If you’re taking the GRE, you’ve likely heard of GRE PowerPrep. But what exactly is it? Why does everyone use these programs? And why aren’t they perfect study tools on their own?
In this article, I’ll explain the following:
 What the GRE PowerPrep tools are.
 Why you should be using them.
 What PowerPrep is missing.
 How you can use our free detailed question explanations to enhance your GRE PowerPrep study.
What Is PowerPrep? The Good and the Bad
PowerPrep is a series of GREpreparation tools made by ETS, the company that makes the GRE.
 PowerPrep Online consists of 2 free, fulllength practice tests that mirror exactly what you will see on test day.
 PowerPrep Plus Online is a new paid service that offers 2 neverbeforepublished exams (each $39.95) along with additional features, including AWA scoring, difficulty ratings for each question, and correct answer explanations.
The series also includes the free PowerPrep Test Preview Tool, which demonstrates the test structure, question types, and user interface you will experience on test day. It’s useful for familiarizing yourself with the test if you are a beginner, but it doesn’t provide much study material.
You can find more details on how to download PowerPrep Online or purchase PowerPrep Plus Online on the GRE website.
The Good
If you’ve read our GRE blog for long enough, you know that we highly recommend using official material from ETS to study for the GRE. The makers of the exam are guaranteed to have the most accurate material out there. This means that with the ETS GRE PowerPrep software, you can rest easy knowing that you aren’t studying anything that wouldn’t appear on the real GRE exam.
The Bad
Unfortunately, unless you get every single question right on the practice tests, questions alone aren’t enough to help you study effectively. The real study comes when you get questions wrong. Then you have to carefully analyze the question and determine the following:
 Why the correct answer is correct.
 Why your answer is not correct.
 Where you went wrong.
 How to get the question right next time.
These questions are often hard to answer on your own, which is where detailed answer explanations come in handy.
ETS doesn’t offer any explanations for the PowerPrep Online tests, either for free or for pay. So while you’re told what the correct answer is for every question, you don’t know why that answer is correct or how to get to it. This is frustrating for many students, who take to community forums to ask other test takers (often as confused as they are) about the questions.
PowerPrep Plus Online does offer correct answer explanations for both neverbeforepublished exams … if you’re willing to pay the $80 to access them. However, these explanations are really just correct answer explanations — they’re fairly superficial and focus largely on explaining why the answer is correct, not how to reach it or how to avoid wrong answer traps. Explanations like this can be helpful if you completely misinterpreted the question, but they don’t offer much in the way of transferable skills: strategies you can apply on similar questions moving forward to ensure you don’t make the same mistakes again.
How to Improve Your Study With Our GRE PowerPrep Question Explanations
PowerPrep GRE questions are great, but the lack of detailed question explanations makes them hard to study with. At PrepScholar, we think that using accurate study material is so important that we decided to create free indepth question explanations for every single ETS PowerPrep question.
These allnew PowerPrep GRE question explanations are written by the topscoring GRE experts who write questions and explanations for our GRE Prep Program. These experts have deconstructed each problem with a finetoothed comb, using their nuanced understanding of GRE question structure and years of experience identifying the traps students fall into on various question types to write highquality explanations that will help you understand how the problem works, what mistakes you made, and how to get this type of problem right next time.
How to Use This Page
To find a specific explanation use the search function (Control + F for Windows, Command + F for Mac) to search this page for the first few words of the ETS PowerPrep question.
Alternatively, if you know which test and which section your question comes from in the ETS PowerPrep software, you can use the tables below to narrow down your search. Once you’ve found the correct section, you can look through the questions in that section until you find the one you want.
Once you find your question, click on the link to take you to the explanation.
We’ll be releasing new PowerPrep GRE explanations every week, so stay tuned!
PowerPrep Online Test 1
First Verbal Reasoning Section
 Dramatic literature often ___ the history of a culture in that it takes
 Since she believed him to be both candid and trustworthy, she
 Given how ___ the shortcomings of the standard economic model
 There has been much handwringing about how unprepared
 The narratives that vanquished peoples have created of their
 The question of ___ in photography has lately become nontrivial
 Early critics of Emily Dickinson’s poetry mistook for
 The macromolecule RNA is common to all living beings, and DNA
 While in many ways their personalities could not have been more
 Even in this business, where ___ is part of everyday life, a talent for
 Select the sentence that provides support for an answer to a
 Based on information contained in the passage, which of the
 In the context in which it appears, “temporal” most nearly means
 The author of the passage mentions the classical conception of
 In the argument given, the two highlighted portions play which of
 Which of the following, if true, most seriously undermines the
 According to the passage, which of the following is true of the rock
 In the final paragraph of the passage, the author is concerned
 According to the passage, Bond hypothesized that which of the
 It can be inferred from the passage that in sediment cores from the

