Develop a better understanding of the JC GP syllabus
Students that aspire for academic success are advised to develop greater awareness of the A Level General Paper syllabus (8807), which teaches students about the different issues that are discussed activity by many. These issues can be observed at various levels, such as individual, organization, national, and international. In addition, the discussion cover broad-ranging topics, such as climate change, social media, and science and technology. Hence, it is imperative for students to find out more about the latest developments relating to General Paper and how they can prepare for the examination.
How will students be assessed at the A Level GP examination?
As stated in the Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board (SEAB), the A Level GP examination comprises of two papers that students are required to complete: Paper 1 and Paper 2. Each of the papers utilize a different set of skills. Nevertheless, students can use their broad and in-depth understanding of different issues to answer questions in both papers.
Paper 1 (Essay)
Paper 1, also known as the GP essay writing section, requires students to select one out of twelve essay questions. Then, students must write an essay of 500 to 800 words within 1 hour 30 minutes. Paper 1 occupies 50% of the overall grade.
As the essay questions relate to issues from different disciplines, such as culture, youths, marriage, and social media, it is important for students to read widely and identify the key issues. To do well in the GP essay paper, students must develop proficient writing skills, such as paragraph development, point elaboration, and substantiation of evidence. It is more crucial for students to express their arguments in cogent and clear forms than to memorise case study examples to support their points.
Paper 2 (Comprehension)
Paper 2, also known as the GP comprehension section, requires students to complete a set of short answer questions, summary writing, and application question (AQ). All these questions relate to the given text, which can either be in one or two passages. Students are given 1 hour and 30 minutes to complete Paper 2, which also occupies 50% of the overall grade.
To excel in Paper 2, students must develop the necessary comprehension answering techniques, such as idea extraction, inference, and synthesis of information. For the summary writing aspect, students must apply word substitution to congest ideas and retain the key message of the paraphrased text. As for the Application Question (AQ), students must learn to interpret the passage and extract out the underlying implications of the writer’s intent.
To find out more, please read more about the 2017 A Level General Paper (8807) syllabus.
What are the skills required to excel in the A Level GP examination?
The key ingredients for success at the A Level General Paper examination comprise of the GP essay writing skills and comprehension answering techniques. On top of the comprehension of topics and discussion of issues, students must refine their skills to handle the complexity of questions. Students of Generalpaper.com.sg will be guided by the JC GP tutors to facilitate the attainment and improvement of thinking and writing skills.
GP essay writing skills
For GP essay writing skills development, students should approach the subject by undertaking consistent essay practices. Following the thematic-based discussion of issues in our GP tuition classes, students will learn how to set clear and concise introduction that encompasses the main message of the essay and the arguments put forth. The main body writing will be done with the utilization of paragraph development skills. A well-structured essay enables the examiners to follow the train of thought of students. Also, the elaboration of points must be coherent. Through multiple attempts over a sustained period of time, students will eventually achieve an optimal level of writing standard.
GP comprehension answering techniques
For GP comprehension skills development, students are trained in the GP tuition classes to read the passages purposefully. This means that they are required to annotate the crucial parts of the passage and explain to the GP tutors what these extracted sections mean. The interpretation of ideas put forth by the author will be helpful in the nurturing of inference skills. The comprehension practice questions provide context to the relevance of the skills-based application. In addition, the summary writing skills are developed in terms of information extraction and paraphrasing of ideas. Word substitution skills are necessary to tackle questions that specify ‘in your own words’. Finally, the Application Question (AQ) focuses on the usage of personal opinion development skills to identify the message of the writer and relating to the student’s own views regarding the discussed issue in the passage.
Latest trends of the JC GP examination
In view of the recent A Level GP examinations, the areas of focus have changed significantly, which will affect the study plan of students. For Paper 1, the GP essay questions are no longer set in independent themes. This implies that students should expect questions that interlink themes, like economic issues with environment. Students must avoid spotting topics during their revision phase. Given these considerations, students should practise writing essays with the utilization of categorization skills. By learning to examine issues from multiple perspectives, students can cover the scope of assessment adequately and provide comprehensive analysis of issues.
For Paper 2, the GP comprehension topics are shifting towards reflective issues, such as the significance of national identities, value of travelling, and individualism versus collectivism. These topics are comparatively more abstract than the direct and relatable issues, like environmental pollution. Also, the short answer questions require students to paraphrase ideas from the passage and apply inference skills to interpret the writer’s intent. To detect the subtleties of certain phrases and words, students are encouraged to read widely, such as the opinion editorial (also known as op-ed, in short). The topics discussed by writers in this newspaper column are relatable to the comprehension passages, thus illustrating its usefulness for exam preparation.