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CANADIAN ACADEMIC ENGLISH LANGUAGE

 

 

DIAGNOSTIC SAMPLE TEST

 

 

This booklet is designed to help you prepare for the CAEL DIAGNOSTIC.

 

As you may not be familiar with this kind of test, this booklet will give you an idea of what to expect when you actually write the CAEL DIAGNOSTIC.  It also gives you a chance to practice taking the test. You should remember, however, that the topic of this sample test is not the same as the topic of the CAEL DIAGNOSTIC that you will write.  The sample test is also somewhat easier and shorter than the CAEL DIAGNOSTIC.

 

Because your goal is academic study, the CAEL DIAGNOSTIC requires you to do what you would typically do in a college or university classroom – read academic texts and answer questions about them;  take notes while listening to a lecture; and use the information you have gathered to write an essay.

 

Research has shown that successful students use specific language skills and strategies as they read academic texts, take notes on academic lectures, and write academic essays.

 

The CAEL DIAGNOSTIC helps you to identify the skills and strategies you are using successfully and those that you need to practice.

 

Specifically, the CAEL DIAGNOSTIC is designed to both assess your strengths and weaknesses in English and to provide you with useful information about the particular aspects of your English that you need to improve.

 


HOW DO I USE THIS BOOKLET?

 

 

First, write the sample test, following the directions in the sample test itself.

 

 

When you have finished writing the sample test, use the information below.

 

1.         Each question in the CAEL DIAGNOSTIC requires you to use a particular skill or strategy to find the correct answer.  These are numbers listed in the boxes at the end of each question.

 

  1. At the end of the test there is a list of all the correct answers and the academic skills and strategies that were tested by each question in the reading and listening sections.

 

  1. If you answered a question incorrectly, you should place a check mark on the line next to the number of the skill or strategy tested by the question. This will give you a clearer idea of the specific skills and strategies in academic English that you need to develop in order to use English effectively to study.

 

  1. Also at the end of this sample test, you will find a list of questions to consider about your essay. You will also find a sample of a test essay. You should compare your own essay with the sample essay, using the questions as a guide.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

Sample Test (including readings)

 

page 3

 

Appendix 1 – Answer Key

 

page 19

 

Appendix 2 – Skills and Strategies

 

page 24

 

Appendix 3 – Listening Text

 

page 28

 

CANADIAN ACADEMIC ENGLISH LANGUAGE

DIAGNOSTIC SAMPLE TEST

 

 

TOPIC:  STUDYING ENGLISH FOR ACADEMIC PURPOSES

 

In this test, you will perform reading, listening, and writing tasks typical of a university course.

¨      You will first read and answer questions based on an academic text, which will provide background information on the topic of Studying English for Academic Purposes.

¨      To deepen your understanding of the topic, you will then listen to and answer questions based on a university lecture.

¨      Next, you will read and answer questions based on a second academic text.

¨      Finally, using the information in the readings and the lecture, you will write an essay in response to the following prompt:

 

How would the program at First Choice Language School

help you to improve your academic English skills?

The reading, listening, and writing tasks will take approximately 50 minutes to complete. The following table lists the point value of these tasks and the amount of time allotted to them.

 

 

TASK

TIME

POINTS

Reading 1

7 minutes

7 points

Listening

approximately 10 minutes (includes 2 minutes pre-listening and 3 minutes post-listening)

23 points

Reading 2

13 minutes

18 points

Writing

20 minutes

Band Placement

Total Time

50 minutes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


DO NOT TURN THE PAGE UNTIL YOU ARE INSTRUCTED TO DO SO.

Reading One: COURSE OUTLINE                                      (7 minutes / 7 points)

 

Answer the questions below based on the information provided in the reading. You do not have to write in complete sentences. Your answers will be evaluated based on content.

 

 

  1. 1.                  What is the name of the school?

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

                                                                                   

 

Skill: 13

 

  1. 2.                  What term and level is this course outline for?

(2 points)

_______________________________________________________________

 

_______________________________________________________________  

                                                                                 

 

Skill: 13

 

  1. 3.                  Name one way you will improve your listening skills in this class.

