I took the GRE today, and I was really nervous because I needed a decent score for U of A (not to mention that I base 80% of my self-worth on standardized test scores). Not only have I not taken a high-stakes, thinking person's test in quite some time (about 10 years), I started to think that my brain is atrophying the longer I go without college (about 4 years). I especially loathed the math portion of the test because it made me realize that, except for balancing my checkbook and calculating grades (besides, the computer does most of both of these tasks) I just don't think in numbers anymore.
Am I missing out? Really, I nearly had a panic attack when I forgot how to find the perimeter of a circle, and then I had to multiply square roots of things and find the greatest common factor for 3 to the 100th power and 3 to the 97th power. It's not that I can't reason my way through these problems, most of the time, it's just that the foundation--all the geometric theorems, the formulas for finding out things, the rules for multiplying numbers with exponents--those things are all rusted and shoved into the very back of my brain where all the other stuff from my sophomore year of high school lives. But do I really need these things, except if I need to take another test sometime? Is my daily life really less for not knowing? Weigh in on this, readers, and I will start thinking about math again.
Anyway, I kicked so much ass on the verbal part of the test--700 out of a possible 800. I'm glad I looked through that section of my GRE guide because I was able to recognize some of the tricks and traps on the test. In math, I got a 660, which gives me a total score that is plenty good for an MLS program, but not good enough for engineering school. I think my essays were decent, too, but again, I'm just not writing like that anymore now that I am not in school. And the experimental portion of my test was a second essay (I was hoping for more vocabulary questions), so I had to write 3 total. My brain is exhausted.