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Integrated Skills in English (ISE)

Guide for Teachers ISE III (C1)


Reading & Writing | Speaking & Listening

Trinity College London


www.trinitycollege.com
Charity number 1014792
Patron HRH The Duke of Kent KG
Copyright 2015 Trinity College London
Published by Trinity College London
First edition, March 2015

Contents

Contents
ISE III Reading & Writing exam
Overview of the ISE Reading & Writing exam 

Who is ISE Reading & Writing for?


Introduction to ISE Reading & Writing tasks
Glossary of reading skills for ISE III
Glossary of writing aims for ISE III
Candidate profile

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Task specifications for ISE III Reading & Writing

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Task 1 Long reading


Task 2 Multi-text reading
Task 3 Reading into writing
Task 4 Extended writing

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Preparation activities for ISE III Reading & Writing

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Task 1 Long reading: Birth order


Task 2 Multi-text reading: Interesting facts about butterflies
Task 3 Reading into writing: Travel in the past and now
Task 4 Extended writing: Writing about changes in popular entertainment

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam


Overview of the ISE Speaking & Listening exam

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Who is ISE Speaking & Listening for?


Introduction to ISE Speaking & Listening tasks
Glossary of speaking aims for ISE III
Glossary of listening skills for ISE III
Candidate profile

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Task specifications for ISE III Speaking & Listening

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Topic task
Collaborative task
Conversation task
Independent listening task

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Preparation activities for ISE III Speaking & Listening

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Topic task: ISE III topic presentation structure


Collaborative task: The internet A waste of time?
Conversation task: Yes, but is it art?
Listening task: How to write a summary using note-taking skills

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Appendices
Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

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Appendix 2 Information on the Speaking & Listening exam

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Appendix 3 Suggested grammar for ISE III

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Appendix 4 ISE III Task 3 Reading into writing rating scale

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Appendix 5 ISE III Task 4 Extended writing rating scale

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Appendix 6 ISE III Speaking & Listening rating scale

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Appendix 7 ISE III Independent listening rating scale

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Foreword
Trinitys Integrated Skills in English (ISE) exam assesses all four language skills reading, writing,
speaking and listening. In the ISE exam, all four skills are tested in an integrated way, reflecting
how skills are used in real-life situations.
This guide will:
give you a brief overview of the two modules of the ISE III exam Reading & Writing and
Speaking & Listening
offer some practical advice for preparing students for each task in the exam
provide some example activities that you can use in the classroom.
For more classroom activities to help prepare your students for ISE as well as the exam specifications
documents see www.trinitycollege.com/ISE
Please note that ISE IV has a different format see www.trinitycollege.com/ISE for details.

ISE III Reading


& Writing exam

ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Overview of the ISE Reading & Writing exam


Trinitys ISE Reading & Writing exam tests reading and writing skills through an integrated approach,
reflecting the way reading and writing interact in the real world. The ISE Reading & Writing exam is
currently offered at four levels of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) from A2
to C1. The purpose of the exam is to assess candidates skills in reading and writing in the English
language in a context which reflects their real world activity and their reason for learning English.
The reading texts reflect the range of sources a student may encounter in an educational or academic
context and the way that they need to find, select and report relevant and appropriate information.
The writing tasks reflect the kind of activities a student does in a school or college context, such as
essay writing.

Who is ISE Reading & Writing for?


The intended candidate is a young person or adult, typically at secondary school or college who is
using English as a second or foreign language as part of their studies in order to develop their skills
and improve their knowledge of a range of subject areas. The typical ISE candidate is aged between
11 and 19, but may be older.
Candidates at the lower levels of the exam (ISE Foundation and ISE I) are generally young people or
adults in school or college who are taking ISE as part of their preparation for entrance into university
or as evidence to progress to a higher level of English study within their mainstream or English
language school. At the higher levels of the exam (ISE II and ISE III), candidates are typically young
people or adults preparing for further education who are required to prove their English language
proficiency levels within an educational context.

ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Introduction to ISE Reading & Writing tasks


The Reading & Writing exam consists of four tasks.
Task 1 is the Long reading task, where candidates read a single text and answer 15 questions. The
aims of this task are to understand the main idea of a paragraph or text and to understand specific
information at sentence, phrase and word levels.
Task 2 is the Multi-text reading task, where candidates read three texts (in ISE Foundation) or four texts
(in ISE I, II and III) and answer 15 questions. The aims of this task are to understand the main idea of a
paragraph or text, to understand specific information at sentence, phrase and word levels and to find
specific information in different texts in order to create a text summary.
Task 3 is the Reading into writing task, where candidates produce a piece of writing based on the three
or four texts in Task 2.
Task 4 is the Extended writing task, where candidates produce a piece of writing in response to a question.
ISE Foundation

ISE I

ISE II

ISE III

CEFR level

A2

B1

B2

C1

Time

2 hours

2 hours

2 hours

2 hours

Task 1

Long reading
300 words
15 questions

Long reading
400 words
15 questions

Long reading
500 words
15 questions

Long reading
700 words
15 questions

Task 2

Multi-text reading
3 texts
300 words
15 questions

Multi-text reading
4 texts
400 words
15 questions

Multi-text reading
4 texts
500 words
15 questions

Multi-text reading
4 texts
700 words
15 questions

Task 3

Reading into writing Reading into writing Reading into writing Reading into writing
70100 words
100130 words
150180 words
200230 words

Task 4

Extended writing
70100 words

Extended writing
100130 words

Extended writing
150180 words

Extended writing
200230 words

Please see the next page for a glossary of reading skills and writing aims for ISE III.

ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Glossary of reading skills for ISE III


Reading for general
comprehension

Reading complex texts or infographics with information, ideas or


opinions at a detail level, and with an implied writers attitude.

Skimming

Reading to get the general meaning of the paragraph, text or infographic


(illustration with text)

Reading for gist

Reading to get the main idea of the paragraph, text or infographic


Reading to quickly identify the content and relevance of news items,
articles and reports on a wide range of professional topics
Deciding if closer study is worthwhile

Scanning

Reading longer and more complex texts or infographics to find relevant details
Identifying relevant information and common themes and links across
multiple texts, including the finer points of detail, eg attitudes implied

Careful reading to
understand specific
facts, information
and significant points

Reading to understand specific, factual information at the word, phrase


or sentence level
Reading to understand important points in a text
Looking for main points and clues from context
Identifying which information is factual, which is opinion
Comparing and evaluating information at sentence, phrase and word level
Identifying finer points of detail including attitudes and implied as well as
stated opinions
Guessing the meaning of unknown words and sentences in their context
Understanding cohesion by focusing on wordgrammar patterns and
words which go together (collocations)
Adapting style and speed of reading to different texts and purposes

Deducing meaning

Using contextual, grammatical and lexical cues to infer attitude, mood


and intentions, and anticipate what will come next
Guessing the meaning of unknown sentences, phrases and words from
their context
Using lexico-grammar patterns or collocation to understand cohesion

Understand a range
of texts

Reading to understand in detail a wide range of lengthy, complex texts


likely to be encountered in social, professional or academic life
Reading a wide range of lengthy, complex texts you might encounter in
social, professional or academic life
Reading texts that are also outside of your field of interest.

Summarising

Reading to understand specific, factual information at word, phrase,


sentence and paragraph levels.
Reading to get the main idea of the paragraph, text or infographic
Paraphrasing or summarising long, complex and demanding texts
Combining information to produce detailed responses with accuracy and care

Glossary of writing aims for ISE III

Reading for writing

Showing understanding of reading texts


Identifying common themes in reading texts
Summarising or paraphrasing ideas from reading texts

Task fulfilment

Answering the question fully


Using the correct number of words to answer the question
Showing awareness of the reader and the purpose for writing

Organisation and structure

Presenting ideas and arguments clearly


Using the best format to fulfil the task
Structuring the writing appropriately, eg using beginnings and
endings and using paragraphs

Language control

Using a range of grammar and vocabulary


Using grammar and vocabulary accurately
Using spelling and punctuation accurately

ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Candidate profile
A candidates who passes ISE III can understand a range of lengthy, complex texts. In task 1 and task 2,
they are assessed on their ability to read across several texts and demonstrate a range of reading skills
including skimming, scanning, reading for gist, reading for main ideas or purpose, reading for detail,
reading for specific information, inferring, summarising and evaluation, comparing and using a range
of reading skills as required.
A candidate who successfully passes ISE III can:

Reading
understand in detail lengthy, complex texts, whether or not they relate to his/her own area of
speciality, provided he/she can reread difficult sections
understand in detail a wide range of lengthy, complex texts likely to be encountered in social,
professional or academic life, identifying finer points of detail including attitudes and implied as well
as stated opinions
use contextual, grammatical and lexical cues to infer attitude, mood and intentions and anticipate
what will come next
summarise long, demanding texts

Reading into writing


In addition to the reading skills for task 1 and task 3 (above) and the writing competences for task 3
(below), a candidate who successfully passes ISE III Task 4 Reading into Writing can:
identify connections and themes and between multiple texts in task 3
identify information from task 3 that is relevant to task 4
synthesise the information in task 3 to produce elaborated responses with clarity and precision in
task 4

Writing
In task 3 and task 4, candidates are assessed on their ability to write according to four categories:

Reading for writing


Task fulfilment
Organisation and structure
Language control

A candidate who successfully passes ISE III Task 4 Reading into writing and Task 3 Writing can:
express himself/herself with clarity and precision, relating to the addressee flexibly and effectively
write clear, detailed and well-structured descriptions and imaginative texts on complex subjects,
underlining the relevant salient issues, in an assured, personal, natural style appropriate to the
reader in mind
expand and support points of view at some length with subsidiary points, reasons and relevant
examples and rounding off with an appropriate conclusion.
These reading and writing profiles are based on the level Proficient User, C1, of the Council of Europes
Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR).
The candidate profile above is a simplified version for quick reference for teachers.

ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Task specifications for ISE III Reading & Writing


Task 1 Long reading

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Task

One reading text followed by 15 questions.

Text

Genre: The text is complex with information, ideas and/or opinions at detail level,
and implied writers attitude. It is the type of text that the candidate sees in their
own educational context (eg textbook, article, review, magazine, website).
Subject areas:
Independence
Roles in the family
Ambitions
Communication
Stereotypes
The school curriculum
Role models
Youth behaviour
Competitiveness
Use of the internet
Young peoples rights
Designer goods
The media
International events
Advertising
Equal opportunities
Lifestyles
Social issues
The arts
The future of the planet
The rights of the individual
Scientific developments
Economic issues
Stress management.

Text length

700 words divided into five paragraphs.

Number of
questions
Question
types

15 questions

Assessment

Title matching (Questions 15)


These require the candidate to choose the most appropriate titles for each
paragraph of the text. The text has five paragraphs and there are six titles to choose
from. Some useful reading subskills to practise for this section are:
skimming
scanning
reading for gist
reading for main ideas
understand the main idea of each paragraph.
Selecting the true statements (Questions 610)
These require the candidate to select the five true statements from a list of eight
possible answers. In the list, five statements will be true according to the text and
three will be false. Some useful reading subskills to practise for this section are:
careful reading for detail
understanding specific, factual information at the sentence level
distinguishing principal statement from supporting
examples or details, distinguishing fact from opinion
comparing, evaluating and inferring.
Completing sentences (gap fill) (Questions 1115)
These require the candidate to complete sentences with a word or phrase taken
from the text (up to three words).
The skills that the candidate must use are:
careful reading for comprehension
careful reading for detail
cohesion via lexico-grammar or collocation
understand specific, factual information at the word and/or phrase level OR
inferring and understanding across paragraphs (eg writers attitude, line of
argument etc).
Each question is worth one mark.

Timing

Candidates are recommended to spend 20 minutes on this part of the exam.

ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Task 2 Multi-text reading


Task

Four reading texts followed by 15 questions.

Text

Genre: The texts are complex with information, ideas and/or opinions at detail level,
and implied writers attitude. One text is a graphic representation of information
with some text (for example a diagram, drawing, map, table taken from a textbook,
article, review, newspaper article, online content). The texts are of the kind that
would be familiar to candidates through their educational context, for example the
kind of texts used in schools and colleges (eg textbook, article, review, newspaper
article, online content) and in their own language learning experience.
Subject areas:
Independence
Ambitions
Stereotypes
Role models
Competitiveness
Young peoples rights
The media
Advertising
Lifestyles
The arts
The rights of the individual
Economic issues

Roles in the family


Communication
The school curriculum
Youth behaviour
Use of the internet
Designer goods
International events
Equal opportunities
Social issues
The future of the planet
Scientific developments
Stress management

All four texts are on the same topic and should be thematically linked.
Text length
Number of
questions
Question
types

700 words across four texts.


One text is mainly visual with some written language.
15 questions in three sections.
Multiple matching (Questions 1620)
These require the candidate to choose the most appropriate sentence to describe each
text. Some useful reading subskills to practise for this section are:
skimming
gist
reading for purpose or main idea.
Selecting the true statements (Questions 2125)
These require the candidate to select the five true statements from a list of eight
possible answers. In the list, five statements will be true according to the text and
three will be false.
The skills that the candidate must use are:
careful reading for detail
understanding specific, factual
information at the sentence level
inferring and comparing
scanning.
Completing summary notes from a bank of options (gap fill) (Questions 2630)
These require the candidate to complete sentences with a word or phrase taken from
the text (up to three words). 10 possible answers are given, out of which the candidate
selects the correct five.
The skills that the candidate must use are:
careful reading for comprehension
understanding specific, factual information at the word and/or phrase level across texts
comparing and evaluating
inferring
summarising
the texts and using this to create a response.

Assessment

Each question is worth one mark.

Timing

Candidates are recommended to spend 20 minutes on this part of the exam.


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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Task 3 Reading into writing


Task

A writing task in which the four texts from task 3 are used to respond to a prompt.
The response should only take information from the texts in task 3.
There is space for planning the response. The candidate should go back and check
the response when they have finished.

Task focus

This section assesses the ability to:


identify information that is relevant to the writing task and common themes
and links across multiple texts and the finer points of detail, eg attitudes implied
paraphrase/summarise complex and demanding texts
synthesise such information to produce elaborated responses with clarity
and precision.

Output length 200230 words


Genre

The writing genre will be one of the following:


descriptive essay
discursive essay
argument essay
report
proposal
article (magazine or online).

Timing

Candidates are recommended to spend 40 minutes on this part of the exam.

Task 4 Extended writing


Task

Task focus

A writing task in which the candidate responds to a prompt.


There is space for planning the response.
The candidate should go back and check the response when they have finished.
This section assesses the ability to produce a discursive, well-developed text
following the instructions. The target language functions that the candidates are
expected to use are express opinions, evaluation, make suggestions effectively.

