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Not doing good on verbal, but...


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Hi. I'll be taking the GRE on June 5th (a week from today). I just finished one of the practice tests that ETS provides for test takers and my scores were 152V and 166Q.


I'm from Mexico, and I've studied both math and verbal for like 2 months. I've taken other practice tests like the Manhattan ones and my score on verbal seems to vary between 151 and 157. I've heard from some of my Mexican friends who are already in grad school (at Cornell, Chicago, Columbia...) that I should not worry that much about verbal score, that something around 155-158 should be enough for international students as long as you do well on math.


Of course I'll still try to improve and do my best on the verbal section, but I wanted to ask if anybody knows how true is this, because I was getting pretty worried and considered rescheduling my test date.




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I believe that it depends on the program which you are applying. I got in to Yale Immunology (PhD) with a verbal of 160, but I got some friends who were accepted to other universities (phd as well) with verbal scores around 155 and quantitative scores around 163.


Good luck and don't worry to much.


PS: I'm from Peru.

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My advice? Change the date of your exam for September or October. Rather than going madhouse on verbal, do 15-30 minutes a day. The thing about the verbal section is it's better studied for incrementally, rather than the more time-intensive quant section. Put 500 words into Anki and plow through 50 words a day. For the other 15 minutes, work on practice questions of sentence equivalence and text completion. Vocab is paramount, but so is understanding the sentence structure, tricks, and nuances of the verbal section. 

Edited by HopefulComparativist
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Verbal score do matters, also GRE score is not the only measure for getting admission to good university. Why take a risk, rather prepare well and improve your verbal score
Here are some tips to improve your verbal 

1. Understand how vocabulary works in context. You should look up for example sentence online.

2. Use lists of prefixes, roots, suffixes, common mistakes, similar words, etc. 

3. Read articles which are scholarly, dense, and challenging. And remember whenever you encounter words you don’t know, look those words up and try to get a better sense of how they function in context. 


Apart from this, their is an alternate way of improving vocabulary through flashcard. Some of the GRE providers are providing vocab flash card on Mobile App Like Magoosh, Gradestack, Barron's etc. The best part is you can memorize vocab using flashcard on the go. We also offer similar app - Gradestack GRE app which has over 3500+ Vocab flash card, 2000+ test questions with detailed solution. You can try to use it see if you are seeing any improvement.

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