Examination Text Structure as an Indicator of Examination Task Type and Complexity (On the Basis of GCSE English Language Unit 1 Section A Reading)

Yuliya N. Gorelova, Ekaterina O. Zalyaeva, Dilyana D. Sungatullina


This paper investigates expository and narrative structures of examination texts for reading purposes implemented in General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) English Language Unit 1 Section A Reading). 48 texts (taken from real exam papers GCSE English Language Foundation and Higher, developed and used by Assessment and Qualifications Alliance (AQA) in 2011-2013) constituted the material of the study. The aim of the research is to define the organizational structure of the examination texts in order to help the candidates cope with tasks successfully. Such research methods as semantic analysis, qualitative and quantitative methods, descriptive statistics have led to the results, which can be applied by both test- makers and candidates. Thorough investigation of their structural features, content and keywords as well as tasks accompanying the texts revealed that text structure has a direct impact on the type of tasks and questions proposed to a candidate in exam likewise their complexity. When developing examination tasks and questions test-makers should take into consideration peculiarities of each text structure and establish methodological guidelines for the potential candidates to pass the exam swimmingly.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2015.v6n3s2p414

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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