Okay, okay, I know that the arts and humanities encompasses quite a wide swath of concentrations, from studio art to philosophy, but that’s how the ETS likes to lump them into one group and so I guess there’s a common thread in there somewhere. For these programs, the importance of the GRE ranges from vital to negligible, but if you’re here reading this page, I can assume that you actually care about what scores you’ll need.
Anyway, here’s the score data from the ETS chart providing the average GRE scores for majors based on survey data collected from test takers.
GRE Scores for Arts and Humanities Programs: Intended
|Arts and Humanities (General)||156||150|
|Arts—History, Theory, and Criticism||157||151|
|Arts—Performance and Studio||153||151|
|English Language and Literature||157||149|
|Foreign Languages and Literatures||156||151|
The scores above are those of test-takers intending to pursue graduate work in that field. What does “intended” mean? It simply means that that these are the average scores of people planning on applying to graduate school in a specific area.
GRE Score Range for Arts and Humanities Programs
Using a scale drawn from the limited score data in the US News & World Report’s report on graduate schools, here’s the range of average scores you could expect:
GRE Scores for Arts and Humanities Programs by Rank
|Specialty||Program Rank #1-10: Verbal||Program Rank #1-10: Quantitative||Program Rank #11-50: Verbal||Program Rank #11-10: Quantitative||Program Rank #51-100: Verbal||Program Rank #51-100: Quantitative|
|Arts and Humanities (General)||165-169||156-160||162-166||152-156||159-163||149-153|
|Arts—History, Theory, and Criticism||166-170||157-161||163-167||153-157||160-164||150-154|
|Arts—Performance and Studio||162-166||157-161||159-163||153-157||156-160||150-154|
|English Language and Literature||166-170||155-159||163-167||151-155||160-164||148-152|
|Foreign Languages and Literature||165-169||157-161||162-166||153-157||155-159||150-154|
If you are viewing this chart on a mobile device and cannot see all of the columns for schools ranked #1-50, try turning your device horizontally or view this page on the web.
GRE Scores: 50th/70th/90th Percentiles
You can learn more about percentiles in this score percentiles post, but for quick reference, 50th percentile scores are average, 70th percentile is considered good, and 90th percentile is considered great.
|Arts and Humanities (General)||156||161||167|
|Arts—History, Theory, and Criticism||157||162||168|
|Arts—Performance and Studio||153||158||164|
|English Language and Literature||157||162||168|
|Foreign Languages and Literatures||156||157||167|
|Arts and Humanities (General)||150||151||158|
|Arts—History, Theory, and Criticism||151||152||159|
|Arts—Performance and Studio||151||152||159|
|English Language and Literature||149||150||157|
|Foreign Languages and Literatures||151||152||159|
What Can We Take Away from Arts and Humanities Programs’ Average GRE Scores?
Note that it could very well be that the methodology used here doesn’t apply to creative programs performance and visual arts, as the GRE scores could be flat across all tiers of scores (since GRE scores are probably relatively unimportant).
The scores of philosophy program applicants are some of the highest of any group, pushing the top program averages to near-perfect levels. For English applicants, it’s no surprise how high the verbal scores are, though scores below those of philosophy students might be a relief to some. 🙂
Remember that you should bear in mind the relative importance of the GRE for your program. The GRE score for history programs is likely going to be weighed a lot differently than if you’re pursuing some kind of performance masters.
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