Monday, August 20, 2012







Process and Procedure

The steps an ice sculpture is produced and the tools used for sculpting.


Cause and Effect

(Problem and Solution)

The hardships faced by villagers after the floods and landslides and the assistance obtained after the tragedy.


Process and Procedure

The steps to plant a young tree.


Process and Procedure

The steps on how a leopard attacked the writer and what was done to help himself.


Process and Procedure

The steps taken by Malik to help his wife to return to her job and the problems he faced in doing so.


Cause and Effect

The ways people can show acts of kindness and the benefits gained from acts of kindness.


Process and Procedure

The ways writer showed her love and care for the hummingbird.

Based on analysis of past years questions, process and procedure is the most popular type of questions for Section C (Reading and Comprehension).


· The questions are usually set in sequence order, usually from the easiest to the most challenging questions. For the easy questions, candidates could easily locate the answers in the text by matching the key words in the questions and the text.

· To make the questions even easier, the numbers of paragraphs where the answers could be found were also given as to guide candidates where to get the answers.

· There would usually be five main questions given and one or two other sub questions for each main question.

· For questions 26 – 29 :

Ø The beginning of the questions usually would be very user-friendly as they just require the candidates to locate the answers from the passage. The answers would be very direct and it would be easier for them to locate the answer. The famous wh-question which is always used is ‘what’. Sometimes, ‘which’, ‘when’ and ‘who’ are also used but very seldom. This type of question usually only tests the candidates’ understanding and knowledge of the text.

Ø As the questions progress, they would be more difficult and wh-questions like ‘why’ and ‘how’ are used as they demand the candidates to think more critically whereby they have to give their answers logically, so that those answers can be accepted.

Ø A very famous question would also be on the vocabulary question which is always meant to be difficult but candidates would have guessed for the meaning of the words based on the number of low frequency word in the paragraph.

Ø Some of the questions asked also require the candidates to guess the answers based on the key words given, whereby the answers are usually placed after the key words. However, candidates need to guess intelligently.

Ø Some questions would ask for the reference words like ‘he’, ‘they’ or ‘it’ and candidates need to guess these pronouns refer to what or whom. The answer for this type of question usually is given before the pronoun mentioned.

Ø Sometimes there would be too much information given that it would lead to some inaccurate answers from weaker students who failed to comprehend the question. Thus, students really have to read and comprehend the passage as well as identify the key words in order to be able to get the correct answers.

Ø The answers usually can be taken from the text but candidates must select the answers (in phrases or sentences) intelligently. Candidates are advised not to paraphrase their answers for being feared of changing the meaning of words. If meaning has changed after the candidates try to paraphrase, they will be penalized, means that no marks will be awarded. Nevertheless, it is permissible if students still want to paraphrase their answers but be careful not to change the meaning.

Ø When answering the questions by taking a phrases or a sentence from the passage, students cannot copy the whole sentence/s, including copying the irrelevant part (that is not the answer) or else marks will not be awarded. Instead, students must answer and select the permissible phrase and sentence only.

Ø When answering the question too, students are not supposed to commit error like over lifting the pronouns ‘I’ or ‘my’. By over lifting the pronouns ‘I’ or ‘my’, the answer is considered wrong even if the students managed to copy the correct part of the answer. Students would not be awarded any marks for the over lifting of the pronoun ‘I’ or ‘my’.

Ø Make sure students are aware of the difference between word, phrase and sentence as it is vital in answering some of the comprehension questions.

Ø If the question asked for ‘evidence’, students can quote any phrase or sentence from the text, and students cannot paraphrase the answers. If the question asked for a piece of evidence, then just give one phrase or one short sentence, but if two pieces of evidence, then give two phrases.

· For question 30 :

Ø The last question usually elicits personal response from the candidates. This type of question is good in the sense that it makes candidates think logically and rationally before coming up with the answers.

Ø Students need to be careful as there are two types of this question. The first type usually asks for use of own words, in which students usually give their own opinion or personal response based on the understanding of the passage (but do not take ideas or examples in the text). However, another type of question is when the question asked students to answer based on the text but then students cannot copy the answer directly, instead they are required to paraphrase the answers in the text using own words. If students take the answers completely from the text without any paraphrasing, no marks will be awarded.


1. Read the text and questions at least twice.

2. Learn to look for clues and use contextual clues.

3. Understand the fundamental needs of the Wh-questions.

4. Look for answers in the given paragraphs. Select intelligently phrases or sentences.

5. Understand key words in the questions.

6. Change the pronouns accordingly when lifting answers.

7. Attempt all the questions.

8. Give straightforward and precise answers.

9. Give logical opinion.

10. Be adept at using a wide range of vocabulary.

11. Expose oneself to the use of figurative language.

12. Expose oneself to the key words such as ‘word, ‘phrase’ and ‘sentence’ which are vital in answering some comprehension questions.

13. Make it a habit to look up the meaning of difficult words encountered when reading during the teaching and lesson period. A good dictionary is a must.

14. Do more comprehension exercises by reading various types of comprehension passages / reading materials other than those in text/revision books, such as newspaper articles and magazines.


1. Read the instructions given carefully.

2. Read the summary question/s carefully.

3. Just summarize from the lines given.

4. Mark the particular paragraphs that are supposed to be summarized like drawing a box or square on the particular summarized section.

5. There will usually be three or four points in each paragraph.

6. Identify the main ideas based on the summary question/s asked.

7. Read every sentence carefully and ask yourself whether it answers the summary question/s. If it does, underline the main phrase/sentence but if it does not, ignore it and move to the next line. Do so until the last line mentioned.

8. Do not forget to include the 10 words given.

9. Just write up to 130 words as any points after the permissible number of words given, the points will not be identified as relevant.

10. Give more than 10 points to be on the safe side (Usually there are more than 10 points – maximum can go up to 14 points).

11. Change the pronouns accordingly when lifting answers.

12. Write the summary points in sequence order.

13. Be extra careful when rephrasing or using own words (most students lose mark for changing meaning of words).

14. Organize specific information coherently.

15. Paraphrase concisely and use Standard English accurately (gain marks for Language: 5 Marks)


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