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GRE Exam Syllabus 2024 (Section wise) - General & Subject Test Syllabus

GRE Exam Syllabus 2024 (Section wise) - General & Subject Test Syllabus

Edited By Porishmita Paul | Updated on Apr 15, 2024 05:47 PM IST | #GRE

The GRE test syllabus is released by the ETS on its official website. The GRE exam syllabus is composed of three major sections, namely GRE Analytical Writing, GRE Verbal Reasoning, and GRE Quantitative Reasoning. The ETS has provided the Graduate Record Examination syllabus for two tests, the GRE General Test and the GRE Subject Test.

The GRE test syllabus is entirely different for both General GRE and Subject GRE tests. GRE General test syllabus measures a candidate’s verbal reasoning ability, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking, and analytical writing skills. The GRE Subject Test evaluates the candidate’s expertise in specific fields like Chemistry, Psychology, and Mathematics, among others.

Candidates appearing for the GRE exam must analyse the GRE test syllabus carefully to prepare for the exam. Also, check out various preparation tips, and strategies to plan your study programme. Read the complete article to learn more about the GRE syllabus, subject-wise portion, and many more.

Changes in the GRE Exam Syllabus

There are some major changes introduced in the new GRE format. ETS has reduced the GRE test duration to two hours from September 22, 2023, which is approximately half the time of the current test duration. Some of the other changes to the GRE General test syllabus are:

  • The “Analyse an Argument” task is removed in the Analytical Writing section.

  • The Quantitative and Verbal Reasoning sections will have a reduced question count of 54 in total.

  • There will be only one Analytical writing essay in the new GRE test syllabus.

  • The unscored section is removed.

  • GRE subject tests are offered in two modes - computer-based and at home just like the GRE General Tests.

  • The duration of the GRE exam for Physics and Psychology is reduced to 2 hours.

  • Chemistry will no longer offered as a subject test.

  • The last test was held in April 2023 and the scores for those tests will be available for the next 5 years.

  • The official GRE scores will now be available in 8 to 10 days which previously took 10 -15 calendar days.

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GRE Syllabus 2024

There are two types of Graduate Record Examination syllabus, which are generally required to study abroad.

  1. GRE General Test Syllabus (Popularly known as GRE exam syllabus for MS abroad).

  2. GRE Subject Test Syllabus

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GRE Test Syllabus 2024

GRE Exam Pattern

No. of GRE Questions

Allotted Time

GRE Analytical Writing Section

One "Analyse an Issue" task and one "Analyse an Argument" task

30 mins

GRE Verbal Reasoning Section

Section 1: 12 questions

Section 2: 15 questions

Section 1: 18 minutes

Section 2: 23 minutes

GRE Quantitative Reasoning

Section 1: 12 questions

Section 2: 15 questions

Section 1: 21 minutes

Section 2: 26 minutes

Total1 Hour 58 minutes

GRE General Test Syllabus

GRE syllabus in general refers to GRE general test syllabus. For students who want to apply for universities in the USA the GRE syllabus for MS, and the GRE exam syllabus for MBA are the same. According to the syllabus for the GRE exam, the GRE General test format covers three sections. They are -

  • Verbal Reasoning

  • Quantitative Reasoning

  • Analytical Writing

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The GRE test syllabus for the general test is different from the GRE subject test. Prospects have to consider the GRE general test syllabus for all MS courses abroad instead of the subject test syllabus. Moreover, the GRE general test and subject test can be taken on a computer or a paper-based method and at home.

GRE Test Syllabus 2024 for Verbal Reasoning

GRE English assesses the candidate’s ability to analyse, evaluate, and synthesise the written material. In the GRE exam syllabus for the Verbal section, there will be three sections of GRE topics namely; reading comprehension, text completion, and sentence equivalence.

  • Reading comprehension- Questions are designed to check how well the candidate understands and interprets the given paragraph. They need to understand the text structure, identify the author's assumption and perspective, find the meaning of words and sentences, explain the text, analyse the text, and derive conclusions from the text.

  • Text Completion- This section of GRE portion tests the candidate’s ability to interpret and evaluate the information given in small passages of five sentences. Students have to fill in one to three blanks based on the information provided in the passage.

  • Sentence Equivalence- In this section candidates have to complete the passage with the help of partial information given. There will be one blank and six answer choices. Candidates have to mark correct answer choices and there will be no marks for partially correct answers.

Candidates can view the detailed analysis of the Verbal Reasoning section along with sample questions in GRE sample papers.

GRE Test Syllabus: Quantitative Reasoning

The quantitative section comprises basic mathematical skills, an understanding of elementary mathematical concepts, and the ability to reason quantitatively and solve problems with quantitative methods. In the exam, there will be two 27 questions from 2 subsections The time duration for each subsection is 35 minutes.

