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    What kind of technique do people use to answer the questions? Like I am perfectly fine with content and understanding. But in terms of answering the questions, the highest I recieve on my practice questions is 16/17 out of 25 so low Band 4. Any resources or how to structure an essay answer would be really helpful!

    (This is for those studying Love through the ages (Gatsby & Poems) and WWII and its aftermath (Prose texts).

    I would do 3-4 paragraphs with each containing a small counterargument (Try to indicate this clearly through words such as 'alternatively', 'conversely', etc.). Use sentence starters such as 'This is significant because' as this will clearly indicate to the examiner why what you have said is relevant and important. In addition, when people talk about literary context they often want to know about the text's typicality as well as how the period in which it was written has shaped the text, so be sure to use overt sentence starters such as 'this is (a)typrical because....'. Also, stick firmly to the point and address this clearly in your first sentence.

    So a paragraph might have the following structure:

    1) It can definitely (or not) be said that AUTHOR presents THEME as ______
    2) Briefly introduce and then insert quotation
    3) The author's use of X and Y indicate.....
    4) This is significant because....
    5) This might suggest that.....
    6) Alternatively, the use of X might indicate.....
    7) If we take this interpretation then the text may be seen as (a)typical....

    Or something like that.

    As a bonus tip (this relates more to content than structure), examiners love when you talk about more complex grammatical structures and how they relate to meaning. If you do a language A-level this is much easier to do, but if not, doing a bit of extra reading around grammar helps. So for instance, I did WW1 as one of my topics and noted how both of the authors (one of them was Wilfred Owen) that I was studying used present participles to lengthen verbs associated with suffering and therefore to slow the tone and rhythm of the poem.
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Updated: November 13, 2017
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