Second Verbal Reasoning Section
 In the 1950s, the country’s inhabitants were ___: most of them
 With the 1985 discovery of an ozone hole over Antarctica, an
 The ___ nature of classical tragedy in Athens belies the modern
 That the President manages the economy is an assumption ___ the
 Of course anyone who has ever perused an unmodernized text of
 To the untutored eye the tightly forested Ardennes hills around
 The exminister’s real crime, in the eyes of his ___ political friends
 Dreams are ___ in and of themselves, but, when combined with
 International financial issues are typically ___ by the United States
 Despite the pride that the play’s characters take in their
 It is his dubious distinction to have proved what nobody would
 The traditional gap between theorists and experimentalists is
 The vegetation at Stone Mountain, the best known of the large
 At no point in her investigation does Tate allow ___ commentary
 Since becoming commissioner, Mr. Vincente has challenged the
 Room acoustics design criteria are determined according to the
 Far from viewing Jefferson as a skeptical but enlightened
 Stories are a haunted genre; hardly ___ kind of story, the ghost
 The playwright’s approach is ___ in that her works ___ the theatrical
 I’ve long anticipated this retrospective of the artist’s work, hoping
 Higher energy prices would have many (i) ______ effects on society
 But they pay little attention to the opposite and more treacherous
 Once White stepped down from a political platform, where his
 Clearly the government faced a dilemma: it could hardly ___ trials
 The hodgepodge nature of local and federal law enforcement and
 Economic competition among nations may lead to new forms of
 The author of the passage would probably consider which of the
 In which sentence of the passage does the author provide
 In the context in which it appears, “realization” most nearly means
 It can be inferred from the passage that the author would agree
 The author mentions “ancient Mesopotamia” primarily in order to
 Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the support
 Which of the following statements is supported by the passage?
 The passage provides information on each of the following EXCEPT
 In the context in which it appears, “exceed” most nearly means
 Which of the following best characterizes the function of the
 The author’s primary purpose in the passage is to
 In which of the following does the author of the passage reinforce a
 It can be inferred from the passage that the author believes which
 The passage implies which of the following about the relationship
 The passage suggests which of the following about “skeleton
 In the context of the passage as a whole, “address” is closest in
 The author of the passage suggests that presentday readers
 Which of the following, if true, would make the information
 According to the passage, which of the following is true of the
 Which of the following, if true, most helps to explain why the time
 Which of the following best describes the organization of the
 The author suggests which of the following about most classical
 The passage states that Johnson composed all of the following
 According to the passage, which of the following factors help
 The passage suggests that two planets formed in close orbits that
 It can be inferred from the passage that the “rules and regulations”
 The highlighted sentence has which of the following functions in
 Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the
 The author of the passage attributes the influence of British
 The author of the passage mentions East End workingclass

First Quantitative Reasoning Section
 O is the center of the circle, and the perimeter of △AOB is 6
 A certain recipe requires 3/2 cups of sugar and makes 2 dozen
 The area of rectangular region ABCD The area of trapezoidal region
 PS = SR
 6 < x < 7 y = 8
 The average (arithmetic mean) of 100 measurements is 23, and the
 List L consists of the numbers 1, √2, x, and x^2, where x > 0, and the
 One of the roots of the equation x^2 + kx – 6 = 0 is 3, and k is a
 If x and y are the tens and the units digit, respectively, of the
 In the xyplane, what is the slope of the line whose equation is
 If p is a negative number and 0 < s < p, which of the following must
 The twelve numbers shown represent the ages, in years, of the
 Of the 750 participants in a professional meeting, 450 are female
 The sum of the five average ratings was calculated for each of the
 Airline B’s average rating for convenience was approximately
 If each of the average ratings was the arithmetic mean of the
 A developer has land that has x feet of lake frontage. The land is to
 If the diameter of circle C is 3 times the diameter of circle D, then
 Last year Kate spent between 1/4 and 1/3 of her gross income on
 The quantities S and T are positive and are related by the equation

