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ENGLISH
Asked by Vishal

How do you write a long essay in an exam, when you don't have much time? How do you include enough detail, but not over do it and lose time? How do you write succinctly and get your point across clearly?

I suggest spending between 7-10 minutes writing a plan - draft what you will write in the introduction and come up with your main points and examples. Then when you come to writing your essay, the introduction should always answer the question. It is good to give a little bit of background knowledge about the topic you are writing about, but only a sentence as you don’t want to give the impression to the examiner that you have misread the question. Then answer the question directly with your points (‘In my opinion ......... is because of point a, point b and point c). The body of your essay should consist of the points you want to cover. Use a separate paragraph for each point, and address each one with the acronym PEEL: Point Example Explanation Link (back to the title) Often the explanation part is the bit that gets you most of the marks (this is the analysis part of the essay) so make sure you always think this part through! Also make sure that you’re not going off topic - by sticking to the question, you’ll be saving yourself time - and don’t waffle on too much on one point. Make sure that you include the best examples for your point so you don’t have to keep adding to it as this will also save time - one or two good examples will be fine! Finally, your conclusion should be a summary of your essay, similar to your introduction. Answer the question with your points again, and always give your opinion! The key to saving time is to not write about anything off topic - make sure you don’t write sentences that go over many lines, keep them short and sweet!

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Sumei Bao-Smith
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