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Ready for a New Question Type on the Revised GRE?

Just as the verbal section on the Revised GRE is offering up multiple answer questions, so, too, will the math section. The new GRE is officially calling these Multiple Choice Questions: Select One or More Answers. For brevity’s sake, I’m going to call them Multiple Answer Questions.

Doesn’t sound much more complicated than the Sentence Equivalence Question? Well, I could ask you to imagine a question that has ten possible answer choices, any number of which could be correct. Or, I could just ask you to turn to page 123 of the ETS Revised GRE book, for those of you who’ve already picked up a copy.

Those well-versed in their combinations/permutations problem know the chances of guessing correctly on this question is 1 in 1,023, odds so slim the question might as well have been a big empty fill-in the blank (yeah, the math section has those too).

I’m probably making these quantitative Multiple Answer Questions scarier than they actually are. Most will probably only have five or six possible answer choices, not ten. The bottom-line: if you know the concept being tested, and are careful and methodical, then you should be able to get this cumbersome question type correct.

Here is a math question, of the ilk described above, that I think many of us are capable of getting right if we’re careful:

If n is a two-digit number, in which n = x^y. If  x + y < 8, and x and y are positive integers greater than one, then the units digit of n could be which of the following?

(A) 0

(B) 1

(C) 2

(D) 3

(E) 4

(F) 5

(G) 6

(H) 7

(I) 8

(J) 9

As a side note, on the actual Revised GRE test each answer choice will have a square around it. When you see the square you know you’re dealing with Multiple Answer Questions. If there is a circle around the answer choice, then it is business as usual—one answer only.

As for the question above, the answers are (B), (C), (E), (F), (G) and (H).

If you missed the question, remember that x + y has to be less than 8. Also, make sure you write something down when tackling Multiple Answer Questions. Trying to juggle all the information on a Multiple Answer Question will surely get you in trouble.

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