Answering 6 mark questions.....? GCSE Science Watch

Perfection Ace
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Hey, can anyone tell me a technique of answer the 6 mark questions which are applicable for AQA type of questions please. My physics teacher said that because I used a wrong word, that completely ruined my chances of getting a full 6/6 answer. (question about ultrasound - I said they create images blah blah, *apparently create was the wrong word*) Please help thanks!
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CaptErin
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That seems a bit picky to me :hmmm:. Are you talking about the June 2015 AQA P3 paper?

If you take a look at a mark scheme for the advice on a six mark question, the awards are given in levels (1, 2 and 3). A level one response (1-2 marks) shows basic knowledge, a level two response (3-4 marks) shows accurate knowledge, and a level three response (5-6 marks) shows accurate knowledge appropriately contextualised. In most cases, this means they want you to link every point you make with a reason. So for the June 2015 question, they want a use, the risk and an associated precaution; the main difference between level 2 and 3 is the ability to expand on the point. (If your school uses PEE, it's a bit like 1 = P, 2 = PE, and 3 =PEE).

Then, below the section where the minimum requirements for each level is laid out, theres a list of example points. These are the ideal points to make because they'll be the ones an examiner's looking for, but there are other correct responses and examiners are encouraged to award marks for these, too. The mark scheme for this particular question (not sure if it's the one you have in mind) states 'Imaging (a named body part)' and has no guidelines for points to specifically ignore, so I see no reason why it wouldn't have been allowed (however I am not an examiner so I suppose the teacher knows more!).

So my tips for 6 mark questions would be to put down as much as you know, but recognise that what they expect you to write is usually far less than you realise - for this June 2015 question, the guideline for a 6 mark response was, 'At least one medical use is given for both types of wave linked to the risks and any precautions necessary'. It is always important to expand upon each statement if you're aiming for a top band response, giving reasons why if nothing is explicitly stated as expansion. You should never need to use the extra space provided to gain full marks, so don't overly focus on creating a well-worded response, as a Level 3 response is simply 'coherent and in an organised, logical sequence', with 'almost faultless spelling'.

It may be that your teacher felt you hadn't used enough 'relevant specialist terms' required for a six mark response by using 'creates'? Anyway, I hope this helps I'm doing GCSEs myself and just posted a question about how mark schemes work, so I might not be the best source, but working on these tips has gotten me 6 marks in the past. Don't overthink it, I'm sure you'll do great
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Perfection Ace
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(Original post by CaptErin)
That seems a bit picky to me :hmmm:. Are you talking about the June 2015 AQA P3 paper?

If you take a look at a mark scheme for the advice on a six mark question, the awards are given in levels (1, 2 and 3). A level one response (1-2 marks) shows basic knowledge, a level two response (3-4 marks) shows accurate knowledge, and a level three response (5-6 marks) shows accurate knowledge appropriately contextualised. In most cases, this means they want you to link every point you make with a reason. So for the June 2015 question, they want a use, the risk and an associated precaution; the main difference between level 2 and 3 is the ability to expand on the point. (If your school uses PEE, it's a bit like 1 = P, 2 = PE, and 3 =PEE).

Then, below the section where the minimum requirements for each level is laid out, theres a list of example points. These are the ideal points to make because they'll be the ones an examiner's looking for, but there are other correct responses and examiners are encouraged to award marks for these, too. The mark scheme for this particular question (not sure if it's the one you have in mind) states 'Imaging (a named body part)' and has no guidelines for points to specifically ignore, so I see no reason why it wouldn't have been allowed (however I am not an examiner so I suppose the teacher knows more!).

So my tips for 6 mark questions would be to put down as much as you know, but recognise that what they expect you to write is usually far less than you realise - for this June 2015 question, the guideline for a 6 mark response was, 'At least one medical use is given for both types of wave linked to the risks and any precautions necessary'. It is always important to expand upon each statement if you're aiming for a top band response, giving reasons why if nothing is explicitly stated as expansion. You should never need to use the extra space provided to gain full marks, so don't overly focus on creating a well-worded response, as a Level 3 response is simply 'coherent and in an organised, logical sequence', with 'almost faultless spelling'.

It may be that your teacher felt you hadn't used enough 'relevant specialist terms' required for a six mark response by using 'creates'? Anyway, I hope this helps I'm doing GCSEs myself and just posted a question about how mark schemes work, so I might not be the best source, but working on these tips has gotten me 6 marks in the past. Don't overthink it, I'm sure you'll do great
Wow! Thank you so much for this!! And yes, it was the June 2015 paper. Damn, thanks so much for this!

