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Marking Scheme: GAMSAT Section 2

The following is based solely on information provided by ACER and analysis of ACER’s official GAMSAT preparation material. That material is available here( and also available via some references at the bottom of the page.

GAMSAT section 2 is Written Communication. In this section you have 1 hour to write two essays, annotated task A and task B. For each essay you will be provided with 5 quotes which share a common theme. You may use any number of these as the basis or inspiration for your essay.

The instruction is as follows:

Consider the following comments and develop a piece of writing in response to one or more of them. Your writing will be judged on the quality of your response to the theme; how well you organise and present your point of view. and how effectively you express yourself.
You will not be judged on the views or attitudes you express.

What you get marks for:

Quality of response

  • Depth of thought demonstrated in your response

  • Shown understanding of both explicit and implicit meaning in the quotes

  • Critical analysis of information and issues presented

  • Development of your own ideas & arguments

  • Validity of your statements and your awareness thereof


  • How easy it is for the reader to follow your line of reasoning

  • Purposefulness of organisation – each sentence has a reason for being there.


  • Use of paragraphs

  • Legibility, spelling, punctuation

  • Length of sentences, use of conjunctions.

  • Use of quotes

Clarity of expression

  • absence of ambiguity in statements
  • grammar and punctuation


What you don’t get marks for:

Your attitudes

  • Your opinion is not important, it’s how you communicate it that counts.


  • The GAMSAT is not a test of knowledge, and section 2 is no exception. You won’t get extra marks for including lots relevant ‘facts’.

The intensity of your feels

  • Although task B is often referred to as the ’emotional’ essay, don’t fall into the trap of being overly dramatic. You don’t get points for simply feeling strongly about something.

Length of the essay

  • It should only be long enough to acomplish what you set out to say. If you can say something as clearly and effectively in less words then do it. It saves you time and it saves them time. Short sentences are easier to read.

Breadth of ideas

  • ACER asks for depth, not breadth. Don’t inundate them with ideas. Just show that youve thought about a small number of them deeply. You don’t have enough time to talk about everything. Also beware of broad overarching generalisations, no matter how much empirical evidence you can cite to support your claims.