Most of the IIMs are of the opinion that Group Discussions generally proved ‘might is right’. With a view to offer equitable platform for the management aspirants for demonstrating their communication ability, some institutions now follow WAT or Writing Ability Test as the criteria for selection. The fact is that essay writing has become one of the important processes for admission and this task carries a minimum weightage of 30% for the final selection of candidates. WAT test is actually considered for replacement to group discussion by the new IIMs established in the year 2016 along with some old institutes.
What is the purpose of WAT?
As the name of the test suggests, the written skill of candidates is assessed by this test through essay writing. However, this is not a simple task as is believed by many aspiring candidates. The reason is that they will have to write the essay with tough time constraints. The applicants for IIM, Bangalore will be somewhat lucky in this regard as against those applying for IIM, Ahmadabad. The reason is that the former gives a time of 30 minutes for the test takers to put their thoughts into words, while the latter allows just 10 minutes. So, it becomes important for the test takers to sharpen their time management and written skills during the preparation process.
Different skills are evaluated:
The essay written by the aspirants will give the admission panel an invaluable insight about the mind of applicants. Even, some B-schools take essay writing as the yardstick for accessing skills like argument, structure, focus, logic and clarity of applicants. These skills are to be presented in as short as 10 minutes. Here are some tips to prepare for this test:
Expanding the knowledge base:
The initial step to be taken by the applicants when preparing for the admission process is to expand their knowledge base. It is important that they should be well-aware of their subject and they should keep themselves updated with the current affairs. This will provide them with substantial information on the topic they are given for writing.
To effectively communicate their knowledge base, it is important that candidates should have good written skills. So, during the practice test, they will have to write essays repeatedly on current affairs, which will play a major role towards boosting their level of confidence and also their language and vocabulary. Some candidates will have knowledge, but they can showcase the knowledge only when they have good written skills.
Regardless of whether a candidate has adequate knowledge on the given topic or not, it is important that he/she should give the best structure to the essay to make it presentable. They should give the details with logical flow and even though, the examiners do not expect the candidates to know everything under the sky, they just look for how the candidate has presented in the little known information in a meticulous manner. A good structure will also showcase the clarity of thoughts, which is highly important for MBA aspirants.
As a final word, in addition to the above-mentioned tips, it is important that candidates must learn time management skill to provide the known information within the short time.