Most times, when people prepare for a test, there is always this curiosity as to what to expect. The GRE test is very important as regards building a career for so many, considering the cost of taking the test, the importance of the test in getting admitted to graduate school and the validity of the test result, one cannot help but feel a bit curious. One major question in the minds of anyone who wants to take the GRE test for the first time is “How many questions are on the GRE test?”. This is an extensive guide that will answer that question, and some other frequently asked questions about the GRE test.
The GRE test can be taken in the form of a computer-based test or as a paper-based test. Surprisingly, the amount of questions for each type of test differs from the other.
How Many Questions Are on the Computer-based GRE Test?
There are 82 questions in total on the Computer-based GRE test. However, the numbers can be increased depending on the amount of additional experimental and research sections. Here is a breakdown of how many courses are in each section of a computer-based GRE test.
Computer-based GRE test- Analytical section
In the analytical section, there are two essay questions known as “Analyze an Issue” and “Analyze and argument” sections. The test taker has 30 minutes for each section. That is a total of 60 minutes for the analytical section.
Computer-based GRE test- Verbal section
The verbal section has 40 questions in total. These 40 questions are divided into two subsections with 20 questions in each subsection. 30 minutes is the time required to complete each section. That is 60 minutes to complete the verbal section.
Computer-based GRE test- Quantitative section
The quantitative section is a bit similar to the verbal section. It entails 40 questions that are divided into two subsections with 20 questions on each subsection like that of the verbal reasoning. The difference is, the time required for each section is 35 minutes, which means the test taker is required to use 1 hour 10 minutes for the quantitative reasoning section.
Computer-based GRE test- Experimental Section (additional questions)
This section is unmarked and unscored, it may come up anywhere after the analytical writing section, and the questions could either be quantitative or verbal reasoning. This means that you may take the experimental section questions and think it is a quantitative or verbal question. When you get to the end of the GRE test and discover that you had two verbal or quantitative sections, then you have also attempted an experimental section because it would not be identified. This is done by ETS to test new questions in a controlled way like it is an official test. Nevertheless, it is expected that you take every section of the GRE test seriously. This experimental section usually consists of twenty questions, and this can bring the entire questions on a computer-based GRE test to 102.
Computer-based GRE test- Research Section
Sometimes, the experimental section is substituted for the research section. Most GRE test takers call this section a lucky section because it always comes last and the test taker is informed beforehand that there would be a research section. It is also an unscored section, and some test-takers can skip the whole section or attempt it without stress or anxiety. The number of research questions varies, so the test taker has 82 questions plus, the additional research questions.
How Many Questions Are on the Paper-based GRE Test?
The paper-based GRE test is quite different from the computer-based test. The paper-based test has a total of 102 scored test questions. The analytical writing has two sections like that of the computer-based test, and each section requires 30 minutes. The verbal reasoning has two sections with 25 questions in each section, and it requires 35 minutes for each section which amounts to 1 hour 10 minutes for the entire section. The quantitative reasoning also has two sections with 25 questions in each section and requires 40 minutes to complete one section, which amounts to 1 hour 20 minutes for the entire section.
The total questions in the paper-based GRE test are 102, and the maximum time to complete the test is 3 hours 30 minutes. The paper-based GRE test does not have an experimental or research section.
How Many Questions Are Important?
Traditionally, the more correct answers, the higher the score. Nevertheless, some test takers want to know how many questions they need to attempt to get the desired score. It is okay to know the questions that are important to you so as not to waste time on those that are of less importance. This is mostly applicable for the computer-based test because of the additional questions, but for the paper-based test, it is strongly advised that all questions are attempted. However, the GRE test is a section adaptive test.
This means that the rate of performance on the first subsection of a particular section determines how difficult the next section would be. So when a test taker performs poorly in the first subsection, the next section becomes easier, but when the performance of the first subsection is excellent, the next subsection becomes difficult. The disadvantage is, the easier the sections, the fewer points they provide.
The ETS is very private about how the exact specifics of different difficult subsections correspond to a certain amount of scaled score, but it is advisable to perform very well on the first subjection if you want to get a very good overall grade.
Penalties For Guessing Answers On The GRE Test
There are no known penalties for guessing on the GRE test. In a case where there is no more time, or you simply do not know the answer to a particular question, guessing is to your advantage. There are no lost points for guessing, and you may probably get the answer correctly and gain an additional point to your score.