English Faculty Update: Study Skills for English Examinations

It has been a busy term for the English Faculty at St Catherine’s as teachers are in the midst of units of study ranging from textual analysis, oral presentations and debates, comparative text study and the challenging analysis of language and argument. In the next week, all students at Years 9 to 11 will receive their examination details for English, EAL and Literature as we turn our attention to preparing every student for their mid-year examinations. This can cause stress as students manage the demands of their study and hone their study skills.

In English, the examinations allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the key units of study completed in Semester 1. Students are encouraged to practise their timed writing skills in the lead up to the examinations and study skills become a key focus in all the classes. Study skills are progressive and through each examination period, the students learn more about the best approach that suits them. Each student studies differently and it is crucial that students communicate with their teachers any concerns and areas of need before the examinations.

There are some specific study skills that as a Faculty we teach the students and continue to refine, beginning in Year 7 right through to Year 12. For parents, it is useful to understand that every subject has their own approach to study and developing the skills required.

Below are some key study areas and skills for English examinations.

  • Construct a quotation sheet for the text you are revising and study from it.
  • Practise writing plans and revision essays on the topics provided by your teachers. Question the topic and use the TEEL structure to assist with writing the essay
  • Practise writing essays and plans to time.
  • Re-read key parts of the text.
  • Rewrite your notes, make tables on key characters, themes and issues, and review them.
  • Re-read the essays you have written and review the teacher comments and feedback.
  • Create a list of any spelling words that you misspell. Learn how to spell the words.
  • For extension, read the articles and critical material in the resource booklets.
  • Create a vocabulary list/word bank of useful words to use in your essays.
  • Set up a time to meet with your teacher to discuss your revision and the areas you need to work on.
  • Make a study group and study together to share ideas and discuss the texts.
  • Avoid distractions, do not multitask and place all devices away from your study area.
  • Start studying now.

It is important to remember that the English teachers are here to support and assist students with their examination study and preparation.

Good luck!

Mrs Ceri Lloyd, Head of English