physicist taking gre subject math, any advice?

Forum for the GRE subject test in mathematics.
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physicist taking gre subject math, any advice?

Post by rrrrogerrrr » Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:11 pm


I graduated from Physics and I don't have a solid background in Abstract Algebra and Number Theory.

Since I have limited time to study for my GRE subject math (1 month), I've been thinking about ignoring those topics and focusing in Calculus and Linear Algebra where I think I have better chances.

What do you think about this choice? Is a reasonably good performance in those areas going to put me over 800 in the scaled score? Assume the worst case scenario: I do terribly bad in Num. Theo. and Abs. Alg.

I will appreciate if you can provide some stats on the historic weights of each of those areas.



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Re: physicist taking gre subject math, any advice?

Post by not_an_engineer » Fri Sep 30, 2016 8:34 pm

According to ETS, Calculus makes up about 50% of the test and Linear Algebra + Abstract algebra another 25%. The rest is made up of real analysis, discrete mathematics, and a smattering of "additional topics". So I think you'll have a pretty hard time getting above 800. That said, I do agree that your time is probably better spent making sure you have the calc & LA down really well, rather than trying to learn whole new topics. That should get you to maybe 65% of the test.

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