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The GRE is a tough test, but it doesn’t have to be. So whether you’re a maths whiz or not, everyone can use a little extra help! One of the best ways to improve your maths score is to master the GRE on-screen calculator. It may seem like a simple tool, but it can be a real game-changer if you know how to use it effectively. In this blog post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about the GRE on-screen calculator, including its basic features and more advanced capabilities. We’ll also give you some tips on how to use it strategically to save time and improve your accuracy.

In this blog:

  1. Should You Use the GRE On-Screen Calculator?
  2. How to Use the GRE Calculator?
  3. Getting Comfortable with the GRE Calculator Interface
  4. Tips for Using the Calculator Efficiently
  5. Drawbacks of Using the GRE On-Screen Calculator
  6. When Should You Use the GRE Calculator?

Should You Use the GRE On-Screen Calculator?

Before we dive into the details, let’s establish why you should use the GRE on-screen calculator in the first place. While some test-takers may feel confident in their maths skills, the GRE often presents complex problems that can benefit from calculator assistance. Here are a few reasons why using the on-screen calculator is essential:

  1. Time Efficiency: The GRE is a timed test and every second counts. The calculator can help you quickly perform calculations, saving you valuable time for more challenging questions.
  2. Complex Calculations: Some GRE questions involve intricate calculations that are challenging to do mentally. The calculator can handle these calculations effortlessly.
  3. Accuracy: Human error is always a possibility when doing mental calculations. The calculator ensures precision in your maths, reducing the chances of making mistakes.

Now, let’s get into the specifics of how to use the GRE on-screen calculator effectively.

How to Use the GRE Calculator?

To access the on-screen calculator during the GRE, click on the GRE calculator icon. On the computer screen, you’ll see a calculator icon in the test interface. Click on this icon to open the calculator.

Once you’ve opened the calculator, you’ll notice that it’s a basic four-function calculator, capable of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. While it might not have advanced features, it’s still a powerful tool for solving GRE maths problems.

shortcut for GRE Calculator

Getting Comfortable with the GRE Calculator Interface

The on-screen calculator consists of a display area where you can see your inputs and results, as well as buttons for performing calculations. Here’s a quick rundown of the calculator’s interface:

  • Display: The display area is where you’ll see the numbers and operations you input and the results of your calculations. It’s located at the top of the calculator.
  • Number Buttons: These are the standard numeric buttons (0-9) that you use to input numbers into the calculator.
  • Operation Buttons: These buttons represent the four basic arithmetic operations: addition (+), subtraction (-), multiplication (*), and division (/). Use them to perform calculations.
  • Clear Buttons: The “C” button clears the last input or calculation, while the “CE” button clears the entire input field and starts fresh.
  • Decimal Point: The “.” button allows you to input decimal numbers.
  • Equal Sign: The “=” button calculates the result of your input.

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Tips for Using the Calculator Efficiently

Now that you’re familiar with the calculator’s interface, let’s explore some tips for using it efficiently during the GRE:

  1. Practice, a lot: Familiarise yourself with the calculator by using it during your GRE prep. This will help you become comfortable with its layout and functionality.
  2. Keeping it simple: While the calculator can handle complex calculations, it’s often best to keep your calculations as simple as possible to save time. Round numbers when appropriate and use the calculator for precision.
  3. Double-Check Your Entries: It’s easy to make data entry mistakes when using the calculator. Always double-check your inputs to ensure accuracy.
  4. Use Parentheses: If your calculations involve multiple operations, use parentheses to specify the order of operations. This ensures that your calculations are carried out correctly.
  5. Limit Its Use: While the calculator is a valuable tool, it’s important not to become overly reliant on it. Use it for calculations that genuinely require it, and try to solve simpler problems mentally to save time.

Drawbacks of Using the GRE On-Screen Calculator

It’s essential to be aware of the limitations of the GRE on-screen calculator:

  • No Memory Function: The calculator doesn’t have a memory feature (e.g., M+, M-, MR, MC). You can’t store numbers for later use.
  • Limited Functions: The calculator only supports basic arithmetic operations. It can’t perform advanced functions like square roots, exponents, or trigonometric calculations.
  • No Scientific Notation: If you encounter very large or very small numbers, you won’t be able to use scientific notation on the calculator.
  • No Graphing: The calculator can’t plot graphs or perform graph-related tasks.

Suggested Read: GRE Math Practice Without a Calculator: Quick Solutions & Techniques for Mental Math

When Should You Use the GRE Calculator?

The GRE Calculator allows students to strategically save time. However, knowing when to use the calculator is just as crucial as knowing how to use it. Here are some scenarios in which using the calculator is beneficial:

  • Complex Arithmetic: Whenever you encounter arithmetic problems involving large numbers or long calculations, use the calculator to save time and reduce the risk of errors.
  • Data Interpretation: In the GRE’s data interpretation questions, you may need to perform calculations based on tables or graphs. The calculator can simplify these tasks.
  • Checking Answers: After solving a problem mentally, consider using the calculator to double-check your answer for accuracy.
  • Time Management: Use the calculator strategically to save time for more challenging questions. Don’t waste time on calculations that could be done mentally.

The GRE on-screen calculator is a valuable tool that can aid you in tackling maths problems efficiently and accurately. By understanding its interface, limitations, and when to use it, you can maximize its utility during the test. Remember that practice is key, so incorporate the calculator into your GRE preparation to become comfortable and proficient in its use. With the right approach and Jamboree, you can boost your maths performance and increase your chances of achieving your desired GRE score. Book a free GRE class today!

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