Reading Vocabulary in Context: Where Should I Start?

Choosing articles at random from The New York Times, The New Yorker, and The Atlantic Monthly is much like walking straight into a vast, dense forest and hoping you will find a path through the woods.

To find insightful, nuanced articles, one has to contend with the weeds and underbrush (to continue the bosky metaphor) of articles based mainly on ephemera — Hollywood happenings or current events — and which provide little reflection from their respective authors.

Avoid the political tracker, the latest news, and any scandal (you can think of them as the bears in the woods). Even news on the Middle East, which has seen an historic uprising, has also seen a flurry of articles that deal more with reporting the latest happening than providing an in-depth analysis.

However, just because a piece falls under one of the above doesn’t mean it’s always made up of easily digestible bits, free of any intimidating words. Here is a political opinion piece that makes a nuanced, albeit impassioned, point.

In general, if there are trails in this forest of reading, they are best found in the Science, Arts, and Literature Essays. Perhaps the trail metaphor is a bit misleading — even paradoxical — for these articles are difficult. And they should be — if you are prepping for the Revised GRE, you want to challenge yourself with reading.

Improve your GRE score with Magoosh.

Challenging reading tends to be vocabulary-dense (and no, don’t think of vocabulary as weeds), insightful, and complex. Below are three criteria you want to have in mind when choosing articles to read.

Subject Matter

The more esoteric the better. After all, the new GRE does not choose passages based on familiarity. This week, there is a profile of Helene Grimaud, a classical pianist known for her unorthodox style and bold interpretations of the usual suspects from the classical oeuvre.

The piece discusses how she approaches learning pieces and, on a deeper level, how she interprets classical music — what is “proper,” what is innovative, and what is simply a butchering of the composer’s work. Uh, you still with me? Forcing yourself outside of your comfort zone will help you immensely on test day.

Even seemingly prosaic topics, such as maple syrup, can, in the right hands, become a fascinating exploration of history.


If you become accustomed to reading longer articles, your brain will develop more reading endurance. Because the new GRE is a marathon and not a sprint, you will want to practice improving your endurance, or your ability to endure long pieces, as it were.

Many feature articles from The New Yorker or The Atlantic Monthly can run ten pages. You don’t have to read the entire article in one sitting (remember: if you are just stringing words together, you are not really reading).  Understanding what you read and taking an interest, as much as possible, will help).

A New Yorker feature about a rogue scientist unraveling the mystery of the Neanderthals is a great place to start. It’s nine pages long, reflects on our existence and that of our erstwhile, hirsute relative, and contains GRE vocabulary words — many you’ve seen before; many you haven’t.


You don’t want an article that simply reports the facts. You do want an article that offers an opinion or viewpoint. Almost all the longer GRE passages fall into this category. Better still, a viewpoint that is complex and nuanced will challenge you to really think about what a writer is saying. This is a skill you will definitely need on the GRE.


Rumor has it that the GRE takes already complex passages and makes them even more complex. Therefore, try to find articles in which the author favors long, winding sentences, chock full of big ideas and big words. Who knows —maybe that author works for ETS.

Choosing Your Own Articles

So venture forth, and see which fascinating piece of writing you can unearth from the forest of magazines and periodicals.

P.S. Ready to improve your GRE score? Get started today.

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63 Responses to Reading Vocabulary in Context: Where Should I Start?

  1. Hooman June 23, 2019 at 8:05 am #

    Can reading research papers be helpful for GRE?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert June 23, 2019 at 1:41 pm #

      Hi Hooman!

      Good question! I wouldn’t go out of my way to do that reading if your real aim is reading GRE words and doing reading somewhat similar to what you’ll see test day. Academic writing is really uneven in terms of number of vocabulary words. And it is inscrutable for reasons different from GRE passages. GRE passages are dense and seemingly inscrutable; much of academic writing is simply inscrutable.

      However, if you are already reading these journals, then it wouldn’t hurt to be on the lookout for GRE vocab words. 🙂

  2. DEEPAK GUPTA May 18, 2019 at 12:45 pm #

    Hi Chris,

    I am giving the GRE in a month July 2019, can you suggest me topics from where I should start reading the articles.


