How to Ace Eng.lish Paper 2 – Part 2

27 March 2018

Last month I shared the standard questions that are found in the Paper 2 Visual Text.  This month, I would like to continue with the final component, which is the standard questions for comprehension.

1. Literary Device

There are plenty of literary devices.  Students are generally only required to identify the 3 common ones in the exams:

  • Personification
    • Something that adds a human characteristic to inanimate objects
    Eg. The abandoned house has blank staring windows
  • SimileEg. The survivor was bobbing like a cork in the open sea
  • MetaphorEg. We are nothing but cogs in the huge economic machine…

2. Using your Own Words

To paraphrase an answer using your own words, you simply change the verbsadjectivesadverbs and possibly nouns in the sentence or phrase.  In short, the word form.  All words typically have four word forms namely:

Noun                 example: beauty
Adjective          example: beautiful
Verb                  example: beautify
Adverb               example: beautifully

For example to paraphrase the sentence below:
‘The camera is able to locate exactly the whereabouts of the endangered species’.
The camera is capable to clearly identify the position of the threatened species.

3. Irony

To explain something that is ironic, all you need is to show an outcome or situation contradicts what we expect.  For example:
Tigers are endangered species, and they are poached aggressively…
What is ironic about the above?

Since tigers are becoming extinct, we should protect them, instead, we kill them in great numbers.

4. Unusual and Effective

In order to show why something is unusual, simply compare it with logic or reality.  And being effective refers to emphasis; that is, what it is trying to emphasise.  For example:

“When Andy entered the dank cave, he was greeted with a sickly sweet smell of rotting flesh.
What is unusual and effective about the underlined phrase?

It is unusual as rotting flesh should not smell sweet, which is pleasant.  The phrase is effective as the combination of sickly and sweet in the smell emphasises how repulsive it is.

5. Language use Question

This type of question requires students to firstly identify the phrase that explains something (be careful of excess denied!!)  After identifying the phrase, explain what it means in your own words.  For example:

– Explain how the language used shows danger in the expedition.

First, identify the phrase
“rewards a false step with whatever comes after life”

Then, explain what the phrase means
“rewards a false step with whatever comes after life” shows that any wrong move in the expedition will result in death

With all the valuable tips I have shared so far in Paper 2, I hope it provides some insights and confidence in tackling your Visual Text and Comprehension henceforth.  Good luck!