Output length 200230 words


Output genre

The writing genre will be one of the following:


descriptive essay
informal letter
discursive essay
formal letter or email
argument essay
review
article (magazine or online)
report.
informal email

Topic

The writing prompt will be on one of the topics for ISE III:
Independence
Roles in the family
Ambitions
Communication
Stereotypes
The school curriculum
Role models
Youth behaviour
Competitiveness
Use of the internet
Young peoples rights
Designer goods
The media
International events
Advertising
Equal opportunities
Lifestyles
Social issues
The arts
The future of the planet
The rights of the individual
Scientific developments
Economic issues
Stress management.

Timing

Candidates are recommended to spend 40 minutes on this part of the exam.

For a sample ISE Reading & Writing paper, please see Appendix 1.
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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Preparation activities for ISE III Reading & Writing


Task 1 Long reading: Birth order
Teacher notes
Level: ISE III
Focus: Task 1 Long reading
Aims: To develop reading strategies by reading a short article about the impact of birth order on a
childs development and answering three sets of questions
Objectives: To scan an article for gist, to skim an article and answer True / False questions and to
skim an article to complete sentences with information from the text
Skill: Skimming and scanning
Topic: Birth order and roles in the family
Language functions: Developing and justifying an argument, summarising and evaluating options
Lexis: Lexis related to roles in the family
Materials needed: Whiteboard, pens, one student worksheet per student and dictionaries
Timing: 1 hour

Procedure
Preparation
Print or copy one worksheet per student.

In class
1. Explain to the class that they will be doing a reading activity today in class and that this will help
them to prepare for Reading task 1 of the ISE III exam.
2. Write the following three questions on the board and ask students to discuss them in pairs.
1. Do you have any siblings?
2. How would people typically describe the eldest child, the middle child and the youngest child of
a family?
3. Do you believe that birth order plays an important role in a childs development?
Carry out group feedback.
3. Give each student one student worksheet and ask them to carry out task A. Tell them that the eight
words or phrases in the box are in a text on birth order. Tell the students to write the correct word or
phrase next to the definition. Ask them to work alone first and tell them they can use a dictionary.
Then tell them to compare their answers with their partner. Carry out feedback as a group and
write the answers on the board. Ask one or more concept-check questions to check if students have
understood the words. Here are some examples of the concept-check questions you could ask: Can
you give an example of a household chore? If there are subtle differences between two things, is it
easy or difficult to see them?
4. Tell the class they are going to read about the impact of birth order on a childs development. Ask the
students to complete task B. Tell them to read the text quickly and choose the best summary from a
list. Ask students to compare their answers in pairs and then feedback as a group.
5. Write reading for gist and skimming on the board. Tell the students that task B asked them to read
the text for gist or general understanding without the need to concentrate on all the details. Tell the
students that this reading skill is also called skimming.
6. Ask students to read the texts again and complete task C. Ask the students to decide whether each
statement is True or False. Ask students to compare answers in pairs and then feedback as a group.
7. Write reading for detail and scanning on the board. Elicit from the students the difference between
this reading task and task B.
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ISE III Reading & Writing exam


8. Ask the students to carry out task D. Tell them to complete the sentences with information from the
text. Ask them to compare answers with a partner. Carry out feedback as a group.
9. Tell the students that task D tested their understanding of specific information at word and sentence
level. Elicit that this requires scanning the text, not skimming.

Extension activity
1. Write the following two sentence starters on the whiteboard:
1. What surprised me most was
2. I dont really think this is true because
Ask students, in pairs, to discuss their opinion about what they have read and tell them to start the
discussion with one of the sentence starters. Carry out feedback as a group.
2. Tell the stronger students to write a new question about the text. Then they ask another student
this question.

Further support activity


1. Tell the students finding the task difficult that they can use a dictionary and look up unknown words
while reading the text.
2. Ask the students finding the task difficult to work with a stronger student when comparing answers
after each reading task.

Homework
Ask the students to interview someone about whether they think birth order matters. Ask the students
to report back in the next class.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Student worksheet: Birth order


Task A Vocabulary
Choose a word or phrase from the box and write it next to the correct definition below.
distort (verb) prone to error notorious (adjective)
subtle (adjective)

rebel against (verb + preposition)

chores (noun, plural)

syndrome (noun) manipulate (verb)

1. Famous but for a negative reason


2. To give a false meaning to
3. To influence someone skilfully often to get something
done for your own benefit
4. Difficult to understand because of fine differences
5. Likely to be wrong
6. The everyday work around the house
7. Resist something or someone
8. A pattern of behaviour

Task B
Read the text below quickly. Choose the best summary of the text from the descriptions below.
1. Middle child syndrome.
2. Birth order has a significant impact on a childs development.
3. Birth order plays only a minor part in the development of a child.
Reading text

JUST LET YOUR CHILDREN BE THEMSELVES

A recent study on the impact of birth order suggests that firstborns have a higher IQ. The problem is
that studies such as this distort the bigger picture by confirming birth order stereotypes.
The study was conducted in Norway and showed that the eldest children had a slightly higher IQ on
average than their younger siblings. Nobody can explain the results of the study. It has been suggested
that the eldest children benefit from more attention before the arrival of their siblings. Another theory
is that the eldest children have more responsibility which helps them to develop their brain.
It is a good idea though to look at the study in more detail before blindly applying its results to your
own family. The subjects of the study were all male, the area was limited to Norway and IQ test results
are notoriously prone to error. Important to note is that the averages for both older and younger
children were well within the normal range so it is probably not necessary to start worrying.
It is not advisable to pay too much attention to the rather subtle impact birth order has on the
development of your child. There are simply too many contributing factors from genes to life in
the womb.
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ISE III Reading & Writing exam


Firstborns
The eldest children are often said to possess leadership skills such as organising and logical thinking and
to be better at dealing with adults. They often have to take more responsibility but it is not ideal to put
more pressure on them by expecting them to behave as a parent to their younger siblings. For parents it is
probably better not to pay too much attention to this theory as it may lead to unrealistic expectations.

Middle children
Popular wisdom also has it that middle children are very diplomatic and sociable. In order to stand out they
may rebel against their parents. This is often referred to as middle child syndrome. What parents could do to
prevent this is to give the middle child the responsibility that normally would be given to the eldest child.

Last children
It is commonly claimed that last-borns are spoiled and good at manipulating others to get things done for
them. The youngest may appear cute compared to their older siblings but they obviously need to be shown
limitations. Parents should give them their share of chores.

Task C
Read the text again. Are the statements true or false?
1. A Norwegian study suggests that the eldest children in a family have a higher IQ.
2. Results of IQ tests are normally highly reliable.
3. The difference in IQ between the oldest and youngest children is significant.
4. The author suggests giving the eldest child a taste of what it is to have the responsibility of an adult.
5. When middle children feel left out, they may seek attention through defiant behaviour.
6. The youngest children often know naturally what the limits of acceptable behaviour are.
Task D
Complete the sentences with one or two words from the text.
1. It is important to look at the context in which a study took place in order to decide if the results are

2. Having more
3. Birth order theories may result in
firstborn children.

or not.
may help developing the mind.
of the parents in their

4. Middle children are always caught in the middle which means they may have developed the skill to be
more
5. Youngest children are often labelled as

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Answer key
Task A
1. notorious
2. distort
3. manipulate
4. subtle
5. prone to error
6. chores
7. rebel against
8. syndrome

Task B
3. Birth order plays only a minor part in the development of a child.

Task C
1. True
2. False
3. False
4. False
5. True
6. False

Task D
1. Distorted
2. Responsibility
3. Unrealistic expectations
4. Diplomatic
5. Spoiled

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Task 2 Multi-text reading: Interesting facts about butterflies


Level: ISE III
Focus: Task 2 Multi-text reading
Aims: To read for gist and specific information and to deduce meaning from context
Objectives: To talk about butterflies, to read four different texts, to understand the main meaning
of texts, to find specific information in texts, to use context to deduce meaning and to focus on the
language of scientific descriptions
Skills: Skimming and scanning and contextual deduction
Topic: The natural world
Language functions: Summarising, deducing and inferring
Lexis: Insects and habitat
Materials needed: Student worksheet and pictures of butterflies
Timing: 50 minutes

Procedure
Preparation
1. Print one student worksheet per student.
2. Prepare three pictures of different butterflies.

In class
1. Tell the class that they are going to practise reading some short texts to find specific information.
This will help them prepare for the Reading & Writing module of the ISE III exam. Tell students that in
the test, they will have 20 minutes to complete three questions.
2. Inform the students that the topic of todays lesson is butterflies. Show the class the three pictures
of the butterflies (prepared before the class). Ask them to individually think of four or five things they
know about butterflies. Give them one minute to do this. Then tell them to work in pairs and share
their information with their partner. Together they should think of six things that they know about
butterflies. Give them three minutes to share the information. Then have some open-class feedback
about what they know. You could put some key facts on the board, for example: they have wings,
they are multi-coloured, they have patterns, they grow from an egg, and butterflies lose a
shell or layer.
3. Tell the students they are going to read four short texts about butterflies to find the main information.
4. Hand out the worksheets. Ask the students to read the five statements in question 1. Then tell them
to read the four texts and decide which statement fits which text. Give the students five minutes.
Get the class to check their answers in pairs. In open-class, ask for the answers and ask the class
why they chose the answers. Write the correct answers on the board.
5. Now tell the class to look at question 2. Explain that only five of the sentences in AH are true
according to the texts. Tell them to read the sentences again and put T for true next to the
sentences they think are true. Give the students five minutes to do this. Then tell the students to
check their answers in pairs.
6. In open-class, ask for the true sentences and ask the class why they are true. Put the correct answers
on the board. Ask the class why the other sentences are not true or there is no information given.
7. Now tell the class that they are going to read and find some small details to complete the notes on
butterflies in question 3. They need to look back at the text in order to complete the notes. Tell the
students that this is an exam-type question and that they can use one to three words to complete
the notes.
8. Ask the class to read the notes in question 3. Write the first part of note a. on the board and ask the
class to look for the answer. In open-class, get the answer (a. proboscis) and write the sentence on
the board. Give the class five minutes to find the rest of the answers for these notes.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam


9. Get the class to check their answers in pairs and then check in open-class.
10. Now ask the class to read question 4, which is a language focus question and will not be in the exam
but will help them understand similar texts. Make sure they read the tip. Get the students to work in
pairs to find one example of the language in the texts, for example are covered in. Give the class five
minutes to find the language and then, in open-class, put the language on the board.

Extension activity
You could ask fast finishers to look up five new words from the texts in their dictionaries.

Further support activity


Tell students finding the task difficult that they can complete the answers for question 2 and question 3
in any order and do the ones they find easiest first.

Homework
Students can find out five pieces of information about moths and make sentences using the language
of description/processes to make five sentences about moths.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Student worksheet: Butterflies


Question 1
Read the texts below and decide which text each question refers to A, B, C or D?
1. details information on the physical process by which butterflies feed
2. records amusing facts for younger readers
3. provides a useful overview of all the species of butterfly
4. includes a description of the development of butterflies
5. suggests other reading for those who want to create an appropriate space for visiting butterflies

Text A
Elegant and beautiful, butterflies and moths never fail to impress. Their bodies are covered
in tiny sensory hairs and their wings are made up of tiny delicate scales. It is these scales that
give the wings their extraordinary variety of colours, patterns and sometimes iridescence. All
butterflies and moths go through a four-stage life cycle: egg, caterpillar, pupa and adult. A complete
metamorphosis takes place when a pupa emerges as a winged adult. Antarctica is the only
continent where these insects are not to be found. Otherwise they are widely distributed with the
majority of the 175,000 species living in the tropics.

Text B
Butterflies live on an all-liquid diet. Adult butterflies can only feed on liquids, usually nectar. Their
mouthparts are modified to enable them to drink, but they cant chew solids. A proboscis which
functions as a drinking straw, stays curled up under the butterflys chin until it finds a source of
nectar or other liquid nutrition. It then unfurls the long, tubular structure and sips up a meal.

Text C

www.butterflies.com
Butterfly Lovers - use these links to find out more about the order Lepidoptera!
Moth or Butterfly - whats the difference?
The famous Monarch
Scientific Monarch Watch - observe the Monarchs behaviour by volunteering
The diet of the Monarch
More general facts about butterflies
Know many families and how can you recognise them?
Anatomy of a butterfly: learn the parts. Is it wise to touch a butterfly?
Further useful texts to consult if youre interested in butterflies
Swallowtails and their attraction to the butterfly weed plant
The best environment: top tips for attracting butterflies to your backyard. This includes help in
designing the garden.
Out of the sun: how to make the best use of shady parts of your yard to attract butterflies

Text D
1. Butterflies fix their eggs onto leaves with a particular kind of glue.
2. Most caterpillars dont eat meat, so they are called herbivores.
3. When a caterpillar has grown completely, it fixes its body to a tiny branch or leaf before it sheds some
of its skin. Underneath, it has a hard chrysalis.
4. The fully grown butterfly gradually emerges from the chrysalis. However, it needs to wait for some time
before its able to fly while blood enters and pumps up its wings.
5. Depending on the type of butterfly, adults are known to survive from any period between a week
and a year.
6. Extensive and lengthy migration is what Monarch butterflies are well-known for. Each year the Monarch
flies huge distances of up to and perhaps more than 4000kms. Then the female produces new eggs
and the next generation of Monarchs completes the cycle by migrating back again.
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ISE III Reading & Writing exam


Question 2
Look at the following statements (A-H). There are five true statements. Write T next to those
statements which are true, according to the information given in the texts above.
A. Adult butterflies live for different lengths of time.
B. The patterns and colours on a butterflys wings are caused by tiny hairs.
C. The butterfly can fold its proboscis.
D. The majority of species of butterfly live in humid climates.
E. Butterflies are able to eat small insects.
F. Its possible for someone to assist scientists in their observations of a particular type of butterfly.
G. Butterflies and moths belong to the same group of insects.
H. A caterpillar emerges from a chrysalis.

Question 3
Look at the following notes. Complete the notes with information from the texts. Find a suitable word or
phrase in the texts above to complete the missing information in the gaps. Write your answers in the spaces.
Use between one and three words. Dont use more than three words.
a.

Butterflies sip nectar with a kind of straw called a

b.

This drinking straw is located

c.

A pupas final transformation is

d.

Iridescence is caused by

e.

One plant that attracts butterflies is a

f.

