The Analytical Writing section consists of two analytical writing tasks: a 45-minute "Present Your Perspective on an Issue" task and a 30-minute "Analyze an Argument" task.
Because the Analytical Writing section is a performance test, you must organize and articulate your own ideas as you discuss a complex issue as well as explain the logical soundness of an argument you have just read. The Verbal section of the GRE General Test measures reading comprehension, and verbal and analogical reasoning skills in a multiple-choice format.
While the Verbal section measures your ability to understand complex ideas expressed in written passages and in the relationships between words, the Analytical Writing section measures your ability to articulate and support ideas and to analyze arguments.
The TOEFL Writing and GRE Analytical Writing measures are intended to measure different sets of skills. The TOEFL Writing section contains two writing tasks: an independent task asks test takers to support an opinion in writing, and an integrated task that asks test takers to write responses that integrate and organize information from a reading passage and a lecture. These writing tasks are not designed to measure higher levels of critical thinking and analytical writing, but center instead on candidates' composition skills and command of English vocabulary, grammar, spelling, and syntax with some analysis and synthesis of material. Therefore, scores on the two tests are not comparable.
Because the TOEFL test emphasizes fundamental writing and comprehension skills, the TOEFL score can supplement an Analytical Writing score by helping faculty determine whether a low score on the GRE Analytical Writing measure is due to lack of familiarity with English or lack of ability to produce and analyze logical arguments.
You can register for the computer-based GRE General Test online, by phone, by mail or fax.
Paper-based administrations are offered only in areas of the world where computer-based testing is not available. You can register for the paper-based GRE General Test online or by mail.
If you are taking a computer-based test, you do not need an admission ticket. If you are taking a paper-based test, you should receive your admission ticket approximately three weeks after you register. You can also view and print your ticket online. If you do not receive your admission ticket at least 10 days before the test date, please print your ticket or contact ETS immediately to confirm your test center assignment.
You can reschedule or cancel your test up until three days prior to your appointment. For computer-based testing, you can cancel or reschedule online. To change your test center, contact the GRE Program by the registration deadline.
The processes for calculating reported scores for computer-based and paper-based tests are similar. In both cases, the number of correct answers is adjusted according to the difficulty level of the questions. Thus, the same number of correct responses on different test forms will not necessarily result in the same reported score.
With computer-based tests, you are given a set of questions with a difficulty level that is specifically designed to match your ability level. The process for calculating a score incorporates the statistical properties of the questions, as well as the number of questions you answer and answer correctly.
On paper-based tests, the differences in difficulty among test forms are relatively small and are adjusted through a process known as score equating. The number of questions answered is also figured into the calculation of the reported score because it limits the number that can be answered correctly.
You may use any one of a variety of strategies to structure your essays. Readers are explicitly trained to accept any strategy in an essay that meets the essential requirements of the essay task — i.e., a response that provides the information required by the essay prompt.
Three scores are reported on the GRE General Test:
If you answer no questions at all in a section (Verbal, Quantitative or Analytical Writing), you receive a No Score (NS) for that section.
Descriptions of the analytical writing abilities characteristic of particular score levels are available in the GRE Guide to the Use of Scores.
Yes. You can now view your scores online free of charge. You will need to create or have a My GRE Account to use this service.
At the end of the test, you will be given the option of cancelling your scores. You cannot cancel your score for one section of the test and have the scores for the remaining sections reported. Although you have the option of cancelling your scores, consider very carefully before doing so. Your scores will be reported to GRE score recipients only at your request. If you cancel your scores, they will NOT be reported to you or any score recipients and no refund will be made. Canceled scores are not added to your permanent record. If you wish to take the test again, you must reregister and submit another test payment. Note that once you view your scores, you may not cancel them.