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Delta Module One

Understanding language, methodology and resources for teaching

Examination Report June 2011

Contents 1 2 Comments on Overall Performance ............................................................................................... 4 Delta Module One Markscheme ..................................................................................................... 6 2.1 2.2 2.3 3 Distribution of marks .............................................................................................................. 6 Markscheme for each task ..................................................................................................... 6 Grading................................................................................................................................... 7

Paper 1 Task 1................................................................................................................................ 9 3.1 3.2 3.3 Guideline Answer ................................................................................................................... 9 Candidate performance.......................................................................................................... 9 Sample Answers .................................................................................................................. 10

Paper 1 Task 2.............................................................................................................................. 11 4.1 4.2 4.3 Guideline Answer ................................................................................................................. 11 Candidate performance........................................................................................................ 13 Sample Answers .................................................................................................................. 14

Paper 1 Task 3.............................................................................................................................. 17 5.1 5.2 5.3 Guideline Answer ................................................................................................................. 17 Candidate performance........................................................................................................ 18 Sample Answers .................................................................................................................. 18

Paper 1 Task 4.............................................................................................................................. 21 6.1 6.2 6.3 Guideline Answer ................................................................................................................. 21 Candidate performance........................................................................................................ 25 Sample Answers .................................................................................................................. 27

Paper 1 Task 5.............................................................................................................................. 33 7.1 7.2 7.3 Guideline Answer ................................................................................................................. 34 Candidate performance........................................................................................................ 35 Sample Answers .................................................................................................................. 37

Paper 2 Task 1.............................................................................................................................. 41 8.1 8.2 8.3 Guideline Answer ................................................................................................................. 41 Candidate performance........................................................................................................ 42 Sample Answers .................................................................................................................. 44

Paper 2 Task 2.............................................................................................................................. 47 9.1 9.2 9.3 Guideline Answer ................................................................................................................. 47 Candidate performance........................................................................................................ 47 Sample Answers .................................................................................................................. 50


Paper 2 Task 3.............................................................................................................................. 55 Guideline Answer ................................................................................................................. 55 Candidate performance........................................................................................................ 55 Sample Answers .................................................................................................................. 56

10.1 10.2 10.3 11

Paper 2 Task 4.............................................................................................................................. 59 Guideline Answer ................................................................................................................. 59 Candidate performance........................................................................................................ 61 Sample Answers .................................................................................................................. 62

11.1 11.2 11.3

1 Comments on Overall Performance The Delta Module One examination was taken by over 500 candidates from 55 centres in a wide range of countries. There continued to be considerable variation in pass rates at different centres but, at a large majority of centres, candidate mean scores were above half the marks available for the exam as they were for the candidature as a whole. The number of candidates who gained a Merit grade was slightly lower this session than in June 2010 at just under a quarter of the candidature but the Distinction rate was unchanged at just below 10%. Approximately 30% of the candidates did not obtain a Pass grade, which represents a slight increase from last June. As before, the most common reason for candidates failing is that they do not possess sufficient knowledge and experience to be able to address the different tasks and are therefore unable to perform at Delta standard. Several other factors, however, may contribute to a candidates failure to pass . Firstly, more candidates may be entering without taking a preparation course and so do not know what is required. Secondly, those candidates who do follow a course may receive inadequate or inaccurate centre guidance several of the Examiners commented on poor centre training affecting candidate performance. Thirdly, linked to the previous points, some candidates have clearly not read the previous Module One Examination reports in detail. These give clear guidance as to what candidates have to do in order to succeed in the examination. Fourthly, some candidates do not manage their time effectively and therefore do not make enough points. It should be noted that Task 4 in Papers One and Two and Task 5 in Paper One carry a large number of marks and if candidates leave inadequate time for these tasks, they increase the risk of failing the examination. With this in mind, candidates may be well advised to respond to the tasks out of order. There was very little difference in candidate performance over the two papers with the mean scores being almost the same. In Paper One, Task 1 scored slightly higher than last June but Task Two was lower as candidates struggled to define jigsaw reading, top-down processing and notional syllabus. Task 3 continued to score high and Task 4 scored the second highest since the introduction of the new scheme. In Task 5, candidates were presented with a spoken text to analyse for the first time and they coped well with this. The task scored the lowest it had done since the Module One examination was introduced but this was due largely to poor knowledge of phonology rather than an inability to identify strengths and weaknesses. As mentioned above, as in previous sessions, this task was done hastily by some candidates which also meant that they failed to gain good marks. In Paper Two, Task 1 generated similar marks to previous sessions and examiners commented that candidates appeared to be more confident in terms of how to approach the task. Task 2, part (a) scored high but this was balanced by part (b), where the majority of candidates struggled to identify more than 4 assumptions with well developed rationales. Candidate performance was the same in Task 3 but this contrasted with Task 4, where candidates scored the lowest since the introduction of the new examination, with the majority of candidates only achieving 22 out of a possible 40 marks. The examiners noted that many candidates struggled with the topic of dictation and also did not allow enough time to complete the task. Layout of answers shows improvement although weaker candidates continue to lay their answers out in a disorderly fashion and provide information not required in the rubrics. Please see each task for examiner comments on individual task performance.

General advice Candidates are strongly advised to do the following in order to maximise their performance in the examination: read the previous Examination Reports in detail to ensure that they understand how to approach each task make use of the suggested times given on the question papers to complete each task - the times relate to the number of marks available for the questions. Candidates are not penalised if they outline more features than asked for in Paper One, Tasks 3 and 5, and in Paper Two, Tasks 1 and 2b but they should note that this is a dangerous strategy as providing more features than asked for takes away time from other tasks. Adding one more feature in these tasks may be a useful safety net but doing more than this can jeopardise other tasks

read question rubrics very carefully, underlining or highlighting key points they contain. It is essential that candidates provide the information asked for and do not provide unrequested information. While no marks are deducted for wrong or irrelevant information, candidate time is wasted and no marks are gained by providing unrequested information follow the layout and formats of the guideline answers in this report. The use of bullet points and grids is quite acceptable. Using these can save time and add to the clarity of answers start each task on a new page and clearly label their answers, showing what task or part of a task they are answering lay their answers out with plenty of space candidates might find it easier to write their answers on every other line in the answer booklet. Many answers were cramped and written in the margins, making it very difficult for the Examiners to mark the tasks

Delta Module One Markscheme

2.1 Distribution of marks In Delta Module One, candidates accumulate marks across questions and it is the total number of marks obtained across the two papers that decides which grade a candidate is awarded. Candidates do not therefore gain a grade for each task. Answers are marked against a detailed markscheme containing guideline answers, with candidates being awarded marks for each correct answer given. The number of marks available for each task is as follows: Paper 1 Task 1 Task 2 Task 3 Task 4 Task 5 Total 6 12 15 40 27 100

Paper 2 Task 1 Task 2 Task 3 Task 4 Total 20 30 10 40 100

Grand Total


Points made twice within an answer are not credited twice and no marks are deducted for wrong answers. Please note that relevant alternative wordings and examples are accepted.


Markscheme for each task

Paper 1 Task 1 One mark is awarded for each correct answer. Paper 1 Task 2 A total of three marks are available per answer: one mark for the basic definition one mark for a further point made one mark for a correct example

Note: The further point is only awarded if the basic definition is correct; only one further point is allowed per question; the example can be awarded a point, even if the definition is not correct. Paper 1 Task 3 One mark is awarded for each language feature correctly identified. A further two marks are awarded for each correct example / illustration. An example cannot be awarded marks if the feature is not identified. Paper 1 Task 4 One mark is awarded for each point correctly made up to a maximum of 40. Note: in a, there is a maximum of five marks available and a mark is only awarded if a correct example is given. Paper 1 Task 5 a One mark is awarded for each strength correctly identified up to a maximum of three marks. One mark is awarded for each example from the text illustrating the strength identified, up to a maximum of three marks. One mark is awarded for each weakness correctly identified up to a maximum of three marks. One mark is awarded for each example from the text illustrating the weakness identified, up to a maximum of three marks. The 12 marks available for identifying and exemplifying strengths and weaknesses are weighted to 17 marks. In addition up to 4 additional marks are awarded for knowledge and insight into why and how the strengths and weaknesses aid or negate the effectiveness of the text. b

One mark is awarded for each justification given for the weakness prioritised, up to three marks.
One additional mark is awarded for each justification that is fully developed. Paper 2 Task 1 One mark is awarded for each positive / negative identified. An additional mark is awarded for each positive / negative identified if the application to the learner is also identified. Up to two additional marks are awarded for accurate use of four testing terms throughout the answer. However these additional marks cannot be awarded if more than two terms are used inaccurately and the use of the terms must occur in valid points. The 14 marks available are weighted to a total of 20 marks. Paper 2 Task 2 Two marks are awarded for each purpose correctly identified. One mark is awarded for each assumption listed. Up to two additional marks are awarded for each reason given for an assumption. Paper 2 Task 3 One mark is awarded for each correct point made, up to a maximum of 10. Paper 2 Task 4 Two marks are awarded for each correct point made, up to a maximum of 40. 2.3 Grading The purpose of grading is to determine candidates overall grades, based on the total score gained across the two papers. Results are recorded as three passing grades (Pass with Distinction, Pass with Merit, Pass) and one failing grade (Fail). At the end of the marking process, there is a grading meeting to determine precisely how many marks are required to obtain each of the passing grades. The grade boundaries are set in a way that ensures that the level of knowledge required to obtain the three passing grades: is consistent with the band descriptors on page 7 of the Delta Modules Handbook is the same from one session to the next does not vary as a result of slight variations in the difficulty of the papers

The following information is used in the grading process: statistics on the candidature comparison with statistics from previous years examination performance and candidature recommendations of examiners, based on the performance of candidates The marks required to obtain each grade are: Pass Pass with Merit Pass with Distinction approximately 50% approximately 65% approximately 75%

Paper 1 Task 1

Provide the term for each definition. Write your answers in your answer booklet. Provide only one answer per question. a a noun that is created by adding ing to the verb-stem (e.g. Parking is not permitted) b a database of real language samples (either spoken or written texts) stored on a computer and which can be used for investigating language use and structure c using the medium of English to teach a subject such as geography, natural science or history, to learners whose first language is not English d a consonant sound in which the air flow is initially stopped, but then is released slowly with friction, e.g. /t/ e the morphological process of adding a bound morpheme to the stem of a word, either at the end or at the beginning. This modifies the words meaning and/or changes its word class, e.g. adding ful to use or un to tidy f a type of test which is designed to show what language skills or knowledge a learner already has. It is often used by a teacher to find out how much a learner knows before beginning a language course


Guideline Answer gerund (language) corpus / corpora content and language integrated learning / CLIL / content-based teaching / content-based learning / content teaching (an) affricate / affricative affixation diagnostic (test)


Candidate performance

This question was reasonably well answered, with over half the cohort obtaining three or four marks but very few achieving full marks. All terms were identified with gerund and diagnostic test being the most frequently identified correctly although this depended on centre training as candidates from some centres were confused about the difference between diagnostic, proficiency and placement tests. The most problematic terms to identify were CLIL and affixation and some candidates confused affricative with fricative. The poor overall performance by candidates from some centres continues to suggest that either terminology is not integrated into their courses on a regular basis or that these candidates make a strategic decision not to study terminology. As was written in the examination report for June 2010, this is not a productive approach to examination preparation as knowledge of terminology is tested in Tasks One and Two and candidates can gain a maximum of 18 marks over the two tasks. Stronger answers simply gave the required term while weaker candidates either wrote down the wrong answer, mis-spelt the term (particularly corpora and affricative) or gave two answers, one correct and one incorrect, and so did not get a mark.

Candidates are recommended to: only write the required term, not giving an example or any extra information not provide alternative answers spell terms correctly; a very limited number of alternative spellings are accepted lay out their answers clearly as exemplified in the Guideline Answers

3.3 3.3.1 1 a. b. c. d. e. f.

Sample Answers The following sample answer gained full marks gerund corpora content based language teaching affricate affixation diagnostic test

Examiners comments on sample answers The candidates layout is clear and all the items are correctly identified and spelt. She has not wasted any time providing more than one answer per item.


The following sample answers gained 3 of the marks available for this task

b a corpus c CLIL or content-based language instruction d an affricate e affixation f placement or diagnostic test (needs analysis test?) A gerund or present participle Examiners comments on sample answers The candidates layout of the task was slightly confusing although she was not penalised for this. However, she lost half of the marks available for the task because she gave two answers for three of the items: in each case, one of them was correct and the other was not so no marks could be awarded.


Paper 1 Task 2

Provide a definition and an appropriate brief example or illustration for four of the terms below. Write your answers in your answer booklet. a jigsaw reading b de-lexicalised verb c top-down processing d intrusive /w/ e stative verb f notional syllabus


Guideline answer Jigsaw reading

Basic Definition An activity where learners read different texts/parts of texts and then exchange/compare/share the information they have read Further Point Often used in communicative language teaching/learning A task is used to encourage students to share the information they have Creates a communicative purpose for reading the text(s)/an information gap Allows for the integration of skills Example The same news item from different newspapers which learners compare / a story divided into parts learners exchange information to make sense of the whole

De-lexicalised verb

Basic Definition A verb with little or no (dictionary) meaning on its own / must combine with a noun or adjective to have meaning Further Point Performs a grammatical or collocational function Changes its meaning depending on its collocation High frequency / used in multiple contexts Forms the verb element in many multi-word expressions Can cause problems for learners when trying to translate from their L1 Example Take (your time) / get (married) / make (friends) / go (mad) / have (fun) / do (the housework) / give (money) / keep (a pet) / look (sad) / put (on a coat) (Verbs taken from M Lewis Implementing the Lexical Approach)


Top-down processing

Basic Definition using [either pre-existing] knowledge/information/experience [or of discourse or topic/culture/social norms] to understand (reading/listening) texts Further Point mention of activating schemata or schema theory contrast to bottom-up processing (where the reader is decoding the language itself) most researchers regard reading/listening as a combination of bottom-up and top-down processing modern coursebooks make use of/develop/practise top-down processing through visuals, prediction activities, etc. Example when reading a text about New York, the reader creates a mental picture/brainstorms/thinks of related ideas before reading the text e.g. yellow cabs, The Statue of Liberty, crowds of people / any valid example

Intrusive /w/

Basic Definition a linking sound /w/ that is inserted between a word which ends in a vowel sound and a following one which begins with a vowel sound Further Point eases the transition between words/a feature of connected speech a semi-vowel after the vowels // /u/ // /a/ (links final) rounded lip vowels (to following vowel) needs specifically teaching in some languages as students might add the wrong vowel e.g. French you /h/ are /it does not exist in some languages the other intrusive sounds which occur between two vowel sounds are /j/ and /r/ Example in the phrase go out /gwat/ or any other example with correct phonemic script Stative verb

Basic Definition a verb which is/can be used to describe a condition/state/belief/emotion/possession/sense. Further Point cannot be used to describe an action without changing the meaning of the verb it is not usually/normally used in the continuous tense contrast with dynamic/action verbs some verbs can be used with both state and dynamic meaning c.f. Im smelling the rose. It smells lovely Example I know its true / have a house / any appropriate example


