Common GRE Vocabulary
In this lesson you will have a chance to work with some common examples of GRE vocabulary. Discover their meaning, hear them in context, and test your own understanding with a brief quiz.
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Vocab on the GRE
So, you want to go to graduate school? Good for you! But in order to get there, you’ll likely have to take the Graduate Records Examination , a standardized test to evaluate knowledge and intellectual ability required for graduate school. Generally just called the GRE, these tests can be intimidating. The GRE has three parts: a quantitative section testing mathematic and logic skills, an analytical writing section testing writing skills, and a verbal section. The verbal section is largely based on vocabulary, and this is where memorization and reasoning skills come in handy. Now, obviously, we can’t go through every possible vocab word on the GRE. But, for your intellectual pleasure, we present here twenty-five common GRE words in alphabetical order through the story of GRE hopeful, John Study.
The Vocab-Infused Ballad of John Study
This is John Study. He has completed an undergraduate degree and wants to be a professional academic, but he is feeling ambivalent about applying to grad school, meaning he has mixed feelings. Why? Frankly, the GRE terrifies him. Despite the fact that his academic career is off to an auspicious and very favorable start, he is nervous to take the test. Now, nerves tend to make John Study hostile and aggressive, or belligerent , and if I can be completely candid and completely honest, this is problematic. Generally, John Study is so capricious , so whimsical and unpredictable, that he doesn’t have a care in the world. But as the witnesses can confirm, or corroborate , that night was different. Oh, if only John Study had been enervated , drained of energy, by his nervous predisposition. Or if only this state was as short-lived and fleeting, as ephemeral , as a passing moment. But, no. In his nervousness, John Study began to yell equivocally , in vague or misleading ways, at strangers. Possessed by the GRE vocab that haunted his dreams, this would-be scholar, this aspiring erudite , chose only the most esoteric words, those known only to a specific few, to shout furiously into the darkness. If John Study had been more fastidious , more attentive and nit-picky, about his demeanor that night, he may have avoided offending the dim, but very large passerby who immediately began to inculpate , accuse or blame, John Study of mocking him. John Study couldn’t believe he was being accused of wrong-doing and insisted that the words he was shouting were harmless and innocent, that they were innocuous . Still, John Study realized he was being a bit too loquacious , too talkative, to the aggressive stranger, so instead John Study tried to calm the situation by demonstrating his magnanimity , his generousness. This rapid and unexpected personality change made John Study seem mercurial , and this irritated the stranger even further. So, John Study decided to go for the pragmatic , the practical, approach: apologizing profusely , in a ceaseless outpouring of emotion. Now, unbeknownst to John Study, this behemoth was a prolific , a very productive and active, circus performer; a strong man, in fact. Which turned out to be so providential , so fortunate and opportune, as to change everything. The stranger felt sorry for John Study, and suddenly the once reticent and tight-lipped giant became sanguine , cheerful and optimistic, and began to juggle and smile warmly. He and John Study talked and soon became friends. The crisis was averted, and John Study returned home, falling into a deep sleep. He awoke the next morning realizing that he was more prepared than he thought, and suddenly his nervous panic seemed so trite , so silly and unimportant, that he laughed in relief. Still, the events of the previous night had almost gotten him into serious trouble, and in a loud and clamorous voice, he shouted vociferously , ‘These vocab words will kill me, yet!’
Like our friend, John Study, you may be nervous about some of the vocab that will appear on the verbal section of the standardized test to evaluate knowledge and intellectual ability required for graduate school, called the Graduate Records Examination , or GRE for short. Take a breath and relax. You can do it! Learn some common words, like those in this story, and practice using them in context. Oh, and, as for John Study? He went on to pass the GRE, have a very successful career, and as will happen in these stories, lived happily ever after!
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