The Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) is a standardized test that is an admissions requirement for most graduate schools in the United States. The GRE is owned and administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). According to ETS, the GRE aims to measure verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, analytical writing, and critical thinking skills that have been acquired over a long period of learning. The content of the GRE consists of certain specific algebra, geometry, arithmetic, and vocabulary sections. The GRE General Test is offered as a computer-based exam administered at Prometric testing centers. In the graduate school admissions process, the level of emphasis that is placed upon GRE scores varies widely between schools and departments within schools. The importance of a GRE score can range from being a mere admission formality to an important selection factor.
The cost to take the test is US$205, although ETS will reduce the fee under certain circumstances. They also promote financial aid to those GRE applicants who prove economic hardship. ETS does not release scores that are older than five years, although graduate program policies on the acceptance of scores older than five years will vary.