on January 25, 2004
The GRE folks now provide practice computer GRE tests for free via their website - [...] com. As such, don't purchase this book if you only want the computer tests.
on August 13, 2003
This book included several practice tests, which are actual tests that were given years ago. The only problem, is that most of the information, and some of the practice tests are exactly the same as what I had already read or done for free online at the GRE website. There is only one practice test that provides explanations with the answers, but this test is also available online for free. Overall, I would not have bought this book had I known that most of the material was exactly what I had already seen, for free.
on July 13, 2011
I planned to take the GRE in June so I bought this book and studied for a week beforehand. I got way below what I was aiming for. This book inflates your confidence and you will be shocked come GRE time because the CAT system makes the test much harder than portrayed in the book. Questions are ridiculously easy and you will NOT be prepared when you have to write the real GRE.
So I paid another $200 to retake it so I could redeem myself. I bought the Kaplan Advanced Math GRE book and my friend gave me a list of Kaplan/Barron's most common GRE words. I went through the whole Advanced Math book (it actually has many mistakes, watch out...), memorized ~300 words in the 5 days before my second attempt, did a practice test off the POWERPREP software, and scored 800Q 630V (this is pretty good, in the 94th and 90th percentile respectively).
Moral of the story: This book will fail you. Don't buy it. Better to use the POWERPREP software that they offer instead (won't work on Windows 7) because it's actually CAT, that test emulates the test situation perfectly. Also, get another book to go through problems. Kaplan's Advanced Math book works well, though you have to be able to notice mistakes to use it effectively.
on September 6, 2003
In my opinion, the title is a misnomer and the book is a lemon, a disappointment and a surprisingly ugly experience.
At first, I expected good quality from this 10th edition book which is published by ETS, a relatively well known organization for testing services and products. I thought that this book would be genuine and able to provide real help to potential examinee. The tidy covering and the unqualified claim "We prepare the Tests - Let us Help Prepare You!" is straight forward and I ordered the book without much hesitation.
When I got this book and looked into it, it was a surprising and disgruntled drama ready to be unfolded. The practice exams are way back in late 80¡¦s and very early 90¡¦s and it seems like there has been significant changes since the old days. Full explanation is only provided for one out of a total of seven practice tests. The quality of some questions is really below average and numerous answers are questionable. The analytical section only provides brief commentary for the issue and argument essays and the additional material given almost at the end of the book is incomplete. I felt that this book does undermine the impression on the actual test significantly and should be brought back to ETS for an extensive overhaul. It is obvious that the whole book was casually pieced together in a big rush to get a quick reap out of the market. The Powerprep software downloadable from ETS website does a better job to give potential examinee a holistic view of the exam and the practice questions are quite useful.
Overall, looking back and it was one disappointing experience after another. It is definitely not worth the price and there is much better material in the market.
on March 19, 2003
This book is written by ETS which provide the GRE test service. The merit of this book is these: first, this book offers the official guidelines of the test. And that line is informative and helpful to test-takers. For example, you can figure out what scope the math section would deal with. And that this book not only show you the scope of section, but explains how to solve the questions in succinct way. Second, as the title says, this book has 8 real tests ETS made. Though ETS offers PowerPrep software for free to practice and get familiar to the test, current 3.0 version has not much tests. With this book, you could get more material to practice. And better, they explain why the question should have this kind of answers in detail. With that explanation, you could catch the knack how to approach the questions.
But this book has the weaknesses like these: first, those real test this book offers are outdated. They provides tests held in the late 80s and the early 90s. But current CBT test are somewhat different from those tests. Current tests are much easier. Second, there is no guide to what kind of words is tested in the exam at all. Guidelines are no more than official on that matter. And those guidelines could be downloaded from ETS site for free. Then the only point to buy this book is the 8 real tests. It¡¯s up to you whether to buy this book. But in my opinion, if you take the test score seriously, you¡¯d better practice those real tests.
on February 26, 2003
I was extremely disappointed with this book. It claims that it will prepare you well for the actual GRE, but in reality, it just wastes valuable time that you could have spent with another study guide.
In general, the book does not offer helpful hints on how to actually write the different sections. Instead, it just provides answers, and (for only one sample test in each section) explanations for each. The quantitative section was extremely easy compared to the one I saw on the CBT, and there was no instruction regarding the verbal and analytical sections. To be fair, though, the quantitative section did include a general math overview, which was somewhat (but not very) helpful.
