If you’re taking the GRE, you’ve likely heard of GRE PowerPrep. But what exactly is it? Why does everyone use these programs? And why aren’t they perfect study tools on their own?
In this article, I’ll explain the following:
- What the GRE PowerPrep tools are.
- Why you should be using them.
- What PowerPrep is missing.
- How you can use our free detailed question explanations to enhance your GRE PowerPrep study.
What Is PowerPrep? The Good and the Bad
PowerPrep is a series of GRE-preparation tools made by ETS, the company that makes the GRE.
- PowerPrep Online consists of 2 free, full-length practice tests that mirror exactly what you will see on test day.
- PowerPrep Plus Online is a new paid service that offers 2 never-before-published exams (each $39.95) along with additional features, including AWA scoring, difficulty ratings for each question, and correct answer explanations.
The series also includes the free PowerPrep Test Preview Tool, which demonstrates the test structure, question types, and user interface you will experience on test day. It’s useful for familiarizing yourself with the test if you are a beginner, but it doesn’t provide much study material.
You can find more details on how to download PowerPrep Online or purchase PowerPrep Plus Online on the GRE website.
If you’ve read our GRE blog for long enough, you know that we highly recommend using official material from ETS to study for the GRE. The makers of the exam are guaranteed to have the most accurate material out there. This means that with the ETS GRE PowerPrep software, you can rest easy knowing that you aren’t studying anything that wouldn’t appear on the real GRE exam.
Unfortunately, unless you get every single question right on the practice tests, questions alone aren’t enough to help you study effectively. The real study comes when you get questions wrong. Then you have to carefully analyze the question and determine the following:
- Why the correct answer is correct.
- Why your answer is not correct.
- Where you went wrong.
- How to get the question right next time.
These questions are often hard to answer on your own, which is where detailed answer explanations come in handy.
ETS doesn’t offer any explanations for the PowerPrep Online tests, either for free or for pay. So while you’re told what the correct answer is for every question, you don’t know why that answer is correct or how to get to it. This is frustrating for many students, who take to community forums to ask other test takers (often as confused as they are) about the questions.
PowerPrep Plus Online does offer correct answer explanations for both never-before-published exams … if you’re willing to pay the $80 to access them. However, these explanations are really just correct answer explanations — they’re fairly superficial and focus largely on explaining why the answer is correct, not how to reach it or how to avoid wrong answer traps. Explanations like this can be helpful if you completely misinterpreted the question, but they don’t offer much in the way of transferable skills: strategies you can apply on similar questions moving forward to ensure you don’t make the same mistakes again.
How to Improve Your Study With Our GRE PowerPrep Question Explanations
PowerPrep GRE questions are great, but the lack of detailed question explanations makes them hard to study with. At PrepScholar, we think that using accurate study material is so important that we decided to create free in-depth question explanations for every single ETS PowerPrep question.
These all-new PowerPrep GRE question explanations are written by the top-scoring GRE experts who write questions and explanations for our GRE Prep Program. These experts have deconstructed each problem with a fine-toothed comb, using their nuanced understanding of GRE question structure and years of experience identifying the traps students fall into on various question types to write high-quality explanations that will help you understand how the problem works, what mistakes you made, and how to get this type of problem right next time.
How to Use This Page
To find a specific explanation use the search function (Control + F for Windows, Command + F for Mac) to search this page for the first few words of the ETS PowerPrep question.
Alternatively, if you know which test and which section your question comes from in the ETS PowerPrep software, you can use the tables below to narrow down your search. Once you’ve found the correct section, you can look through the questions in that section until you find the one you want.
Once you find your question, click on the link to take you to the explanation.
We’ll be releasing new PowerPrep GRE explanations every week, so stay tuned!
