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GRE Score Percentiles – What Does Your Score Mean for You?

When the revised GRE scoring scale was introduced, it often left test takers (and admissions folks!) scratching their heads, trying to make sense of the 130-170 scale. But now that it’s been a few years and we’re all accustomed to the scoring scale, there are new questions about GRE score percentiles, and what they mean for you.

Whether you took the old or new GRE, you’re probably wondering what a good GRE score percentile is, and what you should aim for. In this post, I’ll also address some of the most frequently asked questions Magoosh has been getting. These questions concern the three benchmarks: the 50th percentile, the 60th percentile, and the 155 Verbal/Quant score. And of course, I’ll show you the current Verbal and Quant GRE score percentiles (using the ETS’s GRE percentiles 2017 data). Let’s get to it!

GRE Score Percentiles-magoosh

What is a good percentile on the GRE?

By their very nature, no GRE score percentiles or GRE section scores are created equal. Many degree programs especially favor those 50th and 60th GRE percentiles. Similarly, many graduate admissions offices like to see you reach that 155-point benchmark.

Where these benchmarks are concerned, GRE percentiles and GRE exam scores will be different for each section of the exam. Additionally, some admissions programs may ask for one of the “big three” benchmarks on one section of the GRE, while asking for a different benchmark on another section.

To get an idea of how this works, let’s look at a few example standards for GRE percentiles. The Economics program at the University of California Davis currently requires 60th or higher GRE score percentiles in Verbal, and at least the 70th percentile in Quant. Or, as another example, Harvard’s Graduate School of Education advises a minimum of the 50th percentile for Verbal, while Quant scores can be as low as 30th percentile.

As you can see, a “good” GRE percentile varies a lot, depending both on the school and the type of program. With all of that in mind, let’s look at each of the 50th/60th/155 benchmarks that many schools highlight. Again, we’ll be looking at standards as of 2017.

What is a GRE score in the 50th percentile?

GRE score percentiles will vary from section to section.

For Verbal, 150 is the 48th percentile, while 151 is the 52nd. So either of those scores will put you close to the 50th. However, only a score of 151 or higher will put you above this benchmark for the Verbal section.

Quant scores for the 50th percentile are just slightly higher. A 152 in GRE Quant is 47th percentile for the section, while a 153 is 51st percentile. So here, 153 is your minimum to be above the 50th.

In the Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) section, there are far fewer points to be had. With a score range of 0 to 6 in 0.5 point increments, there are a limited number of possible scores. This means there are only 10 possible GRE percentiles for AWA. And as you can imagine, there is a pretty big point spread between these percentiles. A 4.0 puts you in 60th percentile, a full 10 percentiles above the benchmark. But the next score down, a 3.5, places you at the 42nd percentile. This is almost 10 percentiles below the benchmark, a dramatic drop!

What is 60th percentile on GRE?

Like I mentioned above, a 4.0 in AWA hits the 60th percentile for GRE right on the nose. Just one bracket lower at 3.5, however, and you are way off.

For 60th percentile, your Quantitative score will again need to be slightly higher than your Verbal score. For GRE Verbal, a 153 puts you at the 61st percentile. Just one score point lower, a 152 bumps you down to the 56th percentile.

For Quant, the cutoffs are much closer. A 155 in GRE Quant is just under, at the 59th percentile. And a 156 sits in the 62nd percentile, just above the benchmark.

What percentile is 155 on GRE?

As you might expect after reading the previous sections, a 155 means a higher percentile for Verbal and a lower one for Quant. There are exactly 10 points of spread between Verbal and Quant GRE percentiles. A Verbal score of 155 puts you in the 69th percentile, but the same score in Quant is in the 59th percentile.

With the AWA’s very different range and scaling, there isn’t actually a 155 score. Still, a 4.0 AWA score is the closest equivalent to a 155 Verbal/Quant score. This will put you in the 60th percentile, which is not too far off from the Verbal and Quant percentiles we mentioned above.

