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A Complete Guide on How to Crack GRE Reading Comprehension


As people who want to go to graduate school may start their gre preparation (Graduate Record Examination), & the Reading Comprehension section is a huge challenge. This part is very important because it tests a person's ability to not only understand difficult passages but also to use critical thinking skills and give correct answers. This guide is meant to give you a complete plan for how to do well on the GRE Reading Comprehension section and reach your full score potential.

Understanding what you read in the GRE Reading Comprehension:

The Reading Comprehension section of the GRE is a tough test of how well candidates understand complex ideas, analyse different arguments, and understand difficult texts. This section usually has excerpts from many different fields, from the natural sciences to the humanities. After these passages, there will be a series of questions that test not only your understanding but also your ability to infer, evaluate, and draw conclusions.

Strategies for Understanding Passages on the GRE Reading Test:

To do well on the GRE Reading Comprehension section, you need a plan that includes a number of effective strategies. Here are four tried-and-true ways to deal with reading passages:

First, you can skim:

A quick scan is the first step in reading a passage. For this first look, you should pay attention to headings, subheadings, and any text that is in bold. By quickly looking at these parts, you can get a sense of the passage's main idea and how it is put together.

Second, read the passage:

After you've skimmed the passage the first time, read it with purpose. Immerse yourself in the text and try to figure out the main ideas, the details that support them, and the main point. Taking notes during this stage can help you remember important information.

Thirdly, Summarise the piece and pick out key points:

After you finish reading the passage, put its main points into one or two short sentences. This way of summarising helps you make sure you really understand the material. Also, take the time to find key fragments that relate to the main ideas, examples, and different points of view that are hidden in the text.

And lastly: Reading with a close eye:

Read the passage with a critical eye. Look at the author's point of view, tone, and argument. Examine the argument's strengths and weaknesses and look for any assumptions that aren't explicitly stated. This method helps you get ready for the nuanced thinking you'll need to answer in-depth questions.

Find all about GRE Exam Dates for Indian Students

How to Answer the Questions in GRE RC

After you've read the passage and thought about what it says, it's time to answer the questions. Here's how to answer each type of question:

Reading Comprehension Question Types

Reading Comprehension questions on the GRE come in many different styles. Let's look at some of the most common kinds of questions you'll be asked:

1. Main Point Type of Question

Find the most important idea in the passage. Find the recurring themes, main arguments, and big ideas that the text is built on.

2. The type of inference question

Use the information in the passage to figure out what to think. This group of questions tests how well you can draw logical conclusions.

3. What does it mean in this situation?

Figure out what certain words or phrases mean by looking at how they are used in the passage. This test measures how well you understand words in the context of their use.

"Highlight the Sentence" Type of Question

Choose a sentence from the passage that does something specific, like giving evidence or summing up a point of view.

Complete GRE Syllabus: Find here

Questions about facts and details in GRE RC

Show how well you remember and understand the passage by naming specific details that are mentioned. Most of the time, these questions require you to name specific pieces of information.

The 6 Most Common Types of GRE Paragraph Arguments (Critical Reasoning) Questions

In the GRE Reading Comprehension section, there is a subset of questions that require a different approach. These are the "critical reasoning" questions that have to do with paragraph arguments. For these questions, you need to know the author's argument well and be able to evaluate its parts in a critical way. Let's look at the six most common types of questions in this category, along with examples that show what they are like.

1. Make weaker or stronger

Types of Questions: These types of questions ask you to find answers that either weaken or strengthen the author's argument in the paragraph.

Example of a Paragraph Excerpt: "The rise in bike commuting has helped cut down on traffic jams and pollution in the air. But a study done in City X found that where there were more bike lanes, there were more bicycle accidents.

Which of the following, if true, would weaken the author's case for why biking to work is a good idea?

2. Think about the argument

Type of Question: These questions ask you to decide if the argument in the paragraph is valid. You must choose the answer that best questions the logic of the argument.

Example: "The new policy of flexible work hours has increased employee productivity by a lot. When these rules were put into place, companies' output went up by 20%."

Which of the following questions would be the most important to ask to judge the validity of the argument?

Check out these free sample papers for your GRE 

3. A contrast

Type of Question: Paradox questions are about things in the paragraph that seem to contradict each other. You have to choose the answer choice that helps make sense of the paradox or explains it.

For example: Even though they had good sales and loyal customers, Company X had too much debt and had to file for bankruptcy last quarter.

Which of the following best helps to explain what seems to be a contradiction in the paragraph?

4. Making a guess

Question type: Assumption questions are about finding assumptions that the author doesn't say but are important to their argument. You have to figure out the assumption that must be true for the argument to work.

For example: "The marketing campaign was a success because the number of people visiting the website went up. This proves that the campaign hit home with the people it was meant for."

Which of the following is a necessary assumption for the author's argument to be correct?

5. In-your-face

Type of question: Bold-faced questions ask about the bolded sentences in the paragraph. You need to figure out what part these sentences play in the author's argument, such as whether they are a premise, a conclusion, or a counterargument.

Example of a Paragraph Excerpt: "Some critics say that the rise of technology has made people feel more alone. But you could say that technology makes it easier to connect people around the world."

What does the sentence in bold have to do with the author's argument?

6. Fill in the missing word

Type of Question: In these questions, you have to choose the best option to finish a sentence in the paragraph. This requires a strong grasp of the structure and logic of the passage.

Example: "Studies have shown that regular exercise can help your brain work better. This shows that physical activity is good for the body and also helps keep the mind sharp. But it's important to remember that the"

Which option best fits with the rest of the sentence and makes sense in the context of the paragraph?

Steps to Book slot for GRE

GRE Reading Comprehension Tips (for answering Paragraph Argument Questions)

Focus on the Structure:

Understand how the sentences in a paragraph work together to understand how the ideas develop.

Identify Relationships:

Look at how sentences relate to each other to understand how ideas flow logically.

Analyze the Evidence:

Take apart the evidence given in the paragraph to see how well it supports the main argument.

Practice deductive reasoning:

To get better at logical reasoning, improve your ability to draw conclusions from premises.

Look for Assumptions:

To figure out how good an argument is, find the assumptions that aren't obvious.


Getting good at the GRE Reading comprehension takes careful planning and regular practise. Use the skimming method to get a general idea, read passages carefully, understand different kinds of questions, and improve your critical thinking skills. Consistent practise and a careful look at your mistakes will help you make steady progress. Take a methodical approach to each passage and question, and you'll be able to ace the GRE Reading Comprehension section and set yourself up for a great test score. If you work hard and plan ahead, you will definitely do well on this difficult but rewarding part of the GRE.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, some universities don’t make IELTS scores mandatory and some universities have waivers during admissions through which you can enter the US without IELTS.

It depends on the course you are taking up. For English language proficiency, the best tests to choose from are IELTS, PTE, and TOEFL.

A minimum of 60% is mandatory to be eligible to go abroad. For studying abroad, you may need to submit scores of IELTS, TOEFL, SAT, PTE, GMAT, or GRE.


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