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Are You Aware of the Analytical Writing Section of the GRE Exam?

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Analytical Writing is one of the 3 sections of the GRE exam. Though it doesn’t garner enough attention as its counterparts — Quantitative and Verbal, the score which you obtain in this section will boost your overall GRE score by 6 points. Besides, it is an equally important section as many universities pay close attention to the AWA scores as well.

Analytical writing is segregated into 2 segments:

  • Analyze an Issue
  • Analyze an Argument

The objective of this particular section is to evaluate the following:

  1. How well you are able to communicate your ideas and thoughts.
  2. Your ability to examine the text and analyze the author’s claims, supplementary proof.
  3. Your command of the English language and vocabulary skills.
  4. Your skills to articulate with appropriate explanations and illustrations. If you are able to analyze the passage in a logical manner and demonstrate how you debate the topic from your viewpoint.

It is essential that you read a few sample essays initially so that you gather a clear idea about how to compose your essay. The AWA GRE essay samples can be found on the ETS website. They have actual sample answers which were graded and written by students in the GRE exam for both — Issue essays andArgument essays.  The sample essays should help you understand the structure of the essay, each body paragraph, the conclusion, etc. And, as you keep practicing you should be able to overcome your weaknesses.

The scoring is actually done twice — once by a human grader and then by an “E- rater” which is an automated essay grading system. The final score is a cumulative score of both the scores rounded off to the nearest half-point scale. If you would like to gain a better understanding of how the scoring system works it is recommended that you visit the ETS website and compare the essays which have been graded previously. ETS also offers a service where you can get your sample essays graded, but they don’t provide any feedback on the same.

Keep practicing on a regular basis to get a good command of the language and the essay writing process. Set out time to write practice essays, create a defined outline, brainstorm ideas, and jot them down. Ensure that you also practice proofreading the essay to avoid basic grammar mistakes, spelling errors, and irrelevant sentences. Doing so will help you identify the errors you make.

Now let’s see if you are eligible to take the exam or not. Below is a list of the criteria that you need to fulfill.

GRE Eligibility Criteria

Even though there are no specific GRE eligibility criteria for attempting the GRE exam, there are still a few that have to be met and they are:

  • You must have valid Government ID proof while attempting the GRE exam. The ID proof that you enter while registering for the exam should be the same as that you present at the GRE center.
  • There are no age restrictions for attempting the GRE exam.
  • The number of GRE attempts allowed is only 5 times in a year and the gap between each attempt must be 21 days.
  • With the current pandemic situation, you will not be allowed to enter the exam center without a face mask.
  • There are no educational qualifications expected as such by the ETS, however, the universities you are seeking admissions to would have their own guidelines for admissions.

Since the GRE is an assessment exam for students to gain admission to graduate courses, you are expected to have completed your undergraduate studies.

We hope you got an overview of the AWA section of the GRE exam and the eligibility criteria needed for you to take the exam. Good luck with your preparation and the exam!

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