GRE sample papers to ace the exam

By Edvoy• Last updated: Jun 28, 2023
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GRE Exam sample papers are effective tools to help applicants prepare for the exam. With a variety of verbal, quantitative, and data analysis questions, these papers provide an interactive way to review concepts, practice test-taking strategies, and become familiar with the exam format.

In this guide, we will list the different sections of the GRE and sample questions from each section.

What is GRE?

The GRE (Graduate Record Examination) is a standardised test administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). It is used to measure a student’s aptitude and readiness for graduate-level studies. The exam has three sections:

  • Verbal Reasoning Section
  • Quantitative Reasoning Section
  • Analytical Writing Section
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Verbal reasoning section

Verbal Reasoning measures a test taker's ability to analyse and draw conclusions from discourse; understand multiple levels of meaning; identify relationships among words and concepts; and reason with words in unfamiliar contexts. It includes two types of questions: text completion and reading comprehension. Text completion questions require the test taker to fill in one or more missing words in a passage. Reading comprehension questions are designed to measure the ability to read, understand, analyse, evaluate, interpret and synthesise information from various types of passages.

Verbal reasoning sample questions

  1. People who are consistently late tend to be: 
    A) Focused 
    B) Disorganised 
    C) Selfish 
    D) Ambitious
  2. The study of plants is known as:
    A) Botany 
    B) Astronomy 
    C) Anthropology 
    D) Psychology
  3. The word “benevolent” most nearly means:
    A) Wise 
    B) Kind 
    C) Industrious 
    D) Intelligent
  4. If 8x + 4y = 40, then 6x + 3y = ?
    A) 36 
    B) 30 
    C) 24 
    D) 20
  5. Which of the following is an example of a rhetorical device?
    A) Simile 
    B) Irony 
    C) Alliteration 
    D) Synecdoche

Reading comprehension section questions

1. Read the following passage and answer the question that follows:

The Earth's climate has changed significantly throughout its history. Over the last few hundred years, human activity has increased the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, leading to a rise in global temperatures and other climatic changes.

What is the main idea of this passage?

  1. Human activity is causing climate change.
  2. The Earth's climate has always changed.
  3. Greenhouse gases are harmful to the environment.
  4. Climate change will lead to dangerous consequences.

2. Read the following passage and answer the question that follows:

Urban renewal is a process of revitalising an area in a city by demolishing buildings and creating new construction projects. This can include new housing developments, parks and recreation areas, or even entire new neighbourhoods.

What is the purpose of urban renewal?

  1. To create more jobs in cities.
  2. To reduce crime in cities.
  3. To improve infrastructure in cities.
  4. To revitalise neighbourhoods in cities.

3. Read the following passage and answer the question that follows:

A marathon is a long-distance running race, usually 26.2 miles in length. The first modern marathon was held in Greece in 1896 as part of the first Olympic games. It has since become an internationally-recognized sporting event, with marathons taking place each year in cities around the world.

What is the origin of marathons?

  1. They were first held in Greece at the first Olympic games.
  2. They were first held in Italy as part of a religious festival.
  3. They were first held in England as part of a military drill.
  4. They were first held in the United States as part of a race.

4. Read the following passage and answer the question that follows:

The study of economics investigates how goods, services, and resources are produced, distributed, and consumed by people throughout the world. Economics can be divided into two main categories: microeconomics, which focuses on the behaviour of individual consumers and producers, and macroeconomics, which looks at broad economic trends.

What is the focus of microeconomics?

  1. The behaviour of individual producers.
  2. Broad economic trends.
  3. How goods are produced and distributed.
  4. How resources are consumed by people.

5. Read the following passage and answer the question that follows:

Animals play an important role in many cultures and religions around the world. For example, cows are revered as sacred animals in Hinduism, while cats were worshipped as gods by ancient Egyptians. In some traditions, certain animals represent spiritual guides or totems that give guidance or protection.

What is an example of how animals are viewed in different cultures?

  1. Cows are seen as symbols of good luck.
  2. Cats are revered as sacred animals.
  3. Some animals represent spiritual guides.
  4. Birds are used for divination purposes.

Also Read: GRE Exam Pattern and Syllabus

Quantitative reasoning section

Quantitative Reasoning tests a test taker's problem-solving abilities using arithmetic, algebraic skills, and data analysis. It includes two types of multiple-choice questions: quantitative comparison and problem-solving. The quantitative comparison questions ask the test taker to compare quantities without performing any calculations. Problem-solving questions require more in-depth mathematical knowledge and involve calculations with numbers, words, or figures.

