Ensure your entry to a top B-school, get hold on Essay Writing

The coming New Year is going to be a critical year for all MBA aspirants. From the first month itself you will have to shift your focus away from the regular Quant, Verbal, Data Interpretation and Reasoning to Current Affairs and General Knowledge.

A strong hold over these will help you achieve success on your path to your dream MBA. GK and current affairs are the core of the next round of admissions process, after the test results are declared. And the next round we are talking about are the Essay Writing, GD and PI rounds.

IIFT has recently declared the names of the candidates shortlisted for Essay Writing, GD and PI, which will be held in January 2011. When the CAT 2010 results are declared on January 12, 2011, the IIMs too will call the candidates to appear in the GD PI and Essay Writing rounds from February.

Essay writing will be a key criteria for admissions in leading B-schools, including IIMs. For instance, IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Bangalore, IIM Lucknow, IIM Kozhikode and IIFT conduct Essay Writing along with GD PI.

Hence, it is important that you have good awareness about the patterns of Essay Writing and how to prepare and practice for perfect essay writing. MBAUniverse.com brings to you expert advice from Ms. Jaya Desai, Product Manager, IMS Learning.

“The general notion about writing an essay is to organize it according to the word limit, structure it into paragraphs and make it worth reading, all in the given time limit,” says Jaya.

Read further to know how to write a perfect essay:

Preparing for Essay Writing

Read a variety of topics
The range of subject matter has to be wide, right from economics, business and the economy to politics, sociology, psychology and philosophy.

The sources can comprise editorials, magazines of general and business related issues, free resources/excerpts on the internet, international media and books by renowned authors, thinkers and analysts.

“Nothing is taboo or boring. You must combine reading fiction with a lot of non-fiction. The beauty about non-fiction is you can read independent chapters/articles /write-ups, unlike fiction where you may have to read the novel in entirety as the unfolding plot have a connection with the earlier chapters,” says Jaya.

Rumination
After you read something, you must spend time developing a perspective on the same; look for contrarian views on the same; learn more about key elements-chew the cud, so to speak. This helps you write effectively. “Mere reading will not help you write,” cautions Jaya.

Practice
Writing regularly helps the brain ideate easily. It is as simple as that. “You will realize what you are good at, where you flounder, what mistakes occur with respect to usage and this will not only make you confident for D day but write effortlessly,” mentions Jaya.

The methodology for writing a good essay:
— Read the topic carefully and determine what you have been asked to write: Are you expected to present the pros and cons of a particular issue? Are you expected to present an analytical piece? Are you required to write an argumentative essay or come up with different perspectives vis-a-vis an abstract topic?

Now reorganize thoughts into the three section format:
— A terrific introduction: Employ a quote, (only if it is relevant) or a generic observation pertaining to the topic at hand. 
— Supporting ideas: This effectively is the body of the essay that is generally fleshed out over two or three small paragraphs. You can move from one paragraph to other by means of connectives such as ‘Furthermore’, ‘Moreover’ or ‘To illustrate’ etc. If you wish to present a deviation from the main line of thought or state an exception, you can use words like ‘ however’, ‘but’ etc.
— Conclusion: Wrap up the text with a fitting finale, using connectives such as ‘ In conclusion’, ‘Hence’ or ‘Thus’. Otherwise, however well written the essay, it will hang and have an unfinished feel to it.

Important checklist
— Cogency and coherence: The essay should have a smooth flow of thought and maintain relevance at all times. Moving back and forth will have a stilted effect. 
— Sentence structure: The word choice and construction of sentences should be apt and concise. Certain principles of grammar and usage must be adhered to.
— Proofreading: Spelling and grammatical errors should be strictly avoided.

Stay tuned to MBAUniverse.com for more expert advice on Essay Writing!

MBAUniverse.com is one of India’s most comprehensive MBA portals. MBAUniverse.com was set up in 2006 to address the information asymmetry in the management education and practice domain.

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