PowerPrep Online Test 1
|First Verbal Reasoning Section
- Dramatic literature often ___ the history of a culture in that it takes
- Since she believed him to be both candid and trustworthy, she
- Given how ___ the shortcomings of the standard economic model
- There has been much hand-wringing about how unprepared
- The narratives that vanquished peoples have created of their
- The question of ___ in photography has lately become nontrivial
- Early critics of Emily Dickinson’s poetry mistook for
- The macromolecule RNA is common to all living beings, and DNA
- While in many ways their personalities could not have been more
- Even in this business, where ___ is part of everyday life, a talent for
- Select the sentence that provides support for an answer to a
- Based on information contained in the passage, which of the
- In the context in which it appears, “temporal” most nearly means
- The author of the passage mentions the classical conception of
- In the argument given, the two highlighted portions play which of
- Which of the following, if true, most seriously undermines the
- According to the passage, which of the following is true of the rock
- In the final paragraph of the passage, the author is concerned
- According to the passage, Bond hypothesized that which of the
- It can be inferred from the passage that in sediment cores from the
|Second Verbal Reasoning Section
- In the 1950s, the country’s inhabitants were ___: most of them
- With the 1985 discovery of an ozone hole over Antarctica, an
- The ___ nature of classical tragedy in Athens belies the modern
- That the President manages the economy is an assumption ___ the
- Of course anyone who has ever perused an unmodernized text of
- To the untutored eye the tightly forested Ardennes hills around
- The ex-minister’s real crime, in the eyes of his ___ political friends
- Dreams are ___ in and of themselves, but, when combined with
- International financial issues are typically ___ by the United States
- Despite the pride that the play’s characters take in their
- It is his dubious distinction to have proved what nobody would
- The traditional gap between theorists and experimentalists is
- The vegetation at Stone Mountain, the best known of the large
- At no point in her investigation does Tate allow ___ commentary
- Since becoming commissioner, Mr. Vincente has challenged the
- Room acoustics design criteria are determined according to the
- Far from viewing Jefferson as a skeptical but enlightened
- Stories are a haunted genre; hardly ___ kind of story, the ghost
- The playwright’s approach is ___ in that her works ___ the theatrical
- I’ve long anticipated this retrospective of the artist’s work, hoping
- Higher energy prices would have many (i) ______ effects on society
- But they pay little attention to the opposite and more treacherous
- Once White stepped down from a political platform, where his
- Clearly the government faced a dilemma: it could hardly ___ trials
- The hodgepodge nature of local and federal law enforcement and
- Economic competition among nations may lead to new forms of
- The author of the passage would probably consider which of the
- In which sentence of the passage does the author provide
- In the context in which it appears, “realization” most nearly means
- It can be inferred from the passage that the author would agree
- The author mentions “ancient Mesopotamia” primarily in order to
- Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the support
- Which of the following statements is supported by the passage?
- The passage provides information on each of the following EXCEPT
- In the context in which it appears, “exceed” most nearly means
- Which of the following best characterizes the function of the
- The author’s primary purpose in the passage is to
- In which of the following does the author of the passage reinforce a
- It can be inferred from the passage that the author believes which
- The passage implies which of the following about the relationship
- The passage suggests which of the following about “skeleton
- In the context of the passage as a whole, “address” is closest in
- The author of the passage suggests that present-day readers
- Which of the following, if true, would make the information
- According to the passage, which of the following is true of the
- Which of the following, if true, most helps to explain why the time
- Which of the following best describes the organization of the
- The author suggests which of the following about most classical
- The passage states that Johnson composed all of the following
- According to the passage, which of the following factors help
- The passage suggests that two planets formed in close orbits that
- It can be inferred from the passage that the “rules and regulations”
- The highlighted sentence has which of the following functions in
- Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the
