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All the Best GRE Prep Courses of 2021

all the best gre prep courses of 2020

Updated September 13, 2020

Choosing the right Graduate Record Examination (GRE) prep course is a very important decision, one that will help you score higher on the GRE and could get you into the graduate school of your dreams.

You’ll be spending many hours studying, so it’s crucial to find the study materials that best fit your learning style and background.

So here’s the good news—we’ve personally researched and reviewed every major GRE prep course on the market to make things easier for you! The comparison chart below will help you figure out which one suits your budget, learning style, and scheduling needs.

Please note that several of the links included below are affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, we may earn a referral commission if you use one of the courses below. Only use the links if you have been helped by our review!


GRE Prep Course Reviews & Exclusive Discounts

 

GRE Prep
Courses
Magoosh gre prep course review Achievable GRE review target test prep GRE The Princeton Review Discounts Kaplan GRE PrepScholar GRE Prep Course Review manhattan prep gre
RANKINGS #1 #2 #3 #4 #5 #6 #7
COMPANY Magoosh GRE Achievable GRE Target Test Prep Princeton Review Kaplan PrepScholar Manhattan Prep
STARTING PRICE $894 $149
Get Discount
$299 $149
Get Discount
$99/month $499
Get Discount
$699 $629
Get Discount
$398 $345 $499 $249
PRACTICE QUESTIONS 1,200+ 9,999+ 3,000+ 2,500+ 5,000+ 2,000+ 1,000+
PRACTICE EXAMS 3 10 N/A 8 7 2 6
GUARANTEE +5 total score guarantee, 7 Day Money-Back Guarantee +7 total score guarantee, 7 Day Money-Back Guarantee Quant Score Improvement Guarantee Higher Score Guarantee Higher Score Guarantee +7 total score guarantee None
FORMAT Self-Paced Online Self-Paced Online Self-Paced Online Self-Paced Online, In-person, & Live Online Self-Paced Online, In-person, & Live Online Self-Paced Online Self-Paced Online, In-person, & Live Online
COURSE BOOKS Online Only Online Only Online Only Online Only 3 Workbooks + Pocket Reference Online Only Online Only
VIDEO INSTRUCTION
COURSE DEMO
STUDY PLAN
PROGRESS TRACKING
FLASHCARDS
MOBILE APP
ESSAY GRADING * with Premium Tutoring
STUDENT SUPPORT Chat Support, Email Support & Forum Chat, Email, Phone & Forum Support Email & Live Chat Support Email & Phone Support Instructor Email Support Email Support Email Support & Forum
ONLINE ACCESS 6 Months 1 Year 6 Months 4 months 6 Months 1 Year 6 Months
MORE DETAILS Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review
GET STARTED Start Now Start Now Start Now Start Now Start Now Start Now Start Now

Quick Links to GRE Prep Courses and Study Materials


GRE Prep Course Rankings

Magoosh GRE (Rank: #1)

Magoosh gre prep course review

OVERALL RATING:

Low Price: The Magoosh GRE program is unmatched when it comes to providing quality study material at a discounted price. For just $149 (using this Coupon Code), students have 6 months of access to more than 200 video lessons, 1,200 practice questions, and up to 3 practice exams. With competitors charging hundreds of dollars more, this course is definitely a bargain!
Intuitive Interface: Magoosh GRE has the most user-friendly online platform on our list. From their dashboard, students can view progress charts and recommended lessons based on completed practice questions, and gain quick access to key course features. They’ll also access the bulk of their course material here, including engaging video lessons and customizable practice quizzes. This dashboard is just one part of a stellar overall interface that makes Magoosh accessible to just about anyone with an internet connection.
Customer Support:Magoosh has a great reputation when it comes to their direct interactions with students. Whenever students are logged in, they’ll see a built in tab that makes it easy to submit questions to the Magoosh team immediately, rather than having to stop what you’re doing and go to a different part of the site to send an email or a message.
Quality Instruction: Each practice problem Magoosh provides is accompanied by both written and video explanations, making GRE concepts accessible and engaging to learners of all types.

Bottom Line: Magoosh has quality material, great web and mobile optimization, a 5-point score improvement guarantee, and quality customer service. These features come at an incredibly low price, easily making Magoosh the best GRE course in terms of overall value.