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

                                                                            

 

Skill: 9

  1. 4.                  What is the best evaluation you can receive in this course?

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

 

 

Skill: 10

  1. 5.                  List one thing you must have for this course.

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

                                                                                                       

 

Skills: 16, 19

 

 

 

GO ON TO THE NEXT PAGE

 

 

6.         List one thing you must do for this course.

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

                                                                                                       

 

Skill:  21

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


THIS IS THE END OF READING 1.

DO NOT TURN THE PAGE UNTIL YOU ARE INSTRUCTED TO DO SO.

 

 

 

 

Total Score for Reading 1_________

 

 

Skills to be Reviewed: _________________

(List skills from incorrectly answered questions.)

 


Listening Section                                                               (10 minutes/ 23 points)

 

You will now listen to a lecture on the topic of Studying for Academic Purposes. You will hear this lecture only once. You must answer the questions while you are listening to the lecture. The questions follow the sequence of the lecture.

You do not need to write in complete sentences. Your answers will be evaluated based on content.

At the end of the lecture you will have 3 minutes to review your answers.

You now have 2 minutes to read over the questions.

 

1.         What’s the weather like?  Check/ one.

(1 point)                      __ cool and cloudy

__ warm and rainy

__ cool and raining

__ cold and windy

 

Skill: 9

  1. 2.                  How do a lot of the students get to school? Check/ one.

(1point)                       __ by foot

__ by bus

__ by cab

__ by bike

 

Skill: 19

  1. 3.                  Fill in the chart below.

(10 points)                                      CLASS SCHEDULE

 

CLASS

 

DAY (OR DAYS)

 

TIME

 

ROOM

 

1 EXAMPLE OF ACTIVITY

 

C                     CORE

 

Mon., Wed.,

  • ___________
 

C

 

C

 

C                    practice all skills

C                    work in pairs

 

C                    Writing

 

  • Tuesday
 

C

 

C

 

C

 

C

 

C

 

C

 

C                    250

 

C

 

 

Skills: 11, 12, 15

  1. 4.                   Who goes on the special trips on Friday afternoon?

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

 

 

Skill:  21

GO ON TO THE NEXT PAGE

5.         Do you have to have a photograph of yourself to get a bus pass?

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

 

 

Skills:  8,

6.         Where is the gym?

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

 

 

Skill: 11

  1. 7.                  Fill in the blanks as the teacher talks.

(7 points)

 

 

You must also come to class ·                                  .   Of course, sometimes you may feel ·                            or you may miss your bus and ·                                  late.  If that happens, ·                          sure to tell your teacher and ·                    your classmates for the work you may have ·                                     .

 

   

Skills: 10, 19

 

8.         What is the class going to do next?  Check/ one.

(1 point)

__ write a business letter

__ have a short break

__ do a short writing exercise

__ write an academic essay

 

Skills: 7, 8, 19

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GO ON TO THE NEXT PAGE

Total Score for Listening_______________

 

 

Skills to be Reviewed: _________________

(List skills from incorrectly answered questions.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


THIS IS THE END OF THE LECTURE. 

You have three minutes to review your work. You may review your answers to both Reading 1 and the Listening section.

DO NOT BEGIN READING 2 UNTIL YOU ARE INSTRUCTED TO DO SO.


Reading Two: WRITING AN ACADEMIC ESSAY                              (15 minutes/ 18 points)

 

Answer the questions below based on the information provided in the reading. You do not have to write in complete sentences. Your answers will be evaluated based on content.

 

Part 1: Reading for Main Ideas

 

1.         Where do you think you might find this article? Put a √ check beside the correct answer.

(1point)                                              

___ a newspaper  
___ a magazine  
___ a text book  
  Skill: 2

 

2.         In which section would you find the answers to the following questions? Put the letter (a, b, c, or d) of the section in the blank.

(3 points)

 

___ What should you do if you want to add extra ideas after you begin to write your essay?  
___ What does the author think is the area of the plan where you should spend the most time?  
___ Why should you spend a few minutes planning your essay?  
  Skill: 4

 

 

Part 2: Reading for Details

Now read the article more carefully to find the answers to these questions.