    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert May 19, 2019 at 11:53 am #

      Hi Deepak!

      If you’re planning to take the GRE in a month, I recommend checking out our 1-month study plan. It will cover all of the Quant and Verbal concepts you’ll need to know. 🙂

      I also see that you’re a Premium student, so this will help guide you through our materials and others that we recommend. 😀

  3. pramod May 16, 2018 at 11:44 pm #

    Hi magoosh/Chris,

    Im really into sports, do you think its a good idea to read sports blogs or related articles as a practise, if so, can you suggest a few.


    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert May 17, 2018 at 1:49 pm #

      Hi Pramod,

      In general, you need to find articles that are challenging to read, include advanced vocabulary and stretch your reading comprehension skills. Personally, I’m not familiar with any sports writing that meets these criteria, but perhaps another reader will comment with their ideas!

      I’ll also note that it’s a good idea to challenge yourself with articles that are outside of your comfort zone. The GRE reading passages will cover a wide variety of topics, and it’s a good idea to become comfortable with many different genres. Our Article of the Month Roundup includes articles that will help you to improve your vocabulary and reading comprehension skills. The articles are a bit outdated now, but they are still high-quality GRE-like reading material!

  4. Aditya Dash May 3, 2018 at 8:42 pm #

    Hi, can you suggest me Indian magazines or newspapers helpful for improving my vocabulary skills, since I don’t like reading on a digital platform?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert May 4, 2018 at 1:42 pm #

      Hi Aditya,

      I’m afraid that I’m not very familiar with the print magazines and newspapers available in India, though others might be able to respond and help you out! A general guideline is that the reading material should be challenging and introduce you to new words. I’m sure that there are many such magazines in India that I’m not aware of!

      However, I also encourage you to think about the GRE test format. Are you taking the computer-based or paper-based test? Most people take the computer-based tests these days, which means that you will need to get used to reading on a screen. I understanding that reading on a digital platform is not as comfortable as reading on paper (I also prefer paper!), but if you are taking the computer-based test, you will need to get plenty of practice reading on a screen! You don’t have to do all of your reading on a screen, but keep this in mind as you search for magazines and journals 🙂

  5. Gagan June 11, 2016 at 5:45 am #

    Hey Magoosh,

    I was thinking that I read one long article from ‘The Atlantic’ and ‘The New Yorker’ every day till my GRE (planning to give it sometime in August). Do you think that will help improve my verbal skills? I have already given GRE once, but scored poorly in verbal section (150) (overall 317).

    What else should I do? I am planning to get 160+ in Verbal section.
    I have taken the Magoosh GRE six months plan, and the score predictor is giving me 148-153 in verbal. (54/46)

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert June 11, 2016 at 9:20 am #

      Hi Gagan,

      That’s definitely a good idea! Besides reading every day and studying the Magoosh flashcards (no more than about 20 per day), here are some resources that will help you improve on RC and TC:

      GRE RC Strategies

      To help you on your journey to GRE Reading Comprehension domination, I am giving you some resources that will help you to succeed. Each one tackles a different aspect of reading comprehension, and if you want to read actively and understand the passage in front of you, dive into these resources:

      Introduction to Reading Comprehension (Strategies and Pacing)
      How to Approach Questions
      Example of How a Passage is Outlined
      Identifying Patterns in Passages
      Pacing Strategies
      Active Reading Strategies for the GRE

      Reading Recommendations

      In addition to practicing the strategies explained in these resources, you should be reading all the time to prepare for the GRE. Read. Read. Read. This will help you to learn new words, see different passage structures, and become familiar with the forms and styles employed by authors 🙂 As you read, make flashcards of the vocabulary words that you don’t know. Pause every so often, and recap the main message in your own words. Here are some suggested reading materials:

      The New York Times
      The Economist
      Arts & Letters Daily
      The New Yorker

      For some specific articles suggestions, I’d recommend browsing through our “GRE Article of the Month” series. About once a month, Chris selects an GRE-level article and provides both GRE vocabulary for you to focus on as you read, as well as a brief discussion of the piece.

