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Ask your GRE questions here: How important? Are yours too low? When to take?

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Replies to: Ask your GRE questions here: How important? Are yours too low? When to take?

  • joelunixjoelunix User Awaiting Email Confirmation Posts: 12 New Member
    Thanks. I'll post back to let you know what it looks like when I get my score report. (In November- they're waiting to send our reports right now to get enough data)
  • MomPhDMomPhD Registered User Posts: 313 Member
    On the new test, why is the range estimated for the Q section 50 points, but 100 points for the V section? My kid took this new GRE last week and got an estimated 700-800 V and 750-800 Q. An 800 Q on the old GRE was just 85th percentile, whereas a lower 700's V score could still be 97th percentile. So a 50 point range actually represents a wider spread in percentiles for the Q section than a 100 point range represents for the V section. For anyone aiming for a top STEM program, it is hard to know whether to retake with only this 50 point range to go by.
  • joelunixjoelunix User Awaiting Email Confirmation Posts: 12 New Member
    I would guess that is because the score is so high and they can't give you an estimate higher than 800 but they can also be certain that you won't get lower than 750. Probably if the score were very low, like 600, they would give a 100-point spread. Just a guess though.
  • MomPhDMomPhD Registered User Posts: 313 Member
    A call to ETS got this answer: ranges will be given in spreads anywhere from 20-100 pts. One guess (mine, not ETS's) is that as the database of new test results grows over time, the ranges will become more narrow? (more data ---> better defined correlations with old test scores). The correlation will be based on percentiles rather than raw or calculated scores, right? The ETS call center did not know how these ranges were generated by their program.
  • cjchriscjchris Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
    I took the new GRE on August 1st. My first time so nothing to compare, but it gave me a range of 100 points on each score. I am happy with the range. Did the old test do a range, and if so how did it compare with the final score?
  • kryptonsa36kryptonsa36 Registered User Posts: 1,735 Senior Member
    The old test did not give a range. It gave a discrete, numerical score that, except for the rare occasion, would be the exact same score you later received in the official score report.
  • MaximaroMaximaro Registered User Posts: 41 Junior Member
    I had similar results, the Q just gave me 750 to 800, and then I had a range for verbal (610 to 710). I will be curious to see how it translates to the 170 scale and how graduate schools will look at it.
  • MD_MomMD_Mom Registered User Posts: 537 Member
    D just received a range of 710-800 V and 660-760 Q and is keeping her fingers crossed that her Q score won't get in the way of successful application to competitive biology and public health programs. She has great research experience, GPA and recs should be very solid too. Will be interested to see how it all looks when November rolls around!
  • funnybouncefunnybounce Registered User Posts: 27 New Member
    I'm applying to several biochem programs this fall, and I signed up to take the chem GRE in November. I know most schools don't care too much which subject test you take, but lately I've been seriously considering paying the $50 to change my test to the biochem/cell and molecular bio test. I'm hoping that a high score will improve my chances because I have a few not-so-great grades in my major classes, including biochem. Since I'm trying to apply for biochem programs, would it make more sense to take the biochem GRE instead of the chem GRE to kind of make up for my weak grades?

    The thing is I have some weak grades in my physical chemistry classes too, so doing well on the chem GRE could also be helpful. So what should I do? I really need to make up my mind soon so that I can commit to studying for one exam or the other.
  • MD_MomMD_Mom Registered User Posts: 537 Member
    Just my two cents, but I'd guess that strong recommendations or research experience would do more compensate for weak grades than subject test scores. (Even with a good score, grades might look like lack of interest or not working up to your abilities rather than potential.)
  • funnybouncefunnybounce Registered User Posts: 27 New Member
    thanks for your reply! I have two years of research experience in two different labs, and both of those PIs will be writing letters for me. I think those will be strong recs and my third one should be pretty good too. I know GREs aren't that important to admissions committees, but I'm just trying to do every little thing I can to improve my chances. I figured a high score on a subject in which I have weaker grades couldn't hurt.
  • MomwaitingfornewMomwaitingfornew Registered User Posts: 5,821 Senior Member
    @funnybounce: if you are applying for biochemistry and think you will do well on that subject GRE, take that one since it answers directly to your intended field. I suspect that it will go further in dismissing weak grades than a straight chemistry test will, although the key is to take the one that you'll expect to do best on.
  • denizendenizen - Posts: 380 Member
    When requesting additional GRE Score Reports from ETS to send to my institutions, is there an cost advantage to send them all out at the same time (i.e., use 1 form) or can I send them out "a la carte" as I finish each application? :)
  • MomwaitingfornewMomwaitingfornew Registered User Posts: 5,821 Senior Member
    I don't know if there's a financial advantage to sending them out en masse or waiting. You'll have to check the website.

    Don't worry about sending GRE scores before you submit an application. The graduate admissions office (not the department) holds all components until an application is complete -- and then it sends the completed package to the program. It's better to have your transcripts and test scores waiting for your application than the other way around, just because scores/transcripts can take longer to arrive. If you know you'll be applying somewhere, then you might as well send the scores -- unless, of course, you plan to retake before then.
  • denizendenizen - Posts: 380 Member
    Thanks. Well my reason was not really so that the grad offices got all my components on time, but so I wouldnt waste any money on scores for applications I never finish, etc.
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