- The author of the passage attributes the influence of British
- The author of the passage mentions East End working-class
|First Quantitative Reasoning Section
- O is the center of the circle, and the perimeter of △AOB is 6
- A certain recipe requires 3/2 cups of sugar and makes 2 dozen
- The area of rectangular region ABCD The area of trapezoidal region
- PS = SR
- 6 < x < 7 y = 8
- The average (arithmetic mean) of 100 measurements is 23, and the
- List L consists of the numbers 1, √2, x, and x^2, where x > 0, and the
- One of the roots of the equation x^2 + kx – 6 = 0 is 3, and k is a
- If x and y are the tens and the units digit, respectively, of the
- In the xy-plane, what is the slope of the line whose equation is
- If p is a negative number and 0 < s < |p|, which of the following must
- The twelve numbers shown represent the ages, in years, of the
- Of the 750 participants in a professional meeting, 450 are female
- The sum of the five average ratings was calculated for each of the
- Airline B’s average rating for convenience was approximately
- If each of the average ratings was the arithmetic mean of the
- A developer has land that has x feet of lake frontage. The land is to
- If the diameter of circle C is 3 times the diameter of circle D, then
- Last year Kate spent between 1/4 and 1/3 of her gross income on
- The quantities S and T are positive and are related by the equation
|Second Quantitative Reasoning Section
- List A: 0, 5, 10, 15, 20 List B: 5, 10, 15, 20, 25
- (x – 2y)(x + 2y) = 4
- A power station is located on the boundary of a square region that
- On the number line, the distance between x and 0 is 3
- The slope of line k 1
- The probability that both events E and F occur is 0.42
- The area of each of the three circular regions in the figure shown is
- How many three-digit positive integers are there such that the
- A teacher took a container filled with 16 liters of water to a school
- In triangle ABC, the measure of angle A is 25° and the measure of
- In the sunshine, an upright pole 12 feet tall is casting a shadow 8
- If a is the smallest prime number greater than 21 and b is the
- For the 3 numbers in a list, the average (arithmetic mean) and the
- The ratio of the number of male freshmen to the number of female
- How many of the enrolled students are not majoring in
- Sophomores constitute approximately what percent of the total
- A third-grade teacher has n boxes, each containing 12 pencils
- If (x + 2)(x – 3) = 0 and x > 1/2, what is the value of x^-2
- If j and k are integers and j-k is even, which of the following must be
- A fruit stand sells two varieties of apples at 1.00and1.25 per pound
- The list price of a certain tool is x dollars. In Store A the original
- The number of integers between 100 and 500 that are multiples of
- np < 0
- a and b are positive integers
- In the xy-coordinate plane, triangle RST is equilateral. Points R and
- The length of rectangle B is 10 percent less than the length of
- a < 0 < b
- For the 31 used cars sold last month at Car Dealership X , which of
- If x is an integer, which of the following must be an even integer?
- A rectangular game board is composed of identical squares
- The Sun is approximately 1,400 million kilometers from the planet
- What is the least integer n such that 1/2^n < 0.001
- The figure above shows a regular 9-sided polygon. What is the value
- How many of the six corporate sectors listed each contributed
- From 1988 to 1991, which corporate sector decreased its support
- The two corporate sectors that increased their support for the arts
- If a ≤ b ≤ c ≤ d ≤ e ≤ 110 and the average (arithmetic mean) of a, b, c, d
- A car manufacturer produced a car at a cost of d dollars and sold it
- The function f is defined for all numbers x by f(x) = x^2 + x. If t is a
- A tailor used 30 buttons that had an average (Arithmetic mean)
- x y
- The area of △ABD The area of △BCD
- Ray is 2 inches taller than Lin, and Ray is 3 inches taller than Sam
- The greatest prime factor of 1000 The greatest prime factor of 68
- x > 1
- A rectangular garden has a perimeter of 92 feet. If the length of the
- How many 2-digit positive integers are there such that the product
- If (2x + 1)(x – 5) = 2 (x^2 – 1), what is the value of x
- At a certain fruit stand, the price of an apple is twice the price of an
- Judy drove 20 miles from her house to a theater at an average rate
- Approximately what percent of the females are juniors
- If 40 percent of the social science majors are females, how many
- Students not majoring in humanities constitute what percent of
- If x > 0, then (√(4x) + √(9x))^2 =
- Which of the following points are on the graphs of both the
- The average (arithmetic mean) of the 11 numbers in a list is 14. If
PowerPrep Online Test 2
|First Verbal Reasoning Section
|Second Verbal Reasoning Section
|First Quantitative Reasoning Section
|Second Quantitative Reasoning Section
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