Notional syllabus

Basic Definition a syllabus organised around (abstract) concepts/meanings/ideas AND the exponents used to express them Further Point associated with a communicative language syllabus/CLT often combined with functional syllabus / functional syllabus more common notions are similar to functions but more general in nature (telling the time vs. time) associated with Wilkins (1970s) Example headings in this syllabus would be: duration; location; degree; direction; the past; age; ability; possibility; permission; degree / any appropriate example 4.2 Candidate performance Candidate scores ranged widely on this task with 60% of the candidature obtaining 6 or more marks. However, overall candidate performance continued to decline on this task with this session being the second lowest that the task has scored since the new examination was introduced. There were several reasons for this: inaccurate definitions, particularly for top-down processing, jigsaw reading and delexicalised verb - imprecise definitions, particularly for intrusive /w/ and notional syllabus - lack of an example, particularly for jigsaw reading and top-down processing. Without a clear and full definition, candidates automatically lose 2 marks per question, one for the definition and one for the further point, which cannot be credited if the definition is incomplete. Candidates should therefore note that it is crucial to give a full definition. However, on a positive note, layout continued to be effective with the use of bullet points and sub-headings. Stronger candidates provided a correct definition, example and item of extra information about the term. They laid their answers out clearly, often using the sub-headings of definition, example, further point. Weaker candidates generally gave no extra information, were vague or imprecise in their definition and gained marks only by giving a correct example. They also tended to be too verbose in their answers. Some candidates still continued to ignore the rubric and answered six rather than four questions. Candidates should note that only the first four questions will be marked and it is therefore not a productive use of time to answer more than four questions. More specific points on content: a) jigsaw reading this term proved to be challenging for some candidates. Some confused jigsaw reading with information gap, so whilst their definition was quite generic and appeared to be appropriate, the example that they gave made it clear that they thought it meant an information gap. Others confused it with jumbled reading and said that students had to put cut up texts back in order. Others, described it as a gapfill exercise. Those who defined the term correctly were then generally able to get a further point for CLT. Others lost a mark for the example because they did not give an example of a specific activity but simply repeated the definition. b) de-lexicalised verb this was generally well answered although weaker candidates confused delexicalised verbs with auxiliary verbs. Most candidates got marks for the definition and example. c) top-down processing this was another difficult term for candidates to define. Whilst most candidates seemed to know the term, many did not know exactly what the strategy involved. They frequently gave examples of tasks which were reading for gist or they thought that top-down processing was the same as prediction. In some cases, it appeared as if these might be centre induced errors as all the candidates gave the same inaccurate definition. Those candidates who did provide an accurate definition generally got the further point of its opposite being bottom-up processing. As with jigsaw reading, a number of candidates lost a mark for the example because they did not give an explicit example of an activity which involved top-down processing.

d) intrusive /w/ this was well answered on the whole, although some candidates were not specific enough with the definition as they did not say that an intrusive /w/ sound occurs between two vowel sounds but that it simply occurs between sounds. Examples were generally good and candidates mentioned other intrusive sounds to gain the further point. e) stative verb this was the term which was most easily identified with good examples, and the contrast with action verbs gave a high number of further points. Some candidates were too specific, saying that state verbs were only about emotions, and others missed out on a further point by saying that they cannot be used in the continuous form rather than that they usually cannot be used in the continuous form. f) notional syllabus this was the least well-answered. Many candidates thought that this was synonymous with a functional syllabus. Others could not come up with a synonym for notions and used topics or themes instead, rather than concepts. The examples of notions were not usually accurate and were often topics or functions. Candidates are recommended to: only write about four terms give a basic definition, an example and one item of further information for each term lay their answers out clearly, using bullet points and sub-headings, as exemplified in the Guideline Answer 4.3 4.3.1 Sample Answers The following answers gained full marks for these definitions

2 b) a de-lexicalised verb is a verb which, in isolation, has very little meaning, or whose meaning is very vague. It generally expresses meaning by being used in other phrases in combination with other words e.g. get de-lexicalised verbs may be part of many phrasal verbs students may have trouble with de-lexicalised verbs especially when looking them up in a dictionary because the entries are so long and complex. c) top-down processing is under using contextual clues, previous knowledge, expectations etc. to understand a reading or listening text. e.g. because you know the script for what is usually said at a restaurant, you use this knowledge to understand the transaction without listening to every individual word. top-down processing is contrasted with bottom-up processing. d) intrusive /w/ is a /w/ phoneme inserted between two vowel sounds in connected speech, when the first of the vowel sounds is a back unrounded vowel e.g. two apples /tu/ /plz/ becomes /tuplz/ the other sounds that can be intrusive are /j/and /r/ intrusive /w/ is used after /u/ // /W/ and /a/ e) a stative verb is a verb which describes an ongoing state rather than an action. It cannot be used in the continuous aspect. e.g. to believe stative verbs often describe emotions, thoughts or properties of objects stative verbs are contrasted with dynamic verbs some verbs can be stative or dynamic with a change in meaning.

Examiners comments on sample answers All these answers are concisely expressed but contain the three essential ingredients of an accurate definition, example and further point. It would be helpful if the candidate labelled the different parts of her answer using the sub-headings of definition, further point, example to guide the examiner.

4.3.2 The following sample answers gained three quarters of the marks available for this task 2 b) a verb with a wide variety of meanings, often unconnected. These verbs are very common in English. e.g. take a rest take your time, take get home = arrive, get angry = become, Where did you get it? = obtain.
previously acquired

c) The way in which meaning is understood by applying V knowledge beyond purely linguistic knowledge e.g. knowledge of context, body language, sche etc often known a schemata: Are you the lobster or the chicken? has little meaning if understood word for word but if the listener knows it is set in a restaurant and spoken by a waiter, who is likely to be serving food, then the meaning becomes clear. d) the phoneme /w/ appearing to link two words, neither of which have this phoneme. Often appears between /u/ at the end of a word and // at the beginning of the next e.g. two/w/apples. e) a verb which describes a state as opposed to an action. These verbs rarely take a progressive form. e.g I have two brothers compared to I am having a shower.

Examiners comments on sample answers The candidate got one mark for the example of a de-lexicalised verb; three marks for top-down processing; one mark for the example of an intrusive /w/ and three marks for stative verb. The candidates definition of a de-lexicalised verb was wrong, i.e. they have a wide variety of meanings, and imprecise for intrusive /w/ because there is no mention of it occurring between two vowel sounds.

4.3.3 The following sample answers were awarded few marks 2 a. jigsaw reading is a communicative activity in which Ss work in pair or groups. Each pair/group has different versions of the same text and they need to make the use of genuine communication in order to complete the puzzle. It comes from CLT. e.g. Ss read different accounts of the same story and have to decide who is to blame. b. de-lexicalised verbs are verbs which do not carry lots of meaning themselves. Their meaning is normally achieved by the second word like in take a shower
de-lexical verb meaning carrier

Other examples are: Have, get, do, make


c. Top-down processing means approaching a text like you were looking from the top to get the general idea (gist). Opposed to Bottom-up processing where the focus is on specific information c. (continues) E.g. Ss are given a newspaper article and are asked the question Whats the article about? They will skim through looking at pictures/headlines and key words in the text. e. Stative verb is a verb which is not considered a movement verb. Opposed to dynamic verb. E.g. believe, know, like etc... Some verbs can be stative & dynamic E.g. have Im having a meeting (dynamic) I have a new house (stative)


Examiners comments on sample answers The definition for (b) is incomplete (the candidate does not say that the learners exchange information) and therefore the further point cannot be credited. The example is clear. The definition for (b) is clear, as is the example but there is no appropriate further point provided. No marks could be awarded for (c) as the definition and example are inaccurate and the answer to (e) only contains an appropriate example as the definition is imprecise and therefore no further point could be awarded.


Paper 1 Task 3

The extract for this task is a speaking activity for upper-intermediate (CEFR B2) level learners. Identify a total of five key language features learners at this level would need in order to complete the activity successfully. Provide an example specific to this activity to support each choice. Names of places are provided in the extract. Do not write about names of places in your answer.


Guideline Answer

Discourse structure (discussing alternatives and making a joint decision) Example initiate negotiate check general consensus come to an agreement check decision (3 needed for example to be credited) Turn taking skills/language for turn-taking Inviting people to speak Example Whod like to start? Interrupting politely Example Can I just say something? Intonation to finish speaking Example any appropriate example with an arrow for intonation pattern Asking if someone has something more to say Example Does anyone else have anything to say? Asking for/giving clarification / paraphrasing / circumlocution Example What do you mean by a service station?, you know, the place where you buy petrol Making suggestions/ responding to suggestions (tentatively) / adjacency pairs (suggestion + response) Example What/How about setting up / Why dont we set up / Lets set up / We could set up a cafe. Thats a great idea, Im not sure about that, well, I suppose we could, We might be able to set up a cafe. What about setting up a caf? Yes, thats a good idea. Asking for/giving/justifying opinions / agreeing/disagreeing / negotiating / hedging Example Whats your opinion?, That would be better, wouldnt it?, I think this would be the best location, Ive got no doubt that this would be the best position, You could be right, The reason why I think that is better is Thats a fair point, but, I see what you mean but Using conditionals/modals/cause and effect language Example 2nd conditional (If we rented this shop, we could / would make more money), 1st conditional If we rent this shop, we can make more money, modals, we might/could/may get more customers Describing location/prepositions of place Example The one on the corner just opposite the restaurant. Comparing and contrasting / using comparative/superlative structures / talking about advantages/disadvantages / talking about alternatives Example The shop next to the launderette is in a much better position, not so well located as, is the closest to, on the one hand the launderette is useful but on the other hand a pub is better for the community Organising the discussion / moving the discussion along / summarising Example OK, lets move on, So I think we all agree that, So it looks as if we all think that, Lets write a list Lexis specific to the task Example late-night opening, refurbish/re-decorate the facilities, office space


5.2 Candidate performance This task continues to be well answered, with 12% of the cohort gaining full marks. This was in line with candidate performance in June 2010. The main problem with this task in this session was the provision of examples which were often not full enough, for example How about ...? as an example for making suggestions, rather than a complete suggestion such as How about setting up a cafe? Some candidates also gave examples which were not relevant to the speaking activity or the level of the learners. Accurate exemplification is key to this task because candidates are awarded one point for the feature and two for the example. The examiners also noted that centres appeared to be advising candidates to outline more than five features. They should note that whilst candidates will not be penalised for doing this, it is not a productive use of time and frequently impacted on timing in other parts of the paper. Weaker answers did not think about the grammar that the task would require and were unable to move beyond the functions of agreeing and disagreeing and the grammatical features of modals and conditionals. They also continued to cite generic features, particularly cohesive devices, and grammatical items such as relative clauses, although less so than in previous sessions. A main omission with these candidates was the discussion of discourse structure and devices to move the discussion along, showing that whilst they recognise the importance of cohesive devices in written texts, they are unable to do the same with spoken ones. A large number of these candidates also continued to provide more than one example for each feature, which is not required; provided too much information as to why a feature is included; and spent too long on the task. A minority of candidates thought that the task was about giving directions. This reinforces the fact that candidates must read the rubric carefully. On a positive note, fewer candidates described generic speaking sub-skills (e.g. turn-taking, interrupting) as separate features but combined them under one heading of turn-taking. Stronger answers discussed a range of features including the discourse structure that the discussion would follow; the functional areas required such as asking for clarification, making suggestions, agreeing and disagreeing; and the vocabulary/grammar specific to the type of discussion, for example the language of comparison, use of modals and prepositions of place. These answers were clearly laid out with the headings of feature and example and the examples were relevant to the text type and the level of the learners. They also only contained one example for each feature, thereby making maximum use of their time.

Candidates are recommended to: read the rubric carefully only discuss what the rubric requires outline no more than six features (five as the task requires and a maximum of one extra one for insurance) make sure their answers cover a range of relevant subskills and discourse features make sure their answers, including examples, are specific to the activity described in the task always give examples and avoid repeating any one example provide one example for each feature provide full language examples, not just sentence stems avoid repeating any of the wording of the extract in their answers list the points they wish to make, avoiding any introduction, summary or conclusion use a bullet point or similar format when answering the task


Sample Answers

5.3.1 The following sample answer gained full marks THREE language of suggestion suggesting What if we chose the first location....? May I suggest that the second location would attract more customers? language of agreement/disagreement I agree Im afraid I dont agree. Im with you on that... Yes, but.... I take your point, but... Lexis of place opposite the restaurant, next to the laundrette..., near the park.


Conditionals If we choose the first location, it will cost us more money 1st conditional, likely, real. If we choose the second location, we wouldnt make much money. 2nd conditional hypothesis. Comparatives/superlatives The first location is the most expensive... The third location is closer to the railway station that the second one.

Examiners comments on sample answer This is an excellent example of an answer which is succinct but gains full marks. The candidate identifies five features and provides an appropriate example which is a full exponent, reflects the feature cited and is at an appropriate level. She includes a good range of functions and grammar but it is interesting that she has not included discussion of speaking sub-skills or discourse structure in her answer. She could have made her answer even shorter by including fewer examples.


The following sample answer gained over half of the marks available for this task

Key Language features 1) Use of language structures to be able to give advantages and disadvantages of the places and reasons. Example: On one hand... Whea Whereas... 2) Conditional structures second contional to hypothetise about the different neighbours when deciding on a suitable place. example: If we chose this neighbourhood, it would... 3) Turn-taking in the conversation to give other students a las chance to put forwu forward their ideas. example: there are natural pauses in the flow of speaking. Student should wait for these to present an idea. 4) Be able to disagree in a polite way with other students in the conversation. example: Well actually that may not be the perfect..... I see your point but... 5) Correct business jargon for the topic at hand. example: lease (the shop) office space Examiners comments on sample answer This answer also includes five features (language for advantages/disadvantages; conditionals; turntaking; agreeing/disagreeing; and lexis appropriate to the topic) but the candidate lost four marks because of inadequate exemplification. The example for the first feature was not credited (On one hand/whereas) because it was incomplete. To be awarded two marks, the candidate would have needed to provide a full exponent, for example, On the one hand, the launderette is useful for the local people whereas another cafe is not necessary. The example that the candidate provided for turntaking was not actually an example, nor did it match the feature of turn-taking. She needed to provide a language example as indicated in the GLAs. On a positive note, the layout of the answer was clear.

5.3.3 The following sample answer obtained under half the marks available Five key language features:

1) The learner would need the ability to ^ express opinions using terms such as, I think that... In my opinion...to be able to putfor forward own ideas to other members of the group. 2) The learners would need to know how to take turns listening and knowing when to speak. This involves recognizing signs like discourse markers used in language indicating w


3) Learners will need to have a good knowledge of language especiall to be able to make comparisons eg: more expensive than, cheaper than and also use of superlatives such as nearest eg nearest to a multi-storey car park and cheapest the cheapest to rent. 4) Learners will also need language to make suggestions in a manner that would be suitable for negotiations for example use of modals e.g. should and could. The learners should be able to use a range of conditionals if + past simple to to discuss in a real and imaginary way possibilities of shop rentals in the various locations. 5) The learners should also be able to use back chanelling in response to the other business people in the group to help maintain motivation and show interest and agreement eg Oh, really?

