Exam Paper One and TwoThis is a featured page

For paper 1 there are four criteria.
For paper 2 there are five criteria.

Written examination papers
At SL and at HL there are two examination papers that are set and marked externally. They are designed to allow students to demonstrate their competencies in relation to the language A: language and literature assessment objectives and to specific parts of the syllabus. Paper 1 is linked to the skill of textual analysis
and paper 2 is linked to the literary works studied in part 3. In both examination papers students are expected to support their answers with specific references to,
where appropriate, literary or non-literary texts—in paper 1 with references to the unseen extract(s), and in paper 2 with references to the works studied in part 3. Retelling of the plot or content of a work or extract is not expected in any component of the assessment.


Assessment SL:
Paper 1: Textual analysis of ONE text from a choice of two texts marked out of 20 marks.
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
Weighting: 25%

Assessment HL:

External assessment details—HL
Paper 1: Comparative textual analysis marked out of 20 marks.
Duration: 2 hours
Weighting: 25%
Paper 1 contains two pairs of previously unseen texts for comparative analysis. The pairing could include
two non-literary texts or one literary and one non-literary text. There will never be two literary texts in a pair. Each pair will be linked in such a way that invites investigation of similarities and differences. Students are instructed to compare and analyse one of the pairs of texts, including comments on the similarities and differences between the texts, the significance of any possible contexts, audience and purpose, and the use of linguistic and literary devices.

A pair may include complete pieces of writing or extracts from longer pieces, or a combination of these. The provenance of all texts will be clearly indicated. One of the two pairs may include one visual text. This could be an image with or without written text. The texts for analysis are not necessarily related to specific parts of the syllabus. The links between texts will be varied and could include theme, genre features or narrative stance. Different text types are included, for example:
• advertisement
• opinion column
• extract from an essay
• electronic text (such as social networking sites, blogs)
• brochure (such as a public information leaflet)
• extract from a memoir, diary or other autobiographical text
• poem
• extract from a screenplay
• extract from a novel or short story
• press photograph
• satirical cartoon.

Students are required to analyse, compare and comment on the texts in the light of their understanding of audience and purpose. In order to achieve this, students need to analyse structure, language and style in addition to aspects such as text type, context, bias and/or ideological position.

The comparative analysis should be continuous and structured, include relevant examples from the texts and be balanced in its comments on the similarities and differences between the texts. Rather than simply isting formal aspects, students should focus on how such aspects are used to create particular effects. The paper is assessed according to the assessment criteria published in this guide. The maximum mark for paper 1 is 20.



Paper 2: Essay
Duration: 2 hours for HL, 1 hour 30 minutes for SL
Weighting: 25%

Paper 2 consists of six questions based on the literary texts studied in part 3 of the language A: language and literature course. Students are required to answer one question only.

The format of paper 2 and the six questions are the same for both SL and HL students.

However, there are specific assessment criteria for each level, reflecting different expectations in terms of the complexity and depth of the students’ responses. Students will be expected to respond to questions in a way that shows their understanding of the learning outcomes demanded in part 3 of the course. They are expected to refer to at least two of the texts they have studied in class, analysing the works in the light of the way in which the contexts of production and reception affect their meaning. The following examples pinpoint some areas of discussion that students need to consider in their classwork while preparing for the assessment.

• Which social groups are omitted from a text, and what might this reflect about its production?
• What do you think of the assertion that the meaning of a text is fixed and does not change over time?
• How does a particular term or concept, such as childhood, change in the way it is represented in the
texts you have studied?
• How is our critical perspective on literary texts affected by cultural practices?
• To what purpose do authors sometimes choose not to follow a chronological sequence of events in
their literary works?
• How valid is the assertion that literature is a voice for the oppressed?
• To what extent is the critical approach taken to the analysis of a text itself influenced by specific
cultural practices?

These ideas may be used interchangeably with those given at SL.

The paper is assessed according to the assessment criteria published in this guide. The maximum mark for paper 2 is 25.


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