What should I do in the last week before my exam? (GRE)

It's exciting that your big day is coming up, but there's still plenty you can do!

Last Minute Tips

First, you should take a look at our blog posts on Last Minute GRE Tips and GRE Test Day.

Also, please check out our GRE Vocab eBook. You should look at the chapter "Most Common GRE Words" that starts on page 11. You will want to be as familiar as possible with this list. These words frequently show up, so it's important to have them down pat.

The same goes for our GRE Math Formula eBook. Check it out and make sure you understand the formulas inside and when to use them.

Additionally, please note that you should not study the day before or the day of your test. This may seem counterintuitive, but it's important to give your brain rest. Cramming right before the GRE will only tire you out and leave you ill-prepared for hours of testing.

Answer More Practice Problems

Ideally by now, you've answered most of the Magoosh practice problems! Please continue this study habit through your final week. Even if you've answered all the practice problems, you can still learn plenty by going back through our questions a second time. ​You should know that students who answer all the Magoosh questions 2 or 3 times increase their scores more than students who answer all our questions only once! To put it simply: the more times you do our questions, the better you will do on your exam.

This, too, may seem counterintuitive. How can answering the same questions actually help? Although you may remember the exact answer some of the time, you will end up needing to re-solve the vast majority of questions. And that's the true way of knowing whether you understand a particular concept. If you've missed a question twice, then it's a telltale sign that you need to review that particular topic! The key to learning is repetition—you want your test instincts to become almost automatic. So going through all of our questions multiple times over a long period of time helps to reinforce concepts and build your knowledge.

Also, please remember that healthy study focuses on quality, not quantity. You'll get much more out of your practice by taking time to analyze questions you miss, rather than simply plowing through as many questions as possible. In other words, don't concentrate on blindly rushing through hundreds of questions—focus on learning and correcting your mistakes. :-)

Take Practice Tests

If you haven't taken any practice tests yet, you need to start right away! As the big date draws closer, you'll want to make yourself comfortable with the testing experience. When you take your practice tests, try to emulate real test conditions as much as possible—only consume water and snacks you'll have available on test day, and avoid distractions and extended breaks.

ETS offers two free practice tests known as PowerPrep tests. ETS is the same company that produces the GRE, so the PowerPrep tests offer an experience very similar to taking a real GRE. If you've just entered your final week and you haven't taken these yet, you should complete one ASAP. The software for the tests is available here:

If you've already taken the PowerPrep tests and your itching for more practice exams, you can use Magoosh. You'll find a "Practice Test" link within Magoosh's navigation bar under "Practice."

Best of luck on your exam—and don't forget to give yourself a rest day immediately before! :-)

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