What are the current GRE score percentiles? (ETS’s GRE Percentiles 2017)

ETS is kind enough to post their GRE score report with percentile rankings and a conversion chart. I’ve reproduced the charts of the GRE score percentiles below:

Verbal GRE Score Percentiles

ScorePercentileScorePercentile
1709915048
1699914943
1689814839
1679814735
1669714631
1659614527
1649414424
1639314320
1629114217
1618814115
1608614012
159831399
158801388
157761376
156731364
155691353
154651342
153611332
152561321
151521311

Quantitative GRE Score Percentiles

ScorePercentileScorePercentile
1709715038
1699614935
1689414830
1679214727
1669114624
1658914520
1648714417
1638414314
1628114212
1617814110
160761408
159731396
158691384
157661373
156621362
155591352
154551341
153511331
15247132-
15143131-

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So… What percentile should I aim for on the GRE?

You’re probably wondering how your GRE score percentiles affect your chances of admission. As you saw earlier from my UC Davis and Harvard examples, in a very broad sense, a “good” GRE percentile is the percentile your target school would ideally like to see. But “aim for what your school wants” is perhaps too broad to be helpful. And there are certainly a few ground rules for GRE percentiles, no matter where you want to go to school.

Avoid the bottom half of the percentiles

Obviously, it’s best not to be below the 50th percentile, because that puts you in the bottom half. Most schools post a recommended or required score that is 50th percentile in at least one section. If you’re below the 50th percentile in a section of the GRE, that may be acceptable in some cases. However, even if your target school allows for this, such a low score could still be a red flag for an admissions officer. And if you’re below the 50th percentile in Verbal, Quant, and AWA, your score probably isn’t going to impress anyone. So although being below 50th percentile in just one section of the test isn’t always a deal-breaker, you should avoid being in the bottom half of the percentiles if possible.

Check the scores for your academic discipline

If, for example, you’re wondering about GRE scores for your Engineering program, then your peers aren’t going to be exactly the same as the standard GRE test taker (think: lots of math). In Bhavin’s post on average GRE scores, you’ll see that the average Verbal score for Engineering majors is 148, the 39th percentile. In this case, being at 50th or just over could make you quite competitive. On the other hand, the average Quant score is 158. So if you want to go to grad school for Engineering, you’ll need a Quant score that’s 69th percentile or higher. To figure out the best minimum percentile for your disciple, check out the rest of that table in Bhavin’s post. Then compare your average score to the percentile information in this post.

For a detailed and a bit complicated breakdown of GRE percentiles by major, see pages 26-29 of the official GRE Guide to the Use of Scores.

Look at requirements for your target school’s program

Of course, Bhavin is looking at academic fields as a whole. School-by-school percentile requirements are all different. And top schools like Harvard, Stanford, and the like are looking for higher GRE score percentiles than your discipline might require. This is where our post on GRE scores for top schools comes in. You can use this post to compare the scores needed for your discipline against your target school to find which GRE percentile to aim for.

To use one last example, let’s say you want to study Biological Sciences at UCLA.

Therefore, you’ll want to aim for well above the 50th or 60th percentile for this program.

How can I compare old GRE percentiles to new GRE percentiles?

If you took an 800-point GRE, those scores are (of course!) expired. Still, you may wonder how your percentile on the older GRE measures up to the GRE percentiles 2017 data in this post.

Though we’ve updated this post to contain only the most recent information, the ETS has you covered when it comes to finding those old GRE percentiles. On their official website, you can find a concordance table that compares old GRE scores to new GRE scores. This table will also help you understand how old GRE percentiles relate to the newer standards. So be sure to check out ETS’s old GRE percentiles vs. GRE percentiles 2017 table!

Old GRE percentiles vs. GRE percentiles 2017: How not to compare

It’s very important to understand why older GRE scores are treated as expired. For one thing, older formats of the GRE don’t completely reflect the academic standards of the present-day test. So even with a concordance table, you’ll never see a perfect match.

This is true even of “new GRE” scores that predate the statistics we use today. Old GRE percentiles from, say, 2011 or 2012 may be based on the current 130-170 GRE score range. However, the test was still different back then, in subtle but important ways. The stats for GRE test takers were also different back then. The exact nature of the grad school applicant pool is in fact always changing. That’s why the GRE percentiles table draws from multiple years. With year-to-year variation in the applicant pool, a “big picture” is needed.

Above all, the big picture shows that old GRE percentiles aren’t closely correlated to the percentile you might get on the test today. So if you have a much older GRE score, don’t use your old GRE percentiles to predict how you’ll do the next time around. The GRE percentiles 2017 data in the tables above should be your real guide.

