O Level English composition writing can pose some serious challenges for students.
For instance, most students will ask, “How do I score a distinction?”
Really, it is not the most impossible of situations.
Many students have scored an A1 in O level English but the exact formula is the real issue at stake here.
In order to get to the A1 part, we need to look at the most basic question here.
What are the most common errors made in an O-level English composition?
And…how does one avoid it?
This is really the main obstacle.
Once you clear this hurdle, the rest is easy.
Ok, ok, you are nodding.
But what exactly are these hurdles? Are there many or just one?
Of course, there are quite a few and I will be outlining the top 4 common ones inO level English. You may make it your daily task to avoid them.
Error #1 – Starting a sentence with ‘I’ repeatedly
Though this may not be the glaring error you thought it was, it will definitely mean that you’re lacking in style.
I mean, writing several sentences that start with ‘I was thrilled to see my friend.’ ‘I decided to invite her to my home.’ ‘I made her a smoothie which she liked.’
This sort of writing signals one clear fact. That is, you are lacking in ideas.
And this is a really bad signal to send out to your reader. Though this is not a spelling or grammar mistake, it means that you will have a low score for your style.
Avoid this and begin a sentence with some other word such as, ‘we’ or ‘Though’. These are simple and will make a refreshing change.
You may also look at another blog I wrote about connecting sentences where I discuss creative and impressive ways of starting sentences inO level English.
Error #2 – Writing never-ending sentences
Are you one of those people who write an entire paragraph without a full stop?
If you are, you must be brimming over with ideas and have injected so much enthusiasm into your work that you cannot seem to stop, or you are making lots of glaring grammatical errors by writing like that.
One of the mistakes a student makes in writing never-ending sentences is that you lose track of your grammar.
You may not be providing the right synthesis or connecting words. Or you may have forgotten how you started and used the wrong pronoun midway.
These are mistakes you want to avoid inO level English so use shorter sentences instead.
It should not be too short so settle for about 10 to 15 words if you can.
Error #3 – Repeating the same word throughout your essay
Most students will find a favourite word of theirs. It is usually, ‘maybe’ or ‘perhaps’ or ‘soon.’ There could be others.
The problem is that once you get used to inserting this word in your sentence, it becomes a habit.
This is also called ‘safe writing’ where you feel you can fall back on this type of word whenever you are stuck.
It helps you to move on, but it can also mean that your sentences sound boring.
When you write, you need to be creative and enthusiastic. There must be life and movement in your words. It should never be repetitive and boring.
Error #4 – Not reading the question properly
Students are usually in a feverish state when they sit for theirO level English exams. They are full of pent up energy, raring to go on and accomplish the best they can.
When they see a question that is familiar, they might quickly start doing it without reading it through a second time.
Sometimes, they do read it a second time when they are halfway through, and it might be a bit too late to restart.
Remember that examiners like to give tricky questions. It may sound familiar, but it could be asking you for something else from what you had prepared.
Always read theO level English question through carefully while looking out for inferences and hidden meanings.
Look out for singular and plural parts of the question and answer accordingly.
I cannot emphasize this enough.
These are some of the most common errors in O Level English composition writing.
Avoiding errors is certainly one of the ways of reaching for that coveted A1.
It is not really such a difficult course. Just make sure that you stay on track!