A butterflys wings need to fill with blood and dry before

Question 4
Find the language in the text that describes the features and development of butterflies and that you could
use to describe the features and development of other insects or animals. A tip: This is often passive and
there are two useful phrasal verbs.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Answer key
Question 1
1. B
2. D
3. A
4. A
5. C

Question 2
A. T
C. T
D. T
F. T
G. T

Question 3
a. proboscis
b under the/its chin
c. into a butterfly
d. tiny scales
e. butterfly weed
f. it can fly

Question 4
Are covered / are made up of / it is these scales that give / go through / take place / are (not) to be
found / are distributed / are modified / are known for

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Task 3 Reading into writing: Travel in the past and now


Level: ISE III
Focus: Task 3
Aims: To read for gist and specific information and to write 100 words on a topic
Objectives: To talk about holidays, to read about travel in the past, to learn some vocabulary and
grammar useful for the writing task, to write two paragraphs and to proofread
Skill: Skimming and scanning, writing about repeated actions in the past and writing about general
truths now
Topic: Society and living standards
Language functions: Summarising, evaluating options, past actions/course of events, different
standpoints, developing and justifying an argument, staging
Lexis: Means of travel and architecture
Materials needed: A picture of The Grand hotel, the student worksheet and a map of England
Timing: 1 hour

Procedure
Preparation
1. Print or copy one student worksheet per student.
2. Print one picture of The Grand hotel (one can be found at www.grand-uk.com)
3. Get a copy of or print a map of England.

In class
1. Tell the class that they are going to practise reading some short texts and then use these texts to write
an essay. Tell the students that this is preparation for task 3 of the ISE III Reading & Writing exam.
2. Write Holidays on the board. Now ask the class about their holidays. You can ask: where they go,
how they travel to their destination, and what kind of buildings they can stay in and what they do
when they get to their destination.
3. Write the following words on the board: package holiday, budget airline, mass tourism,
sun-bathing/getting brown, sun-tan lotion. Check that the students understand the meaning
of these words.
4. Tell the students they are going to read about an old hotel called The Grand. Show them a picture
of The Grand. Tell the class that this is in England and that you can see France from the windows
because the hotel is on the south coast and looks across the Channel. Show them Folkestone on
the map of England.
5. Give out the student worksheets. Draw the students attention to task A. Tell the class to read the
questions, then to read the paragraphs and find the answers to the questions. Get them to check
their answers in pairs and then tell you in open-class. Write the correct answers on the board.
6. Establish that there are differences between travelling in 1900 and now in terms of types of
transport, leisure activities, personal holiday habits, celebrity venues and types of accommodation.
Write the headings in the table overleaf on the board.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Types of transport Leisure activities

Personal holiday
habits

Celebrity venues

Types of
accommodation

In 1900:

In 1900:

In 1900:

In 1900:

In 1900:

Now:

Now:

Now:

Now:

Now:

7. Ask the class to discuss the headings in pairs for 510 minutes and to write down as many ideas as
they can for each category. They could say, for example, we take package holidays, we use budget
airlines, there are no steam trains left, people like to get brown/sunbathe so they dont put up
a parasol, they watch DVDs or go to the movies, there are no silent movies anymore, royalty/
celebrities dont often take holidays in the same places we do, hotels are usually modern with a
swimming pool but not a dance floor, rooms in hotels are often small, sometimes we can stay in
camp-sites in tents.
8. Now ask the class how we talk about things that people did regularly in the past. Write used to
+ verb and would + verb. Give examples like: In 1900, they used to use steam trains and They
would go to see a silent movie show, or we can use past simple. Ask the class to look at the other
language on the worksheet (see task B) and see if they can add to the words listed.
9. Tell the class that they are going to write a 200230 word essay about How travelling and holidays
today are different to travelling and holidays in the past. They first need to plan in pairs what makes
a good essay of 200230 words. Give them five minutes to think about what makes a good essay,
then, in open-class, elicit their ideas and write up a short checklist on the board. This might include,
for example, how many words they will have in the introduction, what the introduction will say,
how many paragraphs and that each paragraph will have a main focus, and what might go in the
conclusion. Tell them that when they are writing their essay, they need to refer to the checklist.
10. Tell the students that in the exam they will have 40 minutes to plan and write the whole essay. In
class, give the learners 20 minutes to write the first half of their essay. Tell them to use their own
words and that they cannot copy lines from the paragraphs. (See task C on the worksheet.)
11. After 20 minutes, get each pair to exchange what they have written and try to find three grammatical
or spelling errors. At the end of this time, ask some learners for examples of errors and how to
correct them. Try to choose common errors. Put the errors and the corrections on the board.

Extension activity
The students who are more advanced can complete more of the essay in class.

Further support activity


Write example sentences on the board, using the lexical/grammatical phrases from the worksheet.

Homework
Tell the class to use 20 minutes at home to complete the essay.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Student worksheet: Travel in the past and now


Task A
Read the following questions, then find the answers in the texts below. Check your answers with
your partner.
1. Give some reasons why The Grand was considered such a special building in its day.
2. How do you imagine people spent their time at The Grand and in the town of Folkestone in the
early 1900s?

Text A
The Grand hotel the building, erected in 1899
World first The builder, Daniel Baker, was in the forefront of innovative design; he had already
developed the use of cavity wall ties, and went one better with The Grand waterproof cavity wall
insulation. He used a steel frame one of the first to give the large clear spans to the enormous
main reception rooms, and said to be a world first infilled it with reinforced concrete. And he
used suspended ceilings for improved soundproofing.

Text B

Dear Cousin Patience,


We thought you might like to know something about our stay in Folkestone.
Weve discovered The Grand hotel, which is apparently the place to be and be seen
in the town. The King is a frequent visitor here and the locals wander along
the cliff top in front of the glassed fronted windows to catch a glimpse of him
and his friends. And guess what because theyre all heavily bearded, its been
likened to looking at monkeys in a cage and everyone here calls it The Monkey
House!!! We thought it odd but amusing. More snippets from our stay soon.
Yours truly, Cousin James
Text C
Interesting bits of history The Grand hotel, Folkestone.
The famous crime writer, Agatha Christie, often stayed and actors made their debut on
the stage there as well.
A telephone box, said to be a world first, was installed outside the building in 1903.
During the First World War, it was used as a military hospital.
Refrigeration, used to transport meat by sea in the 1890s, was another new invention
introduced to The Grand.
In 1909 the King opened the first sprung dance floor in Europe and a medal was struck
to commemorate the event. He danced with the Queen on it.
Grand chefs came to The Grand from Londons most prestigious hotels

Text D

1907 Diary
June 21st. Been accommodated in the Gentlemans Residence at The Grand for a week now. Plan soon
to relocate to France - the packet across the channel first, then steam train to Paris.
June 22nd. Last night watched the new silent moving picture show at the Royal Pavilion. Extraordinary!
June 23rd. Spent the day on the promenade above the sea. Full of ladies parading up and down with
brightly coloured parasols - keeping out of the sun, no doubt.
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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Grammar and vocabulary to help with your writing


Task B
(Add your own ideas in the gaps)
How do we express past habits?
People would always.
People used to
People plus past simple

Which words do we need when we talk about holidays?


budget airlines

travellers

ferries

to relax

package holidays

to sight-see

bargains

to take in the scenery

tour guides

sun-bathe

holidaymakers

cruise

Which words do we need when we compare then and now?


Many years ago

on the other hand

a century ago

whereas

nowadays

while

these days
on the contrary

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Task C
Reading into writing
Use the information from the four texts and your own ideas to write a short essay. The topic of your
essay is How travelling and holidays today are different to travelling and holidays in the past.
Plan your essay before you start writing. Think about what you want to include and make some
notes to help you below.
Planning:

Now write your essay of 200230 words. Try to use your own words as far as possible dont just copy
sentences from the reading texts.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Answer key
Task A
Question 1
The building had many new features: waterproof insulation of the walls, sound-proofing, huge, wide
rooms and big windows with no supporting column in the middle of the room, it included refrigeration,
a sprung (able to move up and down) dance floor, there was a telephone box outside, famous people
and royalty lived and stayed there.

Question 2
Walking along the top of the cliff, looking out at the sea, watching famous people or royalty, taking a
trip to France on the packet, going to the silent movies, eating excellent meals.

Task C Model answer


How travelling and holidays today are different to travelling and holidays in the past
The way people travel and holidays, in general, have changed a lot over the past few centuries. This
essay will start by showing how travelling and then holidays are different today compared with the past.
Today when people go away on holiday, they typically take a plane, go by car, or less frequently take a
train. Flying has become a very popular mode of transport because it is considered a relatively cheap
way of travelling. Budget airlines offer bargain journeys which are very often too difficult to resist. A
few centuries ago, however, planes were less commonly used as they were much more expensive. As a
result, people travelled by car or train. This meant that journey times were longer and people travelled
less distance than today.
Holidays have changed a lot. As soon as people arrive at their destination, they share their location
with their friends on social media sites. Everyone knows what they are doing, where they are and what
the hotel looks like. Many years ago, however, people rarely spoke to their family or friends when they
were away and people sent post cards to tell relatives what they had done and to show them what the
beach looked like.
It is clear that there have been many changes over the past few centuries and that in the future there
will be many more.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Task 4 Extended writing: Writing about changes in popular


entertainment
Level: ISE III
Focus: Task 4 Extended writing
Aims: To read for specific information and to write approximately 200 words on a topic
Objectives: To read a short text and talk about entertainment in the past and entertainment now,
to focus on expressions useful for the writing task, to write approximately 200 words and to
proofread for errors
Skill: Skimming and scanning, expressing opinions and evaluating
Topic: Popular entertainment
Language functions: Expressing and expanding ideas and opinions, developing and justifying
an argument
Lexis: Entertainment
Materials needed: One worksheet per student, one picture of Shakespeare and one picture of
Shakespeares Globe Theatre
Timing: 60 minutes

Procedure
Preparation
1. Print one student worksheet per student.
2. Print one picture or two pictures of Shakespeare and Shakespeares Globe Theatre.

In class
1. Tell the class that in todays lesson, they are going to read two short texts, talk about texts they have
read and then write a short essay. This is to practise the writing part of the ISE III exam. In the exam,
they will have 40 minutes to write one essay.
2. Tell students that in todays lesson they are going to be talking about popular entertainment.
Introduce the topic by pointing to the picture of Shakespeare and asking if anyone knows who he is.
Elicit or tell the class that it is Shakespeare, who wrote many great plays, for example Romeo and
Juliet. Point to the picture of the Globe Theatre and elicit/tell the class that this was the theatre
where Shakespeares plays were performed in the early 1600s in England.
3. Write the words buildings, advertising, the cost of seats and men and women who perform
in the theatre or cinema on the board. Ask the class to think about how going to the Globe was
different from going to the theatre or cinema today. Ask students to brainstorm their answers and
put some ideas on the board. Then put the students in pairs and label each student either A or B.
Give out the student worksheet.
4. Tell the A students to read text A and tell the B students to read text B. Tell them they need to read
their texts to find out about public entertainment in the 1600s and if the ideas on the board are
right. Give the class two minutes to read their texts and five minutes to discuss in pairs about how
popular entertainment today is different to going to the theatre in Shakespeares time.
5. Get some more open-class feedback on the differences in entertainment, for example, usually
buildings have roofs and everyone who pays generally has a seat, there is not an area for poor
people, there are fire regulations for buildings and props, advertising for entertainment is usually
in the newspaper or online, both men and women take equal part in entertainment, governments
do not usually close down theatres.
6. Ask each pair to make a list of other kinds of public entertainment that they have in their country
now, for example, football matches, sports events, Formula 1 racing, music festivals. Get feedback in
open-class and write some different kinds of entertainment on the board. Make the point that there
was little choice of popular entertainment in the 1600s.
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ISE III Reading & Writing exam


7. Tell the class they are going to write an essay: Popular entertainment nowadays is very different
to going to the theatre 100s of years ago. Do you agree? Write the title on the board.
8. Ask the students working in pairs to look at the Language focus box on the worksheet. Ask the
learners to talk together about which phrases have similar meanings and when they could use the
phrases. Make sure everyone knows the meaning of all the phrases. Give some of your own examples
of how to use the phrases in the context. For example, In my view, we are lucky to have so much
choice in entertainment nowadays, Entertainment today is more varied, Going to the theatre was
less comfortable for some people, If a building catches fire now, the fire will be put out quickly,
Years ago men dressed as women on stage, whereas now both men and women act, sing and perform
on stage. Ask the class which other words from the boxes they could use in your examples.
9. Get the class to give you some examples of their own about entertainment using the phrases in
the box. Write some of the examples on the board.
10. Tell the students they have five minutes to plan, in pairs, how many paragraphs they think the
200230 word essay should have and what each paragraph should include. Get feedback in
open-class and put suggestions on the board.
For example:
Introduction (40 words approximately) which explains if the student agrees or not
Main body paragraph 1 (50 words approximately) about entertainment in the past and how it
was different
Main body paragraph 2 (100 words approximately) about types of entertainment today and how
it is different
Conclusion (40 words approximately) which summarises what the student has written and
answers the essay question
11. Give the students 20 minutes to plan and write their essay. After 20 minutes, ask the students to
stop writing and check their work. When they check their work they should look out for the following
(write up on the board):
Subject verb agreements
Used correct tense?
Spelling mistakes
Used the correct expressions?
Used three items from the Language focus boxes?
12. Give the students five minutes to speak to their partner about their essays and to see if their
partner can help them correct any language/grammatical problems.

Extension activity
The students who are more advanced can complete all of their essay in class. (There is a further essay,
item 4 on the student worksheet, which these students could also complete at home.)

Further support activity


Make sure that all the ideas and examples using the phrases are clearly written on the board, so that
the learners who are finding the task difficult can use these prompts in their essays. These learners
can start their essays with the introductory paragraph, number 3 on the student worksheet. That way
they only need to write three paragraphs for their essay.

Homework
Tell the class to write the answer to a new essay title: Communication between people is easier today
than it was 100 years ago. Do you agree? (See number 4 on the student worksheet).

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Student worksheet: Writing about changes in popular entertainment


1. Reading
Work in pairs. One student reads Text A and one student reads Text B. After you read, tell your partner
how entertainment at the theatre in Shakespeares time was different to entertainment in your
country now. Talk about the buildings, advertising, price/type of seats, women and men in the world
of entertainment, and what different kinds of entertainment there is in your country now.

Text A
What became William Shakespeares famous Globe Theatre, the most famous theatre in England, was
built in 1599 alongside the River Thames, which runs through London. The Globe was built of recycled
wood from another theatre and as a large, round mainly open-air theatre, with just a small roof that
only covered the area where people sat. There were three storeys of seating and the theatre could
hold up to 3,000 people in the audience. By the bottom of the stage there was an area called the pit
and this is where poor people paid just a penny to stand and watch a performance of a play, sometimes
in the rain. Some of the stage extended out between these people in the pit so they were surrounded
by the acting.
The first Globe Theatre burnt down in 1613 when one of the props being used in a play set fire to the
theatres thatched roof. The whole theatre took less than two hours to burn down completely.

Text B
One very unusual fact about theatres at this time in England was that the theatre used to put different
coloured flags outside the theatre each time there was a performance. That way the public knew what
kind of play was going to be shown that day. There was a red flag for a history play, a white flag for a
comedy and black for a tragedy. Also, at the entrance to the Globe there was an inscription in Latin
which said The whole world is a playhouse. And apart from the flags advertising different kinds
of plays, another different feature of a theatre at this time in history was the fact that there were no
actresses at the Globe Theatre, or in fact at any other theatre in the country. The female roles in the
plays were all taken by young boys because theatres at that time were not considered appropriate
places for women to work.
In 1642 all the theatres in England were closed down by Parliament and no plays were allowed to be
put on at the Globe. This meant that people had almost no popular entertainment, as there were few
alternatives to the theatre.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

2. Language focus
Look at the following phrases. Work with your partner and decide which phrases you want to use in
your essay.

