Dear Mentor:

Will I be punished by old GRE scores?

I have taken GRE twice. First I scored 1200, and then 1370. I am planning to take the GRE again and I think I will get 1450. I just need admission into Computer Science in USA. My question is: When my third score is reported, will the university take into consideration that I have already taken GRE twice and that am not fit for admission? I am planning for Oklahoma City University.

Rising GRE, India

Dear Rising GRE:

The guidelines for the GRE (Graduate Record Exam), a standardized entrance exam for graduate studies, state that your test scores from the past 5 years are reported to the academic institutions of your choice. Consequently, the schools will be aware of your performance on the GRE for all three attempts, if they were all in the past 5 years. All institutions will take into account your performance for all three times, but they will respond differently based on their unique admissions process. Typically, a substantial improvement in scores would be viewed positively, since it eliminates the prospect of achieving higher scores by chance. A nominal improvement, or up and down swings, through a series of attempts in the scores would likely be viewed much more cautiously.

FYI, the GRE score of 1450 out of 2400, even if you get it, is not a very good score for most colleges in the US. We are assuming you meant your score was the sum of all three parts of the GRE, each being worth 800 maximum.

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