 

3.         According to the author, what are three differences between writing an essay in an exam and writing an essay at home?

(3 points)

   
   
   
  Skill: 9

 

 

4.         Which stage of writing an exam essay will the author discuss in this article?

(1 point)

_________________________________________  
  Skill: 10

 

GO ON TO THE NEXT PAGE

5.         According to the author, what effect might a five-minute planning session have on your essay?

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

 

Skill: 8

 

6.         Using information from the text, fill in the chart describing the parts of an academic essay.

(3 points)

 

Part of Essay

Details

 

Introduction

  • _______________________

 

 
Body
  • _______________________

 

 
Conclusion
  • _______________________

 

 
  Skill: 18

 

7.         According to the author, what do you have to be careful about if you decide to add ideas that you haven’t included in your plan?

(2 points)

  • _______________________________________________________________

 

  • _______________________________________________________________

 

Skill: 13

 

8.         According to the author, what are two of the things you look for when you check you essay?

(2 points)

  • ______________________________________________________________

 

  • ______________________________________________________________

 

Skill: 10

 

9.         Look at the example of a plan for an exam essay. What was the second lecture in this course about?

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________

 

Skill: 19

GO ON TO THE NEXT PAGE

10.       What is the author’s opinion about the planning stage of an exam essay?

(1 point)

_______________________________________________________________  
  Skill: 16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


THIS IS THE END OF READING 2.

 

 

 

 

 

Total Score for Reading 2_______

 

Skills to be reviewed: _____________________

(List skills from incorrectly answered questions)

 

 

 

Total Test Scores

Reading

1 & 2

Listening
   


READING 1: COURSE OUTLINE

 

FIRSTCHOICELANGUAGESCHOOL

OTTAWA, ONTARIO

e-mail fstchoice@hotspot.com

 

COURSE OUTLINE: CORE

LEVEL 2

TERM: SPRING

INSTRUCTOR: WENDY SMITH

DAYS AND TIME: MON/WED/FRI  9:00 – 12:00

OFFICE: RM  227

HOURS WED 12:00 – 1:00

 

Note: Students must attend at least 70% of all classes to be awarded a final certificate.

 

GENERAL DESCRIPTION

 

This is a Beginning II Level course which offers practice in the four skills of reading, writing, listening, and speaking. The goal of this program is to improve your overall competency in using English for academic study. We will develop your speaking, listening, reading and writing, with an emphasis on communicating your ideas. The material is presented in thematic units in which you will participate in a variety of activities relating to one topic. The focus is on group and pair interaction.

 

SKILLS AND STRATEGIES

 

Each unit will present you with exercises and activities which will help you improve your

 

-reading skills – understanding main ideas, developing vocabulary, recognizing structure.

 

-writing skills – expressing agreement or disagreement,  using chronological order and comparison and contrast.

 

-listening skills - getting the main ideas, note-taking ,sharing information, developing grammatical awareness and competence,  dictation and guided response.

 

-speaking skills – asking and answering questions, presenting information formally and informally, and sharing opinions.

 

(Course Outline continued on the next page)

EVALUATION

 

You will be evaluated on class participation and completion of assignments using the following scale:

0–Outstanding

G–Good

S–Satisfactory

M–Marginal

U–Unsatisfactory

I–Incomplete

 

REQUIREMENTS

 

‚                   Organize your material in a 3-ring binder

 

‚                   Keep all your assignments and worksheets in this binder and to bring it to every class

 

‚                   Come to class on time – each late arrival will be noted – 2 late arrivals equal 1 absence

 

‚                   Participate to the best of your ability in all class activities and discussions

 

‚                   Tell your teacher if you will be absent and find out what assignments you are missing

 

‚                   Be prepared for all classes

 

‚                   Ask questions if there is anything you don’t understand

 

 

 

Please note: If you miss a class you are responsible for the day’s assignment and are expected to complete any assigned homework for the following class.

 

As a courtesy to others, please be on time.