The GRE test syllabus 2024 for Quantitative reasoning will have four types of questions :

  • Quantitative comparison questions: In these types of questions, candidates need to draw a comparison between two quantities and find out which statement best describes the comparison.

  • Multiple choice questions (select one answer choice): Candidates need to select one correct answer from the five given choices.

  • Multiple choice questions (select one or more answer choices): candidates need to select more than one correct answer from the given choices. No marks will be given for partially correct answers.

  • Numeric entry: candidates have to calculate and write the answers. These questions will not have any options given.

GRE Syllabus: Quantitative (Section-Wise)

GRE Math syllabus contains topics from school-level mathematics. However, questions will be application-based. Quant in GRE comes across as easy for students with good mathematics hold.

  • Arithmetic - The topics in the GRE exam syllabus include properties and types of integers, such as divisibility, factorization, prime numbers, remainders, and odd and even integers; arithmetic operations, exponents, and roots; and concepts such as estimation, percent, and ratio, rate, absolute value, the number line, decimal representation and sequences of numbers.

  • Algebra - Topics of the GRE test syllabus include operations with exponents; factoring and simplifying algebraic expressions; relations, functions, equations, and inequalities; solving linear and quadratic equations and inequalities; solving simultaneous equations and inequalities; setting up equations to solve word problems; and coordinate geometry, including graphs of functions, equations, and inequalities, intercepts and slopes of lines.

  • Geometry - In this topic, the ability to construct proofs is not tested in the GRE syllabus of this section.

Topics included:

  • Lines and angles

  • Circles

  • Triangle

  • Quadrilaterals

  • Polygon

  • Three-dimensional figures

  • Area, Perimeter, Volume

  • Angle Measurements

  • Data analysis - The topics that are included in the data analysis section are typically taught in high school algebra courses or introductory statistics courses. Inferential statistics are not tested.

Topics included:

  • Descriptive statistics such as Median, Mean, Range, Mode, Percentiles, etc.

  • Interpretation of data based on graphs, circle graphs, scatter plots, etc

  • Probability

  • Permutation and Combination

  • Venn Diagrams

  • Sets Theory

GRE Test Syllabus: Analytical Writing

This section assesses the critical thinking and analytical writing skills of the candidates. The section will have one analytical writing task of 30 minutes and is marked on a scale of 0-6 with 0.5 increments.

The task details in the GRE Syllabus for Analytical Writing are the following:

  • GRE Analyse an Issue Task: In this section, candidates need to think critically about the given topic/statement and express it in their own words. They must write at least 500-600 words on general interest topics. The test is subjective and depends upon the candidate's ability to express his thoughts with compelling reasons.

To score in this section, candidates need to practice their reading, writing, and vocabulary. They can read feature articles, journals, essays, and editorials on general interest topics. Candidates can check the analytical writing sample paper for understanding.

GRE Exam Subjects

What subject is on the GRE? GRE syllabus consists of mainly six subjects, namely, Biology, Maths, Chemistry, Psychology, Physics, and English Literature. GRE subject test judges a candidate’s knowledge in a specific field of academic study. GRE test subjects are available only in the paper-and-pencil version. Subject Tests of the GRE are meant to test candidates' knowledge and skill level in a particular subject area through the GRE examination syllabus.

GRE Test Syllabus 2024

GRE test subjects

No. of questions



66 multiple-choice questions

  • Algebra (25%)
  • Calculus (50%)
  • Additional Topics (25%)


70 five-choice questions

  • Classical Mechanics (20%)
  • Electromagnetism (18%)
  • Optics and Wave Phenomena (9%)
  • Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics (10%)
  • Quantum Mechanics (13%)
  • Atomic Physics (10%)
  • Special Relativity (6%)
  • Laboratory Methods (6%)
  • Specialised Topics(9%)


144 multiple-choice questions

  • Biological (30 questions)
  • Cognitive (29 questions)
  • Social (19 questions)
  • Developmental (18 questions)
  • Clinical (23 questions)
  • Measurement/Methodology/Other (25 questions)

GRE Subject Test Syllabus PDF Download

GRE Subject testDownload link
MathematicsClick here
PhysicsClick here


Click here

Points to Remember for GRE Exam Subject Test

  • Students planning to appear for the GRE Subject test are advised to do so during November.

  • The student should register six weeks before the exam date.

  • It takes another six weeks before the Subject test results are available to the test takers.

  • The advantage of appearing for the GRE Subject test in November is that the scores will be available to the student before the deadline for admission to most foreign institutes.

