Sunday, June 18, 2006

GRE Scores. (Also, MFA Blog is Best Thing Ever)

DisaGREable writes...

I just discovered your MFA blog and it's my new favorite thing ever.

My question is this: Is it a huge mistake to only look at programs that don't require GRE scores for admission? I'm sorry, but when I took the SAT my senior year of high school, I swore to myself it would be my last standardized test. And I am nothing if not a woman of principle. Also, I am convinced that if I took the exam, I'd do terribly, and it wouldn't help my applicaton whatsoever.

Sub-question: How important are GRE scores to those programs that do require them? If I do abandon my principles and take the exam, how carefully do I need to prepare? I really don't want to go back to the Princeton Review.

Your favorite thing ever? I mean: Ever?

Well, if so, that's cool. Your codename is one of my all time favorites. DisaGREable. That's good, and it wins our codename of the week.

Check it out:

1. Quit worrying about the GRE. Get it done. Study those math formulas. Look at some root words. Take the practice test beforehand. Study for four or five hours. Then get a good night's rest and eat a good breakfast. Take the d@mn test. Otherwise, you're really trimming your options (by as much at 70% I'd guess) of the number of MFA programs you can apply to. Because...

2. The GRE won't factor much into the selection process. You've got to score somewhere within the average of graduate students for that particular school. Even if that's in the low average.

Good luck, D.


DisaGREeable said...

"Your codename is one of my all time favorites. DisaGREable. That's good, and it wins our codename of the week."

Mission accomplished! So will you write my recommendation for U of Oregon?

Thanks for your help.

RLN said...

I applied to three schools that didn't require GRE scores. I got into the one I wanted to attend, it's gotten some good notices on your site, and I don't regret not applying to others.

Anonymous said...

I understand grad schools have minimum GRE scores that you have to get in order to be admitted. But I've only seen this for the verbal scores (85th percentile). Is there a minimum requirement for the math section? Because I really bombed the math section.

Dana Shalash said...

Guys, could you please provide me with Grad schools, good ones of course, in the USA but that do NOT require the GRE?? Please... I am an international student looking forward to pursuing my MA program in the States, but can not get over the GRE nightmare!! I do not want to take it, and I'm not planning to..

R.P. said...

You can check out this tiny compilation I did on GRE scores at

Otherwise, you should really try to take the GRE. I was done early and came out with decent scores. I only studied approx. 6-9 times in 30 min to 1 hr chunks. It's not hard as long as you've looked at the book a few times. Try Princeton or Kaplan.

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