READING 2: WRITING AN ACADEMIC ESSAY  by Marianna Spoots

 

Chapter 4

The Academic Essay in an Exam Setting

 

Part 1−The Importance of Planning

Writing an academic essay in an exam setting is quite different from writing in the comfort of your own home. In an exam, you have a limited amount of time to get your ideas down on paper, and you can’t use the dictionary or get the advice of a friend. Therefore, it may be useful for you to remember that there are at least two important stages when writing an exam essay: planning the essay, and writing the essay. Here we will examine how to effectively plan your essay by

a.   managing your time,

b.   organizing your ideas,

c.   following your plan, and

d.   checking your essay .

 

            a.         Managing Your Time

The planning of your essay includes managing your time. You should divide the exam time into three parts:

1. planning the essay;

2. writing the essay;

3. checking or editing the essay.

For example, if you have 30 minutes, you may want to spend 5 minutes planning your essay, 20 minutes writing it, and 5 minutes checking it for errors. You may feel that you need all thirty minutes to write. However, taking time to plan will result in a better essay. It doesn’t matter if it’s a bit shorter. In fact, a shorter essay may be more effective, if it is well organized and well thought out.

 

            b.         Organizing Your Ideas

As you know, an academic essay has three parts, the introduction, the body, and the conclusion. By allotting time to plan your essay, you will be sure to include these three essential parts. When you plan your essay, you need to decide what points you want to include. You should introduce the reader to these points in the introduction. In the body, you will develop these points, using details and examples. In the conclusion, you will quickly summarize the main points again.

 

You should pay particular attention planning the body of your essay. This is the most important and useful part of your plan. Here, you will write, in point form, the one idea you will talk about in each paragraph. You will quickly note what examples and details you will use to explain or support this idea. In this way you will be sure that you divide your essay into paragraphs, and that you know what you will write about in each paragraph.

 

            c.         Following Your Plan

Once you have completed your plan, it is time to use your plan to write your essay. You should try to follow your plan carefully. As you are writing, you may think of points that you forgot to include in your plan but you wish to add to your essay. You may add these points, but be careful not to wander too far away from your plan or get off your topic completely. You also have to be careful that you leave enough time to complete the conclusion before the exam time is over. Of course, when you are writing an essay in your home, you should add ideas, rewrite sections, and change your approach as many times as you like.

 

            d.         Checking Your Essay

When you have finished writing your essay, take the last few minutes of your exam time to re-read your work. Read carefully, looking for punctuation errors, such as lack of commas, periods, and capital letters. You should also look for minor spelling errors and grammar mistakes. When you are writing quickly, it is surprising how many careless mistakes you can make. Although these mistakes dont usually interfere with the meaning of your ideas, your essay will give a better impression if they have been corrected.

 

Conclusion

You may feel very nervous when you walk into a testing room to write an exam essay. It may seem that the best use of time is to start writing immediately and to hope that you say the right things. But with a little planning, you can produce a well-organized essay, with a clear introduction, body, and conclusion that expresses your ideas logically. It is much better to write a short, clear essay than a long confused one.

 

 

 

Example of a plan for an exam essay

Topic: How being involved in a sport helps children develop. (Information based on readings and lectures given in class.)

 

 

Introduction

many ways-talk about three

1.  develops bodies

2.  develops confidence

3.  develops ability to set goals

 

develops bodies

  • muscles (support – reading by Chapman)
  • heart
  • agility (support – lecture 2)
develops confidence

  • self-esteem
  • team building skills
  • positive relations with friends (support – reading by Johns)
develops ability to set goals

  • can see abilities improve (support – lecture 3)
  • see effects of hard work
  • practice setting higher and higher goals
Conclusion

all children benefit and have fun, too

 


WRITING SECTION                                       (20 minutes / Band Placement)

 

Using the information in the readings and the lecture, write an essay in response to the following prompt:

How would the program at First Choice Language School

help you to improve your academic English skills?

You will have 20 minutes for this task. You are advised to spend approximately 5 minutes planning your essay in the space provided on this page.

 

Please write at least 1 page. Your writing will be evaluated based on language, content, and organization.

 

DO NOT COPY DIRECTLY FROM THE READINGS.