Also read:

GRE Exam Pattern

Candidates preparing for the GRE exam must check the examination pattern before starting their preparation. GRE examination pattern consists of three main sections, namely, Analytical Writing, Verbal Reasoning, and Quantitative Reasoning. The total number of questions asked in the GRE general test is 55, out of which, 54 are MCQs and 1 descriptive (essay form). GRE total marks are in the range of 260-340.

GRE Exam Pattern for General Test


Total Questions

Types of Questions


GRE Verbal Reasoning


Reading Comprehension

Text Completion

Sentence Equivalence

41 minutes

GRE Quantitative Reasoning


Quantitative Comparison Questions

Numeric Entry Questions

47 minutes

GRE Analytical Reasoning Questions


Analyse an Issue

30 minutes

GRE Preparation Tips

Candidates can start the preparation for the GRE exam after analysing the GRE syllabus. The candidate can start working on the GRE syllabus efficiently in less time. A few of the GRE preparation tips are mentioned below.

  • Get familiar with the GRE syllabus and format and start preparing for the GRE.

  • Fix a targeted score for the GRE exam and prepare accordingly.

  • Try to start well before covering the entire GRE exam syllabus by assigning priority to individual sections.

  • Check the GRE cutoff score of the universities shortlisted and then choose the target score.

  • Practice the GRE mock tests to understand the exam format and learn about time management during the examination.

  • Attempt every question in the test as there is no negative marking.

  • Use the test features like mark and review, instead of wasting more time on a single question.

With the help of the following tips and strategies, candidates can easily prepare for the GRE test and achieve the desired score.

Verbal Reasoning

  • Enhance the vocabulary by reading newspapers and practising new words.
  • Practice the reading section of the GRE syllabus; it will improve comprehension skills through various texts, articles, newspapers, and literature.
  • Understanding the sentence structure and tone of the paragraph will help in analysing the meaning and formation of sentences easily for the applicants.

Quantitative Reasoning

  • Practice and understand basic math concepts, including arithmetic, algebra, geometry, and data analysis. Evaluate formulas, properties, and problem-solving techniques for each topic.
  • Enhancing problem-solving skills by practicing numerous queries will eventually help the candidates stay focused and increase speed and accuracy.

Analytical Writing

To enhance this section of the GRE syllabus, candidates should understand the essay writing tasks and analyse the issue and aim of the topic. After practicing this section of the GRE exam syllabus, candidates can upgrade their thought skills and learn to manage their time.

Best Books for GRE

GRE preparation requires some special study materials and proper resources. Embarking GRE preparation within the vast landscape of GRE resources and finding out the best and most effective study strategies and materials is a great deal for students. Here we have included some best books for GRE to help the applicants accelerate their preparation including

  1. The Official GRE Guide: This ETS-published book contains the most up-to-date information about the test format, question types, and scoring system.

  2. Prep books: Popular options include Manhattan Prep, Kaplan, and Magoosh.

  3. Online Courses: Popular online courses like Veritas Prep and Princeton Review provide structured learning paths with video lectures, live sessions, and personalised feedback.

  4. Practice Websites and Apps: Free and paid resources like Khan Academy, GRE Prep Genius, and Magoosh Flashcards offer bite-sized practice and skill-specific drills.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

1. What is the syllabus for GRE?

The GRE syllabus covers three main areas: Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and Analytical Writing. GRE General test syllabus measures a candidate’s verbal reasoning ability, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking, and analytical writing skills. The GRE Subject Test evaluates the candidate’s expertise in specific fields like Chemistry, Psychology, and Mathematics, among others. 

2. What subject is on the GRE?

GRE syllabus consists of mainly six subjects, namely, Biology, Maths, Chemistry, Psychology, Physics, and English Literature. GRE subject test judges a candidate’s knowledge in a specific field of academic study.

3. Is the GRE a hard test?

The difficulty level of GRE depends on the candidate’s personal strengths and weaknesses. GRE is generally considered to be more challenging than SAT or ACT due to its advanced vocabulary. However, with thorough preparation and targeted practice candidates can get a promising score in GRE.

4. What is the GRE exam pattern?

The GRE exam pattern consists of three main sections: Analytical Writing, Verbal Reasoning, and Quantitative Reasoning. The exam duration is approximately 3 hours 45 minutes with a 10-minute break after the third section. GRE total marks are in the range of 260-340.

5. Is GRE harder than IELTS?

GRE is generally considered to be more challenging than IELTS. Both GRE and IELTS assess the English proficiency of the students. However, the GRE focuses on advanced vocabulary, analytical reasoning, and quantitative skills, making it generally more difficult than IELTS. 


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Questions related to GRE

Have a question related to GRE ?