Notes about “What are my chances for admission?” comments, in relation to GRE score percentiles

While I’d love to give everyone some hard and fast GRE score percentiles that guarantee your chances (it’s a nerve-wracking, opaque experience, I know), I unfortunately can’t. This is because there are numerous factors involved in the admissions decisions and most of those aren’t determined by the GRE alone.

My universal recommendation is that you check where you stand compared to the GRE score percentiles above. Then have a look at the forums to see other students’ experiences. Of course, if you have questions about methodology or how to achieve certain scores, or pretty much anything outside of “what are my chances?” or “where should I apply?” then I’ll be happy to answer them.

And if you’re looking to improve your GRE score percentile, think about giving Magoosh GRE prep a shot. You can start with our free GRE Prep App and see if a little extra dedication to prep helps your confidence. Good luck!

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in April 2013 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

Magoosh students score 12 points better than average on the GRE. Click here to  learn more!

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50 Responses to GRE Score Percentiles – What Does Your Score Mean for You?

  1. Yamil October 24, 2013 at 7:16 pm #

    About how many questions can you miss on the verbal and quantitative sections in order to obtain a score in the range of 150-155 in each section?

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer October 25, 2013 at 11:42 am #

      Hey Yamil!

      Unfortunately it’s hard to say exactly, since the weight of the questions changes between sections. That means missing 10 in the first section is not the same as missing 10 in the second section. As 150-155 is around the average score, you should have a decent sized cushion to work with. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  2. binc October 18, 2013 at 1:16 pm #

    hey chris
    i have one week left to give my GRE. Iam not doing well on verbal and analytical section. In verbal I think iam not good in reading comprehension and in AWA, i always feel Iam short of ideas.Can you please help me with some good sources which can guide me in the next week to get a good score.
    Also my college is asking for a score more than 50 th percentile which i guess requires 300 marks in total.

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer October 18, 2013 at 3:16 pm #

      Hey Binc! First off I recommend taking advantage of all the resources on this blog. We’ve got loads of AWA posts so I definitely think that’s where you’ll get most of the information. Also check out this one week GRE study schedule. That should put you on the right track. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  3. Michel Montaigne October 8, 2013 at 4:42 pm #

    Hi Chris.

    You are a one man wrecking-crew when it comes to dispensing sage advice pertaining to the world of graduate studies 🙂

    I have my own scenario I would love for you to advise me on. I am going back to school after a lengthy hiatus to study political science or history (still deciding). I know I can score well on writing and the verbal section, but my quantitative score is going to be VERY low- and frankly, I don’t even want to bother cramming all that math garbage into my head (nothing personal for you math lovers, but I am a creature of the Humanities!).

    Do you think programs will look down on my low quantitative scores, even though I hope to encounter little to no math during my graduate scholarship?

    Thank you very much,
    From Tucson, AZ

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer October 18, 2013 at 3:07 pm #

      Hey Michel! I recommend cramming at least enough to get around 151 (the average score). Any lower than that and you might have a tough go of it. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  4. Jeffrey October 7, 2013 at 2:55 pm #

    I scored a 150 on quant and a 157 on verbal (after 5 years outside of academics not doing math) with a score pending for the AW. I am trying to get into an environmental studies or food studies PhD program. i concede that my quant score is low, but I will have my previous MS in food science, a published work, strong recommendations, and previous 3.5 GPA. Should I retest?

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer October 18, 2013 at 3:04 pm #

      It’s really hard to say since it varies program to program. For many PhD programs, research fit and ability is much more important than the GRE, so make sure that aligns and you might be able to overcome the math score. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  5. Tripti September 26, 2013 at 11:26 am #

    Hi Chris,
    I am looking forward for an opportunity in PhD marketing in these following universities:
    1. University of Houston, Main Campus
    2. Rice University, Houston
    3. Texas A&M University, College Station

    My GRE Score is 304 (VB-151, QT-153), AW is still awaited, My toefl exam is scheduled in Nov,13 (Hoping for 100 above), Can u please suggest me that whether I should go for another GRE test.

