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The State Education Office, Perak Darul Ridzuan would like to thank the following for
their contribution in the production of the module for writing – ZOOM IN AND WRITE.

1.1 State Programme Coordinators

Tn. Hj Mohd Yasin bin Mohamod

State Education Language Officer

En Mohd Salleh b. Mohd Arshad

Curriculum Supervisor for English

Pejabat Pelajaran Negeri Perak

1.2 Module Panelists

1. PN. Hjh Nuri Mina bt Mahalil
SMK Tun Saban
33100 Pengkalan Hulu

2. En Aimran b Mohamed Yasin Aini

SMK Pangkor
32300 Pulau Pangkor

3. Pn Norzidah bt Bakri
SMK Dato Abd Rahman Yaakob,
32600 Bota

4. En. Michael a/l Gregory

SMK Seri Iskandar
32600 Bota

5. En. Ignatius Ben a/l Stepen Julianose

SMK Sultan Yussof,
31000 Batu Gajah.

6. En Nicholas Nathan
SMK Yuk Kwan,
31000 Batu Gajah

7. Pn Monica Yeo
SMK St. George
34000 Taiping

8. Cik Ling Peck Leng

SMK Seri Manjung
32040 seri Manjung

9. Pn Theresa Wong
SMK Nan Hwa

32000 Setiawan.



2.1 Rationale:

1. The students’ achievement in the English Language paper affects

the overall performance of a school, district and state.

2. Writing is identified as the main cause for low achievement

3. Insufficient relevant materials on writing that are tailored to cater to

the needs of students who are sitting for the SPM examination.

4. Students are not adequately exposed to the latest tips and

relevant techniques in answering English Language 1119 Paper 1.

2.2 Objectives:

1. To increase the percentage of passes in English Language 1119 Paper in the

State of Perak.

2. To motivate and enhance students’ confidence in writing.

3. To assist teachers and students to zoom in (focus) on important

aspects of writing for SPM examination.

4. To provide teachers with tips and techniques needed for

students to acquire the skills in writing.

5. To help teachers with suitable materials to be used by

students in their writing lessons.

6. To assess students‘ competency in writing for examination purpose.

2.3 Organisation of the module

This module has been designed to facilitate teachers and students in enhancing
their writing skills. It is organised based on the requirements of the SPM Paper 1
– Section A (Directed Writing) and Section B (Continuous Writing) only. Selective
topics in this module are to show the strategies in tackling the questions
effectively. Sample essays with guidelines and examination tips are given. In
addition, different formats, analysis of past years’ questions and mark schemes
are provided for easy reference.


Analysis of Directed Writing
Types of Directed Writing
2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Formal Letter
Informal Letter √ √
Report √
Speech √
Article √

Analysis of Continuous Writing

Types of Year Topic
Narrative 2004 Write a story ending with: “…We had never laugh so much in
our lives.”
2005 Write a story entitled: ‘An Unexpected Visitor.’
2006 Write a story ending with: “If only I had been more careful, that
wouldn’t have happenned.”

2007 Write a story beginning with: “Kim was nervous when the door
opened …”
2008 Write a story ending with, “… Now I realized the value a true
2004 Describe a festival celebrated in your area.
2005 Describe the biggest challenge in your life.
Descriptive 2006 Describe an enjoyable weekend you have experienced.
2007 Describe an embarrasing experience in your life.
2008 Write about a person who has worked hard to success.
2004 -
2005 -
2006 -
‘Teenagers today are only interested in entertainment’. Do you
agree? Support your opinion.
2008 Examinations – good or bad.
2004 How can we help promote tourism in school.
2005 How to keep oneself healthy.
Factual 2006 How can television help students in their studies
2007 -
2008 -
2004 Clothes
2005 Music
Open 2006 Foods
2007 Tomorrow
2008 Stars
2004 My Ideal School
If you were given a chance to be anybody, who would you like to
be and why?
Reflective What changes would you like to see in your life in the next ten
2007 My early years
2008 My perfect future husband or wife


Format of the Paper :

The English Language 1119/1 Paper deals with writing skills

Section A : Directed Writing 35 marks

Section B : Continuous Writing 50 marks

TOTAL 85 marks



I. The Directed Writing is assessed in two parts:

• Content - 15 marks
• Language - 20 marks
TOTAL 35 marks

 Candidates will be assessed on their ability to carry out the

instructions given.

