Login | Register
FREE Head Start Lectures this January - book now! HSC: register here | QCE: register here | VCE: register here

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

January 29, 2020, 04:08:03 am

Author Topic: VCE English Question Thread  (Read 405168 times)  Share 

0 Members and 2 Guests are viewing this topic.

literally lauren

  • Administrator
  • Part of the furniture
  • *****
  • Posts: 1632
  • Resident English/Lit Nerd
  • Respect: +1293
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #720 on: October 24, 2015, 05:15:08 pm »
+3
What's your advice on made up stories for context?
There's no point telling the truth, since that'd just be dull, and it's not like the assessors are giving you marks on how accurate your story is (ie. if you write about a fight you had with your siblings but they somehow stalk your VTAC number and find out you don't have any siblings... they don''t care, so long as the ideas are good.)
So you can make up whatever you want; write about yourself*, write from the perspective of a character in your set text, adopt a voice of someone from history (eg. the inner monologue of Tony Abbot right after the libspill, or a POV narrative set in a post-nuclear future - anything) just so long as there's a valid reason for you making that choice. Try not to just rely on the plot or some novel aspect in order to get across your ideas. The reason most people opt for an expository style is because it's usually a more direct line of communication between you and the assessor, whereas creative pieces and stories tend to be more ambiguous, but that doesn't mean they can't be done well.

*Just don't make them "petty personal stories," as the examiner's reports used to say. The really tacky things like this example from the last page:
Prompt: The consequences of conflict are often unforeseen.
One time, on the bus home from school, I was sitting next to a kid whose girlfriend broke up with him over the phone. He totes flipped out and accidentally smacked me in the face, and I got a sore nose. So because his girlfriend broke up with him, I got a sore nose. Through this, we can conclude that the consequences of conflict are often unforeseen
...just come across as flimsy and insubstantial. Stories can be done well, but they take some work, so it just depends where your strengths lie.

In Henry IV, Hotspur gets furious by reading a letter outlining the dangers of the plans for the rebellion. (Act 2 Scene 3)
Might have misread, but does anyone know who wrote this letter?

Cheers
I think that letter is from the Archbishop of York, which really isn't made plain so I can't blame you for not knowing - it took me a few readings and I thought I knew that text well :P
It's a little tricky because he kind of contradicts himself by first claiming that the Archbishop is a hypocrite, then a coward, then a traitor, then an ally, then a traitor again {...perhaps an indication of his haphazard logic and impetuosity}
His character is technically listed at the start, and we see him chat with Sir Micheal in Act 4 Scene 4, but his only role is aptly summed up by lit charts:
     "Richard Scroop – The Archbishop of York, he is a rebel and friend of the Percy family who worries from a distance about their
      treason plot. He supports the rebels not with military might but with strategic advice and letters to potential allies."
There's not a lot to say about him, and the only thing I'd make of that 2.3 letter reading scene is the fact that right from the start, Hotspur exhibits a stubbornness and refusal to entertain the thought of retreat or loss, and the fact that he lists his supporters to be his father, uncle, Mortimer, Glendower, and Douglas - most of whom either end up dead, captured, or just never rock up in the first place. So by the end of the play, all the support Hotspur thought he had ends up abandoning him, whereas Hal rides into battle with his father, brother, and allies by his side, suggesting the tables have turned, and whatnot.

if we're given a comparative that has a lot going on eg. 3 comments, how do we address the comments?

do we state all of their contentions in the intro? do we analyse them all separately as though they were an article?
I would just quickly mention in the intro that there were three responding comments to the piece and then later on just analyse them one by one. (In contrast ABC contends...) Likewise, 123 argues .... and Similarly, 999 asserts that..) If one of the comments are supporting the original article then state that 'Supporting the views of the (Author), 999 asserts)

That's how i'd do it and have done it, not sure if it's entirely correct but someone can verify this hopefully :)
Verified :)
Exactly what Christiano said; a brief statement in the introduction like 'The piece was also accompanied by a variety of comments spanning different views from members of the public / of the school community / of the local barber's association / w/e' is sufficient, and then you can go into detail with each one when it's relevant to the discussion in your body paragraphs. The linking phrases in the quote above are also excellent ones to use in that situation.

