07 February 2011

Delta Results

Just an update to say I actually passed the exam surprisingly! Even better, I passed with merit! How that happened I don't know but maybe all that writing in Paper 2 actually paid off.

Some advice?
I haven't thought much about the exam since I did it but from what I remember, I knew something about almost everything I saw in Paper 1. The problem was time.

I started with questions 1 and 2 as warmers. I think I got most of the terms right or mostly right because I'd seen them in various practice tests (this is where IH really comes up tops!!!). Then, I went straight to question 4 because this carries the most points in Paper 1. In my paper, question 4 was long. I found myself clock watching and just writing one or two things for each part before moving on to the next part because there just wasn't enough time to give full answers. I didn't have time to finish all the parts before moving on to question 5

Question 5 was pretty straight forward (carrying the second highest marks in the paper), but I was already over time so rushed through that before whizzing over to Question 3 which was, for me, the easiest. Strangely, it was about identifying the characteristics of an anecdote. Strange because the night before I'd thought about different genres and realized I hadn't really considered an anecdote so had spent time thinking about characteristics of this genre just before the exam. I couldn't believe it when I saw question 3!

I remember feeling really disappointed after Paper 1 and thinking I really hadn't done very well. It was rushed, I didn't have time to think, to finish my sentences and I couldn't write any faster than I was. My hands were aching and I started to think about resitting the exam in June.

I was dreading Paper 2, especially after thinking so badly about Paper 1, because I still wasn't confident with all the theory in English language teaching. During the course I hadn't done very well on Paper 2 questions because, being more practical than academic, I was struggling with all the methodologies and theories and found it difficult to relate to life in the classroom.

After the half hour break, and a coffee, the exam started. I decided to start the paper with question 4 because it carried the most points. Straightaway I met a term that I hadn't heard of. I knew that this question usually requires you to pull together knowledge from all different areas of language learning and teaching and some of the answers I'd seen to previous past papers sometimes seemed bizarre and way out of the box. I started writing about things I remembered from the course and my reading, but at the same time trying to think "out of the box". I wrote anything that came into my head related to the question, or vaguely related to the question. 3 pages of writing later, and 40 minutes, I stopped writing and moved on to the next question. I remember feeling pleased that I'd written so much because in practice exams I'd never been able to think of anything to write!

I went on to questions 2 and 3 because of all the Paper 2 questions I'd completed, I'd done best with these questions, although not great, in practice tests. I relied largely on memory and exam practice tests for this and stuck to the proscribed answers as far as possible.

Finally, I turned to question 1 of Paper 2 (assessment), which even now I know little or nothing about. I had 15 minutes left by this time, and again, relied on memory of course materials and a bit of luck!

So, I'm pleased I don't have to go through all of that again in June!

What do you remember about your Delta exam?