Giving opinions
In my opinion In my view As far as Im concerned From my point of view I think that

Evaluating
Its less/more likely/probable that
It is much more effective/costly/varied/comfortable than
Todayhas been improved in terms of
If sentences expressing probability, for example: If someone wants to go to a play nowadays they
will probably look online or in the newspaper to see what plays are on.
Used to and be used to + ing, for example: Poor people used to stand in the rain. Were used to
sitting in comfortable seats nowadays.

Comparing
Whereas On the other hand On the contrary

3. Possible introductory paragraph:


Hundreds of years ago there was not much entertainment for people. Now we have many things that
we can do in the evenings and at weekends. I agree it is very different. I will explain my reasons.

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

4. Extra essay title:


Communication between people is much easier today than it was 100 years ago. Do you agree?
Write an essay of 200230 words about the topic.

Plan the paragraphs here:


Planning:

Now write your essay on the lines below:

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

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ISE III Reading & Writing exam

Answer key model answer for essay


Popular entertainment nowadays is very different to going to the theatre 100s of
years ago. Do you agree?
Hundreds of years ago there was not much entertainment for people. Now we have many things that
we can do in the evenings and at weekends. I agree it is very different. I will explain my reasons.
Entertainment in the past was very different. Firstly, the theatre was the most popular form of
entertainment. Theatres could only hold up to 3,000 people and spectators often sat outside in the
rain. The range of plays the theatres put on where limited to comedies, historic incidents or tragedies.
The vast majority of the actors in the plays were men.
In todays society, we have a wide range of entertainment at home and away. For example, people can
go to the cinema, the theatre or to a concert. The capacity of these events ranges from 20 to 15,000
people and whereas cinemas and theatres are indoors, concerts can be outside and people can pay
more or less money according to where they are sitting/standing. If we dont want to go out, we can
spend our time watching television, or playing computer games. The types of programmes and films
are endless. Some of the most popular in todays society are documentaries, reality television shows
and series.
This essay has shown how entertainment has changed over the past 100 years. In my opinion, although
many changes have occurred, entertainment will continue to change in the future.

36

ISE III Speaking


& Listening exam

37

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Overview of the ISE Speaking & Listening exam


Trinitys ISE Speaking & Listening exam tests speaking and listening skills through an integrated approach,
reflecting the way the two skills interact in the real world. The ISE Speaking & Listening exam is currently
offered at four levels of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) from A2 to C1. The
purpose of the exam is to assess candidates English language skills in speaking and listening in a context
which reflects their real world activities and their purpose for learning English.
The integrated speaking and listening tasks reflect the kind of activities a student will do in the
school or college context. Additionally, the recordings used in the Independent listening task reflect
the way that students find, select and report relevant and appropriate information in an educational
or academic context.

Who is ISE Speaking & Listening for?


The intended candidate is a young person or adult, typically at secondary school or college who is
using English as a second or foreign language as part of their studies in order to develop their skills
and improve their knowledge of a range of subject areas. The typical ISE candidate is aged between
11 and 19, but may be older.
The candidate, at the lower levels of the exam (ISE Foundation and ISE I), would generally be a young
person or adult in school or college who would be taking ISE as part of their preparation for entrance
into university or as evidence to progress to a higher level of English study within their mainstream
or English language school. At the higher levels of the exam (ISE II and ISE III) the candidates are
young people or adults preparing for further education where they are required to prove their English
language proficiency levels within an educational context.

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Introduction to ISE Speaking & Listening tasks


The Speaking & Listening exam consists of several tasks and increases in length as the level increases.
The table below shows the progression across the levels.
ISE Foundation ISE I

ISE II

ISE III

CEFR level

A2

B1

B2

C1

Time

13 minutes

14 minutes

20 minutes

25 minutes

Topic task

4 minutes

4 minutes

4 minutes

8 minutes

Collaborative task

4 minutes

4 minutes

Conversation task

2 minutes

2 minutes

2 minutes

3 minutes

Independent listening task

6 minutes

7 minutes

8 minutes

8 minutes

1 minute

2 minutes

2 minutes

Examiner administration time 1 minute

The Topic task (ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II, ISE III)
What is the Topic task?
Before the exam, the candidate prepares a topic of his or her own choice and in the exam, and this
topic is used as a basis for a discussion.
What language skills can the candidate demonstrate in the Topic task?
The Topic task provides the candidate with the opportunity to:

talk about a topic which is of personal interest or relevance to them and which they feel confident about
have a degree of autonomy and control over this task
show they can link sentences together to talk about a subject at some length
demonstrate the language functions of the level
show that they can engage in a one-to-one, unscripted discussion with an expert speaker of English
demonstrate that they can understand and respond appropriately to examiner questions and points.

Can the candidate bring notes with them?


In the ISE Foundation and ISE I exams, candidates are required to complete a topic form which they give
to the examiner at the beginning of the exam. The topic form contains notes that helps to support the
candidate in their preparation for the exam and also in their discussion of the topic with the examiner,
It is important to tell the candidate that the examiner will choose the sequence in which the points on
the topic form are discussed, not the candidate. The topic form is also used by the examiner to ask
questions of the candidate. This encourages spontaneous conversation and discourages recitation by
the candidate.
In the ISE II exam, candidates do not need to complete a topic form but they are encouraged to bring
notes or mind maps with them to the exam.
In the ISE III exam, the candidate must prepare a formal handout to accompany their formal topic
presentation. They must give the handout to the examiner.
Level

Support

ISE Foundation

Topic form with four points

ISE I

Topic form with four points

ISE II

Candidate may use notes or a mind map

ISE III

Formal handout must accompany presentation

For example topic forms see Appendix 1.

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

The Collaborative task (ISE II and ISE III only)


What happens in the Collaborative task?
The examiner reads the candidate a prompt. The candidate responds to the prompt by starting,
leading and maintaining the interaction. For example, the candidate can ask questions to find out
further information, respond to information and comments from the examiner, demonstrate skills in
turn-taking in a conversation, etc. It is essential for the candidate to interact and collaborate with the
examiner. The candidate should not wait for the examiner to lead the conversation and monologues
from the candidate will receive a low mark.
What is the examiners prompt?
The prompt presents a dilemma, some circumstances, or an opinion. The candidate then needs to
take the initiative to find out more about the background of the examiners circumstances or position
and engage the examiner in a sustained discussion about the his/her circumstances or views. All of
the examiners prompts are prepared in advance by Trinity. Examiners are all trained to add their own
standardised backstory to the prompt in order to personalise it and support the interaction. By asking
the examiner for further information in the Collaborative task, the candidate finds out more about the
examiners backstory and the prompt.
What language skills can the candidate demonstrate in the Collaborative task?
The task provides the opportunity for the candidate to demonstrate his or her ability to take control
through the use of questioning techniques and language functions like requesting information, getting
clarification and asking for further detail. The Collaborative task gives the candidate the opportunity to
show that they can initiate turns in the conversation and control the direction of the interaction. This
task requires an authentic exchange of information and opinions, with the language functions listed at
each grade arising naturally out of the task.
There is no Collaborative task at ISE Foundation or ISE I.

The Conversation task (ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II, ISE III)
What is the Conversation task?
The Conversation task is a meaningful and authentic exchange of information, ideas and opinions. It
is not a formal question and answer interview. In this task, the examiner selects one subject area for
discussion with the candidate.
What are the possible subjects for discussion?
The subject areas have been carefully selected to offer a progression through the levels from the
concrete subjects at ISE Foundation to the abstract at ISE III. The list of subject areas is on page 44.
What about the interaction in the Conversation task?
The examiner will ask some questions, but at each ISE level, the candidate is expected to take more
responsibility for initiating and maintaining the conversation. The candidate is also expected to ask the
examiner questions in order to develop the interaction. These questions should arise naturally out of
the conversation.

The Independent listening task


What is the Independent listening task?
Listening skills are tested in an integrated way together with speaking skills in the Topic task,
Collaborative task and Conversation task. The Independent listening task is different. In this task, the
candidate has the opportunity to demonstrate the kind of listening skills that are required in lectures
and lessons, for example. In this Independent listening task, the candidate listens to recordings and
responds to questions. The candidate then gives written responses and also answers questions in
conversation with the examiner, depending on the level.
What is the procedure for the Independent listening task?
The examiner plays one or two recordings to the candidate, and the candidate writes the answers to
some questions on a worksheet, or they respond to prompts from the examiner about what they have
heard. The candidate listens to the same recording(s) twice.
While the candidate is listening to the recordings, they are encouraged to take notes to support their
listening and study skills. However, the candidates notes are not assessed as part of the exam.
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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Glossary of speaking aims for ISE III


Communicative
effectiveness

Responding appropriately to interaction


Initiating and maintaining conversation

Interactive listening

Showing understanding of other speakers


Following the speech of others

Language control

Using a range of grammar and vocabulary


Using grammar and vocabulary accurately
Avoiding making errors which effect the understanding of the listener

Delivery

Using clear and understandable pronunciation


Using stress and intonation

Glossary of listening skills for ISE III


Intensive listening
in detail to gather as
much information as
possible

Understanding specific, factual information at the word and/or phrase level


Listening for explicitly stated ideas and information
Listening for ideas and information which are not explicitly stated

Intensive listening
for detailed
understanding

Listening to understand all or most of the information the recording


provides
Identifying finer points of detail including attitudes and implied as well as
stated opinions

Extensive listening
for gist, for main
ideas and for global
understanding

Listening to get the topic and main ideas of the recording

Deducing meaning

Guessing the meaning of unknown utterances, phrases and words from


their context.
Inferring meaning, eg the speakers attitude, line of argument, mood
and intentions

Inferring attitude,
intentions,
viewpoints and
implications

Identifying which information is factual and which information is opinion

Identifying the
difference between
main and subsidiary
points, supporting
examples or details;
Identifying the
difference between
facts and opinions

Identifying which information is key information, and which information


is a supporting example or detail
Identifying which information is the main point and which information is
an example, or details

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Candidate profile
A candidate who successfully passes ISE III can:

Speaking
express him/herself fluently and spontaneously, almost effortlessly
has a good command of a broad lexical repertoire allowing gaps to be readily overcome with
circumlocutions there is little obvious searching for expressions or avoidance strategies and only
a conceptually difficult subject hinders a natural, smooth flow of language
use language flexibly and effectively for social purposes, including emotional, allusive and joking usage
argue a formal position convincingly, responding to questions and comments and answering
complex lines of counter argument fluently, spontaneously and appropriately
give clear, detailed descriptions and presentations on complex subjects, integrating sub themes,
developing particular points and rounding off with an appropriate conclusion
give clear, detailed descriptions of complex subjects
give elaborate descriptions and narratives, integrating sub themes, developing particular points and
rounding off with an appropriate conclusion.
give a clear, well-structured presentation of a complex subject, expanding and supporting points of
view at some length with subsidiary points, reasons and relevant examples
select a suitable phrase from a readily available range of discourse functions to preface his/her
remarks appropriately in order to get the floor, or to gain time and keep the floor whilst thinking
produce clear, smoothly flowing, well-structured speech, showing controlled use of organisational
patterns, connectors and cohesive devices
qualify opinions and statements precisely in relation to degrees of, for example, certainty/
uncertainty, belief/doubt, likelihood etc
express him/herself fluently and spontaneously, almost effortlessly only a conceptually difficult
subject hinders a natural, smooth flow of language

Listening
understand enough to follow extended speech on abstract and complex topics beyond his/her own
field, though he/she may need to confirm occasional details, especially if the accent is unfamiliar
recognise a wide range of idiomatic expressions and colloquialisms, appreciating register shifts
follow extended speech even when it is not clearly structured and when relationships are only
implied and not signalled explicitly
follow most lectures, discussions and debates with relative ease
understand a wide range of recorded and broadcast audio material, including some non-standard
usage, and identify finer points of detail including implicit attitudes and relationships between speakers
understand in detail speech on abstract and complex topics of a specialist nature beyond his/
her own field, though he/she may need to confirm occasional details, especially if the accent is
unfamiliar
use contextual, grammatical and lexical cues to infer attitude, mood and intentions and anticipate
what will come next
These speaking and listening profiles are based on the level Proficient User, C1, of the Council of
Europes Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). The rating scales and language functions
of ISE III have been linked to the CEFR level C1.

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Task specifications for ISE III Speaking & Listening


Topic task
Task type and format

The Topic task is an integrated speaking and listening task. The candidate
prepares a topic and delivers first a formal presentation of that topic using
visual aids and a handout for the examiner.
After the presentation, the candidate and the examiner engage in a
discussion about issues and points arising from the presentation.

Timing

4 minutes for presentation


4 minutes for discussion

Task focus and


language functions

The candidate is expected in this task and throughout the speaking exam
to show their ability to use the language functions of the level. These
functions are:
initiating and maintaining the conversation
developing and justifying an argument
evaluating opinions, past actions/course of events and different
statements
speculating
hypothesising
staging
summarising
negotiating meaning
indicating understanding of points made by the examine
establishing common ground

Examiner role

The examiner makes notes during the presentation of ideas, points or


issues to discuss after the presentation is finished.
During the discussion, the examiner uses questions to elicit the language
functions of the level.

Collaborative task
Task type and
format

The Collaborative task is an integrated speaking and listening task. The examiner
reads a prompt which creates an information gap. The prompt may express a
dilemma or opinion. The candidate needs to ask the examiner questions to find
out more information and keep the conversation going.

Timing

4 minutes

Task focus

The candidate is expected in this task and throughout the speaking exam to show
their ability to use the language functions of the level. These functions are:
developing and justifying an argument
evaluating opinions, past actions/course of events and different statements
speculating
hypothesising
staging
summarising
negotiating meaning
indicating understanding of points made by the examiner
establishing common ground

Examiner role

The examiner reads a prompt containing an opinion or dilemma. The examiner also
has two alternative back stories which contain the background information that
the candidate is expected to find out through the course of the conversation. The
examiner is expected to respond naturally to the candidates questioning and to
encourage them to keep the conversation going. The examiner is not expected to give
away too much information in one turn, or to unnaturally restrict information.
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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Conversation task

44

Task type and format

The Conversation task is an integrated speaking and listening task.


The examiner selects one conversation topic from a list and asks the
candidate questions to start a conversation about the topic.

