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General GRE Math Score Importance to Engineering Schools

  1. Oct 17, 2013 #1
    I am a physics major who is going to graduate soon, and am taking the general and physics GREs. I am looking at both physics and engineering graduate schools. I believe that the physics GRE is pretty much irrelevant to engineering schools, but I have had difficulty with the quantitative portion of the general GRE. I know it is easy math, and that ideally I should ace it, but I have had an alternate route to college and despite studying, spend too much time on the problems.

    I have been told that anything below 60% percentile in the quantitative portion is a "real problem" for physics graduate schools. Is this a reasonable assumption for engineering schools as well?

    I do fine on the other portions of the GRE, have good grades and have good letters from people I have done research with.

    Thank you
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 17, 2013 #2
    Plain and simple, the math quantitative section's importance depends on the graduate schools in question. Each one values it differently. Some schools will weight them heavier than others.

    Please note: The GRE quantitative portion is not any math you have not experienced already. It is understandable if you are a bad test taker or just have issues with 4 hour long exams, but you should be able to do the math required in the GRE.

    It does not hurt to retake it if you still have time.
  4. Oct 17, 2013 #3
    Let me add that, by "good" grades I mean a ~3.5 GPA. I do not expect to go to a top program in either physics or engineering, but would like to go to a "respected" one.

    I have retaken it once already and scored 1 point better than the time before. I know I understand the math, but I just can't seem to think through the problems in 35 min. Specifically, I do well on the 1st math section (miss perhaps 2 out of 20), then the next section is what kills me. I am debating taking it a third time.
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2013
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