If you're really desperate, you can just talk about them in a paragraph at the end, but it'd be better to try and integrate them, if possible.

Because of Wag the Dog is in this year's Whose Reality text list, would it be safe to assume that prompts pertaining to memories, shared experiences etc. will not appear this year? For instance, last year (the first year Wag the Dog appeared on the text list), the prompt was ‘Misrepresenting reality can have serious consequences', which fits perfectly with Wag the Dog, because the film is all about manipulating people's reality for political gain and the consequences which arise from doing so.

Surely the prompt must relate well to all four texts for Whose Reality? Or does VCAA expect you to know more than one Whose Reality text? Because we did Death of a Salesman as well, but I don't want to have to prepare for both texts for Context...
As mentioned, your context prompt will relate to all four texts, but some will fit better than others. Inevitably some texts have a natural advantage some years, but since it's what you do with those ideas that matters, you shouldn't have to worry too much. So long as you've endeavored to connect the core of the prompt with the core of the text somehow, you'll be fine.

However, the texts that are in their first year tend to have a very obvious link, whereas the others might be more peripheral, meaning that one text for each context:
[IL] - A Passage to India
[WR] - Foe
[EC] - The Lietenant & A Separation (because the person in charge of conflict can't count)
[ID&B] - Wild Cat Falling
will likely have a really clear prompt link. To some extent you can look back over previous years and see this - the '14 WR prompt was clearly angled towards Wag The Dog whilst the '14 EC prompt suited Every Man in this Village really well. It's not the be-all-end-all, and most competent writers can make their ideas fit a whole variety of prompts anyway, as exemplified by the fact that you can go back as far as 2008 and still consider connections even though your texts weren't even considered at that point.

You should be safe enough concentrating on a single text for context, but it can't hurt to go back over notes or old essays for your other one just in case.

Does anyone feel like one hour is way too little to annotate one/two language analysis pieces AND write an 800-1000 word piece? Has anyone in the past tried an exam structure like:
Section A - 50 minutes
Section B - 50 minutes
Section C - 1 hour 20 minutes
If you can't get Language Analysis done in under an hour, then you're probably doing a lot of unnecessary work, or demonstrating the same skill over and over to no effect. I'd argue L.A. is the one piece you want to finish in less than an hour, and Sec.A and B are the ones where you can spend more time fleshing out ideas. L.A. is ludicrously formulaic, and you shouldn't have to annotate them too extensively. Are you just finding persuasive devices? Or do you link them to effects and to other parts of the article too? Either way, try to cut your planning/annotating time down, and then be as efficient as possible when you're writing. 1000+ words is kind of excessive for L.A. hitting around there is pretty much necessary for T.R. and Context if you're aiming high (~though depending on your style for Context.)

Remember, they're testing your ability to be selective, and the assessors want to see that you know how to pick out the most important parts of the article to analyse, not just discuss absolutely everything you come across, so prioritise the important bits and try not to get caught up in the trap of overanalysing and wasting time.

I'd also advocate doing Section C first if you can get the timing under control, since having to revisit it after spending almost two hours doing other things can mean an unnecessary extra read-through or time wasted reacquainting yourself with the material, whereas if you spend the majority of reading time getting through the article(s,) jot down a couple of things for Parts A/B when writing time begins, but then get straight into L.A. and aim to finish in under an hour, you'll be in a better position to get more credit in the other two sections where the breadth of your coverage is more important.


+ in relation to various queries about what the prompts will be about, obvs. we won't know for sure until 9:00 on Wednesday, but be careful when ruling things out completely, as VCAA can throw you various kinds of curveballs (for reference, see the entirety of the 2011 exam) and one of their favourite curveballs is giving you a familiar concept wrapped up in unfamiliar terminology. So whilst the key areas that have come up in previous years are unlikely/basically impossible options for this year, that doesn't mean VCAA can't alter the wording just to mess with you.

eg. 2012 IL Prompt: The ways in which we understand a landscape and respond to it can change over time.
2014 IL Prompt: Imagination shapes our response to the landscape.

