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   GRE Essay Section

The GRE Writing Assessment is used by graduate schools to evaluate your writing skills. This section has two essay questions evaluated by GRE essay graders (usually graduate students). Each of the two essays require a completely different strategy:

  • Present Your Perspective on an Issue (45 minutes)
    Present your opinion on a controversial issue.

  • Analysis of Argument (30 minutes)
    Analyze the reasoning in an argument and find its logical flaws.

   How to Tackle the Analytical Writing Assessment

Students tend to under-prepare for the writing section. This is ironic, because it is the one GRE section where a small amount of preparation can make a large difference on test day.

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1. Be particularly concerned with structure.
Clearly divide your essay into the introductory paragraph, two to three content paragraphs and a conclusion. Our Essay Section Guide includes sample essay templates to help you with this.


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2. Save it for your blog
. Be restrained when writing your essay and keep it professional and balanced. When we interviewed GRE essay graders about their biggest complaint, they asked us to tell you: please save it for your blog.


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3. Use transitional phrases
such as "first", "on the other hand," and "because" to help the reader to identify concepts between and within the paragraphs.


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4. Be a conformist.
Overworked GRE graders may not be in the mood to appreciate your eccentric humor or poetic inspiration. Play it safe.


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5. Clearly state your critique in the Analysis of Argument essay.
The Analysis of Argument question will show you an essay loaded with logical fallacies, such as the unwarranted assumption or fallacy of equivocation.


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6. Know the essays and how to answer them.
The Essay Section Guide shows you all of the approximately 500 actual GRE essay questions with selected sample answers to 20 of those essay questions.


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7. Practice, Practice, Practice.
The best preparation is practicing under real conditions within the 30/45-minute time frames. 800score offers 10 free practice timed essays with complete explanations and additional essays in our prep course. If you need personalized feedback and scoring, 800score has graded thousands of practice essays through our Essay Grading Service.


   Essay Section Guide Contents


Order the 800score GRE Prep Course to access Chapters 2 through 6 of the Online Prep Guide.

Chapter 1: Analytical Writing Basics
  • Analysis of Issue: how to tackle it.
  • Analysis of Argument: how to identify logical fallacies commonly used in essay questions, such as the unwarranted assumption or the fallacy of equivocation.
  • How international students should prepare for the essay section.
  • Ten most common errors: In the thousands of essays we have graded, 10 errors consistently recur.

Chapter 2: How to Structure Your Essays
  • Pace schedules for both essay types so that you get everything done on time.
  • Templates for both essay types to help structure your essays.



Chapter 3: How to Write Effectively
  • Basic rules of grammar that you must know.
  • How to write effective and concise arguments.
  • Writing drills and exercises to test your writing skills.


Ch. 4: How to Write Effectively

  • Basic rules of grammar that you must know.
  • How to write effective and concise arguments.
  • Writing drills and exercises to test your writing skills.

5. Answers to the Real Essay Questions
  • See all of the 500 real essay questions beforehand.
  • Read up to 20 sample answers to essay questions. Use these to get an idea of how to write your essays.

6. Application Essay Writing Guide (New)
  • 50-page guide about writing applications to graduate school programs. Learn how to write an appealing application essay, explain your past failures and highlight your career successes.


  Start Your Preparation Today
Get the Complete GRE Prep Course:

5 Complete GRE CAT Tests with complete explanations.
Exclusive Test Pacer training system built into all practice tests.
GRE Prep Guide complete guide to the Math and Verbal sections.
Essay Section Guide including real essay questions & explanations.
24-Hour Tutor email support for rapid answers to your questions.
Bonus 50-page section on writing application essays to graduate schools.

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  Essay Grading Service
Take sample timed essays and send them in for grading.

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