GRE Verbal Preparation, Practice Test, Questions, Syllabus, Pattern, Tips

By Sakchi Khandelwal Updated On - Jun 29, 2022 05:01 PM

Preparing for GRE? But have a handful of questions in mind. Do not worry, this article has in-depth information on GRE Verbal Reasoning section to help you all out with the basic and important things to keep in mind while GRE Verbal Reasoning section prep. So stay tuned!

GRE (Graduate Record Examinations) Verbal Reasoning is one of the crucial sections in the General Test. Most students must have noticed while applying for the programme - 'This programme accepts GRE scores. And you all start wondering, what's that? 

So, for the unversed and newbies, GRE is a standardised test, usually requested by US-based institutes from Master's degree applicants, that calculates three vital parameters - verbal, quantitative reasoning and analytical writing. 

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What is GRE Verbal Reasoning?

GRE Verbal Reasoning is one of the important sections of the three vital parameters. The test consists of MCQs (Multiple Choice Questions). The test is scored within the range of 130-170, which contributes to the total GRE score. 

This section is fully focused on testing your ability to extract information that is relevant to the data provided. It also tests the ability to understand the connection between words, concepts and different sentences and the students' familiarity with English grammar rules.

GRE Verbal Reasoning Pattern

The GRE Verbal Reasoning section has two subsections that have 20 questions each. Each section has a time limit of 30 minutes, i.e the candidates have a total of only 1 hour to complete the section. As aforementioned, the score of the verbal reasoning section will add up to the final composite score of GRE - out of 340.

The score in this section ranges between 130 and 170 ( also known as scaled score). This scaled score varies from the 'raw' score obtained in the section. These scores, which are computer-adaptive, take into account the difficulty level solved by the candidate.

GRE Verbal Questions

Reading comprehension, text completion, and sentence equivalence are the three types of GRE Verbal questions. Half of the questions require you to read, comprehend, and respond to the associated questions. The remaining half of the questions need you to read and interpret the content provided in order to complete sentences or paragraphs.

The GRE Verbal Reasoning syllabus consists of three types of questions:

Reading Comprehension

The reading comprehension question has two-three paragraphs with an aim to test your reading skills and ability to capture the ideas from the texts in the given time. The topics given are mostly general topics of interest. This question type also determines if you can dig out more information from the texts or not. 

The Reading Comprehension question comes in various formats. So, before kick-starting the preparation, it is crucial to understand the question types to make a good study plan. 

  • Multiple choice questions (select one answer): Here, you will be provided with a set of questions. Each question has five options to choose the one correct answer. 

  • MCQ (select multiple answers): Each question will have multiple options for the correct answer. Here more than one option can be correct or sometimes all of them. 

  • Select-in-passage: This kind of question format contains a para or two. The answer is usually directed to a sentence in the passage that meets the question's description. 

Text Completion 

As the sub-head itself suggests, the question type gives five sentences. The paragraph has at least four-five blanks that need to be answered or filled with appropriate answers from a word choice given with the passage. 

Sentence Equivalence 

The sentence equivalence question type includes a set of sentences with blanks that need to be filled with options given in the passage. At least five options are provided for each blank and the candidate here needs to choose two correct options to complete the sentence. The motive behind the question type is to identify two words with similar meanings. 

Answering Strategies for GRE Verbal Reasoning Section

Strategising before sitting for tests is highly recommended. The candidate must prepare how he or she is going to answer the question in such a time-packed period. 

Strategies for Text Completion

First of all, start reading the passage carefully and understand what it wants to convey. Then identify the words that focus or emphasise the structure of the para like although, moreover, regardless, etc. 

Now start filling up the blanks in your own words and search for the options with similar words and meaning that fits the para or sentence correctly. 

Once you are done with the answers, do not forget to check again by reading the para again to fill up the blanks. Ensure that the passage is complete in three senses - grammatical, logical and stylistic.

Strategies for Sentence Equivalence

Keep in mind that here the meaning of the words need not be the same. In this question type, the words may differ but have to be meaningful with the sentence. First try out all the options presented, instead of directly deciding on the correct answers. 

You may also try prefixes and suffixes to convey the meaning of words you are unfamiliar with. Try to look for English words and phrases with contrast or comparison. 

Always first fill up the blanks with your own words and then look for the words provided. Do not forget to double-check your answers by reading the entire sentences with your words. 

Strategies for Reading Comprehension

Here, do not try to read the entire paragraphs initially. Start with reading questions as this will help you to identify answers while reading the paragraphs. 

Understand the topic, purpose and scope of the passage and try to differentiate between opinions and facts. Sometimes you can also paraphrase the text, questions and answers. Consider all the options presented as a question may have more than one answer. 

The foremost thing to keep in mind here is to not go out of context. Keep your answers within the text and do not let your outside knowledge enter the answers. 

Confused About Preparing for GRE Verbal Reasoning?

How is the GRE Verbal Score Calculated?

As earlier mentioned, the GRE Verbal score equally contributes to the final GRE score. To calculate the GRE score, the raw score is first of calculated, which is based on the number of correct answers. 

Now with the help of the equating process, the total score is ranged or scaled between 130 - 170. The scaled score depends on these crucial factors - several correct answers, a total of questions, accuracy and difficulty level are considered. 

A good score can help to get admission to top universities in the world. However, for this, the candidates need to have strong GRE vocabulary strategies. Apart from this, GRE Verbal practice is equally important for the best preparation. 

Importance of GRE Verbal Practice Test

GRE Verbal practice tests can go a long way in scoring high in the section. However, it is notable that there are no separate practice tests for the Verbal Reasoning section on the GRE. You will have to access the same practice tests while preparing for the exam. 

Let us find out why you should attempt practice tests for the GRE Verbal section:

  • While attempting reading comprehension questions in the section, practice tests will enable you to easily distinguish between the different types of multiple-choice questions.

  • Text completion questions require you to completely understand the essence of the passage and find the appropriate options. GRE Verbal practice tests will make it easier for you to select words that lend the correct meaning to the entire passage. 

  • Questions based on sentence equivalence assess your ability to deduce the meaning of partial sentences. How GRE verbal practice tests help is that they help candidates grasp the tone of the sentence, which is crucial because two words that have the same meaning, may not fit the tone of the sentence. 

How to Prepare for Verbal in GRE?

Solving as much as GRE verbal practise tests can help you to polish your skills and ability to give answers accurately. Here are a few tips to word on GRE English:

  • Try to read English magazines, newspapers, and articles or practise paraphrasing. 

  • Each day try to learn new words and phrases and their meanings

  • Work on your time management skills. Try to solve easy and known problems first. 

  • Do not skip any part of the passage as it can break your understanding.

  • If more than one answer is correct for a question, do not forget to mark all the possible solutions.
  • After practising the GRE verbal practice questions, always try to review your mistakes and work on them.

  • Avoid making the same mistakes you made while practising.

With so many things, including the question type and formats, it is always advisable to practise question papers as much as possible to avoid any kind of silly mistakes during the day of the test. It will also help you understand the pattern of the paper from beforehand, which will keep you mentally ready.

If you want to know more about the GRE Verbal Reasoning section or have any doubts regarding the same, just write to us at for the best expert advice. 

Boost Your GRE Verbal Score With the Help of Our Experts!

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