Changes were introduced in GRE so as to make it more student-friendly
Two and three tier cities in Andhra Pradesh have seen a rise
in the number of students taking GRE (Graduate Record Examination) and TOEFL (Test
of English as a Foreign Language) tests in the past two years, indicating
a marked increase in the aspirants planning to go abroad for higher education. David
G Payne, vice-president and COO of Educational Testing Service (ETS) that conducts
the two tests said that these cities would be the next avenues of growth in the
country in terms of students bound for foreign universities. Vizag and Vijayawada
are among the non-metro cities that ETS would be concentrating on in the state.
ETS representatives said that they have already conducted a series of training programmes
in cities like Vizag. While in 2010, the focus was on Hyderabad, in 2011 the programme
was conducted only in Vizag. According to Payne, ETS is currently looking at educational
models that would suit the requirements of students from these cities.
The ETS representatives had come to the city as part of their India visit, 2011.
Hyderabad was one of the three cities the ETS officials visited this year. The focus
of the visit was to familiarise students with the new pattern of GRE introduced
in August this year and also to examine the changing trends in higher education
in the country.
Talking to TOI, Payne said that changes were introduced in GRE so as to make it
more student-friendly. The test has already introduced features like online calculation
among several such applications. Changes have also been introduced to make the test
an indicator of the rate of success the candidate would have if he/she takes admission
in an institution abroad. "The test now has questions related to the basics of what
you might learn, in the new institution after admission. So while looking at a student's
GRE score the examiners in the universities to which one has applied will be able
to predict how good or bad your basic skill sets are," said Payne.
The ETS representatives said they would advise students who take the test to look
at the test model online, before they join coaching institutes. "The students can
download the modules of the test for free from the ETS website. They should go for
preparatory classes only after they have done enough research about the test," said
Scott F Nelson, vice-president, Marketing and Public Affairs, ETS. The officials
were responding to queries about non-reliable coaching institutes that have come
up in the city since the past five years, due to an increase in the number of takers
for the test from Hyderabad.
According to the ETS representatives there has been an18 per cent increase in the
number of GRE examinees since over the past few years and India is one of the top
three countries other than US and China where the test is taken. There has also
been an increase in the number of institutions that are opting for GRE scores in
the US. While 11 per cent of the B-Schools in the US used GRE scores three years
ago, currently 25 per cent of them use these scores for admissions, ETS officials
Courtesy: Times of India