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    i really struggle with the answers to questions in biology papers. The questions are so vague and they expect precise answers. When there is an answer to a question i do know, i tend to mention all the points i know about it to fear losing any marks because i dont know what they want. this results in loss of time at the end and so i end up not finishing the paper.

    So are there any Successful biologists out there that could help? :confused:
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    try looking at lots of mark schemes for past papers to see what they are after so you get the hang of it...look at the command word in the question (describe, explain, etc)

    i tend to just write in bullet points a lot of the time now, even on the long answer questions - to get hte QWC mark you have to have spelt "biology" right or something silly like that! be precise and revise well and you should be fine. if there is an ambiguous question in the exam just do as you do at the moment and write everything down!

    Hmm only thing is that for the long questions with QWC marks in them, I don't think you get the QWC mark if you write in bullet points. You are meant to write in full sentences for that one.

    But yeah bullet points for the others, and it never hurts to chuck in as much vaguely relevant terminology or facts as you can get in for any quetsion - very often there are marks for this - even though it's not what the question asks for! Stupid!

    rosie
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    (Original post by crana)
    Hmm only thing is that for the long questions with QWC marks in them, I don't think you get the QWC mark if you write in bullet points. You are meant to write in full sentences for that one.

    rosie
    you do - the chief examiner guy said! as long as you write coherently, with a "capital letter and full stop for each sentence", using correct scientific terms with good spelling and grammar.
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    I think in a reply to teachers in an examiner's report they said they would consider the QWC mark even if bullet points were used as candidates performed better using bullet points.
    The actual thing is something stupid like "two sentences with proper spelling and grammar".

    I have never answered in bullet points though I might do so this time as last time I was very short for time....
    Do you guys actually just bullet it totally? Don't the sentences end up quite disjointed then?

    Best advice is to think of the key words. If you hit the keywords you'll be awarded the mark so make sure you know them. Many a time in practice papers I've said something which is perfectly correct but I didn't hit the keyword so i didn't get the mark (maybe my teacher just marks harsh though?)

    Good luck

    (Original post by allisandro)
    you do - the chief examiner guy said! as long as you write coherently, with a "capital letter and full stop for each sentence", using correct scientific terms with good spelling and grammar.
    So, basically, putting bullet points in front of what are otherwise normal, full, grammatical sentences...

    in which case you may as well skip the bullet points!

    rosie
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    (Original post by crana)
    So, basically, putting bullet points in front of what are otherwise normal, full, grammatical sentences...

    in which case you may as well skip the bullet points!

    rosie
    well no i find i write more like...um...embryo transplantation occurs in the following steps

    -hormones administered
    -super ovulation occurs

    etc so it's not all bullet points but gets the marking points across without having to put in the flowery language if you see what i mean.
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    (Original post by dream3r)
    i really struggle with the answers to questions in biology papers. The questions are so vague and they expect precise answers. When there is an answer to a question i do know, i tend to mention all the points i know about it to fear losing any marks because i dont know what they want. this results in loss of time at the end and so i end up not finishing the paper.

    So are there any Successful biologists out there that could help? :confused:
    Isn't your problem chosing the appropriate answer for a question that appears to be totally irrelevant and unrelated to any concepts you've ever learnt?
    What examination board are you with?

    (Original post by allisandro)
    well no i find i write more like...um...embryo transplantation occurs in the following steps

    -hormones administered
    -super ovulation occurs

    etc so it's not all bullet points but gets the marking points across without having to put in the flowery language if you see what i mean.
    but that does not fit "with a "capital letter and full stop for each sentence", " which you said you needed for QWC...

    I would put something like thatfor a "normal" question but for one with QWC i would put like

    "First, hormones such as xxx are administered; following this, superovulation occurs"

    or something similar. i dont hink bullet points like the ones you put would get you QWC marks

    rosie
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    (Original post by crana)
    but that does not fit "with a "capital letter and full stop for each sentence", " which you said you needed for QWC...

    I would put something like thatfor a "normal" question but for one with QWC i would put like

    "First, hormones such as xxx are administered; following this, superovulation occurs"

    or something similar. i dont hink bullet points like the ones you put would get you QWC marks

    rosie

    every mark scheme is slightly different for QWC if you have a look, but as long as it's coherent it's fine. i think it was my chemistry one said "2 sentences with..." but others have said "include biological terms spelt correctly". we had a question and answer session with the chief examiner, he said he encouraged writing in bullet points because answers are often clearer. his exact words were "it's only 1 mark, you'll cover it in bullet points." but whatever works for you.

    (Original post by allisandro)
    every mark scheme is slightly different for QWC if you have a look, but as long as it's coherent it's fine. i think it was my chemistry one said "2 sentences with..." but others have said "include biological terms spelt correctly". we had a question and answer session with the chief examiner, he said he encouraged writing in bullet points because answers are often clearer. his exact words were "it's only 1 mark, you'll cover it in bullet points." but whatever works for you.
    fair enough. It was just very inconsistent between what you said you had been told was needed for the QWC mark, and what you put as your examples. but hey. rosie.
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    (Original post by crana)
    fair enough. It was just very inconsistent between what you said you had been told was needed for the QWC mark, and what you put as your examples. but hey. rosie.
    i realise i was inconsistent. but there are different guidelines for different papers. what i was trying to emphasise was that when they say quality of written communication, it doesn't seem to match to what i would call quality writing, if you see what i mean. and when i found out that you don't have to write in full prose, i found it easier to get the key points in. was only trying to help

    (Original post by allisandro)
    i realise i was inconsistent. but there are different guidelines for different papers. what i was trying to emphasise was that when they say quality of written communication, it doesn't seem to match to what i would call quality writing, if you see what i mean. and when i found out that you don't have to write in full prose, i found it easier to get the key points in. was only trying to help
    hehe, ok, sorry.

    good luck for biology this summer.....may we all get lots of QWC marks
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    (Original post by crana)
    hehe, ok, sorry.

    good luck for biology this summer.....may we all get lots of QWC marks
    i can just imagine my dream question.

    "discuss the ethical implications of genetic engineering" [1]

    NB 8 marks will be available for quality of written communication

    lol. what optional module are you taking?

    (Original post by allisandro)
    i can just imagine my dream question.

    "discuss the ethical implications of genetic engineering" [1]

    NB 8 marks will be available for quality of written communication

    lol. what optional module are you taking?
    haha, yeah

    applications of genetics (edexcel), you?

    rosie
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    (Original post by crana)
    haha, yeah

    applications of genetics (edexcel), you?

    rosie
    same but ocr. it's quite interesting actually! nice pictures in the textbook too. (thinks of the one with the man with his arm up a horse).

    (Original post by allisandro)
    same but ocr. it's quite interesting actually! nice pictures in the textbook too. (thinks of the one with the man with his arm up a horse).
    yeah.. its ok, but i find memorising the details of various farming procedures kind of boring..

    i think we have the same picture

    rosie
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    (Original post by zazy)
    Isn't your problem chosing the appropriate answer for a question that appears to be totally irrelevant and unrelated to any concepts you've ever learnt?
    What examination board are you with?
    im with OCR - its not the selection coz i tend to learn all key concepts - i dont get anything lower than a C - i jus need to improve it thats all
    im sitting the Mammalian Physiology and Behaviour Module this Summer! i wud be so happy if i got a B overall!

    THANKS FOR ALL YOUR HELP GUYS!!
 
 
 
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