I’m trying to study for the GRE. I got practice exams all around me. I take the GRE CAT practice exams from Kaplan and I can’t even make 1700. Stooopid, right? Not so fast. I take the practice exams from Arco. 2100+ and feeling more like my old self again.
In the Kaplan exams, my weakest area was analytical, by several orders of magnitude, followed by quantitative, with verbal the strongest. Surprise, surprise, in the Arco exams, my weakest area is verbal, followed by quantitative, with analytical by far the strongest. Both companies claim to be using GRE exams from last year.
This sucks. This is not a fair test, obviously, if I’m getting 400+ point swings on the same day and I haven’t even begun studying yet. And what exactly should I study for? Should I trust Kaplan and try to rescue my pitiful analytical scores, should I trust Arco and put faith in my near-perfect analyitcal scores and instead work on my apparently weak verbal scores? Or should I compromise and just study quantitative, which has been in the middle every time?
And to make matters worse, I found out that apparently the analytical section is being replaced by an essay section or some such nonsense? So how exactly am I supposed to practice for that, pray? And why do none of the current year books from the exam prep companies say anything about this?
Is ETS just full of shit? I’m beginning to think so. I can’t believe respected graduate schools are actually buying this crap. What about the good grades I worked so hard for? Writing samples? My research proposal and statement of purpose? Letters of recommendation? With so much other evidence, I think this wildly-swinging GRE thing should be left to swing from a tall branch.