2009 WR Prompt: We do not see things as they are. We see them as we are.
2011 WR Prompt: Shared experience does not mean that people see things the same way.

2010 EC Prompt: It is difficult to remain a bystander in any situation of conflict.
2012 EC Prompt: The experience of conflict changes people’s priorities.

2008 ID&B Prompt: Our relationships with others help us to define who we are.
2011 ID&B Prompt: Without connection to others there is no me.

I'm not saying these prompts are identical, and your responses should differ depending on the exact wording, but notice how there's a lot of overlap between the kinds of concepts and arguments you'd use in these sets of situations? It's entirely possible VCAA will give you an entirely new bit of terminology that they haven't used before (... in fact that's quite likely,) but the core of it is still going to fit under that Context umbrella of ideas, and it will still hopefully be fairly familiar to you.

If you're pressed for time, by all means consider what's likely to come up and what you can fairly safely rule out, but make sure you're prepared for a difficult exam just in case. If it ends up being dead easy, then all those complex things you've developed can make your pieces even better. And if it is difficult, then you'll have an edge over the majority of the state who've only prepared for the standard stuff :)

literally lauren

  • Administrator
  • Part of the furniture
  • *****
  • Posts: 1632
  • Resident English/Lit Nerd
  • Respect: +1293
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #721 on: October 24, 2015, 05:24:27 pm »
+4
Re: timing, the ABC order is actually completely arbitrary. It's a remnant from the previous (-2008) Study Design when they kept Text Response largely unchanged, but altered the other two tasks - there's no reason why it's structured like that, and most teacher's don't require you to go through it page by page, just like a lot of people will tackle short answer/ extended response questions in Maths/Science subjects first, and then do multi-choice last just in case they run out of time and can shade some random bubbles in the last few minutes :P This method also isn't compulsory, but it makes sense from a test-taking perspective.

1) Spend 15 min reading time going over C and analyzing, make points in the head- Write for 1 hour. Do not look at Section A + B
           2 hours + 15 min left at this stage.
2) Spend 2-3 min on structure/points of your text response and write for 1 hour. Again Do not look at Section B
             1 hour + around 10 min left
3) Spend 2-3 min on structuring points/essay for Section B. Write for 1 hour
             Around 5 min left
4) Go back and pray u didnt fuck anything up

This definitely works well if you find yourself overwhelmed by having to mentally plan all three tasks at once. Some people might prefer to let the prompts churn over in their heads, but it depends how you approach things. A good halfway point would be to plan one essay ahead at all times, so

Reading Time: go through C and look at the prompts for A - maybe choose one, but no stress.
First Hour: write C and contemplate A prompts
Second Hour: look at the B prompt, and then choose/write A
Third Hour write B

^Just another possibility; working out your own method by practicing is definitely valuable though :)

The best thing about English is when it's over haha.
Don't taunt them, man. They've still got three days left :P

Mc47

  • Victorian
  • Trendsetter
  • **
  • Posts: 146
  • Respect: 0
  • School Grad Year: 2015
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #722 on: October 24, 2015, 05:27:10 pm »
0
How important is the word count exactly? e.g. If I write a 600 word language analysis and get a 7/10, could that have been much higher if I wrote 800+ words? Or is there a certain point where the examiners stop rewarding quantity and instead focus mainly on quality?

duo0024

  • Victorian
  • Adventurer
  • *
  • Posts: 24
  • Respect: +2
  • School Grad Year: 2015
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #723 on: October 24, 2015, 05:36:43 pm »
0

Similar question:
Does anyone think there will be a prompt about change and personal growth for ID&B? My teacher fucked us over for our SAC and gave us 'Sometimes we need to accept change in order to grow' (VCAA 2013) when The Mind of a Thief wasn't even on the text list in 2013... (I think)

