabulary development is a matter of constant practice. Try adding vocabulary from GRE to your speech. Using a new word in writing or in conversation as often as possible helps to remember more easily and retain new information longer.

  1. Remember the vocabulary from the mathematical part

GRE also tests your knowledge of integers, fractions, decimals, and many other terms. It is extremely necessary to know such mathematical vocabulary in order to understand what is expected of you in the task.

Knowing all these terms in English is not easy, look at the selections to cope with the task.

GRE Math 
Glossary of GRE Math Terms
GRE Math Terms

  1. Take mock tests

It is difficult to understand what we are talking about if you do not see everything with your own eyes. If you want to be fully prepared for the exam, take as many mock tests as possible. Pay attention to the types of questions that you will encounter in both, verbal and mathematical, sections. Write down the words or groups of words that occur most often.

GRE_Practice_Test_1
Multiple-choice Questions GRE
Free GRE practice tests 

What recommendations do you find most helpful? Ask all your questions in the comments.

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