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How to memorize GRE vocabulary?

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How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 09 Jun 2014, 14:13
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Memorizing Words


If you read this week’s posts, you know how to be a full scale word addict. You also have the vocabulary books that provide you with the best prep. Now, we need to talk about the process of getting words to stick in your head.
Below is a tested and proven formula for helping words stick.

Come up with Clever Associations


Another way of saying this: use mnemonics. A mnemonic is a creative way of remembering a word.
Let’s take the words gregarious and amiable. Gregarious means sociable. Say I have a friend named Greg, and, indeed, he is outgoing. Now, I have a way of remembering this word. As luck would have it, I also have a friend named Amy who, believe it or not, is friendly. So now, when I see amiable I think Amy-able and for gregarious I think Greg-arious.
Wait a second, you may be thinking. I don’t know anybody who has those names. That’s the whole point of a mnemonic – it needs to make sense only to you.
Granted, the words above didn’t have very interesting mnemonics. The cheesier a mnemonic, the more likely you are to remember it. And the mnemonics that make the most sense to you are usually the ones that you come up with your own.
So, give it a try with the following words:
Esoteric – known only to those with specialized knowledge
Dilatory – slow; delaying
Polemic – a written or verbal attack against someone

Usage of Words


Let’s say you don’t know the definitions of any of the words above. So, you look them up in a dictionary. Being the good word addict you are, you write down the definitions, as well as an example sentence on a flashcard.
However, tomorrow your friend asks you what you learned on GRE preparation. You tell them that you learned how to use mnemonics for three words. You remember the words, but you can’t remember the definitions. Now, say that you decided after reading my posts to read an article from The New Yorker. While reading the article you think to yourself, “Hey this is some pretty….oh, oh…what’s that word…esoteric stuff”.
Now, what’s happened? Well, you’ve recalled a word and used it in a relevant context. Calling forth a word in this fashion will embed it deeper into your memory. That way, when it comes time for the test, you will spend very little brainpower processing the word.
So, whether you are walking down the street, or even watching a television show, see if you can’t apply the words you learnt that day (or even the previous days). If you think that GRE prep ends as soon as you put down your vocabulary books, then you will have a tougher time learning words. Use words (even if discreetly to yourself) whenever you can. Your verbal score will thank you.

Do not Overload yourself


Learning hundreds of words while only having a tenuous grasp of them is not very productive. There is basically a word for this method: cramming. In old GRE this method would have been effective , but not in the new one.Instead, learn words, but at a rate where they are not falling out of your head. For some, this rate is five words a day. For others, it’s twenty-five. My experience is that students fare best when they start with a few words per day, but then increase the number. Oftentimes, your brain simply needs to adapt to something it is not used to doing, i.e. learning vocabulary.

Read to be Surprised


Imagine that you pick up the copy of the Economist (we’ll give The New Yorker a rest for now). In there, you see the word dilatory. Look familiar? Well, your brain should have a sudden jolt of recognition: we just saw the word in the mnemonics exercise above. Now that you’ve encountered a word you learnt as part of your word list, but weren’t necessarily expecting to see in The Economist, your brain is suddenly more likely to retain it.
As you continue to learn words, and as you continue to read, you will have more of these epiphanic moments. Sometimes, you won’t remember the word immediately. But, you can always look the word up to reinforce the definition.

Conclusions


Use words and use them often
Find creative and cheesy ways to remember words
Read, read, and read some more
:read :read :read
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 01 Aug 2015, 13:49
Here are some techniques that would help you memorize GRE wordlists:

#1 Practice again and again
#2 Test yourself periodically
#3 Identify words that you find difficult and revise them more often
#4 Use a tool to track your progress over time
#5 Prioritize and start with most common words first.

I am the founder of crackoo and we have incorporated all the above techniques in our product.
You can try crackoo GRE wordlist at crackoo dot com
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 12 Aug 2015, 23:43
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There are some interesting ways which I have used to prepare for vocab in a period of 2-3 weeks before GRE :

- Using Pictures to Memorize faster - You can simply use google image search and store some image which you find fit for that meaning. Also you use tools like GRE PIXNARY available online( Web and Android Application).
- Using Videos - You can search on Youtube for interesting wordlist. Picture stories
- Using Games - You can use some word games or quizzes based on GRE to make it more Fun to learn.

Advantage of these techniques :
:idea: You spend more time on these as they are interesting
:idea: Revising speed will be tremendous
:idea: memory will retain all these visual elements for Longer period of Time.
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 25 Apr 2016, 10:59
I like to study vocab according to definition. It helps if you organize them while studying! :)

That way, you aren't memorizing so many words.
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 25 Apr 2016, 11:05
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If I wasn't clear before--when studying there are SO many words that mean the same thing. For example, when there are at least 10 GRE words that mean "Beautiful" more or less. I would put them all in a big group. Then, your brain will remember words in a category.
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 13 May 2016, 05:35
This is really useful..Thank You. My Cousin is taking GRE this year and How many days she should spend to Prepare for GRE. Can I ask her to take Online Gre Preparation ?
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 13 May 2016, 07:07
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Hello Saycharming,
The answer to this question varies from person to person. In average, students take 3 months preparation for GRE. Depending on previous experience with aptitude exams it may take less. The best way is to try the ETS powerprep free test and get an idea where do you stand with respect to your target score. If the difference is too big I will say go for a good online test prep like Magoosh or others.
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 20 May 2016, 17:42
I was bad with my Vocabulary, flash cards helped me a lot. Magoosh and Manhattan GRE are good sources of flash cards.
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 26 May 2016, 00:44
To learn something new (activity, word etc.), learn by making associations. To learn new words, learn them by associating with a few words you already know; and associating with a few sentences.

Etymological associations are the best. Learn the root of these words, learn how they were derived. As a bonus, etymological learning opens your horizons to the whole family of new words derived from the same root.

Another association is learning with the synonyms. As you come across the new words, learn the synonyms for these words. There's a very fair chance you might know one or more of them.

Most importantly, learn by usage. Every new word you learn, understand how it's various forms are used in a sentence. This makes your learning much more concrete.

It is now a well established fact that you cannot learn a word by looking at it once, unless you are gifted with anesthetic memory. For the common people like us, we need to read them once, twice, thrice,and many more times. A general thumb rule is that you have to get exposed to the word 4-7 times (tend to the higher side for the more complex words), distributed over 15 days. That drills the word into your sub-conscious mind. Make it a habit to recall these new words regularly. As you read any website or newspaper, try replacing thewords with the new set of words you've learnt.
Be thorough with Barron's and Kalpan's materials.Take Magoosh test papers.After all this,use Vocabsmith app for GRE when 2-3 months is left.It is very usefull to memorise and revise all the words you have learnt.
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 27 May 2016, 10:18
In case you find it difficult to come up with your own mnemonic, you can use others creativity to your advantage through mnemonicdictionary<dot>com
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary? [#permalink] New post 27 May 2016, 16:40
Expert's post
Check out this GRE Vocabulary book that I co-wrote:

GRE Vocab Capacity - Over 1,200 Powerful Memory Tricks and Mnemonics

It's not free, but it's less than 1 cent/word.
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Re: How to memorize GRE vocabulary?   [#permalink] 27 May 2016, 16:40
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