Note: This article is for high school students from the state of Victoria, Australia.
The first step to succeeding in an exam is to know how you are going to be assessed (this also helps reduce stress on the big day!). Take advantage of the school holidays to get familiar with the French VCE assessment criteria so you can :
- prepare with the French VCE exam requirements in mind in the coming months
- shape your exam answers to what the examiners are expecting from you.
- focus on your strengths and work on the points that need improvement according to the assessment descriptors!
Where to Find the Information to Best Prepare your French VCE ?
The Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority website is a goldmine of information for you!
The VCAA is the website you need to refer to for all current information about the exam format and content.
Here is the absolute MUST-READ selection from the VCAA website:
1. French VCE Study Design
The French VCE Study design includes:
- the assessment outcomes and criteria for the 4 units
- the number of points allocated for each task / outcome, and how much it accounts for in your exam
- the list of the French grammar notions you are expected to know (pages 14 to 17)
- the list of text types you are expected to be familiar with and to produce (page 13)
- the main characteristics of the common text types, which you should reuse for your written exam (page 57)
- a selection of books, grammar resources, websites, periodicals, CDs, French movies and much more. (page 61 onward)
2. Assessment Handbook
The Assessment Handbook:
- Describes in detail the tasks you will be asked to perform and the skills you are expected to display for each exam part (school-assessed or final) and for each unit.
- Includes the assessment tables that actually show what mark range you can expect for meeting or not the descriptors, based on your performance.
3. Past Written Examination Papers and Examination Reports
This page presents the past exam papers (left-hand column) and examination reports (right-hand column) for the past 14 years, so you can definitely get a lot of practice and essential input!
Don’t skip the examination reports! They provide invaluable information and insight about where the examiners were disappointed or impressed. These reports will give you:
- The answers to the exam ; how the points were awarded, what answers elements needed to be included to get the point. This is precious information to study and understand how your copy will be assessed; what instructions the examiners received and what they were looking for!
- A list of the common errors typically made by the students of that year
- Tips on how the students could maximise their performance.
- Some examples of the best answers/sentences submitted by students in their written piece. Get inspiration there! See for yourself what made the examiners happy!
Note: I have written and published a French VCE revision guide, “How to Prepare for the French VCE and Reach your Maximum Score”, in which I’ve included my best tips, checklists and a lot more to help you! Check it out here!
Bonnes vacances! (et bonnes revisions!) 🙂