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Achievable GRE (Rank: #2)

achievable gre prep course

OVERALL RATING:

Endless Questions: Achievable is the clear leader when it comes to their amount of quizzes and practice questions. Rather than having a fixed-size question bank, they generate an endless supply of practice quantitative quizzes from the 120+ question templates they’ve identified on the exam along with step-by-step walkthroughs for each problem.
Advanced Personalization: Achievable uses adaptive learning techniques to create and update a personalized model of your memory, individually tracking your retention and mastery of each GRE learning objective. Their learning engine monitors your study progress and continually reprioritizes your quiz questions to ensure you’re focusing on the topics that matter most for you, improving study effectiveness while reducing overall study time.
Modern Platform: Whether you’re studying on the web or a smartphone, Achievable’s user interface is clean and responsive. Their progress charts highlight your journey through the course content and your current strength in each section.
Vocabulary Building: Instead of focusing on individual word definitions, Achievable takes a unique approach to vocabulary by grouping their 1,500+ vocab words into clusters with similar meanings. You’ll be quizzed by distinguishing different sets of words, similar to how you’ll be tested on the GRE itself. This builds up your vocab base in a fraction of the time you’d spend with other studying methods.
No Video Lessons: Achievable’s instructional content doesn’t currently include video lessons. Their content instead comes through their online textbook, so you’ll be doing a lot of reading. However, their text material is far from what you’d find in your ordinary textbook. Achievable’s online lessons are easy to read, include references to external sources, and break down sample questions into straightforward step-by-step guides.

Bottom Line: Achievable’s quiz-focused approach is perfect for those who learn by doing. Their modern platform makes studying easier and more enjoyable, using adaptive learning to get you higher scores in less time. If you’re ok without video lessons, Achievable delivers a strong, comprehensive GRE course.

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Target Test Prep GRE (Rank: #3)

target test prep gre review

OVERALL RATING:

30+ Hours of HD Video by Expert Instructors: You will watch and learn from the masters when you sign up for this course. More than 800 video solutions cover all you ever wanted to know about the mathematical strategies you’ll need to crush the quantitative section of the GRE. You can check out a selection of free videos and webinars on their website.
Best For GRE Quant: Target Test Prep’s GRE course is focused on providing practice for the quant section. By only focusing on one aspect of the exam, they can provide students with a hyper-specific test prep experience if you know that your GRE verbal skills are already where they need to be. With their course, you’ll be getting the best GRE quant instruction available today!
Live Tutoring Options: If you need additional live help while studying, you can connect with a personal tutor via Skype or WebEx. Pay for an hour or two individually, or choose a bundled option if you think you could use 10-20 hours of additional personalized tutoring.
Money-back Guarantee and $1 Trial:Target Test Prep offers both a limited 5-day trial and your money back if you are not satisfied with the course, as well as a risk-free $1 trial that can really help you get a feel for the course. Plus, if your GRE quant score doesn’t increase after you finish your Target Test Prep course, you can apply for a full refund.

Not Comprehensive (YET!):Target Test Prep is a great option if you’re only looking for great GRE math prep, but they don’t currently offer an equivalent review course for the verbal sections of the GRE. They do offer private tutoring for the GRE, though, which can provide verbal section review at a steeper price. 

Bottom Line: Target Test Prep’s GRE review is best for those who need help specifically with the quantitative section of the exam, thanks to their guarantees and personalized study plans. Their live tutoring options also make it easy to get individual instruction, something that won’t be as accessible or affordable with other courses.

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Princeton Review GRE (Rank: #4)The Princeton Review Discounts

OVERALL RATING:

Years of Experience: This is one of the most established companies in the test prep business—since 1981, The Princeton Review has helped students get into the schools of their dreams. Their experience has taught them a lot about how to ensure academic success, and they implement professionalism and expertise into everything they provide for their students.
Practice Tests: The Princeton Review provides 8 full-length computer-adaptive practice tests, giving students more simulated practice than they’ll find with any of the other self-paced GRE prep courses. After each test, students receive feedback and a 1-on-1 review of the test with their instructor to identify which sections of the GRE they should focus on studying.
Personalized Essay Feedback:The GRE’s AWA section is one of the most challenging for plenty of students, but The Princeton Review offers personalized feedback on your practice essays to help you make that section one of your greatest strengths. You can submit your essays through their LiveGrader tool, and a GRE expert will then score your essay and provide you with constructive feedback for how to improve.
Course Guarantees: The Princeton Review’s course guarantees are some of the best around. If you don’t feel ready to take the test at the end of a course, aren’t satisfied with your result, or didn’t improve your score when compared to a previous test, you can repeat your course or even ask for a full refund.
No Quiz Bank: Several competitors have question banks that allow you to create quizzes that focus on specific areas by filtering questions. The Princeton Review has 3,500 practice questions and numerous full-length exams (including one free practice test), which do help you identify areas of weakness, but there is no question bank for quizzes to test yourself with between full-length practice exams.

