How one assessment helps another…

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How can one assessment help with another?

Have you shown how well you read the stories? Try to write a little bit about these three things in the essay in order to score well on Criterion A

            A) Setting – How is it important to understanding the context?

            B) Plot – Was there a twist, a climax, a conflict that was of particular importance?

            C) Narrative technique – Who is telling the story? Why did the author choose to tell it this way?

Metaphor – X is Y. “The sun was in his smile”. Obviously this is not realistically possible. A metaphor is basically when a thing/person/object/whatever is described as literally BEING something it can’t possibly be, for the sake of creating an effect.


Simile – very similar to a metaphor BUT with the critical concept of being ‘like’ something, instead of actually being something. So “His smile was like the sun”. Also creates an effect, but the critical difference between a simile and a metaphor is that the simile is simply claiming an object/person/thing is similar to something else, not that it IS that thing.

Pathetic fallacy – this one is really useful. When the surroundings seem to agree with the emotions of a scene/character. So for instance if something turbulent happened in a novel and then there was a thunderstorm. Or if a character was frustrated and wandered into a field of prickly thorn bushes. This happens a lot in literature, so watch out for it.


Repetition – An easy device to identify


Personification – giving features of a person to something which isn’t a person. A thoughtful owl, a serene tree, an angry river, “the wind shouted”… aka non-human things either having the qualities of people or the actions of people.


Imagery – how does the author’s descriptions add to our understanding of the story?


Diction- how does the author’s word choice reflect the TONE


Tone–what general feeling does the author achieve?


Being concise

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Clarity is important in good writing. Rather than trying to increase the length of your paper the night before it is due by pumping sentences full of words, please make them as concise as possible. Being concise does not mean being short, it means being as brief as possible given the length of the thought.

A few rules of being concise are:

  1. Do not waste the main elements of a sentence

  2. The main elements of a sentence are subject, verb and object. These should convey the thought.

Ex:          The fact of the war had the effect of causing many changes.

Revised:   The war caused many changes.

The quickest way to make a sentence more concise is to look for passive language (is are and to be verbs).

Ex:          This is the man who witnessed the accident.

This man witnessed the accident.

  1. 2.   Express modifiers in the fewest possible words

Wordy:     He acted in an unnatural way

Revised:      He acted unnaturally.

                      The organization of small business can be described in a brief statement.

The organization of a small business can be briefly described.

She prefers wines having a French origin She prefers French wines.

3.      Do not state what the sentence structure itself makes clear.

  1. Use a colon or dash for announcement.

Ex:          There were many reasons for the civil war which include slavery, economic expansion, states’ rights,                                               cultural differences and sectional jealousies.

Better:   There were many reasons for the civil war: slavery, economic expansion, states’ rights, cultural                                                  differences and sectional jealousies

Ex:          Pitchers are divided into two classes. These two classes are starters and relievers.

Better:   Pitchers are divide into two class—starters and relievers,

Use ellipses. Ellipses are the omission of words implied by the grammar. The writer assumes the reader can                    supply the missing words from the grammar.

Ex:                      He is taller than his brother is.

Better:             He is taller than his brother.

Ex:                         When you are late, you must sign yourself in.

Better:   When late, you must sign yourself in.

  1. Use parallelism. (See above)


First, the effectiveness of emphasis depends on it being used sparingly.

Way to achieve emphasis


An announcement is a preliminary statement that tells the reader, “Watch out, here comes something important.”

Announcing is accomplished by setting up an anticipatory construction (Finally, Therefore, in fact) and setting it apart by a comma or a dash.

Finally, the last point about the man: he was trouble.

It’s tragic—this inability of human being to understand each other.

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