Quantitative reasoning sample questions

  1. If a = 3 and b = 7, what is the value of a + b?
    A) 10 B) 11 C) 13 D) 17
  2. If x = 4 and y = 12, what is the value of 2x - y?
    A) -8 B) 4 C) 8 D) 16
  3. If a + b = 14 and a - b = 6, what is the value of a?
    A) 5 B) 10 C) 20 D) 30
  4. If x multiplied by y equals 12 and y multiplied by z equals 18, what is the value of x multiplied by z?
    A) 6 B) 12 C) 24 D) 36
  5. If n = 15 and m divided by 3 equals 5, what is the value of n + m?
    A) 20 B) 25 C) 30 D) 45
  6. How many line segments are formed when two intersecting lines have four points of intersection?
  7. In a class of 30 students, 13 are taking calculus and 16 are taking statistics; 5 students are enrolled in both courses. How many students are enrolled in neither course?
  8. A certain jar contains 4 red marbles, 8 green marbles, 3 blue marbles and 5 yellow marbles. If one marble is chosen at random, what is the probability that it will be green?
  9. Express 3x2 - 2x + 1 in simplified form.
  10. On a given day, a store sold 45 televisions at an average price of $298 each. What was the total amount of money received from the sales of these televisions?

Analytical writing section

The Analytical Writing section tests the ability to write clearly, concisely, and effectively. It consists of two essays: an issue essay and an argument essay. The issue essay requires the test taker to present a point of view on an issue and support it with relevant examples or reasons. The argument essay requires the test taker to read a passage, evaluate its arguments, and explain how they should be strengthened or weakened by certain evidence or information provided.

Analytical writing sample questions

  1. Write an essay on the following topic: “What is the most important lesson you have learned in life?”
  2. Write an essay on the following topic: “Describe a difficult decision you had to make and how it affected your life.”
  3. Write an essay on the following topic: “What is the most important quality a leader should possess?”
  4. Write an essay on the following topic: “What are the benefits of living a simpler life?”
  5. Write an essay on the following topic: “How has technology changed the way we communicate?”

Essay Section

  1. Describe a defining moment in your life when you made a positive impact on others.
  2. Tell a story of an experience that has had lasting effects on the way you view yourself and the world around you.
  3. Explain how an understanding of one’s own cultural heritage can help create a better world.
  4. Discuss the power of education and how it can shape societies for the better.
  5. Describe a powerful lesson you have learned from a difficult situation in your life.

Also Read: GRE Exam Score Guide

Getting ready to study abroad?
While you crack the GRE, sign up to explore universities and shortlist courses

Benefits of solving GRE papers

Solving GRE sample test papers is a great way to prepare for the exam and should be done regularly to get the best results on the day of the GRE. The five main benefits of solving GRE exam sample paper papers are:

1. Enhances speed and accuracy

Solving GRE test papers helps to increase the speed and accuracy of solving questions related to quant or verbal sections. Moreover, it enables individuals to finish the paper within the given time limit with fewer mistakes.

2. Improves problem-solving skills

By continuously solving GRE papers, individuals can enhance their problem-solving skills by practising difficult questions regularly. This, in turn, helps them to tackle any kind of questions with greater confidence in the examination.

3. Familiarizes students with Exam format

As the GRE paper provides a perfect replication of exam patterns, it helps students become familiar with all types of question formats that may appear in the examination.

4. Better time management

Solving GRE papers regularly allows individuals to practise their time management skills, which are essential to succeed in multiple-choice tests like the GRE. With regular practice, they can learn how to divide the time available among different sections and questions accordingly.

5. Enhances test taking ability

Solving GRE papers regularly helps individuals gain confidence in the examination hall, further improving their test-taking ability. This eventually helps students in performing better on the day of the exam

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are the different sections of the GRE?

The GRE (Graduate Record Examination) has three sections: verbal reasoning section, quantitative reasoning section, and analytical writing section.

2. What are the main benefits of solving GRE papers?

The five main benefits of solving GRE papers are enhanced speed and accuracy, improved problem-solving skills, Familiarising students with the exam format, better time management, and enhanced test-taking ability.

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