My other text is Skin and of course there are changes in MOAT and Skin but no one really grows because of it -- it ends up being destructive? Does anyone agree? (I really struggled with this prompt)

IM DOING I&B TOO! Also I see what you mean. I studied Mind of a Thief too and could not write an essay about change (it was extremely difficult) so I wrote about Summer of the Seventeenth Doll instead, I find that for mind of thief, the prompts that are suited for it are mainly about culture and place, whereas the Doll is more about change. SO, hopefully to cater to all of the texts VCAA will make the I&B prompt really broad like last years :)

99.90 pls

  • Victorian
  • Forum Obsessive
  • ***
  • Posts: 402
  • We who were living are now dying
  • Respect: +118
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #724 on: October 24, 2015, 05:49:46 pm »
0
I'd argue L.A. is the one piece you want to finish in less than an hour. You shouldn't have to annotate them too extensively. Are you just finding persuasive devices? Either way, try to cut your planning/annotating time down, and then be as efficient as possible when you're writing. 1000+ words is kind of excessive for L.A.

What's a good amount of time to be spending annotating? During annotation, I usually write down the contention/s and highlight language devices and elements of any graphics. I use three colours to link the devices in three 'categories' (arguments, techniques etc. depending on the text) and then I start writing. Annotating takes me 15 minutes usually, or 20 minutes for comparative. Then I write for about an hour, in which I'll produce ~700 words :\

Sec A and B are the ones where you can spend more time fleshing out ideas. Hitting around 1000 words is pretty much necessary for T.R. and Context if you're aiming high (~though depending on your style for Context.)

I hit 1000 words for Context in 50-55 minutes because I know my piece/s pretty much back to front, but I'd definitely struggle to hit 1000 for Text Response. For my trial exam, it took me about 60 minutes to write ~700 words for This Boy's Life and the assessor gave me 19/20. Do you think I should be writing more (if I'm aiming for a very high score) and do you think maybe the assessor was being a bit too lenient then?
2014: Chinese SL (45)
2015: Literature (49) | English (45) | Mathematical Methods (44) | Specialist Mathematics (38) | Legal Studies (36)
ATAR: 99.85

Limited tutoring spots available for English and Literature in 2017! Currently taking groups of three to four students. Please don't hesitate to send me a message on AN with any queries you might have :)

Mc47

  • Victorian
  • Trendsetter
  • **
  • Posts: 146
  • Respect: 0
  • School Grad Year: 2015
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #725 on: October 24, 2015, 05:56:24 pm »
0
IM DOING I&B TOO! Also I see what you mean. I studied Mind of a Thief too and could not write an essay about change (it was extremely difficult) so I wrote about Summer of the Seventeenth Doll instead, I find that for mind of thief, the prompts that are suited for it are mainly about culture and place, whereas the Doll is more about change. SO, hopefully to cater to all of the texts VCAA will make the I&B prompt really broad like last years :)

I figured there could be something about expectations (of society/family/friends etc) and how they can influence us (fits well with the Doll and Skin I think)

Not sure how it fits into the other texts though

imaware

  • Forum Regular
  • **
  • Posts: 64
  • Respect: 0
  • School: Private
  • School Grad Year: 2015
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #726 on: October 24, 2015, 06:00:23 pm »
+2

I hit 1000 words for Context in 50-55 minutes because I know my piece/s pretty much back to front, but I'd definitely struggle to hit 1000 for Text Response. For my trial exam, it took me about 60 minutes to write ~700 words for This Boy's Life and the assessor gave me 19/20. Do you think I should be writing more (if I'm aiming for a very high score) and do you think maybe the assessor was being a bit too lenient then?