Examiners comments on sample answer This answer also contains five features: giving opinions; turn-taking; comparative structures; making suggestions; and conditionals (combined under point 4). The fifth feature could not be credited because back-channelling is a generic feature applicable to spoken interaction. However, as in the previous sample answer, the candidate lost eight marks because of poor exemplification. The only feature which gained three marks was that of comparative language because the candidate gave a full language example. I think that, In my opinion needed to be completed with an example relevant to task, e.g. I think that a carpark is vital for business. The same applies to the feature of modals when should or could needed to be placed in a sentence to be credited, e.g. We could get more customers if we built a supermarket. There are no language examples provided for turn-taking or conditionals. The layout of the answer is reasonable with some use of underlining to highlight the feature.


6 a

Paper 1 Task 4 The text is an advertisement for a type of car insurance. Identify five features of the text which are typical of its genre. Give one example of each feature you identify. You must include features of organisation and language. Do not include more than one feature of layout. Look at the following extracts from the text. (i) (ii) Comment on the form of the words in bold as they are used in the text. How are the words in bold used to make the text cohesive? or that it is available (line 3) it will give you peace of mind (line 9) like engines and gearboxes (lines 12/13) if you want to stay loyal to your local garage you can (lines 17/18)

Comment on the form and meaning/use of the verbs in bold below as they are used in the text. Discuss meaning/use in terms of both grammar and lexis.

Not many people realise that our unique warranty even covers cars that have done a few miles and are getting on a bit (lines 1-3) Look at the following word combinations which are taken from the text. Comment on the form and features of connected speech of each. go wrong (line 7) wear and tear (line 16) be in with a chance (lines 24/25)


Guideline Answer

NB candidates must correctly identify a minimum of one feature of organisation and one feature of language features of the text characteristic of an advertisement

Layout different font sizes i.e. big font for heading, small font for terms and conditions use of bold to highlight main points e.g. for a quote picture of customer / logo Content website address / telephone number / contact details / small print offer of prize Organisation engage interest then sales pitch, then factual information, then phone number and email address, finally terms and conditions NB candidates must mention a minimum of two points begins with advantages and ends with consumer persuaded to logical choice begins by highlighting problems and then provides solutions

Discourse parallelism to make text easier to process/used for emphasis e.g. whether you have / whether it has and clock up / pile up repetition for emphasis e.g.(cover (verb) x 3, covers, cover x 2 (noun), warranty x 5 Grammatical/lexical 2nd person you / 3rd person we / imperative to give sense of inclusion/make it directly relevant to reader/ to personalise/ to make the company more human/more appealing to the reader e.g. you want to stay..., Call, we cover present simple to express certainty/reality/fact e.g. we cover 1st /0 conditional/ will to make promises / persuade (repeated) colloquial/informal lexis / multi-word verbs in main body to give friendly tone e.g. getting on a bit, clock up, pile up, wear and tear, a smart move, funny (positive) adjectives to persuade and sell e.g. unique, smart (semi)formulaic catch phrase to catch the readers attention e.g. warranties made easy! lexis relevant to car insurance, e.g. protect, warranty, cover

Style humorous/friendly tone in main body e.g. funny how things go wrong formal (lexis) in terms and conditions e.g. are available for cars and car derived vans ineligble

bi & bii form of the words in bold and use for cohesion that (line 3) Form conjunction subordinate / subordinating Cohesion introduces/links to clause after realise It (line 9) Form singular impersonal / 3rd person pronoun Cohesion cataphoric / forward reference reference to knowing that like (lines 12/13) Form preposition Cohesion introduces examples (of expensive items) / exemplification of a general point


you can (lines 17/18) Form 2nd person singular pronoun modal main clause part of a conditional structure Cohesion repetition of you maintains personalisation/relevance of whole text to reader omission / ellipsis of verb phrase stay loyal to your local garage can maintains the present verb form (as it matches the present simple want in the first clause)

form and meaning/use of words in bold

covers Form 3rd person singular present simple main / regular verb transitive Meaning/use expresses a fact/general truth about unique warranty means includes / applies to / is applicable to / insures have done Form 3rd person plural present perfect simple auxiliary (have) irregular past participle (of do) (done) do is part of (set) phrase/collocation do a few miles Meaning use perfect connects past to present (miles done up to now) / action which began in the past and continues now perfect refers to completed/accumulated events over a period in unspecified past delexicalised use of do done means travelled/completed/driven informal are getting on Form 3rd person plural present continuous/progressive auxiliary (are / be) present participle getting

on is an adverb/adverbial particle get on is a multiword/phrasal verb intransitive / inseparable get on is part of (set) phrase get on in years t is doubled because it occurs in single vowel + single consonant pattern

Meaning/use present continuous refers to an ongoing/changing/developing process get on means to become older get on is an informal style / idiomatic get on is normally used for humans / adds a human quality to the car

form and features of connected speech of word combinations

go wrong Form verb + adverb collocation part of the infinitive/bare infinitive/base form (following start to) Features of connected speech main stress is on wrong wear and tear Form fixed/set phrase / collocation / idiomatic expression / collocation / lexical chunk binomial noun + conjunction + noun Features of connected speech intrusive /r/ / linking /r/ between wear and /we\r\n/ weak vowel sound / schwa and /\n/ repetition/assonance of /e\/ elision of /d/ before consonant /\nte\/ equal stress on both nouns be in with a chance Form be = imperative in = adverb with = preposition a = indefinite article chance = singular countable noun (semi-) fixed/set phrase / idiomatic phrase / lexical chunk / collocation Features of connected speech weak form/schwa in a /\/ vowel vowel / intrusive /j/ between be and in /bijn/ consonant-vowel catenation/linking between with and a /w\/ (possible) assimilation of /n/ in in with /mw/ main stress on chance


6.2 Candidate performance As in June 2010, the quality of answers to this task varied widely. There were some very high scores and some extremely low ones but approximately 60% of the cohort obtained more than 50% of the total marks and, overall, performance on this task, whilst not as high as last June, was still the second highest since the Module One examination was introduced. Those candidates who gained fewer than half the marks did so because of inaccurate or incomplete answers. Answers were inaccurate particularly in the area of cohesion/discourse in parts a and b, and form and connected speech in part d. Many candidates lost marks because they did not describe grammatical form accurately, or with a correct use of terminology, or with enough precision, or in enough detail. They also automatically lost marks when they omitted sections or abandoned the task. They should note that this is a dangerous strategy to adopt. There are a lot of available points for this task and candidates are advised to make as many points as possible (within the time available) because this task carries a maximum of 40% of the total number of marks for Paper 1. In relation to specific points on content: a features of the text characteristic of an advertisement Part a was generally quite well done and candidates produced a good range of answers which included features of layout and language. Many candidates failed to gain full marks for this part because they did not identify a feature of organisation, and if they did mention it, it was often a point which was lifted from a previous GLA, e.g. the use of short paragraphs, which was applicable to a newspaper article but not to an advertisement. Many candidates continued to over-rely on features of layout and content, e.g. the use of a picture or the inclusion of a website. When discussing lexis, weaker candidates wrote lexis related to the topic and then gave examples of car-related vocabulary. Rather they needed to specify what the topic was (insurance) and make sure that the example was from this lexical field as it occurred in the advertisement. Few candidates identified the humorous/friendly tone in the text or the use of discourse features, i.e. parallelism or repetition for emphasis, thereby reflecting the weakness cited above in relation to Task Three. Discourse is an area of the syllabus which it would appear that some centres need to cover in more depth. There was less evidence than in previous sessions of pre-learnt features taken from previous guideline answers although weaker candidates did inaccurately cite linkers as a feature specific to advertisements. A key issue which has been evident in previous sessions was that many candidates continued to spend too long on this part of the task, gave more than one example for each feature and gave reasons for the features, which is not a requirement. Candidates should note that a maximum of 5 marks is available for this section and that they are only required to list the feature and give an appropriate example from the text provided. that / it / like / you can Most candidates were able to identify the following points: it is a pronoun; like introduces examples; you can is made up of a pronoun and modal and there is an omission of the verb phrase stay loyal to your local garage, i.e. they were only able to gain 5 points out of a possible 19 available for part b. This reflects the fact that many candidates are challenged by the area of discourse/cohesion, and that others have not been trained to analyse form in detail, e.g. they wrote pronoun rather than third person singular pronoun and therefore only gained 1 rather than 3 marks. Overall, the majority of candidates found part b challenging, especially the analysis of that, which few identified as being a conjunction but rather described it as being a relative pronoun or like as a preposition which they described as being an adverb or verb. They also could not identify the way that it gave cohesion to the text. Analysis of it also proved to be challenging with many candidates mis-identifying its use as anaphoric rather than cataphoric reference. In terms of you can, they recognised the use of ellipsis but made no reference to the use of the repetition of you or the verb form can. Most answers were presented in note form, using bullet points, which made for a good use of time.


covers / have done / are getting on Candidates performed more confidently in this part of the task and appeared to be more confident when analysing the meaning, and to a lesser extent, the form of grammatical verb forms. The majority of candidates gained the most marks in this section, particularly those who knew how to analyse form and meaning at a basic level, as well as being able to make more complex points. However, candidates continued to lose marks because they were not detailed enough in their analysis, for example they did not give the full name of the present perfect simple or state that done is an irregular past participle. They frequently did not mention which person the verb form was, whether it was singular or plural or whether the verb was transitive or intransitive. Weaker candidates also did not consider spelling as part of form, i.e. they did not highlight the spelling rule for the doubling of the consonant t in getting. Many candidates were unable to identify the part of speech of on in getting on, stating that it was a preposition rather than adverb. The difference between prepositions and adverbs would be a useful area for candidates to research in more depth as these are high frequency language items. go wrong / wear and tear / be in with a chance The majority of candidates were able to identify the following points: wear and tear is a fixed phrase (although few recognised that it was a collocation) with intrusive /r/ linking between wear H and and a weak sound in and and elision of /d/ in and; in be in with a chance, a is an indefinite article, its a fixed expression, there is a schwa sound in a, intrusive /j/ linking between be H in and consonant vowel linking between with H a. However, very few candidates discussed the form or stress of go wrong and again, were unable to identify the form of in or with (see part c), be or chance. The main weakness displayed in this part was that not many candidates could describe features of connected speech and those who could, generally did not use the phonemic script or symbols to highlight the phonological feature, e.g. H to show a link or / to show elision. As has been stated in all the previous examination reports, candidates must use phonological terms to describe features and be able to use the phonemic script accurately to illustrate them. Some candidates lost marks in this section because they forgot to analyse the form of the lexical items or analysed their meaning and omitted form, presumably because they had misread the rubric. Others did not attempt this section, possibly because they felt unconfident about the phonological analysis required or because of poor time management.

Candidates are recommended to: in Part a, only state five features and give one example for each as only a maximum of 5 marks are available in this section ensure that a minimum of one of the features identified in part a relates to the criteria set out in rubric in parts bd, make their answers as detailed as is required, making as many points as possible, as indicated in the Guideline Answer read the rubric carefully to see exactly what they are required to discuss pay attention to words given in bold and only comment on them in the way required, not on accompanying or surrounding words make sure they consistently provide the full information required, including giving examples when asked for make use of precise linguistic / technical terms rather than the more simplified terms they might use with students use the phonemic script / phonological symbols where appropriate: candidates will not be awarded marks if this is not used where required or used accurately only comment on pronunciation/phonology in sections where it is specifically mentioned lay out their answers in list form, and make it clear what part of the answer they are writing about make as many points as possible in Task 4 (within the time available) as it carries almost half the marks available in Paper One


6.3 6.3.1

Sample Answers The following sample answer gained a high number of the points available

a) informal phrases e.g. getting on a bit l.3 information about terms and conditions in small typeface at the bottom of the advertisement e.g. Certain exotic models are also ineligible l.26 imperatives urging the consumer to take action to investigate the product further or buy the product e.g. call the number below l.19 contact details in large typeface e.g. 0800 097 8001 l.23 conditional clauses and wh clauses to exemplify situations when it would be a good idea to buy this insurance e.g. or whether it has recently run out l. 5-6 informal conjun discourse markers giving a friendly tone and leading the reader from one idea to the next e.g. Whats more, if you want... l.17 b) i) that it like you can ii) that FORM: that is a subordinating conjunction introducing an indirect statement it is available following a verb of thinking realise FORM: 3s subject pronoun referring to knowing that ... garage bills wont pile up FORM: preposition FORM: 2s subject pronoun + modal auxiliary verb ellipsis of stay loyal cohesive use: parallelism with that our unique warranty... getting on a bit L1-3 ideas add to each other and are expressed in similar form. links the concept of realising to what is realised. avoids repetition of not many people realise cohesive use: cataphoric reference to knowing that ... pile up allows peace of mind to be the theme of the sentence and knowing that garage bills wont pile up to be the rheme. Puts focus onto garage bills wont pile up Ends sentence with rhyming phrases clock up and pile up' cohesive use: to give examples of expensive items covered by the policy allows inclusion of further items from the lexical set related to cars, helping lexical cohesion. cohesive use ellipsis of stay loyal to your local garage used to avoid repetition parallelism you want to and you can FORM: 3s present simple of regular verb cover MEANING/USE: covers here means insures present simple is used to express a general, timeless, truth covers is a technical word from the field of insurance. transitive verb with the object cars



you can

c) covers

have done FORM:

3pl present perfect ^ of do auxiliary verb have + irregular past participle done


MEANING/USE: done here means travelled present perfect is used to refer to the whole lifetime of the car from when it was bought up to the present. done used to mean travelled is informal. use of the present perfect implies past action with present result: it may need servicing are getting on F: 3pl present continuous of intrusive phrasal verb get on present tense of be + -ing form of verb + particle -ing form of verbs formed with double t because get is a onesyllable verb ending with one vowel and one consonant. informal get on here means to get old present continuous is used to express a changing condition getting older. getting on a bit is a fixed expression which is an informal euphemism for old
infinitive with to following start


d) go wrong FORM: Infinitive + adverb CONNECTED SPEECH: /gW H '/ stress on wrong linking vowel consonant go H wrong

wear and tear FORM: two uncountable nouns joined by and CONNECTED SPEECH: /'weWrWn'teW/ /'weWrWn'teW/ - stress on wear and tear - weak form of and: /Wn/ - linking r (wear H and ) because followed by a vowel - elision of /d/ at the end of and be in with a chance FORM: imperative + preposition + preposition +indefinite article + countable noun fixed expression CONNECTED SPEECH: /bi'jnwW'tns/ - weak forms: be /bi/ a /W/ - linking with H a consonant-vowel - intrusive /j/ be in vowel-vowel


linking where first vowel is a front unrounded vowel. stress on in and chance


Examiners comments on sample answer Part a This part of the answer is clear and accurate, with each feature backed up by one relevant example, which shows a good use of time. The candidate describes a range of features which relate to layout, content, lexis and grammar. However, she only gains four marks here because she is not specific on what type of conditional clause is a common feature of advertisements and states that informal discourse markers are a feature of this genre, which is not the case. Even if she had identified another accurate language feature, she would not have been able to gain full marks because there was no organisational feature identified which was a requirement of the rubric. The layout of this part of the task is clear. Part b The candidate is succinct and accurate in her answer and she gains 14 out of a possible 19 marks, which reflects the fact that her answer provides an excellent amount of detail in terms of form and cohesion/discourse. The layout is neat but the answer contains some repetition. Part c Again, the candidate scores very highly in this part and her analysis is both accurate and detailed in terms of form and meaning/use of the three verb forms. The task is clearly laid out and labelled and as in the other sections, she does not waste time using a discursive style to make her points. Part d The candidates response to this part of the task is also very strong. Her analysis is accurate in terms of form and pronunciation and she uses the phonemic script accurately to illustrate her points.