Bottom Line: The Princeton Review provides top-notch course guarantees and feedback for your practice AWA essays. Although they are the most expensive of our top 3 prep courses, their course is one of the most comprehensive on our list, and is a well-rounded option for any student.

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Kaplan GRE (Rank: #5)

kaplan gre prep course

OVERALL RATING:

Higher Score Guarantee: Kaplan is confident in their products and will give students an opportunity to retake the course or get a refund if their score does not improve. Make sure you are aware of the conditions of the guarantee, one of which is establishing a baseline GRE score before beginning the course.
Practice Material: Kaplan offers a lot of practice material, which can help you better recognize GRE question types and improve your test taking ability. Their quiz bank of more than 5,000 GRE practice questions allows you to take customized quizzes and filter which GRE areas you want to focus and improve on. 7 full-length practice exams give you ample opportunity to practice your strategies and prepare yourself for the exam.
Flashcard App: The course comes with a flashcard app (for both iOS and Android devices), which can be great for studying on the go. You will have access to 500 flashcards that include vocabulary words, synonyms, definitions, and sample sentences. Quiz yourself, track your own progress, and see performance statistics right from your smartphone.
Official Test Day Experience: Unique to Kaplan is the ability to take a practice GRE test in an actual Prometric testing facility. This can truly give you the edge you need to pass by giving you the familiarity and confidence you need to succeed.
More Expensive: When comparing starting prices of all the online GRE test prep courses on our list, Kaplan’s has the highest price tag. For hundreds less, you can get similar self-paced online courses from other top-notch companies.

Bottom Line: Kaplan provides the most comprehensive course offering on the market thanks to features like their large question bank, but this comes at a higher price point than comparable courses from other high-quality providers.

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PrepScholar (Rank: #6)

PrepScholar GRE Prep Course Review

OVERALL RATING:

Year-Long Access: PrepScholar has the longest access period of any top GRE prep course online, giving you full GRE preparation for an entire year. Their unlimited package, their most expensive, comes with lifetime access to their course.
Most Affordable: At the time of writing, PrepScholar is offering their most popular GRE prep course, which includes thousands of practice questions, 2 practice tests, video lessons and a year of access, for only $38!
+7 Point Improvement Guarantee: PrepScholar offers the best score improvement guarantee available, promising that students will score at least 7 points higher after taking their GRE course than they did on a previous test—or their money back.
High-Score Instructors: The instructors at PrepScholar have each scored in the 99th percentile on the GRE, meaning that they are the top 1% of test-takers, the best of the best.
Fewer Practice Tests: The practice tests that PrepScholar uses for its GRE courses—called the PowerPrep assessments—are high quality computer-adaptive tests that simulate the GRE. Still, you can only take 2 of them through PrepScholar, while other courses can give you a lot more test practice if you need it.

Bottom Line: PrepScholar offers students flexible access to GRE preparation materials at an affordable price point. They lack a mobile app and have only 2 practice tests, but their quality instruction and overall value make them a really well-rounded option for any GRE test-taker.

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Manhattan Prep GRE (Rank: #7)

manhattan prep logo

OVERALL RATING:

Comprehensive Course: Manhattan Prep’s course gives students a number of in-depth materials to study for each area of the exam. Access to more than 27 hours of video lessons, strategy guide books for each area of the exam, the Official Guide to the GRE book, and 6 practice exams make this a well-rounded course with an impressive amount of practice material.
Downloadable Video Lessons: Manhattan Prep gives students the ability to study virtually anywhere. Their on-demand video lectures can be streamed live or downloaded to your computer or iPad so that you can study on the go, even if you are in an area without internet access. The high definition videos are easy to follow and taught by expert instructors.
Quality Practice Tests: In addition to in-depth lessons and study material, Manhattan provides 6 quality practice tests. They are known for practice questions that are very close to those featured on the actual GRE exam, and some students report that the practice tests are more challenging than the actual test. Each practice test includes a detailed score report and breaks down your performance on areas of the exam.
Qualified Instructors:Manhattan Prep is meticulous in selecting their instructors and they are knowledgable in all areas of the GRE.
Refund Policy:Manhattan Prep clearly states on their website that all payments are nonrefundable and the company does not provide refunds to students for any reason.

Bottom Line: Manhattan Prep provides a comprehensive course that covers all the bases for you to score high. We don’t find it as efficient of a process as the Princeton Review or Kaplan, but if you want a large amount of practice problems, Manhattan Prep is a great option. Their materials are difficult, ensuring you’ll be prepared adequately for the GRE.

