The Verbal section of GRE is colloquially referred to as the English part of the exam in the subcontinent. It is important to throw light upon this section while simultaneously debunking a myth associated with this section.
There is a pervasive belief that GRE verbal section is all about vocabulary and prowess in grandiloquent vocabulary is the only way to crack this section. However, this belief is unwarranted to an extent. While it is true that a good vocabulary is an asset that is not the only weapon you need to wield. In a verbal section, there are text completion questions, sentence equivalence questions and reading comprehension questions. Of these, text completions and sentence equivalence are the two types of questions which extensively test word power.
It is a look-alike of our well known ‘fill in the blanks’. It comes in three forms namely single blank, double blank, and triple blank. Single blank text completions have five options and the test taker chooses one correct option. In multiple blank text completions, each blank has three options. The test taker chooses one correct option for each blank.
These questions have a single blank and the test taker need to choose two correct answers out of six options. The two words selected need not be synonyms but should produce sentences that are alike in meaning.
The rest of the verbal section tests reading comprehension skills. Understanding the central issue of the passage can help crack the reading comprehension component. Some reading comprehension questions test logical reasoning skills also. There are approximately 3-4 passages with a total of 10-11 questions in this component of the GRE. Some passages may have 2-3 questions following them, whereas others may have just 1 question.
The time allotted to answer all the 20 questions in a verbal section is 30 minutes. The GRE exam will have two verbal sections that are scored. The experimental section may be a verbal or a quant section.