You can either learn from someone's mistakes or you can learn from someone's success. Surely, both the forms are equally important. This is a guide to the former.
I didn't get a particularly good score in GRE. 1340. Not that bad, but obviously if you are reading this, your aim will be significantly higher (say 1500+). So, here are some of the "avoidable" mistakes I made. Learn from them, don't repeat them:P
1) There seems to be a pervasive misunderstanding that GRE is a test of Barron's words. Although it was quite true until some time ago, things have changed significantly. Today, Barron's is a guide to - which words are least likely to be asked in the GRE, and it is a good guide:). Even if you learn each and every Barron's word carefully, paying attention to the minutest nicety, you would be very lucky to cross 550 in verbal.
This dosen't mean you go to the market and buy a book giving you a list of non-barron's words. The point I wish to propound is that "learning" words from "lists" is no longer the only thing required to crack the GRE. What you need is good language which only comes from voracious reading (not only fiction, but a wide variety of books, magazines and articles). The words asked are not obscure words coined by a jobless pedant, they are the words which we have heard here and there, yet they are not as popularly used.
Words like "hull"(v) or "ream"(n) etc. These words won't appear in any of the lists.
Yet, a good reader will be well aware of these words. Also, it is less likely yo find these words in a fiction or a non-fiction book. What you need is a comprehensive reading habit.
That is the new GRE !! nothing great .... nothing to be afraid of ... very few esoteric words, but its a real test of your language !! and thats what people are afraid of !:). The test of your language and NOT your ratta skills.
I suggest, if you have time, start reading newspapers, magazines, watch sitcoms, movies, etc. Don't discount on the Barron's lists ... they are going to fetch yoy 550 ... its the way to 800 that we are trying to uncover and the way has to pass through Barron's !!:)
2) Do not neglect RCs and SCs. People tend to leave RCs for option assuming that they can cover up the score in the other question types. They are grossly mistaken. RCs is going to be your saving grace in the GRE (it was my saving grace, words totally screwed me). + If you get easy questions for the other types, good answers for the RCs can land you well above 1500. Also, RCs are NOT as difficult as people tend to think. Its difficulty is merely aggrandized by the grapevine. They are manageable, but only with practice can you tackle RCs.
And the last thing, don't neglect analytical section either, although it is not at all difficult to score above 4, people tend to bungle up in over-confidence. It is not that easy either. + a good 5 or 5.5 can compensate for a mediocre GRE score.
In summary, Barron's is NOT the ultimate guide, concentrate on improving your language.
DO NOT neglect RCs and SCs.
Best of luck !!
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