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examPAL GRE (Rank: #8)

ExamPAL GRE prep course overview

PAL Approach: examPAL believes that students answering GRE questions use one of these 3 main methods: Precise (able to answer outright without considering answer choices); Alternative (using process of elimination by plugging in the answer choices); or Logical (able to use outside information to assess a statement). Each student is often inclined toward a certain approach, and the examPAL system identifies your preferences and tailors lessons accordingly.
Flexible and Affordable: examPAL offers 6-week, 6-month, and 1-year plans that range from $189, $299, and $599, respectively. No matter how much time you have to devote to studying, examPAL has a plan that fits your schedule at a price that won’t break the bank.
Admissions Consultancy: Their 6-month and 1-year plans include a rare bonus feature: access to a 1-on-1 consultancy session with a professional graduate school admissions counselor. Getting into your dream graduate school isn’t easy, even after you’ve crushed the GRE exam, and it’s great that examPAL has built-in guidance for taking the next steps on your journey.
Extra Services: Each of examPAL’s plans comes with credits that students can exchange for practice questions and tests, but that’s not all they can be used for. Students can also exchange them for unique bonus services, such as extra essay reviews, private tutoring sessions, and expert assessments of your progress or study plan.
Fewer Practice Resources: examPAL comes up a bit short in terms of the amount of practice resources available to students. Although you can use credits to purchase extra practice questions or tests, there is still a lack of features such as flashcards and a mobile app, and the standard 1500 practice questions doesn’t compare with other courses that offer up to 5,000.

Bottom Line: examPAL offers a great price for top-notch services, a score improvement guarantee, and options to access even more personal resources. If flashcards and a mobile app aren’t necessities for your study plan, examPAL is a great option for your GRE prep.

The Economist GRE (Rank: #9)

The Economist GRE Tutor

*Update 6-17-20: The Economist’s GRE Tutor program is currently unavailable for purchase. They will launch an all-new program in Fall 2020.

Communicate with Real Tutors: Some test prep courses charge huge additional fees for that service, but the Economist GRE program has time messaging with real tutors built into each of its plans. Messaging with tutors is done through their in-app messaging system, and this ability to reach out and contact a real live human is definitely a selling point for this GRE prep program. On top of messaging with tutors, you’ll get up to 6 live one-on-one video tutoring sessions.
Practice Material: The Economist GRE prep course offers up to 6 full-length tests, depending on the plan you choose. The course also offers 5,000 practice questions and uses adaptive learning technology to help you focus on areas where you may struggle. This personalized learning system is one of the best out there—the more you use it, the more personalized it becomes.
Mobile Friendly:You’ll be able to study on the go with The Economist’s mobile/tablet friendly interface. It’s a great option for the student that’s always on the move and only has 20 minutes for a quick study session. Just know that not all features are available on mobile—like taking practice exams.
New to Market: The Economist is the new kid on the block in the GRE test prep space. They’ve managed to create a solid all-around course with a variety of features, but it’s not as seamless of an experience of some of the higher rated courses above. We recommend the Premium plan for most students and the Ultimate plan for someone that will need more tutoring help.

Bottom Line: The Economist is the new kid on the block in the GRE test prep space. They’ve managed to create a solid all-around course with a variety of features, but it’s not as seamless an experience as some of the higher-rated courses above. We recommend the Premium plan for most students and the Ultimate plan for someone that will need more tutoring help.

magoosh gre increase your gre score

Kaplan vs. Princeton Review GRE

Many people narrow their choices down to either Kaplan’s or The Princeton Review’s GRE prep courses, as both companies have been around for more than 35 years. Their GRE courses are refined, but the choice between these two depends on your specific needs and your learning style.

Course Options and Price

Kaplan and The Princeton Review are the only 2 companies on our list that offer GRE instruction in all the major formats: live online, self-paced online, in person, and private tutoring. Even so, The Princeton Review offers three different online GRE prep classes with unique schedules, material, and guarantees, while Kaplan only offers two. Kaplan’s GRE self-paced prep course includes 7 practice tests and over 5,000 practice questions, one of the largest question banks of our list, but The Princeton Review includes one more practice test than Kaplan and fewer practice questions. In terms of price, The Princeton Review’s self-paced course comes at a starting price of $399, $150 less than Kaplan’s starting price, and their live online/in person Ultimate course costs $100 less than the comparable course from Kaplan’s. Lastly, courses from The Princeton Review come with a few different versions of The Princeton Review Guarantee, promising as many as 162 points on the GRE quant section. Kaplan, on the other hand, only includes a higher score guarantee.

