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I am studying for the GRE Mathematics subject exam [1]. I am looking for tips regarding how to more effectively study for it. Does anyone know of any good study materials or have any tips in general?

I would really appreciate it!


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closed as too broad by Mice Elf, muaddib, Ken, Matt Samuel, John Ma Aug 2 at 4:27

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

My main tip, which may be obvious if you've taken a sample test already, is that you must learn to work quickly if you want to answer most of the questions. I've known students who told me they were just plodding along and then freaked out when they realized there were 15 minutes left and they'd only done half the problems. This leads to terrible scores. I know this doesn't really help you study, but it's very important to know that working efficiently is crucial to getting a very good score. – KCd Jan 6 '11 at 6:12
Seconding other comments/answers, and perhaps more sharply: the GRE is a game, and you must "game it" to get your best score. Deep thinking is almost always a mistake: it's a silly multiple-choice test, after all! If you can exclude one or two out of four answers because they're ridiculous, it's worthwhile to guess. Don't figure out the answer and then look for it... too much work. Be sure to address every question. Being "sure" is irrelevant. All that kind of thing. One more time: "game" it. – paul garrett Jul 5 '11 at 18:52
I know this may be off-topic, but what is the point of taking this exam? As in, does it help somehow career-wise? – YoTengoUnLCD Aug 1 at 20:36
@YoTengoUnLCD Many graduate programs ask if you have took it and if so, what your score was. – Alfred Yerger Aug 1 at 20:49
Oh, I see. Thanks, I'm quite unfamiliar with the US education system. – YoTengoUnLCD Aug 1 at 21:32

5 Answers 5

up vote 16 down vote accepted

Studying past exams helps. I remember a few of them being somewhat difficult to track down. Here are the ones I have: 8767, 9367, 9768, 0809. If you have trouble finding them, let me know and I can send them to you.

I also used the Princeton Review book, but it is somewhat outdated in the sense that there has been content on recent exams that isn't covered in the book. Also, the older exams seemed easier than some of the more recent ones.

EDIT: The three older ones are available here: The newer one is available here:

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Are the past exams available online? – Tyler Clark Jan 6 '11 at 4:26
Somewhere. One of them is available from ETS. I'm not sure about the others. There is also this website, which might be helpful: – Vitaly Lorman Jan 6 '11 at 4:28
I have found everything except the 0809 one. Could you email that to me please? My email is – Tyler Clark Jan 6 '11 at 4:36
This might be where I found three of the older ones: – Vitaly Lorman Jan 6 '11 at 4:37
Yes, that is where I got the first three from, I cannot track down the 0809 test though. – Tyler Clark Jan 6 '11 at 4:39

I wondered the same thing some months ago and the best link I found was this one. Hope it helps.

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I worked through the Princeton Review book as well as the REA book. The latter was not great, although I learned a lot of random little things from it (e.g. generating functions, various binomial identities, methods of counting (with and without replacement blah blah blah) etc.). Beware that there are a few glaring errors in the REA book. The Princeton Review book was pretty good -- it had short reviews of the important concepts in each of the subject areas, and then mini-tests at the ends of those sections, and then cumulative tests too -- but I'm glad I worked from the two books because they covered each others' weaknesses. I went through all the problems in both, re-did the ones I got wrong and/or wasn't absolutely sure about, then went through the ones that I was still not totally comfortable with, then did that whole thing over again 2 or 3 more times. Quite a bit of work, but if you care a lot then I'd recommend it. The crucial thing (as other people have said) is to be able to work very quickly and not get stumped.

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This question is originally put in math.MO. It it closed though, @Willie Wong's comments to the question in MO are really worth reading I think.

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There are two practice exams available in Amazon. There not by ETS but may be useful nonetheless. They were written as a part of a full prep course for the GRE math subject exam. is a book by princeton review. It also contains one full prep exam.

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