How to improve vocabulary? Does Achievable content cover it all?

I just started and want to know what resources need to be additionally referred to improve vocabulary. Or do we find enough content in site itself to learn new words?
Like the first vocab lesson mention we should keep small time spans during the day to keep learning new words, how to do so? Which tools/applications are best to learn.

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Hi @Asha, welcome!

Achievable GRE has about 1,500 vocabulary words, split into 300 “semantic clusters” with similar meanings of 5 words each. The idea is that you don’t need to learn each individual word’s meaning for the purpose of the GRE, so studying them in groups of 5 greatly decreases the study time required.

The way our system works, the quizzes will return to your review queue at intervals personalized to you based on your performance. Making some mistakes is part of the learning process and is completely expected. If you have the time, it’s best to try to keep your ready reviews as close to zero as possible - basically, every time you come back just hit that “Review (XX ready)” button on your dashboard and do as many as you can.

So, I think it’s best to start with our vocabulary content first - it’s all you need :slight_smile:

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Hi @Justin!

I was wondering if there is some thought process or method I am just missing with the vocab learning. I feel like I understand the concept of associating multiple words with one definition, but I am just not recalling or associating the words. As I go through my reviews, I feel like I am just guessing. I’m only on chapter 20 currently, and I did have a month long training rotation without internet but I am concerned it won’t get better for me! Any advice?

Also, not sure if I should have just started a new post for this!

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Hey @John1, thanks for the question - it’s related to this topic so it’s a good place to post it!

If you’re doing the quiz questions according to the schedule and keeping your outstanding reviews low, you definitely should be gradually learning the content.

If it still isn’t sticking, I would look at how your study habits. This is where it gets really fuzzy, but basically, you need to ensure you’re studying with a very high focus.

It’s just like learning to play a sport. Showing up to practice is important, but you need to ensure that you’re practicing the skills intentionally and correctly. Knocking out the review questions absentmindedly will get them done, but it won’t contribute much to your memory retention - it’s just going through the motions.

Likewise, when you’re reviewing the question after answering, it needs to be done wholeheartedly. In addition to carefully reviewing the correct answer, you need to understand why you chose the incorrect answer.

There are a few things you can do to help study intentionally:

  • Ensure there are no distractions (people, tv, music, etc)
  • Set aside specific time for your studying (next 20min I won’t even check my phone)
  • Build the habit (20min every day after breakfast)

I hope this helps!


When you say quiz questions, are you talking about at the end of a learned lesson? It used to just have me “mark complete,” but I’ve noticed it makes me answer questions at the end now. I recently added a time I’d like to be ready as a test date and now have a schedule (maybe that’s why), but all of the vocabulary stays as overdue because I can’t pass the quizzes. I’m currently focusing on lowering my reviews since they piled up while I was at that training event (so obviously I expected to be worse), but I definitely felt this way before I left as well.

I’ll try to focus more and put more time into the vocab to try and retain it. I appreciate you taking the time to respond! Thank you!

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Hey @John1,

That’s great, using the study planner definitely helps you stay on track. And yes, when you take a quiz at the end of a textbook page, those questions get added to your overall review quiz so we can ensure you are continuing to study them and remember them for exam day.

Everyone has a little bit of a different study plan, but basically the idea is that you want to try to read the textbook chapters on schedule, and then with whatever remaining time you have, complete as many review questions as possible.

The number of review questions will build over time and just focusing on them is a bit of a trap. It’s important to review your previously studied content, but the real goal is to get through everything, and that needs to be the priority.

If you feel like you’re getting too far behind and have a pile of “overdue” chapters, you can recreate your study plan with the same exam date and it’ll basically just reallocate the future work. This lets you do a kind of reset and makes future tasks manageable!