TOEFL, IELTS, GRE, and GMAT are all standardized tests used for college admission, detailed information regarding these exams is mentioned below:

TOEFL: The Test of English as a Foreign Language is a standardized test that is used to know the English language proficiency of non-English speakers. TOEFL exam is taken by students wishing to enroll in English-speaking universities abroad. TOEFL scores are accepted by more than 11,000 universities in more than 190 countries.

IELTS: The International English Language Testing System is an English proficiency test, it checks your ability to understand and communicate in English. Many universities around the world require international students to have a valid IELTS score for admission to universities to study abroad.

GRE (Graduate Record Examination): This is a general exam required for many Master's programmes especially in humanities, social sciences, and sciences. GRE scores are also applicable for admission to some PhD programmes. GRE test checks your verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, analytical writing, and critical thinking skills.

GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test): This is specifically required for admission to MBA courses. GMAT test assess analytical writing, quantitative reasoning, integrated reasoning, and verbal reasoning skills, but with a focus on business applications.

Key differences: TOEFL, IELTS, GRE & GMAT





Assess English proficiency

Assess readiness for graduate studies

Required for

Many universities for international students

Master's & PhD programmes (GRE), MBA programs (GMAT)

Specific skills tested

Reading, listening, speaking, writing

Verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, analytical writing, critical thinking (GRE), similarly GMAT accesses a candidate's abilities but with a business focus.

Hello aspirant,

Those who wish to pursue postsecondary education, specifically a Master's degree, specialised Master's programme, MBA, or PhD, are eligible to take the GRE. You must show up for the GRE general exam. Use the following link to get the comprehensive exam details:

Thank you

Hope this information helps you.

Choosing the best GRE coaching center in Hyderabad depends on various factors such as the quality of faculty, study materials, class size, and the success rate of the institute. Look for centers that offer comprehensive courses, personalized attention, flexible timings, and extensive practice tests. Additionally, consider the center's reputation, feedback from former students, and any additional resources like online support or library access. Visiting a few centers to get a feel for their teaching style and environment can also help in making an informed decision. Consider seeking guidance from educational career consultancies such as Invicta Career Consultancy (ICC). These consultancies evaluate your academic profile and career aspirations, helping identify suitable scholarships based on your qualifications and chosen field of study. They also provide support for exams like IELTS, GMAT, SAT, GTE, and more. ICC stands out by offering comprehensive assistance, including entrance exam training, help with SOP writing, and guidance in selecting suitable colleges. When exploring consultancy options, evaluate similar firms to find the one aligning best with your educational goals.

Dear Student,

For admittance to premier universities like MIT, Harvard, Stanford, UC Berkeley, and CMU, your resume must be exceptionally strong.

  • GRE - on the safe side, 325+
  • GPA of at least 110 and a TOEFL score of at least 110.
  • Do as many articles as you can, attempt to participate in research activities at your college, and if at all feasible, try to obtain patents.
  • Internships: I firmly feel that internships are important. Utilize your vacation time for internships, and attempt to concentrate on professions that are research-based or pure CS.
  • Extracurricular Activities: Present Papers, Participate in GSOC and Other Coding Events, etc.
  • Do two or more projects during your undergraduate studies, preferably ones that are linked to your field of study.
  • Work Experience - This is an optional consideration, but if you spend a few years in a top product company's R&D, it might be worthwhile.
  • Put a lot of time and work crafting your SOP and make sure it accurately expresses your reasons for obtaining an MS in Computer Science.
  • Get letters of recommendation from top management at your job and from research faculty at your college—they must know you!

Even if you address all of the aforementioned criteria, there is no assurance that you will be admitted to one of the universities you have named. When you make a decision, a combination of all these criteria will be taken into account, but these 10 ideas are a fantastic place to start.

I know someone who received acceptance letters from MIT, UC Berkeley, and Carnegie Mellon University for their MS and PhD programmes after scoring between 1400 and 1600 on the GRE. He applied with an excellent resume that included a 9+ GPA throughout college, two years of research in Microsoft R&D, and a few patents. Therefore, what matters is your whole profile.

I hope that helps! I wish you the best!

Hi aspirant
IELTS (International English language Testing System) is an English language test taken by millions of aspirants in non English speaking countries who wish to study, migrate or work in English speaking nations. This test is conducted at an international level. It tests your proficiency based on 4 skills i.e listening, reading, writing and speaking.
So yes, you'll need to appear for IELTS exam in order to pursue MS from the US.

Now, there's another English aptitude test for the United States. It is called TOEFL or Test of English as a Foreign Language. It is accepted by American Universities while IELTS is accepted overseas. You can choose from these two as per your needs.
Hope this answers your query.
All the best :)
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