Overall, this book was mainly a collection of practice tests (some from the late 80s?!?!)... If this is what you're looking for, great! BUT, I would recommend that GRE test takers spend time with a more well-rounded book (there are many out there), and DEFINITELY work through the POWERPREP program. Good Luck!
on October 2, 2002
So, you want to take the GRE. You think to yourself "Gee, I should take a lot of practice tests", so now you want to buy this book. Well, it's somewhat helpful, but you'll find that the real test, taken on the computer, feels much different.
I had much more trouble finishing on time for the real test than I did in these practice tests- particularly for the analytical section. The questions on the real test seemed harder than these practice tests. All my friends who have recently taken the GREs and studied with practice tests agree with that, so it's not just me. You also cant go backwards, look ahead, omit questions, or sketch notes on the paper [i usually like to draw on the diagram in the math section]
Rather than paying money for this book, just go download ETS's powerprep software. It's free, and it has two practice tests exactly the way you'll see them when you take it for real. Take one test, identify your weakness, study that part, take the other practice test, and then you're ready. Besides, the GRE is so similar to the SAT, you dont need to study too much for it.
In short, dont treat this as a collection of practice tests, but treat it as a collection of practice problems, and that makes it less helpful for test preparation.
on August 21, 2002
This book takes very straightforward approach. It explains what the test is looking for in the verbal area. It gives a review of that math used on the math portion. After that it's just tests and answers. For the student who is disciplined enough to take about 30 hours of study time taking the practice tests and evaluating their errors, this book is probably very helpful.
The free practice software that ETS sends probably would have been more help to me because my main difficulty was with the computerized format-the fact that I couldn't go back and change my answers. On previous standardized tests I've taken, the questions get progressively harder. It gets my mind ready for the more challenging questions and gives me a sense of security being certain that I got at least some questions correct. With the computer format, it gives you harder questions straightaway until you miss one. This heightens the anxiety of taking the test immensely for me. When I see an easy one I think, "Oh no. What should have been the correct answer on the last problem!?" This is purely counterproductive, especially on a time-limited test like the GRE.
I urge other students to sign up long in advance so that you have time to practice with the software. It took a month for my free ETS software to arrive. It arrived after I had taken the test. No matter how familiar you are with computers (I've been an electrical engineer for five years.), if you haven't taken a computerized standardized test, you need the software.
If you're willing to devote a lot of time to taking practice tests, this book will help. Otherwise, it is a waste of money.
on July 6, 2002
The price of this book is low enough that you can afford a shot at written versus software-based tests. While I prefer software tests, this book will test your patience as well as your proficiency. I also give this three stars because it is really a predictor of performance, not a real practice, complete with diagnostics to show your weak areas. But, I'll bet you probably know your weak areas already (ie, vocabulary, logic, math, etc.) But you will need other tools to polish those skills.
I took the practice tests in the book again just to see if I retained any of the stuff I did in college. Hahahaha! Blushes all around. Well, with age comes wisdom, if a loss of some factual memory. I took the GRE's for real years ago and got good enough scores to get into the grad schools I wanted. Which brings me to the real point; it's actually easy to get into grad school. It's harder to get OUT of grad school, once you are in.
Still, if you are on a student budget and can't afford more expensive books, classes or software quizzes, this is a fine way to practice. And the more practice, the more comfortable you will be during test time. Also, I have a theory that if you are taking a written test, you should practice in writing as well as online. The look and feel of the written page will make you smoother and less nervous come test day. Good luck!
on December 30, 2001
Since I was studying for the GRE on a shoestring budget, I skipped the expensive test prep courses and bought this book, along with 2 others, to help me prep for the test. My initial concern when I ordered this book was that it wouldn't be able to accurately predict what kind of score I would get on the computer based test, since the entire book is (obviously) full of paper based tests which are set up in a totally different format than the CAT. Yup, I was pretty skeptical of ETS's claims that scores on the paper test should correlate with those of the CAT.
When I finally took the GRE, I was surprised to find that my scores on the CAT were pretty close to how I had scored on the practice tests in this book. (within about a 30 point margin - the only exception was my quantitative score which was about 70 points higher on the CAT... still fairly close, though)
I would recommend this book for people who are studying for the GRE themselves (without the help of prep courses) and would like to get an idea of how they might score. (Having some idea of how I might do made me less nervous about taking the real test.)
Be warned though, that the soul purpose of this book is to give an indication of your possible performance: it won't help you pinpoint where your weaknesses are or give you lists of vocab words, practice problems, etc. It is simply a book of practice tests. Be sure to buy a few other books which can isolate your weaknesses and provide practice problems on the sections you need the most help with.