Skills tested

Transactional Writing

The task is to write a 100 - 120 word transactional formal or semi-formal letter or email using the information provided

writing in the genre of a semi-formal or formal transactional letter

Discursive Writing

The task is to write a 150-word text within the genre specified (topic is from a choice of 3)

writing in any of the following genres: discursive essay, article, report, non-transactional letter


Preparing Students for the Writing Test

Candidates should be aware of the two genres required in the Writing Test: email and postcards. Preparation should involve analysis of the structure, paragraphs and vocabulary of the genres.

In marking it would be helpful to students if the teacher used a marking scheme similar to that used in the exam. The language used is of course important, but students’ attention should be drawn to the importance of understanding the rubric, and of including all of the information requested. It is not unusual that a good piece of writing loses valuable points simply because it does not fully or directly answer the rubric. It is also important to arrange the ideas into a logical order, to divide the piece of writing into well-organised paragraphs, to use appropriate cohesive devices, and to choose the relevant range and register.