Analysis in Level 2 essays

The greatest barrier to achievement at Level 2 remains the depth of analysis required. Simplistic analysis  such as “if the writer did not use these techniques the film wouldn’t be as effective”, “if the ending was different, it wouldn’t be the same story”, “the beginning helped to start the story” and “the ending helped to close everything off” isn’t enough. These sort of simplistic comments do not meet the requirements of a level 2 standard. When writing an essay at Level 2 you need to analyse how particular elements contributed to the texts you studied as a whole, and how and why particular effects were created. You need to move away from summarising, describing, or just explaining what happened in your texts.

The primary purpose of an essay on a literary text is to provide an interpretation of that text. In so doing, an essay needs to move beyond a description of characters and events to an analysis of the different elements of the text.

This analysis should bear in mind that the world that is presented in the text may well be fundamentally different from the world in which you live. Therefore, in analysing the characters and events of a text, you will need to take an “imaginative leap” into the moral and social framework of that text, imagining how such characters and events would be judged from within that framework. Have a look at the extended text assessment schedule from 2007 to understand what you must do:

Achievement

Achievement with Merit

Achievement with Excellence

Some specific evidence / details linked to text.

Covers the topic but without perception or insight.

Evidence of analysis: shows engagement with the text at a reader level, and discusses various elements of the text with supporting reference and some detail.

Covers the topic fully and with detail from the text.

Quotation and detail are used to reinforce points.

Uses appropriate terminology with accuracy and fluency.

Shows appreciation of and some insight into theme and / or structure, author’s craft and purpose, as well as the specifics of the topic.

Presents some inferences based on personal understanding.

Some maturity of thinking and expression.

Presents convincing analysis that offers conclusions and draws inferences about the author’s purpose and reader’s positioning, and possibly goes beyond the text in doing this.

As for Achievement with Merit, plus

Presents insightful analysis.

Offers conclusions and draws inferences about the author’s purpose.

Presents own position as a reader of the text.

Clearly able to analyse author’s craft / ideas.

Shows integrated insight and, if appropriate, reference beyond the text.

‘No Achievement’ aspects may include:

  • rote-learned responses
  • disproportionate plot summary
  • lacks sufficient reference to text details / specifics
  • insufficiently linked to the topic
  • does not adequately address the topic
  • short (less than 250 words)
  • simplistic.

Judgement Statement

Achievement

Achievement with Merit

Achievement with Excellence

Analyse specified aspect(s) of extended written text(s), using supporting evidence. Analyse specified aspect(s) of extended written text(s) convincingly, using supporting evidence. Analyse specified aspect(s) of extended written text(s) convincingly and with insight, using supporting evidence.

A

M

E

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