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Atypical GRE scores for an engineer - Should I retake?


Sijit22
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Hi there! I decided a little late I wanted to apply to graduate schools, so I've been scrambling to put my applications together. I took my GRE about a month ago and got a 170V/161Q/5.0AW. I know the math score is pretty mediocre for an engineering M.S., but is it poor enough that I should retake? I'm not applying to any top 20 schools, most of the schools I am looking at are in the 25-50 range. I have a decent GPA (3.5) from a top ten undergrad program, research experience, and two internships, so the rest of my application is pretty good overall. FWIW, I didn't study for the GRE, so I am pretty sure if I studied and worked on my pacing for the Q section, I could improve substantially. I have this annoying tendency to get stuck on a question and spend half on my time on it (happened on the SAT as well). Also, I know that engineering programs don't really care about the verbal and AW beyond it being "not horrible", but do I get any brownie points for doing well on these sections? Just a few?

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I would retake if only because a lot of schools use GRE scores as a measure of "should we even consider this app".  If you apply to one and their cutoff is 165, you are going to short just by a bit but it won't matter.  I retook to boost my scores and did so successfully with only a month of studying.  Learning how to take the test really did most of the work.  I did much better the second time.  

 

And as for the brownie points, probably not.  My verbal and argument sections were off the charts but I have been told by many social scientists that these matter not to social science adcoms for the most part (I am in a highly quantitative field) and that my quant score was valued the most.  So, I would imagine engineering would be even worse to deal with as far as quant scores mattering.

 

I don't think it will kill you but it couldn't hurt to retake, either.

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