Evaluation Criteria of a Group Discussion



A group discussion is the foremost way of judging the suitability of a candidate. Be it ascertaining a seat in a leading institution or finding a berth in a reputed organization, you cannot overrule its importance. Although you need to train yourself for every probable situation that may arise on the scene, there are certain specific areas that form the key to your success in the test assemblage. These are the fundamental yardsticks that are actually employed on paper to assess your contention. Mastering them with heart, while still having a strong grasp of the other vital aspects of a GD - will make you invincible in the upcoming fixtures.


Critical Evaluation Areas in a GD


To know how to prep up for these crucial team meetings, you first need to understand the marking pattern of a GD. Not all institutes disclose their evaluation criteria, and there is a lot of variation in the assessment model and the review indices among the different B-schools all over the world, so that, it is practically infeasible to arrive at a standard that fits all. But, there are certain points common to each of these tests. So, what are those decisive areas you should particularly pay attention to? Well, you should scroll below to see those points unfold.


Evaluation Criteria of a Group Discussion


Your Dressing Sense


How you dress up has a huge bearing on how people perceive you. Some organizations provide a degree of leeway in their dress code as a modish way to recognize personal freedom. If you have not been specifically communicated about the dress code, you should opt for a moderately to strictly formal garbing. Do ensure that you don’t look obscene or awkward. Else, your earning point may turn into the primary weak link.


Introducing the Topic


It is said that well begun is half done. So, the person who initiates the topic always gets an upper hand in comparison to his fellow competitors. Starting a discussion or proceedings is always looked upon as an inherent leadership skill which is essential to survive in an industry or institution. The person who takes the first lead has the advantage of making his first impression in front of the assessment panel. Try to cash upon this early bounty.


Presentation Skills


When you walk in for a group meeting, you not just have to convey your ideas, but also present your whole self to the audience. Putting your opinion in a convincing manner makes the group members appreciate your view and makes them pay attention to your thought process. If you are presentable, you will win hearts in a conversation and also win the contest in the bargain. So next time whenever you are planning to meet a fixture, prepare in advance. Give due respect and industry to your style, accent, facial expression and your body gesture to make the final cut.


Self Confidence


Do you hesitate or stutter in putting forward your thoughts? Or, do you lack that aplomb to support and propagate your stance? If yes, then it’s a big red signal for you. You are almost never going to flourish in a precarious environment as the markets command today. When you lack confidence, you not only tend to lose track of your thought process, you also behave in a clumsy and unattractive way. Nervousness can easily be won with live practice and mental control techniques. Please, help yourself on this criterion before you get allotted a zero mark by the evaluation committee.


Listening Skills


Paying attention to others is of equal importance to expressing yourself to others. The judges watch closely the whole proceedings to analyze if you are sincerely following and enriching the discussion. If you are inattentive, you miss the significant part of the communication, and are liable to add little value to the topic. If you don’t scrutinize or approve your fellow debaters, chances are, you are not following them at all, which is noticed by the onlookers, and the result is a punitive marking. To protect yourself from the whip, listen carefully to other participants and jot down your concerning arguments on a sheet of paper.


Communication Skills


Communication is one of the basic modes of connection between people. Both spoken and sign language amalgamate to form an effective blend of a resourceful speech. Your language skills need not be immaculate, but it needs to be decent, at least, to be able to portray your ideas in an efficient manner. Fluency is a key aspect here, meaning, you should be able to complete your discourse with least possible breaks or unnecessary pauses. Your facial expression should support and enhance your words. Your attitude should be positive and you should be able to read and adjust to the mindset of the audience.


Body Language


Body language forms the chief basis of a non verbal communique. Ignoring this element overrides all the diligent and persistent exertion applied by a candidate towards the preparation for a group chat. A positive body posture with straight back and a slightly tilted head is desirable. Appropriately mild facial expression along with a pinch of effectual eye connect depicts your maturity and guts. Don’t express anger or apathy as they are perceived as negative emotions. Don’t be over excited or euphoric. Display dignity and firmness.



Team Spirit


Graceful group behavior requires coherent devotion towards a common cause. It is advisable to approve and recognize a welcome idea with judicious appreciation, and mildly disagree with a poppy-cock notion in a conversation. Never overreact or dramatize an error, but try to reach to a consensus by recognizing the best propositions towards a shared theme. By the time you walk out, your topic must completely be dealt with, and your peers must regard you as a pal.


Competence and Zeal


The people who follow their passion are most likely to succeed in the long run. The judges’ panel is eager to know how much enthusiasm is ingrained into your stature. The hunger to triumph over the hurdles is also tested in a formal chit-chat where you counter your opponents’ views and promote your own beliefs. The more competence you show in such ambiance, the more fit you are deemed to be in a real life scenario. That said, too much of anything is hazardous. Don’t head towards heated encounters and lose your cool. Be graceful in conveying your message to your peers.


Presence of Mind


Being alert and proactive makes your venture a fruitful one. At one or more times, you get stuck or encounter a deadlock amidst your GD. This is the time to use your common sense and take stock of the situation at hand. The way you conduct under these constrains is clearly visible to the audience, and you get rewarded with extra points in your kitty. Your reaction time and accuracy of thought process are of immense importance here.


Persuasive Skills


A group discussion is a great place to showcase and retest your persuasive might. Your means and techniques to convince others is a vital judging space for the examiners. It is all about how you move about in a conversation and make your peers believe and approve your theory. While persuading others, it is important not to indulge in a tall talk or frivolous assumptions or it may mar your overall performance. In case, you are not entertained, keep cool and maintain your composure. Wait for another opportunity or grab the one that comes along.


General Awareness


Being aware of the happenings around you and the globe is another bright side of a suitable candidature. The committee supervising the meeting wants to know your grasp on the current affairs of your sphere. It also wants to know the amount of knowledge you command over the subject or stream you aspire to pursue a career in. So, make yourself acquainted with the common terms and concepts concerning your realm. Also, keep an eye upon the day to day incidents affecting the global ambiance.


Ethics and etiquette


Your conduct, both in and out of the test premises, also forms a mandatory element of the quality checklist for the GD organizers today. They want to sneak into your moral fiber to ascertain that you last long enough to contribute significantly to the society maintaining, at the same time, a clear and blot-free image for yourself and the institution. Your overall first-rate behavior, self respect and respect for others makes you a lucrative future prospect for the organizations.


Concluding the GD


After a lot of hue and cry, you want to afford a summarizing end to the debate, which is after all, the basic motto of such an endeavor. Concluding successfully within the given time frame earns a thumbs-up point for all the team members. It displays your commitment to adhere to the timeline, your punctuality and your result oriented approach towards a problem. The conclusion must be brief and comprehensive. Try to close up the GD, if you missed the opportunity to start if off.

Now, if you have been reading through and paying attention, it should be crystal clear that a big pile of possible glitches are there to pop up and disrupt your odds in a group discussion. But instead of being skeptical and weary of preparation, you should note that most of them are inter-related, and that it is not entirely impractical to adjust and train yourself for the contest. Just treat them positively, and regard them as positive earning points rather than blockages in your way. You are going to find that as nothing is impossible in the world, so is winning a GD - merely a ploy of the attitude you possess.