The following sample answer gained just over half the marks available for this task

a) Layout a large picture of a smiling middle-aged man and a car to draw the attention of the target audience and convey the message of the text. Organisation Generally written in quite long sentences. The first paragraph is one sentence with several subordinate clauses. use of parataxis for persuasive purposes as the miles clock up the bills wont pile up line 10. Lexis Lots of informal language. getting on a bit line 3. This is also supported by personal deictic pronouns. There are 10 2nd person pronouns including subject, obj..... Grammar 5 Lots of 1st conditionals 5 1st conditionals using if or whether for variation. Often emphasised with even. b) that i) an pronoun used to link the main verb realise with the object clause. ii) used as a cohesive device to avoid repetition of the main verb phrase Not many people realise it i) a subject p 3rd person non-personal pronoun. ii) cataphoric reference to avoid having a long subject phrase. like i) an adverb. ii) an informal way of giving an example that makes it easier for the reader to understand what is meant.
this use of examples makes the text more persuasive

you can i) subject + modal to express possibility. ii) ellipsis of the main verb in the clause avoids repetition.


c covers Form: present simple verb 3rd person Meaning/Use: as part of the collocation insurance, warranty, guarantee covers something. The present simple indicates that is a state that is always true. have done Form: present perfect simple. have agrees with plural subject cars Meaning/use: colloquial collocation to do miles the meaning is to complete or to finish. Present perfect shows that the action is in the past but is relevant in the present. are getting on Form: present continuous. are agrees with a plural subject. Meaning use: colloquial expression meaning getting old present continuous shows that the action is happening now but not yet finished. d) to go wrong: verb with adjective complement. wear and tear: noun phrase linking /r/ between wear and and elision of the final /d/ in and. be in with a chance verb + colloquial preposition phrase beH in a linking /j/ in H with elision of /n/ with H a linking //

Examiners comments on sample answer Part a The candidate only identifies two features, one relating to layout and the other to lexis. The point about organisation is descriptive and not specific to the genre of an advertisement. The latter also applies to the mention of parataxis, which is a generic feature. Whilst the candidate identifies the prevalence of 1st conditional structures in the text, the point could not be credited because the candidate does not identify the appropriate functional use of making promises / persuading. Part b Some of the information provided is inaccurate, illustrating the comments above regarding weaknesses identifying the form of that and like. The candidate gains less than half the marks available for this section, reflecting the fact that he needs to include more detail, particularly in terms of the form of the items. Part c The answer to this part does not include any inaccuracy but again, it needs more detail relating to form to maximise the number of marks available. Part d This part is the weakest in this task. There is very limited detail provided regarding the form of the three lexical items and the phonological information is inaccurate in terms of elision between in with and the phonemic symbol for th. A mark could not be awarded for the linking between be in because the term intrusive is omitted. This is a typical example of an answer where the candidate may have the required knowledge but does not show this explicitly in his answer. 6.3.3 The following sample answer gained fewer than half the marks available for this task Feature of genre a) layout bold writing to chatch attention pictures numbers to call small writing at the bottom


Organization title/heading at the top paragraphs to organize ideas clearly. logos addressing the reader to personalize the advert so the reader can relate to it. e.g. line 5 ...your warranty ran out... line 8 ...if you decided to keep... line 20 ...you will soon find out... use of imperatives to encouridge reader to do what they want e.g. Protect yourself... Call 0800... Visit our website. vocabulary related to a specific vocabulary related to the product advertised car, warranty, MOT, garage. Use of quouts go quots in order to stay in a readers mind e.g. Warranties made easy! or that it is available that is a pronoun ii that here is anaphoric reference making text cohesive by subs avoiding repetition of word warranty which it that refers to. i it will give you peace in mind personal pronoun forwards to knowing that as the miles.

4 b) i

ii here it is used as a cataphoric reference refering clock up ...., making the text cohesive by substituting. i ii i ii like engines and gearboxes adjective makes the text cohesive by providing examples. ....you can pure modal verb talks about possibility to stay loyal

4. c) covers form third person in present simple meaning/use protects / is available for those cars. have done have on their clock form present perfect meaning/use means how many miles they have driven so far used to express action that started in the past and have recently stopped or still continues. are getting on form present continuous means that the cars have been

in use for a shorter some time and might be used a bit.


d) - go wrong collocation - wear and tear collocation - be in with a chance phrasal verb.

Examiners comments on sample answer Part a The candidate gains three marks for content (phone number/small print), the use of you/imperative to address the reader, and the use of a catch phrase. She presents the second point as two separate ones, reflecting the lack of range that is apparent in this answer and many others like it. The point regarding lexis could not be credited because the candidate writes specific vocabulary related to the product advertised rather than specific vocabulary related to insurance. The points included under the heading of organisation are generic and not specific to this genre. Finally, the inclusion of more than one example makes the answer overly long. Part b The candidates answer is inaccurate regarding that although accurate in terms of it. She loses marks because her description of form is too skimpy, particularly in terms of it and you can. Part c The candidates answer to this part is also accurate but too brief in terms of form and meaning/use. Part d The candidates response to this part of the task is minimal in terms of form and she does not attempt to analyse the phonological features. .


Paper 1 Task 5

The text (133 words) for this task is reproduced on the opposite page. It was spoken by a learner in an intermediate (CEFR B1) class in response to the following task: Tell your teacher the story in the pictures below. Note: Parts of the text are transcribed in phonemics representing how they were spoken and the syllables which the learner stressed are underlined.

/ eWrwsn lektrk p / / raved / There was an electric shoperwhere arrived a man with a jacket / WnW / and a...a bag / wW / Sothe man with the jacket asked to the

/ tuijWnWr / ownerasked to the owner abouterone radioerwhich / WtpvdW / / furntjWr / / ws trajntu / was at the top of theof the furniture, then when the owner was trying to / tekt / / disaddtu / er take iterthe man with the jacket decided to stole a radio but / ptndWbtn // ndW redW / heer he made the mistake than put on the button and the radio start / tusn / toto singing. / frmW p / So when the man with the jacket started to run away from the shop the owner / reWlazd tW / realised that the man with the jacket was trying to stole, so when this man / WravtuW strit / / hdjptunt / arrived to the streetera policemanerhad the opportunity /tuktt/ to catch itcatch him. Identify three key strengths and three key weaknesses of the text. Provide an example of each strength and each weakness. Your answer should focus on some or all of the areas listed below: Task achievement Organisation Complexity and range of language Accuracy of language


Which one of the weaknesses identified above would you choose to prioritise? Give three reasons for your choice.


Guideline Answer Key strengths and weaknesses

Key strengths Task achievement Main events in the narrative are expressed in sequence / the narrative is coherently told / the listener would be able to follow the narrative. Example The man goes into the shop, puts the radio in his bag, it turned on, he ran away, the police caught him (a minimum of two events must be mentioned) Task achievement Speaker self-corrects / fills pauses / uses compensation strategies Example .. er ..., about ...er...one radio...er...which Range and accuracy of grammar Accurate use of past simple AND/OR past continuous tenses Example he realised the man was trying Range and accuracy of grammar Accurate use of articles Example a man with a jacket followed by man with the jacket Range and accuracy of grammar Good use of relative clauses / subordinate time clauses Example a shop where arrived a man, one radio which was at the top ... when the owner was trying to take it, when the man started to run away Range of lexis Good collocations/chunks Example made the mistake, run away, at the top of the, had the opportunity Range of lexis/grammar Accurate use of linkers Example so, then, and, but Pronunciation Word stress is accurate / sentence stress generally placed correctly on the content words, not function words. Example jacket, owner, button, radio, furniture, mistake, away, arrived, policeman, opportunity Pronunciation Linking / elision Example the opportunity /ijpt.../ and a /\n\/, that the /t\/


Key weaknesses Accuracy and range of lexis Limited/inaccurate for level Example bag (briefcase), put on the button (switch it on), furniture (shelf), take it (get it down, lift it down), singing (playing) OR The learner needs to use synonyms to refer to the man / whilst it is usual in a spoken text to repeat lexis, the repeated use of the man with the jacket creates a negative effect on the listener Example after the man with the jacket is first used in line 1, it is repeated in lines 2, 5, 8, 9 / learner could use the robber, the thief Pronunciation Weak forms / not using schwa Example to, was, at, and, arrived Pronunciation Inconsistent pronunciation of the (regular) past simple forms / -ed endings / tends to pronounce the final syllable Example arrived /raved/, realised /re\lazd/ Accuracy of grammar Wrong preposition Example mistake that put on the button, arrive to the street, asked to the owner, arrived to the street Accuracy of grammar Errors in verb patterns / verb structures Example start to singing, trying to stole

Which weakness to prioritise

Candidates may choose any of the key weaknesses listed in part a. They should provide three reasons for their choice from the list below: the learners level the learners exams and future study needs the learners job needs fossilisation of error transfer to other genres transfer to other skills to make them sound more fluent / useful in the real world specific to the communicative purpose / success of the text (i.e. reference to genre in its own right) the effect on the listener easy to rectify, therefore motivating

7.2 Candidate performance Performance on this task was lower than in June 2010 and was (by a small margin) the lowest recorded since the first Module One examination taken in December 2008. However, the reasons for this do not appear to be because of the nature of the text, but rather because of a poor knowledge of phonology and because of poor timing.


Whilst this was the first time that there had been a spoken extract there was no strong evidence that candidates were challenged by this. Most candidates were able to identify at least two strengths and one weakness accurately, without being put off by the need to decipher the phonemic script and other areas of phonology. Most candidates cited task achievement and word stress as the main strengths, and accuracy/range of lexis as the main weakness. Those candidates who knew about speaking skills and phonology, plus the language features required when telling a story, did well, and those who did not struggled. Most strengths and weaknesses were identified across the cohort, the exception being the weakness under accuracy of grammar of errors in verb patterns / verb structures. Many candidates saw to stole and thought that the error was a problem with the use of the infinitive rather than the pattern required after the verbs to start / to try. A major weakness in many of the answers in this session was where candidates took criteria such as accuracy of grammar or pronunciation as blanket areas without saying which particular grammatical or phonological feature was a strength or weakness. For example, a candidate would cite connected speech as a strength but did not say that the specific feature was linking or elision and so did not get a point although if the example was accurate, they got a point for that. Similarly, if they cited accuracy of grammar as a strength, they often did not narrow this down to past tenses, or conversely if they cited accuracy of grammar as a weakness, they did not state that the problem lay with prepositions. Many did not state under range of lexis that it was the students use of collocations/chunks which was the particular strength. This lack of specificity meant that on many occasions no points could be credited. Candidates need to be aware of the importance of specifying which aspect of phonology, grammar, lexis, discourse, or spelling is a strength or weakness. The other major weakness was that some candidates were vague on features of pronunciation. They tended to pick up on minor problems related to individual sounds, and/or their use of the phonemic script was inaccurate, and very few identified the problem of the pronunciation of regular past participle endings. As in Task 4, a lack of phonological knowledge was problematic and centres and candidates alike should ensure that they research this area of language in more depth. The majority of candidates lost marks because they did not include any comments regarding the effect of the strengths and weaknesses on the effectiveness of the text. Candidates should note that there are 4 additional marks available for 2 comments over the whole answer. Weaker candidates continued to include more than one example for each strength or weakness cited. Whilst it was positive that the majority of candidates did not waste time by identifying more than three strengths and three weaknesses, a large number either did not attempt the task or complete it. This is an inadvisable strategy to adopt as this task carries the second largest number of marks (i.e. 27) in Paper 1. Very few candidates evaluated the text in terms of criteria which were not listed in the rubric, which showed an improvement on last Junes session. Layout of answers was generally better and most candidates used headings to separate their answer into strengths and weaknesses, and then sub-headings of the criteria listed in the rubric, e.g. Task Achievement, with another sub-heading of example to provide clear signposting for the reader. The lack of specificity in terms of areas cited above inevitably resulted in problems in part (b) because the area identified was not stated clearly enough and so candidates automatically lost the opportunity to gain a potential 6 marks for this section. For example, a candidate would write that they had chosen to work on grammatical accuracy without saying which area they had selected, i.e. prepositions of verb patterns. It was this lack of specificity which partly accounts for the lower marks achieved in this task. The majority of candidates identified three justifications easily. However, they were usually only awarded one mark per justification because they simply presented the three justifications as a list and did not develop them. Candidates should note that, in order to be awarded two marks per justification, they need to expand each justification to provide an appropriate amount of depth. Other candidates reproduced a long list of justifications from previous examination reports, some of which were obviously pre-learnt (e.g. effect on the reader!). This was not a productive use of time as only the first three justifications could be credited.


Candidates are recommended to: only give one example for each strength and each weakness only discuss in part a the areas given in the rubric give both strengths and weaknesses as required only discuss three key strengths and three key weaknesses; marks are not given for more than three of either. However, if they outline more than three strengths or weaknesses, they will not be penalised but they should be aware that this will impact on timing over the whole paper bear in mind the learners level when commenting in part a on the texts strengths and weaknesses include two comments in part a on the effect the particular strengths and weaknesses have on the effectiveness of the text use a bullet point layout for the strengths and weaknesses only discuss in b a weakness mentioned in a only discuss one area of weakness in part b be specific in b on the exact weakness to be worked on limit answers in b to reasons for prioritising an area make sure they allow themselves enough time to complete this task; 25 minutes is recommended. 7.3 Sample Answers

7.3.1 The following sample answer gained most of the marks available for this task 5 STRENGTHS * Task achievement: covers each of the pictures in the prompt. e.g. the electric shop, the asking the owner, steal a radio, radio made a sound, tried to run away, police caught him. The learner covers the main points in the correct order so that a listener could follow the story without the pictures. Range/ * Accuracy of grammar: choice of tenses e.g. which was at the top of the furniture....when the owner was trying to take it In general the past simple and past continuous are used consistently and correctly, allowing the listener to follow the narrative without too much difficulty. * Pronunciation: sentence stress e.g. when this man arrived to the street sentence stress is correctly placed throughout the text, with the key words stressed. This will help the listener to follow the story without straining to catch key words. Mult Polysyllabic words are generally correctly stressed (eg furniture) which will help the sentence stress to be more perceptible. WEAKNESSES * Pronunciation: mispronunciation of ed endings eg arrived /raved/ realised /reWlazd/ This could be distracting for a listener and they might spend time trying to reconstruct what the speaker should have said and thus miss the next part of the story. * Accuracy of lexis: some words which are inappropriately used eg put on the button singing This could confuse or amuse a listener, who might have a negative impression of the learners overall language ability because these mistakes are particularly noticeable. * Accuracy of grammar: misuse of the past simple instead of the present simple infinitive e.g. trying to stole This could be confusing for a listener: since the sounds of steal and stole are quite different, this listener could think the that another word was intended.