Damn I'm doing This Boy's life too what the hell did you write to get a 19/20 in 700 words haha. Thats crazy good.
I usually have to hit 900+ words to get over 18/20 but thats just me

Cristiano

  • Forum Regular
  • **
  • Posts: 82
  • Respect: +2
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #727 on: October 24, 2015, 06:17:23 pm »
+2
What's a good amount of time to be spending annotating? During annotation, I usually write down the contention/s and highlight language devices and elements of any graphics. I use three colours to link the devices in three 'categories' (arguments, techniques etc. depending on the text) and then I start writing. Annotating takes me 15 minutes usually, or 20 minutes for comparative. Then I write for about an hour, in which I'll produce ~700 words :\

I hit 1000 words for Context in 50-55 minutes because I know my piece/s pretty much back to front, but I'd definitely struggle to hit 1000 for Text Response. For my trial exam, it took me about 60 minutes to write ~700 words for This Boy's Life and the assessor gave me 19/20. Do you think I should be writing more (if I'm aiming for a very high score) and do you think maybe the assessor was being a bit too lenient then?

When doing a timed Section C, i don't waste time highlighting the page and annotating and instead just do this in my head. If i have to i will underline the words and just write about it. In that 20 mins you were planning and highlighting you could have been writing, and the assessors don't mark you on your highlighting skills - they don't even get to see it as you take the task book home!

So in reading time i would suggest just going over techniques and persuasive methods in your head and thinking of what you are going to write, rather than wasting valuable time as you could be up to 800-900
« Last Edit: October 24, 2015, 06:51:45 pm by Cristiano »

99.90 pls

  • Victorian
  • Forum Obsessive
  • ***
  • Posts: 402
  • We who were living are now dying
  • Respect: +118
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #728 on: October 24, 2015, 07:12:53 pm »
0
When doing a timed Section C, i don't waste time highlighting the page and annotating and instead just do this in my head. If i have to i will underline the words and just write about it. In that 20 mins you were planning and highlighting you could have been writing, and the assessors don't mark you on your highlighting skills - they don't even get to see it as you take the task book home!

So in reading time i would suggest just going over techniques and persuasive methods in your head and thinking of what you are going to write, rather than wasting valuable time as you could be up to 800-900

Thanks for the advice! I'm going to try that now, analysing during reading time and just highlighting only (usually I write a bunch of stuff next to the highlighted text) for maybe 5 minutes. I'll report back later tonight haha

And just wondering, if I'm aiming for very high 40's, how much should I be writing for Section C? I'm currently writing 650-700 words, which I feel is very inadequate.
2014: Chinese SL (45)
2015: Literature (49) | English (45) | Mathematical Methods (44) | Specialist Mathematics (38) | Legal Studies (36)
ATAR: 99.85

Limited tutoring spots available for English and Literature in 2017! Currently taking groups of three to four students. Please don't hesitate to send me a message on AN with any queries you might have :)

Cristiano

  • Forum Regular
  • **
  • Posts: 82
  • Respect: +2
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #729 on: October 24, 2015, 07:17:23 pm »
+1
It really depends. Quality over quality. One with 700 words but is written very concisely should score higher than a 1000 word one but is very waffly. However, i do think that if you want to get 45+ then you should be hitting the 1000 word mark for each section, even 900 words would suffice if it has good quality.

99.90 pls

  • Victorian
  • Forum Obsessive
  • ***
  • Posts: 402
  • We who were living are now dying
  • Respect: +118
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #730 on: October 24, 2015, 07:21:47 pm »
0
It really depends. Quality over quality. One with 700 words but is written very concisely should score higher than a 1000 word one but is very waffly. However, i do think that if you want to get 45+ then you should be hitting the 1000 word mark for each section, even 900 words would suffice if it has good quality.

900-1000 words for Language Analysis! I just spoke to someone who got 48 and they said Language Analysis should be the shortest of the three? He said even the best students probably wouldn't hit 1000 for Language Analysis and that they give a lot less paper to write LA because you're not meant to write as much?

