GRE Subject Tests

Everything You Need to Know about GRE Subject Tests

GRE or “Graduate Record Examination” provides you the opportunity to enter graduate and business schools in the English-speaking countries, such as the United States. The subject tests are intended for students who want to show that they are serious about their studies and are determined to pursue their education in a certain subject. It is a fact that the scores in the subject test may not be required for admission to every study program. Not everyone requires taking one of these tests, however, you can take one of the subject tests along with the revised General test to show your knowledge and skill level in a specific subject which might be the major subject of the graduate/business course you want to get into. The subject tests are conducted three times a year in the months of April, October and November as paper-based tests in test centers throughout the world.

Different Types of GRE Subject Tests

The subject test in GRE is available for 8 subjects: English Literature, Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Computer Science, Biology, Biochemistry, Cell & Molecular Biology and Psychology.

Subject Test for English Literature

You can expect about 230 questions related to poetry, novel, drama, essay, short story, literary theory, biography, criticism, and the history of English. The subject test for English Literature comprises of two major categories of questions – the factual questions and the critical questions. In this test, you will be asked different types of questions based on English Literature and its various aspects.

Test for Physics

The subject test for Physics includes 100 five-choice questions that are based on experimental data, graphs, diagrams, and physical situation descriptions on different topics areas related to the subject. You have to be accustomed with specific mathematical applications in physics, in order to take this subject test successfully.

Subject Test for Chemistry

The test for Chemistry includes about 130 multiple-choice questions on inorganic, organic, physical and analytical Chemistry. This test may include questions that display interrelationships among two or more fields of the subject.


The test for Mathematics comprises about 66 multiple-choice questions drawn from the different topic areas of the subject. You must be aware of the fundamentals and other related concepts concerning various topic areas of the subject in order to perform well in this test.

Subject Test for Computer Science

The test for Computer Science includes approximately 70 multiple-choice questions that can appear from different topic areas of the subject. The questions of this test can be based on graphs, diagrams, and program sections.

Test for Biology

The test for Biology comprises approximately 200 five-choice questions that are asked from the fields of cellular & molecular biology, ecology & evolution, and organismal biology. This test includes questions based on experimental results, diagrams, and laboratory & field situation descriptions.

Biochemistry, Cell & Molecular Biology

This test includes about 175 multiple-choice questions related to molecular biology, genetics, biochemistry and cell biology. You can expect questions based on laboratory situations, experimental results and diagrams related to these major areas.

For Psychology

The test for Psychology includes approximately 205 multiple-choice questions that can be asked from experimental, social or general psychology topics. You can expect different types of questions in this test.

Advantages of Subject Tests

  • The subject tests can help you distinguish yourself from other applicants even if the graduate or business schools may not require the subject test score.
  • The test in subjects helps in complementing your undergraduate records and other qualifications used for applying to a graduate study course

To know more details of the subject tests in GRE, you can refer to the official website of the ETS (