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GRE Quantitative Guide

The following is a proven plan to improve your quantitative skills. We have prepared a comprehensive GRE quantitative study plan to help you increase your score based on recommendations from global experts.

The GRE Quantitative Study Plan Includes:

  1. Student categorization as per the diagnostic scores

  2. Quantitative Study Plan: Concept Building & Practice

  3. General Preparation Tips

Please use this step-by-step guide to identify which category of students you fall into and find out which resources to use and how much to focus on concept building, learning strategies and practicing questions in order to get the most out of your preparation.

1) Students categorization as per the diagnostic scores

The first essential step is to take a GRE Diagnostic test without preparation to analyze the student's proficiency levels. We have categorized students into four as per their diagnostic scores. Each category has its own set of guidelines and recommended resources as per the GRE Quantitative Study Plan. Your initial score will determine, which category you fall into, which will, in turn, help you plan your preparation and decide upon a test date accordingly.


Diagnostic Scores: (160+)

Students with Strong Quantitative Background


Diagnostic Scores: (155-160)

Students with Good Quantitative Background


Diagnostic Scores: (150-154)

Students with Average Quantitative Background


Diagnostic Scores: (+130-149)

Students with Weak Quantitative Background

2) Quantitative Study Plan: Concept Building & Practice


Students with Strong Quantitative Skills

Material: ETS + Scholar Den

If you fall into this category, you already have a strong mathematics foundation and won’t need to build concepts from scratch.

Concept Building:

The first step during your GRE quantitative study plan is to learn concepts. For concepts, students should go through the ETS Maths review book. Once you revised all the concepts You just need to spend a considerable amount of time practicing and identifying any weak areas you might have.  For that purpose, the recommended materials are ETS and Scholar Den.

After that start with Appendix A of the ETS quantitative book after you’re done with the diagnostic test. This section covers the entire syllabus of the GRE and is very easy to follow. For example, in Section 4, the book discusses histograms, relative frequency distributions, probability distributions, and the normal distribution and relates all these concepts quite well. Therefore, Appendix A presents the gist of everything you might see in the test. Students who are already good at the material just need to review it once before they can dive into practice questions. Also, this overview is a great chance to identify any weak areas you might have quickly.

There are a total of 4 sections in the appendix, and you can be done with them in as little as 4 days. This is great for a quick review of all the concepts covered in the GRE. Additionally, it also features some practice questions too for each concept discussed. You just need to spend a considerable amount of time to practice and identify your weak areas. For that purpose, the recommended materials are ETS and Scholar Den.


You must practice questions from Scholar Den under a time constraint in order to get your pace up for the high-pressure in the real exam. It is preferable to use the Scholar Den practice test or custom practice for this purpose.  After getting done with Scholar Den, you must practice all practice questions from the ETS books to familiarize yourself with the type of questions you’ll find in the GRE.


Students with Average Quant Background (150-154)

Material: Manhattan + ETS + Scholar Den

Concept Buiding:

Students who have some gaps in the mathematics concepts will generally fall into this category. These students should first focus on learning and revising all the basic mathematical concepts required for the GRE exam and then work on building strategies before finally diving into practice questions. For basic concept building, one of the best resources is Manhattan guides. It’s highly recommended for concept building. However, there are other useful free resources for concept building out there too such as Khan Academy and Don’t Memorise.


You must focus on doing a lot of practice.  Start with ETS and then finish all questions by Scholar Den. If you still need additional practice, then contact mentors at Scholar Den, they will guide you further.


Students with Weak Quant Background (+130-149)

Material: Khan Academy + Don’t Memorize + ETS + Scholar Den

Concept Buiding:

If you belong to this group, you will need to put in a lot of effort to aim for a competitive score in the quantitative section. This category is for the students who are not from a mathematics-heavy field (e.g. medicine, humanities, etc.), or never liked numbers much. Such students, like those of category 3, should first focus on learning and revising all the basic mathematics concepts required for the GRE exam, and then work on strategies and finally practice questions.

After learning the core concepts, students should work on learning strategies and then practice questions.


Start with ETS practice questions and then custom practice Scholar Den questions.

3) General Preparation Tips

Once you have clarified the concepts and learned the strategies, it’s time to start practicing those concepts on real questions. For example, if you have covered algebra concepts, then you should move on to algebra practice questions. If you feel that your algebra concepts are not clear, then you should go back to them instead of simply moving on to the next section. Moreover, after each practice session, you should give some time to review your weaknesses and then focus on improving them. Once you get a decent hang of those concepts, you should focus on mastering them by practicing questions, starting from easy difficulty level and then moving upwards, from ETS, and Scholar Den.

Scholar Den is listed directly after the official GRE guides because their questions are updated on regular basis. Additionally, they have video explanations and analyses for the question to help you review those questions and identify your mistakes. Remember that reviewing is very step important when working on improving your score.

If you are finding it difficult to get medium and hard level questions correct then we would recommend practicing medium and hard level questions from Scholar Den.

Error Logs:

During the practice session, maintain an error log and identify your weak areas. Scholar Den Analytics will help you do this.

Identify topics that you need to work more on based on your error logs. Refer back to the recommended resources to master your concept and strategies for those topics. After every 2-3 weeks of practice, take a mock test to gauge your progress. It is important that you finish questions from ETS and Scholar Den before you appear for the exam.


In the last three weeks before the test, try to attempt at least 10 mock exams from recommended resources such as ETS and Manhattan in that order. Make sure you attempt the complete mock during the last days.

If you score +150 in the quantitative in your diagnostic score then you should take your exam within 3 months. Don’t unnecessarily extend the preparation time, it will only impact your concentration and affect your focus. But remember that this is only a GRE quantitative study plan; timelines can change if you need more time to improve your verbal section.

To practice Scholar Den questions, you should visit Scholar Den Website

You can also read the next article: What the GRE really measures?