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The Best GRE Test Prep Companies

What's the Best GRE Prep Service Online?

It's a critical question, because if you're headed to graduate school, then the GRE (Graduate Record Examination) is an infamous hurdle that you'll have to deal with one way or another. The GRE test plays a significant role in the admissions process for many graduate programs. It serves as a standardized measure that allows universities to assess applicants' academic readiness and potential to succeed in advanced studies.

For institutions, the GRE provides an objective tool to differentiate among applicants, especially when faced with a large pool of candidates. It helps in predicting how well students might perform in their initial year of graduate school, offering insight into their cognitive abilities and analytical thinking. Moreover, the GRE can assist in awarding merit-based scholarships, helping to allocate financial aid to deserving students.

Thursday, June 20th

2024 GRE Test Prep Company Reviews

Magoosh Review Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award 5 Star Rating


5 Star Rating Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award

Where other online-test prep costs many hundreds of dollars for time-consuming courses covering a huge amount of materials, Magoosh offers a balanced, reasonably priced, and high-quality GRE test prep product. As the only GRE prep on our list with official GRE content, and with an encouraging +5 score guarantee, Magoosh has earned high marks and the top spot on our list for its economically-priced, high-quality materials.

Target Test Prep Review 4.5 Star Rating

Target Test Prep

4.5 Star Rating

Target Test Prep is one of the best GRE test prep values on our list. With robust study materials combined with data-driven analysis and customizable study plans, there really is something for everyone here. While their tutors cost more than the average, their self-led and live-online offerings are comparably priced to competitors. Target Test Prep is extremely well-rounded and could be the perfect choice if you want an all-in-one site for GRE test prep.

Achievable Review 4.5 Star Rating


4.5 Star Rating

Founded by Silicon Valley investors experienced with Google and video game marketing, Achievable sought to fill a gap in the market by applying adaptive learning techniques from language-learning apps to test preparation services. While primarily marketed towards test prep in the financial and business sectors, Achievable's intuitive tools have some excellent GRE prep, whose science-based, AI-customized learning and review schedules have earned them a second-place finish on our list.

Manhattan Prep Review 4 Star Rating

Manhattan Prep

4 Star Rating

With its roots in high-end Manhattan-based tutoring, Manhattan Prep was purchased by Kaplan in 2009, and since then has acted as a high-quality tutoring-focused subsidiary of Kaplan. While undeniably expensive, if you have the budget allocated for premier test prep, then Manhattan Prep's highly-rated (and competitively paid) tutors could be an excellent choice for your GRE studies.

Kaplan Review 3.5 Star Rating


3.5 Star Rating

As one of the largest test prep companies out there, Kaplan is well known for their increasingly-expensive tiers of test prep plans. While Kaplan is certainly pricey, and has a respectable volume of GRE test prep material, they are not necessarily the best option for every student. If you need a heavily-structured online experience, or feel you could benefit from a classroom or tutor, then Kaplan is well worth your consideration. Otherwise, we think you would likely be better served through a combination of free materials, high-rated self-led GRE test prep, and individual study aids.

Prep Scholar Review 3 Star Rating

Prep Scholar

3 Star Rating

Prep Scholar is one of the cheapest offerings on our list, but that doesn't necessarily mean they're the best. Though the amount of GRE test prep resources they provide for the price is respectable, they ultimately provide fewer practice tests and less support than competitors. If that doesn't bother you, and you just need some structured strategies and lessons for cheap, then Prep Scholar could very well be a good pick.

The Princeton Review Review 3 Star Rating

The Princeton Review

3 Star Rating

The Princeton Review is infamous for their advertisements that seem to follow you everywhere (and we think they should be infamous for their terribly-designed website as well). That being said, The Princeton Review's offerings are par-for-the-course for GRE test prep, and are slightly overpriced for the live-online classes you receive. While there is certainly nothing wrong with their tutoring, live-online, and self lead classes, this company is slightly outclassed on most metrics by competitors on our list.

Varsity Tutors Review 3 Star Rating

Varsity Tutors

3 Star Rating

Varsity Tutors is a well-regarded tutoring service known for reasonably priced one-on-one tutoring. When it comes to the GRE however, their offerings range far beyond tutoring alone. Keep in mind that - according to employee reviews - Varsity Tutors tends to rely on tutors paid in the $15-$20/hour range, even as they charge $50-$100 for tutoring. In addition to hiding their tutoring prices behind a "consultation" (read: call with a sales rep trained to pressure you into a purchase), their self-study and live-online courses are rather average, and as such we generally do not recommend Varsity Tutors for the GRE.

GRE Max Review 2 Star Rating


2 Star Rating

GREmax is a subsidiary arm of Testmax, and offers GRE test prep tutoring integrated with their proprietary app. However, GREmax offers almost no information as to the qualifications of their tutors, their general GRE prep philosophies, or anything on the preparatory material they integrate into their tutoring services. As GREmax charges a premium for poorly-detailed services, we cannot recommend them for your GRE test prep.