Second Quantitative Reasoning Section
 List A: 0, 5, 10, 15, 20 List B: 5, 10, 15, 20, 25
 (x – 2y)(x + 2y) = 4
 A power station is located on the boundary of a square region that
 On the number line, the distance between x and 0 is 3
 The slope of line k 1
 The probability that both events E and F occur is 0.42
 The area of each of the three circular regions in the figure shown is
 How many threedigit positive integers are there such that the
 A teacher took a container filled with 16 liters of water to a school
 In triangle ABC, the measure of angle A is 25° and the measure of
 In the sunshine, an upright pole 12 feet tall is casting a shadow 8
 If a is the smallest prime number greater than 21 and b is the
 For the 3 numbers in a list, the average (arithmetic mean) and the
 The ratio of the number of male freshmen to the number of female
 How many of the enrolled students are not majoring in
 Sophomores constitute approximately what percent of the total
 A thirdgrade teacher has n boxes, each containing 12 pencils
 If (x + 2)(x – 3) = 0 and x > 1/2, what is the value of x^2
 If j and k are integers and jk is even, which of the following must be
 A fruit stand sells two varieties of apples at 1.00and1.25 per pound
 The list price of a certain tool is x dollars. In Store A the original
 The number of integers between 100 and 500 that are multiples of
 np < 0
 a and b are positive integers
 In the xycoordinate plane, triangle RST is equilateral. Points R and
 The length of rectangle B is 10 percent less than the length of
 a < 0 < b
 For the 31 used cars sold last month at Car Dealership X , which of
 If x is an integer, which of the following must be an even integer?
 A rectangular game board is composed of identical squares
 The Sun is approximately 1,400 million kilometers from the planet
 What is the least integer n such that 1/2^n < 0.001
 The figure above shows a regular 9sided polygon. What is the value
 How many of the six corporate sectors listed each contributed
 From 1988 to 1991, which corporate sector decreased its support
 The two corporate sectors that increased their support for the arts
 If a ≤ b ≤ c ≤ d ≤ e ≤ 110 and the average (arithmetic mean) of a, b, c, d
 A car manufacturer produced a car at a cost of d dollars and sold it
 The function f is defined for all numbers x by f(x) = x^2 + x. If t is a
 A tailor used 30 buttons that had an average (Arithmetic mean)
 x y
 The area of △ABD The area of △BCD
 Ray is 2 inches taller than Lin, and Ray is 3 inches taller than Sam
 The greatest prime factor of 1000 The greatest prime factor of 68
 x > 1
 A rectangular garden has a perimeter of 92 feet. If the length of the
 How many 2digit positive integers are there such that the product
 If (2x + 1)(x – 5) = 2 (x^2 – 1), what is the value of x
 At a certain fruit stand, the price of an apple is twice the price of an
 Judy drove 20 miles from her house to a theater at an average rate
 Approximately what percent of the females are juniors
 If 40 percent of the social science majors are females, how many
 Students not majoring in humanities constitute what percent of
 If x > 0, then (√(4x) + √(9x))^2 =
 Which of the following points are on the graphs of both the
 The average (arithmetic mean) of the 11 numbers in a list is 14. If

PowerPrep Online Test 2
First Verbal Reasoning Section

Second Verbal Reasoning Section

First Quantitative Reasoning Section

Second Quantitative Reasoning Section

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Author: Erika John
Erika graduated from the University of Washington and got a 99thpercentile score on the GMAT. With years of experience teaching standardized test prep and directing a private tutoring academy, Erika is passionate about giving students the tools they need to succeed in cracking the GMAT and GRE.
View all posts by Erika John