Strategies for skipping GRE problems for the GRE quant and verbal sections

Tyler York
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The GRE is one of the only standardized graduate school admissions exams where you can skip questions – a key allowance that you should do your best to take advantage of. In this episode with Clay Daniel, founder of Clayborne Test Prep and Tutoring, he shares his strategies for skipping, and how they differ on the GRE quant and the GRE verbal.

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Full Strategies for skipping GRE problems for the GRE quant and verbal sections video transcript:

Welcome to GRE snacks micro episodes about the GRE exam and graduate school admissions. I'm Tyler, founder of achievable. Our $199 GRE course includes everything you need to ace your GRE: full textbook, tons of questions and full practice exams. You can try it out for free at and the code podcast gets you 10% off at check out. And that's how you know that this is life and live with me today is Clay. Daniel, I found her Claiborne and claimed you on just give a quick in church about yourself as well. Sure, I tell her I'm straight to be here on play Daniel, I started Claiborne about 13 years ago after being in test prep for a few years before that and teach in the classroom as well. I love education love to help. You didn't come unlock the puzzle of test like the GRE and the puzzle of their own minds on. It's kind of, kind of like a puzzle and it's a rewarding

Boarding process to help ell students, reach their goals. And in that process,

Yeah exactly. That's great. Well I am I'm excited today to talk to you eat. And we're going to have a fun topic which has strategies for skipping the GRE is unique, right? It's one of the only state who dies test that you can skip questions in. This is actually a big gift, like it can help you in a lot of ways and make the test, if not a good bit, if not easier. Because you supposed to answer a question, you can really help you kind of prioritizing and give you a little bit. Less anxiety, should going through it because you're getting through the stuff that's easy. And then going back to the stuff is hard. Late already know, but I'd love to hear from you both for the Quan in the verbal. Kind of what are your strategies for skipping? Like, when do you tell people to skip questions? And you know why? And then also, if we have time like strategies for kind of coming back around again and saw the new ones that you did Scare definitely, it's a fascinating question.

Because there are so many dimensions to it, right? Even before we go to the Quan on the verbal. If it'd be a good review, I think for for listeners just to remind them that the GRE is also an Adaptive chess sets that the second verbal and the second Quant section that you see are there. Difficulty is based on the attitude that you demonstrated on the first one first verbal section bring up with skipping because

Ideally, and this is what this is, what you do hoping for it. We always tell her soon as you want a really hard second section, that's a great time. If you order of the Miss thinking, I'll let store the kitchen sink at them myself. Even if we think about, you have to consider that it may become even more importance on that second one, the second Quant section as you face even increasingly difficult problem. So, I think that's an important bit of background.

I thought you're going to say just one important distinction just for anyone listening between the GRE in the GMAT is that the GRE is adaptive by section soda, daps one time between your two sections for the verbal into sections, for Quan the GMAT adopts adaptions sees me every single question. And that's part of the reason why you can't skip. So just so, you know, like when you are skipping on the GRE, you are not harming yourself necessarily and less. Obviously, you never answer the question at the, by the end of the time. There is no wrong answer, penalty. And so, when we say skipping, we don't mean skipping forever. Right by the time I worked here at 25% off.

yeah, so I'm able to talk about the verbal, then first that be

You mentioned the uniqueness of the GRE in in a number of ways and standardized test tend to have some sections that go easier to harder and some that don't the GRE doesn't necessarily follow that in a linear way. For either verbally or Quant. Here's what you can keep in mind though, not so much a linear increasing difficulty, as you go. Verbal section. You're going to see different types of questions. Just to let folks know that I will see text completion. Feelings are one or two or three blanks will see sentence equivalence similar to text completion filling in the blank between two synonyms that both fill in the blank. And then there's a number of reading questions with different kinds of passages and there's a subset Capcom logic-based reading.

But think about those kinds of questions for a moment. Even if you've encountered them on a different task for can't imagine individual vocabulary based questions based on a single sentence.

You can imagine that those questions are typically going to be quicker to answer, then a reading question where you have to read the passage first before answering the questions, so I can be a little misleading to say where you've got about a minute-and-a-half on the verbal section per question because questions might average about 2 minutes per question. Where is the vocabulary base? One's more like one minute. So, right, one way to approach. Skipping is 2 questions first? Or at least the vast majority of them because they are kind of smaller bites. You know, how the name of this podcast GRE snacks. I have a few bites but that will require skipping because it's not the GRE isn't laid out such that you do all the fill-in-the-blanks first and then have all the readings.

