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CAE/CPE Writing

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Tim Warre

on 16 November 2014

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Transcript of CAE/CPE Writing

CAE/CPE Writing
General Advice
In the CAE/CPE writing paper you are required to complete 2 writing tasks in 90 minutes. This obviously means spending 45 minutes on each piece.
For each task you should divide your time like this:
15 minutes of planning.
30 minutes writing.
Underline content points
Step 3: Feed in ideas to paragraphs in note form.
CAE/CPE Writing Part 2
We're gonna start with part 2 because between the two exams they have the most in common.
6 Step Method
Dos and don'ts
Plan your composition carefully.
You're not writing poetry or a beautiful novel you're completing an assessment.
Read the question carefully.
Underline the key points that you have to answer; if you don't answer the question completely you will lose A LOT of marks, even if your composition is beautifully written.
Leave a line between each line of text.

This isn't just to make it easier for your teacher to mark, it also makes it easier for you to edit and change parts.
Use the same language that is used in the task.
You are being evaluated on the richness of your vocabulary and grammar and your ability to paraphrase.
Do a rough copy and a nice copy.
This is a massive waste of time, if you plan your piece well you shouldn't have to do this. The examiners don't care if it looks messy as long as it's legible.
Complete 1 task from a choice of 3. Tasks could include:
a report, a proposal, a letter or a review
Word limit:
220-260 words
Complete 1 task from a choice of 3. Tasks could include:
an article, a report, a review, a letter
or two questions related to set texts.
Word limit:
280-320 words.
1. Read and underline content points.
(the parts of the question you must answer)
Step 2: Organise underlined content points into 4/5 paragraphs.
Step 3: WHAT are you going to say?
Step 4: HOW: How are you gonna say that?
Range of structures:
What impressive grammar are you going to use?
(not only/no sooner/not until/seldom)
Inverted conditionals
(Were I to..../Had they known...)
Cleft sentences
(What impressed me most was...)
Participle clauses
(Having visited the city before, I know what to expect. Being a massive fan of cheese, I had a whale of a time in France)
Double comparatives
(The more cheese I ate, the fatter I became. The more I studied the more I understood about French culture.)
Range of vocabulary:
How to paraphrase the content points.
Phrasal verbs.
(switch over, zone out, sit back)
(like watching paint dry/to be on the edge of one's seat)
Relevant vocabulary to the topic
(chat show, current affairs, couch potato, remote control)
Other expressions
(Something for everyone, a smorgasbord of options, kill time, etc.)
How: How are you gonna say that?
Step 5: Forms and Conventions
Does the type of piece you're writing have any specific conventions?

Formal Letters:
Dear Sir/Madam/Editor (don't know name) ---> yours faithfully
Dear Mr Smith (Do know name) ---> yours sincerely

Paragraph titles: Introduction/Strengths/Weaknesses/Conclusion
Fixed introduction: The aim of this report/proposal is to....
Objective/impersonal style: ..... is considered to be.... There is widespread agreement that.... The idea of ....ing ..... was met with firm approval.
Step 6: Write!!!
The other 5 steps should take 15 minutes to complete, now you have 30 minutes to complete the task. Remember to:
Leave a line between each line of text for easy editing + adding.
Reread the piece once you've finished to look for: repetition, spelling mistakes, boring vocabulary (good/bad/interesting/boring/amazing/awesome/enjoy etc.)
Have a check list of impressive grammar and vocabulary, do you have: an inversion? A cleft sentence? a double comparative? An inverted conditional? a participle clause? A couple of well chosen phrasal verbs? An idiom or two? a selection of linkers? (despite, nevertheless etc.)
Recap, what were the 6 steps?
1. Read task, underline content points
2. Organise content points into paragraphs
3. WHAT are you going to say? Add ideas in note form.
4. HOW are you going to say it? fancy grammar + vocab
5. Forms and conventions: Paragraph titles etc.
6. Write!!!
Add ideas to plan, in note form.
The one, the only BBC1

do I
find the time these days
to zone out
in front of the
goggle box
. However, on those rare occasions when I do,
I like nothing more than to tune
into BBC 1, the British Broadcasting Corporation’s

Were I to sum up
the output of BBC1 in one word, it would be variety. It offers
a smorgasbord
of viewing options ranging from
nail-biting dramas
like Casualty to
side-splitting comedies
like Little Britain as well as
up-to-the minute current affairs shows
such as Newsnight. Plenty to keep the average

By and large,
the quality of programming is extremely high with
top-notch shows
like Doctor Who and Eastenders regularly
picking up awards
at home and
on the world stage.


being a state funded channe
l with no advertising revenues, some of the daytime shows can be a bit
. One example is the game show The Weakest Link, which really
lives up to its name

What really stands out about BBC 1 is
the fact that it
caters for
a wide demographic.
There really
is something for everyone
; from cartoons for the
to regular
news bulletins
and quality drama for adults. Not forgetting gentle daytime programming for the elderly and special services for the blind or
hard of hearing
, it
covers all bases.

There are times when BBC 1 can
come out second best
when compared with other networks.
The more
HBO shows I watch,
the shabbier
some BBC shows look. This is mainly
down to
the superior production values of shows from our friends
across the pond,
in terms of
scripting and original ideas the BBC
holds up pretty well in comparison.

In my humble opinion,
I’d say that BBC 1
sets quite a high benchmark
for state funded TV channels
the world over
; I challenge you to find a better one.
317 Words
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