Timing

3 minutes

Task focus and language


functions

The candidate is expected in this task and throughout the speaking


exam to show their ability to use the language functions of the level.
These functions are:
developing and justifying an argument
evaluating opinions, past actions/course of events and different
statements
speculating
hypothesising
staging
summarising
negotiating meaning
indicating understanding of points made by the examiner
establishing common ground)

Examiner role

The examiner uses the list of subject areas and their own test plans to
ask questions and elicit the target language functions of the level

Subject areas for


conversation

Assessment

This task is assessed in conjunction with the Topic task, in four categories:
Communicative effectiveness
Interactive listening
Language control
Delivery

Independence
Ambitions
Stereotypes
Role models
Competitiveness
Young peoples rights
The media
Advertising
Lifestyles
The arts
The rights of the individual
Economic issues

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Independent listening task


Task

Candidates listen twice to a recording. They listen once and report the gist of
what they have heard. They listen a second time and report the detail. They are
encouraged to take notes during the second listen only.
The recording is approximately 2 minutes and 45 seconds long.

Total task time

8 minutes

Task focus

Candidates show that they are able to place information in a wider context.
Clearly distinguish main and subordinate points and recognise the speakers line
of argument. Inferring information and links between points of information that
are not expressed explicitly. Interpreting speakers attitude. Inferring meaning of
unfamiliar words.

Examiner role

The examiner plays the recordings and reads an instructional rubric including a
gist question and a more detailed question.

Assessment

This task is subjectively scored using a rating scale, which means that the
examiner decides the score. The examiner considers how many facts are reported
correctly and whether the candidate answered immediately or was hesitant.

Assessment

This task is subjectively scored using a rating scale, which means that the
examiner decides the score. The examiner considers how many facts are
reported correctly, and also considers whether the candidate answered
immediately or was hesitant.

For text of a sample ISE Speaking & Listening exam, please see Appendix 2. You can also view sample
exams on the Trinity website at www.trinitycollege.com/ISE

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Preparation activities for ISE III Speaking & Listening


Topic task ISE III topic presentation structure
Teacher notes
Level: ISE III
Focus: Topic presentation and discussion
Aims: To ensure students choose a discursive topic for the ISE III speaking exam and to
familiarise students with the structure of a formal presentation
Objectives: Students consider the topic they would like to develop in the topic presentation and
give an outline of the structure and content
Topic: Students own choice
Language functions: Developing and justifying an argument, expressing and expanding ideas and
opinions, summarising, evaluating options, past actions/course of events, different standpoints
Grammar: Mixed conditionals, should/must/might/could + perfect infinitive, correct verb patterns
after wish and hope
Lexis: Vocabulary related to topics chosen and signposting expressions
Materials needed: Whiteboard, paper and pens and student worksheet
Timing: 90 minutes

Procedure
Preparation
1. Print or copy a student worksheet for each student.
2. Consider whether the topics in step 2 are culturally appropriate, and substitute them with others
where necessary.
3. Write the topics in step 2 below on the board before the start of the lesson, if possible.

In class
1. Tell students that the first part of the ISE III speaking exam is a four minute formal topic
presentation. Explain that the presentation must be discursive in nature; that is to say it must
include reasoning and argument, and not be purely factual.
2. Write the following potential topics on the board (substitute any that are not culturally appropriate
with topics of your choice):
1a. Recent developments in medical research
1b. The use of animals in medical research
2a. Christmas traditions
2b. The true meaning of Christmas
3a. My favourite TV show: X Factor
3b. The effect of TV talent shows on the music business
4a. The history of rap music
4b. Misogyny in rap music
5a. My favourite film: A Clockwork Orange
5b. Violence in films
3. Ask students to discuss in pairs which one in each pair is more appropriate and why.
Answer: The bs are more appropriate in each case as they have the potential to be discursive
whereas the as are likely to be purely factual.
4. Tell students they are going to plan a presentation on the first topic, The use of animals in medical
research in pairs. Give each student a student worksheet. Give them 15 minutes to carry out task 1
in pairs.
5. Elicit answers from the class and write on the board.

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam


Model answer Task 1
Introduction
Topic: The use of animals in medical research
Provide a clear indication of your position.
Against experiments on animals.
Present your first argument
Cause pain and suffering to animals.
Present your second argument
Animals and humans may respond to tests differently.
Present your third argument
Tests can be done using modern technology instead of animals.
Indicate that there is another side to this argument, with some idea of the points likely to be
made for the view(s) which are opposite to your own.
Drugs have been successfully tested on animals in the past.
It is worth causing some pain to animals to save human lives.
Reiterate your position and conclude.
Animal testing necessary in past, but now other methods need to be developed.
6. Tell students they are going to think about what linking expressions they could use to introduce each
section. Direct them to task 2 on the worksheet and check they understand the instructions. Give
them five minutes to carry out task 2 in pairs. Then go over the answers as a class.

Model answer Task 2


Introduction
In this presentation Im going to talk about
Ive chosen to talk about
Provide a clear indication of your position.
In my opinion
Personally, I believe that
Present your first argument.
Firstly
Ill begin by talking about
Present your second argument.
Secondly
Furthermore/ In addition
Present your third argument.
Thirdly
Furthermore/ In addition
Indicate that there is another side to this argument, with some idea of the points likely to be
made for the view(s) which are opposite to your own.
On the other hand
Nonetheless
Reiterate your position and conclude.
In conclusion
To sum up
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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam


7. Tell the students that they are going to plan a presentation individually. Each student chooses one of
the other b topics or another discursive topic that interests them. Explain that they will need to find
supporting evidence for each point. Ask them to complete task 2, and allow them to use the internet
to research the topic further if possible. Set a 40 minute time limit. Monitor and provide help where
necessary.
8. In pairs, students review each others notes and give feedback. Then give feedback to the whole
class on how the task went and any common issues.

Extension activity
Students who finish their plans more quickly can continue with task 2 on the worksheet by adding
more cohesive devices to each section.

Further support activity


Students finding the task difficult can be allowed to research their chosen topic further at home.

Homework
In the next lesson, students should practise their presentations in front of a partner. After the
presentation, the partner can ask questions as the examiner will in the real exam.

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Student worksheet: ISE III topic presentation structure


Task 1 Planning
Below is a suggested structure for a discursive topic presentation. Make brief notes on what you might
include in each section.
Introduction
Topic: The use of animals in medical research

Provide a clear indication of your position


Against experiments on animals.

Present your first argument

Present your second argument

Present your third argument

Indicate that there is another side to this argument, with some idea of the points likely to be
made for the view(s) which are opposite to your own

Reiterate your position and conclude

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Task 2 Discourse markers


Match the discourse markers to the section you would be most likely to use them in. Some may be
suitable for more than one section.

In addition
Thirdly
Furthermore
Ill begin by talking about
Secondly
On the other hand
To sum up
Ive chosen to talk about
In my opinion
In conclusion
Nonetheless
Firstly
In this presentation Im going to talk about
Personally, I believe that

Introduction

Provide a clear indication of your position

Present your first argument

Present your second argument

Present your third argument

Indicate that there is another side to this argument, with some idea of the points likely to be
made for the view(s) which are opposite to your own

Reiterate your position and conclude


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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Task 3 Planning your own topic


Choose another topic from the list on the board and make notes on what you would include in each section.

Introduction

Provide a clear indication of your position

Present your first argument, with supporting evidence

Present your second argument, with supporting evidence

Present your third argument, with supporting evidence

Indicate that there is another side to this argument, with some idea of the points likely to be
made for the view(s) which are opposite to your own

Reiterate your position and conclude

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Collaborative task: The internet A waste of time?


Level: ISE III
Focus: Collaborative task
Aims: To understand the collaborative task requirements at ISE lll, to practise particular language
functions such as defending/justifying an argument, challenging arguments and opinions,
expressing beliefs and summarising/paraphrasing information
Objectives: To make students aware of what is required in the collaborative task and for students
to role play the collaborative task at least twice.
Topic: The use of the internet
Language functions: Developing and justifying an argument, negotiating meaning, summarising
ideas and arguments
Grammar: Nothing specific as candidates at this level are expected to have a broad range of
complex structures
Lexis: Language related to the above functions, lexis connected to the use of the internet.
Materials needed: A number of board pens, one student worksheet per student
Timing: 90 minutes (could be divided into 2 x 45 minute lessons).

Preparation
Print or copy one student worksheet per student.

In class
1. Go into class and say the following controversial statement I think the internet is a total waste of
time and let students react, mentally noting what they say in response, receiving a response from
everyone (depending on the size of the class). This could take up to five minutes.
2. Now tell the students that in todays lesson they will be focusing on the Collaborative task in the
Speaking & Listening exam at ISE III level.
3. Ask students, in pairs or in groups of three, to ask each other if they know what they are supposed
to do in the Collaborative task, and what the language functions and requirements of ISE III are. Give
the students two to five minutes depending on their prior knowledge.
4. Ask students to report back, and then see how their answers compare with the reality. Give out one
student worksheet per student and direct the students to look at the ISE III language functions.
Alternatively, they could be projected onto the board It might be a good idea to point out that giving
advice is NOT a requirement at this level (it is for ISE II).
5. Now write the following functions as headings on the board with space for students to write under
each heading:
a) Defending/justifying an argument
b) Challenging arguments and opinions
c) Expressing beliefs
d) Summarising ideas and arguments
6. Depending on the size of the class, assign one of these headings to each group of students (could
be in pairs, or groups of three or four), and ask the students to think of expressions that fulfil the
function they have been given. Give the students five minutes to do this. Monitor and answer any
questions. Please note that there is a considerable degree of overlap and some expressions could fit
different functions.
7. Get one student from each group or pair to write their expressions on the board under the
appropriate heading. When they have all done this, invite students to comment on whether the
expressions fit the appropriate function or if they could apply to other functions too.

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam


8. At this point, ask the students to look at the points for and against the internet on the student
worksheet. Ask the students to discuss in pairs. While the students are completing this task, monitor
and answer any queries students may have. Then ask students to add any additional phrases that
they think are useful that they have previously written on the board onto the handout.
9. Model the pronunciation stress and intonation of a number of the key expressions.
10. The above activities will take approximately 45 minutes.
11. Now dictate the following prompt Many people have stated that the internet has been enormously
beneficial for society. I often wonder if that really is the case.
12. After students have checked what they have written down is correct, divide the class into two.
One half of the class makes a list of the benefits of the internet, the other half makes a list of the
problems connected with it (some ideas can be found on the student worksheet). Ask one student
from each group to write their ideas on the board. Do not invite comments on these ideas as this will
overlap into the next activity.
13. Now divide the class into groups of three and tell them one will be the examiner (E), one will be the
candidate (C), and one will be an observer (O). E will start by reading the prompt that was dictated in
stage 10, and C will respond. The objective of C will be to use some of the expressions that were on
the student worksheet and also the ones that were added by the students in stage 8.
O should do three things while E and C are speaking:
time the interaction for five minutes
count how many questions C asks
count how many expressions that were looked at earlier that both E and C use.
When they have finished, the O gives the C and E feedback. While the students are completing this
stage, monitor them, noting points for feedback later.
14. Get the students to swap their groups. This time ask the students to complete the same activity but
with different roles (eg if they were an O previously they can be either E or C). Repeat the activity.
15. Students could swap around again, so that everyone has had a chance to be an E, C and O. This can
be skipped if time is running short.
16. Give the students some feedback on how well the students completed this activity. Ask the
observers for their observations. Did C ask enough questions? Did C use enough of the required
functions? Did C use the expressions examined earlier in an appropriate way? Did C challenge E
enough, or did C just tend to agree with everything E said? How do you think C could improve his
or her performance?

Extension activity
Students can write more expressions and phrases that map to the functions listed on the student
worksheet. This could be continued for homework.
if time, students can consider the following prompt: Some people have stated that climate change has
been totally exaggerated. I think I tend to agree with this point of view. They then think of arguments
for and against this viewpoint.

Further support activity


Ask students finding the task difficult to concentrate on just a few of the most useful phrases and
pieces of functional language that they have seen in the student handouts, and which they think they
will use in future. Students compare the functional language they have chosen with each other. The
students can practise the intonation and stress of these pieces of language with each other.

Homework
Students could look at the Trinity website at the Interactive phase/Collaborative task for ISE III/GESE
Grade 11. They can make a note of useful expressions or strategies used by the candidate or examiner
to share with the class before they next practise the Collaborative task.

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Student worksheet: The internet A waste of time?


Below are the language functions required at ISE III.
Expressing abstract ideas
Expressing regrets, wishes and hopes
Expressing assumptions
Paraphrasing
Evaluating options
Hypothesising
Evaluating past actions and course of events
Developing an argument
Defending a point of view
Expressing beliefs
Expressing opinions tentatively
Summarising information, ideas and arguments
Deducing
Justifying an argument
Inferring
Expressing caution
Expressing empathy and sympathy
Challenging arguments and opinions
Evaluating different standpoints
Expressing reservations

Some useful functional language at ISE III


Defending/Justifying an argument

What I am trying to explain is


I see your point, but
Dont you think it might be
I probably agree with what youre saying, but in reality
I think you might be making a few assumptions there
I might be wrong but dont you think it might be

Challenging arguments and opinions

54

Why do you say that?


Surely it isnt so clear cut as that
I think its exaggerating the point to say that
Obviously not everyone would see it that way.
Are you not concerned about
Are you seriously telling me

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Expressing beliefs

I strongly believe
I am a firm believer in
What are your thoughts regarding
What are your beliefs on
You seem very definite on that point

Summarising/paraphrasing information

So in other words, what you are saying/I am saying is


Are you saying/suggesting that
Could you explain that in another way? Can you expand on that?
Essentially what are the main points to bear in mind
In a nutshell, my main point is
In just a few words can you summarise that for me?

Points for and against the internet

Arguments for the internet

Arguments against the internet

Can find out information at the touch of a few


buttons

People have become lazy to research things


in depth

Resource for research for homework/other


projects

Websites such as Wikipedia are often wrong


as anyone can edit it

No need to go to the library

Searches often bring up student essays and


opinions which are not authoritative (like books)

Social networks helping us to keep in touch


with old friends, or people far away
Helps reduce the amount of paper consumed
Anyone can use it as it is so simple
It has created many jobs in the IT world

It has divided the world into haves and have


nots (the rich world is further removed from
places which have poor internet connection)
It excludes the poor and elderly who may be
scared to use it
It is killing libraries (and jobs)

55

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Conversation task: Yes, but is it art?


Level: ISE III
Focus: Conversation task
Aims: To develop students active vocabulary when discussing different art forms and to expand
their knowledge of useful phrases used in conversation
Objectives: To justify an argument by stating what makes something art and to agree or disagree
with someones opinion on the topic of art forms
Topic: The arts
Language functions: Developing and justifying an argument, evaluating options,
past actions/course of events, different standpoints
Lexis: Art forms and phrases used to express opinions
Materials needed: Whiteboard, one student worksheet per student and pens
Timing: One hour

Procedure
Preparation
1. Print or copy one student worksheet per student.
2. Find images online or in a book of different pieces of art and print them out. Ensure you have one
set of pictures for every two students.