Peterson's Review 1.5 Star Rating


1.5 Star Rating

Not necessarily specializing in any form of test prep, Peterson's earns most of its business through strategic partnerships with the U.S. military and ex-service members. For better or worse, their materials are not top-notch, and not the best value for their price. So unless you are receiving some form of military discount or referral, we don't recommend Peterson's for your GRE test prep.

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Continued from above...

The GRE consists of three key components: verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and analytical writing. These components collectively evaluate an applicant's cognitive abilities, communication skills, and analytical prowess. Such a comprehensive assessment is crucial in identifying candidates who possess the skills necessary for advanced academic work. By incorporating both quantitative and qualitative aspects, the GRE offers a well-rounded perspective on an applicant's intellectual capabilities, and offers a common benchmark for comparing candidates from various academic backgrounds and cultures.

Many institutions allocate scholarships to outstanding students as a way to incentivize excellence and attract top talent. GRE scores can play a pivotal role in awarding these scholarships, as they offer a quantifiable measure of an applicant's potential contribution to the academic community. High GRE scores can bolster an applicant's eligibility for financial assistance, making higher education more accessible to deserving individuals.

As it stands, the GRE continues to play a pivotal role in many graduate school admissions. With that in mind, the following factors can help you evaluate GRE preparation plans to achieve the highest score possible:

  • Cost: Paying for GRE test prep services can range from affordable to very expensive. Personalized instruction and tutoring can focus on specific problem areas that you've identified, but this tailored approach may cost more than you want to spend. Self-paced learning systems are more affordable, but are more generalized and rely on your dedication to study on your own.
  • Score guarantees: Many GRE test prep companies offer score guarantees but place significant caveats around actually getting a refund through that guarantee. Usually it will include restrictions around setting a baseline score (you have to have already taken an official GRE or a proctored facsimile), and completion of all course materials (which is sometimes made artificially difficult). In short, be sure to read the fine print.
  • Time: Be honest with yourself about how much time you have to study. Many students start out by purchasing pricey test-prep packages, and then find themselves overwhelmed with the amount of work. Take stock of your schedule, and choose a mixture of free resources, self-lead test-prep, or time-intensive live-online/tutored classes accordingly.

Top Consumer Reviews has done the preliminary research for you, so if you're going to be taking the GRE, and are overwhelmed by the high price and bold claims of most test-prep options, don't worry. We've found the best, most highly rated, and most economical GRE test prep options for your consideration. Before you begin studying, take a moment to browse our curated list, and find the GRE prep that best suits your budget and your needs.

The Best GRE Test Prep Companies Compare GRE Test Prep Companies Compare GRE Test Prep Company Reviews What are the best GRE Test Prep Companies Best GRE Test Prep Company Reviews

GRE Test Prep Company FAQ

GRE stands for Graduate Record Examinations. This is a standardized test required by many graduate schools in the US and Canada. The scores that a student receives on their GRE test play a role in whether or not they are accepted into a potential graduate program. Sometimes the GRE is taken multiple times until a satisfactory score is received.
The GRE tests students on critical thinking, analytical writing, quantitative reasoning, and verbal reasoning. An individual score is given for verbal reasoning (130-170), quantitative reasoning (130-170), and analytical writing (0-6). The test questions consist of multiple choice, numeric entry, and essay writing.
There are six total sections on the GRE exam. It usually takes about 3 hours and 45 minutes to complete the test from beginning to end. For verbal reasoning there are two 30-minute sections, each containing 20 questions. For quantitative reasoning there are two 35-minute sections, each containing 20 questions. The third section is analytical writing with two separately-timed tasks. One asks you to analyze an issue and one asks you to analyze an argument. After the third section, there is an optional 10-minute break for test-takers to get refocused for the remainder of the exam. You may be asked to complete an unscored, research section at the end of the test.
Most people would agree that you can't cram for the GRE. If you do, you'll likely get an unsatisfactory score that reflects how little effort you put in. It is recommended that you heavily study for at least 4-12 weeks before attempting the GRE. Many test prep courses are designed to help you study over the course of a year, to make sure you are familiar with the material and are able to obtain a high score on your first try.
The cost for the GRE test can vary slightly year to year. Most recently, the fee was $213 for test-takers within the United States. If you are signed up to take the GRE and need to reschedule, you'll pay a fee of approximately $50 to have the exam administered at another time.
Many GRE test prep services offer some free resources to get you started with your studies. For tutoring services or monthly subscriptions to books, practice tests, flash cards and more, you can expect to pay anywhere from $150 to $2,000. Some of the most expensive courses include access to materials for a year or more and usually guarantee a certain test score. They include everything you need to succeed and feel confident when you take the GRE.
Not all test prep services offer the same study materials for the GRE. You'll find a mix of resources like practice tests, one-on-one tutoring, practice essay questions, vocabulary flashcards, diagnostic tests, strategy sessions, and more. The tools that you need to get a good score on the GRE are readily available through many different GRE test prep services.
If you are unhappy with your GRE score, you can retake it every 21 days. However, you are only allowed to take it 5 times within a period of 12 months. Taking the test multiple times will not hurt your chances of getting into graduate school, since you can choose to only submit your highest score.

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