Frequently Asked Questions
Hourly vs. Structured Course logistics
How much preparation should I plan on?
How do I sign up for the group class?
What if I have to be absent?
Should I take GRE-1 or GRE-2?
What is the instructor’s experience / background?
Why is the Nth Degree GRE class less expensive than Kaplan or Manhattan Prep?!
I have to put down a deposit? I’m concerned about pre-paying for a class I’ve never heard of
What is the Nth Degree approach / vision / philosophy?
- Lower hourly rate. $600 buys three weeks 1-on-1, four weeks for two students, or six weeks for 3+ students. In a 1- or 2-person course, you’ll then have the option to complete a six week program with a second payment (see Rates).
- Guaranteed time on my calendar. Course times are reserved for GRE students only.
- Coverage of all 3 sections of the exam, with emphasis on math.
Advantages of hourly study:
- Flexibility to meet a limited schedule or budget
- Strictly individual attention and feedback
- Can focus more on the Verbal section if you need to.
“How much preparation should I plan on?”
Improving GRE scores is harder than most students expect. You should treat GRE prep like a part-time job, say 10 – 15 hours / week. In an ideal world, I would prescribe six months in order to achieve your full potential. Realistically, though, this always runs up against outside constraints. You have to balance your GRE needs with the demands of your schedule and the limitations of your budget. Frankly, most students who call are on a tight budget and feel impatient to take the test soon. I designed my six-week course to meet the high demands of that market segment. I would consider it a realistic minimum introduction to your GRE program. If six weeks is all you can spare, then please do yourself a favor and clear your calendar of everything unnecessary during that time.
“How do I sign up for a GRE group class?”
- Sign up for the class at this calendar. (Go to the first date of the class)
- Pay any time before the due date with the PayPal button at the upper right of the website (or you may pay $550 immediately when enrolling).
Your seat must be booked on the appointment calendar, and we must receive your deposit before the first class meeting in order to offer you a seat.
“What if I have to be absent?”
Each day you are absent, I’ll email you makeup material, generally consisting of handouts, video lessons, and homework. Therefore, there are no refunds for absences.
Sorry, there is no make up for homework questions or essay feedback. You must be in class for those.
If you know you’ll have to be absent twice or more, I would not recommend the group class to you.
“Should I take GRE-1 or GRE-2?”
GRE-1: Intro. to the GRE
GRE-2: Mostly Advanced Math
Here is the GRE-2 class syllabus. This class is intended for students
- Who have already taken the Nth Degree GRE-1 class, or
- Whose entrance diagnostic scores are already high
It mostly provides a thorough review of math topics not covered in the introductory course. This class also briefly addresses the Verbal and Essay sections, with special attention to difficult problems and the “Alternative Explanation” essay type. (Think of this course as refining your way from a solid score to the very best you can do!)
Your instructor’s GRE Experience
That’s a great question; thanks for asking! In this course, you will focus on the substance of the exam, not just the procedure. I would advise you not to be too taken in by courses trying to convince you that you can ace the GRE (or any standardized exam) just with procedural tips / tricks / gaming the exam. (“Just plug in” , “Read the question stem first” etc. are NOT secret recipes for success). These exams are designed to reward students who
- Are well read
- Are highly literate in English and can read with 100% comprehension
- Have good recall of math facts, and
- Understand mathematics at the level of principles, not just processes.
The Nth Degree course takes the exam seriously by
- Examining the obstacles to reading comprehension, and how to work through them
- Fostering vocabulary retention and careful reading of information-dense material
- Teaching complex material as information that can be parsed into small simple parts
- Making sure you are rock solid with the most heavily tested / learnable math facts
- Understanding the difference between right and wrong answers
- Presenting elegant / insightful mathematical solutions as alternatives to brute force calculations