Writing an exam response

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key things to remember

There are 2 key things to remember when writing about an extract;

foucs immediately and be specific

develop your points with detail

For example , in your first paragraph focus on a key aspect of the writers methods. Dont waste time with general comments of plot summary

IN THE OPENING TO THIS EXRTRACT TNE AUTHOR USES THE DEVICE OF....TO....

In your second paragraphy introduce firther ideas or develop in more detail your first point.

THIS TECHNIQUE IS ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT AS IT ALLOWS US AS READERS TO HAVE SOME IDEA WHAT IT ABOUT TO OCCUR BUT ALSO SHOWS THAT AMIR TELLING THE STORY FROM AFTER THE EVENT IS REACHING THE HEART OF THE STORY.

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Responding to a general question

Alternatively you may be asked to write about a specific aspect of the novel- but as it relates to the whole text.

EG-What significance do journeys have in the kite runner as a whole?

1)Focus on journeys specifically(not other things) and in plural sense (not just once)

2) Explain their significance why in your opinion are they important

3) Look at the whole text not just one chapter or extract

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Structuring your response

You need a clear logical plan as for all tasks that you do. It is impossible to write about every section or part of the text, so you will need to;

1) Quickly note down five or six key points or aspects to build your essay around

2)Then decide the most effecive logical order. You could begin with the main idea with supporting evidence and references followed  by firther points.

3) For your conclusion use a compelling way to finish perhaps repeating the key words of the question.

Your final point but with an additional last clause which makes it clear what you think is key to the question. A new quotation or aspect thats slightly differently from the main point.

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Questions with statements- Quotations or viewpoint

Another type of question you may come across is one that includes a statement quotation or viewpoint from another reader.

These questions ask you to repsond to or argue a specific point of veiw or a critical interprtation

The key thing to remember is that you are being asked to respond to a critical interpretation of the text in other words to come up with your own take on the idea or viewpoint in the task

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