It takes months, days, and hours of studying every subject of the GRE prep books to prepare for the test. There are so many reasons to be overwhelmed on the actual test day that you may forget some of the things you need to prep and bring with you. Simply filling your brain with advanced vocabulary and several different math equations isn’t enough to know what to expect while taking the GRE. There are a few other things on test day that you need to know to pass the GRE successfully. So here are some tips and tricks you need to know for the GRE test day.
Our Tips For the GRE Test Day
Prepare the Day Before
The first point of our tips for the GRE starts with the morning of the test day. Your mind is going to be focused on nothing but passing the test and, of course, getting there, but there are a couple of things you should do the night before to give yourself some reassurance. The first is to make sure you are prepared to go to the correct testing center. There is nothing more upsetting than preparing to take the test and then not because you are at the wrong testing site.
Then you need to go through a list of all of the documents you need, such as a correct and current ID, the right admission ticket. A great way to prevent leaving these two highly essential items in the morning is to put them in a folder or a bag and put them in the car if you have one. That way, when you leave your home in the morning, you won’t have to worry about leaving it.
Next, you should eat a healthy and clean dinner. You don’t want to consume anything that will leave you sluggish and uncomfortable in the morning because the GRE test takes some time. Lastly, stop studying! Cramming last-minute words and formulas in your head won’t make you more confident in passing. It will just make you tired. Focus more on relaxing and getting a good night’s sleep to help calm anxiety.
When you wake up in the morning, it is important to do all of the personal things you need to make your brain and body feel comfortable and well balanced in the morning. For example, if you need to stretch or workout to clear your mind, do so. If you need to meditate, take the time to do so before you leave. The more relaxed you are when you leave your home, the higher your chances are successfully passing the test. It’s also highly- important that you eat breakfast before you get to your testing site. Although you get breaks as opportunities to eat a snack, the first break doesn’t come until a couple of hours after you begin.
Then leave your house early. Leaving early to go to your test center allows you enough time to get through traffic and enough time to give yourself a moment to relax in your car and motivate yourself without worrying about being late.
Things to Bring
Outside of your admissions ticket and ID, there are a couple of other items you should bring. Prometric test centers usually keep the rooms very cold, so it is a good idea to bring a jacket or a wear long-sleeve shirt. If you have properly prepared yourself for what the test entails, then you know that the test will take several hours to complete. Prepare yourself for chances of you getting thirsty or hungry by bringing some snacks. All testing sites have lockers provided, so you will store them while you are testing. If you don’t have any snacks to bring, make sure you bring cash for vending machines. All testing materials such as paper and pencils will be provided for you, so you don’t have to worry about bringing those.
It’s Testing Time
Once you have turned in your GRE admissions ticket, you can no longer leave without the testing site if you want to pass your test. At this point, you should take the opportunity to take some deep breaths, trust your gut, and begin to focus. Most people like to skip the tutorial section, but you should take the 5-minute tutorial as an opportunity to relax, settle in the room, and get acclimated to your computer.
Don’t Be Afraid
The rules for the testing site can be a little intimidating for some, but don’t be afraid to raise your hand and ask. If your computer isn’t working properly or needs extra scratch paper, don’t be afraid to raise your hand! Test prep monitors are there to help you with anything you need, except how to get the answers, of course.
A lot of times, test-takers freeze on the section they know they struggle the most with. For example, some may struggle with the writing section, or people who aren’t great at math may hesitate with formulas. Don’t be afraid. The best thing is that you already know this section is not your strong suit, so the best thing is to trust what you do know and work through it from there. The best thing to remember is that you will be done with the worst part sooner than you know it. The most important thing to do is remain focused.
Time is Precious
Time is a vital aspect of the GRE. Therefore, it is important to remember not to take so much time on one problem, especially if you have a hard time. If you find yourself after five minutes on one question, still not knowing the answer, your best move would be to move on and take a guess. On the contrary, if you are confident of an answer and know what it is in less than a minute, take another minute to double-check. You don’t want to lose points for rushing and overlooking something.
This includes taking time for your breaks as well. Utilizing your break time is important to not only give your eyes and body a rest but your brain a rest. Don’t stress yourself out by skipping breaks. It will only hurt your scores!