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South America is an enticing study-abroad destination that provides an array of educational and cultural experiences. This continent boasts world-class colleges and universities in countries like Argentina, Chile and Brazil, among others, known for their academic excellence and cutting-edge research opportunities.
Many of these institutions evaluate aspiring students’ applications based on their Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores. So, let’s explore the GRE requirements for South American universities and what you can do to succeed in this test.
What does GRE involve?
GRE consists of three sections –
- Verbal Reasoning – This section evaluates your competence in analyzing and assessing written content. You’ll find multiple-choice questions designed to test your aptitude in determining the meaning of words, sentences and paragraphs.
- Quantitative Reasoning – This section assesses your ability to analyze quantitative relationships and evaluate arguments critically. It includes multiple-choice questions that evaluate your capacity to interpret data and solve mathematical problems using basic formulas.
- Analytical Writing – This section evaluates your capability to compose well-structured essays in an organized manner. You are tasked with completing two essays on different topics. You’ll have some time to plan your essay before dedicating 35 minutes to the actual writing.
The GRE score ranges between 260 and 340, encompassing both the quantitative and verbal reasoning sections, each of which is scored on a scale of 130-170. The test’s analytical writing section is separately evaluated on a scale of 0-6. A GRE scorecard displays these scores as well as a percentile, which compares your performance to that of others. Universities and colleges often utilize average GRE scores as benchmarks to evaluate prospective students.
According to ETS (the GRE creators), the global average GRE scores for the verbal and quantitative reasoning sections are 153 and 150, respectively, on a scale of 170. The average score for the analytical writing section is 4.0 out of 6.0.
What is considered a good GRE score for South American universities?
Determining what constitutes a favorable GRE score out of 340 significantly hinges on the particular prerequisites of South American universities and the competitiveness of your desired academic program. While each institution has its own minimum GRE score criteria, the GRE requirements for most leading universities in South America are typically very close to the global average.
For example, the prestigious Universidade de São Paulo in Brazil, recognized as one of the top 10 universities in South America, mandates that applicants possess GRE scores of at least 155 in verbal reasoning, 158 in quantitative reasoning, and 4.0 in the analytical writing section for admission.
Notably, the GRE requirements may fluctuate among distinct departments within the same institution. For instance, a social science program might assign greater importance to the test’s verbal reasoning section, whereas research programs could lay emphasis on quantitative reasoning scores.
This variance highlights the importance of prospective students conducting thorough research into department-specific GRE requirements to assess their current status and streamline their preparation.
Importance of GRE scores for South American universities
While GRE requirements undoubtedly hold significance in admissions to the top South American universities, it’s essential to bear in mind that they constitute just one facet of your overall application. South American institutions also take into account additional factors such as your academic record, statement of purpose, letters of recommendation and research experience, ensuring a comprehensive evaluation of applicants.
This approach implies that even if your GRE scores slightly fall below the program’s average requirements, the presence of other strong components in your application can help redress your candidacy. However, in cases where candidates possess similar qualifications, universities tend to favor those with higher GRE scores. Therefore, aiming for the highest possible GRE score is an advantageous strategy to bolster your prospects of admission.
GRE requirements for top South American universities
GRE requirements can notably vary among South American universities, with top institutions often imposing more stringent score standards. Check this outline of the average GRE scores required by some esteemed universities in South America:
- Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil – This leading university requires applicants to have GRE scores of at least 155 in verbal reasoning, 158 in quantitative reasoning and 4.0 in the analytical writing section.
- University of the Andes Colombia – This renowned university in Colombia accepts applicants with a minimum GRE score of 148 in verbal reasoning, 150 in quantitative reasoning and 4.0 in analytical writing.
- Universidad Costa Rica – This university in Costa Rica doesn’t require GRE scores from all applicants. Only those applying to the biophysics graduate program are required to submit their GRE scores. For these applicants, the minimum GRE requirements are 140 in verbal reasoning, 145 in quantitative reasoning and 3.0 in analytical writing.
How long is a GRE score valid?
GRE scores are valid for a duration of five years. Being aware of this timeframe is essential when organizing your graduate studies schedule. When aspiring to apply to South American universities, it’s advantageous to account for this score validity period while devising your GRE preparation and application strategy. Keep in mind that certain South American universities favor applicants with more recent GRE scores.
How to get a good GRE score?
Here are some tips to help you achieve a good score for meeting the GRE requirements of your chosen South American university.
- Be well-informed about the GRE requirements – Begin by researching the average GRE score expected at your chosen institution. Most universities provide a range of accepted scores. Keep in mind that different programs within the same university may have varying GRE requirements, so consider the specific requirements of your target program before aiming for a particular score.
- Gain clarity on the test structure – Understanding the GRE’s format, question types, and scoring system is essential for creating an effective study plan.
- Practice with real tests – Taking full-length practice exams regularly helps you become familiar with the test’s pace and enhances your time management skills.
- Assess your competitiveness – To gauge your performance, it’s crucial to compare your score with that of individuals with similar educational backgrounds and experience. You can access this data by reviewing published reports from test takers or examining past years’ test data.
- Be consistent – Consistency is key. Not only should you compare your performance to individuals with similar backgrounds, but also evaluate whether your score consistently falls above or below that of others with similar backgrounds in previous years.
- Knowing the average GRE scores expected by your chosen South American university is crucial for your application.
- GRE requirements at South American universities are typically in line with global averages.
- Keep in mind that GRE scores are just one component of your application. Universities in South America assess candidates holistically, considering factors like academic records and recommendation letters.
- Be aware that GRE scores are valid for five years, so consider this when planning your preparation and admission.
We hope you found this blog helpful. Please reach out to us or drop a comment below if you have any questions.
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1. What is the GRE score range?
The GRE score ranges from 260 to 340, combining the quantitative reasoning and verbal reasoning sections. The analytical writing section is separately evaluated on a scale of 0-6.
2. What constitutes a good GRE score for South American universities?
A good GRE score for South American universities typically aligns closely with global averages. However, specific GRE requirements can vary significantly between universities and even different programs within the same university.
3. How long is the GRE score valid?
The GRE score remains valid for five years from the date of the test.