Overall

Kaplan and The Princeton Review’s GRE programs are similar, but The Princeton Review edges out Kaplan in every respect. Their courses are cheaper, come with a bit more variety in their schedule and curricula, and include better, more specific score guarantees. So unless you need the extra practice problems from Kaplan, we’d recommend going with Princeton Review. If you’re interested in learning more about these GRE classes in detail, see our full comparison of Kaplan and The Princeton Review GRE.

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PrepScholar vs Magoosh GRE

PrepScholar and Magoosh don’t aim to be as intensive or comprehensive as courses like Kaplan’s and The Princeton Review’s, but if you’re looking for affordable and effective GRE test prep online, these two courses are seriously worth looking into.

Course Options and Price

Magoosh has a reputation as one of the most easy-to-use and cost-effective GRE online prep courses out there, and this reputation is well-earned. They offer 6 months of access to practice tests and GRE prep questions, along with a 5-point score improvement guarantee, for only $179—a bargain when compared to the other top prep classes on our list. Usually, Magoosh would be the cheapest option for quality GRE instruction, but at the time of writing, PrepScholar is offering a year of access to a comparable course for only $38, accompanied by a 7-point score improvement guarantee. This is an incredible (and greatly-discounted) price, but it may not last for long, and it still doesn’t necessarily mean PrepScholar has the type of material that you need. Part of what makes Magoosh one of the best test prep options today is their emphasis on accessibility; they provide flashcards, a seamless mobile app, and excellent customer service that puts them at the forefront of today’s test prep industry. PrepScholar, in comparison, doesn’t include a mobile app at all, so using their GRE prep class requires sitting at a computer, which not every student has time for.

Overall

PrepScholar currently comes in at a lower price, but Magoosh provides students with a one-of-a-kind studying experience that can make studying for the GRE a breeze. This ease-of-use makes Magoosh our pick out of these two courses, but if that usability isn’t your top priority, PrepScholar could still certainly be the best course for you.

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Manhattan Prep vs Kaplan GRE

Manhattan Prep and Kaplan’s courses are some of the most comprehensive GRE classes out there. They’re both offered in all different formats, come in at high prices, and even include printed studying material, so those looking for a great all-inclusive course may have a hard time figuring out which of these two will give them the GRE prep experience they need.

Course Options and Price

Manhattan Prep’s cheapest GRE class is their self-paced Interact for GRE course, which costs only $249. Kaplan’s cheapest is well over that number at $449, but Manhattan Prep’s other GRE courses aren’t so competitively priced, ranging anywhere from $669 to $1,399 and including less material than Kaplan’s for hundreds of dollars more. Both companies offer classes in every format, allowing you to prepare for the GRE online at your own pace, view live-streamed GRE classes, or meet for class in person. One major difference between the two’s GRE prep services is that Kaplan offers a higher score guarantee—you can retake courses or ask for a refund if you qualify—while all purchases with Manhattan Prep are completely nonrefundable.

Overall

When comparing Kaplan GRE or Manhattan Prep GRE, there’s a lot that makes them similar: they come in at high price points and offer lots of course schedules in different formats. However, with their less expensive courses and higher score guarantee, Kaplan GRE is our recommendation for most students. Still, there are plenty of features for each course that we haven’t talked about here—you can compare the two in further detail through our Manhattan Prep vs Kaplan GRE comparison page.

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The Princeton Review vs Manhattan Prep GRE

The Princeton Review is one of the most well-established test prep companies out there, and their GRE courses reflect their experience. Manhattan Prep is a similarly large company offering in-depth GRE courses at a high-end price point, all of which include comprehensive course material created by an experienced staff.

Course Options and Price

Both The Princeton Review and Manhattan Prep sell courses in a variety of formats. Students can take self-paced online courses, view live online class sessions, meet with private tutors, or take classes in person. The Princeton Review’s GRE prep classes are not the cheapest on our list, with their classes starting at $399 and costing up to $1,099, but most of Manhattan Prep’s GRE courses are still more expensive. They start at $249 for their self-paced online course, but their live online GRE prep course costs $1,399, well over the comparable $1,099 course from The Princeton Review. In terms of features and guarantees, Manhattan Prep boasts an incredible 100,000+ practice GRE questions (more than you’ll ever need), but The Princeton Review offers more computer-adaptive practice tests as well as a higher score guarantee for each of their courses.