      And if you would rather read books than articles, check out this post for fiction and non-fiction book recommendations!

      For tips on how to use these reading sources to learn really vocabulary in context, check out these blog posts:

      Vocabulary in Context
      Reading Vocabulary in Context: Where Should I Start?

      Truly, reading is the BEST way to improve your reading comprehension skills, I promise!

      Pacing on GRE RC

      In terms of improving your speed on GRE RC passages, I’d recommend first practicing without the timer–slow down, and try to truly understand the passage. You might think that time is lost when you read the passage too carefully, but in reality most time is wasted on questions that you don’t know the answer to because you read the passage too quickly. So step one, slow down, take notes on the passage, practice without the timer. Practice using all of the strategies you have learned, and don’t pay attention to the clock.

      Next, once you feel your accuracy is improving on RC questions, start using the timer again. The more confident you become in your reading skills, the faster you will be able to answer questions.

      Text Completion and Sentence Equivalence

      Text completion (TC) questions can be difficult and hard to understand, clearly! Fortunately, we have some great resources to help you understand what to do.

      On top of knowing vocabulary words, you need to be able to read a passage and decipher its meaning. Part of improving will be based on learning new words and part of improving will be based on learning about signal words in English that tell you about the relationship of ideas. Words like “because” or “however” or “more than” tell you about the relationship of ideas in a sentence and these are crucial to choosing the correct word to fill-in a blank.

      You want to make sure that you read passages that are similar to the ones you will find on the GRE. Some of the best places to look for good articles and writing are at The New York Times and The New Yorker. The style, tone, and level of writing will be very similar to what you will see on the test, so make it a point to read these news sources—and/or others of their caliber—everyday.

      Besides that, strategy is key! We have many blog posts that outline exactly how you should be tackling text completions and give some great examples (of course, that’s beside what’s in our lesson videos!). You can see those here:

      GRE Text Completion

    • RAJ SHAH June 13, 2018 at 9:33 am #

      If you like to read from paper, try to read from, THE HINDU or many people also refer it as HINDUSTAN TIMES, editorial section on page 11-12 is very good, and will particularly help you in increasing GRE vocabulary. Here is the website

  6. Tanmayee Pathre April 13, 2016 at 4:28 am #

    Hi Chris! I have a good number of National Geographic Magazines with me. Are these good resources to start preparing for Verbal?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert April 14, 2016 at 12:40 am #

      Hi Tanmayee,

      Good question! While those magazines won’t have the kind of long, complex, sometimes twisted sentence structure the GRE might have, you can definitely learn new vocabulary and expose yourself to high quality English. I would definitely encourage you to read them as part of your studies. 🙂

  7. Jatin Kashyap January 1, 2016 at 10:42 am #

    Hi Chris, once again, great article! I am bit reluctant to take the pain of collecting the words that I comes across while reading an online article, to save myself from irritation which leads to give up from the piece of reading. So can you please suggest any software by using which I can store words in a collection instantly, either by double clicking the word, while reading the article, without an interruption, and then coming back to all the new words that I gained in my collection to drill them, either by making flash card, in more deeper way.
    Thank you.

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert February 7, 2016 at 1:12 pm #

      Hi Jatin,

      Sorry for this late reply!

      There aren’t a lot of good programs to do this smoothly, unfortunately. If you have Chrome as your browser, you can add some extensions. Some of our favorites are Lingualy, CravingWords, and Vocabulary in Context, so you could check those out! I also like Anki as a flashcard software, but that is definitely not automatic and will require work on your part.

      I hope that helps a little! 🙂

  8. Akshay December 18, 2015 at 7:50 pm #

    Hi chris,
    i just gave my first attempt and i was hit really hard. i dint even manage 300. my target is 320. My verbal is very weak quant is pretty strong but falling short on time in quant. what study plan do you suggest me to take to improve my score.

