This page contains information on GMAT analytical writing syllabus which is designed to assess the critical thinking ability of a candidate. Read on for more detailed information on lessons and topics according to test structure and pattern.

GMAT Analytical Writing Syllabus

GMAT analytical writing syllabus is designed to test the ability of a candidate, to think critically, to frame the ideas, and to understand the logical content of a given text. Analytical thinking is a must to identify the logical substance. This skill plays an important part in decision making matters. GMAT analytical writing syllabus is structured to serve this purpose.

The analytical writing part of GMAT syllabus is divided into two sections namely analysis of an argument and analysis of an issue. An essay or a passage to be analyzed critically is given for the two sections mentioned in the former sentence. Each section needs to be completed in 30 minutes. Please go through the sections detailed below:

Complete GMAT Analytical Writing Syllabus

1. Analysis of an Argument

In this section of GMAT analytical writing syllabus, a paragraph or an argument is presented to candidates, which need to be analyzed critically. They should find the underlying reason through critical thinking and construct an argument on the given passage.

The critical review or the argument of the passage should reflect a clear understanding of the three aspects mentioned above (assumptions, strengths and weakness).Only from those aspects a candidate would be able to decide if the argument is logically strong.

After a profound understanding of the strengths and weakness of an argument, candidates are required to evaluate them to construct a logical argument. The main rule of the analysis of an argument is that the candidates should not take sides or argue against anything. Concrete examples should be given along with the arguments.

There are three concepts covered in GMAT analytical writing syllabus as:

  • Argument Construction – In this concept a comparison of supporting and unsupporting facts should be done to highlight the weakness and strength of the statement.
  • Argument Evaluation - This conceptcan be defined as identifying the assumptions and facts to analyze the strength and weakness in a statement..
  • Formulating a Plan Of Action – In this part of argument, examples are given to strengthen or weaken the conclusion.

All these concepts in analytical writing syllabus can be prepared only if the candidates are thorough with the three divisions of argument constructions namely:

  • General Strategies – General strategies for analysis includes tips like assembling ideas as a first step, then arranging them in a logical order, and to provide the conclusion from the candidate’s point of view.
  • Essay Template – Essay template may be defined as presenting an essay with aspects like a relevant introduction, body and conclusion.
  • Timing – Its is also called as time management. Making notes while analyzing the statement will help the person who is taking up the test to save time in spending more time in writing the essay.

The details given above are the concepts and divisions, in the section of analysis of an argument.

2. Analysis of an Issue

In this section of analysis of an issue, the candidates will be presented with a paragraph to analyze the complex ideas, from their view point. They have to understand the pros and cons of both the sides of the issue to take sides.

A good organization of complex ideas through critical thinking will help them to debate the issue. They have to observe various perspectives of the issue to substantiate their side, with strong examples.

The candidates should present their observations in a simple and an effective language. Along with their critical thinking and observing skills, the lessons in this section also cover the need of an effective communication. It is always advised to use short and appropriate words.

Analysis of issue section GMAT syllabus covers the following two concepts as:

  • Argument Evaluation - In this process an analysis of pros and cons in a statement is done along with identifying the facts, assumptions to determine whether to agree or disagree with author’s point of view.  
  • Formulating and Evaluating an Action Plan –This is phase in analysis of issue where the claim of a candidatei.e. agreement or disagreement with statement is explained with examples.

This section is divided into the following four vital parts:

  • What You are Expected to Do? - Before writing an essay, spend 3 to 4 minutes in identifying complications of essay, and make a note of them in brief points. Then start writing the essay.
  • Three Common Logical Fallacies - Logical fallacies are nothing but the misconceptions given in a statement. There are three types of fallacies in most of the statement namely invalid arguments, wrong usage of terminologies and false assumptions.  
  • Essay Template - A good essay with systematic structure as an introduction, body and conclusion.
  • Timing - To complete an essay within the given time by following tips and strategies.

This is detailed description of the analysis of issue section in AWA or analytical writing assessment.

These are the two detailed sections GMAT analytical writing section. Critical thinking and a good presentation of thoughts plays as a common aspect between these two sections of GMAT.

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