The Expert’s Guide To GRE Prep While Working


Whether you’re planning on taking the general GRE or one of the GRE subject tests, you have quite a bit of test prep in your future. Many experts recommend treating your GRE prep as a full-time job, but what are you supposed to do if you already have a job? Not everybody can take a couple of weeks off (let alone a couple of months) to devote all of their time to studying.

Don’t feel discouraged! While it may be difficult, it is possible to crush the GRE while keeping your regular job. Here are three key tips for expert-level study prep.

Utilize Any Available Time

Working full-time can put a damper on your free time, especially if you’re one of many who find the office constantly zapping away any time they try to claim for themselves. Be prepared to set some boundaries with your boss and coworkers. Let them know that there will be certain times that you are unavailable because you are working on something very important. The GREs are a self-investment, make sure your coworkers realize that this is something you’re taking very seriously.

One way to utilize your time is to try making your lunch breaks a midday study session. Even sitting in your car or at a nearby café for your lunch can help you get away from distractions so you can focus on your studies. This may be one of the times where you have to set boundaries with coworkers, but it will be worth it.

You can also try utilizing your morning commute. Whether you’re taking the bus or driving yourself, there are ways you can make the most of your non-work time. Flashcards, audio lectures, and GRE specific phone apps are great ways to help you squeeze in some extra test prep each morning.

Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help

You shouldn’t feel like you have to tackle GRE prep alone. Make sure that you’re communicating with friends and family about this very busy time in your life. This way they can give you some necessary space to study, but they can also help out by just being another voice. Explaining the material to somebody who isn’t familiar with the subject forces you to think about things from a different perspective, which can be useful.

You can also consider finding a GRE tutor or class to help you make the most of your study time. By having an expert there to work through the material, you won’t waste as much time trying to figure out complex concepts on your own. They can also help you find the best quality material to make sure you’re covering the most important concepts.

Create A Study Plan

This is a very important step as it ensures that you have enough time to study everything you need to. Before you begin your test prep, write out a schedule for every day/week/month between now and your test date. You should plan out what material you’re going to go over every day and when exactly you’ll be studying. This is something that a GRE tutor can easily help you with as they’ll know exactly how you should be prepping.

A study plan can help you make sure that your study sessions are reserved exclusively for your test prep. It will also make sure that you stay on track with your test prep, so you don’t miss anything by mistake. If you tend to procrastinate, this is an especially important tool to keep you from putting anything off.