In class
1. Explain to the class that they will be doing an activity today in class that will help them to practise
for the Conversation task of the ISE III exam.
2. Tell the students that the topic of todays lesson is art. Write the following three questions on the
board and tell students to discuss the questions in pairs:
What makes something art?
Do you like art?
What are the most popular art forms in your country?
Monitor and assist if necessary. Carry out feedback as a group.
3. Write the following 10 art forms on the board: photography, computer games, painting, dance,
comic books, architecture, web design, music, literature, fashion design. Ask students to
discuss the meaning of the words in pairs. Carry out feedback as a group.
4. Give each student a copy of the worksheet and ask them to complete task A. Tell the students to
rank the art forms from 1 to 10 with 1 meaning the art form is really art and 10 meaning this is not
art at all. When students have finished, ask them to compare their top 10 in pairs and discuss the
differences. Carry out group feedback and elicit why something may/may not be a form of art.
5. Put students in pairs and tell each pair to choose one art form. Tell them to carry out task B. Ask the
students to write down three arguments on a piece of paper as to why the art form of their choice is
or is not art. Monitor and correct errors.
6. Tell students to pass their paper to the pair sitting on their right hand side and ask them to add one
argument for or against. Repeat this until each pair has added a comment on at least two different
art forms. Ask the students to return the papers back to the correct students.
7. Elicit from the students phrases used to express opinions, and phrases to express agreement and
disagreement and write them on the board. Ask students to look at the sentence starters in the
table under task C and tell them to add three more from the ones they have discussed. Drill the
sentence starters chorally and individually.

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ISE III Speaking & Listening exam


8. Ask students to carry out task C. Tell them they should have a discussion based on the arguments
on their new piece of paper. One student should play the role of the examiner and should start the
discussion with Lets talk about art. Do you think is /are a real form of art? The other student
should reply with one of the sentence starters. After three to four minutes, collect the papers and
redistribute them. Ask the students to repeat the task but now they should swap the examiner role.
Monitor and write the errors you hear on the board for later group error correction.
9. Have a whole class discussion on at least two of the art forms. Encourage students to use the
sentence starters.
10. Now draw the students attention to the errors that you have written up on the board. Ask the
students to discuss in pairs what is wrong with the sentences or phrases and to correct them.
Correct the errors as a group. Elicit the correct answer and the reason.
11. Tell the students that in the Conversation part of the ISE III exam they need to be able to develop
and justify an argument. They need to take initiative and they should use a range of phrases as
introduced in this lesson to manage the conversation. They can prepare for this by practising with
another student and alternating the examiner role. Tell them that they should repeat the task until
a wide range of phrases are used naturally.

Extension activity
Find images online or in a book of different pieces of art covering a wide range of genres. Suggestions:
Mona Lisa (L Da Vinci), The Persistence of Memory (S Dali), traditional Chinese painting, cave painting,
Fountain (M Duchamp), Guernica (P Picasso), The Night Watch (Rembrandt), Number 31 (J Pollock),
Campbells Soup Can (A Warhol), etc. Give each pair a set of pictures. Ask students to discuss, in pairs,
whether these are pieces of art or not.

Further support activity


Allow students to talk about the same art form when they change partners. This way they will repeat
their ideas.

Homework
Ask students to find a famous piece of art online or in a book and bring a printout or photocopy of
it to class. Ask the students to report back in the next class whether the piece of art they found is,
according to them, art or not.

57

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Student worksheet: Yes, but is it art?


Task A
Rank the art forms from 1 to 10.
1 = This art form is really art.
10 = This is not art at all.

Art forms

Rank #

photography
computer games
painting
dance
comic books
architecture
web design
music
literature
fashion design

Task B
Work with a partner. Choose one art form. Write down three reasons why the art form can be
considered art and three reasons why it is not art.

Arguments for

58

Arguments against

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Task C
Work with a partner. Student A plays the role of the examiner, student B is the candidate. Use the
question and the sentence starters below in your discussion.

Student A: Examiner
Lets talk about art. Do you think is / are a real form of art?

Student B: Candidate

I dont think

The way I see it is that

In my opinion,

I would say that

Yes, to a degree. Having


said that,

From my point of view,

Well, its not that clear-cut


To be honest, I dont think
because

Generally, I think is
considered art but in my
humble opinion

59

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Listening task: How to write a summary using


note-taking skills
Level: ISE III
Focus: Listening task
Aims: Listening for gist and listening for detailed information
Objectives: To identify the main ideas in a listening task, to develop summarising and
note-taking skills
Topic: The news
Language functions: Summarising
Grammar: Reported speech
Lexis: Language of the news, signposting words and expressions, eg firstly, to conclude
Materials needed: Board, pens, audio script/online connection to play clip from website and one
worksheet per student
Timing: 4560 minutes

Procedure
Preparation
1. Find a news report in English of two to three minutes.
2. Print or copy one worksheet per student
3. If its not possible to play the audio from the internet, pre-record the recording.

In class
1. Tell the students they are going to spend this lesson developing their summarising and notetaking skills in preparation for the ISE III listening task 1. This task involves students listening to
spoken English in the form of, for example, lectures, complex discussions, debates, podcasts, radio
programmes or documentaries, and then answering some questions, first for the gist, and then for
more detail using summarising techniques.
2. Ask the students what is meant by the term gist. Write some of their ideas on the board. For
example, explain that gist is the main focus of the discussion, the main idea.
3. Ask the students what they understand by a summary. Write some of their ideas on the board.
Explain that a summary is selecting the main points from all the information given, and then putting
them all together in a logical order.
4. Explain to the students that for the ISE III listening task, they will be given a worksheet with a
number of main points they have to listen out for (usually between five and seven), which will help
them to make notes during the listening. Inform the students that in todays lesson, they will also
practise this part of the test. Write What is a summary? in large letters on the board. Ask the
following questions in open-class (correct answers are in brackets):

Does a summary include background to the issue? (no)


Does a summary include small details? (no)
Does a summary include the students own views? (no)
Does a summary include data (eg 23% of homeowners..) (no)
Does a summary involve detailed explanations? (no)
Does a summary involve direct quotes? (no)

5. Warm-up discussion: Write the following on the board in large letters Summarise the talk in five
sentences. Explain that they will practice the skill of summarising today. Put the students into pairs
and give out one worksheet per student, asking them to discuss all of the questions in task 1. Give
the students approximately five to eight minutes to complete this task.
60

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam


6. Go through the answers to task 1 in open-class. Write up the answers, if necessary.
7. Explain to the students that they are now going to listen to a recording (either of you reading it
aloud, or a colleague reading it out, or online). The first time they are only listening for gist. Play or
read the recording.
8. Now ask the students to discuss with their partner what the gist of the talk was. Possible answers
include, we are not listening anymore, we are not listening properly, our listening skills are
becoming worse, listening skills need to be taught in schools.
9. Now explain to the students that they are going to listen for a second time, but this time they will be
making notes to enable them to give a summary of the talk. Ask them to make notes as they listen in
the boxes in task 2 on the student worksheet.
10. Play or read the recording for a second time.
11. Go through the notes the students have made in open-class, encouraging feedback from each group.
Decide as a class which of the main points should be included in a summary.
12. In pairs, tell students they are going to work together to build a summary of the listening task 3.
Write the following on the board to help the students focus on the main information:
What is the news? Why is it news?

A new challenge
Growing concerns over
New efforts to
New techniques to help
What does the speaker hope the outcome will be?

13. Listen to some pairs giving their summaries orally (the number will depend on class sizes etc but
shouldnt last more than 15 minutes). Give feedback and encourage other students to also give
feedback by asking them to score each pair from 110 as they hear it. Ask the students why the
summary with the highest mark scored so highly.

Extension activity
The more advanced students can practise retelling the talk which should involve giving as much
information about the talk as possible.

Further support activity


Students finding the task difficult can be asked to listen to the first part of the talk and the last part,
this will give them two main points, or they can be asked to listen to the middle part to get the gist.

Homework
Ask students to find another talk about something related to their homework that week and do the
same exercise.

61

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Student worksheet:
How to write a summary using note-taking skills
Task 1 Summarising
Discuss the following questions in pairs
1.

What makes a good summary?

2.

Which of the following might be included in a summary? Circle YES or NO next to each point:

Essential information YES / NO

Minor information YES / NO

Background information YES / NO
The main idea and why it is relevant

YES / NO


Long explanations YES / NO

Data YES / NO

Direct quotes YES / NO

A conclusion YES / NO

Your own views YES / NO
The views of people in the dialogue
3.

62

How should you decide what to include in the summary?

YES / NO

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Task 2 Listening
1. Listen to the recording for the first time and answer the following question:
What is the gist of what the speaker is talking about?

2. Now listen to the recording a second time and make notes on the key points.

Task 3
Make a summary of the key points made during the talk.

63

ISE III Speaking & Listening exam

Teacher notes (possible answers)


1. What is a good summary?
Selecting the main points from the information given, and then putting it all together logically. Use
these keywords to explain: general, essential, concise, connected, logical.
2. Which of the following might be included in a summary?
Essential information, the main idea and why its relevant, a conclusion.
3. How should you decide what to include?
Which points are mentioned, and then developed, with possible examples given. Also, sequencing
words and cohesive devices (signposting words) are a good indicator for when a main point is being
mentioned.
4. The gist?
The importance of listening skills, why they are in decline, and why they need to be improved so we can
all live in peace and harmony.

Task 2 model answer


We need to improve our listening skills as they are getting worse. We are able to distinguish sounds from
one another, for example, when our name is called in a crowded place. If we focus on listening to something
we have better results. The skill to listen is being lost in part, because of advanced recording technology so,
we can hear things again and again. In addition to this, the world is noisy so its tiring to listen.
We are also very busy therefore were becoming impatient and were becoming desensitised as all sorts of
media is thrown at us. Its vitally important that we listen to each other as listening creates understanding.
In order to improve our listening skills, the lecturer recommends: three minutes of silence per day,
focusing on hearing the different streams of sound wherever you are, focusing on everyday sounds
and making them special, for example, the sound of your tumble dryer. Finally, by practising all of these
techniques, you can improve your listening skills. He also suggests that you could ensure you appreciate
who is talking to you by making little noises like hmm, oh etc and asking your interlocutor questions.
We need to listen to each other to stay connected. We need to teach it in schools so that everyone
knows how to do it. It is possible to do this to create a world of connection, understanding and peace.

64

Audio script of TED talk 5 ways to listen better


Read out this tape script as naturally as you can (normal speed delivery, or record a colleague
reading it out and play it back in class).
We are losing our listening. We spend roughly 60 percent of our communication time listening, but
we're not very good at it. We retain just 25 percent of what we hear. Now not you, not this talk, but that
is generally true. Lets define listening as making meaning from sound. Its a mental process, and its a
process of extraction.
We use some pretty cool techniques to do this. One of them is pattern recognition. So in a cocktail
party like this, if I say, David, Sara, pay attention. Some of you just sat up. We recognize patterns to
distinguish noise from signal, and especially our name. Differencing is another technique we use. If I
left this pink noise on for more than a couple of minutes, you would literally cease to hear it. We listen
to differences, we discount sounds that remain the same.
And then there is a whole range of filters. These filters take us from all sound down to what we pay
attention to. Most people are entirely unconscious of these filters. But they actually create our reality
in a way, because they tell us what were paying attention to right now. Give you one example of that:
intention is very important in sound, in listening. When I married my wife, I promised her that I would
listen to her every day as if for the first time. Now thats something I fall short of on a daily basis. But
its a great intention to have in a relationship.
But thats not all. Sound places us in space and in time. If you close your eyes right now in this room,
youre aware of the size of the room from the reverberation and the bouncing of the sound off the
surfaces. And youre aware of how many people are around you because of the micro-noises youre
receiving. And sound places us in time as well, because sound always has time embedded in it. In fact,
I would suggest that our listening is the main way that we experience the flow of time from past to
future. So, Sonority is time and meaning a great quote.
I said at the beginning, we're losing our listening. Why did I say that? Well there are a lot of reasons
for this. First of all, we invented ways of recording first writing, then audio recording and now video
recording as well. The premium on accurate and careful listening has simply disappeared. Secondly, the
world is now so noisy, with this cacophony going on visually and auditorily, it's just hard to listen; it's
tiring to listen. Many people take refuge in headphones, but they turn big, public spaces like this, shared
soundscapes, into millions of tiny, little personal sound bubbles. In this scenario, nobodys listening to
anybody.
Were becoming impatient. We dont want oratory anymore, we want sound bites. And the art of
conversation is being replaced dangerously, I think by personal broadcasting. I don't know how
much listening there is in this conversation, which is sadly very common, especially in the UK. Were
becoming desensitized. Our media have to scream at us with these kinds of headlines in order to
get our attention. And that means its harder for us to pay attention to the quiet, the subtle, the
understated.
This is a serious problem that were losing our listening. This is not trivial. Because listening is our
access to understanding. Conscious listening always creates understanding. And only without conscious
listening can these things happen a world where we don't listen to each other at all, is a very scary
place indeed. So I'd like to share with you five simple exercises, tools you can take away with you, to
improve your own conscious listening. Would you like that?
Good.
The first one is silence. Just three minutes a day of silence is a wonderful exercise to reset your ears
and to recalibrate so that you can hear the quiet again. If you cant get absolute silence, go for quiet,
thats absolutely fine.
Second, I call this the mixer. So even if youre in a noisy environment like this and we all spend a lot
of time in places like this listen in the coffee bar to how many channels of sound can I hear? How
many individual channels in that mix am I listening to? You can do it in a beautiful place as well, like in a
lake. How many birds am I hearing? Where are they? Where are those ripples? Its a great exercise for
improving the quality of your listening.

65
65

Third, this exercise I call savoring, and this is a beautiful exercise. Its about enjoying mundane sounds.
This, for example, is my tumble dryer. Its a waltz. One, two, three. One, two, three. One, two, three. I love
it. Or just try this one on for size (the sound of a coffee grinder) Wow! So mundane sounds can be really
interesting if you pay attention. I call that the hidden choir. Its around us all the time.
The next exercise is probably the most important of all of these, if you just take one thing away. This
is listening positions the idea that you can move your listening position to whats appropriate to
what youre listening to. This is playing with those filters. Do you remember, I gave you those filters at
the beginning. Its starting to play with them as levers, to get conscious about them and to move to
different places. These are just some of the listening positions, or scales of listening positions, that you
can use. There are many. Have fun with that. Its very exciting.
And finally, an acronym. You can use this in listening, in communication. If youre in any one of those
roles and I think that probably is everybody who's listening to this talk the acronym is RASA, which
is the Sanskrit word for juice or essence. And RASA stands for Receive, which means pay attention to
the person; Appreciate, making little noises like hmm, oh, okay; Summarize, the word so is very
important in communication; and Ask, ask questions afterward.
Now sound is my passion, its my life. I wrote a whole book about it. So I live to listen. Thats too much
to ask from most people. But I believe that every human being needs to listen consciously in order to
live fully connected in space and in time to the physical world around us, connected in understanding
to each other, not to mention spiritually connected, because every spiritual path I know of has listening
and contemplation at its heart.
Thats why we need to teach listening in our schools as a skill. Why is it not taught? Its crazy. And if we
can teach listening in our schools, we can take our listening off that slippery slope to that dangerous,
scary world that I talked about and move it to a place where everybody is consciously listening all the
time or at least capable of doing it.
Now I don't know how to do that, but this is TED, and I think the TED community is capable of anything.
So I invite you to connect with me, connect with each other, take this mission out and lets get listening
taught in schools, and transform the world in one generation to a conscious listening world a world of
connection, a world of understanding and a world of peace.
Thank you for listening to me today.

