GAMSAT Section 2 Strategies

From: Kim
Re: GAMSAT Section 2 Strategies

gamsat section 2 strategies

1. Practice

Writing is a skill that is developed over time. With practice, your brain becomes more accustomed to formulating and articulating arguments under time pressure such that your writing skills improve. Do not leave section 2 until the week before!

2. Read widely

Given the multitude of possible themes for section 2, it is important that you build your knowledge base. Read about a variety of topics ranging from politics to global warming to fiction novels to ensure that you have a large bank of ideas to fall back on.

3. Plan your essay

Before you start writing, decide upon a thesis for your essay and plan the content of your paragraphs. This will prevent you from any nervous waffling that could confuse your reader and lower your GAMSAT score.

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4. Use a title

Better yet, utilise a captivating title. Let the reader know that you’ve correctly identified the theme and that your essay will be more interesting than the thousands that they’ve read before yours.

5. Structure

A popular structure is introduction, argument, counterargument, synthesis and conclusion. However, any logical structure is fine provided that it assists the reader in understanding your essay. There is no gold standard. Simply choose one that works for you.

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6. Evidence

The best arguments are always backed by evidence. Each paragraph should have at least one example that demonstrates why a particular idea is correct. However, don’t waste your time memorising statistics. The fact that WWI started in 1914 rather than 1915 will not dramatically impact your essay.

7. Be succinct

One hour, two essays: there’s no time to waste. If you’ve made your argument and supported it with evidence, move on.

8. Grammar

Correct usage of grammar, punctuation and spelling is essential. Extensive errors are distracting for the reader and your GAMSAT score will suffer accordingly.

9. Write clearly

Ensure that your handwriting is legible. If it can’t be read, it can’t be marked. In any case, it’s good practice for when you get to write your own scripts!

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Some Commonly Asked GAMSAT Questions

What do I bring to the GAMSAT


Basically, the only items permitted into the GAMSAT exam are:

  • Printed GAMSAT admission ticket
  • Acceptable current and photo-bearing identification document
  • Pencils (medium soft No.2 or HV recommended)
  • Pencil sharpener
  • Pens (blue or black ink)
  • Eraser
  • A clear bottle of drinking water (no labels attached)
  • Those who are sitting the exam may also wear an analogue wristwatch but may not use any alarm or stopwatch feature as these must be switched off. Digital watched and smart are prohibited.

There will be clocks provided in the test room. All other items are prohibited and will be considered an act of misconduct.

These include:

  • Calculators
  • Stopwatches
  • Audio or recording devices of any kind
  • Digital watches
  • Smart watches
  • Note paper
  • Pencil cases
  • Rulers
  • Coloured pens/pencils
  • Highlighters

Personal items such as mobile phone, snacks etc will only be able to be accessed from your bag in your lunch break.
Candidates are encouraged to wear layers to adjust to temperature in the exam.

If you have a disability or a medical condition that might adhere to you sitting the test, you will need to apply for a Reasonable Adjustment through your online account.  Check out the ACER website for guidelines if you need to bring a bilingual dictionary.

How Difficult Is The GAMSAT ?

Those who have sat the exam previously would agree that yes, the exam can be quite difficult, however, there isn’t really an answer to the question as it will range from person to person! It will depend on your strengths and weaknesses and above all, how much you have prepared for the exam. For those whose strong points are not in writing, structuring an essay may be the most difficult and acquiring enough scientific knowledge for Section I might be more challenging for those who do not have a background in science.

The GAMSAT can be hard for others to stay awake for the 5 and half hour test. This is spread out over the whole day so it generally can take up to 9 hours all up. If you’ve never sat such a long test, this part may seem difficult to you.

For most, the actual STUDYING component for the GAMSAT is the most difficult part about getting into medical school and not the actual exam itself! If you would like an idea of how difficult the exam is, doing practice papers can give you a general idea.

Why Is The GAMSAT So Hard ?

There is no correct answer to this question. Different people will find aspects of the GAMSAT more difficult than others and some may find the whole experience more challenging.  For example, in Section I, there is a lot of reading, which may be the most stressful for those who are slow readers. Candidates are required to write two essays within an hour, which can seem somewhat difficult for those whose writing is not their strong points!

Graphs, diagrams, tables, text passages and a variety of other information is in Section III. Another way that the GAMSAT could be considered hard is that fact that the test is 5 and half hours. The GAMSAT can be hard for others to stay awake for the 5 and half hour test.

This is spread out over the whole day so it generally can take up to 9 hours all up. If you’ve never sat such a long test, this part may seem difficult to you.

Please note: all emotions, fear, doubt excitement, anxiety, determination are normal. To overcome these obstacles, there is really one thing that will help the most: practice!

How Does The GAMSAT Work ?

The Graduate Medical School Admissions Test or the GAMSAT is prerequisite test run by ACER for the admission into dental and medical schools.It is designed to evaluate students abilities and skills through the use of concepts in basic science and general skills in problem solving, critical thinking and writing.The test is offered twice a year in March and September in Australia, UK, Ireland and selected international locations.

Those sitting the GAMSAT are encouraged to begin studying a few months prior to the exam and to practice as many tests as possible!