 

Do your planning in the space provided below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEGIN YOUR WRITING ON THIS PAGE

 

Using the information in the readings and the lecture, write an essay responding to the following prompt:

How would the program at First Choice Language School

help you to improve your academic English skills?

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________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

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IF YOU NEED MORE SPACE, PLEASE WRITE ON THE BACK OF THIS PAGE

                                                                                                   

Appendix 1 : Answer Key

READING 1: COURSE OUTLINE

 

1.         (1)        First Choice Language School

 

2.         (2)        Spring, 2

 

3.         Name one way you will improve your listening skills in this class.

(1)        One of these: By getting the main ideas, note-taking, sharing information,

developing grammatical awareness and competence, dictation, guided response

 

4.         (1)        OOutstanding

 

5.         (1)        a 3-ring binder

 

6.         (1)        One of these:

  • come to class on time
  •  participate to the best of your ability in all class activities and discussions
    • tell your teacher if you will be absent and find out what assignments you are missing
    • be prepared for all classes
    • ask questions if there is anything you don’t understand


LISTENING SECTION

 

1.         (1)         / cool and raining

2.         (1)        / by bus

 

  1. Fill in the chart below.

(10)                                                     CLASS SCHEDULE

 

CLASS

 

DAY (OR DAYS)

 

TIME

 

ROOM

 

1 EXAMPLE OF ACTIVITY

 

  • CORE
 

  • Mon, Wed., Fri.
 

  • From 9:00 to 12:00
 

  • · 230
 

  • practice all skills
    • work in pairs

 

 

 

  • · Writing
 

 

  • · Tuesday
 

  • From 9:00 to 12:00
 

  • 243
 

  • different kinds of writing

(essays of comparison and contrast, essays of argument, summaries , reports)

 

 

  • · Speaking
 

 

  • Thursday
 

  • From 1:00 to 4:00
 

  • 250
 

formal and informal speaking (discussion, impromptu presentations of research, giving directions, formal presentation)

 

 

4.         (1)        the whole school

 

5.         (1)       Yes

 

6.         (1)        across the street from the school

 

7.         (7)      .   on   .    time   , .   sick     , .    arrive  , .  be    .,    ask   , .   missed.

 

8.         (1)        / do a short writing exercise


READING 2: WRITING AN ACADEMIC ESSAY

 

Part 1: Reading for Main Ideas

Skim the article quickly to answer the following questions.

 

1.         (1)

4 a text book

 

2.         (3)

   c What should you do if you want to add extra ideas after you begin to write your essay?
   b According to the author, in which section of the plan should you spend the most time?
   a Why should you spend a few minutes planning your essay?

 

Part 2: Reading for Details

Now read the article more carefully to find the answers to these questions.

 

3.         (3)

limited amount of time
can’t use dictionary
can’t ask for advice from friends (any two)

 

4.         (1)

planning your essay

 

5.         (1)

better essay or shorter or well organized

 

 

6.         (3)

Part of Essay

Details

Introduction

  • introduce reader to your points
Body
  • develop these points with details and examples
conclusion
  • summarize main points

 

7.         (2)        not to wander too far away from your plan/get off topic/be careful to have enough time to complete conclusion (any 2)

 

8.         (2) (any 2 of 6)

  • punctuation
  • lack of commas
  •  lack of  periods
  •  and lack of capital letters
  • minor spelling errors
  • grammar mistakes

 

9.         (1)

agility

 

10.       (1)

Helps you to write a better essay (or some such idea).

 

Total Score for Reading 2_______

 

Total Reading#1&2

Total

Listening

   

 


 

WRITING (Sample Essay)                                                                                                                  (20 minutes/50 points)

 

You will have 20 minutes to write an essay responding to the following statement.

 

 

How would the program at First Choice Language School

help you to improve your academic English skills?

 

After my first day at First Choice Language School I feel confident about the choice I made to study here.  I think that I will learn a lot in the next few weeks and I think well have some fun, too.  There are several things I really like about the way the program is organized.  I think its a good idea to have one class focused on writing and one class focused on speaking.  I also think it will be good to work in small groups to practice speaking and listening as much as possible.  Finally, the trips to the museums and other interesting places will help us get to know each other.

