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Author Topic: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014  (Read 39384 times)  Share 

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literally lauren

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Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« on: October 09, 2014, 10:41:42 am »
+42
EXAM 3 HERE ↓
one last exam, best of luck to you all :)
Section A
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
i.   “Scrooge was his sole executor, his sole administrator, his sole assign, his sole residuary legatee, his sole friend, and sole mourner.”
The realisation that Scrooge is lonely is more influential in his transformation that his realisation that he is alone. Discuss.
OR
ii.   By turning Scrooge into an antihero, Dickens’ A Christmas Carol reaffirms the idea that only the rich and powerful are capable of changing circumstances.

All About Eve directed by Joseph Mankeiwicz
i.   “This is my house, not a theatre. In my house, you're a guest, not a director.”
Discuss the importance of stage-managing one’s appearance and identity in All About Eve.
OR
ii.   All About Eve is a scathing critique of the damage relationships can do. Discuss.


Brooklyn by Colm Toibin
i.   Brooklyn is a place of anxiety and “terrible weight” for Ellis. Discuss.
OR
ii.   How does Toibin convey a sense of divided loyalty in Brooklyn?


Cat's Eye by Margaret Atwood
i.   “I have never had any friends before and I'm terrified of losing them. I want to please.”
Elaine’ self-awareness does more harm than good. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   Discuss the importance of interpolation and temporal displacement in Cat’s Eye.


Cloudstreet by Tim Winton
i.   “Perfect. Always. Everyplace. Me.”
Spirituality is a key element in the search for completeness in Cloudstreet. Discuss.
OR
ii.   Winton’s Cloudstreet suggests that family unity is stronger than dysfunction. Do you agree?


Henry IV Part 1 by William Shakespeare
i.   Hal emerges as the play’s hero because he has youth and time on his side. Discuss.
OR
ii.   “I would ‘twere bed time, Hal, and all well.”
The main question of Henry IV Part 1 is not where Hal's loyalties lie, but where they audience's sympathies lie. Discuss.


In the Country of Men by Hisham Matar
i.   The men of the novel are at the core of the main conflicts. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   Instead of focussing on political lessons, In the Country of Men’s main message is one of honesty and integrity. Discuss.


Mabo directed by Rachel Perkins
i.   Perkins’ Eddie Mabo is ultimately incapable of shaping his own identity. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   There is a world of difference between assimilation and acceptance for Mabo. Discuss.


No Sugar by Jack Davis
i.   Despite their similar roles, the characters of Gran and the Matron are vastly different.
OR
ii.   How does Davis convey a sense of cultural division in No Sugar?


Ransom by David Malouf
i.   The act of story-telling in Ransom requires both a speaker and a listener. Discuss.
OR
ii.   Vengeance is a futile, unsatisfying goal for the characters of Ransom. Do you agree?


Selected Poems by Gwen Harwood
i.   The fractured identities in Harwood’s poems are not as damaged as the stifled ones. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   Discuss the importance of echoing in Harwood’s collection.


Stasiland by Anna Funder
i.   In Stasiland, the truth is not only stranger, but more evocative than fiction. Discuss.
OR
ii.   How does Funder create a sense of a fractured country which ‘no longer exists’?


The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid
i.   Changez’s self-professed love for America is purely a means of manipulating the American, and by extension the readers. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   Discuss the importance of the elapsing of time in The Reluctant Fundamentalist.


The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
i.     “She could not complain about not having shoes when the person she was talking to had no legs.”
Adichie’s short stories suggest sympathy and empathy to be worlds apart. Discuss.
OR
ii.   How are Adichie’s attempts to humanise her characters evident in her storytelling?

Bonus +2 prompts because I forgot to include this text when I said I would- sorry all!
i.     “The trick was to understand America, to know that America was give-and-take. You gave up a lot but you gained a lot, too.”
How does Adichie emphasise the importance of balance in her short story collection?
OR
ii.   The Thing Around Your Neck shows how the things we say are often not as important as what remains unsaid. Discuss.

The War Poems by Wilfred Owen
i.   “I try not to remember these things now.” (The Sentry)
To what extent can Owen’s poetry be seen as a means of escaping from horrific memories?
OR
ii.   Owen’s poetry challenges audiences to re-evaluate more than just their attitude towards war. Discuss.

