GAMSAT Essays – Get Emotional in Task B

gamsat essays

When writing Task B GAMSAT essays, it is important to bring more emotional elements to your writing in 3 key ways…

1. Focus on the emotional aspects of people

Task B GAMSAT essays are focused on socio-cultural topics, which requires you to keep people and human nature at the forefront of your mind. You should practice doing this as soon as you begin the process of interpreting the presented GAMSAT quotes. Consider the emotions people experience in certain situations and circumstances, and how those emotions drive their behaviour and their interactions with others – in relationships and in society generally. Consider how the essence of the quote you choose to write on is lived out in people’s lives and the impact this has on society.

When your content is emotion-focused, your essay will have more impact.

2. Share your emotions

Sharing your emotions on paper can initially be a difficult task for students who have been conditioned to write academic essays in third person with a strong focus on evidence rather than opinion. But in order to write a powerful essay that connects with the marker, you must reflect on how particular situations or circumstances effect (or have previously effected you) emotionally and share this openly in your GAMSAT essays.

You don’t have to reveal your deepest, darkest secrets. But you do have to demonstrate your ability to assess the people and the world around you with a measure of wisdom and discernment, and personally reflect on the emotions and actions of yourself and others.

3. Target the emotions of the marker

Think about how you feel after you have watched a bland, boring movie that didn’t make you feel anything at all. The last thing you want is for the marker of your GAMSAT essay to feel absolutely nothing at the end of reading your essay. Your job is to move them emotionally! Make them laugh. Make them cry. Stir up anger in them. Arouse sympathy from them. Shock or surprise them.  Somehow move them!

How do you do this? Choose content for your essay that is emotionally impactful and choose language that is emotionally impactful. Tell a moving story. Share your emotions. Write with passion!

If you don’t have someone marking your practice GAMSAT essays to help you improve (which you definitely should), at the very least have a friend or family member read your practice Task B GAMSAT essays and ask them if they felt anything while they were reading it. Their response will give you some indication of whether you need to somewhat or significantly improve in this area.

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GAMSAT Quotes Interpretation – Wisdom

gamsat quotes

99% of the time interpreting GAMSAT quotes require you to pick a side and argue passionately for or against the essence of the quote…

Occasionally however, a quote is presented that has equally strong evidence on either side and fence-sitting may be a excellent option. An example of such a quote is: “The secret of life, though, is to fall seven times and to get up eight times.” ― Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist.

Under the theme of wisdom, this quote begs for automatic agreement. Your initial thought process is likely to be something along these lines… of course we have to get back up the 8th time and keep trying in order to eventually achieve success. This the essence of scientific research – conduct an experiment that fails, eliminate that as a possibility, then try another experiment until you pinpoint the answer you are searching for. If Dr Ian Frazer hadn’t got up the 8th time, we wouldn’t have the HPV vaccination. Thomas Edison tried more than 10,000 times to invent the light bulb. When asked about his failures, Edison stated that he knew “definitively over 9,000 ways that an electric light bulb will not work.”

Likewise, many entrepreneurs have an array of failed business attempts behind them before cracking through to success. Henry Ford founded two automotive companies that failed before he was gained success with the Ford Motor Company. Having launched more than 100 companies, not all of Sir Richard Branson’s businesses were a raging success either. It took Sir James Dyson 15 years to develop a bagless vacuum prototype that worked – he developed 5,126 prototypes that failed first. Before launching The Huffington Post, Arianna Huffington had a lot of trouble getting people to read her work – her book was rejected by 36 publishers.

There are plenty of examples you could use as evidence to support this quote.


This is one of those diamond GAMSAT quotes where there is much evidence to support the flip side of it as well…

Let’s reverse the wisdom of this quote and apply it to various situations in life where getting up and going back in for the 8th time is NOT the wisest choice. If you are at a casino gambling and you have lost 7 bets in a row, it’s probably better to walk away. If you are bidding against another determined party on a house at auction and they have significantly outbid you 7 times driving the price up ridiculously high, it’s probably better to walk away. If you are in a relationship and you have been let down by your partner cheating on you 7 times, it’s probably wiser  not to forgive them for an 8th time, rather just walk away.

As you can see, there are plenty of examples you could use as evidence to dispute this quote.

Rather than urging you to pick as side and argue passionately for it, for this particular GAMSAT quote I would recommend a thesis statement along the lines of…

“In life, wisdom involves deciding when when getting up and going back in for the 8th time is the wisest choice, and when it is definitely not.”

Good luck with your interpretation of GAMSAT quotes. 🙂

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