 

Writing and speaking are both very important, especially if you want to study in English.  In this school we will have two special teachers who just help us to develop our writing and speaking.  In this way, even if you dont like to write or to speak in front of a group, you will have to do it, so it means we get practice in two difficult areas.

 

Sometimes, in a language class you spend all the time listening to the teacher and there isnt time for you to practice speaking.  In this school, we spend a lot of time talking in pairs and groups, so we have a lot of time practicing ourselves.  That way we can feel more confident about our language.

 

The trips to museums and other places will be fun because it gives us a chance to use our English in a relaxed way with other students.  We can talk to people from other countries and get used to many different accents.  We can also get to know the city so that after class we will feel more comfortable about going out.  

 

I like this course. I think it will help us learn the kind of English we will need to study at English universities, and we will enjoy talking to each other and learning about other cultures. 


Appendix 2: Skills and Strategies

 

In this section you will learn more about your own strengths and weaknesses in English.

 

READING SKILLS AND STRATEGIES FEEDBACK SHEET

 

For each skill that was incorrect on Reading 1 and Reading 2, put a check beside the same number.

 

Example:   1. What is the name of the school?

(1)        First Choice Language School

 

If you had the answer wrong put a check beside skill 13          /   Predicting location of necessary information based on identifying key words in the question and finding them in the article.

 

Skills examined in the sample test:

 

 

8.         Recognizing how examples and specific details relate to or support the main idea.

 

9.         Identifying supporting details of main idea.

 

10.          Identifying separate parts of a list.

 

13.          Predicting location of necessary information based on identifying key words in the question and finding them in the article.

 

 

16.          Arriving at a conclusion.

 

18.          Classifying information according to given categories. For example, filling in a chart.

 

19.          Summarizing or interpreting information.

 

21.          Understanding unfamiliar vocabulary in context.

 

22.           Recognizing synonyms.

 

 

SKILLS AND STRATEGIES (continued)

 

LISTENING SKILLS AND STRATEGIES FEEDBACK SHEET

 

For each skill or strategy that was incorrect on the listening test, put a check beside the same number.

 

Example: 1.What’s the weather like?

(1)        cool and raining

 

If you had the wrong answer put a check beside Skill 7          /    choosing the correct version of an item. For example a multiple choice question presents several versions of the information and only one is correct.

 

Skills examined in the sample test:

 

 

7.         Ability to follow a description of a process or event by recognizing the use of such words as first, then, after that.

 

8.        Understanding and following spoken directions.

 

9.        Choosing the correct version of an item. For example, a multiple choice questions presents several versions of the information and only one is correct.

 

10.        Recognizing what a list consists of.  For example, is the lecturer discussing steps in a process, reasons, examples, or consequences?

 

 

11.        Determining details about an item. For example, listening for a date, length, location.

 

12.        Classifying information according to given categories. For example entering information in a chart, on a list, or on a graph.

 

15.         Recognizing information that describes a general subject and its details and entering it in a chart.

 

19.         Guessing vocabulary from context.

 

21.         Recognizing the answer to the specific question words – who, what, where, when, why, and how.

 

 

 

 


SKILLS AND STRATEGIES (continued)

 

HOW CAN I USE THE SAMPLE ESSAY TO HELP ME EVALUATE MY OWN WRITING?

 

Examining your essay

 

Look at your essay and compare it to the sample essay using the following questions as a guide.

 

First, think about the content of your essay

 

  1. Does the information in your essay answer the essay question?  Look at the sample essay.  The writer answers the essay question by describing exactly which features of the program s/he thinks will help to improve her\his ability to speak English.

 

  1. Are your ideas developed? Look at the sample essay.  There may be many ways the school will help the writer to improve English, but s/he has focused on only three.  Instead of making a list of all the ways the school will help, the writer has chosen three and written a few details to support and extend the information about each one.

 

  1. Does your essay have an introduction? Look at the introduction to the sample essay.  The first sentence introduces the general topic—the writer feels happy about studying at the FirstChoiceLanguageSchool.  The second sentence introduces the specific focus of this essay—exactly why s/he feels happy about the school.  The rest of the paragraph introduces the points that will be discussed in the essay, in the order they will be discussed (see Question 2 above). Does your introduction follow this general outline?

