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AWA GMAT - Key Things Worth Knowing

Updated on 27 June, 2023

Mrinal Mandal

Mrinal Mandal

Study Abroad Expert

You must have already heard about AWA GMAT. The full form of GMAT AWA IS Analytical Writing Assessment. If you look at AWA GMAT examples, then you will understand that this section needs the candidate to carefully analyze and understand the reason behind any given opinion/argument and express his/her critique of the same. The section tests the candidate’s critical thinking acumen along with his/her abilities to communicate opinions in the English language. The section has a single 30-minute writing task called Analysis of an Argument.

You will find several GMAT AWA samples that showcase the types of topics given. These usually cover general knowledge, business, and many other aspects. The essays are evaluated through a fusion of human evaluators and machine-based algorithms. If there are differences in the scores given by the two, then another human evaluator will review the score and adjust it, if required. 

Types of GMAT AWA Questions

You will find several options online for analytical writing assessment GMAT sample questions with answers. This will give you an idea of the GMAT AWA questions to expect. There are two core types in this section:

Analyze an IssueAnalyze an Argument
Assesses critical thinking abilities and powers of written expression.Assesses your understanding, analysis, and evaluation of specific arguments.
There is an issue statement that may be discussed from various angles and applied to diverse scenarios.You will get a small passage where any particular interpretation or action is advocated through claims, evidence, and reasons. You will have to talk about the logical viability of this argument as per the instructions through critical examination of the evidence and reasons.
This statement is accompanied by specific instructions. They include the following types:This is followed by specific instructions. They include the following types:

a. Write a response where you discuss the extent of your disagreement or agreement with the statement and explain your reasons for any position you have taken.

b. Give a response where you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with any recommendation, explaining your stance and reasoning.

c. Give a response where you discuss the extent of your disagreement/agreement with any claim with examples and reasons to support your position.

d. Write a response where you discuss the view that is closely in sync with your position, while explaining the reasons for the same. You should talk about both views in the piece.

e. Writing a response discussing the extent of disagreement/agreement with a claim and the reason on which this particular claim is based.

f. Giving a response discussing your views regarding a policy and explaining the reasons behind taking a position. You should take into account the consequences of policy implementation as well.

a. Respond by stating which evidence is required for analyzing the argument and how it would weaken/enhance the same.

b. Examine explicit and implicit assumptions in the argument. Talk about how these influence the argument and what could happen if they are not valid.

c. Talk about the questions that require answers for deciding on the validity of the argument and its subsequent recommendation. Talk about how the answers will help in the evaluation.

d. Respond by talking about the questions to be answered to decide on the viability of any particular advice and the argument it is based on. Talk about the answers and how they will help in evaluation.

e. Talk about the questions that require answers in order for any recommendation to ensure a predicted result.

f. Write about the questions to be answered for finding out whether any prediction and its underlying argument are reasonable or not. Respond by discussing one or many alternative explanations that may substitute any proposed reasoning/explanation and explain how this may take into account the facts given in the argument already.


How to Score in the Section

You should undertake GMAT analytical writing assessment preparation with care. Your analytical writing assessment GMAT score will depend on how well you interpret the question and express your own line of thought or reasoning. AWA is scored between 0.0-6.0. A score of 6 is outstanding while 5 is strong and 4 is considered adequate. The scores of 3 and 2 are limited and seriously flawed, while 1 is regarded as fundamentally deficient

You should carefully analyze AWA sample essays GMAT and see how writers express their opinions. Always stick with your point of view. No evaluator will want to view a piece where you are confused between multiple opinions. Even if you cannot decide between positions, identify one and emphasize that one likewise. The examination will test your capabilities with regard to supporting your own position instead of seeing whether you are picking the right side. Always be specific with your examples and instances. Keep refuting the other position with logical statements.

Recommended Reads:

GMAT EligibilitySyllabus For GMATExam Pattern of GMAT
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GMAT Results & GMAT ScoresValidity of GMAT ScoreGMAT Preparation Books

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Tips to prepare for Analytical writing

Here are some tips that will help you ace this section: 

  1. Be objective while writing and follow the instructions. This applies if you are writing any critique of an argument. Here you will not be presenting your opinion but showcasing criticism of the argument in an objective manner. 
  2. While critiquing any argument, identify flaws in its logical validity and reasoning. Identify assumptions but do not make them similar to the flaws. If the assumption is logical, then an argument can rest on the same. 
  3. The thesis statement is your conclusion. This should have a concise summary of the core point of your essay. 
  4. Do not show hesitancy in your writing. The essay is all about finding the right tone of voice and confidence. Focus on uncovering the argument, presenting your findings, and then presenting your opinion if required. 
  5. Use third-person pronouns without going into the second or first person. Use qualifying language including adverbs, adjectives and verbs. 
  6. Write concisely while avoiding fluff and wordiness. Make sure that the main points are highlighted in your essay. 
  7. Plan your essay before starting to write. Decide on the core points and arrange your concepts into paragraphs. Do not strive for perfection. 
  8. Use comfortable language to assure the evaluator that you are confident enough to express your points in written English.

Know More:

How to Prepare for GMAT ExamGMAT Exam FeeMBA Without GMAT in Canada
MBA Without GMAT in GermanyMBA Without GMAT in IrelandHow to Score 700 in GMAT


Frequently Asked Questions

How to answer analytical writing assessment questions?

You can answer this question by strongly evaluating the argument given and then planning your response. Break down your paragraphs into ideas or points which objectively analyze the argument, and its logical validity and take all given assumptions and evidence into account. 

You will provide reasoning at your end by taking all of these into account, along with providing instances to back up your ideas. Conclude by summarizing the main point of the essay.

Is AWA important for GMAT?

The AWA GMAT score is very important for gaining admission into MBA programs. The score matters since it is evaluated by admissions committees to see whether you can express your ideas in writing, which is a much-valued business school skill-set. Hence, you should not take this section lightly at all.

Does AWA score matter GMAT?

Yes, the AWA (Analytical Writing Assessment) score is very important in the GMAT. It will be checked carefully by universities and MBA schools for seeing whether you can convey ideas in written English. It may not always count directly towards your admission prospects since it is separately scored. However, it is still extremely important for admissions.

How to prepare for AWA GMAT?

You should always focus on crafting an objective writing stance. Check out practice and sample essays available for the AWA section. Analyze assumptions and evidence presented with the argument and then draw a conclusion in the thesis statement that you create. 

The AWA requires confident and well-expressed written answers in a concise form without excessive wordiness.

What is AWA in GMAT?

The AWA (Analytical Writing Assessment) section needs careful analysis of the reasoning backing any argument. You will have to critique the same. This is an essay that you have to write within 30 minutes on the given argument. The AWA section is a vital part of the GMAT which is otherwise designed to evaluate your logical and reasoning abilities.

What is a good AWA score in GMAT?

A good AWA score in the GMAT will be anywhere around 4.48 which is the minimum average. The last threshold should be 4, below which, it is difficult to call it a good score. Scoring 5 or even 6 is truly excellent but not as easy as it sounds.

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