    Thanks

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 27, 2013 at 2:40 pm #

      Hey Tripti! Unfortunately I’m not extremely familiar with the PhD in Marketing programs, particularly at those schools. Try to reach out to the schools to see what information you can find!

      Best,
      Chris S

  6. Ansh September 23, 2013 at 3:24 am #

    Hi Chris,

    In need of help. I scored 313 on GRE (V 154, Q 159, AWA 4.5). I am looking forward to PhD CS/MIS. There is lot of info on MS and required GRE scores but unfortunately not much info on PhD. Can these scores help me get a decent University. I have 4 years of Work Experience as a Test analyst in an US MNC.

    Should I retake GRE? That would be really difficult for me though. Please advise.

    Thanks.

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 27, 2013 at 2:44 pm #

      Hey Ansh! Essentially for PhD, you should just tack on a few points to both scores to whichever program you’re looking at. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  7. Raj September 19, 2013 at 11:18 am #

    Hey Chris,
    i scored a 314 in the GRE (Q=162;V=152;AWA=4)
    I am looking to pursue a Masters in CS at USC, GaTech, Rutgers-New Brunswick and University of Florida- Gainsville.
    Could you help me out, whether or not my scores are appropriate for the universities where i wish to apply.
    Thanks alot for your time.

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 20, 2013 at 2:37 pm #

      Hey Raj! I’m not sure about Rutgers or UF, but you can check out the post I wrote about USC GRE Scores. That should give you an idea if you’re in the right direction. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  8. Adam September 17, 2013 at 5:47 am #

    Hi Chris

    I am trying to figure out what my GRE score is worth. I got Q163 and V159. GPA3.7. I want to apply to a graduate program in bioinformatics. Where can I find information regarding average GRE scores in different universities in this subject?

    Thank you!

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 20, 2013 at 2:33 pm #

      Hey Adam! I’d check out US News to start and then head over to my post GRE Scores for Life Sciences Programs. It won’t line up exactly with your field but you can extrapolate the data a bit to to get a better idea of what you’ll need. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  9. Karishma September 15, 2013 at 5:12 am #

    Hi,

    Do Engineering Colleges give a higher weightage to Quant scores?

    eg. If i want to pursue an MS in CS, and have a score of only 154 in verbal, will it affect my chances of getting in, even with a good score in quant of 168.

    Also, my essay score is pretty good, i got a 5.5/6. Will that in any way help compensate for my low verbal score?

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 20, 2013 at 2:20 pm #

      Hey Karishma!

      At that range I don’t think it matters so much. I’d focus on other parts of your app, especially your SoP. Solid writing there and a 5.5 on the AWA should work well to give the adcoms confidence. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  10. James September 11, 2013 at 9:25 am #

    Chris,

    It looks like your table doesn’t match the concordance ETS table. Just an FYI.

    Thanks for the post.

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 11, 2013 at 11:22 am #

      Hey James! Good catch. Looks like the version I grabbed originally was an earlier release of the numbers from ETS. I’ve updated them to reflect the most recent percentiles, though they’ve shifted just a bit. 🙂

      Thanks!
      Chris S

  11. Adil September 10, 2013 at 6:50 pm #

    Hey Chris, a score of 152 you listed on your table as 52%. But on the ETS it is listed as 49%. Does ETS update their ranking or did I miss something?

    Thanks

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 11, 2013 at 11:23 am #

      Hey Adil! It’s fixed now. Looks like they updated it slightly. Thanks!
      Chris S

  12. Susan September 10, 2013 at 5:08 pm #

    Hi Chris,

    I just took the GRE and scored 158V/158Q, I want to apply for an MBA program at probably the top 10 business schools (Harvard, UPenn, Haas). GPA: 3.6.

    Should I take the GRE again? I’m not sure what the averages are for Business school, I see a lot of different #s. What score do I need to break in order for me to have a shot at these schools? I know there are many other factors that determine acceptance, but just score alone, what does my score mean?

    Thanks!

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 13, 2013 at 5:45 pm #

      Hey Susan!

      Your score is unfortunately a bit low for the top MBA programs. Check out this post for more help with what the GRE scores are for business programs. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  13. Jason September 3, 2013 at 7:25 am #

    Hi Chris,

    Thank you for this blog and your insight.