Oh and btw my exact answer for that question was : "Ultrasound: is used to create images within the body, similarly to x-rays. However, x-rays are absorbed by bones (and metal) and therefore turns white when it is placed against a photographic film (film turns black along with any other non-bone material). Whereas with ultrasound, it used 20,000 Hz and shoots them into the specified body part. However, with ultrasound, these rays are partially reflected at different mediums (or densities). This continued process builds up an image. In addition, the primary risk with x-rays is that it is ionising and can cause cancer whereas with ultrasound it is non-ionising. Furthermore, x-rays require a precaution of minimum exposure as well as lead shielding. However, ultrasounds do not. Furthermore, x-rays are used for harder, firmer tissue, whereas ultrasound is used for both soft and hard."

She gave me 2 marks for this answer. Maybe you could mark this answer for me please? .

Anyways, thanks a lot!!
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CaptErin
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(Original post by Perfection Ace)
Wow! Thank you so much for this!! And yes, it was the June 2015 paper. Damn, thanks so much for this!

Oh and btw my exact answer for that question was : "Ultrasound: is used to create images within the body, similarly to x-rays. However, x-rays are absorbed by bones (and metal) and therefore turns white when it is placed against a photographic film (film turns black along with any other non-bone material). Whereas with ultrasound, it used 20,000 Hz and shoots them into the specified body part. However, with ultrasound, these rays are partially reflected at different mediums (or densities). This continued process builds up an image. In addition, the primary risk with x-rays is that it is ionising and can cause cancer whereas with ultrasound it is non-ionising. Furthermore, x-rays require a precaution of minimum exposure as well as lead shielding. However, ultrasounds do not. Furthermore, x-rays are used for harder, firmer tissue, whereas ultrasound is used for both soft and hard."

She gave me 2 marks for this answer. Maybe you could mark this answer for me please? .

Anyways, thanks a lot!!
I'm so glad it helped! I'm no expert at marking, but I think that's a decent answer:
- Ultrasounds: use, 'creates images within the body', risk, 'ultrasound is non-ionising', precaution, implied by statement that ultrasounds are non-ionising.
- X-Rays: use, 'is used to create images within the body', risk, 'it is ionising' (expanded by 'can cause cancer'), precaution, 'minimum exposure'.

I think where you may have been limited is with the uses; you could use a more obvious statement on the use of x-rays as they're asking for something more specific, such as 'detecting bone fractures' or 'CT scanning', and the same goes for ultrasounds, where they really wanted something like 'pre-natal scanning' (or a specific body part where imaging is used).

However, there is no way that should have been limited to two marks because the guideline for two marks is, 'At least one relevant statement is given for either type of wave' and the guideleine for 3-4 marks is 'a use, risk and precaution is given for one type of wave', so regardless of whether or not they agree with 'create images within the body' as a use for x-rays, you should have gotten four marks at least for giving a valid use, risk and precaution for ultrasounds.

I think I'd give you 4-5 marks, mostly because the use needs to be more explicit, and there might be a few errors in grammar. Just work on making your points more obvious because you clearly have the knowledge required for 6 marks Hope that helps!
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Perfection Ace
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(Original post by CaptErin)
I'm so glad it helped! I'm no expert at marking, but I think that's a decent answer:
- Ultrasounds: use, 'creates images within the body', risk, 'ultrasound is non-ionising', precaution, implied by statement that ultrasounds are non-ionising.
- X-Rays: use, 'is used to create images within the body', risk, 'it is ionising' (expanded by 'can cause cancer'), precaution, 'minimum exposure'.

I think where you may have been limited is with the uses; you could use a more obvious statement on the use of x-rays as they're asking for something more specific, such as 'detecting bone fractures' or 'CT scanning', and the same goes for ultrasounds, where they really wanted something like 'pre-natal scanning' (or a specific body part where imaging is used).

However, there is no way that should have been limited to two marks because the guideline for two marks is, 'At least one relevant statement is given for either type of wave' and the guideleine for 3-4 marks is 'a use, risk and precaution is given for one type of wave', so regardless of whether or not they agree with 'create images within the body' as a use for x-rays, you should have gotten four marks at least for giving a valid use, risk and precaution for ultrasounds.

I think I'd give you 4-5 marks, mostly because the use needs to be more explicit, and there might be a few errors in grammar. Just work on making your points more obvious because you clearly have the knowledge required for 6 marks Hope that helps!
Ahaha great! I'm happy with that! Thank you so much!!
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