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Should you give GRE for Masters in Germany?

November 18, 2023

The GRE Dilemma: To Take or Not to Take?

In your quest to apply to various universities in Germany, you might find that a select few programs require GRE scores. In such cases, the decision is simple: if your target university program demands GRE scores, it's a no-brainer to prepare for and take the exam. However, for the majority of English-taught programs in Germany (around 90-95%), GRE scores are not mandatory.

Exceptions that Warrant GRE Consideration

While GRE scores might not be required for most German Master's programs, there are scenarios where taking the exam could be advantageous:

  1. Math-Intensive Programs and Background: If you're applying for a math-intensive program but your academic history lacks sufficient evidence of a strong math background, taking the GRE could help bridge this gap. For instance, if your math grades aren't stellar or you lack advanced math coursework, a strong GRE quant score could demonstrate your mathematical aptitude.
  2. Compensating for Low Grades: A high GRE score can act as a compensating factor if you have overall low grades in your undergraduate studies. Since the GRE is a standardized test, a strong performance showcases your academic abilities and dedication beyond your GPA.
  3. Mitigating the Impact of Low-Ranked Institutions: If your undergraduate institution is not highly ranked, a high GRE score can be a powerful tool to show your potential. It can demonstrate that you possess the academic skills needed for a rigorous Master's program.

Deciphering a Good GRE Score

When aiming for a competitive GRE score for German Master's programs, it's generally recommended to target a score above 320. This range is often used as a threshold by many universities. However, keep in mind that GRE scores are just one part of your application. Other elements like letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, and your academic history also play a crucial role in the admission process.

Should You Retake the GRE?

If your initial GRE score falls below the 310 mark, you might want to consider retaking the exam. Remember that while a higher score is generally better, retaking the test should be a strategic decision based on how much you can improve and the overall competitiveness of your application.

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