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114217 FCE Exam Report - Dec 09

Nov 08, 2014



First Certificate in EnglishExamination Report0101 Syllabus

December 2009

UCLES 2010 EMC/6534/0Y04

First Certificate in EnglishExamination Report December 2009 Syllabus 0101


Page Introduction Paper 1 Reading Paper 2 Writing Paper 3 Use of English Paper 4 Listening Paper 5 Speaking Feedback Form 1 3 7 13 17 23 30

UCLES 2010 0101

INTRODUCTION This report is intended to provide a general view of how candidates performed on each paper in the December 2009 session, and to offer guidance on the preparation of candidates. The overall pass rate for Syllabus 0101 was 59.28%. The following table gives details of the percentage of candidates at each grade. 0101 PERCENTAGE 5.25 12.83 41.20 10.08 30.64



Grading took place during January 2010 (approximately six weeks after the examination). The five FCE papers total 200 marks, after weighting. Papers 15 are each weighted to 40 marks. A candidates overall FCE grade is based on the total score gained by the candidate in all five papers. Candidates do not pass or fail in a particular paper, but rather in the examination as a whole. The overall grades (A, B, C, D and E) are set according to the following information: statistics on the candidature statistics on the overall candidate performance statistics on individual questions, for those parts of the examination for which this is appropriate (Papers 1, 3 and 4) the advice of the Principal Examiners, based on the performance of candidates, and on the recommendation of examiners where this is relevant (Papers 2 and 5) comparison with statistics from previous years examination performance and candidature.

Results are reported as three passing grades (A, B and C) and two failing grades (D and E). Every candidate is provided with a Statement of Results which includes a graphical display of the candidates performance in each component, shown against the scale Exceptional Good Borderline Weak. In addition, the Statement of Results includes a standardised score out of 100 (which is converted from the aggregate mark of 200). This score allows candidates to see exactly how they performed. It has set values for each grade, allowing comparison across sessions of the examination: Grade A = 80100 marks Grade B = 7579 marks Grade C = 6074 marks Grade D = 5559 marks Grade E = 54 marks or below. This means that the minimum score a candidate needs to achieve a passing grade will always be 60.

UCLES 2010 0101


Special Consideration

Special Consideration can be given to candidates affected by adverse circumstances immediately before or during an examination. Examples of acceptable reasons for giving Special Consideration include illness and bereavement. All applications for Special Consideration must be made through the local Centre as soon as possible after the examination affected.

Irregular Conduct

The cases of candidates who are suspected of copying, collusion or breaking the examination regulations in some other way will be considered by the Cambridge ESOL Malpractice Committee. Results may be withheld because further investigation is needed or because of infringement of the regulations.

Notification of Results

Candidates Statements of Results are issued through their local Centre approximately two months after the examination has been taken. Certificates are issued to candidates gaining a passing grade (A, B or C) about six weeks after the issue of Statements of Results. Requests for a check on results may be made through the local Centre, within one month of the issue of Statements of Results. Cambridge ESOL produces the following documents which may be of use in preparing candidates for FCE: Regulations (available online, for information on dates, etc.) FCE Handbook (for detailed information on the examination and sample materials) Examination Report (produced in conjunction with the release of certain Past Papers) Past Paper Pack (made available periodically, approximately 10 weeks after the relevant examination session, including question papers for Papers 14, sample Speaking test materials, answer keys, CD and tapescript for Paper 4, and Paper 2 mark schemes and sample scripts)

Users of this Examination Report may find it useful to refer simultaneously to the relevant Past Paper Pack. This, together with further copies of this report, is available from the Centre through which candidates entered, or can be purchased using the order form online at If you do not have access to the internet, you can obtain an order form from: Cambridge ESOL Information 1 Hills Road Cambridge CB1 2EU United Kingdom Tel: Fax: +44 1223 553355 +44 1223 553068 Email: Website: [email protected]

Feedback on this report is very welcome and should be sent to the Reports Co-ordinator, Cambridge ESOL, at the above address. Please use the feedback form at the end of this report. UCLES 2010 0101


PAPER 1 READING Part 1 Task Type and Focus Multiple choice Focus: detail, opinion, gist, attitude, tone, purpose, main idea, meaning from context, text organisation features (exemplification, comparison, reference) 2 Gapped text Focus: text structure, cohesion and coherence A text from which sentences have been removed and placed in jumbled order after the text. Candidates must decide from where in the text the sentences have been removed. A text or several short texts preceded by multiple-matching questions. Candidates must match prompts to elements in the text. 7 Format A text followed by four-option multiple-choice questions Number of Questions 8


Multiple matching Focus: specific information, detail, opinion and attitude



Candidates record their answers on a separate answer sheet, which is scanned by computer. Questions in Parts 1 and 2 carry two marks each. Questions in Part 3 carry one mark each.

Candidate Performance

In general, candidates coped reasonably well with the three task formats of the paper. Statistical evidence showed that the questions in all three parts provided a reliable assessment of candidates relative ability levels.

Part 1, Questions 18: A change of lifestyle Candidates coped well with this four-option multiple-choice task. It focused mainly on detailed comprehension but also included a lexical question, Question 3, and a reference question, Question 7. Candidates coped particularly well with Question 2. A large proportion of the candidates correctly selected option C, which states that when Clare was a child she enjoyed taking on responsibility. They realised that this matched the section of the text which explains that Clare remembers feeling really grown up the day that I was allowed to feed them (the pigs) on my own. Questions 4 and 7 proved to be more demanding. In Question 4, candidates had to decide how Clare felt at the end of her career as a trainer. A good proportion of the stronger candidates rightly selected option B (surprised at her colleagues reactions). In the third paragraph, Clare describes some of her fellow trainers and says when everyone knew I was leaving, I was quite taken aback by the number of people who said, Clare you cant go! However, some of the stronger candidates and a significant number of the weaker candidates UCLES 2010 0101


chose option A, which says she was upset by some peoples personal criticism. Clare admits that she had some battles with some of the new trainers, but this was before she decided to retire. The word upsetting appears earlier in the paragraph, but in the context of Clare not being afraid of upsetting other people, rather than being upset herself. Candidates should be warned of the dangers of choosing answers purely on the basis of matching a word in the option with one in the text. They need to read each option carefully and then check the meaning as a whole against what is stated in the text. In Question 7, candidates had to decide what the pronoun It referred to. Most of the stronger candidates correctly chose option A (dealing with the owners). However, a significant proportion of the weaker candidates selected option C (being successful in races). Clare mentions that her son has already had several winners. However, the next sentence begins with But, indicating a change of direction racehorse owners have high expectations. She goes on to say that keeping them happy is not an easy task and then adds, It is something you really have to work at. This indicates that the difficult issue introduced by the But is being further developed and thus the pronoun It refers to trying to keep the owners happy. It would be helpful to show candidates how to follow the way an idea is developed by means of pronouns and important linking words such as but, however and instead. Part 2, Questions 915: The Oriana Turnaround This gapped-sentence task, focusing on text structure, proved to be the most challenging on the paper. Weaker candidates had difficulty with Question 10 in particular. Most of the stronger candidates correctly selected option H. They linked the information in the text that the Orianas working practices are shaped by a rigid cruise schedule with It would take really extreme weather conditions to stop the ship departing and returning at the stated times in the option. Weaker candidates were fairly equally spread over the other options with the highest proportion choosing option F. This choice is rather difficult to understand as the option states a loud crash announces the departure of another empty metal container. It may be that candidates were tempted by the word departure, linking it with the rigid cruise schedule before the gap and the last passengers leaving the ship at the beginning of the next paragraph