Can anyone confirm or deny these allegations?
2014: Chinese SL (45)
2015: Literature (49) | English (45) | Mathematical Methods (44) | Specialist Mathematics (38) | Legal Studies (36)
ATAR: 99.85

Limited tutoring spots available for English and Literature in 2017! Currently taking groups of three to four students. Please don't hesitate to send me a message on AN with any queries you might have :)

Cristiano

  • Forum Regular
  • **
  • Posts: 82
  • Respect: +2
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #731 on: October 24, 2015, 07:25:47 pm »
+1
Well maybe not 1000, though it should be the shortest - if you are concise. 800ish words would score a 10/10 if it was of really good quality. (Last year's Yergon piece, in examiners report scored, the student scored 10/10 and was roughly 800-850 words.)
 1000 words might score a 7 or 8 if it didnt meet the criteria (Didnt analyse images) or maybe it was restating the contention every sentence and some parts were irrelevant.
Again. Quality > Quantity.

Edit: The 10/10 piece was 871 words (calm down, it was a comparative piece lol)
« Last Edit: October 24, 2015, 07:28:38 pm by Cristiano »

99.90 pls

  • Victorian
  • Forum Obsessive
  • ***
  • Posts: 402
  • We who were living are now dying
  • Respect: +118
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #732 on: October 24, 2015, 07:50:14 pm »
0
Well maybe not 1000, though it should be the shortest - if you are concise. 800ish words would score a 10/10 if it was of really good quality. (Last year's Yergon piece, in examiners report scored, the student scored 10/10 and was roughly 800-850 words.)
 1000 words might score a 7 or 8 if it didnt meet the criteria (Didnt analyse images) or maybe it was restating the contention every sentence and some parts were irrelevant.
Again. Quality > Quantity.

Edit: The 10/10 piece was 871 words (calm down, it was a comparative piece lol)

Thanks! It's reassuring to know that 871 words can score a 10/10. Thank god I don't have to waffle to 1000. And you mentioned comparative, which brings me to another question - would standalone pieces require less words than a comparative? Just so I can get a good guideline for Language Analysis (e.g. 900 words for Comparative, 800 words for standalone)
2014: Chinese SL (45)
2015: Literature (49) | English (45) | Mathematical Methods (44) | Specialist Mathematics (38) | Legal Studies (36)
ATAR: 99.85

Limited tutoring spots available for English and Literature in 2017! Currently taking groups of three to four students. Please don't hesitate to send me a message on AN with any queries you might have :)

Cristiano

  • Forum Regular
  • **
  • Posts: 82
  • Respect: +2
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #733 on: October 24, 2015, 07:57:37 pm »
+2
I would think so, some of the stuff is just introducing the piece and spitting out formula stuff. 800 would be fine for one piece. Even less, 700-750 if you're really running out of time.

99.90 pls

  • Victorian
  • Forum Obsessive
  • ***
  • Posts: 402
  • We who were living are now dying
  • Respect: +118
Re: VCE English Question Thread
« Reply #734 on: October 25, 2015, 11:38:38 am »
+3
When doing a timed Section C, i don't waste time highlighting the page and annotating and instead just do this in my head. If i have to i will underline the words and just write about it. In that 20 mins you were planning and highlighting you could have been writing, and the assessors don't mark you on your highlighting skills - they don't even get to see it as you take the task book home!

So in reading time i would suggest just going over techniques and persuasive methods in your head and thinking of what you are going to write, rather than wasting valuable time as you could be up to 800-900

Update: Massive vouch for this method! I annotated for about 5 minutes instead of 15-20 and my word counts in an hour went from 650 -> 700 -> 750 -> 800 in just three practices! It just takes some time/practice to get used to, but it's fucken amazing :)

A side note, I got my hands on the 2011 VCAA Language Analysis (PM if anyone wants, because of copyright and shit), but I hear that it's really really shite, is it worth doing for practice?
« Last Edit: October 25, 2015, 11:42:00 am by 99.90 pls »
2014: Chinese SL (45)
2015: Literature (49) | English (45) | Mathematical Methods (44) | Specialist Mathematics (38) | Legal Studies (36)
ATAR: 99.85

Limited tutoring spots available for English and Literature in 2017! Currently taking groups of three to four students. Please don't hesitate to send me a message on AN with any queries you might have :)