That right, that's a major tool. Don't you think?

Yeah. Yeah I think an in particular so would you say then like just you're trying to do all the vocab questions first kind of regardless of like that the passage good question. You know, there's still range in difficulty. So it's a principle that you want to apply but like most test principles you don't apply it blindly or 100% of the time. There is still very own group sentences or even paragraph where you have three blind and they're going to take much longer than the one blank question.

There's going to be times where you look at the five, the five choices for one blank or, you know, the groups of three choices, for multi blank and say, either. Wow, I really know those words or wow, I've never seen those words in my life or you know some somewhere in between those two extremes.

So, those are also tools to keep in mind. Even within the category. Questions can be different and vocabulary can be different. But why not start there? At the very least.

Right. Yeah, Anna. And the only thing that is an advantage to is you know, if you have stayed 20 Questions, when you finish 10 of them already, like you're going to feel a bit better and you're going to get a better sense of pace, right? Last chunk, right? Because you might not know, you know, those longer reading comprehension questions night. There might be more of them later or less of them, pray forgiven passages. So yeah, that does make sense, West Acres going into the test, of course, are taking their whole selves with them. And that's when I just putting up brain on a popsicle stick and taking it in there to take the test, we're taking our our anxiety than our hopes, and our fears, and all of those things building confidence and giving yourself a sense of momentum.

Is a legitimate part of test strategy.

For sure, this isn't, how do you say the sounds? Good for the verbal. How do you approach the GRE Quant questions, right? It's probably Jerry Quan. I don't feel like you can just say, oh, there's two types and then do all the easy ones phrase. That's right. So I'm curious in case that the song. Yeah, it is a more complicated question. Their first, as a reminder, that, in addition to standard multiple choice, that we're all familiar with there are the, the quantity comparisons where you're comparing columns and there's ones, we have multiple answers, might be right. And then there's ones where you knew me, I can sure you fill in the answer, you don't get any multiple-choice. So are you sure? There's no way to make an educated guess at the work backwards from the answer choices? So, if you look in the mirror entry problem, and there's just that box at the bottom and you don't really know how to solve it.

Probably. Yes. But then there's the question of content more questions. There's a lot of number Sense on the GRE recognized out, how they all behave. That's a big part of geometry, their statistics. So a student should be aware of his or her strengths and weaknesses and that'll be a major tool for for skipping because no matter what, how well you prepared or how much you prepared for the GRE you're also bringing in your math backgrounds, whether you took a class in college last month and you haven't done this kind of math in 15 years, you're going to have

Some favorites that just kind of red chili. If he loved the way you think it's about knowing yourself.

Write 1 as you studying. You should also probably be getting feedback. Hopefully right on what you are good and bad at, right? Like at the weather taking practice exams, are using it to like to order one of those. One of the other prep courses, you should have some sense or even, you know, data about what you're good at and bad, that that can help inform your decisions. Some kinds of problems are kind of All or Nothing in the sense, that maybe there's a geometry formula that unlocks the whole problem. And if you forgot pie r squared, because you haven't done geometry, since 9th grade, you can remember Isaac and a straightforward Circle. Problem might just open up, self up to you.

Now, that's a Jew rather than ask if it's completely slipped in your evaluation of the question. You know, purses complicated algebra.

That's it is not prone to just a formula that can unlock the question.

So, that's important. Yeah.

Yan that mean said, you know, some of those questions I would also say there are definitely some questions where you can look at it and you can see like a long path to solving it but maybe not as short path, right. Like in for the new kind of like okay well I if I had three minutes to burn then yes I could do this but do I don't know if I have that on my favorite sayings about standardized testing or perseverance. And what a good quality that is in real life. But perseverance is actually a pretty bad teacher quality on the test. That's the last thing. You know, how long it takes that won't work out well for you and for

Yeah, yeah exactly. It's kind of your you're a lot better off getting as many things, right? As you can. And taking the coin, flip at the end on the, on the final one, if you don't have time, right? This is Ben, Jerry, snacks hosted by Tyler from achievable, with Clay. Daniel from Claiborne. You can try or achievable. Siri course for free at and use the code podcast to get 10% off at checkout.
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