General trends of the public exam 1. A WIDE variety of topics are used in the official exam. 4
2014 Paper 2 Writing Q4 Some people believe that filming movies in the city center should not be allowed. Others support it. Write a letter to the editor of the Hong Kong Daily giving your opinion. Provide three reasons to support your point of view.
Dear Editor, I am writing to refer to Mary Wong’s article “filming movies in city center: a nuisance”. In her article, she stated that the action does more harm than good since it exacerbated traffic jam in the city. However, I am writing this letter to give a more holistic view of the issue and let the readers have a get a better understanding of the issue.
In her article, Mary started with her own experience in Tsim Sha Tsui. She was wandering along the Avenue of Stars where she was blocked by a flock of tourists since the filming of a movie was taking place. She was irritated and filed a complaint to the authority, claiming that the tourist spot should be reserved to tourists. Therefore, she is against filming movie in city center. However, I believe that if we examine the issue more closely, we may draw a different conclusion.
Recap of 2014 exam 2. Communication of ideas is more important than grammatical accuracy. Less emphasis is placed on grammatical accuracy compared to the old syllabus. ▪ No more MC cloze or proofreading On the reading paper, for long questions, no marks will be deducted if a minor grammatical error is made. You can be given a high score if your grammatical errors do not hamper effective communication. 8
07/17/12 When can I copy directly from the text? When you see the words “According to paragraph x,”. For other questions, you have to use your own words.
2014 HKDSE “Hello, Winston. Isn’t this the strangest bot? It just shows up one day and … well, anyway.” Karl licked his lips. “Nine years ago, you applied to Future Industries. I didn’t want a hotshot like you competing with me, so I spread the rumor that you were impossible to work with. I’ve felt bad ever since and I’d like to apologize for doing that. I’m really sorry. I hope you can forgive me.” The screen rolled back into the robot. Winston jumped up. “That Scoundrel!!!” “Winston!”
11.What is Winston’s first reaction on hearing Karl’s apology? A.Sadness B.Anger C.Fear D.Pity 12. i) Who says “Winston!”? His wife ii) Why? ________________________________________________
Recap of 2014 exam Some problems encountered by students Problem 1: Not enough time to complete the reading and listening papers Solutions: Do sufficient practice. Time yourself. Decide before the date of the exam whether to opt for Section B1 (easier) or B2 (more difficult). 12
Recap of 2014 exam Problem 2: Insufficient vocabulary to expand ideas Solutions: Start memorizing phrases instead of single words e.g. happy = 13
Recap of 2014 exam Problem 3: Mediocre / insufficient ideas, failing to impress markers Solution: Make up own stories to impress your markers, especially for writing and speaking (individual response) E.g. Many people suffer from depression in Hong Kong. Take my best friend Amy as an example. Around a year ago, she could not help crying in class. Because of the stigma of mood disorder, she first refused to take drugs… 14
Hot tips for exam Teenage issue: Many teens lack knowledge about sex and perform badly in quizzes related to this topic. 18
Hot tips for exam Teenage issue: Sufficient sex education? Important sentences to remember: ▪ In Hong Kong, children’s eyes and ears are shielded by their doting parents whenever they hear anything relating to the notorious three-letter taboo word - sex. ▪ Teachers and parents are too shy and embarrassed to provide adequate sex education, leaving kids in the dark at a critical developmental stage in their lives. 19
Hot tips for 2015 exam Social issue: The wealth gap is widening. 20
Hot tips for 2015 exam Social issue: Wealth gap Important sentences to remember: 21 ▪ Despite Hong Kong’s reputation as a city of skyscrapers, luxury cars and swanky malls, around a tenth of families in the city live in relative poverty. ▪ There is a tide of public resentment 市民不滿 over a spate of scandals 醜聞 about collusion between the government and large businesses 官商勾結.
Hot tips for exam Cultural issue: Notorious Chinese tourists 22
Hot tips for exam Cultural issue: Notorious Chinese tourists As the number of Chinese tourists has soared to a world- leading 83 million last year, so has their reputation for rudeness and objectionable 會引起反對的 behaviour. People who have contact with Chinese tourists report many other pieces of unseemly behaviour including not flushing toilets, ignoring no smoking signs, flouting 藐視 traffic laws, littering, elbowing 用手肘推開 their way to the front of lineups, and allowing children to urinate 小便 or defecate 大便 in public. 23
Hot tips for exam Technological issue: Is the Internet improving or hampering communication? 24
Hot tips for exam Technological issue: Internet and communication Important sentences to remember: ▪ Many people are drawn to the Internet because they can gain access to a vast amount of information through a simple connection. ▪ Since the explosion of the Internet, there has been a dramatic change in the lives of people all over the world, especially for those who need to work around the clock 24 小時工作 in front of computer screens. 26
28 Part 1 Reading 1. You must learn how to tackle questions requiring your own words. 2. Candidates are expected to use their own words, rather than copying indiscriminately from the text. 3. You should practise rephrasing and summarizing skills.
07/17/12  ‘And you are going—‘  ‘To Bombay.’  ‘Very good, sir. You know that a visa is useless, and that no passport is required?’  ‘I know it, sir,’ replied Phileas Fogg; ‘but I wish to prove, by your visa, that I came by Suez.’ Is an official document necessary to go to Bombay? Explain your answer. No. You know that a visa is useless, and that no passport is required? (don’t copy directly!) No. Neither a visa or a passport is necessary.
30 Part 2 Writing 1.Flaws in language writing prevents you from getting higher marks. 2. Recitation of generic sentences should help you score better marks. You just have to fit in your points into the generic sentences.
07/17/12 1.Inappropriate word choice × If your mouth skill is very good,
07/17/12 2. Run-on sentences ✗ I was shocked, the last time I saw him, he told me that he was finding a job.
33 General Sentence 1 In recent days, whether to legislate for … has become the talk of the town (= a hot topic).
07/17/12 Generic Sentence 2 Supporters are of the opinion (= think) that the legislation would …
07/17/12 In recent days, whether to legislate for regulating protesters has become the talk of the town. Supporters are of the opinion that the legislation would maintain the law and order of our society.
37 Part 3 Listening and Integrated Skills 1. For long tasks, you are advised to select only relevant information to achieve task purpose. You should never copy indiscriminately. 1. You should manipulate the source texts in accurate language and style for the target audience. Pay attention to change of pronouns, tenses and word form.
07/17/12 2012 Task 8 Survey on barriers on communication 2012 Task 9 Advice page on body language * Match the subheadings in the Data File.
42 Part 4 Speaking 1. You should listen actively. Try rephrasing what others have said and build on their forms. 2. If you can’t think of what to say, try to use recited generic sentences for you. 3. Try to avoid single-word answers.
07/17/12 ✗ Er … ✔ Well … I need some time to give it some thoughts. 唔 … 等我諗諗
07/17/12 ✗ I don’t understand. ✔ I am worried that we may not quite follow you. Could you speak more slowly? / Could you repeat what you have said? 我地跟唔到 … 你可唔可以講慢 D? / 你可唔可以講多次 ? 拉人落水
Summary: How to optimize your performance Focus on topical/issue related revision. Ideas and vocabulary should be linked. Do more practice and time yourself. (Please complete both B1 and B2 to determine your level) Start keeping a vocabulary log using the four domains, namely teenage, social, cultural and technological issues. 45