 Marks will be awarded for mentioning the points given.

 Candidates are also expected to analyse the stimulus provided and to

develop the ideas.

 In writing tasks, marks would be allocated for the usage of the correct



1 The Continuous Writing is assessed by *holistic impression*. Marks for

language will be awarded for :

 language accuracy
 sentence structure / variety
 paragraphing
 vocabulary
 relevant points
 spelling
 style and tone

• Language - 50 marks
TOTAL 50 marks

Types of Directed Writing

No Types Break down

1 Report i. General Report *
ii. Newspaper Reports *
iii. Minutes of Meeting
iv. Police reports
v. Book reports

2 Speech / Talk i. A Farewell Speech

ii. A Welcoming Speech
iii. General Speech *

3 Informal Letter i. A Letter of Apology

ii. A Letter to the newspaper
iii. A General Letter *

4 Formal Letter i. A Letter of Complaint *

ii. A Letter to place an Order
iii. A letter of Enquiry *
iv. A Letter Application

5 Story Writing (Guided) i. A Story on Moral Value

6 Articles i. Describing Processes and

ii. Describing People *, Places
* and Events

7 Dialogue / Interview i. An Informal Discussion

ii. An Interview
iii. A Telephone Conversation

* These parts will be ‘zoomed in’ in this module.

Allocation of Marks for Language

Grades / Descriptors

• Language – entirely accurate, no gross errors

A • Sentence structures - varied
19 - 20
• Vocabulary – sophisticated and used with precision
• Punctuation - accurate

• Spelling - accurate
• Paragraphing – unified and appropriately linked
• Tone and style – appropriate
• Interest – aroused and sustained throughout

• Language - almost always accurate - minor or first

B draft slip
16 - 18 • Sentence structures – some variations
• Vocabulary – wide enough with some precision
• Punctuation – almost always accurate
• Spelling – almost accurate
• Paragraphing – some unity; appropriately linked
• Tone and style – almost appropriate
• Interest – aroused and sustained almost throughout

• Language - largely accurate

C • Sentence structures - simple structures used
13-15 without errors; mistakes occur in more sophisticated
structures, tendency to repeat some sentence types
creating monotony
• Vocabulary – wide enough to convey meaning but
lack precision
• Punctuation - generally accurate
• Spelling – simple words spelt correctly; errors occur
when sophisticated words are used
• Paragraphing – some unity; inappropriate linkage
• Interest – some aroused but not sustained

Grades / Descriptors

• Language - sufficiently accurate, patches of clarity

D • Sentence structures – mostly simple structures
• Vocabulary – adequate but not developed to
• Punctuation – less accurate
• Spelling – some errors in the usage of simple words
• Paragraphing – lack unity
• Interest - lacking

• Language - meaning never in doubt , some Single

E Word Errors (SWE) which hamper reading
7-9 • Sentence structures – unable to sustain accuracy
• Vocabulary – limited
• Punctuation – more errors
• Spelling – more errors in the usage of simple words
• Paragraphing – not well-arranged
• Interest – distracted due to partial relevance to the

• Language - meaning fairly clear, frequent SWEs

F which hamper reading
4-6 • Sentence structures - very few accurate sentences
• Vocabulary - inadequate
• Punctuation – major errors
• Spelling – mostly errors
• Paragraphing - may not have any paragraph
• Interest - barely

Grades / Descriptors

G • Language – makes little sense, some Multiple Word

2-3 Errors (MWE) which cause blurring
• Sentence structures - One or two accurate

• Language - impossible to recognise as English,

H makes no sense
0-1 • Wholesale copying of the rubric

Types of Continuous Writing
* These parts will be ‘zoomed in’ in this module.