Things We Didn’t See Coming by Steven Amsterdam
i.   The anonymity of the narrator in Things We Didn’t See Coming makes the character distanced and unsympathetic. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   Amsterdam’s text suggests that shifting circumstances are a part of life. Discuss.


This Boy's Life by Tobias Wolff
i.    Jack is an unreliable narrator in more ways than one. Discuss.
OR
ii.   In This Boy’s Life, author Tobias Wolff distances himself from Jack and makes his former self unsympathetic. Do you agree?


Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose

i.    “It's hard to put into words. I just think he's guilty. I thought it was obvious from the word, 'Go'.”
The jurors in Twelve Angry Men are unable to articulate their true values. Discuss.
OR
ii.   “What are you so polite about?”
“For the same reason you are not; it’s the way I was brought up.”
Reginald Rose’s play shows how upbringing has the greatest influence over one’s character. Discuss.


Will You Please Be Quiet, Please? by Raymond Carver
i.   The characters who are able to let go of the past are the only ones capable of happiness. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   “It was during this time – his lowest ebb, as he referred to it later – that Ralph believed he almost had a nervous breakdown.”
Discuss the importance of retrospective narration in Carver’s short stories.


Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
i.   Brontë portrays Heathcliff as more than a one-dimensional villain. Discuss.
OR
ii.   To call Wuthering Heights a romance is a somewhat problematic interpretation. Do you agree?

Section B
The Imaginative Landscape:

     'Our imagination is always more potent than our surroundings.'



Whose Reality?:

     'The search for perfection is a dangerous one.'



Encountering Conflict:

     'Conflict can never be resolved if one seeks only to ascribe blame to others.'



Exploring Issues of Identity and Belonging:

     'Sometimes unstable identities are better than stable ones.'


Section C

Background Information:

Vincent Carr is a social activist and manager of a talkback radio station’s webpage and comments section.

This piece was published on his own blog, White Noise. This website also has a comments section available for responses from members of the public.



Who let the trolls out?? by Vincent Carr

I never thought I could fear a simply bucket of bolts on my desktop, but I do. I’m terrified. Because I am a father with two young children, and they have access to a world that neither I, nor anyone it seems, can control.
I’ll preface this rant by stating, unequivocally, that I believe in free speech. I will defend to the death your right to speak, but that doesn’t mean I agree with you.
I’ve done my best to minimise screen time for my children, but this was more for health concerns than safety. However, this brave new world has taken a turn for the sinister with the rise of that mythical terror – the internet troll.
Once confined to the undersides of bridges, the modern troll is a despicable beast, targeting victims with the kind of indiscriminate brutality one normally associates with psychopathic killers. Many attempts have been made to discern the logic of the troll, but alas, a bottomless pit of cruelty and ignorance awaits all who dare to look.
How can a parent be expected to keep their children safe in a nascent cyber-world they themselves can’t keep up with? Truth is, none of us can. Some nights I find myself wishing for a power-outage just so we could come together over a candlelit dinner of melting ice cream and play board games till bed time.
At least I can keep a physical eye on my kids in the real world, but the digital world is far too expansive. Knowing my children have access to the web gives me the same sense of unease as sending them unsupervised on a plane to Chicago would. Anyone could be sitting next to them. Anyone could be following them. Anyone could hurt them.
I’m aware I may sound a bit paranoid, but this isn’t my out-of-touch lack of experience that’s prompted this comment. Rather, it’s my overexposure that has altered my perception.
Part of my job involves trawling through tweets and comments to my company’s radio show and selecting the ones I find amusing, insightful, and sharable.
Let me tell you: the good ones are few and far between.
Close to 80% of what I read is misinformed drivel, but the equality of the internet makes these comments just as accessible as everyone else’s opinions.


Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for interconnectivity when it comes to sharing well-informed, moderate opinions, but how many of those do you see nowadays?
More often than not, I have to scroll through abuse-hurling, pathetic ad hominem attacks, distorted nonsense, and worst of all, deliberate antagonism.
So should I disable the comments on this blog? Should I simply not read them? Should I log off my computer altogether and go back a happier, more peaceful stone age?
I’m sure some of you will suggest such things, and more, to me. But this is not a problem with a few rogue morons or opportunistic bullies. This is a problem with the anonymity of the internet, and it is something that needs to be policed, even more so than the real world.
I believe in free speech. Just not consequence free speech.


