Paper 2. Question 3. Examiner Tips.

Standard
  • Though this question is called Summary it is not a summary in the sense of being a general description of a situation but instead it is a focused list of the specific ideas or details contained in the passage, after anything irrelevant to the two questions has been removed. • Find all the points you can for each part of the question; do not stop when you get to 15 as these may not be the same ones the examiner has on their list. The only way to be sure of getting all 15 Reading marks is to use everything relevant.
  • To get all 5 Writing marks you need to show evidence of clear and concise summary style throughout, precise focus and the use of your own words.
  • Do not attempt to synthesise the two passages as this is not required, is not rewarded; it makes your task more difficult to attempt to do so as they may not be directly comparable. Treat the passages separately and focus on the exact wording of the question.
  • Do not give your summary in the wrong form as this is penalised i.e. do not offer bullet points or a list, or write in the first person, or comment on the content of the passages, or present a narrative, or use quotation.
  • The lengths of the summaries of each passage should be roughly equal.
  • Though you must use your own words whenever possible, you do not have to find synonyms for technical objects e.g. solar heaters.
  • Both halves of the question are equally important and should be done in the same way and given the same length of about half a page.
  • Summaries much longer than half a page are no longer summaries and will be penalised in the Writing mark.
  • To be concise enough for summary style and to get in all the points you should use complex sentences containing two or three points in each.
  • Do not repeat points, or express them vaguely; (these will be given an R (repetition) or PNM (point not made) respectively in the margin, and discounted.
  • There is no need to introduce or conclude a summary, and doing so wastes time and words. Start by using the wording of part of the question e.g. ‘The features of the desert were…’
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