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert February 8, 2016 at 10:01 am #

      Hi Akshay,

      I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t reach your target score. If you’re looking to really improve your verbal score, I recommend using our “3 Month Verbal-Focused GRE Study Schedule” as a guide 🙂

      In terms of pacing, in general, speed comes with accuracy, so the first thing you need to do is improve your accuracy. This means you should keep practicing questions, but don’t pay attention to the timer. Instead, take your time to answer the question correctly. This will help you build your math skills. Once you see your accuracy improving, then start to worry about your pace, but not before.

      As your accuracy improves, you’ll want to start practicing different pacing strategies. You should know exactly how much time to spend on each question, and when to skip a question and return to it later if you have the time. We discuss different pacing strategies for both the Quant and Verbal section in the following posts of our blog 😀

      Pacing on the GRE Math Sections
      Pacing on the GRE Verbal Sections

      Definitely check out the posts, as well as the Verbal-Focused study plan I mentioned above 😀

      Happy studying!

  9. den led August 14, 2015 at 7:26 pm #

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  10. Premie August 14, 2015 at 7:32 am #

    Hi Chris

    I plan to build my vocab for GRE in 4-5 months by reading the types of article you suggested in addition to using Barron’s 1100 GRE words.

    My question is about how to approach a long passage with unfamiliar vocabs. Since looking up all meanings is time consuming and disrupt the process of comprehension, do you have any suggestions for reading such passages effectively? That is, to what extent should I limit the temptation to look up meanings? And is it better to read the whole paragraph before looking up meanings of unfamiliar words( in contrary to consulting dictionaries every time unfamiliar words pop up )?(Sorry if these questions have already been asked somewhere on the blog, I couldn’t find one)

    By the way your GRE book reviews are very good. Thanks for all guidances!

    • Premie August 14, 2015 at 7:41 am #

      Sorry, another question…

      Do you recommend finishing the whole Barron’s 1100 words in 2 or 3 months? The planned 46 weeks feel too long for me…

      Thank you

  11. Sneha July 9, 2015 at 7:24 pm #

    Hi Chris,

    Thanks for the lovely blog. I have been using Magoosh for preparing for GRE since past 2 months. I request you to please tell me what all can i read from in order to improve my vocabulary and reading skills.I read editorials from New york times and the the economist.
    I have been using the vocabulary builder app of Magoosh to improve vocabulary. Do i need to use GRE Flashcard app to improve my vacabulary further? I have gre in mid-August.
    Your suggestions are appreciated.


  12. PRAFULL SHARMA April 14, 2014 at 3:59 pm #

    Magoosh flashcard is unique. Honestly, I’ve become addicted to Magoosh flashcards, its amazing to learn around 50 words a day without feeling enervated, and that is possible only because of your unique vocabulary flashcards. Thank you Magoosh.

  13. PRAFULL SHARMA April 14, 2014 at 3:52 pm #

    Hello Chris. You people are doing great job, Magoosh carries everything one needs to prepare for the GRE.

    • Chris Lele
      Chris Lele April 15, 2014 at 10:59 am #

      Thanks for the kind words 🙂

  14. Yen June 10, 2013 at 12:16 am #

    Could you guys come up with a reading list per week, or an article per day… and send to subscribers? That would be nice

    • Chris Lele
      Chris Lele June 10, 2013 at 12:55 pm #

      Hi Yen,

      Thanks for the suggestion :)! For now, we are doing an article of month post. Making it more frequent would make the weekly blog a bit crowded, with Vocab Wednesday and all. For a resource that gives a daily dosage of difficult articles, is excellent.

      Hope that helps!

  15. Diksha June 9, 2013 at 4:46 pm #

    I am following your Verbal and math focused study plans. It mentions to learn new words – 10/20 each day….. fine so far….

    But then when I read classics like “Gone with the Wind” and even news stories – I come across many more words in the same day that I have no clue about and that I should learn. So the number of words everyday is more than 50 at times and I know even you would agree that it is too high for anyone to effectively learn and recall.

    What should I do?


  16. Kenny August 19, 2012 at 3:46 pm #

    Hi Chris,

    I am interested in science.

    Do you think I should read more in science articles, which is easier for me to understand? Or do you think I should read those articles with different topic, like business, art and social science, in which I am less familiar with?

