IGCSE – International General Certificate Secondary Examination is an internationally reputed organization offering high-quality education across the globe. The target audience is students in the age group 14-16 years. Like all other modern education systems, IGCSE offers a range of subjects and encourages high academic excellence through a practical approach to teaching and learning. There are five subject groups with several subjects to choose from each group. A few examples are suggested for each subject group.
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Most of the subjects offer a choice between Core Curriculum and Extended Curriculum. The Core curriculum is an overview of the subjects for students who want to achieve grades C to G. And the Extended curriculum is more challenging than its Core counterpart for students aiming for grades A8 to C.
The assessment is not limited only to conventional written papers. A variety of tests like oral presentation and listening tests are also conducted. The grades awarded to the students are in the range A* to G – A* being the highest and G the lowest.
IGCSE English offers the students a choice between English as a first language (EFL) and English as a second language (ESL)
There are five assessment papers to this course. Paper 1 and Paper 2 are the reading and writing sections for the Core and Extended levels respectively. Paper 3 and Paper 4 are the listening sections for the Core and Extended levels respectively. Paper 5 is the speaking task section meant for both the levels.
Both the papers of the ESL require the students to attempt as described below
The writing section for both paper 1 and paper 2 has final exercises (exercise 6) for the student to write an article, a report, or a review.
You will be presented with a passage for the article writing. Read through the passage carefully. The question also will be presented. You need to write your views and opinions in response to the questions picking the relevant points in the passage. You are allowed to pick a side – for or against the author or you can write a two sided one too.
Always plan what you need to write – whether it is one sided or a two-sided article. You are allowed to write on the space available to do your rough work.
Here is an example of how the question is presented in an examination
This is usually specified in the questions presented. Most of the time it is an article for a school magazine like the sample question given above. Knowing the audience is always important, so that your language, tone, and the vocabulary reflect the right people you are targeting.
Unless mentioned, you are allowed to do a two – sided article. Consider the sample question below.
In this question you have the option to choose one – reading stories or listening to stories or you might want to consider both the options. Or you can choose either one to develop your article. In case you want to play safe and score well, it is better to do one sided- arguments.
An effective introduction is to be such that entices the reader. You can describe the topic you are writing about and how important the topic is in the present world. Or if it is a problem, then why does such a problem exist? Use good introduction phrases to make the introduction effective and catchy.
This is the main section of your article writing. Usage of good vocabulary words enhances your article. You need to write three points or supporting statements to defend your point of view in case you are attempting an one-sided article. But if you are doing a two-sided article you need to give two supporting statements for either side, so in total you are writing four points. Develop the body paragraphs using these supporting statements. Also, the prompts given in the questions can be used.
This is the final section of your article. In this section you need to sum up all your points and give your final opinion. Do not summarize the introduction and the content you have discussed in the body paragraphs. You should focus on presenting your personal opinion and are allowed to give suggestions or put in a rhetorical question that will give something the reader can ponder on after reading the article.
Now that you have come up with the content for your article, here are some tips for organising your article.
If you are attempting a one-sided article:
If you are attempting a two-sided article:
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