Original source: www.ted.com/talks/julian_treasure_5_ways_to_listen_better

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Appendices

67

Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper


SAMPLE

ISE III

Integrated Skills in English III


Time allowed: 2 hours
This exam paper has four tasks. Complete all tasks.

Task 1 Long reading


As part of your studies you are going to read about languages. Read the following text and answer
the 15 questions on page 3.
Paragraph 1
The writer and Professor of Linguistics David Crystal relates the experience of a fellow linguist called
Bruce Connell, who was doing some research in West Africa in the 1990s when he discovered a
language that had never been studied before. The problem was that there was only one man left who
spoke it. Connell was too busy to investigate further, so resolved to return the following year. By the
time he got back, the man had died, and of course the language along with him. One day it existed, the
next day it was extinct.
Paragraph 2
In itself, this story is not all that surprising: languages have been dying out (and new ones emerging) for
as long as humans have been on the earth. More alarming is the current rate of language extinction.
Professor Crystal, who has written a book called Language Death as part of his campaign to raise
awareness of the problem, estimates that of approximately 6,000 languages in the world, around half
will disappear over the next 100 years. This means thats one language less every couple of weeks. As
for endangered languages, it has been estimated that there are nearly 500 with only one speaker left,
and over 3,000 with 10,000 speakers or fewer.
Paragraph 3
Does this matter? I confess that until I looked into it, I thought of this situation (if I thought about it
at all) as just natural evolution. Languages come and go according to whether they meet the needs
of the speakers, and of all the worlds problems, this is nowhere near the most pressing. Professor
Crystal, though, offers a number of reasons why we should care. Languages, he says, are interesting in
themselves and teach us about language and communication in general. They contain the culture and
history of those who speak them, and are a vital part of group identity. A further and more abstract
argument is that diversity is necessary for evolution, or even survival, just as much in cultural terms as
in biology. Speaking personally, I must say these arguments havent converted me into a campaigner
for endangered languages, but at least Im grateful that there are people like David Crystal doing their
best to keep the issue alive.
Paragraph 4
There are various reasons why languages die, including the obvious one of populations disappearing
as a result of natural disasters or war, but the most common one is a gradual cultural assimilation.
When one culture dominates another, there is pressure on people to adopt the dominant language.
What usually happens is that, after some time, most people begin to speak both languages. This phase,
however, tends to lead to a gradual decline in the dominated language as younger generations stop
speaking it. From then on, basic population changes take over as its surviving speakers become fewer
and fewer. Later generations may look back with regret and realise that something valuable has been
lost, but by then of course its too late.
Paragraph 5
So, if we accept that disappearing languages is an important problem, can anything be done?
Unsurprisingly, David Crystal is convinced that steps can be taken (and furthermore have been
successful in various places). He cites examples from around the world, including the revival of Welsh,
which was the result of deliberate policy decisions. Favourable conditions, however, must be in place,
not least of which is the desire and willingness of the community to save their language. In cases
where this doesnt exist, any efforts that are made will be doomed to failure. Beyond that, a threatened
language needs to have prestige, which requires that it should be given a place in the education system
and, in most cases, an agreed grammar and preferably a written form (if it doesnt already have one).
None of this is cheap. One estimate is that there would be an annual cost of 40,000 per language. But
when you compare that to the amount spent in other areas, perhaps its not so much after all.
page 2

68

This exam paper has four tasks. Complete all tasks.

SAM

SE III

asks.

Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

ISE III

SAMPLE

Questions 15 (one mark per question)


The text on page 2 has five paragraphs (15). Choose the best title for each paragraph from AF
below and write the letter (AF) on the lines below. There is one more title than you need.
1.

Paragraph 1

A Why disappearing languages is a big issue

2. Paragraph 2

B How a language becomes dominant

3. Paragraph 3

C How languages can be rescued


D A story of a lost language

4. Paragraph 4

E Rate of language extinction

5. Paragraph 5

F Typical process of language extinction

Questions 610 (one mark per question)


Choose the five statements from AH below that are TRUE according to the information given in
the text on page 2. Write the letters of the TRUE statements on the lines below (in any order).
6.

A The decline in world languages will slow down in the future.

7.

B The writer is now convinced that he should help to make people aware
of the issue.

8.

C People tend to give a language more respect if it is taught in schools.

9.

D Languages are always dying out and new ones are born.

10.

E Some languages are lost along with the people because of natural disasters.
F A researcher who returned to study a new language found there were
no speakers left.
G The writer used to think that language death was not a problem.
H Its thought that 3,000 languages will disappear in a century.

Questions 1115 (one mark per question)


Complete sentences 1115 with a word, phrase or number from the text (maximum three words).
Write the word, phrase or number on the lines below.
11. The writers view was that the survival of a language depends on if they
of people.
12. According to Prof. Crystal, the

of languages is

necessary for evolution and survival.


13. Typically, after a period of bilingualism, one language will suffer
.
14. Attempts to save a language are

without commitment

from the people who speak it.


15. A language will be easier to save if it can be

Turn over page

down.
page 3

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Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

ISE III

SAMPLE

Task 2 Multi-text reading


In this section there are four short texts for you to read and some questions for you to answer.
Questions 1620 (one mark per question)
Read questions 1620 first and then read texts A, B, C and D below the questions.
As you read each text, decide which text each question refers to. Choose one letter A, B, C or D
and write it on the lines below. You can use any letter more than once.
Which text would be most useful for someone who:
16. is thinking of getting involved in beekeeping?
17. has never seen inside a beehive before?
18. wants to understand the reasons why bees are in danger?
19. wants to learn more about the organisation of social insects?
20. is interested in myths and legends about bees?
Text A
The single queen lays up to
2,000 eggs a day.
Most of the bees in a
colony are workers.
They are females
who collect
nectar and pollen
from flowers, and
maintain and defend
the hive.

The role of the drone


is to mate with the
queen. They cant
sting, and when
winter comes,
they are driven out
by workers to starve
to death.

We rely on
pollination by
honeybees and other
species of bee for around
one third of the food we grow.

The waggledance
communicates the distance and
location of nectar to other bees.

Text B

The Great Bee Mystery


Beekeeper Jack Walsh opens the first hive and I look
inside. You can see the workers have gone, but the
queen and the honey are still there other bees would
normally steal that, but wont touch it in a CCD hive.
CCD, or Colony Collapse Disorder, has wiped
out over a third of the UKs hives, and some believe
up to 70% could be threatened. The phenomenon
involves the sudden abandonment of a hive, and is yet
to be explained, although, as Dr Karen Marsh at the
University of London told me, various theories are
being examined:
page 4

70

The chief suspect is the varroa mite, a tiny parasite


which sucks the bees blood and carries a number of
diseases. However, to stay healthy, bees also need a
varied diet, but nowadays many farms grow just one
crop. Plus, some pesticides may interfere with the bees
navigation system. The only consensus is that a number
of factors play a role.
Jack Walsh blames modern methods: We need to get
back to basics, so no more antibiotics, or transporting
bees hundreds of miles for pollination.
This exam paper has four tasks. Complete all tasks.

SAM

SE III

asks.

Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

ISE III

SAMPLE

Text C

Bees in folklore What traditions have you heard?


Joe: My granddad told me bees can recognise their beekeeper!
Alex: Here they say that if someone in the family gets married, you have to tell the bees and leave them
some wedding cake, or theyll get annoyed.
Luis: Because honey was the main sweet food in the old days, quite a few cultures say bees originated with
the gods.
Helen: @Alex Yes, but the same goes for bad news they like to feel part of the family!
Rashid: Ive heard they dont sting at night. Is it true?
Silvio: @Joe Tell him its not just an old wives tale theres research that says they might be able to tell
faces apart.
Silvio: @Rashid No, theyll sting you any time if theyre threatened.
Benjamin: @Alex I read that theyve always been seen as a model for a good family the way they all play
their part and work hard and all that. So I suppose the belief is that if you include them in your family, thatll
be harmonious too.
Text D

The Newbie Beekeepers blog


December 10, 2014

Starting out
After studying a few books, I bought my first hive a new one (its best to avoid second-hand ones
because of risk of disease) and a small colony of workers with a queen. I found a second-hand veil and
jacket, and a cheap smoker for calming down the bees before opening the hive the smoke makes them
think they need to evacuate the hive, so they quickly eat as much honey as they can, which makes them
sleepy and slow. A local farmer was happy to have the hive on his land as long as it was away from his
horses, as for some reason bees dont like them.
I got stung a lot more than I expected at first, until an experienced beekeeper watched me open the hive,
and advised me to keep my movements much more calm and gentle. Oh, and to zip up my veil all the way
I learned that lesson the hard way!
Questions 2125 (one mark per question)
Choose the five statements from AH below that are TRUE according to the information given
in the texts above. Write the letters of the TRUE statements on the lines below (in any order).
21.
22.
23.
24.
25.

A There is an old tradition that you should share news of the family with the bees.
B Research studies have shown that bees only sting people during the daytime.
C A certain proportion of the beehive colony will not survive from one year
to another.
D The spread of CCD risks causing a major problem for the UKs farm and
food production.
E The smell that the bee colony produces is determined by the specific
flowers which they visit.
F More research is needed to confirm whether the varroa mite is the main
cause of CCD.
G Anecdotal and scientific evidence suggest bees can recognise human
facial features.
H CCD means that beehives now have to be moved around the country
for pollination.

Turn over page

page 5

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Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

ISE III

SAMPLE

Questions 2630 (one mark per question)


The summary notes below contain information from the texts on pages 4 and 5. Find a word or
phrase from texts AD to complete the missing information in gaps 2630.
Write your answers on the lines below.

Summary notes
How to keep bees
Essential equipment needed:
a beehive, ideally a: (26.)

one

a bee colony, including (27.)


suitable protective clothing, ie (28.)
an instrument for calming the bees, ie a smoker
Choice of location:
on a piece of land near nectar-bearing plants, eg flowers, crops
at a safe distance from other animals, eg (29.)
Other considerations:
keeping the hive healthy, ie ensuring a varied diet and avoiding (30.)

getting advice from experienced beekeepers keeping up-to-date with the latest research

page 6

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This exam paper has four tasks. Complete all tasks.

SAM

SE III

asks.

Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

ISE III

SAMPLE

Task 3 Reading into writing


Use the information from the four texts you have read to write an article (200230 words) for a
general interest science magazine. The topic of your article is the relationship between honeybees
and humans.
You should plan your article before you start writing. Think about what you want to say and make
some notes to help you in this box:
Planning notes

(No marks are given for these planning notes)

Now write your article of 200230 words on the lines below. Try to use your own words as far as
possible dont just copy sentences from the reading texts.

Turn over page

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Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

SAMPLE

page 8

74

ISE III

This exam paper has four tasks. Complete all tasks.

SAM

SE III

asks.

Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

ISE III

SAMPLE

When you have finished your article, spend 23 minutes reading through what you have written.
Make sure you have answered the task completely. Remember to check how you made use of the
reading texts, as well as the language and organisation of your writing.

Turn over page

page 9

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Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

ISE III

SAMPLE

Task 4 Extended writing


You have been discussing history in your studies. You have been asked to write an essay
(200230 words) giving your opinions on the topic:
When studying the past, its more important to know about ordinary people than famous people.
Do you agree?
You should plan your essay before you start writing. Think about what you want to say and make
some notes to help you in this box:
Planning notes

(No marks are given for these planning notes)

Now write your essay of 200230 words on the lines below.

page 10

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This exam paper has four tasks. Complete all tasks.

SAM

SE III

asks.

Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

ISE III

SAMPLE

Turn over page

page 11

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Appendix 1 Sample Reading & Writing exam paper

ISE III

SAMPLE

When you have finished your essay, spend 23 minutes reading through what you have written.
Make sure you have answered the task completely and remember to check the language and
organisation of your writing.

End of exam
Copyright 2015 Trinity College London

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Appendix 2 Information on the Speaking & Listening exam

Appendix 2 Information on the Speaking & Listening exam


Videos of sample Speaking & Listening exams may be viewed at www.trinitycollege.com/ISE
There is a note-taking sheet on page 80 which may be photocopied and used in the classroom to help
students practise note-taking.

Sample listening test


Examiner rubric:
Youre going to hear part of a radio programme about books. You will hear it twice. The first time, just
listen. Then Ill ask you to summarise the talk in one or two sentences.
Are you ready?
Now listen to the talk again. This time make some notes on your worksheet as you listen, if you want to.
Then Ill ask you to tell me the different ways the speaker evaluates the need for routine in our lives and
whether you think he comes to a conclusion.
Are you ready?

79

Appendix 2 Information on the Speaking & Listening exam

Notes
w

Extra notes

80

Appendix 2 Information on the Speaking & Listening exam

Audio script
In my recent book, I discuss the subject of routine and the effects it has on our lives. Actually, my
original idea was to look at the working methods of successful creative people like writers and artists
to see if there were any helpful lessons to be drawn. The more people I examined, the clearer it became
that there was one thing the vast majority of them had in common: they had a regular working routine
and stuck to it strictly, even obsessively. Their habits and routines often ended up being more like
rituals. To take one example, the composer Beethoven apparently used to start each day with a cup of
strong coffee made with exactly sixty coffee beans, which he insisted on counting out personally. And
thats by no means the oddest ritual I discovered.
Obviously we dont all have to behave like that, but it does appear that routine is something most of
us need. Most humans function better when they have some kind of structure to their lives. In fact,
without routines for day-to-day activities, nothing much would get done. Transport wouldnt run on
time, schools and workplaces would be in a permanent state of chaos, and so on.
So, society as a whole seems to favour, or even require, people with regular lifestyles. But theres a
growing body of research suggesting that too much routine is bad for personal well-being, and its this
aspect that much of the book is concerned with. Breaking up your routine and doing something new, it
appears, increases your happiness. Its not just a case of getting bored: routine also increases our sense
of time passing by too quickly. When nothing new is happening, were not so conscious of events and
simply dont notice the days and weeks slipping away.
Theres also an interesting connection between time and memory, or more exactly two kinds of
connection. Firstly, a lot of what people accept as naturally increasing forgetfulness as they get older
is actually more to do with their lives becoming predictable. Its not so much that they forget things
that have happened but that they didnt really notice them in the first place because theyd become
so automatic. The other thing that strikes a chord with me as I get older is the explanation for why
childhood memories seem so vivid. When youre young, everything is new and your brain is working
overtime to take everything in, so your impressions of events are much more memorable. What we
need to do is to try and recapture that sense of newness by disrupting routines and actively seeking
out new experiences.

