Many schools home and abroad now require students to take the Graduates Record Examination. This exams, organised by the Educational Testing Service, has to be one of the highest levels of tests accepted by many schools. Mostly, candidates and schools refer to the exam by the acronym GRE. And for almost any course of study, the top universities around the world require this course. The GRE has two different kinds of tests. There’s the GRE general test, and there’s the GRE subject test.
The Educational Testing Service is in charge of the process and structure of both of these tests. The GRE standard test is a necessity for several programs. Majorly, it tests the candidate’s skills in quantitative and verbal reasoning alongside their analytical writing skills. On the other hand, the GRE subject looks to test candidates in specific topics related to their chosen course and program.
For this article, I am focusing on the physics section of the GRE subject test. Many candidates what precisely a good physics GRE score is so that they can prepare ahead. In this article, I will describe the physics test and explain what is considered a good physics GRE score.
When is the GRE Physics Test Necessary?
In some cases, candidates looking to enter into a physics-related graduate program need to take the physics GRE subject test. Please notice I used the word “some.” Not all schools will expect you to take the physics GRE subject test. It would help if you did proper research before applying.
Some schools ask you for only your GRE physics test. At the same time, some other schools ask you for only the GRE general test. And in some cases, they may want both or even none of these tests as a requirement. That’s why you need to ask all the necessary questions.
When you’re applying for any of these courses, please drop your intuition and ask questions. I am speaking from experience; a specific item on the list makes you ineligible for admission. However, if I were to make your choice, I’ll say you should write the physics GRE subject test irrespective of the school’s requirements. They may not need it to give the general admission. But it’s a great way to stand out from the crowd and show your desired school that you have what it takes to take the program excellently. Trust me; I’m not too serious; I love to stand out from others.
What Does the Physics GRE Subject Test Look Like?
Before you can even prepare for what you want to score, you need to understand the structure of the test. The time frame for this exam is about three hours, and most likely, you may have to solve up to 100 multiple-choice questions. You have five options (A-E) to pick from. To register for this GRE physics test, you can go through the official website of the Educational Testing Service. It costs $150 to register for this exam.
A primary difference between the GRE general test and GRE subject test is the exam schedule. You can write the GRE available test any time you wish during the year. On the contrary, the GRE subject test has three specific months during the year. You can take this exam either in April, September or October.
You do not get to offer this test on a computer like the general GRE; it’s a paper test. Of course, it’s a physics exam where you have to calculate, but I’m sorry to break it to you, your calculator is an illegal item. All you need to do is to bring things that confirm your identity and legibility for the exams. Likewise, stationaries like HB pencils and erasers are apparent necessities.
The questions are always dynamic as they can range from figures to graphs and many more. And the exams use the globally recognised measurement units. Physics deals with a lot of constants and conversions. You’ll find all the necessary information in your test booklet. That means you don’t need a variable if you were not given.
Essentially, the test wants to test your proficiency in basic physics principles. Usually, the Educational Testing Service believes you should know these principles. The questions range includes classical mechanics, quantum mechanics, electromagnetism and many more.
How is the Physics GRE Subject Test Scored?
Now, to explain your score, let’s assume you took a total one hundred questions. Your score passes through two stages; the raw score and the scaled score. As the name implies, the raw score is the total score of the number of questions you answered correctly. Now, calculations vary based on minimal changes. For this reason, the GRE to turn raw scores into scaled scores to minimise the effects of these changes on your score.
For the scaled score, the scores increases in tens. The lowest score is 200, and the highest is 900, and they convert these scores to percentile. Although most candidates never score as low as 410. As at July, the average physics GRE test score was 707. That means, when your score is above this average figure, you can say you have an “okay” score.
Is My Physics Score Good Enough?
Since I do not own my university, I can’t give a particular answer to that question. That’s because before you can say your physics score is good enough, it must pass the average score required by your school.
In some cases, some schools don’t even compel candidates to take the exam; they only advise. In other cases, some schools do not have an average score requirement. In cases like that, you can check the score requirements of the past session. Therefore, the best advice I’ll give is you need to understand which category your school falls under and work with the peculiarity.
“What is a good physics score” is a common question that many candidates that are taking the physics GRE subject test. However, the truth is a good physics score depends totally on the school choice of the candidate. So you see, the best thing is to ask questions and do the necessary research when you choose the school. Averagely, the accepted score is a score above 750 may suffice. But it still depends on your school.