COMMENTS:

Right on, mate! There are laws against harassment and libel in the real world; why can’t the same apply to the internet. Trolls are just cowards that need to be taught a lesson.
   User:    David_Flannagan

That’s all well and good, but how exactly do you propose regulating such a ‘big scary world?’ The internet isn’t the problem; people are the problem.
   User:    Matthew881

Don’t listen to this guy, he’s just a cranky old man who’s jealous and confused that the world is moving faster than he is. Don’t like it? Don’t read it!
   User:    Jess.123

Policing the internet is possible, but that won’t stop the trolls, they’ll simply find another way to bully and torment. Acknowledging them is part of the problem; trolls feed off attention. Let’s all remember what our parents told us in primary school: ignore the mean kids, and they’ll leave you alone.
   User:   [email protected]



EXAM 2 HERE ↓
file added to this post too :)
Section A
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
i.   In order to transform himself, Scrooge cannot simply remember his past, or ponder his future; he must experience it. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   A Christmas Carol shows us rational realism can conquer fear. Discuss.

All About Eve directed by Joseph Mankeiwicz
i.   In All About Eve, Mankeiwicz suggests that once trust is broken, it can never be truly repaired. Discuss.
OR
ii.   The metadrama of All About Eve shows us that no one is what they seem. Discuss.

Brooklyn by Colm Toibin
i.    Eilis’ transformation is ultimately in vain. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   Modernity only brings about loneliness and isolation in Brooklyn. Discuss.

Cat's Eye by Margaret Atwood
i.   Elaine’s relationships are primarily characterised by their instability and uncertainty. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   Cat’s Eye is a feminist novel, even if its protagonist refutes such ideologies. Discuss.

Cloudstreet by Tim Winton
i.   It is not just what the characters in Cloudstreet represent that endears them to readers, but how they are portrayed.
OR
ii.   Despite Cloudstreet’s specific time and place, it speaks to a universal nostalgia. Discuss.

Henry IV Part 1 by William Shakespeare
i.   “I live out of all order, out of all compass.” To what extent is this true of Falstaff?
OR
ii.   The world of Henry IV Part 1 is more stable at the start of the play than at the end. Discuss.

In the Country of Men by Hisham Matar
i.   Suleiman’s relationships are the greatest corrupting factor in his childhood. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   Matar shows how betrayal and mistrust are more the fault of political turmoil than individual weakness.

Mabo directed by Rachel Perkins
i.   Discuss the symbolism of land in Perkins’ Mabo.
OR
ii.   The tenacity and resourcefulness of Mabo’s family is what gives the protagonist his strength. Discuss.

No Sugar by Jack Davis
i.   The characters in No Sugar are imperfect, but admirable. Discuss.
OR
ii.   No Sugar’s realism makes its message all the more potent. Discuss.

Ransom by David Malouf
"Achilles was “like a man under instruction from his daemon or following the contours of a dream”."
To what extent can Achilles’ actions be blamed on him alone?
OR
i.   In Ransom, David Malouf suggests that no one is irredeemable. Do you agree?

Selected Poems by Gwen Harwood
i.   Harwood’s romanticism of the mundane makes her poetry unrealistic and naive. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   Discuss the importance of binary opposition for Harwood’s collection of poems.

The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid
i.   Changez’s disillusionment was more a problem with his unrealistic expectations than a flawed American society. Discuss.
OR
ii.   The Reluctant Fundamentalist is an anti-American novel, regardless of Changez’s protestations. Do you agree?

The War Poems by Wilfred Owen
i.   In spite of the carnage and horror, Owen’s voice in his War Poems is a compassionate one. Discuss.
OR
ii.   Owen’s poetry is full of echoes. Discuss.

Things We Didn’t See Coming by Steven Amsterdam
i.   To what extent is the chaos in the text simply the product of paranoia?
OR
ii.   “I don’t over emphasise the truth.”
Amsterdam’s narrator provides a confronting glimpse into what it takes to survive. Discuss.

