Kaplan vs Princeton Review GRE

  • September 18, 2020
  • / GRE

When you’re thinking of taking the GRE, you need a brilliant course for GRE preparation to help you achieve your best score possible. Comparing two learning platforms head to head is an ideal way to compare courses and decide which would be right for you. In this article, we look at GRE programs offered by Kaplan vs The Princeton Review and break down the elements of their GRE course offerings.

Kaplan is a significant learning platform that supports students worldwide studying for US college tests, including the GRE, SAT, and GMAT. They have an excellent reputation, have helped thousands of students get into the graduate program or college they desire and are the leading course providers in many areas.

The Princeton Review has been helping students across the US to study for standardized tests for over 30 years. In 1981, two college graduates in New York started tutoring students for the SAT and soon realized that there was no large scale provision for them to study.

They set up The Princeton Review, and rapidly expanded their learning materials to include the GMAT, GRE, SAT, and LSAT exams. Now, they are one of the largest tutoring firms and have supported thousands of students with their learning. As well as online learning, they offer tutoring and admissions consulting to encourage students to get into their dream school.

Key Differences

Kaplan GRE
The Princeton Review GRE

When considering Kaplan vs The Princeton Review for test prep for the GRE, consider the key differences between the courses. The resources in the self-paced and live online courses are relatively similar, but The Princeton Review excels with in-person lessons and their high score program.

Elite GRE Program – The Princeton Review offers a Quant 162+ program for students that want to achieve the highest GRE scores. Kaplan does not offer a high scorer program.

In-Person Lessons – Led by teachers, The Princeton Review offers in-person classroom lessons. Kaplan does not offer in-person lessons.

Practice Questions – Kaplan has 5,000 practice questions in their QBank, The Princeton Review offer 3,000 practice questions

Practice Tests – The Princeton Review offer 8 full-length practice tests, Kaplan offers 7 full-length practice tests.

Official Test Day Experience – Kaplan offers a test day experience in a GRE testing center to prepare you for the exam; The Princeton Review does not provide this experience.

Course Options

Kaplan and Princeton Review offer simular course packages in their cost, style of teaching, online resources, and length of access.


The Princeton Review Tutoring

From The Princeton Review, the Ultimate program is available online and in-person, with live face to face lessons. The Ultimate course includes a total of 24 hours of live instruction from expert tutors, with a range of schedules for you to choose from. Outside of the lessons, there are also practice resources, including 160 hours of videos and online learning.

The Princeton Review offers an Elite Quant 162+ program for students who are already achieving a high score, excelling in the Math section, and want to boost their overall score.

If you’re thinking of enrolling in this course, make sure you are dedicated and have set aside enough time to fully complete the learning, practice materials, and practice tests.

The Elite Quant course comes with a score guarantee for the Quant section of 162 or above, but the course covers all aspects of the GRE, including verbal so that you will see your score increase in all sections. This course is also more personalized, with a study manager, 25 hours of live online lessons, and over 3,600 practice questions to complete.

Kaplan’s Instructor-Led Course is Live Online, with 21 hours of live instruction sessions built into a set schedule and study plan. The Live Online course does also comes with all the online resources, including on-demand video instruction, seven practice exams, Official Test Day Expertise, practice questions, and 2 GRE Prep Books. Although Kaplan does not state how long you have access to this course, we’re assuming you can access the online resources for six months.

Completing an instructor-led course that has scheduled sessions requires a time commitment and dedication to attend all the sessions. This type of prep GRE course is best for students that like outside accountability, a timetable to stick to and work to complete between sessions. You’ll also get the support of students in your class and your teacher.

Self Paced

The Princeton Review GRE Self Paced

The Princeton Review Online package gives you online access to the materials, including 3,500 practice questions and 24 hours of video instruction from expert teachers. This package also comes with 8 practice tests that you can complete throughout your study. Compared to other online companies like Magoosh, this is a fantastic learning package and at a good price.

