GMAT Essay

Analytical Writing Assessment





As the name suggests, the Essay section of GMAT is used not to determine the writing ability, but the analytical ability of the student. This is achieved through the two essay segments in this section. While one essay deal with the Analysis of an issue the other deals with the Analysis of an argument. The topics for the essays are usually pertaining to business or any general issue. Both the essays have to be completed within the time span of 60 minutes, i.e.; 30 minutes per essay. The student is presented with the topics one at a time and is not allowed to extend his time limit for one essay towards the other. All the changes or rephrasing that the student wishes to make on his essay has to be completed within the 30 minute time span allotted to him. At the end of the time limit of each essay the student is permitted a five minutes break. This break is optional and the student can start on his next task immediately if he wishes, But, it is advisable to use the permitted break time to relax and prepare oneself toward the next aligned tasks. The essays need not be very

  • Elaborate
  • Comprehensive
  • High styled

The student should concentrate more on writing the essays

  • Concisely
  • Eloquently

Long winding sentences and beating around the bush style will not help boost the students' score. But, a pithy, well presented and expressive, to the mark essay goes a long way in securing a high score for the student.

GMAT Essay - Analysis of an Issue

The Analysis of an issue is the first of the two essays that the student is expected to deal with. In this section the student is presented with a topic on which he is expected to project his views and arguments. The examiners expect the essay to be investigative and illustrative. The essay has to be challenging and present the student's perspective on the given topic. It would be quite advantages to the student to use anecdotes from personnel experience and observation or from books.

The score for this segment is calculated based on the student's ability to investigate complexities of the chosen issue and present his argument. The student's argument could be either in defense or in offence of the issue. The chief factor here is the stand point that the student takes of the issue and how well an argument he is able to present for his choice.

This section of the essay is helpful in determining how well the student is able to communicate his ideas, thoughts and its process to others

Analysis of an Argument

The second essay which is the Analysis of an argument deals with how the student analyses an argument presented to him. The student is expected to study the argument and investigate the reasoning for it and write his assessment of it. The essay is not about the students view in the argument but the students understanding of what is being said through the argument.

Students find it helpful to approach to topic by reviewing it with questions such as

  • What doubtful hypothesis motivates the thoughts in the wake of the argument?
  • What substitute rationalization or counterexamples might weaken the conclusion?
  • What sort of facts could help strengthen or counter the argument?

This section helps to determine the student's skill in devising a suitable and practical assessment of a precise ending supported by an explicit line of thought.