xkate
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I am struggling with english literature so much. We just started reading Inspector Calls and so far so good. However, when I think of the essay and how much you will have to write in the exam I get so scared Is there a special essay format or structure that i could memorise and use for all type of questions? For example I have a question for homework that asks,'Compare how the Inspector and Birling are presented in act 1'? It doesn't have to be long but i have no idea how to start it or conclude it..my mind is blank.
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neriine
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Don't panic! Your best move right now is to practice, and make notes. Make a profile for each character and explore how they are presented through each act of the play - once you have this, any character question should be a piece of cake.
With the essays, take a few minutes to plan out four or five points before you start. Make one point a paragraph, and sum up your points in the conclusion. The conclusion should answer the question - in your homework question, that would be how similar/different the presentations of the Inspector and Birling are in act 1 - and recap the points you made in the essay.
Start the essay by saying how you are going to explore the question: e.g. 'In the first Act of 'An Inspector Calls', comparisons can be made between how the author depicts the Inspector and Mr Birling.'
This might be teaching you to suck eggs, but also try and keep away from using 'I' in any essay question. Even if it doesn't help too much now, getting into the habit will improve your essays and set you up well for any other essay subjects you do.
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Hal.E.Lujah
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Definitely all about practice essays. I know they seem daunting now, but you'll be surprised how much sinks in from lessons.

What I tend to do is write down everything I know about the book/question in one long ramble. Then, I read through and highlight the points that are good or relevant.

Then I write out those points in an essay and tadah! A good essay. If you then get to the exam and have a question you didnt prepare for, you think back to that big long ramble and write out the points.

Hope that helps
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German123
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(Original post by xkate)
I am struggling with english literature so much. We just started reading Inspector Calls and so far so good. However, when I think of the essay and how much you will have to write in the exam I get so scared Is there a special essay format or structure that i could memorise and use for all type of questions? For example I have a question for homework that asks,'Compare how the Inspector and Birling are presented in act 1'? It doesn't have to be long but i have no idea how to start it or conclude it..my mind is blank.
I suggest you go on Mr Bruff on youtube because he has some fab stuff on of mice and men(assuming he has some fab stuff on inspector calls too so check that out) Also take every bit of help you are given form your English department at school for example go to English boosters and as your teacher to help you.
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Calum.McManus
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I can't offer you any help, but if it makes you feel better, I am currently doing night classes for English Lit as I failed it at school twice, yup, I redid the GCSE during sixth form and failed it again and now I work and have to go to night classes to get it before I go to uni and even now I am gettings low C grades in coursework.
And I am not just another high school drop out, I have 12 GCSE's, but I just can't get my head around English Lit, stuff makes no sense :/
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Firthy38
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In order to save time when revising I would not recommend full reading and analysing each book until you can recall it. Instead, I would recommend finding a few key parts of each book and analyse them in more detail. Look at some past paper Q's to get a feel of what they ask. Then in the exam look to make a point fit. I also can advise focusing on the fundamentals (i.e. if its a play, focus on stage directions, it shows a strong attention to detail and a surprising amount if students miss it). Also, focus on the PEEL (Point, Evidence, Explain, Link) structure to ensure your essay is coherent and easy for the examiner to read; they'll love you if you save them time. Some aspects of the question ask you to focus on the impact on society (An Inspector Calls was mentioned, this is one of those occasions). This is an area where you can obtain easy marks by simply using a bit of common sense and recalling a couple of basic points about the time. Whilst it isn't fully guaranteed, (as I learnt last year!) look back at the past papers for frequently/rarely asked topics.
Hope this helps

This worked for me as I got an A* without much of a flair for the subject.
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