 

4.         Does your essay have a conclusion? Notice that it restates the main idea of the introduction—the writer feels happy about studying at this school.  It also gives a very brief summary of the ideas expressed in the body of the essay.  Does your conclusion follow this general outline?

 

Now, look at the overall organization of your essay.

 

5.         Does your essay have paragraphs? You should have at least three paragraphs—one for the introduction, one for the body, and one for the conclusion.  You may have more paragraphs depending on the number of points you are developing.

 

  1. How many points do you develop in your essay? The sample essay develops three points about the school: a) separate classes for writing and speaking; b)pair and group work; c)trips allowing all the students to get to know each other.  There is a separate paragraph for each point in the body of the essay.

 

 


Think about the language you use in your essay

 

7.         Have you used a variety of vocabulary?  Is there one word that you use many times?  If there is, see if you can replace it with other words.

 

8.         Have you tried to use punctuation correctly?  Check to be sure you start each sentence with a capital letter and end it with a period.  Do you use commas and quotation marks (if necessary) correctly?

 

9.         Have you checked your spelling?  Sometimes you may make careless mistakes when you are writing quickly.

 

10.       Have you checked your grammar?   For example, check to be sure that the verb agrees with the subject. If you start with a plural, is it plural throughout? Are you aware of a mistake that you usually make? Have you checked to see if you made that mistake in your essay?

 

Look at the appearance of your essay.

 

11        Is your essay about the same length as the sample essay?  It should be about 1 page in length.

 

12.       Is your handwriting easy to read?  Although you dont get marks because your handwriting is clear, if the marker can’t read your writing this may result in a lower score.

 

 

 

Appendix 3: Listening Text

WELCOME TO FIRST CHOICE

Welcome to FirstChoiceLanguageSchool. I hope you will all enjoy your time here and make many new friends from other countries.  It’s too bad that it is raining and cool today. I know a lot of you had to take the bus to come here this morning, and you probably got wet in the rain. But the weather forecast says that it will get sunny tomorrow and by Friday it will be quite hot.

As today is your first class I want to tell you a little about the program here. First of all, my name is Wendy and I will be your core teacher. We will be meeting every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9:00 to 12:00 in room number 230. In our core class, we will do a lot of different activities where we practice all the skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. We will be working in pairs and in groups so you can get as much practice as possible using English.

Louise is your writing teacher and she will be helping you to write about your ideas. You will meet Louise tomorrow from 9:00 to 12:00 in room 243. You will practice different kinds of writing: essays of comparison and contrast, essays of argument, summaries and reports.

On Thursday from 1:00 to 4:00 in the afternoon you will practice speaking in room 250. Your teacher is Anne. She will help you develop your formal and informal speaking skills in several different ways: discussion, impromptu presentation of research findings, giving directions. You will probably give a prepared formal presentation in front of the class.

On Friday afternoons we usually take the whole school on a field trip. Sometimes we go to art galleries or museums, or we might go to government buildings or business. We will often listen to guests speakers or participate in discussions.

Now, there are a couple of things I need to tell you. One is that you can get a student bus pass from the school. At noon you can go to the Transportation office on the 4th floor where you can have your picture taken. Then you can get a bus pass that will allow you to go anywhere in the city. All you have to do is show the pass to the driver of the bus and he will let you on without having to pay any money.

You will also be given a membership to the gym. You can get this by going to the Sports Office after class with your student number. With this membership you can go into the gym across the street from the school and use the pool, the exercise room, and the tennis court. You can even sign up for some classes like boxing. It’s a great way to meet Canadians and practice your English.

One other thing I need to remind you of is that you must attend all your classes. You must also come to class on time. Of course, sometimes you may feel sick or you may miss your bus and arrive late. If that happens, be sure to tell your teacher and ask your classmates for the work you may have missed.

Well, that’s all the business I can think of. Let’s get on with our class. The first exercise is a short writing. I’d like you to describe the components of an academic essay.

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