Answering History Qns


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Answering History Qns

  1. 1. What is a source-based comparison question? The comparison question can come in a number of different forms: 1) How different are Source A and Source B? 2) How similar are Source A and Source B? This is what you need in order to answer the question: L3/4 - One similarity AND One Difference in source content Remember, you need to have a point of comparison between the two sources. When you compare anything from cars to footballers, you always compare them on the basis of a number of items, e.g: In terms of the clubs that the footballers play for: Wayne Rooney and Michael Owen are different in terms of the clubs they play for. Wayne Rooney plays for Manchester United, whilst Michael Owen plays for Newcastle United. In terms of the position: Wayne Rooney and Michael Owen are similar in terms of their onfield positions. Wayne Rooney and Michael Owen are both forwards. When you apply this to a SBQ, a point of comparison looks something like this: The two sources are similar in as they both highlight the achievements of the Malacca Sultanate. [Point of Comparison] Source A states that "The Malacca Sultanate was a period of cultural and religious achievement" and Source B states that "The Malacca Sultanate was the largest empire in maritime Southeast Asia". [Evidence] Thus both sources clearly demonstrate the considerable achievements of the Malacca Sultanate. Find one similarity and one difference and write them down in separate paragraphs. L4/5 - Similarity/Difference in Tone Tone refers to the manner in which a source is written. Sometimes sources can sound the same, at others, sources can sound very different. When you look out for tone, look for things such as exaggerations and emotive words which will give you clues about how a source is written. The two sources are different in terms of tone. Source A is written in a harsh and critical manner when it states that "Qin Shihuang ruled without any regard for his people", whereas Source B is written in an adulatory manner as it sates "Qin Shihuang makes clear the Way for the people". L5/6 - Similarity/Difference in Purpose We've already come across purpose in the 'why' question. So you would know what purpose is all about. Sources can have similar and different purposes. So you can compare sources based on their purpose as well. The two sources are different in terms of purpose. Source A was written with the purpose of criticizing Qin Shihuang whereas Source B was written in order to convice people to support Qin Shihuang. This can be supported by Source A which states "...." and Source B which states "..." So now you have an idea about comparison questions, to get the top marks, you need 4 paragraphs in total, one on similarity in terms of content, one on difference in terms of content, one similarity/difference in terms of tone and one similarity/difference in terms of purpose.
  2. 2. What is a structured essay question? A structured essay question seeks for a structured answer from students regarding the topic that they have been taught. It is called “structured” because students are expected to “structure” arguments to answer questions with the information that they have learnt. This means that SEQ does not merely test on your memory but your ability to formulate arguments based on what you know. Structured Essay Question Breakdown (a) Why did…. (b) How did … (c) To what extent/ Do you agree… For your SA, you will be expected to do two SEQs (two sets of a, b and c). You should not take more than half an hour for each set of question. Each question will be based on one chapter. Structured Essay Question Answering Format The guide below serves as a template for answering your SEQs. For the “Why did” and “How did” types of question you can use the following format. P- Point (Your argument) E- Evidence (Historical evidence to support your argument) E- Elaboration (Show how is the evidence related to the point) P/ L- Point/ Link (Show how point answers the topic in question) PEEP or PEEL twice to get the highest marks. Start a new Paragraph when you PEEP or PEEL the second time. Do it a third time only if time permits (just in case one of your points is incorrect). For the “To what extent/ Do you agree” type of question, you can use the following format (it is almost the same as the previous type): Agree/ Disagree P- Point (Your argument) E- Evidence (Historical evidence to support your argument) E- Elaboration (Show how is the evidence related to the point) P/ L- Point/ Link (Show how point agrees or disagrees with the statement in the question) If your overall stand is that you agree with the statement, then you should have two points that agree and one point that disagrees. The opposite happens if you disagree with the statement overall. So how many paragraphs do we have so far? 3. The last paragraph (only if time permits) is meant for conclusion. Conclude by saying what is your overall stand and why? Do not do a numerical comparison of both sides (i.e. there are more points that agree than disagree, so I agree on a whole) instead try to explain why one point supports the statement so strongly that you agree with the statement (emphasise why this factor is so important than your counter argument just frail in comparison, do not repeat what you have said earlier though). Alternatively, you can play down your counter arguments (explain why that factor is not so important).
  3. 3. Common mistakes and Tips •Read the question and underline/highlight the topic in question. What is this question asking you? Make sure all the arguments/ points that you have formulated ATQ (Answer the question). •Plan your answers. After finding out the topic in question, quickly scribble a few points that answer the question on the question paper. For example, if the question is “Why was QSH not a well liked ruler”, you may scribble words like “Ruthless/Harsh punishment” and “Strict and dislike freedom” next to the question. You will find it easier to write out the answers and also this prevents an overlapping of answers. •Do not narrate. Make your point/argument short and sharp. When giving evidence, mention those things that are relevant only. Do not attempt to vomit out everything that you have remembered. (You are only wasting your own time.) •Paragraph your answers. I cannot emphasise more on this. Make sure every point starts with a new paragraph. This would make your essay clearer both for yourself when you check and for the marker when he grades your essay. •Plan SEQs (Section C) first. Some of you may feel more comfortable to do the SEQs first before doing the other sections because SEQ involves more memory than the other sections of the paper. What you could do perhaps is to plan out the questions (5mins for both sets of SEQs) and then go back and start the paper with Section A.
