Quantitative Topics & Concepts Tested on GRE

Written by Talha Omer

February 4, 2014

If any one of you has started studying from the official guide of the new revised GRE (2nd Edition) you will notice a certain trend – word problems abound. There are a lot of inequalities as well and a few probability and combinatorics questions. There is plenty of Statistics and but not a lot of geometry. Quantitative comparison questions are frequent as well along with many questions on the time consuming data interpretation.

In this post I have used the official guide to come up with an exhaustive list of topics and concepts tested on the GRE quantitative section. You will not see anything outside of these topics, neither would you see all of them at once. Just beware that these days probability, sequences and statistics are hot topics on the GRE, so emphasize on these a lot more than others.

A point that you must take a note of here is that the Math skills required to do well on the GRE quantitative reasoning section are of a very basic level. No advanced mathematics topics such as differentiation or integration are tested and all topics are within the reach of a tenth grade student. In general the quantitative reasoning section on the GRE assesses:

1. Basic Mathematical skills.
2. Understanding of elementary mathematical concepts.
3. Ability to reason quantitatively & to model and solve problems with quantitative methods.

The skills and concepts are tested in the following areas:


• Arithmetic Operations
• Number Lines
• Number Approximation & Estimation
• Prime Numbers & Factorization
• Factors and Multiples
• Remainders
• Odd & Even Integers
• Evenly Spaced Sets
• Exponents & roots
• Percentage & Ratios
• Direct & Inverse Proportionality
• Absolute Value & Modulus
• Fractions, Decimals & Digits
• Number sequences


• Linear & Quadratic Equations
• Simultaneous Equations
• Functions & Special Symbol Formulas
• Inequalities
• Inequalities with Absolute Values


• Parallel & perpendicular lines
• Circles
• Triangles, quadrilaterals and other polygons
• Congruent & similar figures
• Area, perimeter, volume
• Pythagorean theorem
• Angle measurement in degrees
• 3D geometry
• Coordinate Geometry
• Graphs of functions & Parabolas

Word problems

• Speed distance problems
• Work rate problems
• Age problems
• Mixture questions
• Venn diagrams
• Simple & compound interests

Data Interpretation

• Line graphs
• Bar graphs
• Histograms
• Circle graphs
• Box plots
• Scatter plots
• Frequency distributions


• Mean
• Median
• Mode
• Range
• Percentiles
• Standard deviation
• Interquartile range
• Quartiles and percentiles
• Normal Distribution


• Probabilities of compound events and independent events
• Random variables
• Probability distributions
• Counting methods, such as combinations and permutations

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