    Further more, do you think reading opinions pages like the SundayReview in NYT ( is also good?


    • Chris Lele
      Chris August 21, 2012 at 2:47 pm #

      Good question!

      I would definitely focus on less scientific-oriented passages. You know, those ones that gush on about the latest Virginia Woolf biography. Reading outside your comfort zone will definitely help test day, esp. if you end up getting a passage on the use of foreshadowing by Virginia Woolf :).

      As for opinion pages, I’d recommend them more for SAT students; the SAT is filled with first-person narratives. For the GRE, I’d focus more on articles from the aforementioned fields.

      Hope that helps 🙂

      • Amr Fouda August 27, 2012 at 2:39 pm #

        I have a question which baffle me !! when i get a new word to learn and open the dictionary to find it most of words have lot of meaning and can use in different context with different meanings,so should i study all the meaning of each word but this will take long time or there is some meanings are rarely used and others are popular..i hope you can help

        • Chris Lele
          Chris August 29, 2012 at 4:58 pm #

          This is a tough question to answer :).

          See if I take a word such as ‘set’, which has hundreds of definitions, then of course learning all those different definitions would take forever. Usually, for GRE level words there should be, at most, three different definitions.

          As for using the word across the different contexts, get a feel for the contexts. Let’s say I use the word ‘debase’ – seeing it used in several different example sentences (you can use ‘wordnik’ to do so), should give you a strong feel for the word.

          Hope that helps!

  17. Virginia July 9, 2012 at 8:28 am #

    Thanks, Chris!

    • Chris Lele
      Chris July 9, 2012 at 3:30 pm #

      You are very welcome :).

  18. Sivabalan Umapathy June 23, 2012 at 12:49 pm #

    Honestly – this blog is awesome! Thanks Chris! (btw I just raised a question on this front from my magoosh account – and hours later landed on your blog

    Your points about getting out of “Knowledge comfort zone” is a key one.

    • Chris Lele
      Chris June 26, 2012 at 2:39 pm #

      Great! I’m happy you’ve found the blog helpful!

      Let me know if you have any questions as you read through it :).

  19. Blue April 6, 2012 at 7:30 am #

    Thanks again Mr.Chris.Certainly it will help. Your vocab advices are working nicely. I am asking a lot of questions.Sorry for that. Would you please give me a complete guideline for AWA and which book to follow?

    • Chris Lele
      Chris April 6, 2012 at 9:41 am #

      Hi Blue,

      No problem :).

      For AWA, I’d recommend Barron’s. Follow that up by practicing on the essay prompt question bank available on the site.

  20. Blue April 4, 2012 at 5:30 pm #

    Thanks for the link. It will help me a lot to my preparation. Would u please give me a Math books review based on your own view point? which books are better and how to follow? I found your idea works on me. 😀

    • Chris Lele
      Chris April 5, 2012 at 2:46 pm #

      Hi Blue,

      For starting off, McGraw Hill math is very helpful. Magoosh also has all the math concepts nicely arranged. Book-wise Manhattan GRE is a good mix of concepts and practice questions.

      Hope that helps!

  21. Blue April 2, 2012 at 8:52 pm #

    I will let you know if it works well.

    Also i will ask u a question which is really irrelevant in this post but i have to ask that i need a strong step by step GRE math preparation guideline.I want to do better in GRE math.

    Would u please give me ” Chris’s step by step GRE Math preparation guideline?? 😛

    Thanks in advance.

    • Chris Lele
      Chris April 3, 2012 at 11:07 am #

      Hi Blue,

      Honestly, I cannot think of a better step-by-step plan then working through the Magoosh math video lessons and questions. Each question is tagged to a certain lesson video, so you do a few questions and, when you don’t know the answer, go to the pertinent lesson video.

      Below is our study guide that fleshes this out over a 3-month period:

      Hope that helps :).

  22. Blue April 1, 2012 at 12:47 am #

    At last i found a guy who is helping from heart. Yea his name is CHRIS. Thanks MR.CHRIS. I am fan of ur articles, youtube videos about GRE. Today i decided to start my GRE preparation and planing to take GRE test during September. I will be very happy if u give me a proper guideline for this journey.

