The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

mhazelm
Posts: 193
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 3:33 pm

The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

Postby mhazelm » Fri Dec 12, 2008 1:32 pm

I studied with a friend who got 490 on a practice test two weeks before the Oct. PGRE (at the same time, I got something like 580). I decided to wait for the Nov. test and study more, while she took the Oct. PGRE. She got 600 on the actual test, I did much worse taking the Nov. test (though I had brought my practice scores to 800). I am wondering if maybe it's because there were more international applicants taking the Nov. test.Isn't it only offered in November for international applicants?

If Americans score lower than international students, on average then it makes sense that when we test with the students who have to score high (international) that our percentile scores are even lower than they would be with just the American pool taking the test. In other words, we performed about the same as we would have during the Oct. or April test, but because there are more people taking it who scored high (90%), it is harder to get a good percentile score.

Is that right? Maybe I am just trying to rationalize why my score was so bad (seriously, I don't get it - I thought I did fine and felt pretty good, though I only answered 60 questions...).

tmc
Posts: 112
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2008 1:40 pm

Re: The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

Postby tmc » Fri Dec 12, 2008 1:39 pm

The scaled score is built to try to account for that.
Yes, your percentile will probably be lower in Nov. than Oct., but the scaled score should be the same.

User avatar
coreycwgriffin
Posts: 249
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:28 am

Re: The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

Postby coreycwgriffin » Fri Dec 12, 2008 1:45 pm

mhazelm wrote:I studied with a friend who got 490 on a practice test two weeks before the Oct. PGRE (at the same time, I got something like 580). I decided to wait for the Nov. test and study more, while she took the Oct. PGRE. She got 600 on the actual test, I did much worse taking the Nov. test (though I had brought my practice scores to 800). I am wondering if maybe it's because there were more international applicants taking the Nov. test.Isn't it only offered in November for international applicants?

If Americans score lower than international students, on average then it makes sense that when we test with the students who have to score high (international) that our percentile scores are even lower than they would be with just the American pool taking the test. In other words, we performed about the same as we would have during the Oct. or April test, but because there are more people taking it who scored high (90%), it is harder to get a good percentile score.

Is that right? Maybe I am just trying to rationalize why my score was so bad (seriously, I don't get it - I thought I did fine and felt pretty good, though I only answered 60 questions...).


Your situation sounds exactly the same as mine, and I too have spent the past week trying to rationalize why I did so poorly.

mhazelm
Posts: 193
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 3:33 pm

Re: The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

Postby mhazelm » Fri Dec 12, 2008 1:57 pm

@ coreycwgriffin,

Yeah, I have no idea what happened. I felt really good about the ones I answered. Granted, there were a lot of "guesses" where I'd narrowed it down 50/50. Maybe they were all wrong. But I looked several up when I got home and had guessed right. So, I don't know. If we both end up retaking it next year, we should take the October test!

I am just hoping to get in SOMEWHERE. I know I can do okay, because I'm already doing research in my field, and I've taken math graduate classes, so I am capable of them. It's just a question of whether good grades, recs, etc. will be enough now...

Maybe I will take the math subject GRE next year and go into that instead.

scallions
Posts: 29
Joined: Fri Oct 31, 2008 12:06 pm

Re: The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

Postby scallions » Fri Dec 12, 2008 2:26 pm

I think we're sisters mhazelm or something. I clearly remember answering 50-60 questions, not guessing unless I narrowed it down to two or three and felt fairly confident about the bulk of it. But then I did the math and I somehow did WORSE than just blind guessing...

Yeaaah, totally going to take it next October if it comes to that :twisted:

User avatar
Helio
Posts: 809
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2007 7:11 pm

Re: The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

Postby Helio » Fri Dec 12, 2008 2:43 pm

the nov. test has a lot more test takers (oct. had 12000+) because ETS does not understand the phrase "world-wide on three dates" as they only seem to offer the test once in India and China, so you get a rush from those people to take the test and they usually do better than the americans, but i still surprised that my score would have gotten me around 60%

mhazelm
Posts: 193
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 3:33 pm

Re: The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

Postby mhazelm » Fri Dec 12, 2008 5:32 pm

60% would have been heaven. Hell, 40% would have been great. I'd even be glad to get the 30% percentile score that my friend got. But no, I did FAR worse than that.

I am baffled. The practice test I took 2 weeks before the Nov. test I scored 800, so I thought I had improved a lot in my extra weeks' studying. Maybe I missed a bubble somewhere.

The worst part is telling all my professors who want to know. My research advisor and the other prof. I have letters of rec. from were really surprised at my score. I feel like I let them down. And obviously I let myself down.

But at least there's a few of us on this forum who are all score triplets! yay for us. We have skills. We just don't do well with standardized tests!

User avatar
Andromeda
Posts: 127
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 3:17 pm

Re: The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

Postby Andromeda » Fri Dec 12, 2008 8:02 pm

I did both the Oct and Nov test, and did *slightly* better in November. I don't think there was a significant difference between the two, really.

User avatar
coreycwgriffin
Posts: 249
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:28 am

Re: The problem with taking the PGRE in Nov. vs. Oct... ?

Postby coreycwgriffin » Sat Dec 13, 2008 4:57 pm

mhazelm wrote:The worst part is telling all my professors who want to know. My research advisor and the other prof. I have letters of rec. from were really surprised at my score. I feel like I let them down. And obviously I let myself down.


I have refused to tell anyone, even professors, what I got. Only that I was ashamed of it.




Return to “Scores and Score Reporting”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest