Don’t shy away from essay questions – they’re really easy to cope withFriday, August 21st, 2009
If there was one thing that my son kept running away from in his English class, it was the section that dealt with essay questions. This particular part of the question paper seems to be the nightmare of every child. Over the past decade or so, I have watched children sail through the multiple choice questions as easy as winking. However, when they are faced with the essays that they have to write, they quiver in their shoes. This is because these questions demand a huge amount of concentration on the one hand and also a clear writing skill that will be able to convince the reader that he or she knows what they are talking about.
Since we are talking about essay questions here, it is relevant to talk about the different kinds of essays that a person can be asked to write. For instance, if you are talking to an eighth or tenth grader, the level of questions that can be asked might include something like this:
· Write an essay on your trip to the wildlife sanctuary that you went on last Saturday with your friends.
· Describe in detail the things that you and your friends did on your 10 day camp at the foothills of the Himalayas.
· What do you think about football that is being played today in your country. Do you think that it needs more encouragement from the government? If so, give your suggestions.
The level of the essay questions asked will surely vary and go to the next level if you were testing the essay writing skills of a person who is doing a college degree. Just think of the person who is going to work on Sociology, Psychology and Journalism – a triple major course that will enable him to be a Bachelor of Arts in three major disciplines. To begin with, he would have to be taught how to write an essay, how to collect and collate the points that he has to make and then make necessary assessments and evaluations. .
Let us imagine that he has to do a research paper on abortion. This is such a burning issue, one that could make or break a government. It is necessary to be able to collect a lot of statistics on the issue and present it in a coherent way that will bring him the necessary marks. So an abortion research paper is one wherein a student could showcase his skills in answering the essay questions that are posed to him on the topic of abortion.
Global warming is yet another burning issue or a popular topic that is the subject of many essay questions. Everybody seems to be worried about what is happening to the world and there are a larger number of people who keep talking about what they could do to change the trend of global warming. Therefore the global warming essay could focus on one or more aspects of global warming, citing relevant examples.