How to Memorise the GRE Vocabulary?

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Getting a high GRE score is mandatory for anyone looking to further their education in a school where it’s a requirement. Yet, the GRE tests can be a hard nut to crack. There are abundant services everywhere claiming to be of help but then, but they may not be options you can explore at the moment.


Passing the GRE requires broad memorization of common GRE words. Memorization within a short time is hard and words can easily be forgotten. This article will walk you through some of the best ways to memorize GRE vocabulary without forgetting and help you in your GRE preparation. Before starting this blog, I would like to tell you that if you are looking for coaching for your GRE Preparation, visit

Tips for memorizing the GRE Vocabulary


1. Read Extensively


Reading is the simplest way to learn new words. But the materials you spend time reading must be carefully selected. Find publications that seldomly use GRE words in their content and consume as many works as possible.


As you read, keep a little notebook by your side so you can jot down words you are not familiar with. Do this every day and try to get at least 20 new words per day. At the end of the daily reading session, check the meanings of the words and write them down. Rehearse the words and their meanings as many times as possible.


2. Make the Dictionary a Companion


Just like you cannot go a day without food and water, cultivate the habit of flipping through the pages of a dictionary as a routine. It is impossible to know all of the words but you will learn more words as you skim through.


Keep your eyes out for words that you find strange or similar to what you already know. Read the meanings of these words and find synonyms for them. Make it a habit and do these for at least 15 minutes daily. This way of GRE preparation will help you increase the number of words at your disposal. 

3. Use New Words in Speech

This may sound funny but it is a tip that has worked for many. Do not worry about what people will think of you if you start doing this. The more people ask you about these words, the higher the chances of having them stick to your memory.


For every new word you learn, make sure you use it in one or more conversations. Spread the total words learned across different conversations with different people. The meanings of these words will make more sense when you use them.


4. Estimate Your Vocabulary


This is something that must be done every day. At every point in your memorization journey, you need to know the total number of words that you have learned. Understand how well you can use these words and how often you say them while talking.


This would not only guide you on how much you still need to cover but will also motivate you to keep going. You can easily keep a record of your vocabulary with the aid of a vocabulary notebook or a vocabulary learning app/software. Also, as you learn new words, create time to revise the previously learned words as when not used regularly can be forgotten.

5. Take GRE Practice Tests


The GRE practice tests are mocks of real tests and is one of the best GRE preparation technique. It aims to give you a feel of what the examination is like. It prepares your mind and helps you make arrangements to beat the set time and uncover the tricks used in the word test.


Doing this while memorizing will help you gauge how well you are doing and how far you have gone. Take the GRE practice tests at regular intervals like weekly or biweekly. You can also schedule your learning around this. Remember to always set a new target high score. 


6. Use of Imagery


Mental pictures are like tattoos. They last longer and have been employed in teaching and memorization practices. How do you learn words with imagery? Easy. For every new word, ponder on its meaning and allow your brain to create a mental picture with it.


Focus your brain’s attention on the word’s spelling and try to link some letters in the word to its meaning or a word you are familiar with. Create at least two mental pictures for each word and when revising, use the imagery created to recollect the words and their meanings.


7. Study the Origin of Words


Many words have unique origins and knowing these origins makes the memorization process easier. Studying the origin of a word is like studying its history. This step creates a mental image of these words already so whenever you stumble upon them, these images and their meanings come to the fore of your mind.


While creating mental pictures and studying the origin of words, pay attention to the letters and the pattern of combination. Creatively look at how these combinations can be linked to their meanings or a special event in your life. The kind of things these words are linked to determines how hard or easy to remember it will be.


8. Create Time to Learn


Discipline is hard but its rewards are boundless. Regardless of how powerful a tip is, if you are not consistent, you would not achieve the kind of results you desire. You must make time daily to learn new words, revise old ones and practice them in speech.


This consistent practice is what makes it stick. Find the time that seems like a sweet spot. It could be the early hours of mornings or the late hours of afternoons and evenings. Assess your daily routine well to find a time that would be best for learning. 


9. Know What Part of Speech a Word Falls Under


GRE test questions pull the heaviest tricks hence learning new words without paying attention to how and where they are used or what they can be used for is fruitless. When you do this, you may end up mixing up its meanings or misinterpreting the word and its origin.


Dissect any new word you learn and understand what part of speech it falls into. If it’s a noun, do not mistake using it as a verb in a conversation as this complicates the whole learning process. The first step to achieving this is learning about the seven parts of speech with easy-to-relate examples.


10. Prioritize High-Frequency Words


As you go through GRE practice test questions, you will discover some words are in a popularity contest with others. Identify all of these words that occur frequently and write them out. When you start learning, begin with these words and spend time understanding them, their origins, and the part of speech that they belong to.


The likelihood of coming across these words in the real test is quite high. It would be annoying to know these words and still lose precious marks. Most people who took the test and got very high scores used this trick.


11. Linking New Words to Words You Know


In this memorization style, you do not have to find or create a mental picture with the meanings of new words. You may not even have to know their meanings. What you will do is find as many synonyms as possible until you find a synonym that you are already used to.


So, all you will do is link the new word to the old one. Perhaps they may have similar sounds, syllables, letter counts, or similar vowels. Look out for similarities beyond meaning and register these similarities in your brain by reciting them or using them interchangeably in conversations.


12. Vocabulary software


There is a myriad of vocabulary software and word compilations based on high-frequency words that you can use to achieve your learning goal. Although, some of them are complex, lengthy, and daunting.


Look for the easiest application you can use or a short word compilation list. Starting with the smaller list will ensure you don’t give up halfway through. If you can complete the small lists, you will have the mental stamina to undertake and complete way lengthier ones.




High GRE test scores are confidence-boosting but they do not come easy. GRE preparation requires lots of effort, determination, and a little resilience to learn the words needed. In the long run, this helps improve your command of the English language. Follow the tips given above and abide by the ones that you find comfortable. Be focused and stick to your learning plan. You will crush your set test score without having to sweat too hard.

Our hope is that this article gave you an overview of GRE Preparation. If want to join the GRE coaching or you do have any further queries, do reach out to our experts and get your study abroad journey started today.