Skip Nav

GRE Prep Online Guides and Tips

Introduction to GRE Analytical Writing

❶Making an outline can help you figure out how your argument should progress. Sometimes, when writing the third or the fourth paragraphs, test takers contradict their own opinions or points of view that they put forward in the first one or two paragraphs.

10 Awesome Overall GRE Writing Tips

GRE Essay Tips: Analyze an Issue Advice
Issue Essay vs Argument Essay: 11 Key Differences

Explore the concept of vengeance in the epic poem Beowulf. If you're writing about a historical event, try focusing on the forces that contributed to what happened. If you're writing about scientific research or findings, follow the scientific method to analyze your results.

You may not immediately know what your thesis statement should be, even once you've chosen your topic. Doing some brainstorming can help you discover what you think about your topic. Consider it from as many angles as you can.

Things that repeat are often important. See if you can decipher why these things are so crucial. Do they repeat in the same way each time, or differently? How does the text work? If you're writing a rhetorical analysis, for example, you might analyze how the author uses logical appeals to support her argument and decide whether you think the argument is effective.

If you're analyzing a creative work, consider things like imagery, visuals in a film, etc. If you're analyzing research, you may want to consider the methods and results and analyze whether the experiment is a good design. A mind map can be helpful to some people. Start with your central topic, and arrange smaller ideas around it in bubbles. Connect the bubbles to identify patterns and how things are related.

In fact, that can be a good way to start off! Don't discount any ideas just yet. Write down any element or fact that you think of as you examine your topic.

Come up with a thesis statement. The thesis statement is a sentence or two that summarizes the claim you will make in your paper. It tells the reader what your essay will be about. Depending on your assignment, you may need to work only with your primary sources the text or texts you're analyzing or with primary and secondary sources, such as other books or journal articles.

The assignment should tell you what types of sources are required. Good evidence supports your claim and makes your argument more convincing. List out the supporting evidence, noting where you found it, and how it supports your claim. An outline will help structure your essay and make writing it easier.

Be sure that you understand how long your essay needs to be. While some teachers are fine with the standard "5 paragraph essay" introduction, 3 body paragraphs, conclusion , many teachers prefer essays to be longer and explore topics more in-depth.

Structure your outline accordingly. If you're not quite sure how all your evidence fits together, don't worry! Making an outline can help you figure out how your argument should progress. You can also make a more informal outline that groups your ideas together in large groups. From there, you can decide what to talk about where.

Your essay will be as long as it needs to be to adequately discuss your topic. A common mistake students make is to choose a large topic and then allow only 3 body paragraphs to discuss it. This makes essays feel shallow or rushed. Don't be afraid to spend enough time discussing each detail! Your introduction should give your reader background information about your topic. Try to make your introduction engaging but not too overzealous.

Also avoid dramatic introductions beginning an essay with a question or exclamation is generally best to avoid. In general, do not use the first I or second you person in your essay. State your thesis, generally as the last sentence in the first paragraph. Revenge was a legally recognized right in ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. The many revenges in the epic poem Beowulf show that retribution was an essential part of the Anglo-Saxon age. However, not all revenges are created alike. The poet's portrayal of these revenges suggests that the dragon was more honorable in his act of revenge than Grendel's mother.

This introduction gives your readers information they should know to understand your argument, and then presents an argument about the complexity of a general topic revenge in the poem. This type of argument can be interesting because it suggests that the reader needs to think about the text very carefully and not take it at face value. Write your body paragraphs.

Each body paragraph should have 1 a topic sentence, 2 an analysis of some part of the text and 3 evidence from the text that supports your analysis and your thesis statement. A topic sentence tells the reader what the body paragraph will be about. The analysis of the text is where you make your argument. The evidence you provide supports your argument. Remember that each claim you make should support your thesis. The key to differentiating between the two attacks is the notion of excessive retribution.

She does this to lure Beowulf away from Heorot so she can kill him as well. The formula "CEE" may help you remember: Whenever you present a claim, make sure you present evidence to support that claim and explain how the evidence relates to your claim. Know when to quote or paraphrase.

Quoting means that you take the exact text and, placing it in quotation marks, insert it into your essay. Quoting is good when you use the precise wording of something to support your claim. Paraphrasing, on the other hand, is when you summarize the text. Paraphrasing can be used to give background or compress a lot of details into a short space. It can be good if you have a lot of information or would need to quote a huge portion of text to convey something.