    GRE: V- 154 Q-158 AWA-3.5
    Undergrad GPA:3.35
    Extracurricular: Very involved; SGA President, Fraternity, etc.
    Work Experience: two years in government consulting

    What do you think about my chance getting into a top MBA program? My number one choice is Harvard!

    Thanks,

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 6, 2013 at 5:37 pm #

      Hey Jason! Check out this post for a better idea of GRE scores for MBA programs:

      GRE Scores for Business Programs

      Best,
      Chris S

  14. Rakesh August 30, 2013 at 11:35 pm #

    hey chris,
    i got a 304(158quant+146 verbal) on my gre recently.
    i want to pursue cs(as major) in ms.what are my chances of getting funding in these universities:-
    1.north carolina state university
    2.univ of north carolina,charlotte
    3.univ of tennessee
    4.east carolina university

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer September 6, 2013 at 5:22 pm #

      Hey Rakesh! I unfortunately don’t know what it will take to get funding in those schools, as even in the lower ranking unis, funding for CS can be hard to come by. Good luck though!

      Best,
      Chris S

  15. Erin August 27, 2013 at 1:25 pm #

    I just completed the GRE today and received a 154 in V. and a 147 in Q. Obviously, I do not know the scores for the AW section yet. I will admit due to an overly busy schedule I was not able to put in as much study time as I would have preferred. I feel as though I could have scored slightly better in the V, but as for the Q I know I gave it my all. I am in the process of applying to Library and Information Science programs some of which require the GRE and others do not. Interestingly enough the program that requires the GRE does not list any necessary scoring ranges. I have an unbeatable undergraduate GPA–4.0, so there is some disconnect here. I am not sure if my performance was a result of having too many irons in the fire, anxiety, or both, but my question would be do you think I should retest? I take myself very seriously as a student and do not want my scores to deter any admissions boards members.

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer August 30, 2013 at 1:45 pm #

      Hello Erin! Unfortunately those scores might deter more than a few admissions committees. I don’t know the level of schools you plan to apply to, but both your scores would probably fall below the average for the top 100 programs in your field. That’s not to say it’s guaranteed to be one way or another, as there are a lot of variables to be considered, but your score is not going to help you in any way. Your GPA is great, and if it’s from a top tier uni, even better. Check out this post for more help with the retake decision:

      Should I Retake the GRE?

      Best,
      Chris S

  16. Bruno August 18, 2013 at 6:16 pm #

    Hi, Chris,

    I would really like your feedback. I got 155V 168Q (still waiting for the AWA), but during my test the computer crashed 3 times! I think these problems damaged my verbal score (since when they let us continue, I had to read the texts again and lost lots of time). Do you think this verbal score will hurt my chances at a top10 in neuroscience/neuroeconomics? I’m a internatinal student, so maybe they don’t expect a high verbal score, but I don’t know exactly how this works.

    Thanks!

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer August 23, 2013 at 1:55 pm #

      Hey Bruno! That’s really terrible. I read about this happening to others and those people reached out to ETS to reschedule a test. It’s a bit laborious convincing ETS that you deserve a free retake, but if you push hard enough, it might just work. Anyway, to your point, I can’t really say for certain how much the score considerations change based on your native language, I’m sure it varies from program to program, and even case to case. Reach out to the schools you’re interested and see if they can shed some light. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

    • Michael August 26, 2013 at 9:53 am #

      Hi Chris,

      Do you have any hard data on school reported GRE scores for Masters vs PhD students in public policy/admin? It is hard to discern this from sites I have looked at. I got my master’s many years ago and am looking to pursue a PhD in the field. I recently took the GRE after a pretty intensive focus on the quant. Unfortunately, effort was not reflected in my score (Q156). I was shooting for 75th percentile, which seemed like a good cut off point. At this point, I am not sure I want to re-endure the torture of the test, to try for extra 2-3 points in quant (I took GRE a little over year ago with minimal prep and received a Q155).

      Any ideas, suggestions, appreciated. Verbal is not a problem for me (V170) but sense I get is admcoms value quant scores much more for these programs.

      Thanks.

