The GRE has six sections. During the test, the Analytical Writing section is the always presented first, whereas the remaining five – two Verbal sections, two Quantitative sections, and one experimental section – may be presented in any order. The GRE revised General Test allows the test taker to skip questions within a section and to go back to previous questions in order to edit and/or change answers. This allows the test taker to answer the questions within a section in any order – in just the same way as a paper test.
The test takes about 3 hours and 45 minutes to complete. Midway through the test, after the third section, a 10-minute break is provided.
This section requires you to write two different essays: an "Analyze an Issue" essay to be written in 30 minutes and an "Analyze an Argument" essay, also to be written in 30 minutes. The essays are written using a basic word processing program specifically designed by ETS so that only basic writing functions are available but not spell-checking or other advanced features. Each essay is graded on a scale of 0-6, in half-point increments.
For more information on this section,
Perhaps the most challenging for non-native speakers of English, each of the two verbal sections has three question types: Reading Comprehension, which tests your ability to read, understand, and extract relevant information from lengthy passages; Text Completion, which tests your ability to fill in missing information; and Sentence Equivalence, which tests your ability to choose two words such that either can be used in the blank of the given sentence while at the same time keeping the meaning of the same.
You have to complete approximately 20 questions in each verbal section within 30 minutes.
The two sections test knowledge in Arithmetic, Algebra, Geometry, and Data Analysis using three types of questions: Quantitative Comparisons, Problem Solving, and Data Interpretation. A calculator is provided on-screen.
You have to complete approximately 20 questions in each quantitative section within 30 minutes.
This section can be any one of a verbal, quantitative, or analytical writing type containing new questions that ETS is considering for future use. The experimental section – which is not scored –appears identical to the scored sections and thus cannot be identified. At times, instead of the experimental section, a research section – which is identified – is given at the end of the test.