Kaplan GRE offers a self-paced online course that gives you access for six months. This includes 180 hours of video lessons, over 5,000 practice questions, and practice exams. Included in this course are 2 GRE prep books, 7 full-length practice tests, and an Official Test Day Experience.

Self Paced GRE courses give you access to all online materials to complete at your own pace. If you happen to be a dedicated student who is self-motivated, this will be an excellent test prep option for you.


Courses for test preparation GRE start at similar prices for Kaplan and Princeton Review, as they are competitors and quite well matched.

The Princeton Review Pricing

Firstly, the Self-Paced program from The Princeton Review GRE is priced at $499, compared to Kaplan’s simular course at $449. These two programs give 6 months of access to online resources and come with many of the same features. If you can stretch the extra $50 for Princeton, we recommend doing so.

Kaplan GRE pricing

Next up, the Live Online sessions – Kaplan offers these as virtual video sessions at a cost of $999, and The Princeton Review is a little more expensive at $1,199 as they also give the option of in-person sessions. These packages also come with access to online materials and practice exams.

Finally, The Princeton Review offers an elite Quant 162+ program, which is available through in-person sessions or live online and is for students wanting to excel in the GRE. It’s priced at $1,499, which is great for the amount of 1 to 1 tutoring included in the price.

Quality of Resources

When considering the quality of resources, it’s important to look at the staff and their experience and knowledge. This indicates the quality of original resources, and how well they will be delivered by staff in the lessons.

Kaplan offer over 180 hours of video lessons, which you can either work through at your own pace or choose the Live Online course, where the lessons are scheduled and delivered through live video. Both courses have simular learning materials in the live videos and on-demand videos, and teachers lead both with experience in helping students study for the GRE.

Furthermore, Kaplan has a wealth of resources available on their GRE Channel, where you will find video lessons, short video explanations, and strategy help. These resources are great for students as you can watch them anywhere, anytime, outside of your scheduled learning.

If you’re looking for classroom experience with support from a teacher and fellow students, consider The Princeton Review’s Live Online course. This offers 24 hours of live instruction led by a teacher, that covers all the test content and answer strategies.

Each course has scheduled sessions, so when you’re enrolling, choose a schedule that works with your test timeline, home life, and schooling. You can also choose in-person classroom sessions if they are available at a center near you. Classroom learning and online live sessions are time-consuming, and you will need to attend every lesson, so make sure you choose a schedule that will work in your favor.

Being in a class group will be advantageous, as you can work with fellow classmates on homework and exam tips. The Princeton Review are more selective in their hiring process and have more qualified or experienced teachers than Kaplan. This can add huge benefits in your classroom lessons, as the teachers will be able to guide you through test preparation for GRE sessions and help to cement your understanding.

Practice Questions

Practice questions are an essential tool that you will need to use in your GRE prep course. When you complete the GRE test, you will have less than 1 minute to answer each question, and completing practice questions gives you important insights into the format and style of each question and how to answer them. Look for a GRE course that has at least 1,000 practice questions and problems across all sections of the GRE.

Kaplan GRE practice questions

Kaplan GRE has over 5,000 practice GRE questions available for you to complete throughout your study, hosted on their specialist platform – QBank. Kaplan’s QBank platform is a quiz tool that allows you to build and complete customized quizzes, from the 5,000 practice questions available.

This allows you to focus on a particular topic or area of weakness in that specific study session, alongside every question, where an explanation video or text helps you understand if your answer was correct or incorrect, and the reason behind this.

By choosing a course with feedback on every question, you will very quickly build your learning and see an improvement in your answers and overall GRE score.

The Princeton Review has a similar approach, with 3,500 practice questions across the GRE test prep sections. All their prep courses have access to this large bank of questions, which come in different formats and cover all aspects of the GRE. With over 3,500 questions, you won’t run out of problems to review in the Princeton Review GRE courses.

