Low GRE score – when should you retake GRE
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We are flooded with questions related to ‘should I retake the GRE’ on our forums at www.app2us.com. This post analyzes the scenarios when one should consider retaking the GRE general test. The scenarios are written for Science and Engineering admissions. Note that there are two important parameters on the decision to retake the GRE. One parameter is that is your score really low – as discussed in the seven scenarios below. Second parameter is that can you really improve. For example, if you scored 500 in verbal and 600 in the quantitative section, but you feel that you have given your best shot and really studied a lot before the test, then you may not see any improvement in your score if you retake.
Scenario 1: Quant is above 750 Verbal is above 600These are good scores and there is absolutely no need to retake GRE.
Scenario 2: Quant is 700 Verbal is above 550These are good scores but quant score is not competitive enough for top universities. If you retake, most universities will take the average. So if you are confident of scoring at least 780 in quant and sure that your verbal won’t go down, you may consider retaking.
Scenario 3: Quant is above 750 Verbal is above 400There is no need to retake GRE. Quant scores are much more important than verbal. However if you think you had a bad day and can score 600 in verbal if you retake, then go ahead.
Scenario 4: Quant is below 650.You have very little chances at good universities. You may retake if you can score 780 plus in the second attempt.
Scenario 5: Quant is below 600Students with quant scores below 600 do get admitted at low ranked universities. If you really want to study at a good university, retake the GRE and aim for at least 750 in quant and try to improve the verbal score too.
Scenario 6: Verbal is below 300.If your quant score is 780 or more, you may still have hope. If you do not have that high quant, then you should consider retaking the GRE. However please realize that if you scored 300 on the first attempt, may be your verbal skills are not that great. In second attempt you will need to score 500 so that your average exceeds 400. For a person who scored 300, it is difficult to score 500 second time.
Scenario 7: Your score is low and you failed to complete the test.Since you failed to complete all the questions on the GRE, you would have been heavily penalized, resulting in a low score. If you retake and finish the test, your score will substantially improve. So consider retaking after some practice to improve your speed without compromising on accuracy.
These are hypothetical scenarios, may not exactly fit in your case. Still not sure, ask a question at www.app2us.com.