PRIORITY I would prioritise the mispronunciation of ed endings because: it is easy to learn the rule about this feature so it will be motivating for the student. -ed endings are used in many genres of speaking, not just anecdotes, so the student will be able to see the bee benefit in many situations. There is a high surrender value for the student. The effect on the listener is that the students overall English is worse than it actually is. Pronunciation often seems to be a major factor in an untrained listeners impression of good English or bad English, regardless of other factors like grammar or lexis. Examiners comments on sample answer The answer is focussed on the criteria outlined in the rubric. It clearly cites three key strengths and two key weaknesses of the text and gives clear examples. It also includes a reason as to how the features impact on the effectiveness of the text, e.g. regarding mispronunciation of ed endings this could be distracting for a listener and they might spend time trying to reconstruct what the speaker should have said and thus miss the next part of the story. However, it is not a productive use of time to include a reason for each strength and weakness because the four extra marks will only be awarded for two comments and no more. However, whilst this is clearly a very competent candidate, she, like so many of the cohort, inaccurately identifies the error with to stole, saying that it is a misuse of the past simple rather than the infinitive. This reinforces the fact that candidates must look at the language which precedes (or succeeds) the error in order to correctly identify it. In terms of part b, she correctly identifies an area of weakness to work on which she clearly stated in part a. She provides three justifications, the second two of which are fully developed and therefore gain two marks each.

7.3.2 The following sample answer gained just below half the marks available for this task 5 Three key strengths 1. Task achievement: the learner covers the stages outlined in the illustration including main ideas. Limited but appropriate topic vocabulary 2. Grammar: Some accuracy with past simple Past continuous (was trying) Time adverbials (when the owner...) 3. Pronunciation: Word stress is generally correct eg. away, furniture, arrived, and sentence stress is is generally on key content words at the top. Key weaknesses 1. Range + accuracy of grammar. - Problems with verb patterns e.g start to singing decided to stole - Word order: where arrived a man - No grammatical V 5 referencing (pronouns) of Man......Jacket 2 trying to stole verb forms, conjunctions,
(so) (realised)

lexis: limited range of lexis. Learner does not substitute Man with jacket with synonyms or other lexical reference.

3. Pron: schwa /W/ - pronounced as /e/ the pronounced as a (line 4) furniture pronounced as /W/ /Wr/

- Learner has trouble w/ sound in ing (line 4) - Trouble w/ , pronouncing as d. past simple regular ed, after v. Pronounces as Id, b) Priority pron This has the greatest negative affect on intelligibility. Better pron. of conne sounds will produce a positive effect on listeners, increasing learner confidence. Context learn listeners will not be confused or think a word is something else. fossilisation: important to avoid fossilisation of vocal errors level: learner should be pronouncing better at this level.

Examiners comments on sample answer The candidate identifies four strengths and weaknesses. The examiner awarded marks for the three which described the strength / weakness with an accompanying example. This meant that the identification of task achievement as a strength was not credited because the candidate does not say exactly what information the story contains, and the weakness of the mispronunciation of ed endings because the candidate does not include a full word/example from the spoken text. The layout of the task is messy and the candidate wastes time giving more than one example, listing irrelevant information and citing more than the required three strengths and weaknesses. This time would have been spent more productively giving two reasons as to how these strengths or weaknesses impact positively or negatively on the text. However, the key reason why this answer scores lower than it should have done was because in part b, the candidate only writes that he would work on pronunciation, without saying which particular phonological feature this would be. In part a, he had outlined four pronunciation weaknesses, only two of which were major and one of which was credited because it was accompanied by a clear example. It was therefore not clear which feature of pronunciation he would work on This lack of specificity in part b means that the candidate automatically lost six marks for this part of the task.

7.3.3 The following sample answer gained fewer than half the marks available for this task 5 Task Five Strength (1) use of discourse markers. The learner strengthens the narrative of the story by using words like so (line 2), then (line 4), so (line 8). Strength (2) Task achievement. The learner successfully summarizes the story in the pictures. The key events, such as the poli thief accidentally turning the radio on, are recognized and expl described by the student. These key features mean that the student creates an effective narrative. Meaning well negotiated. Strength (3) Range and accuracy of grammar. The student successfully constructs relative clauses using relative pronouns like which as in which was at the top (line 4). This means that the tone of student successfully adds detail which contributes to the narrative style. Weakness (1) pronunciation of vowel sounds. Several of the // and /e/ and // sounds are wrong or misplaced. The // in arrived should be a //. The // in /llektrk/ should be a // or a /e/. Makes the student sound more continental, perhaps Spanish. Weakness (2) simple verb formation: The past ^ form is used with an infinitive in line 9. to stole. the bare infinitive start is used in line 6.


Weakness (3) lexis : Student makes inappropriate lexis choices: furniture for cupboard or shelves singing for playing. b) Id prioritise weakness 3/lexis. This is because the lexical choices mistakes made by the student are relatively basic ones. Also the general lexical choices made by the student indicate a limited lexical range for quite relatively basic topics. For example she refers to a electric shop in line 1, she refers to the customer as the man with the jacket. This suggests that she the learner would benefit from topic based lexis on shopping or the high street, for example. Secondly the students verb range, whilst adequate for the task, does seem limited at times. She uses wor verbs where some mixed phrases or lexical chunks would be more appropriate. take it in line 5 would be better as take it down or remove it to show him. Equally the use of run away instead of escape. The student would benefit from this as a greater verb range can be applied in many language situations. Thirdly the limited range of lexis creates a faltering style, where the number of pauses in the dialogue are caused by the learner mentally searching for a word. Greater lexis would reduce the frequency of this hesitancy, and contribute to fluency for the learner. line 10 er...a policeman. line 3 er...one radio.

Examiners comments on sample answer In terms of strengths, the candidate identifies three strengths with two examples: the use of linking devices (with three examples from the text); task achievement (only one event from the story included rather than the required two so no marks given for the example because it was incomplete); and the use of relative clauses (example provided and a comment as to how these impact positively on the text). However, in terms of weaknesses, the candidate only outlined one key weakness, that of lexical inaccuracy with two examples. The other two weaknesses cited could not be credited because they are either not major (the mispronunciation of vowel sounds) or not accurately identified (the use of the simple past to form the infinitive to stole rather than an error with a verb pattern). The number of strengths and weaknesses (with appropriate examples) identified is fewer than five which means that no marks for the comment could be awarded. In terms of part b, the candidates answer is full but she only gains one mark for this part because there is only one reason given as to why working on this area would be beneficial to the learner in terms of their possible needs, i.e. the student would benefit from this as a greater verb range can be applied in many language situations. In the first point, the candidate only says that the lexical mistakes made by the student are relatively basic ones without saying how the learner would benefit from improving on this, e.g. it would help progress to the next level and also have an impact on the written genre of story telling which is common in informal channels of communication such as email etc. The same problem was evident in the third paragraph where the candidate writes that greater lexis would reduce the frequency of this hesitancy, and contribute to fluency for the learner. However, the candidate needs to say why this would be useful, e.g. it would have a better effect on the listener and help them to remain focussed on the story. The examiners also noted that this part of the candidates answer contains further analysis and exemplification, which is not required in part b and should only be included in part a.


Paper 2 Task 1

The text for this task is reproduced on pages 3 and 4. It is being used in the following situation: M is a manager in a tourist hotel, with customers mainly from the UK. Her job involves dealing with bookings and correspondence with hotel customers by email. Her overall level is low intermediate (CEFR B1). Her company has sent her on a 2-week intensive one-to-one course, focusing on her professional writing needs. At the end of the course the company informs the teacher that it would like a report. In order to provide more information for the report for the company, the teacher decides to administer this two-part writing test from a public exam. Using your knowledge of relevant testing concepts, evaluate how effectively this task fulfils its purpose for this learner in this situation. Make a total of six points. You must include both positive and negative points.


Guideline Answer

Positive Level The level of the tasks is suitable for a low intermediate student. Direct test It is a direct test of writing / it is clearly a writing test and so has face validity. Integrative test It tests Ms ability to use both language and writing subskills. Context/content The test is clearly work and business orientated, increasing face validity. Appropriateness of text type/task A letter to an unknown person uses similar language/organisation as a business email / is similar to a business email. Writing sub-skills The writing will test Ms ability to use writing sub-skills such as paragraphing, logical progression of ideas, layout, salutations etc. Functional language The functions required in both tasks (explaining, acknowledging, offering, requesting, giving directions) are appropriate. Style Both tasks require neutral / formal language. Instructions There are clear instructions / information about content to include.

Positive Applications Motivation M should find the test motivating to do. Relevance M/employer will see the relevance of the test in terms of Ms needs. Usefulness The functional language tested is useful for M in terms of her work needs. Appropriateness of task types M/employer will feel able to trust the outcome of the test. Data from the test The teacher should be able to write a useful report on the basis of the writing.


Evidence for M/her employer The test should provide evidence of Ms overall writing ability in terms of organisation / ability to select relevant content / use of fixed phrases / cohesion etc. Appropriate style M will see the test as valid as she needs to write in a neutral/formal style at work. Format M will not be tested on her ability to think of ideas but rather on her language/writing skills / shell be able to show her true abilities / shell know what to do. Predictive validity The test will show M/employer how she will perform at work / what she needs to continue working on after the course has finished.

Negative Appropriateness of memo A memo to a colleague lacks content validity because it is unlikely that M would do this in English. Lack of email The test does not test Ms ability to write emails. Lexis/Topic the vocabulary / topic required, e.g. job applications is not relevant to Ms situation/hotel work. Subjective marking There is not one correct answer and the marker will have to use their judgement.

Negative applications Needs/ lack of relevance M/her employer will not feel that the topics / task types are relevant to Ms needs at work. Motivation M may not be motivated to perform well. Not a full picture the results of the test will not give indication for M/employer of Ms ability to use relevant lexis. Feedback on the course Neither the teacher or M will be able to assess the success of the course. Lack of trust/reliability M may not have faith in the teachers ability to mark the test / trust the results of the test / the marking may not be reliable.

8.2 Candidate performance Candidate performance improved slightly from June 2010 with over 50% of the cohort gaining more than ten marks for this task. Examiners noted an overall improvement in terms of candidates understanding what is required in this task. This was reflected in a more appropriate use of terminology, with fewer candidates attempting to use terms as the basis of their positive and negative points and a more frequent and effective use of applications. The most frequent positive points which were identified by candidates were that it was a direct test at an appropriate level with clear instructions and the most frequent negative ones were that there was no test of the learners ability to write an email, the lexis was not relevant and the marking of the test was subjective. Less common points which were identified were that it was an integrative test set in a work and business context in an appropriate neutral/formal style and that writing a memo was not appropriate for this learner. The least common points to be made were that a letter to an unknown person is similar to a business email and that it tests the learners ability to use a range of writing sub-skills and functional language. These omissions reflect the fact that these were the points that candidates needed to be able to identify in terms of this particular test. Examiners commented on the fact that candidates are still over-relying on pre-learnt generic points taken from previous GLAs rather than developing their ability to evaluate the appropriateness of a test with a particular learner in mind. Poor layout continued to be a problem with

many answers suffering from cramped or confusing layout. Rather than using columns, better answers were laid out under the headings of Point and Application, which meant that candidates did not forget to include both elements. Weaker answers: forgot to state the overall purpose of the test, i.e. achievement or they described it as being a progress or diagnostic text, or they avoided the issue by not saying what kind of test it was repeated the same point, particularly that it was a direct test or repeated the same application, particularly that the test would be relevant or not relevant to the learner linked to the above point, did not use a wide enough range of criteria with which to evaluate the test still continued to use testing terms such as content validity as the headings for their points which resulted in the terminology not being related sufficiently to the point being made. As a result, it was unclear whether the candidates understood the terms or not and they lost marks did not refer to relevant testing concepts in terms of this particular test or used terminology inaccurately to describe the test. For example, a high number of candidates used backwash to describe an achievement test, showing yet again that they did not understand that this term refers to the effect that the test has on a course rather than an effect in general. Candidates clearly did not understand that backwash could not be used to describe an end-of-course achievement test as the course had already been completed. Some candidates also described the test as being an example of an indirect rather than a direct test repeated pre-learnt points that they had seen in previous Guideline answers, particularly with reference to fresh starts which was not relevant to this particular test identified key points but then lost marks because they did not include applications repeated the same application for different points (an application is only credited once) or included more than one application for a point which resulted in repetition of applications over the whole answer did not refer explicitly to the learner and their stated needs/goals and how the test met or did not meet these needs and goals Stronger answers (did the opposite of the above PLUS) applied the use of terminology to the test as appropriate so that it was clear that they understood the meaning of the terms used testing terms judiciously, i.e. they did not use them for the sake of including them in their answer but used them where appropriate outlined a range of points in terms of the content, purpose, writing sub-skills, text type, (functional) language required and the marking system of the test combined the points and applications well so that it was clear that they were evaluating the effectiveness of the test with this particular learner in mind Candidates are recommended to: explicitly state what kind of test it is which will help them to use the correct terminology relevant to that type of testing avoid approaching their evaluation through assessing the test against testing concepts such as validity, reliability, backwash etc. read the situation in the rubric carefully, seeing how each part of it can be relevant to the test and to the specified learner make sure their answers are specifically about the particular test make sure they always show how the points they make about the tests effectiveness apply to the particular learner cover a wide range of points relating to the tests effectiveness in their answers use terminology only when relevant and use it accurately avoid repeating the same application to the learner under different points use clear layout that shows which points are intended as positive and which as negative make sure they include both positive and negative points make sure they make six points, including both positive and negative ones



Sample Answers

8.3.1 The following sample answer gained a high number of the marks available for this task POSITIVE This is a writing test and a direct test of the writing skill so and this is what the learner wanted to work on in the course. Therefore the test has face validity for the learner. It is also an integrative test it will test her knowledge of discourse features especially in relation to correspondence and it tests lexis and grammar appropriate for the general genre of correspondence too. The style in which the learner must write is formal in part 2 so this has content validity for the learner who needs to correspond with clients (formal style). The test has construct validity the rubric is very specific & the learner will not have to invent information (this is relevant to her needs because at work she presumably wouldnt have to invent information either.) It tests the candidates ability to write and not her imagination. The test, by being divided into 2 parts, allows for fresh tests so that if the learner is nervous or at the start, she has a chance to settle in and can get be more rel relaxed for the second part of the exam. Its a reliable test it should give the teacher a good idea of the students overall writing ability in controlled situations and under pressure. It will enable the teacher to make valid points on the report about the students level, progress & achievement in the course. NEGATIVE There is a problem with content validity because the learner specifically wants to write emails to clients and both pa neither parts of the test deal with email (Part 1: memo, Part 2: letter so the genre is slightly wrong) There is another problem with the topics of the correspondence neither is related to hotels or tourism this gives the test rather low content validity and possibly low face validity as the learner may question what relevance the topics have to her needs. The one-to-one course that M did may have addressed her specific writing needs and may not have prepared her for this type of test where she has to write a very formal letter in reply to a person who is applying for a job (part 2) responding accurately to this task means requires a good knowledge of genre, discourse conventions and appropriate lexis and grammar M may not have studied these things on the course and therefore the test could be unreliable it may not be a good indicator of her actual ability to write emails for her job.

