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    Wow juxtapixed, great post, have some rep!
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    (Original post by clockworkapples)
    I thought you were supposed to bring in as little from outside as possible because they are testing your skills rather than anything else and thats why you get such a range of things. They dont want you to look stuff up about Dickens or whatever, thats not the point. Well thats what my class have been taught anyway.

    Im hoping for a poem. They are really easy to analyse quickly IMO. I would HATE Duffy though. Ugh.
    You certainly shouldn't look things up or research things; what I meant was you should use your own experiences of literature outside of school that you've had and not just any texts you've studied at school.
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    Does anyone know how much the synoptic paper is worth in terms of the whole A level?
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    120 UMS of the total 300 for A2; so 120/600 overall; so 20%
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    As I understood it, since January 2004, they slightly changed the strusture and forcus of this paper. Before, there were four questions equalling 80 marks, with the first three relating specifically to the items provided and links between them. At this time they also provided you with a great many more items to analyse. The final question would then ask you to bring in your own wider reading in a more general question.

    However, since many candidates struggled with this style final question they decided to make the focus entirely upon the pre release and the unseen extract. Therefore, there are just 2 questions of 40 marks each, the first relating to Item One and the unseen and the other with relevance to the other 2 or 3 items. There is no specific question that requires wider reading anymore I think.

    This was the impression my class received. I've also since all the past paers since Jan 04 and prior to then and it does suggest this is the case.

    To be honest, although a wider reading question does give an opportunity to provide a personal response and interpret your reading within a wider context, I personally think that within the time constraints and pressures of the exam, writing a question such as this would be far too broad and I would probably waste too much time planning and considering my response. It is the sort of question I would love to sink my teeth into for, say a homework or coursework task where there is sufficient time to consolidate what you know from your wider reading and how it can relate to a wider theme.
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    Yes I got this exact impression too. There are now 2 questions, with the first asking you to compare the language, form and structure of Item 1 and the unseen material. The second question, usually with a couple of bullet points, asks you to explore contexts relating to the other Items etc; although I'm unsure as to whether this second question includes every thing you've got, all the Items and unseen material etc; surely that would be impossible!? Also I'm unsure as to the importance of outside reading?
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    (Original post by Annik)
    i think poetry too!! I HATE POETRY!
    i want drama!
    don't worry, as long as you remember the headings:

    1) language - imagery to convey meanings, themes, whether it uses vernacualr language (syntax) - good word to use! basically meaning the local language

    2) form- what genre it is
    3) structure- individual lines, how many stanzas, is there an argument? etc.

    as long as you remember those three headings, you should be fine


    if anyone else has anything to add to those three headings that would be useful, it would be greatly appreciated to let us know!
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    (Original post by White_redrose)
    Does anyone know how much the synoptic paper is worth in terms of the whole A level?
    15% i think? i think the poetry and drama was 15% as well or something along with the coursework
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    (Original post by monkiwrensh)
    Just thought I would start this thread for people to discuss the Unit 6 English Lit B Pre Release material issued tomorrow...
    hi - what's pre release material ?
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    If you dont know what it is then (hopefully) you dont need it! Are you sure you're doing spec B AQA? Its a booklet of extracts that you get a week before the Unit 6 exam to study and then talk about in the exam.

    Ive been looking over old exam papers on the internet and it does seem as though the exam has changed. Thank god in my opinion, I dont think I'd do well at a Question 4 under exam conditions. Its the kind of thing I'd like to ponder. Also they now seem to tell you which AOs apply to which question which seems good. And they tell you how much each question is worth, unlike before, which will give you a better idea of how much to write. Thats what I hated about last years introduction to literature paper - they didnt give you the marks for each so you just had to assume that each question was worth the same. Why try and confuse us? Is it not hard enough already!?
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    The synoptic paper is definately worth 20% of the final A level grade.
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    Has anyone had a chance to look at language/form and structure yet?

    I'm kind of lost. Can anyone help?
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    Please reassure me, this is a hard exam isn't it? It's not just me who thinks this exam is pretty difficult is it? Argghhh!
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    Does anyone know what Brimstone and Treacle is? I'm assuming it's some sort of medicine?

    Also.. Mr Squeer says words like creetur and bottinney.. is this just showing that he doesn't really know anything?
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    (Original post by ryry)
    Does anyone know what Brimstone and Treacle is? I'm assuming it's some sort of medicine?

