GRE vs GMAT – Which is easier?
A very crucial question comes up in every applicant’s mind- “Should I give GRE or GMAT?”
This GMAT vs GRE problem is a very valid one and needs apt answers because it affects the very outlook of your application. The most significant distinction between the GMAT and the GRE is that the GMAT is required for admission to business schools, whereas the GRE is required for entrance to various graduate programmes. Therefore, when deciding between the GMAT and the GRE, most people will tell you this — If you only want to apply to business schools, take the GMAT, and if you’re not sure what type of graduate degree you want to pursue, take the GRE.
However, this is only partially correct. It takes a little more work to decide between the GMAT and the GRE. The trick is to decide by looking at the various sections of both tests. In this post, we’ve emphasised these distinctions and compared the quant and verbal sections of each test to determine if the GMAT is simpler than the GRE or the GRE is easier than the GMAT. Hence, we will be testing GMAT vs GRE difficulty.
There need not be a good-for-all answer to this question. Therefore, read the factors below to find out what you might find easy and relevant to your profile. By the time you are done reading this blog post, you should be close to deciding which test is best for your application.
GMAT vs GRE – The difference between the two examinations
- GRE can get you admission into Graduate Schools and Business Schools for your Masters. The GRE consists of Verbal and Quantitative sections, whose scores vary from 130 to 170 in 1-point increments. It also consists of a 60-minute Analytical Writing section with two essays of 30 minutes each. This exam lasts for 3.5. The cost of the GRE test is $205.
The GRE is commonly taken on a computer and is adaptable at the section level. This means that your performance on the first portion of both Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning will have an impact on the difficulty of the questions on the second section. Your score on the entire section will decide the difficulty of the next section on that subject. Within a section of the GRE, you can return to questions you’ve already answered.
- GMAT can only get you admission for a Master from Business Schools. GMAT consists of 2 major sections- Verbal and Quantitative. It also has a 30-minute Analytic section with one essay, a 30-minute Integrated Reasoning section, but their scores are separate and do not add up for the total GMAT score. Therefore, the GMAT score ranges can range from 200 up to 800 in 10-point increments. The duration of the exam is 3.5 hours, and it costs $250.
The GMAT is a computer-based adaptive test that is taken on a computer. This means that the first question in each part will be of medium difficulty when you start the Quantitative and Verbal sections. If you responded right, the following question would be slightly more difficult; if you answered incorrectly, the following question would be a little easier. You can’t go back to a question on the GMAT once you’ve answered it.
Both the test scores are valid for five years.
Now, let us analyse the differences in the contents of the two examinations-
The types of questions in the two examinations can be compared according to two sections- Verbal and Quantitative.
A) GMAT vs GRE – Verbal Section
The GRE verbal section includes-
- Sentence equivalence
It tests your ability to understand the meanings of words, sentences and entire texts; understand relationships among words and concepts. The questions asked consist of a single sentence with one blank and six answer choices. You have to select two answer choices.
- Reading Comprehension
It tests your ability to analyse a situation and come to a conclusion, reason from incomplete data, understand multiple levels of meaning, such as literal, figurative and author’s intent. The questions asked are multiple-choice questions with five answer choices, of which you must select one.
- Text Completion
It tests your ability to interpret and evaluate information. It checks whether you can picture as a whole and revise that picture. The questions asked are in the form of a passage, out of which about 1-5 sentences are long with a couple of blanks. You have to choose the right answer from among the five answer choices.
- Sentence Correction
It tests your grammar and effective communication skills. The questions asked will be in the form of a sentence. A part of the sentence will be underlined. You’ll have to choose the right phrase from among the five choices to replace the underlined part.
- Reading Comprehension
It tests your skills to analyse a situation and come to a conclusion. A set of questions will be asked on a passage. You have to read the content of the passage carefully and choose the best answer to each question.
- Critical Reasoning
It tests your reasoning skills. You have to analyse the information on which the question is based and then select the right answer.
A major difference between GRE and GMAT here is that while GRE tests your vocabulary, GMAT is more about grammar.
B) GMAT vs GRE – Quantitative Section
The course content (algebra, data interpretation, geometry, arithmetic, word problems) is the same for both exams in the Quantitative section. But, the question format is different for each of the exams.