Examiners comments on sample answer The candidate identifies four positive aspects of the test with different applications for the learner and two negative aspects, one with an application and one without. In terms of the point without an application, the candidate writes that the learner specifically wants to write emails to clients and neither parts of the test deal with email but does not say what the learners reaction would be, e.g. she could be demotivated or the test would not provide a full picture of her abilities etc. It is worth noting that whilst this is a good answer, the candidate gives no thought to the appropriateness of the functions or range of writing sub-skills tested, which would have moved her answer to a higher level of sophistication. Furthermore, the candidates answer is also over long and contains three other points which could not be credited because she had already outlined six valid points, which is the maximum required for this task. In addition, these points are not valid, i.e. that the test contains two fresh starts (a test with fresh start would contain more prompts), its a reliable test (this is a general comment with no specific reference to this test), and speculating on what might have been included in the course, which is outside the remit of the task. On a positive note, the candidate integrates her use of testing terminology well into her answer, thereby showing that she fully understands the terms and can apply them to this particular test.



The following sample answer gained half of the marks available for this task Positive Points Negative Points 1. The test does not test Ms use of emails which is her principle use of English at work. As a result, the test lacks validity. 2. The test is administered by the teacher (and presumably corrected by him/her as well). As a result, the test may lack some reliability as it is not totally objective. 3. It is a summative test and presumably does not reflect the 2 week course content as M had expressed a desire or a course for her needs. As a result, it may not be seen as motivating and creates a negative backwash effect for M.

1. The two tasks are examples of direct testing in that they can be applied to everyday language use. As a result, the test has some content validity. 2. The test covers different skills in writing (e.g. note taking, acknowledging, requesting, etc.) which are integrative skills and are thus valid for M. 3. The test items are appropriate for Ms level (Low Intermediate). They should not be seen by M as beyond her level and should therefore be seen a containing a high level of construct validity. 4. The tests are practical and easy to administer requiring little expertise on the part of the tester.

Examiners comments on sample answer This answer contains three positive points and one negative point but the candidate loses marks because there is a limited amount of reference to the learner. In terms of the positive points, there is only one clearly stated application related to a point, i.e. the test covers different writing skills which is relevant for the learner. The other two points of it being a direct test and the test being appropriate to the learners level were not supported by applications to the learner, e.g. that the teacher would be able to write a useful report on the learners control of writing sub-skills based on the data generated by the test and that she would be able to show her true abilities because the test is at the right level. The examiners noted that it would have been better if the candidate had laid out her answer under the main headings of Positive Points and Negative Points as she does but then with the sub-headings of Point and Application so that she ensures that she includes a different application for each point that she makes. They also noted that there is a fourth positive point which could not be credited because it was generic, i.e. that the tests are practical and easy to administer. In terms of the negative points, the fact that the test will be marked subjectively is supported by the application to the learner that this could make the marking unreliable but the other negative point that the test does not test the learners ability to write emails which is her principal use of English at work is not accompanied by a clearly stated application, e.g. that she will feel that the test is not relevant to her needs at work. The third negative point could not be credited because the candidate is making an assumption about the course content which is outside the remit of the task. It is positive that she integrates some testing terms into her answer although she misuses backwash.


The following sample answer gained only a few of the marks available for this task

(+) The task requires the candidate to use a variety of language structures. e.g. to talk about the future to give instructions Therefore, it is more valid than, for example, a gap-fill activity. (+) It tests what has been taught. i.e The course was a writing course, focusing on professional needs. The test is a writing test, aimed at a professional context. (+) The test would meet a learners expectations of what a test should look like i.e. It has face validity. e.g. quite formal structure bullet points. specifies appropriate word count. (-) The level of the test may not be suitable for a low intermediate learner.


Part 2, for example, requires topic lexis and grammatical structures which a student of this level might struggle with. e.g. acknowledging a letter in a formal letter requires quite complex structures i.e I gratefully received your letter. (-) The test is not direct. We are told that she mainly deals with UK customers by email. In neither question is she tested on her ability to communicate with customers or her ability to write emails. It is therefore not an accurate gauge of her English in relation to her purpose in learning the language. (-) Both task types are very similar. This may be de-motivating to the candidate.

Examiners comments on sample answer The candidate makes six points but only identifies one valid positive point (with no application to the learner) that the test is set in a professional context and one valid negative point (with an application) that the test does not test her ability to write emails. The first strength shows some potential in that the candidate correctly identifies the fact that the test requires the learner to give instructions but this could not be credited because she then goes on to say that this is more valid than .. a gap-fill activity which is not relevant. The third strength is a general point and descriptive. This also applies to the third negative point, whilst the first negative point is inaccurate as the test is appropriate for the level of the learner. This answer did not receive any marks for use of testing terms because face validity occurred in a point which was not credited and direct test was used inaccurately as is shown when the candidate writes that We are told that she mainly deals with UK customers by email. Again, this candidate would benefit from thinking more carefully about layout with the use of the sub-headings Point and Application to guide her answer. Overall, the lack of range and accuracy in this answer is typical of weaker candidates who are not familiar / confident with evaluating the effectiveness of a test with a specific learner / situation in mind.


Paper 2 Task 2

The purpose of the extract as a whole is to enable the students to give opinions on the topic of family roles using should/shouldnt. a Identify the purpose of the exercises listed in the box below in relation to the purpose of the extract as a whole. Exercises for Task Two lead-in 1 lead-in 2 grammar 1 grammar 3 read on 1 read on 2 Identify a total of six key assumptions about language learning that are evident in grammar 1 and read on 2 and explain why the authors might consider these assumptions to be important for language learning. State which exercise or exercises each assumption refers to.


Guideline Answer

Purpose of the exercises

Exercise Lead-in 1

Intended purpose to pre-check/test/teach vocabulary/collocations to activate schemata / engage learners in the topic / to introduce the topic NB this point was allowed for Lead-in 1 or Lead-in 2 but not both see above to provide the opportunity for personalisation to give practice of the vocabulary (in Lead-in 1) to focus on/introduce the meaning and/or form of should/shouldnt to encourage learners to work out the meaning and/or form of should/shouldnt to provide scaffolding/language for speaking / giving opinions to reinforce topic of roles in the family to provide (oral/written) practice of should/shouldnt / giving opinions to allow for personalisation to allow for personalisation/learner creativity to give (oral) practice of should/shouldnt to lead into the text / activate schemata of the topic in the text / get the learners to predict the content of the text to practise scanning / reading for specific information / detail to give (further written) practice of target language to reinforce/check the meaning and/or form of should

Lead-in 2

Grammar 1

Grammar 3

Read on 1

Read on 2


Assumptions and reasons Language should be contextualized (grammar 1) Because context helps with meaning / seeing it in its contexts of use helps acquisition / it is how it occurs in real life Learners need a task to help them read a text (read on 2) Because without one, students will not focus on the relevant parts of the text / will not have a clear purpose / may block on unknown vocabulary Using interesting/controversial/(semi-)authentic texts aids learning (read on 2) Because it is motivating / makes students want to engage with the text and therefore the language Cognitively engaging tasks are useful (read on 2 / grammar 1) Because learners are motivated by them (read on 2) / because cognitive engagement encourages them to process the language forms and leads to greater retention (grammar 1 / read on 2) Learners should work out their own rules for new language / guided discovery / an inductive approach is valuable (grammar 1) Because learners retain rules that they have worked out for themselves / are engaged cognitively with / aids retention Explicit rules about the form and meaning of new language are useful / to focus on form (grammar 1) Because it appeals to analytical learners / gives students a clear record / conforms to students expectations / if you focus learners explicitly on form when language is first introduced, it may help avoid errors/fossilization later on / it shows learners that accurate form is important as well as understanding the meaning of language Visual stimuli / pictures are useful (grammar 1 / read on 2) Because they are recognisable / are engaging / appeal to visual learners It is useful to move from receptive to productive work / input before production (grammar 1 / read on 2) Reading examples of language written down gives learners confidence because they can see if before they have to produce it / helps with accuracy Importance of progression in the level of challenge / PPP / scaffolding (grammar 1 / read on 2) At pre-intermediate level, it is important that learners are given support when they are being presented with potentially new language / it gives them confidence if first they are presented with new language and then given opportunities for practice. It is important to provide opportunities for controlled (written) practice (grammar 1 / read on 2) It allows for learners to work at their own pace / allows the teacher to provide guidance because the learners are working in smaller groups

9.2 Candidate performance This task was generally well done with 53% of the cohort gaining more than 20 marks for the task and candidates performed better than in June 2010 even though part b contained fewer generic assumptions than had been the case in previous sessions. It seems that two reasons could be possible for this improved performance. On the one hand, it could be because centres and/or candidates had taken on board comments from the previous examination report, and candidates were thus more able to identify assumptions behind the design of materials. Or, on the other hand, they could have scored higher on part a because they found it easier to identify the purposes behind the exercises. The examiners noted that the second reason was more likely, based on the candidates marks for part a, which is a sign that centres need to continue to work on the principles of materials design with their candidates. However, it is positive that candidates clearly understood how to

approach both parts of the tasks: in part a, the vast majority gave more than one purpose per exercise; and in part b, they identified six assumptions, referenced these assumptions clearly to specific exercises in the extract, and gave some rationale for their inclusion in the design of the material. However, the examiners noted that candidates who identified four, five or even six assumptions often lost marks because they did not provide sufficient rationale this is something which exam training needs to focus on more explicitly as there are a potential twelve marks available for rationale in part b. Some candidates, both weaker and stronger ones, did not read the rubric carefully enough for part b and referred to all the exercises in part a rather than Grammar 1 and Read On 2. This meant that they included reference to some assumptions which were not relevant, e.g. the value of personalisation and collaboration which were evident in Lead-in 1 and 2. On a more positive note, fewer candidates combined their answers to part b with those of part a, which meant that there was less repetition and more focussed answers. a Weaker candidates described what candidates had to do in the exercises rather than stated their purposes did not consider skills purposes, i.e. reading sub-skills in Read on 1 and 2 did not state what the target language was did not identify how the language input was developed over the exercises, e.g. introduced in Grammar 1 and practised via speaking or writing in the subsequent exercises gave reasons for the purposes, which is not the remit of this part of the task wasted time by listing as many purposes as they could think of produced generic comments from previous Guideline answers, e.g. to prepare students for the next exercise / to allow the teacher to monitor the learners Stronger candidates were more focussed on the language purposes of the exercises and how they progressed from one to the next explicitly stated what the target language was in the text linked the purposes of the individual exercises to that of the extract as a whole focussed their answers to a maximum of four purposes per exercise recognised how the target language was presented (via guided discovery) and how it was practised in different ways recognised the practice of reading sub-skills

b Weaker candidates mentioned the more generic assumptions which exist in most material but were not evident in this sequence of material, e.g. personalisation, integrated skills, collaborative learning, the need for a written record, focus on reading skills, the assumption that the learners already know the language, and catering for a variety of learning styles did not consider the importance of an explicit focus on form, the value of cognitively engaging tasks or the importance of progression in the level of challenge / the use of PPP as a methodological principle of organisation cited language in context as an assumption but referred to the wrong exercise, i.e. the reading text which does not actually contain any examples of the target language but whose purpose is, instead, to generate it in a follow-on practice activity did not give reasons for the assumptions repeated the same reason for more than one assumption gave a very limited rationale / only one reason for each assumption. The most common reasons given were to aid recall / retention, this is how people learn their L1, to motivate / interest the learner, to replicate what happens in the real world, to encourage learner independence, to aid learning. Centres need to spend more time considering the reasons behind the ways material is designed and training their candidates to produce fuller rationales in order to gain maximum marks forgot to indicate which exercises the assumptions were evident in and therefore did not gain any marks for the assumption or reason


Stronger candidates analysed the material in terms of assumptions which were particular to this sequence of published material, especially in terms of how the exercises progressed and built on each other in terms of challenge, why it is important to have explicit rules about language and why the slightly controversial text was included in the material gave a wide range of reasons for the assumptions used the headings of assumption, reasons, exercise to organise their answers and ensure that they included all the required information in the rubric Candidates are recommended to: read the rubric carefully to ensure that they discuss only those exercises specified in the task rubric not assume that they will be asked to discuss the same exercises in part a as in part b and vice versa write several relevant purposes for each exercise in part a note that in part a they should discuss the purpose of the exercises in relation to the purpose of the extract as a whole give two reasons for each assumption to maximise their chances of gaining 3 marks for each assumption and rationale outlined as indicated in the Guideline Answer group their answers together as indicated by the task rubric sections i.e. discuss only purposes in part a, and only assumptions and reasons for them in part b

9.3 9.3.1

Sample Answers

The following sample answer gained almost full marks for this task Purposes A Lead-in 1: * To revise/expand a set of lexical chunks related to the topic. * To clarify their meaning through use of pictures. * To introduce the topic of household chores/family roles Lead-in 2: * To personalise the topic * To engage learners in the topic * To activate schemata about family roles * To provide some speaking practice before the following grammar exercises. * To use the lexical chunks revised/learned in Lead-in 1 in oral production Grammar 1: * To present target language within a context (Mothers opinions) * To Give learners the opportunity to notice grammar rules before going on to complete the rules. * To guide learners discovery of the rules by using short sentences with should/shouldnt which also allows focus on the form rather than focus on the meaning of a longer text. Grammar 2: * To provide personalisation of the target language. * To clarify meaning of should/shouldnt * To provide an opportunity for oral production of the target language. * To provide an opportunity for communication with their partners. Read on 1: * To activate schemata for the reading task in read on 2. * To provide further personalised practice of the target language. Read on 2: * To read the text for detailed information * To further check understanding of target language by asking learners to write sentences. So dont complain in the text becomes she shouldnt complain 2b * The author(s) believes that grammar structures are best presented in context (ex Grammar 1) because this shows how the language is actually used in written/spoken English. It also allows the learner to infer meaning of the target language more easily.

* The author believes that grammar is best learned through guided discovery (ex: Grammar 1). This is because it is thought that learners remember rules better if they are given the opportunity to work them out by themselves. In addition, it help guided discovery helps foster learner autonomy; by encouraging learners to work out these rules they will try to do so in the future with other structures. * The author believes in providing same rule of thumb for the use of should/shouldnt. Although some people feel that learners shouldnt be given concrete rules for modal verb because modality is so subjunctive, they are given here because they can be very helpful for learners, especially at low levels to have some kind of hook. Also, many learners, who are perhaps more used to traditional teaching, feel they are not being taught properly if they are not given rules. * The author believes that a language focus/focus on form is beneficial (ex G1) because it will expand learners range of grammar and focus on it will allow them to become more confident users of the language. In addition many learners enjoy focussing on grammar and request grammar lessons. * The author believes in using visual (ex G1) aids because they help activate schemata which will help learners understanding. They are particularly beneficial for learners with a strong visual intelligence. * The author believes in rule completion (ex G1) because writing rules fixes them in the learners mind more than simply reading rules. It again encourages learner autonomy. * The author believes in developing reading skills (ex R2) because this is highly beneficial for learners. It will improve their lexis, and also provide is a skill many learners need in their future study, careers. (ex R2) * The author believes in reading a text for detailed information as well as global understanding. This is because it develops learners skills at bottom-up as well as top-down processing which will help them with their reading outside class. * The author believes in giving learners a task when reading a text (ex R2) because it fixes their attention and highlights what they should aim to understand in a text. It helps learners stay focussed. * The authors believe in keeping the language focus & reading task (ex G1 and R2) within the topic/theme of the lesson. Learners are far more engaged when they have an interesting topic and as a result are more likely to use/remember the language. It also gives the lesson a sense of coherence.