    Also.. Mr Squeer says words like creetur and bottinney.. is this just showing that he doesn't really know anything?
    Apparently brimstone and treacle was a mixture of sulphur and treacle, used as a medicine which caused vomiting

    Mr Squeer says words like creetur, bottinney, winder etc. and I guess it either could be interpreted as Yorkshire dialect, or ignorance (as Mr Squeer spells bottinney and winder incorrectly and in Extract C in the pre-release material Dickens says that Mr Squeer is representative of the "ignorance" of teachers). Any thoughts?
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    With regard to the extra reading part....its not definately going to come up, is it? i mean, it might do, but it'll be only one bullet point of the question, and you're not expected to have done any extra reading for it, tho you might just be required just to give a few examples from books on the course, poems uve studied etc (but not in a lot of detail).... but looking at recent exam papers, they tend not to have been asking about your extra reading. i know one did, with regard to genre, but they're not going to ask anything related specifically to educational experiences, i.e. books with similar themes, because some ppl might have an unfair advantage, if they'd studied say, jane eyre or something. so bascially, if they DO ask for reference to other books, (which i don't think they will...as someone said before it looks like they've stopped asking) it'll be a very broad question i think, i.e. nothing to worry about

    ...and the treacle substance is sulphur designed to stop the kids feeling hungry
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    Is just me or is part of what you have to do particularly with the critical viewpoints, is to analyse them as they stand, so to speak? or instance with the Lively one, one could debate on the merits of childhood reading, whether it really is that beneficial, how it influences or indeed stifles the meaning that one deriebes from the text? This is mainly something that could come up on the bullet points...comparing the way contexts have influenced Dickens the writer ie extract C and the reader in the Lively extract and how useful they are in interpreting teh texts.
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    (Original post by Juxtapiped)
    Please reassure me, this is a hard exam isn't it? It's not just me who thinks this exam is pretty difficult is it? Argghhh!
    It is! & no, it isn't just you - I think it's a pretty difficult exam too...I'm not looking forward to it, much as I love Nicholas Nickleby!
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    Is anyone else really finding it hard to analyse the booklet? I just feel a bit overwhelmed - have other exams to focus on too. This is a resit and I did so badly in January that I am determined to prepare really thoroughly. Has anyone found any good webpages?

    Oh, and as for the questions, the structure is (based on the january questions):
    1 - compare and contrast how the authors present (common theme) in both extracts,
    2 - to what extent does item 2 help your understanding
    - author of item 3 says "bla bla bla", do you agree? refer to your wider reading of other texts.
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    My class recently went to a synoptic conference organised by the chief examiner and she didnt explicitly state that there would be no 'question 4'. I got the impression that it may be there, or it may not be. If it is, I very much doubt it will be to do with educational experiences. My guess would either be the use of satire in literature or the relevence of historical context (with reference to the Lively autobiography).

    I'd also put good money on one of the previous questions being something along the lines of 'how far do you agree that the effectivness of Dicken's social criticism is undermined by his use of humour?'

    As far as question 1 goes, myself and some friends have had some ideas but it'd be good if other people had some more suggestions. I currently have:

    1) The use of the narrator which blurs between fisrt and third person. At times we appear to be infiltrating Nicholas' mind, yet paradoxially the narrator remains a distinct entity. We have a suble double relay of information where we think that we are seeing the events from Nicholas' eyes, whereas actually we are only getting insight into the moments that the narrator arbitrarily chooses to show us.

    2) The novel form. Diagetic and mimetic language are combined to emphasise the humour - in a play or poem part of the humour would be lost. Novel also allows for experimentation with narrator.

    3) The structure - the listing technique employed in the third paragraph builds up a creschendo of mood which is released by the subsequent use of bathos with the humour of the 'treacling'. The last paragraph highlights the cyclic nature of events and enhances the claustrophobic atmosphere.

    4) Language - theological imagery (especially from the garden of eden and the fall of man) highlights the moral antithesis between Mr and Mrs Sqeers and the boys. References to 'insipient hell' and 'brimstone' reinforce the hellish atmosphere of the school. The paradox of 'mercinary nurses' juxtaposes the cruelty of the Sqeers and the innocence of their victims.The justice semantic field is used to highlight the injustice suffered. There two fields of imagery are juxtaposes to refelect divine and secular punishments. Use of repetition and alliteration to emphasises certain phrases.

    5) Setting - acts as a pathetic fallacy. The desription of the classroom anticipates and enhances the suffering of its inhabitants.

    6) Humour - use of hyperbole is prevelent. The desriptions are often exaggerated and the cruelty is often bridging on ridiculous (such as wiping her hands on the boys hair). The use of irony is almost constant. Mr Squeer's ignorence and the phrase 'grasciously permitted' are good examples.

    What do you think? Any other help would be greatly appreciated. Good luck everyone!
 
 
 
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