A ‘good’ score can be described as a safe score for your target program. The simplest way to find this out is to research your target schools and aim above their average score. Any score above the average is usually safe; however, no score guarantees you an admission- not even 340. A strong well rounded profile, with compelling SOPs, solid LORs, quality research/ work experience are any applicant’s strongest guarantee.
Dependent on Program and University
Different programs have different requirements. Consider this, Princeton University Ranks No. 1 for Sociology and their average Quant score for admission Ranges from 145-149 according to an estimate made at Magoosh’s website (the Princeton Website doesn’t officially share any scores), the same score for a Math program in a top tier university will almost certainly kill any chances of admission. Similarly, different universities have different requirements too. As a rule of thumb, the higher the ranking, the more competitive the university and the higher the GRE score required.
Quant VS Verbal Score
In general, if you are a non-native applying in Engineering, universities are willing to consider your application even if the Verbal score isn’t great. For the Quant part, the higher you can score, the better it is. For top tier programs, try scoring 90th percentile (165+) or higher. For non-technical programs, such as social sciences, focus more on your verbal scores. Always research your target university and aim for a score greater than the average score.
If you come from a university which is less recognized, then the admission committee is less likely to have any real idea of how rigorous your university academics were or of what your GPA really means. In that case, your GPA might be seen in the light of your GRE score and your Letter of Recommendations. If you have a great GPA, but a really low GRE- it leaves a negative impression. On the other hand, if you claim that your slightly low GPA was because your grades were marked very strictly and that you still have a great percentile, a great GRE and a strong LOR will endorse your words and speak for your capability.
In short, keep in mind, a great GRE does not guarantee admission in a university, your entire application does. Always research your target universities and if there is no guideline available on the GRE scores, drop them an email.
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