This Boy's Life by Tobias Wolff
i.   “It was truth known only to me, but I believed in it more than I believed in the facts arrayed against it.”
Jack’s dreams and fantasies are ultimately unsustainable. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   The fact that This Boy’s Life is a memoir changes our view of the story, and its protagonist. Discuss.

Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose
i.    In the end, the jury changes its verdict not because it is right, but because it is easy. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   “I never knew they locked the door.”
“Sure they lock the door. What’d you think?”
“I don’t know. It just never occurred to me.”
In Twelve Angry Men, Reginald Rose shows the dangerous potential of assumptions. Discuss.

Will You Please Be Quiet, Please? by Raymond Carver
i.   The isolationism of Carver’s stories offer little comfort or closure. Discuss.
OR
ii.   Ralph reconnects with Marian in many different ways in Will You Please Be Quiet, Please. Discuss.

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
i.   The closeness of love and vengeance in the novel make relationships a danger to everyone. Discuss.
OR
ii.   Discuss the importance of names as they pertain to identity in Wuthering Heights.
Section B
The Imaginative Landscape:

     'We cannot change the world around us without trying.'



Whose Reality?:

     'Only when we accept a person's reality can we hope to understand them.'
NB: This prompt only works tangentially for those studying Wag the Dog. As a possible alternative, consider: 'Only when we accept other realities can we hope to understand one another.' Apologies for any confusion!



Encountering Conflict:

     'Not all conflicts can be resolved; some are eternal.'



Exploring Issues of Identity and Belonging:

     'Everyone is capable of changing their identity.'


Section C

Background Information:

The following appeared as a blog post for an online journal called ‘New Horizons’ that deals with urban life and culture.

Author Liz Bates is a part-time contributor who recently moved to a small country town.



Nitty Gritty of the Inner City by Liz Bates

Would you rather be a city slicker, or a country bumpkin? That seems to be our only choice nowadays. With urban sprawl quickly becoming more industrialised and widespread, people searching for clean country air and wide open plains are retreating further and further away from civilisation.
So is the sea change worthwhile?
I know the typical idea of city-life involves smog, car horns and impoliteness, but I can’t say I’ve experienced all that much. Having lived in the inner city for over 10 years, I found it surprisingly peaceful. Perhaps not as quiet as an empty paddock, but still… peaceful.


I’m not one to thrive on the hustle-and-bustle, and I’ve always found the city to be incredibly accepting of my solitary and minimalist lifestyle. I’m a recognisable regular at several of my favourite shops, I have a beautifully maintained city park as a backyard that I never have to mow, and it felt like I had an entire world within a five minute walk from my apartment.

The city is full of surprises. One of my favourite activities was to wander around and gaze up in awe at architectural brilliance or at the way a sunset reflects off 50 storeys of plexiglass and black marble.

Nowadays, any direction I walk in is simply more open, empty space.

I realise that’s the appeal for some, but I can’t help but imagine all the wonderful things that could occupy that space. Country living is simply wasted potential.

In this era of globalisation and interconnectivity, it is not surprising that some folk might want to escape such a scary new millennium, but how can one reject the manifold beauty of a city? It’s the difference between a magnificent painting that challenges and inspires you, full of whatever you chose to see, and a blank canvas claiming to be giving your eyes a “much-needed break from seeing”.

However, there is something to be said for the safety of the countryside, isn’t there? Aren’t country folk so much more trustworthy and polite? I suppose there’s some truth to this, but ‘city-slickers’ are by no means the opposite.

We’re resourceful, after all (especially when it comes to a creative use of space in a cramped apartment.) Admittedly my home doesn’t have the advantage of space that I might have in a cottage or farmhouse, but my proximity to, well, everything, means I don’t need all my junk crammed into one area. Most of my time is spent at a variety of venues: museums, libraries, bars, shops; why would anyone want to condense this experience?

And despite the stereotype of a grim businessman too busy to stop for anyone, city dwellers regularly band together and help one another.

Last year, I was taking my grandmother out on a shopping expedition when she had a minor heart attack. Within 30 seconds, several people rushed to my side, including two who were trained in first aid. An ambulance arrived within minutes, and I have no doubt her life wouldn’t have been saved if not for the efficiency of the city network and its residents.

In the event something does go wrong, I know I’d rather have the safety net of my friends and neighbours being close by than have to wait hours for any assistance.

