In this article, I will try to stress how you should go about writing an essay, especially those taking a GP (HSC) Cambridge paper.
Before going further, I assume you have read my 2 previous articles:
1) Writing – The Why And The Essence
2) How to write good english
Note: If you haven’t done so yet, please go read them and then get back to this one. (You should at least read ‘article 2’ above)
That said, lets get to work..
Writing an essay, especially an english GP essay, is something which can be very very interesting and easy to do. Yes, I know what I’m talking about from my own personal experiences! I was very weak in writing essays, perhaps partly due to the fact that I was a science student (you should have heard about this line from your teacher )
But with a correct strategy and correct personal commitments, you can achieve what I was able to achieve (that is an A, A+, A++ in almost all my gp essays).
Aim Of A Cambridge General Paper Essay
Let us consider some few points:
Why do we have to write an essay ? (ask yourself first and then look down.. 😉 )
1) To show (to the examiner) that we can comfortably express our thoughts and opinion in a clear, simple, effective and persuasive manner.
2) To show that we can fluently and maturely use the chosen language. (Read How to write good english)
3) To show that we can analyse, argue and discuss a given topic very intelligently and creatively
Very often, students fail to choose a correct topic to write their essay, ending up in a waste of time and effort. This gives rise to a stressful mind, especially in exams where your time is limited. Consequently, they fail to deliver a good essay and perhaps without finishing it on time. So, next we have:
Choosing The Correct A-Level GP Essay Title
– As a GP (general Paper) student, and hence for your gp essay writing, you are expected to have a general knowledge on almost any topic, coupled with a fluency and maturity in your langauge.
- A) How to display fluency in our language? Read How to write good english
- B) How to have a general knowledge on topics?
1) Participate actively in ALL your GP classes.
I never attended a class passively, I always participate, discuss, challenge and argue (sensible discussions) with my teacher. (I finally ended up as leading the class , ssshhh, keep it for yourself 🙂 )
Don’t be shy, you will do mistakes, but most importantly you will learn from these mistakes to become better! So now on, don’t sleep in your classes, go rock that GP class!
2) Write down new, useful and prominent words or ideas that your teacher or any other student might have said.
Once at home, re-read them and make additional notes (make sure you read the trick I taught you in my article How to write good english) use the Internet or any other related informative materials to enrich your knowledge. These early months of your HSC classes are the most determining part. If you have not given enough time, you will not be able to absorb much information in your head.
3) Get to know topics beforehand
Your teacher will probably point out what he will be doing for the next class. So, go and get as much information as you can about that topic.. read them several times, structure them in order of “introductory info“, “benefits/advantages“, “consequences/disadvantages” and/or “any conclusive parts“.
4) Get a love and enthusiasm in your reading and collection of information.
Things should be to such a point that ideas start flowing in your head in a logical manner. Just a thought – If I ask you about Pamela Anderson, you will say more than you are being asked. Why? Because you have surely read, heard or seen things about her and most importantly this is an area of interest to you! (except if you a girl of course 😛 )
Writing The General Paper Essay – Structure of your Essay
1) Introductory Part (this should be 1 paragraph) – Give a small clear definition or explanation of what you will be talking about.
2) Body of your Essay – (This should normally span to 8 paragraphs, but not too lengthy) Elaborate on 4 advantages and 4 disadvantages of the defined topic in paragraph 1. Give examples as and when needed!
3) Conclusion – (this should be 1 paragraph) – Give a small conclusion on your own and if possible suggest a solution or any recommendation. This really makes for a good conclusion.
So, in all we have around 10 well balanced paragraphs. This surely makes for a fully-fledged essay within the expected number of words (as per the exam essay rules)
IMPORTANT POINTS TO REMEMBER:
=> You are NOT supposed to prove the subject title of your essay! You should discuss and analyse it!
=> Give at least one example in each discussion or whenever you are elaborating an advantage or disadvantage. NEVER EVER write a GP Essay without an example! You will lose much points and credibility (in the eyes of your examiner)
=> Each paragraph should talk about ONLY 1 specific idea.
=> Make your paragraph fluent, make it flow. Do not just change paragraph abruptly.
=> Make your gp essay lively and convincing! You can write the most foolish essay, but if you write it in a convincing manner and with maturity, you will score the required marks! I know what I’m saying, trust me on that!