Time management

Last updated: 13 Oct 2008

As in other aspects of your life, managing your time in the AWA is absolutely essential.

To illustrate, let's take an example from another realm of our world, construction. You are given 6 months to construct a house and have it completed before winter.

Say you spent the whole 6 months making the foundation of the house the most secure and sound foundation imaginable. Great, but you spend so much time doing this you do not have time to finish the rest of the house within the time limit.

Should you be congratulated by friends and neighbours? Should your picture be put on the cover of Basements, Crawlspaces and Foundations Magazine? No, you did not finish the project on time, and one way or another you will be penalized for not using your time well.

Something like this is very common among test-takers in the AWA.

If you were to take too much time writing a brilliant opening paragraph but not have time to do a conclusion, then your score would indeed be very low

Another error would be to write as much as you can for 15 minutes, without truly pondering the issue or editing the essay after you write, and then move on quickly to the next essay or section.

Again, your score would suffer. The point is that you have to go in to the AWA with a clear idea of how you are going to use your time wisely.

Here are some rough guidelines on time management for each essay.

Brainstorm: 2-4 minutes
≈Take a couple of minutes to write down ideas and a rough outline of the organization of the essay on your noteboard.
Write: 22-25 minutes
Using what you have written in your Brainstorming session, start writing.
Edit: 2-3 minutes
Take a couple of minutes, just before the clock runs down, to review what you have written, checking for spelling and grammar errors, and that the essay flows well and that the arguments make sense and are understandable.

It is entirely up to you how you manage your time, whether you follow these guidelines or modify them to a great degree.

Whatever you do, though, remember to manage your time.

Next page: Brainstorming

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