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Issue Essay Example

As part of a new series for AWA, I’ll be posting a prompt our Premium students have responded to over at the Magoosh product (under real exam conditions) and giving my analysis of the essay. If you want, have a look at the prompt first and try your hand at the essay, and see how yours stacks up.

Prompt

Universities should require students to take courses only within those fields they are interested in studying.

Instructions
Write a response in which you discuss your views on the policy and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, you should consider the possible consequences of implementing the policy and explain how these consequences shape your position.

Student’s essay

The author states that students should only take classes within their realm of study. Although, students may gain more of a grasp on what they are studying, this requirement fails to take in what students can learn outside of their required classes. To say that students can only take classes within their concentration is occluding them to knowledge that they may learn in other fields of study.

For example, universities typically require students to pick their major, as well as a minor. Some programs may also require students to select a few elective classes as well, so students can establish themselves as more rounded individuals.

Also, taking classes outside of a student’s field of study may help boost the student’s overall GPA. For example, if a student has an in major GPA of 2.5 and an out of major GPA of 3.2, then the overall GPA will increase. However, it could be vice versa as well. If someone isn’t doing that great in their elective classes, it could bring their overall GPA down.

If this policy is implemented, the consequences may be severe. One consequence could be that a student may not be able to graduate on time because they may not have enough credits. Or they may not meet the GPA requirements to graduate because they failed a few classes within their major.

If the university decides that students can only take courses within his or her chosen field of study, then the university may not produce well rounded individuals.

My analysis

Score: 4.0
This essay is an example of a 4.0—just barely—that is undeveloped and thus on the short side. It is not an example of a longer, totally one-sided ‘4’ that ignores the directions (notice how the final body paragraph addresses the “consequences” mentioned in the instructions).

What the author has written is an intelligent response to the prompt. She doesn’t simply agree with the prompt, but takes the opposing side, providing support (“To say that students can only take classes within their concentration is occluding them to knowledge that they may learning other fields of study.”). In passing, I should mention that “occlude” is used incorrectly. This is not a major problem, but remember that, if you use GRE words, make sure you know how to use them correctly.

What could have easily made this essay much stronger is more. More words, more examples. In coming up with examples, the writer should avoid the wishy-washiness apparent in the third paragraph (“It could be vice versa as well.”). While such missteps might point at a 3.5, the essay is never unclear (the grammar and word usage—besides “occlude”—are accurate).

A note about essay grading

While I’d love to grade everyone’s practice essays, that’s simply not possible. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to grade new essays, as students’ essays have been chosen in advance. Instead, if you’re wondering how to get feedback on getting your practice AWA essays graded, check out this page:

How to Get Your AWA Practice Essays Graded?

If you have any questions about my analysis, let me know in the comments below!

Most Popular Resources

GRE ISSUE ESSAY

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GRE Issue Essay Samples

GRE Issue Essay 1 | GRE Issue Essay 2 | GRE Issue Essay 3 | GRE Issue Essay 4 | GRE Issue Essay 5 | GRE Issue Essay 6 | GRE Issue Essay 7 | GRE Issue Essay 8 | GRE Issue Essay 9 | GRE Issue Essay 10

The GRE issue essay is one of the essays of the test section. This section is specifically for measuring the analytical writing skills of a student. In an essay, you are required to write detailed passages on the given topics. There is a lot that can be judged from the written essay. That is why the writing skills should be sharpened before taking the issue test.

The GRE has two types of essays to be written, the issue essay and the argument essay. In the issue essay, you will be given a topic that is debatable. Since it is debatable, it can have two sides to it, one is in support of the topic and the other is against the topic. You can decide upon the stand you want to take and develop your line of thought in the issue essay that you write. Basically, the issue essay is about the way you perceive the given topic. That is why you should write your view, your thoughts, your experiences and examples in the essay.

In order to explain your stand, you can make use of examples and support your thought. This will make your essay impressive and strong. It should not only be convincing, it should be written in grammatically correct English and must have a logical connectivity throughout the essay. One thought should lead to another. However, nowhere in the essay should you waver from the main topic. It is possible that while explaining your stand, you divert from the topic and start discussing another issue. By doing this, the logic and connectivity of the essay is lost.

This essay tests various skills of the test taker. It is not only a test of his thinking capabilities, but it also checks his writing abilities. It measures how the test taker can express his thoughts. It also tests the use of grammar and sentence formation.


Preparing for the GRE Issue Essay
Since there are two essays to be written in GRE, it is very essential to understand the requirements of both the essays. The issue essay is considerably different from the argument essay. It would be a blunder to attempt these essays in the manner that you have been writing the essays in your previous classes. It requires preparation before the test. While preparing for the you should know the word limit of the essay, the marks and the time allotted to the essay writing section.

In order to prepare for the issue essay, you should also make an effort to attempt the sample questions of essays. Reading and learning is important, but writing and applying your knowledge is equally important. It gives you practice and you get to know how the actual test is going to be, what is the pattern of the test, whether you will be able to complete the test in the given time etc. Above all it makes you familiar with the real test, which helps you to gain confidence and remove your inhibitions.

The issue essay can be attempted to the best of one's capabilities only with good preparation and understanding. Thus, while preparing for the test, the student should make it a point to prepare for the issue essays as well.

GRE Issue Essay Samples

GRE Issue Essay 1 | GRE Issue Essay 2 | GRE Issue Essay 3 | GRE Issue Essay 4 | GRE Issue Essay 5 | GRE Issue Essay 6 | GRE Issue Essay 7 | GRE Issue Essay 8 | GRE Issue Essay 9 | GRE Issue Essay 10