Overall

Although Manhattan Prep’s GRE courses are high-quality options for those seeking in-depth instruction, The Princeton Review offers invaluable practice tests and a higher score guarantee at a lower price. We’d recommend The Princeton Review for most students, though Manhattan Prep’s online GRE course may have exactly the features you need to succeed.

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Kaplan vs. Magoosh GRE

Kaplan and Magoosh GRE sit at opposite sides of the test prep spectrum—where Magoosh positions itself as an easy-to-use and affordable online GRE prep solution, Kaplan goes for a more traditional route, offering intensive class sessions both in person and online. Both are solid options for most GRE test-takers, even though we believe one prep course edges out the other in overall value.

Course Options and Price

In terms of having various course options, Kaplan definitely beats out Magoosh. They have several different GRE prep schedules and course styles (in person, live online, etc.) while Magoosh only offers self-paced prep services. Magoosh’s services, however, come at a cheaper price. For $149, Magoosh GRE includes video lessons, practice tests, thousands of practice questions and a +5 total score improvement guarantee. For only $30 more, users can extend their access to Magoosh’s GRE prep online from 1 month to 6 months. Kaplan’s cheapest GRE course costs close to 3x the price, but includes more tests and questions.

Overall

Magoosh GRE includes better score guarantees than Kaplan, all for just a fraction of Kaplan’s cost. And though Kaplan offers more practice material than Magoosh, Magoosh offers enough for most students to succeed. These features make Magoosh the best online GRE prep course out there, though Kaplan’s GRE courses may still be a good option for students looking for specialized course formats and lots of practice resources. To learn more about Magoosh and Kaplan in detail and see which one is right for you, read our full comparison of Kaplan and Magoosh GRE.

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Full GRE Prep Course Reviews

Magoosh GRE (Full Review)
examPAL GRE (Full Review)
The Princeton Review GRE (Full Review)
Kaplan GRE (Full Review)
Target Test Prep GRE (Full Review)
PrepScholar (Quick Overview)
Manhattan Prep GRE (Full Review)
The Economist GRE (Full Review)

Best GRE Apps

#1 Magoosh GRE Android App (also available on iOS)

The Magoosh GRE prep app is easily the best on our list, thanks in large part to the fact that Magoosh is geared entirely towards making a slick and accessible mobile GRE prep experience. It offers students the option to try it out for free, giving you a taste of its capabilities with 70 free video lessons and 40 free questions complete with video explanations and helpful articles. Upgrade to the Premium Magoosh GRE app, however, and you suddenly have access to over 1,000 practice questions, 200 video lessons, expert advice, tutorials, and progress tracking. When all of this combines with the natural fit of Magoosh’s intuitive mobile platform, the Magoosh GRE app is a sure bet for studying on the go.

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#2 Kaplan Test Prep App

Kaplan is one of the highest overall options on our list and its GRE study app is a big reason why. Coupled with the unique Kaplan Qbank app, which allows students to build customizable practice sets based on subject matter or difficulty, the Kaplan app for Android and iOS gives students a great resource for easy GRE studying. Also included: complete access to all course features, so you don’t miss a thing.

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#3 Princeton Review GRE App

Much like the Kaplan GRE app, this GRE app provides students with full access to their course materials on their mobile device or tablet. Whether in the form of GRE vocabulary flashcards, video lessons, practice questions, or support services, the Princeton Review app aims to give students the ability to take their full complement of resources with them everywhere they go, making it one of the top GRE apps on the market. However, some of the reviews for this app have been less than stellar, with many users reporting technical difficulties, so keep in mind that other prep apps may provide a more seamless user experience.

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Best GRE Flashcards

#1 Kaplan GRE Flashcards

For just $15, Kaplan flashcards combine two of the most powerful resources students can have: easy to handle physical cards that you can organize and carry with you anywhere, and a mobile interface that lets you study your vocabulary anytime, anywhere. With their Flashcards + App package, students can get access to over 500 frequently-tested vocab words including definitions, synonyms, pronunciation guides and sentence examples. Although 500 isn’t an amount that stands out from the crowd, the combination of mobile flashcards and physical GRE flashcards—which go with their built-in QuizBank feature—makes Kaplan our number 1 choice here.

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#2 Magoosh GRE Flashcards

Magoosh are the kings of mobile accessibility, so it’s no surprise that their flashcards come in mobile form. They bring the most content to the table with over 1,000 GRE flashcards with vocabulary (ranked from common, to basic, to advanced) and math available. They don’t quite take the top spot because they only offer an online version of their flashcards, but they come in a very close second because their GRE flashcards are FREE. Overall, Kaplan’s flashcards provide a little more substance, but Magoosh GRE flashcards make a great choice for anyone looking to do some quick mobile test prep as a supplement to Magoosh’s other resources, which are some of the best study materials around.