There’s a lot to be said for the occasional quiet days when even I tire of the bright lights and loud noise, but living in the city is not about a place, it’s about an ideal world where everything works like clockwork gears; one where mutual dependency ensures not only a happy, healthy lifestyle, but also one that reaffirms your belief in the good of people.

There may be traffic jams clogging up the gear churning ever so often, but for every traffic jam I can remember, what comes to mind first is that nice lady in the sedan taking her kids to school who let me merge even though she was running late. Or the pedestrian who ran across the street instead of walked because he felt bad about holding up so much traffic.

Or the kindness of strangers that stopped to help a young woman and her grandmother, for no other reason than it was the right thing to do.

We city-slickers are thick as thieves and I for one am glad to be home.



EXAM HERE ↓
file attached to this post too if you want a properly formatted version :) Good Luck!
Section A
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
i.   "I wear the chain I forged in life."
How does A Christmas Carol expose the dangers of outrecuidance and disregard for others?
OR
ii.   Scrooge's transformation is purely motivated by self-interest. Do you agree?


All About Eve directed by Joseph Mankeiwicz
i.   "I'm just the carbon copy you read when you can't find the original."
To what extent is this true of Eve?
OR
ii.   The audience sympathises with no one in All About Eve. Discuss.


Brooklyn by Colm Toibin
i.   To what extent can place be an extension of the self in Toibin’s Brooklyn?
OR
ii.   Despite her passive appearance, Elis is actually the most powerful woman in Brooklyn. Discuss.


Cat's Eye by Margaret Atwood
i.   “Another belief of mine: that everyone else my age is an adult, whereas I am merely in disguise.”
Atwood’s emphasis on fragmented and partial identity permeates Cat’s Eye. Discuss.
OR
ii.   Discuss the importance of time and place in Atwood’s Cat’s Eye.


Cloudstreet by Tim Winton
i.   Winton characterises Australia as a nation spiritually defined by war. Discuss.
OR
ii.   Cloudstreet is constructed with an absence of morally blameworthy or praiseworthy characters so as to better encompass Winton’s idea of the Australian way of life. Discuss.


Henry IV Part 1 by William Shakespeare
i.   There are more role-players than roles in Henry IV Part 1. Discuss.
OR
ii.   "I, by looking on the praise of him, See riot and dishonour stain the brow Of my young Harry."
King Henry is a better monarch than he is a father. Do you agree?


In the Country of Men by Hisham Matar
i.   It is Matar’s narrative structure and style that make In the Country of Men so emotionally potent. Discuss.
OR
ii.   How does In the Country of Men convey its main political lessons?


Mabo directed by Rachel Perkins
i.   The characters’ weaknesses are never truly resolved in Mabo. Discuss.
OR
ii.   How does Perkins establish a sense of Australian identity in Mabo?


No Sugar by Jack Davis
i.   How does Davis use language and performativity to create a sense of segregation in No Sugar?
OR
ii.   Jimmy’s protest in No Sugar is ultimately in vain. Do you agree?


Ransom by David Malouf
i.   No character in Ransom has a stable identity. Discuss.
OR
ii.   How does Malouf's focus on storytelling in Ransom emphasise the importance of perspective?


Selected Poems by Gwen Harwood
i.   Harwood’s poems convey a savage and horrific side to human nature. To what extend do you agree?
OR
ii.   Discuss the importance of quotidian moments in Harwood’s poetry.


The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid
i.   The ambiguity in The Reluctant Fundamentalist reflects an unstable, mistrustful world. Discuss.
OR
ii.   The relationship between Erica and Chris was healthier and more real than that between Erica and Changez. Do you agree?


The War Poems by Wilfred Owen
i.   Owen's messages of loss and absence are more confronting than his gory imagery. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   "And each slow dusk a drawing down of blinds" (Anthem For Doomed Youth) The 'doomed' members of society are not just those who went to war. Discuss.


This Boy's Life by Tobias Wolff
i.   The characters' attempts to mould their own identities are ultimately unsuccessful. Do you agree?
OR
ii.   "I was subject to fits of feeling myself unworthy." Jack's self-awareness justifies his actions, and makes him more sympathetic. Do you agree?


Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose
i.   “Okay, your honor, start the show.” It is in Juror Seven’s sarcasm and apathy that Rose presents his most scathing critique of the harsh truth of common attitudes in 1950’s America. Discuss.
OR
ii.   “Hold it? We’re trying to put a guilty man into the chair where he belongs—and all of a sudden we’re paying attention to fairy tales.”
The jurors in Twelve Angry Men are not characters, but caricatures. Discuss.


Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
i.   Discuss the role of domestic disorder in Wuthering Heights.
OR
ii.   "No, I'm running on too fast - I bestow my own attributes over-liberally on him." How is the female consciousness explicated in Wuthering Heights?
Section B
The Imaginative Landscape:

     'Landscapes only affect us when we ascribe them importance.'



Whose Reality?:

     'Reality is too intangible for us to ever truly embrace it.'



Encountering Conflict:

     'The experience of conflict can make our previous moral systems untenable.'



Exploring Issues of Identity and Belonging:

     'Our compulsion to belong is more dangerous than where we may belong.'
 
 
Section C

Background Information:
St. Jude’s Academy, a Melbournian school has recently decided to cut funding from the academic departments, and instead enhance their technical and vocational facilities. The school also established compulsory weekly vocational lessons for students in years 9-11.

In response, a current Year 11 student, Armanno Eli wrote the following article for the school’s weekly newsletter to be distributed amongst parish families: students, parents and educational staff.
It is accompanied by various responses from members of the school community.


We don't need no SHEDucation! by Armanno Eli

What are the basic staples of an education? Reading, ‘Riting, and ‘Rithmatic, right? My earliest scholastic memories were of these critical ‘3 Rs.’ We had to get a good grip of the basics before moving on to bigger and better things.


As the years went by, our school days became a lot more varied. We were introduced to the wonderful worlds of arts, music, languages and sport teams. These out-of-classroom activities became part of daily life. Gradually, as we matured, we were given more and more choice. By the time we get to Year 12, we’ll have full control over our subjects, and I can’t wait!

But balance is important. Even those of us fulfilling the necessary university prerequisites for our future need some variation. Many of my peers learn a language or take up an instrument to break up the occasional monotony of regular academics.

However, trust plays an important part in developing a curriculum; trust in the students to know what they’re capable of, what their preferences are, and what they want to do with their lives. We might need a little guidance here and there, but we’re meant to be learning from our mistakes, aren’t we?

That’s why this new system confuses me. There’s a big difference between us choosing to opt out of the classroom environment and experience some real world skills occasionally, and commanding us to ‘learn’ in a shed instead of a classroom. From the beginning of this year, all students from Years 9-12 have one day a week of ‘vocational learning,’ which largely consists of making wooden chopping boards and getting our fingers sawn off by electronic equipment we don’t know how to use. Is that the kind of education you’d want for your child.


I’m aware not all of us know exactly what we want to do in life, especially at a Year 9 level. The activities may even open up some minds to the possibility of working in mechanics or engineering. But are we really going to subject an entire cohort to this experience on the off-chance one kid out of a hundred enjoys it? You don’t see piano lessons being made compulsory just in case we have a budding virtuoso in our year level, do you?

Of course not. Because in all other areas of administration, St. Jude’s is wise and cautious with their budget. So what is it about these tradie-classes that are important enough for our teachers to think they can bend the rules?

I am not advocating a system of pure academia, however I don’t think it’s beneficial to enforce this kind of learning. We’re told that everyone learns at different paces, and in different environments, and I believe our school has done well to give us a variety of opportunities.

But the key word here is opportunity. We should of course have the option of more practical, skill-based classes if we want, but imposing compulsory vocational sessions makes as much sense as forcing everyone into Advanced Mandarin and expecting us to enjoy ourselves. Sure, a few people might love it, but it’s still a waste of time and resources.

Some might argue one day a week is a small sacrifice, but personally, I don’t want my quality of education compromised by this scheme.

Education is one of the most important investments you can make, both as a student or a parent, and we should of course appreciate every opportunity we get. However, I believe this is the perfect moment to re-evaluate the current system in the hopes of maximising its efficiency and practicality.

How about some more funding for the technology department? The rise of globalisation and industrial science means we should all be prepared for the demands of a new millennium. Or some new equipment in the science labs? Biology and Chemistry are some of the most popular subjects, and yet we still only have one beaker and lab coat for every eight students.