The Quantitative section questions for GRE are divided into four categories –
- Quantitative comparison questions
- Multiple-choice Questions – Select One Answer Choice
- Multiple-choice Questions – Select One or More Answers Choice
- Numeric Entry questions
For GMAT –
- Data sufficiency
However, the GMAT math is much more challenging than the GRE one. Also, while GRE asks you to choose from multiple answers, type in the correct values or make quantitative comparisons, GMAT focuses on testing your problem-solving skills and throws some sufficiency questions.
A major difference between GRE and GMAT is that GRE allows you to use the calculator for the answers while GMAT does not, even though Math is more difficult in the GMAT. Therefore, proficiency in mathematics can help you decide on GMAT vs GRE tiff.
GMAT vs GRE Syllabus
The GRE and GMAT syllabuses have certain similarities, but they also have some distinctions. Don’t fall into the thought of believing that studying for one will prepare you for the other. Both the GMAT and the GRE feature sections that are similar. The GMAT has the Verbal, Quantitative, Integrated Reasoning, and Analytical Writing Assessment portions, whereas the GRE has the verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and analytical writing sections. The part on Integrated Reasoning is a new addition. Many people believe that the GMAT’s Quantitative component is more difficult than the GRE’s Verbal section and that the GRE’s Verbal section is more difficult than the GMAT.
GMAT vs GRE – Which one is the best for you?
Let us summarise what you have read till now and connect it with your profile.
- If you are focused on Business Schools, the GMAT will help you the most. Over 6,000 business graduate programs at approximately 1,700 universities and organisations around the world accept the GMAT exam. It is designed specifically to test your management aptitude. Though there are Business schools that accept GRE, some may not necessarily weigh it as equal to GMAT.
- GRE is a good option if you are still thinking about choosing a program for yourself but want to give the exam now as the scores are valid for five years. That way, you can later opt for either Business Schools or non-management courses. However, the GMAT is seen as a sign of commitment to management programs for the same reason.
- GRE is a good option if an amazing vocabulary is your strength. But then again, if you are fluent in English but lesser fluent applicants can get past you by learning over 1000 words, you have one more reason to go for GMAT over GRE.
No matter what you choose, ultimately, your aim should be to get a score that the Admission officers can’t ignore.
Here is a YouTube video on GMAT v/s. GRE | Which one Should I choose? | Acceptance, Eligibility, and Difficulty.
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How to decide which exam to give?
Here are four steps to determining whether you should take the GMAT or the GRE:
- Find out your target school’s score requirement is – Check with your desired business schools to see if they accept both the GMAT and the GRE or if they prefer the GMAT.
- GMAT and GRE diagnostic tests are available – Examine your strengths and weaknesses with a free GMAT diagnostic test and an official GRE diagnostic test. You’ve found your solution if you perform better on one test than another. If you decide to take the GMAT, look at the 5-year trend in top business school GMAT scores to determine your target GMAT score.
- Decide on the type of graduate programme you wish to pursue – GRE scores are accepted by a wide range of graduate schools, from literature to quantum physics. GMAT scores are accepted only by business schools. Take the GMAT if you’re serious about going to business school. Take the GRE if you’re still undecided and want to keep your choices open.
- Compare the GMAT and GRE scores value after graduation – Many consulting firms focus heavily on candidates who have a strong GMAT score. As a result, a GMAT score can help you land both an internship and a job.
To conclude this blog, refer to the table below:
|Should you take GMAT or GRE?||If you plan on getting into business schools’ graduate programs||If you’re still undecided about the graduate programme you want to pursue,|
|Which schools are willing to accept these tests?||2300 business schools||Fewer business schools|
|Test Validity||5 years||5 years|
|How is the test examined?||Computer-based test||Computer-based and paper-based|
|Test Format||Computer adaptive test||Computer adaptive test|
|Number of sections||4||6 (1 unscored research section included)|
|Test duration||3 hours 7 minutes||3 hours 45 minutes|
|AWA section||One essay – 30 minutes||Two essays – 60 minutes|
|Integrated Reasoning section||12 questions – 30 minutes||NA|
|Quant Section||1 section – 31 questions – 62 minutes||20 questions each in 2 sections – 70 minutes|
|Verbal Section||1 section – 36 questions – 65 minutes||20 questions each in 2 sections – 60 minutes|
|Test Score Range||200 – 800 (in 10-point increment)||260 – 340 (in 1-point increment)|
|Quant score range||6 – 51 (scaled score)||130 – 170|
|Verbal score range||6 – 51||130 – 170|
|Integrated Reasoning score||1 – 8||NA|
|AWA score||0 – 6||0 – 6|
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