Is this a good GRE score?

is this a good GRE score?
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Is this GRE score competitive?

  • Is my GRE score good enough for XYZ university?
  • Is this GRE score competitive?
  • What GRE score do I need to get in?

These are some of the most common questions I get from my GRE students. These are important questions that can mean the difference between getting into the grad school you want or going to your second or third choice grad school. Good GRE scores can also earn you money (more on that in a minute).

There are several things to keep in mind when answering the question, “Is my GRE score good enough?” Continue reading “Is this a good GRE score?”

© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

Use Stress to ace a test?

Photo by Doran Erickson on Unsplash

As a GRE prep teacher, I find about half my students suffer from test anxiety, often at debilitating levels. Test anxiety can take even the brightest test takers and stunt their effective IQ during the exam. But there’s a simple, research-proven way to take that negative stress and use it to your advantage so that you actually perform better on your GRE or any other test!Continue reading “Use Stress to ace a test?”

© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

Simple Ways to Prep for Your GRE While You’re In School

Image by Jan Vašek from Pixabay

With fall semester college classes back in swing many students are tempted to postpone their GRE prep. Whether it’s GRE quantitative, GRE verbal, or GRE analytical writing, there’s a better solution than postponing it; a very simple solution that will keep you from losing hard-won ground as you prepare for the GRE test.Continue reading “Simple Ways to Prep for Your GRE While You’re In School”

© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

Simple way to increase your recall and Understanding

Question Everything

I know what you’re thinking, “Should I really question everything?” You’re such a smart-aleck, but the answer is, “yes!” at least if you want to suck the knowledge-nuggets right out of whatever you’re studying and make yourself into the uber-scholar you always new you could be.

Asking deeper questions–and thinking carefully through how you might answer them–is a well-researched method of deepening comprehension and increasing recall. It also can signal your prof or teacher that you are an above-average thinker. But what constitutes a really good question?

Good Questions

Good questions are questions that require higher-level thinking, while low-level questions are the kind that a well-trained parrot could spit out. Low-level questions are those that simply require you to repeat facts–the kind of questions your grandmom’s Commodore 64 computer could answer. Questions such as…

Continue reading “Simple way to increase your recall and Understanding”© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

New GRE Practice tests

[Updated Thursday, November 28, 2019]

As I’ve mentioned in other places, the best practice you can get for the GRE comes from ETS, the company that makes the GRE. You can always take their free Powerprep Online tests. These are the same great tests I tell my students about in my GRE Prep Course.

Now they offer three additional GRE tests.

The free Powerprep Online consists of two, free practice GRE tests. Each has real GRE questions and works just like the actual test. The timing is the same AND the sections get more or less difficult, just like the real deal. You can also go back over the test after you’ve taken it to see which ones you missed.

The problem with the Powerprep Online is there are only two tests available. After that, you have to rely on some test prep company’s best effort at recreating a GRE. Those companies may make their practice GRE tests and then try it out on a few people that work for them. They don’t have the chance to try it on thousands of test takers the way ETS does with their real GRE tests. That means the fake GRE tests just aren’t going to be as good as the ones from ETS.

Finally, ETS has made three more real GRE tests available. They are calling these two tests Powerprep Plus Online.

Unfortunately, unlike the Powerprep Online, the Powerprep Plus Online isn’t free. The tests will set you back $39.95 each. Still worth it!

Have you found any other great GRE prep resources? Let us know in the comments!



© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

More for less–Getting the most From your mind

Most of us feel like we are pretty good at using our brains; I mean, we’ve been doing it our whole lives, right? But are you really getting the most out of your mind when it comes to memory, study, and creativity?

There are loads of little tweaks and changes you can make to your current routines that will give big brain benefits. Which of these are you not currently using to their full effect?

Continue reading “More for less–Getting the most From your mind”© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

Screw Up To Succeed

The Wrong Way to Fail

Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit there. -Will Rogers

Most of us think of a screw up, a failure, a crash-and-burn, as a bad thing. It can be.


It can also be a very good thing. If you fail in the right way.

How do you fail in the right way?

The path to lifelong learning– to truly effective, mind-blowing, earth-shaking learning–is paved with failing successfully and often. Fail in the right way to become a better student. Do you want to be a better learner by the end of this week? Experiment, and let your failures catapult you to success.

Here’s how.

Give yourself permission to screw up.

You can get it wrong some times. The important thing is damage control and analysis. Here’s what I mean.

You need to try things that push you out of your comfort zone. Try learning something in a totally new way…

  • Ditch the notes and go with a recorder.
  • Ditch the recorder and go with notes.
  • Try learning by doing.
  • Make a play.
  • Draw a picture.
  • Go to the prof’s office hours.
  • Skip class and learn it off the internet.
  • Study early.
  • Study late.
  • Memorize everything.
  • Memorize nothing.
  • Read all the assigned readings.
  • Read none of them.