I’d even accept some general life-skills classes, teaching us about things like workplace disputes or scary social situations. If we’re aiming for real-world benefits, wouldn’t a class on how to talk to a friend going through a tough time be more helpful in the long run than a wobbly table you made in Year 10?

So let’s band together and oppose this new decision. If you value education and free-will as much as I do, I encourage you to talk to your teachers and parish representatives about altering this new proposal, before we’re turned into a generation of people who actually believe Writing begins with an ‘R.’


Comments Section: 'Word on the playground?'

Bruce: (Year 11 student, currently enrolled in the new vocational system)

What’s the point of me learning a bunch of poncey Shakespeare or Romanian geography when I know I want to be a tradie? Balance may be important, but a balance of useful and useless skills is just dumb.
We’ve put up with useless, compulsory academic subjects for so long, it’s about time us vocational kids got the education experience we need!



Mrs. Haywood: (Year 11/12 History Teacher)

As someone who’s seen many schools over the years simply pour all the funding into one department and leave others floundering, I’m glad to see the student body are fighting this administrative decision. Let’s have a bit more equality between our disciplines; surely that’s a better, more positive message to send to our students!



Victoria: (Year 12 student)

Why not just abolish this ‘vocational’ nonsense altogether? Students need a proper, traditional education; being ‘well-rounded’ is just some pretentious new-age jargon to disguise the fact that sub-par    subjects aren’t actually giving us the “important” life skills they promise. Learning to make a birdhouse or a saucepan won’t prepare us at all for the real world. Why should we cater for the lame-brained simpletons among us who can’t handle real school?


END



For anyone who's interested, I will be posting 3 original practice exams every Saturday (9:00am) till the exam, so if you want to practice working through things at an exam pace (and at that hour of the morning) then feel free. Otherwise, the exam will remain up, so you can leave it for later once you've sorted out your notes and feel more prepared.

There'll be new prompts for all four contexts (and I'll go out of my way to ensure these haven't  been asked before, at least as far as my sources tell me) as well a variety of Language Analysis tasks. Keep in mind, I'm deliberately making all of this quite difficult in order to test you. This is a test in thinking on your feet, so don't panic if some things seem unmanageable at first. As we approach the end of the study design, VCAA will be getting increasingly more devious and experimental, so prepare for the worst and hope for the best!

For Section A, I won't be covering all the texts, (edit: turns out I'm basically covering all the texts. If anyone's doing Maus or Stasiland, let me know before Saturday 25th) Here are the ones that have been requested:

(1) indicates present from exam one onwards, (2) and (3) for later additions

- A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (1)
- All about Eve by Joseph Mankiewicz (1)
- Brooklyn by Colm Toibin (1)
- Cat's Eye by Margaret Atwood (1)
- Cloudstreet by Tim Winton (1)
- Henry IV Part 1 by William Shakespeare (1)
- In the Country of Men by Hisham Matar (1)
- Mabo directed by Rachel Perkins (1)
- No Sugar by Jack Davis (1)
- Ransom by David Malouf (1)
- Selected Poems by Gwen Harwood (1)
- Stasiland by Anna Funder (3)
- The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid (1)
- The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie  (3)
- The War Poems by Wilfred Owen (1)
- Things We Didn't See Coming by Steven Amsterdam (2)
- This Boy's Life by Tobias Wolff (1)
- Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose (1)
- Will You Please Be Quiet, Please? by Raymond Carver (2)
- Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte (1)
 
I'll edit in the exams to this post in spoiler tabs, but I'll also attach word document versions, so if you want to do a time test, get someone else to print it off for you and you can annotate/plan/write how you would if it were a real exam. Or you can always just use this as a resource and brainstorm ideas if you're not concerned about timing :)

NB: Due to file size restrictions, many of the visuals are smaller than intended. Not a big deal, but if you can't see them, just enlarge it on your version, which may or may not screw up the format of the document... or look the copy on this thread :)

Happy studying!
« Last Edit: November 10, 2014, 11:22:47 pm by literally lauren »

Blondie21

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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2014, 04:45:24 pm »
+2
Hey Lauren, this will be awesome!