Your conclusion is where you remind your reader of how you supported your argument. Some teachers also want you to make a broader connection in your conclusion. This could mean stating how your argument affects other claims about the text, or how your claim could change the view of someone reading the text you analyzed. Proofread your essay for spelling or grammar mistakes. A paper that contains many mistakes generally gets a lower grade than one that has been proofread and polished. Run a spell check, look for run-on sentences, and check for punctuation errors.

Make sure to also format your essay correctly. For example, using a pt standard font like Arial or Times New Roman and 1" margins is standard. Read your paper out loud. Reading out loud helps you to find places in the essay that might sound awkward. This is also a great way to find run-on sentences that you might not have noticed before.

Make sure that all characters, titles, places, etc. Teachers will often mark you down if the name of a main character is spelled incorrectly throughout your paper. Go back to the text or article and confirm that your spelling is correct. If you are analyzing a film, look up the list of characters online. Check two or three sources to make sure that you have the correct spelling. What do budding literary critics such as yourselves argue about? You make a pervasive, persistent case that a certain thing is true about a piece of literature.

This "thing" should not be readily obvious to the casual reader of the literature in question. It is what you draw out of the book or essay, how you interpret it. It is a claim that must be supported by specific evidence from the text. At least once during the course of writing your essay, isolate what you consider to be your thesis. Is your proposition both arguable and reasonable?

If it is obvious i. Argument requires analysis i. One test that may help is asking yourself what the opposite "side" of your argument would be. A good, complicated thesis which was proposed by one of your classmates is that "Although Mary Rowlandson says she often used the Bible as a source of comfort during her captivity, a closer reading of her narrative suggests her faith may have been more troubled by her experience than she lets on.

Your job in the paper is to convince your reader to join you. Another way to write an effective thesis statement is to use the form "If we look closely at x e. Look for images or metaphors that the author uses consistently.

What other sort of pattern can you identify in the text? How do you interpret this pattern so that your reader will understand the book, essay, poem, speech, etc. What philosophical, moral, ethical, etc.

What are the consequences of accepting the author's argument? Explain how the work functions as a piece of rhetoric-- how does the author attempt to convince his or her reader of something? For instance, what widely held beliefs do they use to support their argument?

How do they appeal to emotions, logic…. Question this major premise and see where it takes you. Examine how characters are presented in a story. How do they help the main character to develop? Which characters are trustworthy? Why are they presented this way? How the parts of the book or essay follow one another; how the parts are assembled to make a whole? Why does the author start where they start, end where they end? What is the logical progression of thought?

How might that progression be intended to affect the reader What effect might this progression of ideas have on a generic reader or on a reader from the time period in which the work was written?

Does the piece move from the general to the specific or vice versa? How are they related to each other? Note that chapters, while they form obvious sections can themselves be grouped.

Referring to the text: In writing analytic papers that address any kind of literature, it is necessary to refer to the text the specific words on the page of the book in order to support your argument. This means that you must quote and interpret passages that demonstrate or support your argument.


Main Topics

Privacy Policy

Introduction of Your Analytical Essay Outline The purpose of your introduction is to get the reader interested in your analysis. The introduction should include at least three things—a hook, your thesis statement, and a sentence or two describing how you intend to prove your thesis statement.

Privacy FAQs

GRE ® raters will not be looking for a particular developmental strategy or mode of writing. In fact, when GRE raters are trained, they review hundreds of Argument responses that, although highly diverse in content and form, display similar levels of critical thinking and analytical writing.

About Our Ads

10 Awesome Overall GRE Writing Tips. We’ll start out with our best general GRE Analytical Writing tips to help you prepare for both essays. #1: Use POWERPREP Online to Type Your Essays. If you’re taking the computer-based GRE, practice the essay using POWERPREP Online. Jennifer Land shares GMAT tips to tackle the Analytical Writing Assessment by identifying unsupported arguments and structuring your essay’s thesis statement.

Cookie Info

Dr. Beverly Hearn’s GRE Analytical Writing Tips All parts of the GRE can be practiced by using the Tennessee Electronic library. Using the internet, access. The most extensive and detailed gre analytical writing guide that exists today. Learn 71 amazing tips and strategies to score a Perfect on the AWA.