Best Strategy to answer GRE Math

Forum for the GRE subject test in mathematics.
marco
Posts: 263
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2012 2:27 am

Best Strategy to answer GRE Math

Postby marco » Thu Sep 20, 2012 3:58 pm

Hello:

I have been taking the practice exams recently and am currently wondering what is the best way to answer the GRE Math test. Some say that the best way is to first answer all the questions that are easy and less time consuming and then start to answer the rest?
I am not sure this is the best way to answer the test because it is very hard to identify which are the easy and less time consuming questions.
On another hand, in my view it is virtually impossible to be able to spend sufficient time on all of the questions. It has been my experience that because i spent little time on an easy question i frequently answer the question incorrectly because of an error in my calculations.
In the end what matters the most is that we pass the 80 percentile barrier (which can be attained with roughly a raw score of 48?) so wouldn't it be best to dedicate sufficient time to the questions one after another in order guarantee no dumb calculation-errors? With this method it could be that one answers less questions but increases his precision rate. With the other method, it seems to me, that one answers a lot more questions but decreases precision.

In general, given your experience, what is the best strategy?

Any general advice or personal anecdotes on the matter would be really helpful.

nico
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2012 8:54 pm

Re: Best Strategy to answer GRE Math

Postby nico » Thu Sep 20, 2012 9:01 pm

I've had the exact same experience as you. At one point I managed to answer all of them in time....with a 50% accuracy (almost exclusively due to STUPID mistakes like 3*3 =6 :oops: ). When I went slower and answered about 40 questions I got only two wrong....Clearly, there has to be some middle ground between accuracy and speed....I dunno, after taking a few more I think the best method, for me, is to just go through the exam and try to solve them sequentially, only skipping the ones that I have to think about for more than 30 seconds. In my experience so far deciding on a quick glance the difficulty of a question isn't working. A lot of the times the question SEEMS easy and then 1 minute in I realize its way more involved and tricky. Others that i thought were hard turned out SUPER easy after thinking about them for a few seconds (which sucked cause I skipped them and only answered them when i was reviewing the test...).

So yeah, I dunno what the best technique is, but i'd be curious to hear what people say....

marco
Posts: 263
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2012 2:27 am

Re: Best Strategy to answer GRE Math

Postby marco » Fri Sep 21, 2012 1:13 pm

Right now i am thinking that the best strategy would be to solve the problems sequentially favoring precision over speed. The main reason to do this is because the questions we answer incorrectly deducts points while the unanswered ones are kinda like "neutral".

What do you guys think?

malaka
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 3:45 am

Re: Best Strategy to answer GRE Math

Postby malaka » Thu Sep 27, 2012 2:33 am

marco wrote:Right now i am thinking that the best strategy would be to solve the problems sequentially favoring precision over speed. The main reason to do this is because the questions we answer incorrectly deducts points while the unanswered ones are kinda like "neutral".

What do you guys think?

I am appropriate with you."Neutral" way is best way

Legendre
Posts: 217
Joined: Wed Jun 03, 2009 1:05 am

Re: Best Strategy to answer GRE Math

Postby Legendre » Sat Sep 29, 2012 1:27 pm

I heard about this method: fly through the paper answering all the easy ones first. Then restart from beginning and tackle the harder ones.

IMHO this is inefficient because you already spend time reading and thinking each question on the first pass. It is better to give it your full effort for no more than 3 minutes.




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