GRE Eligibility Criteria 2023

6 minute read
Eligibility for GRE

Success comes to those who have patience and perseverance. There is no particular shortcut to reaching your goals, but there are various ways that can help you build a strong career. The Graduate Record Test (GRE) is a global-level exam conducted by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) which can help you pursue higher education in top universities around the world in several disciplines. This exam tests your critical thinking, and analytical writing along with verbal and quantitative reasoning skills. It aims to help you prepare for the courses you have chosen to study abroad. Before taking any exam, there are certain GRE eligibility criteria that need to be fulfilled in order to take admitted into your dream courses. This article will walk you through eligibility for GRE, its details and various other aspects that will help you understand the exam better. 

Why is GRE Important?

GRE aspirants often ask questions like, “What is the importance of the GRE?” or “ How can the GRE help in my career growth?”. The importance of GRE is not just limited to Business, Engineering and Management admissions. Taking the GRE can help you prepare for the upcoming challenges in your future, the purpose of GRE is to measure your preparedness for graduate schools and their potential for academic success. This is why it is important to understand the GRE eligibility criteria along with why it’s important. GRE can help you pursue your desired course in your dream country. More than 500 Business and Management institutions in the world consider GRE scores as a critical component of their admission procedures. This is because it comprises several skills that are needed in most Business schools. It is one of the most influential exams that can shape your career in a better way.  If you have an impressive GRE score you can explore International and high profile career options. 

GRE Eligibility Criteria

There are certain prerequisites that need to be fulfilled by applicants for the GRE exam. Tabulated below are the eligibility criteria for the GRE exam:

Specifics Details
GRE Eligibility As such, there are no set eligibility criteria for GRE
Nationality GRE is a global-level examination that is available for students
from all across the world. There are no restrictions regarding nationality
Age Limit There is no age specified by the official authorities
Number of Attempts Candidates can take the GRE test once every 21 days up to
5 times in a year. This is in case you missed the actual test date
This applies even if you canceled your scores on a test taken previously 
Academic Qualification The minimum educational qualification for GRE is an
undergraduate degree from a recognized university

GRE Eligibility for Differently Abled Candidates

Candidates with any form of physical disability must fill up a form provided in the bulletin. This form should be then submitted to the ETS. 

GRE Eligibility for Educational Qualification

Although there are no specific mentioned guidelines for previous qualifications, however, certain universities might ask for a certain GPA. For instance, Harvard requires a 3.8 GPA and Columbia requires 3.85.

GRE Eligibility for Work Experience

The ETS has not specified any guidelines for work experience to be eligible for the GRE as a number of candidates prepare for the GRE immediately after their undergrad with no work experience. 

Types of GRE

Before we delve deeper into understanding the GRE eligibility criteria, let’s first explore the types of this exam. GRE is mainly classified into two types of tests, namely the GRE General Test and the GRE Subject Test.

GRE General Test: GRE General Test scores are readily accepted by universities and is one of the commonly opted types of GRE. It aims to assess the candidate’s verbal reasoning, analytical writing and quantitative ability. It is conducted around the year and aspirants can select an exam date according to their choice.

GRE Subject Test: As the name suggests, the GRE subject test evaluates an individual’s understanding of a specific subject, namely Maths, Physics, English Literature, Biology, Biochemistry, Chemistry and Psychology. Opposed to GRE General, it is organised on a particular fixed date and is taken by those applying for admission into specialized courses

Also Read: How to Prepare for GRE Online?

GRE Exam Pattern 

The GRE test is a combined test which is not related to any particular field. It is specially designed to evaluate those skills, that you have already picked up over the years. The GRE exam syllabus lays emphasis on testing the English language proficiency of candidates along with other skills. it consists of 3 main sections: Quantitative, Verbal, and Analytical writing.

Section Paper-based Format Computer-based Format
Verbal Reasoning Number of Sections: 2
Number of Questions: 50 
Duration: 70 minutes
Number of Sections: 2
Number of Questions: 40 
Duration: 60 minutes
Analytical Writing Number of Sections: 2 [2 Tasks]Duration: 60 minutes Number of Sections: 1 [2 Tasks]Duration: 60 minutes
Quantitative Aptitude Number of Sections: 2
Number of Questions: 50
Duration: 80 minutes
Number of Sections: 2
Number of Questions: 40 
Duration: 70 minutes

Also Read: GRE Coaching – Best Way to Prepare for GRE

Analytical Writing

This section tests your ability to analyze texts, identify valid arguments, judge evidence and provide your views in the most convincing manner. The analytical writing section consists of two tasks- candidates have to carefully analyze the given situations and provide suitable explanations. 

Verbal Reasoning

This section checks your capacity to understand the content’s intentions, perspectives, prioritize the points made and connect the similarities in various texts. GRE tests your ability to understand different meanings. The verbal reasoning section consists of Reading Comprehension, Text Completion and Sentence Formation.

Also Read: 50 Difficult Words with Meanings

Quantitative Reasoning

This section on the GRE tests your ability to play with numbers and data. This tests your ability to understand various mathematical problems and use different models and formulas to solve them. The GRE quant syllabus comprises different mathematical topics including Arithmetic,  Algebra, Geometry, Algorithms and Data Analysis. The test consists of various equations and word problems which you have to solve under 30 minutes. 

Score Validity of GRE

Your GRE score is valid for up to 5 years, from the exact date that you appeared for the exam. For example, if you took the test on April 2017, it will be valid up to April 2022. This helps if you were prepared for pursuing higher studies and for some reason couldn’t get through, you can use your GRE score you secured 5 years ago and fulfil your dreams.

Also Read: GRE Preparation Tips and Strategies

University Guidelines Accepting GRE

Apart from the qualifying GRE Scores, applicants are supposed to submit certain additional documents as well. We have listed the documents below – 

  1. Undergrad scores
  2. Work experience
  3. Letter of Recommendation
  4. Letter of Purpose
  5. Project Quality
  6. Language Proficiency Scores – TOEFL and IELTS

The GRE score for admission to top universities should be around –  320 whereas the average score remains 150-152. The scholarship is also provided based on GRE scores


What is the eligibility for the GRE exam?

There is no such specified GRE eligibility criteria that one needs to adhere to. Moreover, Educational Testing Service (ETS) has provided no restrictions on age or educational qualifications for GRE aspirants. For the identity proof required to apply for GRE, Indian students need to provide their original passport which is the only document accepted as a valid ID proof by ETS.

Can I give GRE after 12th?

There is no such eligibility requirement for GRE but since it is for master’s degrees and PhD courses, it is better to give GRE at the completion of your graduation. The GRE score is valid for 5 years, so appearing for it after 12th, you must keep in mind that the best time to give GRE is after completing your bachelor’s degree as you can utilise your undergraduate years for preparation as well as obtaining your passport which is an essential requirement for Indian students to apply for GRE.

What is the age limit for GRE?

There is no specified age limit for GRE as per the Educational Testing Service (ETS). You can apply for GRE when you are prepared for it as well as have your passport ready as it is a crucial requirement for ID proof.

Is the GRE difficult?

GRE is usually considered as a difficult exam as compared to ACT and SAT as it consists of higher-level vocabulary, reading comprehension and quantitative ability questions from the candidates.

Is Passport required for GRE?

Yes, a passport is the only document that is required as Identity proof under the GRE eligibility criteria for Indian students.

What is GRE exam fee?

The exam fee to register for GRE is USD 220.

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