You will read two examples of non-literary texts on a common theme. These could be an advert, a newspaper or magazine article, a page from the Internet or an essay (e.g. travel writing). You then answer questions on these texts. One question (usually the last one) will ask you to compare the texts.
Structure = how a text is organised or put together. You may well be asked to discuss how an argument is structured in the exam. You need to think carefully about WHY the writer chose to put particular details/information in the place/order they did.
What you write and the way you write it will depend on who the reader is. For a friend, your tone will be friendly, chatty and informal. For an employer , on the other hand, you will adapt a more serious and formal tone.
People write reports to give information , to advise their audience or to persuade a person or group of people. Reports are normally written after some research has been done and they give up-to-date information for other people to act on.
Reports need to be clear and straightforward so that points can be made clearly to the reader(s). There will be a main heading and probably subheadings. These sections should be clearly separated to clearly organise your work.
Always be polite – you are offering information, advice and trying to persuade! However, it is fine to offer a strong opinion or conclusion if it is based on the evidence you have presented in your report.
Don’t write ‘firstly’, ‘secondly’, ‘thirdly’, when setting out your points. Instead try to use words like ‘importantly’, ‘a crucial point is’ or ‘in addition to this’. It makes it more interesting for the examiner and makes you look like a more sophisticated writer!
Make it seem like you know what you are writing about. Make up information!
Audience: The style and tone of an article will depend on what it’s about and who it’s written for – a school newspaper will be different to Vogue. The exam question will ask you to write an article for the type of publication it is for.
Format: This is quite straightforward – the article needs a main heading that makes it clear what the article is about . The use of paragraphs is important (with subheadings ) for a new idea or point you want to make.
When you write a review, you need to think about: what age your audience is; which gender they are; how formal the language needs to be (‘The Radio Times’ might include more formal language than ‘The Sun’), and what your opinion is of what you are reviewing and why.