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#3 Princeton Review GRE Flashcards

The Princeton Review comes in at third place because, unlike Kaplan and Magoosh, there is no dedicated mobile option for accessing their flashcards. Princeton Review flashcard packs offer students access to 500 commonly tested vocabulary words for $13. Much like the Kaplan cards, Princeton Review flashcards offer synonyms, sentence examples, and pronunciation guides. Nonetheless, the lack of mobile access and truly average amount of cards keeps The Princeton Review at number 3.

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FAQs

Should I take a GRE prep course?

When it comes to preparing for the GRE—as with all tests—you actually only have a few options as a student. You can A: take it without preparing (our least favorite option, hopefully it’s your least favorite, too), B: study all on your own (guessing what’ll be on the test and creating your own practice questions is admirable, but not super effective) or C: find expertly-crafted resources to guide you through the test-preparation process.

GRE prep courses come in all different forms. Some of them include live-streamed online class sessions, some are held in person, and others come in the form of customizable study plans alongside helpful videos, flashcards, and reading material that you can use whenever works best for you. There’s a wide variety of course types with a wide variety of prices; sure, some GRE prep courses are expensive, but others are incredibly budget-friendly. Take Magoosh GRE, for instance, which includes a 5-point score improvement guarantee and 6 months of self-paced studying for only $149, one of the best (and cheapest) courses out there today. If you’re nervous about draining your wallet or getting into a schedule-consuming class, there are plenty of options that are both budget and calendar-friendly. Look at our in-depth reviews—such as our Magoosh GRE review—and we’re sure you’ll find an effective course that checks all the boxes for you.

As we see it, studying all on your own for the GRE is doable, but you’ll have to incorporate external resources at some point, and without a course to provide them, there’s no guarantee that you’ll actually get the score you need. Instead, consider companies that have made it their mission to provide you with accessible, easy-to-understand and time-tested prep material, personalized study plans, and guaranteed score improvements. With the right GRE prep course, you’ll be investing in a dependable company that will effectively guide you in your studying process—you won’t regret it!

What’s the best GRE prep course?

Each of the top GRE prep courses on our list includes something for everyone. You could choose examPAL for their score guarantee, Target Test Prep for their focus on the quant section, or any of the other courses for the specific features they have to offer. Still, we think that one course beats out all the others when it comes to providing overall bang-for-your-buck to most students: Magoosh GRE. Their affordability, accessibility, and great score guarantee make them a really appealing option when compared to more expensive courses that offer similar GRE instruction resources. Other courses could still easily have more value for you, though, so feel free to check out our full reviews (such as our Magoosh GRE review) of each major GRE prep course to find out which will best suit your test preparation needs.

What’s the most affordable GRE prep course?

At the time of writing, the cheapest full prep course available is PrepScholar’s GRE course, which includes thousands of GRE practice questions, personal study plans, adaptive practice tests, and a fantastic +7 score improvement guarantee for only $38! Generally, though, another course on our list does the best job of offering its course content at a really competitive price point: Magoosh GRE. Aside from PrepScholar’s particularly low current offering, Magoosh is the cheapest full GRE prep course on our list, and in our eyes, it’s also the most accessible and effective prep course on the market today. If you’re not looking for a full GRE prep experience, you can also find quiz banks and section-specific courses for even cheaper than these prices, but those options don’t compare to Magoosh GRE when it comes to overall course value.

How long does it take to prepare for the GRE?

The GRE is daunting, and preparing for the exam will be a different experience for each and every student. If you’re planning on taking the GRE and looking at different resources that could help you prepare, it’s important to nail down a time frame for your studying, which will in turn limit the GRE prep services you can use.

On average, students should allocate about 3 months of preparation time for the GRE. This number is flexible, though: some students do well after only a month of preparation, while others may need 6 months or even a year to study bit-by-bit over time. With that being said, think about your calendar and how the test prep process might fit into it. If you need extra flexibility for your test prep schedule, consider going with an online GRE prep course like Target Test Prep’s flexible plan, which features a monthly subscription model. If you don’t know when you’ll be able to study for the GRE, but want the option to start whenever you feel like, maybe PrepScholar GRE will be the best choice for you, as you can get course access for life with their affordable Lifetime plan. Test preparation resources like these come in many different formats, and we’re sure that of the best GRE prep courses on our list, you’ll find one that fits your schedule perfectly.

