Overview of GRE Verbal Section: Sentence Equivalence

The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is a test that is conducted for admission into a Graduate course or a management course, across the world. It is conducted all throughout the year in different test centers. Educational Testing Services (ETS) conduct the GRE, their official website is this: https://www.ets.org/gre.

The GRE is divided into three sections:

  1. Verbal Reasoning
  2. Quantitative Reasoning
  3. Analytical Writing

The test durations is for 3 hours and 45 minutes. The Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning each have 2 sections and each section has 20 questions. The Analytical Writing section has two topics that you need to write on. The score range for GRE Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning is 130-170; total score range is 260-340. Analytical Writing section is graded between 0-6.

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The verbal reasoning is further divided into three question types: Reading Comprehension (RC), Text Completion (TC) and Sentence Equivalence (SE).

In a Sentence Equivalence question, you will be given a text 1-3 lines long, and there will be one blank. There will be six answer choices and you must select two options among the six answer choices to form a meaningful and coherent sentence.  The two answer choices you choose must be similar in meaning. Your skill lies in understanding the sentence with one important word missing; you must gauge what the missing word can be based on the partial information presented in the sentence. 

You can expect about 8-9 sentence equivalence texts in both the Verbal Sections. You will not be given credit for partially correct answer i.e. if you choose one option which is correct and the second option you choose is incorrect, then you will not get credit for that question. You must choose both the correct options to form a sentence similar in meaning to get credit for a question. 

A typical sentence equivalence question looks like this:

Because it does not contain many pioneering insights, one would stereotype the movie as ………………..

A) orthodox

B) eccentric

C) original

D) trifling

E) conventional

F) innovative

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