Wednesday, November 02, 2011

bad news

My GRE scores are now in; I just saw them when I logged into my online ETS/GRE account. Verdict: unsurprisingly, it appears I'll need to try yet again.

Here's a scrunched version of my scores from July and August:

In case you're having trouble reading the scores, they go like this:

July 2011
Verbal: 710 (167), 98th percentile
Quant: 710 (155), 69th percentile
AnWrit: 5.5, 96th percentile

August 2011
Verbal: 165, 96th percentile
Quant: 161, 86th percentile
AnWrit: 5.5, 96th percentile

How does this make me feel? Well, I'd say there's a mixture of pride, disappointment, and outright confusion. I couldn't help noticing that my original "72nd percentile" for the Quant section of the July test has now been demoted to a 69th percentile-- a recent development, I suppose, as ETS continues to juggle its figures to make the old test scores "match" the new ones. I also see that the 5.5 Analytical Writing score, which used to be a 94th percentile, has been bumped up to the 96th percentile. That's nice, although I would have loved a 6 this time around. I'm also happy to see that my math score seems to have vaulted from the 69th to the 86th percentile. At the same time, it sucks that my Verbal score has dropped from the 98th to the 96th percentile; I thought I'd done better than that. It also sucks that the Quant score didn't at least break the 90th percentile, which would have made me recruitable by Kaplan, at the very least, if not by MGRE.

The reassignment of the percentiles for my July test is disconcerting. It feels like a rewriting of history, especially since I have a piece of paper from ETS with a "72" on it. Not that that 72 is anything to be proud of, but it's still better than a 69.

So now it's a question of scrounging up the cash to take another test. At $160 a pop, this won't be easy, but it may be worth my while. For the moment, at least, employment at Manhattan GRE remains out of reach.



Charles said...

Sorry to hear the news. Apologies if you've already answered this question, but can you pick and choose scores, or do only your latest scores count?

Kevin Kim said...

I don't think anyone's asked that before. Nathan once asked whether I could teach at MGRE on the strength of just one of my scores (e.g., teach only Verbal-related courses if Verbal were my only 99th-percentile category); I never asked MGRE, but I'm operating on the assumption that that's not possible.

By extension, I doubt that one can pick and choose scores for employment: I imagine MGRE wants to see 99s in both categories, and on the same test.

Kevin Kim said...

But I suppose I should ask, eh?