      • Chris Swimmer
        Chris Swimmer August 30, 2013 at 2:15 pm #

        Hey Michael! Unfortunately almost all data on GRE scores isn’t hard, but some kind of conjecture. In my series on GRE scores, I’ve come up with a way to figure out a likely range of scores, but even then it’s still just doing the best I can with the limited information provided. Just a quick look at some of the top programs from Public Administration from my GRE Scores for Elite Universities post shows that you’d fall into the range of appropriate scores. This however is a melange of Masters/PhD level, so your quant should be higher than what you see in the average, since you’ll be expected to do more research. Unfortunately I can’t say one way or another about retaking it. All I can say is that not all studying is equal. I wouldn’t count yourself out of a better quant score. Studying for the GRE isn’t about being intensive it’s about being focused on reducing your weaknesses. 🙂

        Good luck in your applications!

        Best,
        Chris S

  17. Shivu Gururaj August 14, 2013 at 8:26 am #

    Hello, Please suggest me possible universities for my profile for MS IN CS fall 2014. It will majorly help me decide.

    Gre=299( verbal-146, quant-153) [not taking GRE again]
    awa-3.5
    toefl- expecting 90
    10th= 94.88%
    12th=87.5%
    Engineering (CSE) 72.2% with no backlogs [cgpa-3.75/4]
    [college- BMS Institute Of Technology (vtu)]

    working for Oracle Financial Services Software from august2013.

    ExtraCurriculars:

    1.Author of One research paper published on “international journals”

    2. Author of One technical paper *presented* in national conference

    3.Brand ambassador for “cognizant technology solutions”

    4. Campus ambassador for “springFest” iit_kharagpur

    5. Social work = currently member of civil defence , government of karnataka. (also have 5 days training certificate along with membership certificate)

    8.Android and windows phone app developer.published one application on respective platforms on Microsoft and Samsung official websites.

    10.Cordinated and organized few events in college
    and I was the Official Broucher Designer for our college fest

    11. Working for an NGO which helps school students education.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer August 16, 2013 at 11:48 am #

      Hey Shivu! That’s quite a lot you’ve got going for you! I can’t recommend any universities in specific for you to go after, but rather offer some advice. Really think hard about what you want to do after grad school. “CS” isn’t specific enough. Life goals, ambitions, etc. Know all of that about yourself. Then start looking at CS programs (US News is a good place to start) in depth and you’ll see which program can get you where you want to go. I’d also check out the forums online, search for other people interested in the same area and you’ll find a wealth of information. Hope this helps!

      Best,
      Chris S

  18. kalyani August 6, 2013 at 6:53 am #

    hi..
    I am planning to do MS in top universities from us. I took my gre today, n got V-140 and Q-160 n now waiting for the A score. what do u think? should i try for the second attempt? or shud i send this score? Because i am taking my BTECH degree in civil engineering from the very prestigious college and even my cgpa is 8.01 out of 10 where topper is of 8.50. and many people say that for civil the competition is less. so shud i try with this score?

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer August 9, 2013 at 4:18 pm #

      Hey Kalyani! That verbal score is definitely a bit on the low side and might give some adcoms pause, but it’s tough to say for certain since an application is a lot more than just a GRE score (and your undergrad GPA). Check with the programs directly to see if they can shed some light for you. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  19. Pawan July 29, 2013 at 7:07 am #

    Hi,
    I’m planning for MS in Aerospace Engineering. Took my GRE today and scored 310 (Q-158, V-152) awaiting the AW. Is it good enough to get into any of the top 10 colleges for fall 2014?
    CBSE 10th – 91.2%
    CBSE 12th – 95.4%
    and a CPGA of 9.24/10 of the first 3 years (one more year to go).
    Any help is appreciated.

  20. JN July 24, 2013 at 9:28 am #

    Hi 🙂 I’m a student looking to apply to a masters program in political science. I took it one year ago and it’s time to decide to take it once more before I start applying to MA programs in the coming months. I scored a 156V, 155Q, and a 5 in the writing section. I feel like if I do take the time to write another exam, I feel the score I might obtain at best will only be marginally better. At the same time, I feel like it’s taking a risk because I may score lower than a 5 in the writing section. I feel like my scores are on the fence when it comes to the right course of action to take. Any advice?

