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Pls rate my GMAT essay(Kaplan)

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Joined: 20 Sep 2012
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Pls rate my GMAT essay(Kaplan) [#permalink] New post 17 Sep 2013, 03:38

Any suggestions to improve my AWA skills would be most welcome.. Thanks in advance..



The following appeared as part of an editorial in a campus newspaper:

“With an increasing demand for highly skilled workers, this nation will soon face a serious labor shortage. New positions in technical and professional occupations are increasing rapidly, while at the same time the total labor force is growing slowly. Moreover, the government is proposing to cut funds for aid to education in the near future.”


The editor of the newspaper has reached to the conclusion that in the near future, the nation will face a serious labor shortage due to the slowly growing labor force in comparison with the rapidly increasing positions and the government proposal to cut funds for aid to education. However, this conclusion relies on assumptions for which there is no clear evidence.

The editor fails to consider the fact that the new positions might be low paying jobs due to which the labor are not interested to apply for them. They might be paid more handsomely in their current jobs. The editor also fails to provide more insight on the nature of the nation's economy. The nation might be an agrarian economy where people are more interested in agricultural related courses and working in farms because of the high returns they get from the yield which would have been much more than the pay they would have got in technical or professional occupations. The editor would be strengthening his arguments if he provides evidence or facts on the nature of the economy and pay related details of the new positions.

Secondly, the editor has not provided facts on the current state of the nation. The nation might have been reeling under recession until recently and unemployment might have been at an all time high. So the new positions will only bolster the economy and provide employment. The editor also fails to consider the fact that the sudden surge in positions might after all be a temporary phenomenon. If the editor provides proof that this kind of situation has not occured in the past and the increasing demand for highly skilled workers has been continuing in the same way since quite some time, the argument will be strengthened considerably.
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Re: Pls rate my GMAT essay(Kaplan) [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2013, 09:29
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This essay would receive a 2.5 or 3 if I were grading it.

The first glaring error is that it is incomplete. your argument needs to have a conclusion. The second problem is with grammatical and idiomatic errors for instance in your sentence:

might be low paying jobs due to which the labor are not interested to apply for them

The due to which is an improper idiom as well as the interested to apply and the word labor does not appropriately refer to the people - this makes for a confusing point.

Having a template with room for two or three errors may help you to organize your thinking.

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Joined: 20 Sep 2012
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Re: Pls rate my GMAT essay(Kaplan) [#permalink] New post 20 Sep 2013, 07:29
Thanks Becky. Will improve on it. Can you give me the correct form of this idiom 'due to which the labor are not interested to apply for them' ?
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Re: Pls rate my GMAT essay(Kaplan) [#permalink] New post 22 Sep 2014, 18:39
Hi guys!

This is actually my second practice essay. I've read some of the advices for the AWA but would definitely love some tips! I'd be more than gratefull if you could rate my essay so I have at least an idea of how I'm doing.

Thanks a lot!!


“Since a competing lower-priced newspaper, The Bugle, was started five years ago, The Mercury’s circulation has declined by 10,000 readers. The best way to get more people to read The Mercury is to reduce its price below that of The Bugle, at least until circulation increases to former levels. The increased circulation of The Mercury will attract more businesses to buy advertising space in the paper.”


The argument claims that The Mercury’s circulation has significantly declined since a lower-priced competing newspaper started doing business on the area five years ago. Hence, The Mercury should reduce its price even below that of the competitor in order to increase the newspaper’s circulation, which consequently would attract more businesses to buy advertising space in the paper. Stated in this way the argument fails to mention several key factors, on the basis of which it could be evaluated. The conclusion relies on assumptions, for which there is no clear evidence. Therefore, the argument is rather unconvincing and has several flaws.

First, the argument readily assumes that by lowering its prices the newspaper circulation will undoubtedly increase. This statement is a stretch and it’s not substantiated in any way. There are many examples in other areas of business and commerce where companies have lowered their prices as an on marketing strategy and have been very unsuccessful. For instance, Pantene, a very well known hair-care brand in Latin-America, started to lose market share after Sedal went into business back at the 80’s. Pantene lowered significantly most of its prices and regain some market share. Things didn’t go as smoothly as thought, because as soon as Pantene products regained their original prices, people stopped buying them. This fact led the company into huge financial trouble. Another similar example in my country is, Peruvian Airlines, an airline company which tried to gain market share by suddenly establishing lower prices than the multinational LAN. The multinational offered temporarily even lower prices that couldn’t be beaten by Peruvian Airlines. The company ended up almost in bankruptcy and their market share didn’t increase significantly in the long term. The argument would have been much solid if it explicitly gave examples of the strategy behind lower prices.

Second, the argument attributes the decrease of The Mercury’s circulation mainly to the appearance of the lower-priced competitor. It thus suggests that he only reason why people aren’t buying The Mercury is the price. This is again an unsupported claim as the argument does not demonstrate any correlation between significant price markdowns and the increase of the newspaper’s circulation. In addition, if the argument provided evidence that no other factor played an important part on the circulation decrease; the argument could have been strengthened even further.

Finally, the argument concludes that by increasing circulation of The Mercury, more businesses will be automatically attracted to buy advertising space in the paper. From this statement again, it is not at all clear why more businesses would certainly buy the advertising space on a cheaper newspaper. Without supporting evidence and a clear strategy of how the company plans to face lower income, one is left with the impression that the claim is more of a guess rather than substantial evidence.

In conclusion, the argument is flawed for the above mentioned reasons and is therefore unconvincing. In order to assess the merits of a certain situation, it is essential to have full knowledge of all contributing factors. Without this information, the argument remains unsubstantial and open to debate.

Thanks again!!
Re: Pls rate my GMAT essay(Kaplan)   [#permalink] 22 Sep 2014, 18:39
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