Table of Contents
Before we set out to review the Kaplan Premier GRE 2016 review book, let's first explore why anyone would opt to take the GREs in the first place, shall we?
In the past, high school students wishing to further their education had a clear path: go to college, get a degree, find a job, and work your way up the corporate ladder over the next few decades until you could retire and travel the world. Sure, there were always those students who opted to continue on to medical school or law school, but for the most part, an undergraduate college education was sufficient.
Today, more and more people are choosing to study for graduate degrees, across a variety of fields and for a multitude of reasons. A post-college degree can give you the upper hand in applying for jobs, particularly when it comes to highly competitive fields where there are numerous applicants. Sometimes, a student will graduate college and enter the workforce only to decide down the road that he or she wishes to do something else, and rather than go back to school for another bachelor’s degree, may instead opt into doing a master’s program as a means of breaking into a new field. Still other individuals enjoy learning merely for its own sake, and are always looking to quench their thirst for new knowledge.
Studying for the GRE Exam
The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is a standardized test used as part of the graduate and business school admissions process. Similar to the SAT or ACT for college admissions, the GRE General Test analyzes students’ abilities in verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and analytical writing, all skills which are necessary in higher education.
When I was in my last year of college in New York, I started to ask myself what I planned on doing after graduation. I could start working straightaway, as many of my friends were planning on, but I knew already that I ultimately wanted to go back for my master’s degree. I decided that it made the most sense to go straight into a master’s program, since I was still at a stage in life where it wouldn’t be overly complicated to do so. True, we all know people who went back to get another degree after they had already started raising a family, but I figured that as a single person without too many responsibilities outside myself, there was no time like the present.
Most graduate schools I looked into required the GRE as part of the admissions process, and so I began exploring various study materials available for this exam. Unlike the SAT exam, I did not plan on taking this test more than once unless I absolutely needed to. Well, I am proud to say that with the help of Kaplan Premier GRE 2016, I surpassed my target score on the GREs and got accepted to the two graduate programs I was most interested in!
My Kaplan Premier GRE Book Review
The Kaplan GRE Premier 2016 helps students study for the test through both a review book and a mobile-enabled online component. This review system includes 6 full-length practice tests, 5 of which are available online and 1 in hard copy format in the book itself. Purchase of this book also includes access for one year to an online center with a quiz bank of an additional 500 questions, plus online study plans teaching students to make the most of their time (regardless of how much or little they have). Overall, the Premier 2016 provides more than 2,200 sample practice questions, with detailed explanations of each answer plus relevant strategies and tips for the test itself, as well as a DVD on stress management and the graduate school application process.
This book is very reasonably priced as compared to many other study materials, coming in at about $20 on Amazon (including free shipping). I appreciated that the book could be read clearly and easily, without all of the academic jargon that one might find in other such books.
The in-depth math section of this book was a real life-saver. I knew from the get-go that math would be my most challenging subject on this test, which was confirmed by Kaplan’s online component which demonstrates the studier’s areas of weakness via a graph. If not for the math breakdown and strategies I learned from this book, I really don’t know what I would have done. In fact, Kaplan is so confident in their ability to help students succeed that they offer a money-back guarantee that students will score higher on the GRE after studying with this book.
Kaplan Test Prep has been helping students prepare for entrance into secondary schools, colleges, and graduate programs for more than 75 years. They provide further support through their Facebook and Twitter pages.
All About the GRE Revised General Test
The GRE is not limited to students in the United States, but rather is available in over 160 countries at more than 1,000 testing centers. In some parts of the world it is available as a computer-delivered test, while in areas where that isn’t available, prospective students may take the paper-delivered test.
The computer-delivered GRE General Test is available year round at Prometric testing centers, and scores can be received 10-15 days after the testing date (longer for written tests). Students are permitted to take the computerized GRE once every 21 days, and no more than 5 times within any 12-month period. The written test may be taken as often as it is offered.
The GRE is accepted at thousands of graduate schools across the US, Puerto Rico, Australia, Belgium, China, France, Croatia, Egypt, India, Ireland, Jordan, Kenya, Israel, Korea, Malaysia, Lebanon, Norway, Nigeria, New Zealand, Switzerland, and many more countries.
In addition to the regular GRE general test, there are specific subject tests available in seven specific disciplines: Psychology, Physics, Mathematics, English Literature, Chemistry, Biology, and Biochemistry/Molecular Biology. They are designed specifically for applicants who majored in one of the aforementioned subjects, or otherwise has an extensive background in them. Unlike the GRE subject tests, the GRE general test is not limited to any one specific area, but rather tests skills that are relevant and important for graduate schools across the board.
Depending on your area of interest and the particular schools which you are applying to, it may be more relevant to take the GRE general test, one or more of the GRE subject tests, or even both.