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GRE TC Challenge Questions

In honor of the New GRE Verbal Questions Guide, I’ve come up with some Text Completion challenge questions (Reading Comprehension and Sentence Equivalence challenges will follow soon).

The questions are ordered in terms of difficulty and try to accurately capture the “flavor” of these most recent questions. (I’ll describe more what I mean by “flavor” in the explanations post, which will be up shortly).


Long considered folk wisdom, the notion that talent is _______ has recently been called into doubt by those asserting that the emergence of talent is predicated on a complex interplay of circumstances (disciplined training, external motivation, early exposure), thereby suggesting that _______ may play a far less crucial role than previously thought.

Blank (i)

(A) hard-wired
(B) fleeting
(C) moldable

Blank (ii)

(D) practice
(E) upbringing
(F) genetics


Surveys recently administered to middle-level managers in the technology sector suggest that an eager willingness on the part of a new employee to complete tasks is hardly a reliable indicator of whether that employee will continue to work (i) ____________; after all, even the most (ii) ____________ of new hires takes a while to exhibit the first signs of malingering.

Blank (i)
(A) after hours
(B) uninterrupted
(C) with gusto

Blank (ii)
(D) uncaring
(E) outgoing
(F) alacritous


The notion that our political parties trumpet their differences during election time only to make amends as soon as the incumbent is sworn into office has become ________; reelection into any political office has long come with _______—nary a peep of dissent against the party line or your political career is kaput.

Blank (i)
(A) trite
(B) untenable
(C) hazardous

Blank (ii)
(D) a heightened sense of danger
(E) a series of broken promises
(F) the concession of unflinching partisanship

Very Hard

Amrulka maintains that the media is all to quick to peddle the common trope of the prevaricating politician; in doing so, she argues, it overlooks the possibility that the inability to account for one’s actions during a scandal is not necessarily tantamount to _______.

(A) ineptitude
(B) complicity
(C) vindication
(D) backpedalling
(E) repudiation

In an age in which the shameless confessional has reached its clumsy apotheosis on social media sites, which are ceaselessly abuzz with up-to-the-minute revelations, the work of the memoirist seems (i)______ the zeitgeist. This turn of events is not altogether surprising considering that, unlike those who pour forth their innermost thoughts the moment they hatch, the memoirist does the opposite: she must mull over—often to the point of obsession—those details that will best make for a compelling narrative, even if the result (ii) ______ the original sentiment. Her art, then, is ultimately one of (iii) ______

Blank (i)
(A) suspiciously dependent upon
(B) curiously disconnected from
(C) more in step than ever with

Blank (ii)
(D) invokes
(E) obscures
(F) disregards

Blank (iii)
(G) outright refusal
(H) subtle concession
(I) partial concealment


Update 9/18/14: Explanations now available here!

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