No Types Break down

i. introduction of plot and setting

1 Narrative ii. characterization
iii. development of plot
iv. the resolution / ending

i. introduction : definition / quotation /

2 Reflective anecdote
ii. expressing personal views, thoughts and
iii. use of warms tones of language
iv. show depth of thought and well
organised ideas
v. describe qualities / traits
vi. add humour if possible

i. description of people / places / events

3 Descriptive ii. description of physical traits / qualities
iii. use of adjectives to describe sensory
iv. use suitable expressions / idioms /
v. in chronological order of time and space
vi. indicate the lesson learnt or moral


4 Argumentative i. make a stand

ii. advantages and disadvantages
iii. expressing opinion / providing solutions
to problems
iv. expressing arguments for and against a
topic / issue by supportive evidence
v. compare and contrast something or

5 Factual i. definition of issues and topics

ii. identify at least 8 content points
iii. advantages and disadvantages
iv. reasons and factors
v. measures / steps / solutions

6 Open Essay i. factual account ( provide statistics )

( factual or ii. definition of issues and topics
narrative ) iii. advantages and disadvantages
iv. reasons and factors
v. measures / steps / solutions
vi. narratives

Continuous Writing
Question 3

The continuous writing is basically assessed by *general impression*. However, the

following levels can be noted:

Category Marks Allocated Remarks / Description

Excellent 46-50 • Hardly any mistakes in grammar (including spelling
and punctuation)
• Effective use of varied sentence structures
• Wide vocabulary, used precisely and expressively
• Good and relevant points
• Coherence in paragraphing
• Well-organised points
• Essay is very interesting and shows originality
• Tone of language is accurate

Good 40-45 • Few mistakes in grammar. Mistakes arise from

unusual or complex language use.
• Some variety in sentence structures
• Some width in vocabulary – can convey shades of
• Relevant points

• Some coherence in paragraphing
• Points are organised in paragraphs
• Essay is interesting in certain parts but not
sustained throughout
• Tone of language is suitable

Satisfactory 34-39 • Some mistakes in grammar but language use is

mainly accurate
• Some variety in sentence structures. However,
generally, repetitive sentence type are found.
• Mainly basic vocabulary. Errors in use of more
ambitious vocabulary.
• Relevant points
• Some coherence in paragraphing
• Not very well organised points
• Essay is slightly interesting

Passable 24-33 • Many mistakes in grammar but the meaning is still

clear. Patches of accurate language use occur.
• Little variety in sentence structure. Simple structure
dominates the composition.
• Only basic vocabulary. Errors in use of more
ambitious vocabulary
• Points are mostly relevant; some illogical /
irrelevant points
• Little coherence in paragraphing
• Not very well organised points
• Essay is not interesting

Unsatisfactory 16-23 • Many serious mistakes in grammar but the

meaning is fairly clear. A few simple structures may
be correct
• Little variety in sentence structures
• Only basic vocabulary. Errors in use of more
ambitious vocabulary.
• Topic is not well discussed
• Disorganized points
• Little coherence in paragraphing
• Essay is not interesting

Poor 10-15 • Many serious mistakes in grammar and the

meaning is not very clear
• Only simple sentence structures
• Very basic vocabulary; many errors in use of words
• Poor treatment of topic due to poor linguistic ability
• Hardly any organization; probably no paragraphing

6-9 • Very frequent and serious errors in grammar and
vocabulary make the meaning barely

0-5 • Almost unrecognisable as English

• Almost no sense can be made of it all


1. Ministry of Education, 2009. Koleksi Kertas Peperiksaan Sebenar. Kuala Lumpur:


2. Lee, A and Nan Y.A et al, 2002 150 Model Compositions for SPM, Kuala
Lumpur: Fajar Bakti.

3. R Tan, J and Ainon Zuba’ar (2007) Longman Reference Text Series, Shah Alam:
Pearson Longman.

4. Koh S.C 2002 Bahasa Inggeris 1119 Petaling Jaya; Sasbadi

5. Sebastian, Mary 2004: (Step by Step Series, ‘Model Compositions for SPM 1119
English, Penerbit ESPI.

6. Sebastian Mary, Roy, Jayati 2007: ‘Spot On’ Model Composition and Summaries
for SPM 1119 English Oxford Fajar.