  4. 4. ] Example 1. Government and Society [15m] a. How did Parameswara establish the foundation for Malacca to become a great trading port? [4m] b. What was the impact of cultural adaptation on Southeast Asian civilisations? [4m] c. Do you agree that Qin Shihuang's reign was bad for the people of China? [7m] Now we shall introduce to you the steps to answer such questions: Steps: 1. Read the essay question carefully. 2. What are the key words in the question? (This gets students to think about what they need answer.) 3. What are the key issues in the essay title? (This gets the students to focus on the content of the essay as well as historical issues.) 4. What is your opinion on the matter? (Do not start writing until you know what you want to say?) 5. Opening points to be made in each paragraph (This is very difficult but crucial. This should provide the skeleton of the essay and show the students how the entire essay is constructed. It helps in the planning!) Remember this: Point > Explanation, Example > Link back to the essay PEEL Each paragraph should always consist of a point, which is elaborated by explanation and examples. Then the point has to be linked back to the question. VERY IMPORTANT! Note: 1. Always answer the question right from the beginning by stating your point of view!!! E.g. I agree Qin Shihuang's rule was bad for China.... 2. Always write in small paragraphs. 3. Keep one point to one paragraph. 4. Each paragraph must be elaborated with examples and explanation. 5. Always link back to the question either at the beginning or end of each paragraph!!! 6. If time permits, always write a well-thought conclusion at the end of the essay. If time is limited, at least answer to the question one more time so that you will not go out of point. 7. Always time yourself.
  5. 5. 8. Look at the mark allocation and answer the question accordingly. For a 4 mark question, 2 points with relevant explanation and examples would be sufficient. For people who want to play safe, 3 points. Remember 4 marks doesn’t mean 4 points without explanation nor examples. 9. Always present the two sides of an argument. You may agree with the statement but you must also write about counter arguments. Always two sides [given factor and additional factors]!!! 10. As far as possible you should never contradict yourself by saying you agree and then disagree later in your essay (when it comes to a 7 mark question). Instead, in your introduction, after you have stated your stand (or point of view), you should stick with the same stand in the conclusion. This is only logical and prevents you from contradicting yourself. Learn to defend your argument!!! 11. Use conjuction to link your essay so that there is a good flow. e.g. firstly, secondly, thirdly, in addition, moreover, furthermore, nevertheless, but, however, in contrast, on the contrary, despite, etc.
  6. 6. 1. How did Parameswara establish the foundation for Malacca to become a great trading port? [4m] ? Point Firstly Parameswara was able to recognise the potential for Malacca to become a great trading port. Explanation and Example Parameswara noticed Malacca had a safe harbour and was located along the Straits of Malacca which was part of the India-China trade route. As such, its location made it an ideal centre for the distribution and collection of goods brought from other parts of Southeast Asia and other countries. Link Thus Parameswara and his followers decided to settle in Malacca and recognised the potential for Malacca to become a great trading port. Point Secondly, Parameswara was able to take steps to make Malacca an attractive port for traders. Explanation and Example Parameswara formed a friendship with China in order to protect Malacca from its enemies and thus made Malacca a safe port. In addition, he also appointed syahbandars to look after the needs of the foreign traders who stopped in Malacca. Later, he married a Muslim princess from Pasai in Northern Sumatra and coverted to Islam, this attracted many Indian-Mulsim and Arab traders to setup their trading headquarters in Malacca. Link Thus by taking these steps, Parameswara was able to lay the foundations for Malacca to become a great trading port.
  7. 7. 2. Do you agree that Qin Shihuang's reign was bad for the people of China? [An L4 answer] I agree that Qin Shihuang's reign was bad for the people of China. [Agrees] Qin Shihuang's reign was bad for China as the reign was infamous for its cruelty. There were many strict laws which were used against the people of China. For example, those who broke the law were executed along with their families. In addition, Qin Shihuang also executed many scholars and burnt books that went against the state philosophy of legalism. Thus by these acts, he brought tremendous cruelty, hardship and destruction upon the people of China. [Disagrees] On the other hand, Qin Shihuang was able to unify China by bringing China under the control of a single central rule by eradicating the power of the feudal Shi and removing their powers. He was able to put in place a civilian and military governor in each province who took charge of all matters. These officials were watched over by an inspector, and all officials reported to him directly. In addition, Qin Shihuang was alboe to introduce laws and uniformed weights, script and measures to China and created a sense of unity in China. Thus Qin Shihuang's rule had a lasting impact on China as these changes were used in subsequent dynasties. [Conclusion] In conclusion, whilst Qin Shihuang's reign did have a lasting impact on the people of China, the inherent nature of its cruelty cannot be denied as the Qin Dynasty was brought to an end by a revolt by the people and its eventual replacement. Thus, the rule of the Qin Dynasty was bad for the people of China. * See, the conclusion still must agree with the introduction. It is very contradicting and confusing to say that you agree and then disagree later just because we have taught you to provide both sides of the argument.