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer July 26, 2013 at 5:57 pm #

      Hey JN! Since you’ve got a couple months, you should commit to studying for a certain period of time and then try a few practice tests. If you see an increase in score (even if slight!), then dedicate yourself to studying more and then sign up for the test. There’s not much to lose. You could also sign up for Magoosh Premium, since we have a 5 point increase guarantee! 😉

      Best,
      Chris S

  21. Baller30389 July 17, 2013 at 6:31 pm #

    Hello, Chris,

    I am very interested in your feedback. I took the GRE last year and earned a 149 in Verbal, a 152 in Quant, and a 5.0 in AW. After months of studying long and hard (with numerous practice exams – including the ETS practice exam), I took the GRE again. I received the same exact scores – a 149 in Verbal, a 152 in Quant, and a 5.0 in AW.

    The test I took this year was after I spent many hours studying, and after I scored above 70th percentile in all categories on numerous practice exams (including the ETS practice tests).

    I had a decent undergraduate GPA of a 3.81, and I have two years of solid work experience (it will be three years when I begin a graduate program). I’m interested in applying to part-time business schools (all of the schools I’m looking at denote that they want their applicants to have a cumulative GRE score of 75th percentile or above).

    Do you think I should take the GRE again?! Or, is it not worth it since I received the same exact scores both times (without studying for the first time and with a lot of studying for the second time)?

    Thank you in advance for your feedback!

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer July 26, 2013 at 5:54 pm #

      Hello! If the schools explicitly state they expect your score to be in the 75th percentile or above, then you should try to get as close to that as possible! While it may be disheartening to study and still not increase your score, remember that how you study is just as important as how long you study! Check out these resources for more help:

      Best GRE Books
      GRE Study guides
      Ultimate GRE Guide

      Good luck!
      Chris S

  22. Yasir July 1, 2013 at 10:09 am #

    Hi,

    I am planning for admission in the Next spring (Jan 14). But i am not able to get any slots for writing the GRE Computer Based test before November. So , i wanted to know can i start applying to colleges now itself and send the scores later. Will that be considered like the normal process? Because if i apply in November, then it’d have already crossed the deadline for most of the colleges.

    Please suggest.
    Thanks

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer July 3, 2013 at 1:15 pm #

      Unfortunately most universities will consider your application incomplete without the scores and so when the deadline passes you won’t have completed applications. My recommendation is to reach out to the admissions committees of the schools you want to apply to and let them know your dilemma. Hopefully they can work something out for you. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S

  23. bostonmaine June 16, 2013 at 9:51 pm #

    Does this mean a perfect verbal score on the new GRE is considered less of an achievement compared to the old GRE, and a perfect quant score a greater achievement? Did the verbal section become easier and the quant harder?

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer June 19, 2013 at 3:35 pm #

      You got it right! It was a much greater accomplishment to get a perfect score on the verbal of the old GRE. Conversely, it is much more difficult to get a perfect math score on the new GRE. Luckily schools know this as well. 😀

      Chris

  24. Arnab April 24, 2013 at 10:38 am #

    Hi… recently I gave GRE and scored 302 ( Q 155, V 147, AW – 3) . I want to do MS in USA, but only when I get a scholarship in any form, otherwise it won’t be possible for me bcoz of my weak financial aid. My scores uptill now are 10th – 83%, 12th – 82.6% , BE – 72.64% ( C.E. stream) , currently working in a software firm as Web Developer and have 2.8 yrs of experience. Do I have any possibility to have
    any good institution for MS so that after my degree completion I can easily get a job there? Beside this, I came to know about integrated PhD from other sources, which includes MS(1.5 yrs) + PhD (2.5 yrs) thus overall making 4yrs course and heard its easy to get scholarship in PhD programme as compared to MS. I am preferring for MS but if that can’t be done ( may be bcoz of financial lagging or academical results ) then I will go for the later i.e. PhD. Please guide me.

    • Chris Swimmer
      Chris Swimmer July 3, 2013 at 1:14 pm #

      While many things in life can be made on a financial basis, I really strongly disagree with making education decisions purely on financial reasons. It’s certainly easier to get scholarships for your PhD, but remember that getting your PhD is not the same thing as getting a masters. You have to really want a PhD to survive the rigors of the program. I’m not saying don’t go for it, just make sure you know what you’re getting into. Additionally, the requirements for GRE scores will be even more stringent in PhD programs than masters. It might worthwhile to look into retaking the GRE. 🙂

      Best,
      Chris S


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