SY4 Exam Tips Objectives: Have some useful tips for doing well Know the layout and expectations of the exam paper.
Don’t get stressed get prepared!! • Exam is 2 hours • You MUST answer question 1 parts a) and b) • AND • One question on Social Inequality (parts a) and b) frm a choice of two questions.
Before the exam • Revise !!!!!!!! • Practice answering questions to time • Know beforehand how much time you should allocate to each question according to the marks available • Have the right equipment ready • Eat and sleep well • Take time-out to relax • Remember that some adrenaline when going into the exam will help you perform better! BUT talk to someone in school or at home if you get too stressed.
During the Exam • Read the instructions on the paper thoroughly • Regularly check the time • Plan your longer answers – but don’t spend too long on this! • Check your answers by reading back over them • Keep your handwriting legible • Clearly mark on your answer booklet which question you are answering
Research Methods Compulsory question • Question a) 10 marks – 10 minutes • AO1 10 marks (All knowledge based) • You will be given an example of some research on a topic and could be asked about why the researcher has chosen a particular method, sampling methods, ethics or even theoretical things like advantages/disadvantages of positivism/interpretivist. You need to know advantages and disadvantages of all the methods in the textbook and how to evaluate each method in terms of GROVER (generalisability, representativeness, operationalisation, validity, ethics and reliability). Your answers must be in the context of the source material given. You could also use other examples of research you know about (see SY4 research summaries handout.)
Question b) 30 marks – 40 minutes • AO1 14 AO2 16 • You will be asked to outline a research design on a topic which will be given to you. It will also state whether the study should be qualitative or quantitative. You will then have to discuss any problems which may occur with your design. You should design a study which is fitting for the topic given to you. So don’t try to write one you have pre-prepared, just practice doing them. You need to cover the sub-headings below in your design. • To get AO2 marks you must justify each stage saying why you made the decision and giving some strengths and weaknesses of your design e.g the method or sampling technique used. The evaluation section will be particularly important for getting AO2.
The research design • Aim, a statement about what your overall aim is • Hyposthesis (If quantitative) a prediction about what you think will be found • Operationalisation (how are you measuring/defining the concept e.g class inequalities) • Sampling method (how will you get access to your participants and select them?) • Method used (primary or secondary data collection and actual method) • Procedure used, how you would actually carry it out • Analysis of the data, how would you analyse it and what you might expect to find. • Evaluation. A couple of paragraphs explaining any problems you might anticipate with data collection e.g time, cost, access to sample, and problems with the design itself in terms of GROVER, see above. • A way to remember order of above list:- • A Hippo Only Smells Monkeys Properly After Eating.
Question 2 Social Inequality These could be any question based around the 10 booklet topics that we have covered. Synopticity is being examined in this unit so a question may also be broader requiring you to bring aspects of topics together or draw on previous knowledge in sociology. You should know:- • Key terms linked to each topic • key points/patterns e.g on gender, ethnicity etc, names of writers, linked research studies, linked theories /perspectives and have strengths and weaknesses prepared. • You need to pay attention to command words (see handbook) • Use activities, key words and essay plans at back of booklets.
Question 4/5 a) 20 marks – 25 minutes • AO1 8 AO2 12 • This will be the ‘identify two areas of inequality’ question. • You should aim to identify each area, explain it with examples, provides at least two pieces of evidence for each area which is fully explained, developed and evaluated using strengths and weaknesses or alternative viewpoint/perspective. You can also use research from the summaries and evaluate the methods used. • Mark scheme states ‘range of evidence’ for AO1 • Mark scheme states ‘explicit links to question’ and analysis must be the focus. I.e demonstrating an understanding of the issues and what evidence implies/suggests about it.
Question 4/5 b) 30 marks – 45 minutes • AO1 13 AO2 17 • This is a longer essay and is examining your skills of evaluation and analysis more , you need range AND depth. • You can jot a quick plan if you have time • Include an introduction and conclusion • This question will ask you to Discuss, assess or critically evaluate etc. The essay should be set out as an argument. • Use evaluative language at every opportunity and make VERY explicit links to the question in your answer. • You need to include a range of writers, research and theories in your answer. • Each point you make should be fully explained, developed, provide evidence which is then evaluated and analysed. • Use PEEA !!!
Extra Tips ! • The key to doing well in exams is all about revision and practice. Half the battle is writing good essays to time. • Watch the news and apply your knowledge to current debates. This will help you understand the issues and consolidate your knowledge. Anything current you can include in your answers will get extra marks but don’t overdo it, remember you need actual research studies writers and theories too ! • GOOD LUCK !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!