Graduate Writing Exam FAQs

Graduate Writing Exam FAQs

If you do not see your question answered here, please consult your department's administrator, or send your question to, and we'll do our best to answer it quickly!

  • Q: What are the possible scores on the Graduate Writing Exam?
  • A: There are two possible results of the Graduate Writing Exam: pass or not pass. A passing score is 80 or above. Students who receive a score below 80 are recommended to take an IAP writing workshop.

  • Q: What if I am unable to take the online Graduate Writing Exam?
  • A: If you are unable to take the online Graduate Writing Exam over the summer, you must take the pencil-and-paper make-up exam in September.

  • Q: How do I know if I need to take the Graduate Writing Exam?
  • A: Your department administrator will notify you if you are required to take the Graduate Writing Exam.

  • Q: I have other commitments during the week of the graduate writing exam. Will the exam take the entire six days?
  • A: No. We expect that carefully reading the articles will take about 2-3 hours during the first 3-day period, and that writing the essay will take another 4-7 hours during the second 3-day period. We allow multiple days for the reading and writing because we know that people have other commitments during that time, and to allow time for a complete writing process, including reflection and revision.

  • Q: How do I get my results?
  • A: Once the Graduate Writing Exams are scored, the results will be sent to your graduate administrator; he or she will then give you your result.

  • Q: Can I use a computer at my local library/internet cafe to take the Online Graduate Writing Exam?
  • A: Yes!