Jump to content

Review GRE Argument Essay


Recommended Posts

Hello all,

 Any feedback you have on the following essay would be helpful. Hoping to reach a 5.5 by test day.

I am also willing to review essays!


The following appeared in a memo from the director of student housing at Buckingham College.

"To serve the housing needs of our students, Buckingham College should build a number of new dormitories. Buckingham's enrollment is growing and, based on current trends, will double over the next 50 years, thus making existing dormitory space inadequate. Moreover, the average rent for an apartment in our town has risen in recent years. Consequently, students will find it increasingly difficult to afford off-campus housing. Finally, attractive new dormitories would make prospective students more likely to enroll at Buckingham."

Write a response in which you discuss what specific evidence is needed to evaluate the argument and explain how the evidence would weaken or strengthen the argument.


The director of student housing at Buckingham College is proposing an increase in the number of dormitories to accommodate student growth. It is certainly necessary and beneficial if this is the case; however, the proposal leaves out crucial data, such as current housing available versus student growth. Furthermore, the director outlines other benefits to building new dorms, such as providing student with affordable housing and beautifying the campus, but gives little specific data to substantiate their claims. 

The first glaring omission in the opinion is the assumption that current growth trends will hold. To successfully illustrate their point, clarification is needed in what is meant by current trends, and why it is projected it will hold over fifty years. If “current trends” is only statistics taken over the last few years, it surely wouldn’t be able to accurately predict projections over fifty years. 50 years is a substantial length of time and making competent predictions may not hold, which would place the heavy investment of new dormitories at risk. A more conservative solution make decisions for the next ten to twenty years to minimize unintended consequences. Either way, the author needs to clearly outline how current trends reflect the potential for a doubling over the next fifty years.

In addition to supplying this information, more specifics must be made known on rising rent in the town since it is a major component of the writer’s position. The claim is made that “the average rent for an apartment has risen over recent years,” but how much rent has risen has not been given. This brings up follow up questions: What is the rise of rent in comparison with inflation? Will the trend in rising rent continue? And how will this compare to the price of living in a new dormitory, which are expensive to build?   If rent is rising concurrently with inflation, then the consequences of this expansion in price is nearly negligible. If it is extensively more, than of course finding solutions for cheaper rent would be positive for the student. This information is necessary, along with answering the other questions I’ve posed, for the reader to make a judicious decision on whether building new dormitories is worth the investment based off this point.

Along with comparisons of rent, the director needs to make a cost benefit analysis of how new dormitories would benefit the college. While it is more than likely that prospective students would find the new buildings appealing, it may not need to enough of a increase in enrollment to justify their cost. A prediction of the cost of new dorms need to be made based off how many may be needed, and then a assessment should be made of how many new students this could bring in. An imperical comparison to other college’s which have made a similar decision could greatly increase the appeal of the request, depending on the outcome of the study. But if after the study of similar college’s it is found that it does not necessarily bring an increase an enrollment, than new dormitories may not be beneficial, at least in that component of the argument.

Since adding new building on campus is an important decision that will have a great impact on the future of Buckingham college, as much detailed information is needed for the administrative to make an astute decision on the investment. More information on the student enrollment prediction, the rise in rent, and a cost benefit analysis of dorm building would all contribute to a more holistic decision and allow the reader to weigh strengths versus weaknesses of the director’s proposition. 


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...

Important Information

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. See our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use