Although it is not a popular text, I would like to request Gwen Harwood's "Selected Poems".
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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2014, 04:47:52 pm »
+2
Lauren, you're a gun! I'm happy to write prompts for ACC, This Boy's Life, TAM, and anything else that is on SparkNotes ( ::) ) if you wanted to reduce your labour. Let me know if there's anything I can do to help!
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PsychoT

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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2014, 04:51:20 pm »
0
Henry :) If you've got any notes from last year when you did it too, i'll take em :)
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literally lauren

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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2014, 05:08:52 pm »
+3
+ Added Gwen Harwood's Poetry and Cat's Eye.
PsychoT, check out the Henry thread. DJA and I have done some extensive interpretational discussion back and forth, and there are some notes on the first few pages if you need :)

Brenden, I'd welcome some Cloudstreet or Country of Men prompts since I've got nothing on them, and I'm sure there'll be some people needing those ones too :)
« Last Edit: October 18, 2014, 09:03:06 am by literally lauren »

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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2014, 05:26:25 pm »
0
In the country of men please ! Thank you ! :)
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literally lauren

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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2014, 05:29:05 pm »
0
added :)

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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2014, 05:44:24 pm »
+1
+ Added Gwen Harwood's Poetry and Cat's Eye.
PsychoT, check out the Henry thread. DJA and I have done some extensive interpretational discussion back and forth, and there are some notes on the first few pages if you need :)

Brenden, I'd welcome some Cloudstreet or Country of Men prompts since I've got nothing on them, and I'm sure there'll be some people needing those ones too :)
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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2014, 06:33:28 pm »
0
I'll probably be the only one to request it so don't worry too much about it, but a prompt for Brooklyn would be good! Thanks for this, it's a great idea :)
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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2014, 06:39:39 pm »
0
I'll probably be the only one to request it so don't worry too much about it, but a prompt for Brooklyn would be good! Thanks for this, it's a great idea :)
I can also do this.
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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2014, 06:47:31 pm »
0
- All about Eve by Joseph Mankiewicz
That's all I needed. Cheers for this Lauren!
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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2014, 07:11:17 pm »
0
I'll probably be the only one to request it so don't worry too much about it, but a prompt for Brooklyn would be good! Thanks for this, it's a great idea :)
Added as well :)

I'll probably end up doing another one or two of these at this rate since I have handful of prompts that might be useful. This might even be a weekly thing if I can write the L.A. pieces fast enough.

Also, I've recently been informed that VCAA doesn't publish the images (or sometimes even entire texts) from Section C on the past exam site, so I've got some scanned copies for anyone who wants them. Just PM me your email and I'll link you into a google drive thingo :)

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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2014, 07:46:18 pm »
0
Added as well :)

I'll probably end up doing another one or two of these at this rate since I have handful of prompts that might be useful. This might even be a weekly thing if I can write the L.A. pieces fast enough.

Also, I've recently been informed that VCAA doesn't publish the images (or sometimes even entire texts) from Section C on the past exam site, so I've got some scanned copies for anyone who wants them. Just PM me your email and I'll link you into a google drive thingo :)

How are you planning on doing the Sec C articles? Nicely formatted Word doc? I'd be open to writing a Sec C piece if the first exam is positively received!
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literally lauren

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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #13 on: October 09, 2014, 07:56:50 pm »
+3
Nicely formatted Word doc?
Nicely formatted?
Heh. The version I post on the forums will probably be a little wonkier, so I'd recommend everyone download the file anyway since it's looking a lot neater at this stage, plus there's the added advantage of being able to view 2 pages at once rather than constantly scrolling. Having a hard copy will be more like a real exam anyway :)

Time permitting, we might just turn this thread into a whole bunch of practice sections. First one can be the beta-test.
I'm also open to suggestions regarding timing. Obviously school hours are no good for anyone until SWOT-VAC, but would you guys prefer week ends? Mornings? Afternoons? Not a big deal since you can access them at any time, but if you're wanting to do a live test and then chat with one another about your general impressions, is there a general day/time you guys would prefer?

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Re: Free Original Practice Exam for English 2014
« Reply #14 on: October 09, 2014, 08:30:22 pm »
0
i'm sorry this is sorta late but... David Malouf's Ransom and Joseph Mankiewicz's All About Eve :)

thank you so much!