Practice Tests

Kaplan GRE Practice Test

Kaplan GRE offers a unique opportunity to complete an Official GRE test day experience at some point in your GRE prep test course. Not many other GRE prep providers offer an opportunity to take a dummy run at the GRE test, so this is a great plus point for Kaplan. You’ll be booked into a certified test center and take a practice exam in controlled conditions.

This experience will help you to build an understanding of what the actual test day will be like, and should remove some of the pressure or anxiety. If you are a student who gets anxious or nervous before a test, this could be a great opportunity to calm your nerves and focus on GRE test day.

Kaplan also offers 7 practice exams, which you can take at various points throughout your GRE prep course. Taking regular practice exams is a brilliant way to measure your strengths and weaknesses, and understand where you need to add more focus and study time in your test prep.

All of the GRE courses from The Princeton Review provide students with 8 full-length practice exams to complete during their course. Completing full-length tests gives you an experience of what the GRE will be like, helps to calm your nerves, and gives you an opportunity to explore your strength and weakness areas. Being able to experience this eight times during your test prep course will be a helpful activity, and will be key in boosting your score.

Teaching Quality

Both Kaplan GRE and The Princeton Review GRE are similar in their course offerings, providing students with a great set of learning resources, many practice questions, and tests, and opportunities to review their GRE prep. However, The Princeton Review does stand out thanks to its quality of teaching.

The Princeton Review GRE Tutoring

The Princeton Review are particular in their hiring process and seek teachers with years of experience in teaching and have achieved a high score in the GRE. This gives them real-life experience and a high level of intelligence that they can pass onto students.

Furthermore, with The Princeton Review GRE classroom sessions, your teacher will be responsible for teaching you the key content, and having a highly professional teacher is a huge benefit. It will enable you to get a great GRE score.

Kaplan GRE Tutoring

Kaplan also seeks to hire great teachers and educators to support students, and although their standards are not as high as The Princeton Review, the teachers at Kaplan are still brilliant. All their staff have experience as teachers in high schools or colleges and have taught the GRE course to many students before. During your GRE prep course, you can also lean on your teacher for advice on your study plan, practice exams, or exam nerves.

Physical Resources

Once again, Kaplan GRE and The Princeton Review GRE are fairly equal in their offering, and both supply you with written material to accompany your online GRE prep.

Kaplan has the best offering with two separate GRE guides covering the Verbal and Math sections of the exam. These GRE prep books are written by Kaplan, and follow the online structure of the course. They help you to complete additional prep and take your studies on the go. Kaplan offers these books with all of their courses.

The Princeton Review offers one Official GRE Manual for students studying in-person or online teaching courses. This manual is created by ETS (Educational Testing Service), the exam board that runs the GRE. It gives a different perspective on prep courses, compared to the learning from The Princeton Review.


The Princeton Review offers tutoring alongside their 162+ score guarantee. Their tutoring program is designed for students that are looking to excel in the GRE and score over 162 in the Quant and/or Verbal section. The cost of tutoring is $156 per hour, and you’ll be quickly matched with an expert tutor that can help you with specific topics in your prep courses.

Kaplan offers 3 hours of tutoring in their Plus packages. These are available for self-paced and live online prep courses and are a set price that includes tutoring and additional Math modules. This is a good option to boost your learning across the GRE.


When comparing Kaplan vs The Princeton Review, there are many similar aspects of their GRE courses. Both offer comprehensive learning materials, a wide range of example questions to work through, and high-quality teaching.

The Princeton Review has been supporting students across the US for over 20 years, with online and in-person learning. They offer very comprehensive resources, excellent teachers, and 3 test prep course packages to suit a range of budgets. We recommend considering The Princeton Review in your top three GRE prep courses.

If Kaplan vs The Princeton Review is the key decision you need to make, then have a look through each of the elements we’ve reviewed, and decide which are most important to you and your learning. This should help you choose the right course for you.

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