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Should GCSE English Language be more SPAG-based?

Currently, GCSE English Language is focused on interpreting & analysing unseen texts and creative writing; only 20% of marks are allocated to SPAG.
Those who browse TSR frequently will often spot grammatical errors from various anons on this site. This reflects negatively on the quality of education in this country, although anons may not be the best representation of the general populace.
Yes!
20% is enough.
Reply 3
I just learned what SPAG means and it’s not spaghetti. Although I would like all subjects to be more spaghetti based.
Original post by hungrysalamander
Currently, GCSE English Language is focused on interpreting & analysing unseen texts and creative writing; only 20% of marks are allocated to SPAG.
Those who browse TSR frequently will often spot grammatical errors from various anons on this site. This reflects negatively on the quality of education in this country, although anons may not be the best representation of the general populace.


Nah think the it's fine the way it is but I would support separate English exams that test spelling and grammar and actively discourage text speak/words like "gonna", "gotta", "rly", "ain't", "wanna", "aight" when writing and sending emails and in professional/educational settings etc (seen teachers, politicians etc use some of these words).
(edited 1 year ago)
That being said I'll still use some of those words 😅 (online of course, not when texting or writing an email or speaking to someone).
Original post by Talkative Toad
Nah think the it's fine the way it is but I would support separate English exams that test spelling and grammar and actively discourage text speak/words like "gonna", "gotta", "rly", "ain't", "wanna", "aight" when writing and sending emails and in professional/educational settings etc (seen teachers, politicians etc use some of these words).

I did have a similar idea after making this thread. I would merge questions 1-4 from both papers into 1 and call it comprehension or something like that, both question 5’s into another paper called writing and a new paper for SPAG.
Original post by hungrysalamander
I did have a similar idea after making this thread. I would merge questions 1-4 from both papers into 1 and call it comprehension or something like that, both question 5’s into another paper called writing and a new paper for SPAG.


Yeah that could work, just fear that it might be too many questions in 1 paper though (for paper 1).
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by Talkative Toad
Yeah that could work, just fear that it might be too many questions in 1 paper though (for paper 1).


Nah it will still be 80 marks in total.
Original post by hungrysalamander
Nah it will still be 80 marks in total.


True, tbh don't really like the way that English exams are done anyway (biased here). But yeah definitely needs to be a separate paper for SPaG
Original post by hungrysalamander
Currently, GCSE English Language is focused on interpreting & analysing unseen texts and creative writing; only 20% of marks are allocated to SPAG.
Those who browse TSR frequently will often spot grammatical errors from various anons on this site. This reflects negatively on the quality of education in this country, although anons may not be the best representation of the general populace.


GCSE English Language was the most tedious, mind numbingly boring GCSE that I've ever had the displeasure of sitting, so much so that it defeats the object of sitting the damn qualification in the first place. Most of it seems geared towards hitting a mark scheme more than anything else, rather than interpretation and argumentation.

Regarding your question about whether SPAG should be increased in the paper, I think definitely so. The amount of native speakers who cannot distinguish between the proper uses of "they're, their, and there" is ridiculous and infuriating.
Original post by BarnabyK
GCSE English Language was the most tedious, mind numbingly boring GCSE that I've ever had the displeasure of sitting, so much so that it defeats the object of sitting the damn qualification in the first place. Most of it seems geared towards hitting a mark scheme more than anything else, rather than interpretation and argumentation.

Regarding your question about whether SPAG should be increased in the paper, I think definitely so. The amount of native speakers who cannot distinguish between the proper uses of "they're, their, and there" is ridiculous and infuriating.

Good points.
I don't think spelling is really as relevant by that point, so I don't think it needs to be expanded beyond what is there. However I certainly think expanding it to include some formal grammar teaching would be a good thing, albeit I think every student would hate it.

Not knowing the difference between the subject and object of a sentence, what a passive construction actually is (other than "sort of sounds like that?"), the grammatical reason for using shall vs will or who vs whom, knowing basically what participles were at all, etc, until much later in life when I was studying another language....certainly didn't help things! Also a lot of other countries DO teach formal grammar to a higher level and longer than they do in Anglophone countries. It seems just in general Anglophone countries don't put much emphasis on grammar (and language teaching in general, including of their own) :s-smilie:

Original post by BarnabyK
Most of it seems geared towards hitting a mark scheme more than anything else, rather than interpretation and argumentation.


To be fair this pretty much sums up the entire British school system (maybe excepting Scotland, to be fair) so...not unique to GCSE English :tongue:
Original post by hungrysalamander
Currently, GCSE English Language is focused on interpreting & analysing unseen texts and creative writing; only 20% of marks are allocated to SPAG.
Those who browse TSR frequently will often spot grammatical errors from various anons on this site. This reflects negatively on the quality of education in this country, although anons may not be the best representation of the general populace.


Having a separate paper for SPaG would be great, it would allow a singular focus when completing the paper as well as when revising for it. SPaG can often be set aside as an afterthought as opposed to something significant. I feel having a paper dedicated to it would actually give it the significance it deserves.

:troll: definitely target those of us less tolerant of grammatical errors :sadnod:
Personally I think critical analysis is more important than SPAG
Original post by vapordave
Personally I think critical analysis is more important than SPAG


Very true, it would definitely help in university
Original post by hungrysalamander
Currently, GCSE English Language is focused on interpreting & analysing unseen texts and creative writing; only 20% of marks are allocated to SPAG.
Those who browse TSR frequently will often spot grammatical errors from various anons on this site. This reflects negatively on the quality of education in this country, although anons may not be the best representation of the general populace.


Writing formal English is very different from shooting the breeze online. 20% is plenty. There is a reasonable argument that if the meaning of the text is understood that is enough. I couldn't tell you a past participial if I saw one and I would still argue that no meaningful English requires the use of a semi-colon, but that doesn't stop me making myself understood.

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