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Tips to ace AWA on the GMAT



GMAT AWA - What is the task at hand?

You need to scrutinize an argument and explain your reasoning as a 350 to 400-word essay, typed in an editor akin to the notepad in the Windows OS. (There is no required word limit, the 350–400 words is more of a guideline).


Arguments tested in the AWA segment of the GMAT will have a few imperfections, flaws, or fallacies in reasoning. Preferably, you ought to distinguish the essential flaw and a couple of small ones and feature those and evaluate the argument.

If you have completed your Critical Reasoning preparation, you won't require any additional time in finding out the fallacies in an argument.


In this way, that leaves you with improving the manner in which you compose your essay. It significantly helps if you follow a structure in your essay.

For instance, one potential construction could be:


Begin the essay expressing primary and secondary flaws in the introduction and begin the case for why the argument is certainly not a solid one.

Utilize the following 2 to 3 passages to expand on the primary and secondary flaws using examples and questioning assumptions, if applicable, to support your point.

At long last, wrap your essay summing up how the author might have addressed the flaws so that the argument would become strong.


Sounds too simple? Indeed, that is all that takes. If there’s any statistic given, each piece of statistic you find ought to give you at least one highlight to talk about. Issues are somewhat more perplexing. Attempt to develop on the argument for issues yourself. Quite often, you can track down a reason and result for an issue. Keep in mind: nobody cares if your point is wrong. All they care about is whether you can make a sufficient case for it.


Try not to over put resources in this section. Time is a scarce asset, particularly when you get ready for a test like the GMAT. You will require the time you have for working on your quant and verbal scores.


How is your AWA scored on the GMAT?

Once you submit an essay, it scores you on 4 categories:

  1. Analysis of the issue

  2. Supports ideas

  3. Organizes coherent idea

  4. Language control

Based on these 4 categories it gives you an overall score for the essay. An ideal essay should:

● Identify and analyze significant flaws in the argument

● Support the critique using relevant supporting reasons and/or examples

● Write a clear, organized, and coherent response

●Demonstrate control of written English language, including diction, syntax, and conventions.


In the AWA, remember, you are not contending against the author: the point is to evaluate and improve the argument— not to show that the argument is off-base.

You should investigate the implications of suppositions made without evidence and show how the argument could be better situated with more exploration / proof / research / proof.

The mentality you ought to have is that while the argument might be valid, there are gaps that should be taken care of in order for you to be confident to make a claim.


The AWA essays are evaluated by a human and by an automated essay-scoring engine. If the rating differs by more than one point, an expert is called in to determine the final score.


According to the Graduate Management Admission Council, the owner of the GMAT, these are the elements that your essay will be scored on:

  • Overall quality of ideas about the issue and argument presented.

  • Overall ability to organize, develop, and express those ideas.

  • The relevant supporting reasons and examples used.

  • Ability to control the elements of standard written English.

GMAC also gives a more detailed scoring guide. As the paper is reviewed by software and a human, the organizing, structure, and design of the essay, and transition words are significant.


AWA is one of the more straightforward parts and you don't need to get ready for it however much you accomplish for Verbal or Quants. Attempt and practice English in your everyday use and you'll not be required to give any extra time in preparing for the AWA section.

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