Examiners comments on sample answer This answer is typical of many in that in part a, the candidate identifies more purposes than there are marks available, i.e. she writes down 12 purposes which are accurate and the maximum number available to be credited is 8. She also outlines more than four purposes per exercise which results in some repetition. However, she fares less well on part b, where she is only able to identify five appropriate assumptions although she lists ten. In both parts of her answer, she discusses the correct exercises as indicated in the rubric and in part a, she explicitly states what the target language is (should/shouldnt / giving opinions) and also refers to reading skills in Read on 1 and 2. In part b, the candidate identifies five appropriate assumptions: the value of language in context; the use of guided discovery; the need for explicit rules about new language / focus on form (repeated three times); the use of visual aids; and the need for learners to have a task to help them read a text. The remaining assumptions of the importance of developing reading skills, reading for detail and centring a lesson around an interesting topic were not key assumptions behind the design of this particular material. The candidate provides fully developed rationale for all of the assumptions. In terms of the organisation of the answer, she does this clearly for part a but would have been advised to use the headings of assumption, example and reason in part b, which might have led her to omit some of the repetition in her answer.


9.3.2 The following sample answer gained under half the marks available for this task A Purpose: Lead-in 1: To introduce the topic of house chores and assess learners knowledge of lexis that will come be used in the following grammar task and reading tasks. To activate schemata on about the context of the language of obligation and recommendations To arouse interest in the topic using pictures. and to refer to learners experience. Lead-in 2: To personalise the context by referring to learners experience. To provide scaffolding for the grammar in the following task. Grammar 1: to stim have learn help Ss notice the TL (target language) and work out the form meaning connection from context. to provide explicit rules for the TL. To introduce the function of opinions and rouse Ss awareness of the use of the TL. Grammar 3: to provide controlled practice of the TL forms to keep intrinsic motivation high by personalizing their choice of whether the l. thinks that sh should or shouldnt be done Read-on 1: To allow students to work collaboratively. To carry on the topic of opinions. To provide a speaking opportunity with the new language. Read-on 2: To show the TL in an authentic context To practice the skill of reading. To further clarify the use of the TL. To make the text comprehensible. 2 b. The authors assumptions are that: 1. Inductive learning or guided discovery is beneficial for the learner because it engages the learner cognitively and aids retention. (Grammar 1) 2. Providing explicit rules is good because it gives the learner a feeling of structure in the language system and learners can refer back to them so become more autonomous. (Grammar 1) 3. Progressing from receptive to productive knowledge aids learning because it is the way L1 is learnt. 4. Explif Showing language in context is good because it makes the TL more meaningful and shows the L. how it is used in real life and this motivating for the learner. (Read-on 2) 5. Integrating other skills into a language lesson is good for the learner as they it grammar and skills are integrated and work on one aids the development of the other as well as a variety of task types input caters for different provides an abundance of input.

6. Scaffolding is good to do in a lesson because it lowers the affective filter and breaks the task down for the L. so they dont feel overwhelmed. It allows the T. to build upon (Read-on 2) existing knowledge.

Examiners comments on sample answer In part a, the candidate has produced full answers and has also clearly stated the target language. Some of the purposes that he includes such as to allow students to work collaboratively, or to make the text comprehensible are too general or generic to be credited. However, again as with the first sample answer, the candidate has made more valid points than can be credited which suggests that

he has spent too long on this part of the task to detriment of part b where he has only correctly identified 3 assumptions: the use of guided discovery; the provision of explicit rules about language; and the importance of scaffolding in the learning process. These three assumptions are also supported by fully developed reasons. He identifies a fourth valid assumption, moving from receptive to productive work, but this could not be credited because it is not supported by reference to an exercise from the text. Integrating skills is not a feature of this particular sequence of material and the reference to showing language in context could not be credited because the wrong exercise is cited, i.e. the text in Read On 2 rather than the sentences that the learners have to write in Grammar 1.

9.3.3 The following sample answer obtained just over half of the marks available for this task 2a Lead-in 1 - to introduce the topic to students and promote interest. - to provide a visul visual stimulus to the target language. - to clarify lexis that students will use in subsequent activities. - to introduce common collocations that are associated with should/shouldnt 2a 2a Lead-in 2 to provide learners with the opportunity to practice lexis and collocations that they will encounter in subsequent activities, to allow for variety of interaction learner interaction in the lesson as a whole. to encourage learners to thing about the past and therefore activate relevant schemata. This mirrors the subject of the reading text learners will encounter. Grammar 1 to allo allow learners to notice the meaning of the target language (should/shouldnt) to provide clarification of target language form. to vary interaction patterns in the lesson. to expose learners to lexis involved in subsequent activities. Grammar 3 to allow learners to restructure target language. to provide practice of written practice of target language. to allo Second part of activity allows learners to have spoken practice of target language. Second part also provides opportunity for pair discussion and varied interaction. to allow learners to personalise target language.

2a Read-on 1 - to provide an introduction to the reading text. - to allow learners to have further practice of target structure. - to provide a model for the next target language to be used in the next activity. Read-on 2 to allow learners to restructure and proceduralise target language. to provide learners with written practice of target language. to expose learners to new lexis and collocations. to provide learners with ideas and stimulus for subsequent activities

2b - that learners require a written definition of meaning of new language (grammar 1) - that language learning occurs when learners are given opportunity to notice form, meaning and use (grammar one). - that learners need an opportunity to personal reformulate and personalise language in order to acquire it (read-on 2). - that learners require an example of the target language they should produce in order to ensure task achievement (read-on 2) - that learners require exposure to a variety of language in different forms and genres (read-on 2) - that opportunity to practise and develop both receptive and productive language skills is integral to language learning (read-on 2). - that learners require have different learning styles and require a varied variety of activity types (grammar 1 + read-on 2)

Examiners comments on sample answer Again, as with the previous two sample answers, in part a this candidate identifies more valid purposes than there are points available, and his answer is overly long. This appears to impact on the time he has available for part b because the assumptions are outlined too briefly without sufficient rationale, which means that he was only awarded two marks for the usefulness of reformulating (i.e. practice) in order to acquire it (language), this reason being sufficient for one mark. There are six other bullet points in his answer, each of which one can assume refers to a different assumption. However, none of these could be credited because they are either inaccurate or not explicit enough. It was unclear to the examiners whether a written definition of meaning of new language was meant as a synonym for rule or that an opportunity to practise and develop both receptive and productive skills was the same as moving from receptive to productive work; the assumption of the value of noticing is not evident in the material, nor was catering for a variety of learning styles or that learners require exposure to a variety of language in different forms. The examiners concluded that the candidate lacked sufficient knowledge of the principles behind the design of material.



Paper 2 Task 3

Comment on the ways in which grammar 2 and 4 and writing 1 and 2 combine with all the exercises discussed in Task Two.

10.1 Guideline Answer EXERCISE grammar 2 HOW EXERCISE COMBINES WITH EXERCISES IN TASK TWO focusses learners on pronunciation features of the TL (introduced in grammar 1) gives controlled / oral practice of the TL focussed on in (grammar 1) provides free(r )/written practice of the TL (from grammar 1) builds on the groupwork done in lead-in 2 / allows learners to build on the ideas that they generated then builds on/extends the topic in the text (in read on 2) allows for learner creativity/personalisation of the topic (as they did in read on 1) provides written and oral practice of should/shouldnt to express their opinions promotes accuracy of TL through writing allows for peer correction and editing provides opportunity for learners to use lexis from lead-in 1 / to use language they may have noticed in the reading text provides freer practice of the target language finishes the lesson off with an activity which recycles the lexis from lead-in 1 and grammar 1 it completes the cycle of personalisation/learner creativity which began in lead-in 2 and continued in read on 1

grammar 4

writing 1

writing 2

10.2 Candidate performance This task continues to challenge candidates with only 40% of the cohort gaining five or more marks for it, this performance being the same as June 2010. Examiners commented that candidate performance depended very much on centre training with some centres performing well on this task and others not. Those candidates who had spent a few minutes actually doing the exercises for themselves were able to see what they generated in terms of language or activity and were then able to refer this back to what had gone before or came after. The answers were generally fuller and more clearly laid out, an indication that the candidates knew what to do but that they were not able to complete the task well because of a lack of knowledge of materials design. Weaker candidates discussed Grammar 1 and Grammar 2 and then Writing 1 and Writing 2 together which made it difficult for the examiners to pinpoint which exercises they were referring to and also meant that they described the purposes of the individual exercises in insufficient detail described what the learners had to do in the exercises described the purpose of the exercises without saying how they combined with one of the exercises in Task Two described how the exercises within Task Three combined with each other gave reasons for the organisation of the material (from Task 2b) without saying how they combined


Stronger candidates made at least two points per exercise, or more recognised the links between the exercises and how they progressed, and therefore worked as a whole. They recognised patterns in the material, for example where personalisation is mirrored in the exercises detailed in the rubric, how group work is built on/extended thought about what language the exercises would produce and where this was introduced, e.g. Writing 1 allows students to use the lexis from Lead-in 1 considered both language aspects of the material AND considered how other features of the material combined, e.g. in terms of the type of practice opportunities provided and how guided they were; when the focus changed from speaking to writing; and the progression of the material Candidates are recommended to: read the rubric carefully and only discuss the exercises they are asked to discuss and no others make sure they discuss how the specific exercises combine with the exercises in Task Two, and do not discuss anything else consider a range of ways exercises can combine, e.g. in terms of language, type of practice, presentation to practice, student interaction patterns, opportunities for personalisation, progression, recycling etc consider each exercise in its own right, and not together with another exercise note that there may be several ways in which each exercise can combine as shown in the Guideline Answer, so they should try to identify more than one way

10.3 Sample Answers 10.3.1 The following sample answer obtained nearly all of the marks available for this task Three Grammar 2 Extends work done on should/shouldnt to pronunciation/production. Practices pronunciation/builds on pronunci Ex 1 by practicing senten saying and pronouncing correctly the language focused on in Grammar 1. Grammar 4 Gives ss practice of writing using the target language introduced in Ex Grammar 1 and the lexis introduced in Lead In 1/2. Gives freer practice of target language and opportunity for personalisation. Maintains the integrated skills approach taken in the other exercises (All Ex). Writing 1 Gives opportunity for learners to apply cond apply the rules for a good housewife to ther from the 1950s to a modern day context. (Ex Read on 2) Allows for personalisation of task as in Ex lead in 2. Gives further practice of target language introduced in all the other exercises (All ex). Extends pairwork (Ex Read on 1) to group work. Writing 2 Extends pairwork Maintains a focus on groupwork introduced in Ex Lead in 2. Extends Gives further language practice of target terms. Maintains integrated skills approach ie skills and language focus in that is practices speaking and reading and writing. Supplements focus on target language with opportunity to use language for giving opinions, agreeing and disagreeing.


Examiners comments on sample answer This answer considers a range of ways that the material combines in terms of language work, the type of practice done, the shift from speaking to writing, the opportunities for personalisation, and extension of the topic. In this way, it covers a good range of points, and also consistently refers back to the exercises discussed in Task 2. 10.3.2 The following sample answer obtained just over half the marks available for this task Gram 2 Gram 4 Writ 1 offers ss the chance to practise pronunciation of form presented in GRAMMAR 1 offers ss the chance to personalise use of should and shouldnt and continue the process of comparison started in GRAMMAR 3 to practise form presented in GRAMMAR 1 to further develop topic presented in GRAMMAR 1 to lead into use ideas generated in reading (READ 2) to practise collocations presented in lead-in 1 to allow students to notice form presented in GRAMMAR 1. to prepare students for topic in reading passage (READ 2) to allow students to compare information and agree or disagree with each other similarly to GRAMMAR 3 and READ ON 1

Writ 2

Examiners comments on sample answer The candidate clearly understands how to approach the task and as with the previous sample answer makes clear reference to previous exercises and how the ones in Task Three build on what has gone before. She considers how the exercises build on each other in terms of language and practice but loses direction when discussing Writing 2. Her first point regarding noticing is inaccurate and the second point describes what the learners have to do rather than identifying the language practice opportunities offered by the exercise or considering how this exercise completes what has gone before.

10.3.3 The following sample answer obtained just under half of the marks available for this task task grammar 2 how it combines with others m makes students aware of the pronunciation of should/shouldnt combines provides students with practice of pronunciation writing 1 writing 2 provides more practice in using should/shouldnt in their own sentences students work in pairs, so they also get some oral practice provides more practice in using should/shouldnt in a different context makes students are exposed to more text using should/shouldnt competitive moment expands the context introduces a competitive moment

grammar 4

Examiners comments on sample answer The candidate understands what is required in the task and she identifies three out of the possible four points for the two grammar exercises although she does not explicitly state which exercises they specifically combine with. However, she struggles with the two writing exercises. In Writing 1, she only considers the practice opportunity offered by the exercise and in Writing 2, she is inaccurate and does not recognise the purposes of this exercise in relation to the ones detailed in the rubric. A lack of experience comes through in this answer.



Paper 2 Task 4

The text for this task is reproduced below. It is a teachers notes from a seminar on text reconstruction activities.

Text Reconstruction Choose a short text slightly above the level of the learners. (The text could be one fairly long sentence or two or three shorter sentences.) Read out the text at natural speed once. Tell the learners to write down the main key words they can remember. Learners work in pairs or groups to try to reconstruct the sentence in writing as accurately as they can. (When they cant remember the exact words they can use their own words.) Finally, learners compare their sentence with the original.

What beliefs about second language learning underlie text reconstruction as described above? For what purposes could the following more traditional dictation technique be used? The teacher reads out a text a few words at a time, pausing to allow learners to write down exactly what was said.