Experiment with your learning. What works best for you?

It’s easy to engage in lifelong learning; witness the twenty-year grad student. But lifelong learning that continually improves and becomes more effective? That’s a little tougher. The only way to keep perfecting your lifelong learning skills is by experimentation.

Continue reading “Screw Up To Succeed”

© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

Single Best Way to Boost Your GRE Score

What is the single most effective way to increase your score on the GRE? If you only have three hours to prepare for your GRE tomorrow what should you do? How did one test taker boost her math score by almost ten points with less than six hours work?Continue reading “Single Best Way to Boost Your GRE Score”

© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

5 Simple Ways to Zombie Proof Yourself from the Walking Dead

in the event of zombie apocalypse, avoid stephen hawking

What better way to zombie-proof yourself than to shrink your brain? That’s right, you can easily make yourself too stupid to be a target for the walking dead with these five simple techniques.Continue reading “5 Simple Ways to Zombie Proof Yourself from the Walking Dead”© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

Most Powerful of All Study Tips

I recently received emails from two different readers who study at one of the best universities in the UK is Portsmouth as it’s in such a good location and has an brilliant rating, we have also found some excellent accommodation options for you if you are planning on studying there.
who have similar problems. . .

Too much academic work to do and not enough time to do it.

You need a strategy, my friend!

There is one super study-skill that saves me more time than any other.Continue reading “Most Powerful of All Study Tips”

© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

Simple Ways to Stop Student Stress

Stop Student Stress; Simple TipsIt can be hard to avoid student stress and stay healthy while keeping up with the quick pace of college. Many college students must take on self-maintenance tasks that, prior to college, a parent reminded them to complete. 

Does stress keep you from doing your best in college? Are your health and your grades suffering because of stress?Continue reading “Simple Ways to Stop Student Stress”

9 Tricks to Learn Everything 10 Times Faster [LifeHack]

Chloe Chong, an editor over at, posted this simple, powerful infographic on powerful learning tricks.

It nicely sums up many concepts I’ve hit on in my posts, such as teaching to learn, quizzing yourself, and studying in small bursts.

9 tricks to learn everything faster

Which of these works best for you? Let me know in the comments!

© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

GRE Prep; Do You REALLY Need It?

Do you really need GRE prepDo you really need to do a lot of prep for the GRE? Can’t you just read a GRE prep book yourself and study some on your own?

Yes. But. . .

. . . that’s not necessarily the smartest way to get the best score (or even a decent one). And a good score on the GRE can make it MUCH easier to get into the grad school you want.

Knowing the best way to prep can save you a ton of time (and money). Continue reading “GRE Prep; Do You REALLY Need It?”

© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

Can “Zimbabwe” Boost Your Memory?

how Zimbabwe improves memoryWhy “Zimbabwe?”

A psychologist named Von Restorff noticed that when he gave test subjects a random list of words. . .

cat, bench, art, canopy, Zimbabwe, fish, etc.

. . . they remembered best the words at the beginning and end of the list. No big surprise there. That’s the serial position effect I talk about in my book.

BUT: they also recalled unusual words, such as “Zimbabwe.”

Now it gets a little weird; subjects also showed better recall for the words near the uncommon word.

This effect is called—appropriately enough—the Von Restorff Effect.

Use this in your studies.

Do something novel, strange, fun, interesting, or just flat out weird during your study break. (You do take study breaks, right?)

When in doubt, go for sock puppets or corn fungus tacos.

Anything you do to make the break interesting and different from the study time can boost your memory of the studying on either side of the break.© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

5 Study Mistakes Students Make

Study mistakestags: study mistakes, ron swanson, bacon, homework help, study guides

When I was in college I made some very basic mistakes that made my life much harder: answering honestly when my girlfriend asked if a new dress made her look fat, co-signing on a lease with a guy who collected smurf dolls, while I should have use sources as capitol students accommodation to find the best place to live.

More to the point, I also made some study mistakes that made my life tougher than it needed to be. Many of my friends made the same study mistakes. Make sure these study mistakes don’t cost you time and energy.Continue reading “5 Study Mistakes Students Make”

© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.

Step-by-step recipe for meeting your academic goals

If you could just make yourself study… If you could just make yourself read the textbook… If you could just quit wasting so much time on FaceBook… If you could just make yourself get up in the morning…

Psychology research has unlocked the secret to willpower. Discover the step-by-step, simple method for achieving your goals, whether those goals are academic or physical. Click here to find out how.