Who has the best GRE prep books and guides?

Many prep courses nowadays come in online-only formats, featuring interactive videos, flashcards, and even games that can teach you everything you need to know about the GRE. If you’re looking for pure reading material, though, there aren’t many companies on our list that include dedicated preparation materials in a book format. Kaplan GRE includes 2 full GRE prep books with their self-paced online prep courses, and you can rest assured that thanks to their years of experience as a top-tier company in the test prep industry, they know their way around the GRE. Kaplan isn’t your only option, though, as Manhattan prep’s GRE books also come included with their test prep courses. As we see it, Kaplan’s books will probably give you a bit more overall value for a lower price.

It’s important to note that you can find standalone GRE prep books from other companies out there on the market, but these prep books really aren’t the best way to maximize your study time if you’re using them all on their own. Prep books like Kaplan’s are meant to act as supplements to quality instruction that you can only get from qualified preparation professionals, and we believe that this more intensive instruction—with or without a good GRE test prep book—is the most sure-fire way to increase your GRE test score (and at an affordable price).

How much do GRE prep courses cost?

Test prep courses come in many forms and can include a variety of schedules, practice question bank sizes, and bonus features, which impacts their price. GRE prep courses cost generally between the mid $100s all the way up to over $1,000, but these prices are highly variable and are often cut down thanks to frequent discounts. In general, more expensive GRE prep classes often feature more 1-on-1 instruction from teachers or private tutors. Take examPAL’s Genius plan, for instance, which includes 3 hours of 1-on-1 tutoring sessions and costs $599, hundreds more than their other packages. Some companies offer courses that are cheaper than their standard offerings because they’re section-specific, such as Manhattan Prep’s quant/verbal-only packages. Courses can come in at fixed pay-up-front prices, but others work on a subscription model, such as Target Test Prep’s Flexible plan which costs $99/month. No two GRE test prep classes come with  the same features and prices, but if you take a look at our in-depth reviews and comparison charts, we’re sure you’ll find out which courses will be worth the cost for you!

Top 13 Best Online GRE Prep Courses of 2021

Rank GRE Course Feature Course Price
1 Magoosh GRE Best Overall Value $149
2 Achievable Practice Questions / Quizzes $269
5 Target Test Prep Best for Quant $99/month
3 The Princeton Review GRE Best Practice Tests $499
4 Kaplan GRE Test Day Experience $629
6 PrepScholar GRE Year-Long Access $38
7 Manhattan Prep GRE Best Qualified Instructors $549
8 examPAL GRE Best Essay Reviews $239
9 The Economist GRE Best Tutoring Options $206
10 TestMasters Best One-On-One Tutoring $899
11 PowerScore Best Admissions Prep Services $395
12 Barron’s GRE Best Low Cost/Budget Option $99
13 MLIC Best Test Score Guarantee $1495

 

8 replies
    • Brett says:

      Makosan,

      To determine our ratings we consult with successful GRE test takers, teachers, aggregate data from around the web, compare the specific course features, and test each course out ourselves when we can. We try to do as thorough of reviews as possible and remain unbiased. The goal is to lead exam takers to review courses that best suit each of their individual needs.

      Reply
    • Dylan says:

      Hi there. Thanks for the article a great read. I’m looking into prepscholar because they seem to have a solid product. What have you hear about them are they worth it? Thanks!

      Reply
      • Brett says:

        They have a 7+ point increase guarantee which is nice, but I primarily view PrepScholar as an ACT/SAT company who’s just getting their feet wet in the GRE space. I’d go with more established companies like a Magoosh, Kaplan, or Princeton Review. Best of luck!

        Reply
    • Brett says:

      Rilan,

      Great question. You have to submit a baseline score to Kaplan before using their course materials. You then would submit your test score to them if it did not increase or you were unsatisfied with your results. If your score doesn’t increase they will give you a full refund or allow you to retake again with their review materials. It’s a killer deal because unless you succeed you don’t really pay for the course. Additional details are on their site when you buy. Let us know if you have any other questions!

      Reply
  1. Tony says:

    Thank you for this great and well-organized information! I noticed that no mention is made of ETS, the official test maker, and their test preparation material. What are your thoughts about ETS?

    Reply
    • Brett says:

      Hi Tony,

      Great question. ETS provides great resources to help you prepare for the GRE and understand what to expect on test day. However, in my opinion, their materials alone aren’t sufficient for those really trying to maximize their score. I think the best approach is to utilize their materials alongside a full GRE prep course like those listed on this page. Hope this helps.

      Best of luck!

      Reply

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