    I am starting the journey with vocabulary building.Would u please give me some advices about step by step Vocabulary building? How can i start?

    • Chris Lele
      Chris April 2, 2012 at 12:03 pm #

      Hi Blue,

      Thanks for the kudos :).

      A good step-by-step approach is to take unfamiliar words you encounter in context and turn them into flashcards (you can always do so in e-form on – it’s great for smart phone users). Quiz yourself regularly on these words. Constantly reading and doing GRE exercises will help reinforce words.

      For a vocab book that offers a week-by-week approach, I recommend Barron’s 1100 Word You Need to Know.

      Let me know if that helps :).

  23. Abhishek March 23, 2012 at 12:27 am #

    Thanks Chris. Eagerly waiting for the blog post:)

    • Chris Lele
      Chris March 23, 2012 at 11:34 am #

      Working on it as we speak :).

      Should be up soon!

  24. Abhishek March 17, 2012 at 3:17 pm #

    Hi Chris,
    Your advisory articles on GRE vocabulary building and RC improvement are very helpful. These articles are helping me give a proper orientation to my study plans. I always wonder that what do efficient readers think while reading any passage? I mean, given the large availability of articles on different subjects, I generally end up reading quite a hefty lot by the end of the day but spend too little time analyzing or thinking more deeply over what I have read. So most of the times it just becomes a skimming exercise with no proper thought to the subject actually. Can you advise on what percent of the time should be spent in self questioning, reasoning and introspection on what we read on a daily basis. I would think that these should constitute major part of our reading habit in orfer to develop a proper understanding of the material. Would be glad if you could share your own reading style.


    • Chris Lele
      Chris March 19, 2012 at 12:27 pm #

      This is definitely a great question!

      Two readers can read the exact same passage and nearly identical speeds, but it is the way in which they are reading that counts.

      Constant skimming – something that most of us inveterately do on the Internet – has become the norm. However, as a GRE test taker you want to synthesize what you read, stopping every few minutes and asking yourself what you read. This process forces you to not only recall info. but to also make connections.

      Think of it this way – it is far better to read 20 pages this way vs. 100 pages in which you skim.

      That said, this is such a good question that it has inspired a blog post. Stay tuned, I should have one up in a couple of weeks that illustrates what I talk about in this post.

      Thanks again :).

  25. Aman March 17, 2012 at 9:32 am #

    Seems effective will try this one

    Thanks Chris

  26. Aman March 15, 2012 at 11:00 pm #

    Hey Chris,
    Sorry to bother you again but there is one more problem regarding reading comprehension which i forgot to include earlier .
    Its like this ,when i read a particular passage (for RC or generally ) loudly enough to be heard by me ,I am able to both germinate interest and keep on with my speed ,hence able to do the questions based on the passage .But ,when it comes to mock exam(in a examination center) as i am not allowed to speak, i loose interest and detour from the topic .

    I know this issue of mine is a bit abberation but i guess this is a very crucial aspect in GRE…….

    Please help me out ,as u always do….. 🙂

    • Chris Lele
      Chris March 16, 2012 at 12:06 pm #

      Not an aberration at all – I was just discussing this very issue with an SAT student.

      My advice: move your lips, sounding out the words to yourself. Nobody in the testing center will be bothered – unless they can’t stop staring at your lips (which is their problem, not yours) :).

  27. Aman March 15, 2012 at 4:31 am #

    Hi Chris ,

    Thanks for the update .I tried NY times earlier but articles are very prolonged and irksome ,i tried reading some but lost interest earlier and so, found it difficult to relate words with it.
    I guess may be i should try different category now.

    Anyways,thanks for your valuable support and advice.

    Keep helping us … 😀

  28. Chris Lele
    Chris March 14, 2012 at 12:27 pm #

    Hi Aman,

    Thanks for the kudos 🙂

    So by “interesting” I am not sure exactly what you mean. Everyone has different tastes. But let’s say you like sports. Read the sports section. If you like fashion, read the nytimes fashion section. If you are looking for heart-stopping action and constant suspense, then maybe John Grisham. Unfortunately John Grisham does not use any GRE words.