11.1 Guideline Answer A Beliefs about second language learning underlying text reconstruction Exposure to language above the learners level Learners should be exposed to language just above their level (Krashen i + 1) as this will encourage them to learn new language Interactive processing It is important to encourage top down and bottom up processing of text / learners should be shown that they can understand a text without understanding every word before they focus on it in more detail Language in context Learners should be exposed to whole pieces of language / whole texts rather than isolated words Importance of meaning Producing language that conveys the same meaning as the original text is more important than accurately reproducing the original text / It is important to focus on meaning first before focus on form Focus on form/accuracy A (conscious) focus on form/accuracy is important for language learning/prevents fossilisation / Learners need to focus on accuracy in order to improve their output Language production Learning occurs when students produce language / it is important for learners to have the opportunity to produce language Receptive before productive Listening / receptive recognition should precede production of language


Memory Importance of memory in language learning / learners remember better if they hear language Natural speed Learners need to hear speech at natural/normal speed in order to be better able to deal with real language use Integrating skills and language Importance of integrating different skills / integrating skills and language work, which mirrors outside world Cognitive challenge / engagement Struggling with language/negotiating the text helps learners process the language at a deeper cognitive level and so promotes learning Intensive listening There is value in listening to a text for detailed understanding Noticing language Reconstructing the text encourages learners to notice language, which is a precondition for learning / input to become intake (Cognitive learning theory) Noticing the gap Noticing the gap between their output and the original text helps trigger restructuring of learners interlanguage / learners need to be aware of gaps in their own knowledge if their language is to develop Development of lexical to grammatical mode Mirrors the way learners mental grammar develops over time from a mainly lexical mode to a more fully grammaticised one Deep end approach / learner linguistic resources Learners initially use the linguistic resources they have available and are presented with language data later Differentiation It is important to allow for differences in learners / differentiation: allows for learners at different stages of development in their interlanguage to notice different language features Talking about language This is a valuable part of the learning process (declarative vs. procedural knowledge) Teacher control over language input The teacher should retain some control over language input, i.e. s/he chooses the text and can deliberately target structures learners dont know Teacher as facilitator / learner autonomy At times the teacher should take a back seat / act as facilitator / encourage learners to be independent Collaboration Learners learn from each other/importance of collaborative learning

Purposes for a more traditional dictation technique Spelling To test spelling / to develop learners awareness of sound/spelling relationship in English Connected speech To raise learners awareness of features of connected speech (weak forms, contractions, elision, linking etc) Phonological chunking To raise learners awareness of phonological chunking / sense groups Mechanics of writing To raise awareness of punctuation and its relation to spoken language / to practise writing As an integrative test Dictation tests a range of skills, e.g. recognition of individual sounds and words, grouping them into grammatically correct sentences Diagnostic tool As an intensive listening text, it gives the teacher evidence of each learners success and difficulties


Calmer / discipline To calm learners and help maintain discipline i.e. teacher control of topic, activity and pace Confidence Gives learners confidence i.e. they can get a lot right Listening The learners decode the input through attention to content words and activated background knowledge / to give listening practice Task familiarity Students in many cultures are accustomed to traditional dictation / acknowledging learner expectations can motivate them Models of (target) language Dictation is useful to provide models of target language Learner engagement/style To engage learners cognitively / some learners respond well to the puzzle-like quality of traditional dictation / it appeals to different learners, e.g. auditory, analytical Prediction To encourage learners to predict text that follows an utterance / to develop lexical priming Review/test Dictation is useful to revise language previously taught

11.2 Candidate performance The mean score for this task was significantly under half the marks available with only 33% of the cohort gaining 20 or more marks which was even lower than candidate performance in the June 2010 examination. Indeed, the pass rate for this task was the lowest recorded in the history of the Delta examination. As was written in the previous examination report, the reason for poor candidate performance appears to be the result of two factors: time pressure and the choice of topic. In terms of time, candidates frequently did not spend enough time on the task and so lost a large number of marks. In terms of the topic, candidates found the topic of text reconstruction/dictogloss challenging and in some cases, unfamiliar, which meant that those candidates who had a more limited range of teaching experience in different contexts struggled to gain an adequate number of marks. As such, the task operated a good discriminator between stronger and weaker candidates. However, some stronger candidates lost marks because they wrote too much on one point, for example on Krashen 1+1, which meant that over their answer they did not make enough points, although they clearly had the ability to do so. This compared with weaker candidates who made more points superficially but who scored better. On a more positive note, most candidates use the rubric as an organising principle for their answer and divide their answer with the sub-headings of Part A and Part B. Part a Weaker candidates did not refer to beliefs about learning a second language repeated verbatim wording from the extract without specifying the beliefs which underlay the activity or saying why the beliefs were important, i.e. they did not give any rationale for the belief continued to use Part a as an opportunity to refer to teaching approaches or methodologies, particularly the Natural Approach and Second Language Acquisition. They saw the words second language learning in the rubric and took this as an opportunity to apply the whole history of ELT methodology to dictogloss, often inaccurately repeated / rephrased points, particularly in terms of the use of pairwork, the natural speed of speech, Krashens hypothesis of exposing learners to language slightly above their level, and the need to focus on key words to understand a text included generic comments which could relate to any activity, not just text reconstruction, e.g. the need to have engaging activities or varied activities in a lesson, the need for the teacher to monitor learners


Stronger candidates displayed a good range of theoretical and practical knowledge sometimes lost marks because they wrote too much on one point, for example on Krashen 1+1 which meant that they did not make enough points, although they clearly had the ability to do so showed the range of their classroom experience and discussed the value of text reconstruction in terms of providing opportunities for differentiation in the classroom, the development of lexis to grammar, the value of talking about language, the need for learners to produce language in order to learn, the need for learners to meet language in a context, the role of memory in language learning and the value of intensive listening practice Part b Weaker candidates often struggled to find purposes for traditional dictation, thereby showing a lack of familiarity with the use of dictation in the classroom repeated points, particularly in terms of the benefit of dictation for focussing on spelling, practising writing skills, and this being the type of activity that learners might be used to from their previous experience of learning English did not spend enough time on this part of the task and so lost marks Stronger candidates had a good knowledge of how the use of traditional dictation could be beneficial in the classroom and moved beyond the more common points listed above to recognising that dictation can be used as a form of integrative testing and also to develop prediction skills provided a good level of rationale for their points ensured that they included a good range of points in this part of the task and balanced their answers between parts a and b Candidates are recommended to: read the rubric very carefully only provide the information they are asked for about a subject i.e. keep to the point make as many relevant different points, up to a maximum of 20 over the two sections not learn points from previous Guideline Answers which they then apply to this particular task as each Task Four has a different focus and set of requirements prepare for this task by reading a methodology book which covers a range of topics, e.g. Learning Teaching (Scrivener) or The Practice of English Language Teaching (Harmer) allow themselves enough time for both parts of the task refer, where appropriate, to a range of learners and contexts

11.3 Sample Answers 11.3.1 The following sample answer obtained two thirds of the number of marks available for this task a) By choosing a text slightly above the level of the learners, this activity conforms to Krashens input + 1 hypothesis. For acquisition to take place, learners must be exposed to language that is beyond their level. Learners will learn language better if they are involved in a task. Based on the ideas behind TaskBased Learning. In order to spontaneously produce language, learners need to be in a situation in which communication is essential. By providing learners with a reconstruction task, they will talk to each other and produce language naturally. Pairwork and group work is a common feature of Communicative language teaching. By encouraging learners to work together, their affective filter (Krashen) will be lowered, they will also be able to learn from each other.


The belief Another belief underlying pair and group work is based on Humanistic approaches to language teaching. That learners need to feel comfortable and relaxed in order for learning to take place. Noticing is a key belief in this Dictogloss activity . A widely held, current belief is that learning occurs when learners are exposed to particular structures and then encouraged to compare their own interlanguage with the target variety. On the basis of this comparison, learners will revise and modify their inter language accordingly. Dictogloss is also influenced by the Natural Approach This activity is also based on cognitivist learning theories that wen when learners are actively involved in a task, acquisition will take place. This task encourages learners to use linguistic resources they already have. It is often used as a consolidation activity or as part of the more traditional PPP Method coming in the controlled practice or production stage. This task conforms to the idea of a learner-centred classroom. This idea is based on the theory that learners should be intrinsically motivated and for learning or acquisition to take place. By providing learners with a real reason to comm Learning takes place in a classroom in which inductive learning is encouraged. Where the teacher is a facilitator, rather than an expert, learners will be able to discuss and try out new language with support. A belief held by Krashen is that in order for Another key belief is Krashens learning-acquisition theory, that for acquisition to take place, learners must be exposed to com sufficien meaningful input. By reading the text at natural speed, learners are being exposed to an authentic model, which will encourage acquisition. Learner autonomy is vital to second language learning. In order for learners to achieve fluency they must not be too dependent on the teacher. Text reconstruction encourages learner autonomy. Presenting language in context and at text level, rather than sentence level is vital to second language acquisition. In contrast to the audio lingual traditional behaviourist theories, learning is not only based on habit formation. Early approaches, such as the Audio-lingual method, focused on form and meaning at sentence level. However, more recent theories and approaches highlight the importance of discourse analysis (Halliday). Task 4 4 (b) To focus on meaning and form of lexis. To introduce new lexis. As part of a warmer, perhaps as part of a riddle or puzzle in which learners need to find the answer or complete a text. To focus on sound and spelling differences To conform to learner expectations learners with a more traditional learning background my may feel comfortable with traditional dictations. As a lead in to focus on the features of connected speech. The T could use a bottom-up approach First read slowly and pause to allow Ls to write text The re-read same text at natural speed to encourage noticing of features of connected speech (elision/weak forms/assimilation). Finally the T would encourage Ls to practice + produce sentences at natural speed. To reinforce a grammatical structure previously studied. To focus on form over meaning. To give listening practice to very low low level classes. To ensure learners have a written record of a text. To use in a materials light lesson.

Used to To practice the motor-skill of writing forming letters and graphemes. To focus on accuracy To focus Ls attention on features of juncture and word boundaries. To build Ls confidence if Ls have trouble understanding authentic listening texts a traditional dictation would build confidence.

Examiners comments on sample answer Part a The candidate makes seven valid points with a good level of clarity although she could provide less detail and include more points, e.g. with regards to noticing, it is not necessary to outline what it is in so much detail. However, the key area of improvement that she could have made to this answer was to omit the detail on task-based learning, cognitive learning theories, PPP, and a learner centred classroom, which are not particularly relevant to text reconstruction. Part b Here the candidate makes eight pertinent points but she could give more thought to how dictation helps with chunking, acts as an integrative test, focuses on prediction and is useful as a classroom management tool. Again, she could have given less detail on connected speech and it was outside the remit of the rubric to say how she would use the activity to focus on connected speech.

11.3.2 The following sample answer obtained just over half the number of marks available for this task 4 Ss = Students T teachers (1) It is acceptable to give Ss a harder text one above their level because it motivates Ss to stretch themselves. (2) It is acceptable to give a text at slightly higher level if the corresponding tasks are achievable. (3) Ss should be encouraged to listen at natural speech speed so that they are exposed to common features of connected speech e.g. strong and weak forms, assimilation and so forth. (4) Ss should be exposed to natural speed listening in the classroom as this replicates real-life listening which they hear outside the class. (5) Ss should be encouraged to listen for understanding by writing down key words. This aids topdown processing skills. (6) Top-down processing is a useful skill to develop in the L2 classroom replicates real life. (7) Ss need help with developing top-down processing skills have to use explicit tasks to help Ss to do this. (8) 2nd language learning can be stressful (T) need to reduce Ss affective filter by exposing them to natural speed listening, frequently. Frequent exposure will help Ss become more familiar, and helpful to particularly anxious Ss. (9) Collaborative working is conducive to learning L2. (10) When Ss work together it helps to produce = negotiated meaning peer teaching produces speaking can encourage confidence-building for those who benefit from the support of a peer, or those too shy to ask the teacher.


(11) Collaborative learning takes the attention away from the teacher reduces TTT and puts the focus on Ss. This encourages independent skills. (12) These independent skills are important as they can be transferred to other areas. (13) Working in groups, without the aid of the teacher, facilitates deeper cognitive processing which helps to aid memorisation. (14) Some Ss/learners benefit from a deductive approach because it aids cognitive thinking/independence. (15) This approach draws on the communicative approach which places Ss at the forefront T becomes facilitator not direct teacher. Transfer of power in the classroom. (16) Chomsky said that we all have innate structures & in the L2 classroom, by giving Ss these structures they are then free to create their own. This task is referencing some of these ideas language Acquisition Device. (17) It encourages learners to look for differences or error in their work when they check the original text with their own. Again, this is the idea that Ss should have some responsibility for their learning. (18) Checking each others work underlying belief that Ss should be able to identify their own errors. (19) Stds should be encouraged/given opportunity to not focus on every word but the general meaning can be helpful for anxious learners. b For learners who are not confident with connected speech. When there is a focus on accuracy rather than general meaning. When the (T) wants to test the Ss spelling. When the (T) wants to test the Ss punctuation skills For low learners who need more time to assimilate the language For low learners who perhaps are slower at writing. For those learners who have anxiety around listening & the (T) is gradually building up their confidence. To draw attention to certain phone phonemes within the test, without the interference of connected speech. e.g. minimal pairs. When the (T) wants to illustrate the relationship between sounds & spelling, or conversely, the lack of a relationship. When the (T) wants the Ss to identify possible examples of connected speech e.g. where elision is likely to occur.

Examiners comments on sample answer Part a The candidate makes a large number of points in this section but only 6 valid ones. There are instances of repetition, e.g. of the teacher acting as a facilitator (stated three times), the usefulness of pairwork (stated twice) and the fact that it is not necessary for learners to listen out for every word (stated twice). This answer also includes some general comments which are not specific to text construction or relevant, e.g. transference of skills to other areas or the reference to Chomsky. Part b The candidate makes ten points in this section, but only four of them are valid. Again, there is repetition, e.g. the usefulness of dictation to work on spelling and connected speech. The points about dictation being useful for learners who need more time to assimilate the language or who perhaps are slower at writing were not credited because they are not accurate. They also show that the candidate is not very familiar with the reasons for using dictation in the classroom


11.3.3 The following sample answer obtained very few of the marks available for this task 4A Comprehensible input is the best way for learners to aquire language i.e. texts just above learner level. L+1 Agrees with Krashens natural approach to teaching language is acquired and not taught. The order of acquisition is valid. Learners will notice features of language when they are ready. Learners learn L2 in the same order as children learn L1. Languages should not be taught as sets of discrete items. Quality teacher talk is important. The teacher to should speak at natural native speaker speed not slowly for the Ss to catch every word. Learners need to understand the context first to get the meaning of specific items of language. Do this by listening for gist first. You dont need to understand every word to understand a text. Learners dont have to reproduce the exact language they can formulat their own. This is opposed to audio lingual methods. Learners learn through their errors and mistakes can be beneficial to the learning process. Opposed to audio lingualism. This belief became popular in the 60s/70s with humanistic approaches. 4B Useful for low levels where learners are unable to pick out connected speech. For Ss who are intollerant of ambiguity and insist on knowing the meaning of every word. For young learners who are learning on a basic level. To highlight pronunciation of certain separate items If you are using the exercise as a diagnostic spelling test. If you are giving the class specific detailed instructions that they need to get right and follow later. When giving feed back on test answers. With Arabic and Asian students when practising hand writing. Before introducing elements of connected speech the students write down the enunciated sentence then have to change it to natural rhythm and pronunciation themselves. Non native speaking teachers who are not confident of their own pronunciation.

Examiners comments on sample answer Part a Whilst the candidate makes ten points only three of these are valid, i.e. the value of comprehensible input in language acquisition, learners hearing texts at a natural speed, and the fact that it is not necessary to understand every word in order to understand a text. The remainder of the answer either contains unnecessary information, e.g. the points regarding Krashens hypothesis, or is not related to text reconstruction, e.g. learners learning through their mistakes or the need to understand the context first. The examiners noted that the point about learners not having to reproduce the same language was description rather than a belief because there was no reason given for this statement. Part b The candidates response to this section is also full but there are only three points which could be credited: using dictation to work on spelling; to practise handwriting; and to focus on features of connected speech. The other points are not specific to dictation or accurate, e.g. to give feedback on a test, for young learners, for learners who want to know the meaning of every word, to give the class instructions, and for non native speaking teachers who are not confident of their own pronunciation. The absence of valid points in this answer reflects the candidates lack of knowledge and/or experience of using dictation in the classroom.