Exam Techniques

Exam Techniques

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  • Created on: 11-06-12 15:22
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Question types
Short questions (Units 3 and 4)
AO1 = 5 marks
AO2 = 7 marks
AO3 = 3 marks
Total = 15 marks
Focus of questions:
· Questions will have a narrower or more specific focus than essay questions. Questions will not be
· Questions will require candidates to do more than describe or just present information. The main
intellectual skills assessed (AO2) will be analysis, evaluation by importance, and the identification of
similarities and differences. Debate and discussion questions will be rare, but candidates may be asked to
explain particular political viewpoints or arguments.
· Questions will not require essaystyle responses (introductionargumentconclusion), although clarity
and coherence in presentation will be rewarded via AO3 marks.
Essay questions (Units 3 and 4)
AO1 = 12 marks
AO2 = 24 marks
Synopticity = 12 marks
AO3 = 9 marks
Total = 45 marks
Focus of questions:
· Questions will have a discursive nature, in that they may permit two or more legitimate answers, allowing
synopticity to be assessed. As there will be no 'right' or 'wrong' response, candidates will be rewarded for the
knowledge and skills they deploy in supporting their chosen conclusion.
· Questions will primarily test the AO2 skill of evaluation. No questions will require only analysis or the
identification of parallels, similarities and differences.
Answers should have a beginning (introduction), a middle (argument) and an end (conclusion)

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Introductions should:
define key terms used in the question
show an understanding of 'the point' of the question (the issue or issues it raises)
(optional) outline the line of argument to be adopted, possibly indicating the conclusion favoured
Arguments should:
Make points in a logically related order
Consider contrasting viewpoints or positions as appropriate (for/against, advantages/disadvantages,
benefits/drawbacks, etc)
Support points with appropriate evidence (make a point and prove it)
Qualify points wherever appropriate (make a point and qualify it ­ 'However ...…read more


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