GRE Organization, Scoring and Test Dates, GRE Subject Tests

All subject tests are administered in paper-and-pencil format and consist exclusively of multiple-choice questions that are designed to assess knowledge of the area of the subject that are included in the typical undergraduate curriculum.

On subject tests, you'll earn one point for each multiple-choice that you answer correctly but lose one=quarter point for each incorrectly question. Unanswered questions are not counted in scoring. Your raw score is the number of correctly answered questions minus one-quarter of the incorrectly answered questions. This raw score is then converted into scaled score, which can range from 200 to 900. The range varies from test to test.

Some subject tests also contain subtests, which provide more specific information about your strengths and weaknesses. Subtest scores, which range from 20 to 99, are reported along with the overall score. Subject tests are offered three times a year: in November, December, and April.

Subjects : Currently, eight Subject tests are offered. A list of them follows, along with brief description of each.

Biochemistry, Cell, and Molecular Biology

This test consists of 180 questions and is divided among three sub score areas: biochemistry, cell biology, and molecular biology and genetics.

Biology : This test consists of about 200 questions divided among three sub score areas: cellular and molecular biology, organismal biology, and ecology and evolution

Chemistry : This test consists of about 136 questions. There are no sub scores, and he questions cover the following topics: analytical chemistry, inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry and physical chemistry.

Computer science : This test consists of approximately 70 questions. There are no sub scores, and the questions cover the following topics:

Software systems and methodology, computer organization and architecture, theory and mathematical background, and other, more advanced topics such as numerical analysis, graphics and artificial intelligence.

Literature in English : This test consists of 230 questions on literature in the English language. There are two basic types of questions: factual question that test the student's knowledge of writers typically covered in the undergraduate curriculum, and interpretive questions that test the students ability to read various types of literature critically.

Mathematics : This test consists of 66 questions on the content of various undergraduate courses in mathematics. Most of the test assesses the students knowledge of calculus , abstract algebra , linear algebra, and real analysis. About a quarter of the test, however, requires knowledge in other areas of math.

Physics : This test consists of 100 questions covering mostly materials covered in the first 3 years of undergraduate physics. Topics include classical mechanics, electromagnetism, atomic physics, optics and wave phenomena, quantum mechanism, thermodynamics and statistical mechanism, special relativity, and laboratory methods. About 9 percent of the test covers
advanced topics, such as nuclear and particle physics, condensed matter physics, and astrophysics.

Psychology : This test consists of 210 questions mostly from undergraduate curriculum. The questions fall in three categories. The experimental or natural science-oriented category included questions in learning, cognitive psychology, sensation and perception, ethologic and comparative psychology, and physiological psychology. The social or social science-oriented category includes questions in abnormal psychology, developmental psychology, social psychology, and personality.

Together these make up about 85 percent of the test, and each of the two categories provide its own sub scores. The other 15 percent or so fall under the general category, which includes the history of psychology, tests andmeasurements, research design and statistics, applied psychology.