    Ultimately, GRE words usually pop up in sources that are slightly academic in bent. I enjoy reading some New Yorker extended pieces. I find them interesting – though not everyone agrees with me.

    Anyhow, make sure to do plenty of practice GRE questions as well, both to reinforce words you already know and to pick up news ones.

    Good luck!

  29. Aman March 14, 2012 at 4:57 am #

    Hey Chris, these are great for practice. BTW, I was going through your youtube channel, and it’s quite impressive… great work. From the time I started, it has become habit-forming; keep this good stuff up! 🙂

    I am facing some problems in the word list – I just started with your strategies on vocab. Can you tell a site where some INTERESTING articles could be found that contain GRE words? Actually, I’m taking my GRE in a month or so and lack in vocab. I found the relating method to be beneficial, so I thought to try to up my performance with this technique. Please help me…

    And thanks for providing these great video tutorials!

  30. Akshay December 26, 2011 at 8:21 am #

    good intersperselot of high level words.looks like i have to access dictionary for abomination and prosaic let alone read the NY times

    • Chris Lele
      Chris December 27, 2011 at 3:53 pm #

      Yes, you will definitely want to access the dictionary as much as possible. Even if you think you know a word from context, look up the word to see whether you are right. To assume your definition is correct is risky.

  31. shuddha November 7, 2011 at 6:23 am #

    hello,Chris….I am a member of your Premium program,Which I joined very recently and simply loved it…For vocabulary..I simply want to know is barron’s 3000 is still essential or is it required to learn less words than that?I am learning those words using a software called “Vocaboly” and its simply great also…But for reading comprehension…I am in trouble because sometimes its really very tough to keep pace with the article and worrying for time problem..Is New York times or New Workers and the economist or the atlantic enhance my reading skill dramatically or should I follow another way?I am looking for a very high score in both verbal and math part.That is why i am preparing very hard for the verbal part.Could you kindly give me some suggestion?I am from Bangladesh and I am a electrical engineering Final year student.If I maintain 90 percentile on verbal and 96-98 percentile on quantitative should I apply to Top universties like Texas A&M college station,UT Austin and UIUC,Georgia Tech,Ucla?
    Thank you

    • Chris Lele
      Chris November 7, 2011 at 4:02 pm #

      Hi Shudda,

      I would continue recommend reading articles but make sure you always do this in conjunction with learning words. So don’t just learn a bunch of Barron’s words without improving your knowledge of how these words function in a sentence.

      In the end a 90% for verbal is very difficult to attain. And since you are applying to electrical engineering, I really wouldn’t worry about your verbal score too much. Obviously the verbal score is important, but those schools are going to be focusing more on your quant score. As long as your verbal score is around 60% that should be competitive for those programs. More importantly those programs will look at your work experience.

      Still, I would continue working with the Magoosh product as well as the Vocaboly program, which looks like a fun way to learn vocab.

      Good luck!

  32. Kiran November 5, 2011 at 7:38 am #

    Hi christopher,

    Thanks a lot for this article. RC was the major hurdle for me when i appeared for GRE for the first time:(. Got only 410/800 in verbal. So gearing up to take up gre again. Found this post to be very useful.

    thanks and regards

    • Chris Lele
      Chris November 5, 2011 at 3:46 pm #


      Great, I’m happy these articles helped. Let me know how your reading goes.

  33. Sebastian November 4, 2011 at 7:06 am #

    Hi Chris, thanks for the posts!

    Btw, the hyperlink above,

    was actually hyperlinked to the maple syrup article.

    • Chris Lele
      Chris November 4, 2011 at 8:48 pm #

      Thanks, Sebastian! It should be fixed now.

  34. Aashish November 3, 2011 at 11:25 am #

    Thanks Chris. This is a great help in terms of vocabulary and also for reading practice.

    • Chris Lele
      Chris November 4, 2011 at 8:48 pm #

      You’re welcome, I’m glad I could help!

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