Answer key
Gist: Routine is beneficial to some extent. But it is important to break routine and try new things for
happiness and memory (any broadly similar formulation acceptable).
Successful people known to have routine, for example, Beethoven
Not always healthy though can become like a ritual
Some routine is vital transport, schools etc
Also, people seem to need some routine to give structure to lives
Society needs people to have routine
BUT doing new things is important for happiness/well-being it means time doesnt seem to pass
so quickly
Also, newness important for forming and maintaining memory memory loss in older age can be
due to predictability
Conclusion? Speaker appears to conclude that a degree of routine is important for individuals and
society as a whole but that it is very important to avoid becoming too predictable

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Appendix 3 Suggested grammar for ISE III

Appendix 3 Suggested grammar for ISE III


The list below gives some suggested grammar for students to practise when preparing for an
ISE exam. This list is intended to be for guidance only and is not a list of forms the candidate
must produce in the test.

Language requirements
Grammar
w A high degree of grammatical accuracy, errors are rare and difficult to identify
w A broad range of complex structures, used flexibly and effectively in combination and
contrast, including:
Mixed conditionals

Verbs followed by gerund and/or infinitive,


eg forget, stop, go on, remember
Should/must/might/could + perfect infinitive
Correct verb patterns after wish and hope More complex forms of the passive with modals

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Appendix 4 ISE III Task 3 Reading into writing rating scale

Appendix 4 ISE III Task 3 Reading into writing rating scale


Score

Reading and writing

Task fulfilment

Understanding of source materials


Selection of relevant content from source texts
Ability to identify common themes and links within and
across the multiple texts
Adaptation of content to suit the purpose for writing
Use of paraphrasing/summarising

Overall achievement of communicative aim


Awareness of the writer-reader relationship (style and register)
Adequacy of topic coverage

Full and accurate understanding of all source material in


detail demonstrated
A wholly appropriate and accurate selection of relevant
content from the source texts
Excellent ability to identify common themes and links within
and across the multiple texts and finer points of details
An excellent adaptation of content to suit the purpose
for writing
Excellent paraphrasing/summarising skills of long and
demanding texts demonstrated

Excellent achievement of the communicative aim with clarity


and precision
Excellent awareness of the writer-reader relationship
All requirements (ie genre, topic, reader, purpose and number
of words) of the instruction completely met

Full and accurate understanding of most source materials


in detail demonstrated
An appropriate and accurate selection of relevant content
from the source texts (ie most relevant ideas are selected
and most ideas selected are relevant)
Good ability to identify common themes and links within
and across the multiple texts and finer points of details,
eg attitudes implied
A good adaptation of content to suit the purpose
for writing (eg apply the content of the source texts
appropriately to offer solutions, offer some evaluation of
the ideas based on the purpose for writing)
Good paraphrasing/summarising skills of long and
demanding texts demonstrated (with very limited lifting
and a few disconnected ideas)

Good achievement of the communicative aim with clarity


and precision
Good awareness of the writer-reader relationship (ie appropriate
and helpful use of style and register throughout the text)
Most requirements (ie genre, topic, reader, purpose and number
of words) of the instruction appropriately met

Acceptable achievement of the communicative aim with clarity


Full and accurate understanding of more than half of the
and precision
source materials in detail demonstrated
An acceptable selection of relevant content from the source Some awareness of the writer-reader relationship (ie appropriate
and helpful use of style and register in general)
texts (the content selected must come from multiple texts)
Most requirements (ie genre, topic, reader, purpose and number
Acceptable ability to identify common themes and links
of words) of the instruction acceptably met
within and across the multiple texts and finer points of
details, eg attitudes implied
Acceptable adaptation of content to suit the purpose
for writing
Acceptable paraphrasing/summarising skills of long and
demanding texts demonstrated

Inaccurate and limited understanding of most source


materials demonstrated
Inadequate and inaccurate selection of relevant content
from the source texts (ie fewer than half of the relevant
ideas are selected and most of the selected ideas
are irrelevant)
Poor ability to identify common themes and links within
and across the multiple texts and finer points of details,
eg attitudes implied (ie misunderstanding of the common
themes and links is evident)
Poor adaptation of content to suit the purpose for writing
(ie does not use the source texts content to address the
purpose for writing)
Poor paraphrasing/summarising skills of long and
demanding texts demonstrated (with heavy lifting and
many disconnected ideas)

Task not attempted


Paper void
No performance to evaluate

Poor achievement of the communicative aim (ie difficult to follow


and unconvincing for reader)
Poor awareness of the writer-reader relationship
Most requirements (ie genre, topic, reader, purpose and number
of words) of the instruction are NOT met

83

Appendix 4 ISE III Task 3 Reading into writing rating scale

Score

Organisation and structure

Language control

Text organisation, including use of paragraphing,


beginnings/endings
Presentation of ideas and arguments, including clarity and
coherence of their development
Consistent use of format to suit the task
Use of signposting

Range and accuracy of grammar


Range and accuracy of lexis
Effect of linguistic errors on understanding
Control of punctuation and spelling

Effective organisation of text


Very clear presentation and logical development of all
ideas and arguments, underpinning the salient issues with
expanding and supporting details at some length
Appropriate and helpful format throughout the text
Effective signposting

Wide range of grammatical items relating to the task with high


level of accuracy
Wide range of lexical items relating to the task with high level of
accuracy
Any errors do not impede understanding
Excellent spelling and punctuation of complex sentences

Good organisation of text (ie a clear and well-structured


text of complex subjects)
Clear presentation and logical development of most ideas
and arguments, underpinning the salient issues with
expanding and supporting details at some length
Appropriate and helpful format in most of the text
Good signposting (eg appropriate and flexible use of
cohesive devices and topic sentences)

Appropriate range of grammatical items relating to the task with


good level of accuracy
Appropriate range of lexical items relating to the task with good
level of accuracy (with little evidence of avoidance strategies and
good command of colloquialisms)
Errors do not impede understanding
Good spelling and punctuation of complex sentences, apart from
occasional slips

Acceptable organisation of text (showed awareness of


the need for structure, but may only be partially achieved
with limited use of introductions/conclusions and topic
sentences, however paragraphs are used throughout)
Presentation and development of most ideas and
arguments are acceptably clear and logical, underpinning
the salient issues with expanding and supporting details
at some length (but arguments may not follow in a
predictable order)
Appropriate and helpful format in general
Acceptable signposting (some signposting used but may
be inconsistent; some use of cohesive devices but may be
inconsistent)

Acceptable range of grammatical items relating to the task with


acceptable level of accuracy
Acceptable range of lexical items relating to the task with
acceptable level of accuracy
Errors sometimes impede understanding (sometimes require the
reader to reread and/or reflect)
Acceptable spelling and punctuation of complex sentences

Very limited or poor text organisation (the writing appears


to lack structure with limited use of introductions/
conclusions and topic sentences. Paragraphing may be
absent/inappropriate)
Most ideas and arguments lack coherence and do not
progress logically, ideas are arranged in an entirely
unpredictable order)
Inappropriate format throughout the text
Poor signposting

Inadequate evidence of grammatical range and accuracy (may


have control over the language below the level)
Inadequate evidence of lexical range and accuracy (may have
control over the language below the level)
Errors frequently impede understanding
Poor spelling and punctuation throughout

Task not attempted


Paper void
No performance to evaluate

84

Appendix 5 ISE III Task 4 Extended writing rating scale

Appendix 5 ISE III Task 4 Extended writing rating scale


Score

Task fulfilment

Organisation and structure

Language control

Overall achievement of communicative


aim
Awareness of the writer-reader
relationship (style and register)
Adequacy of topic coverage

Text organisation, including use of


paragraphing, beginnings/endings
Presentation of ideas and arguments,
including clarity and coherence of their
development
Consistent use of format to suit the task
Use of signposting

Range and accuracy of grammar


Range and accuracy of lexis
Effect of linguistic errors on
understanding
Control of punctuation and spelling

Excellent achievement of the


communicative aim with clarity
and precision
Excellent awareness of the writerreader relationship
All requirements (ie genre, topic,
reader, purpose and number of words)
of the instruction completely met

Effective organisation of text


Very clear presentation and logical
development of all ideas and
arguments, underpinning the salient
issues with expanding and supporting
details at some length
Appropriate and helpful format
throughout the text
Effective signposting

Wide range of grammatical items


relating to the task with high level of
accuracy
Wide range of lexical items relating to
the task with high level of accuracy
Any errors do not impede
understanding
Excellent spelling and punctuation of
complex sentences

Good achievement of the


communicative aim with clarity
and precision
Good awareness of the writer-reader
relationship (ie appropriate and helpful
use of style and register throughout
the text)
Most requirements (ie genre, topic,
reader, purpose and number of words)
of the instruction appropriately met

Good organisation of text (ie a clear


and well-structured text of complex
subjects)
Clear presentation and logical
development of most ideas and
arguments, underpinning the salient
issues with expanding and supporting
details at some length
Appropriate and helpful format in most
of the text
Good signposting (eg appropriate and
flexible use of cohesive devices and
topic sentences

Appropriate range of grammatical


items relating to the task with good
level of accuracy
Appropriate range of lexical items
relating to the task with good level
of accuracy (with little evidence
of avoidance strategies and good
command of colloquialisms)
Errors do not impede understanding
Good spelling and punctuation of
complex sentences, apart from
occasional slips

Acceptable achievement of the


communicative aim with clarity and
precision
Some awareness of the writer-reader
relationship (ie appropriate and helpful
use of style and register in general)
Most requirements (ie genre, topic,
reader, purpose and number of words)
of the instruction acceptably met

Acceptable organisation of text (showed


awareness of the need for structure,
but may only be partially achieved with
limited use of introductions/conclusions
and topic sentences, however
paragraphs are used throughout)
Presentation and development of most
ideas and arguments are acceptably
clear and logical, , underpinning the
salient issues with expanding and
supporting details at some length
(but arguments may not follow in a
predictable order)
Appropriate and helpful format in general
Acceptable signposting (some
signposting used but may be
inconsistent; some use of cohesive
devices but may be inconsistent)

Acceptable range of grammatical items


relating to the task with acceptable
level of accuracy
Acceptable range of lexical items
relating to the task with acceptable
level of accuracy
Errors sometimes impede
understanding (sometimes require the
reader to reread and/or reflect)
Acceptable spelling and punctuation of
complex sentences

Poor achievement of the


communicative aim (ie difficult to
follow and unconvincing for reader)
Poor awareness of the writer-reader
relationship
Most requirements (ie genre, topic,
reader, purpose and number of words)
of the instruction are NOT met

Very limited or poor text organisation


(the writing appears to lack structure
with limited use of introductions/
conclusions and topic sentences.
Paragraphing may be absent/
inappropriate)
Most ideas and arguments lack
coherence and do not progress logically,
ideas are arranged in an entirely
unpredictable order)
Inappropriate format throughout the text
Poor signposting

Inadequate evidence of grammatical


range and accuracy (may have control
over the language below the level)
Inadequate evidence of lexical range
and accuracy (may have control over
the language below the level)
Errors frequently impede understanding
Poor spelling and punctuation
throughout

Task not attempted


Paper void
No performance to evaluate

85

Appendix 6 ISE III Speaking & Listening rating scale

Appendix 6 ISE III Speaking & Listening rating scale


This rating scale is used by the examiner to make a subjective judgement of the candidates performance in
the Speaking exam (the Topic, Collaborative and Conversation task).
Score

Communicative
effectiveness
Task fulfilment
Appropriacy of
contributions/turn-taking
Repair strategies

Interactive listening

Language control

Delivery

Comprehension and
relevant response
Level of understanding
Speech rate of examiner
interventions
Speed and accuracy
of response

Range
Accuracy/precision
Effects of inaccuracies

Intelligibility
Lexical stress/intonation
Fluency
Effects on the listener

Fulfils the task very well


Initiates and responds with
effective turn-taking
Contributes to effective
topic maintenance
and development, by
fully incorporating the
examiners utterances into
their own contributions
Solves communication
problems naturally, if any

Understands interventions
including those that are
complex in grammar
or ideas
Interprets examiner aims
and attitude accurately,
following the line of
argument
Responses are immediate
and always to the point

Uses a wide range of


grammatical structures/
lexis flexibly to deal with
topics at this level
Consistently maintains a
high level of grammatical
accuracy and lexical
precision effortlessly,
even when using complex
language
Occasional minor slips may
occur but difficult to spot

Clearly intelligible
Uses focal stress and
intonation very effectively
Effortlessly speaks very
promptly and fluently
Requires no careful
listening

Fulfils the task


appropriately
Initiates and responds with
effective turn-taking
Contributes to effective
topic maintenance and
development, by linking
contributions to those
of the examiner (eg
summarising, indicating
understanding of points
made by the examiner,
establishing common
ground in the interaction)
Solves communication
problems naturally, if any

Understands all examiner


interventions on a first
hearing
Interprets examiner aims
and attitude accurately,
following the line of
argument
Immediate and relevant
responses to interventions

Uses an appropriate range


of grammatical structures/
lexis to deal with topics at
this level
Consistently maintains a
high level of grammatical
accuracy and lexical
precision
Occasional minor slips
occur

Clearly intelligible
Uses focal stress and
intonation effectively
Speaks promptly and
fluently
Requires no careful
listening

Fulfils the task acceptably


Initiates and responds with
effective turn-taking
Maintains and develops the
interaction appropriately,
while indicating
understanding of what the
examiner has said
Solves communication
problems naturally, if any

Understands most
interventions on a first
hearing
Interprets examiner
aims and attitude by
making links with earlier
information
Prompt responses to
the examiner showing
relatively quick
understanding

Uses an acceptable range


of grammatical structures/
lexis to deal with topics at
this level
Consistently maintains a
high level of grammatical
accuracy and lexical
precision
Occasional minor slips
occur

Clearly intelligible
Uses focal stress and
intonation appropriately
Generally speaks promptly
and fluently
Requires no careful
listening

Does not fulfil the task


Initiates and responds
adequately
Maintains and develops
the interaction acceptably,
but does not usually link
contributions to those of
the examiner
Solves communication
problems appropriately or
acceptably, if any

Appears to understand
interventions but does
not always respond
appropriately
Occasionally digresses
from the examiners aims
Occasional hesitation in
order to make sense of
examiner input

Uses a range of
grammatical structures/
lexis that is not always
adequate to deal with
topics at this level
Does not show an adequate
level of grammatical
accuracy and lexical
precision at this level
Some or many errors
may occur

May not always be clearly


intelligible
Does not always use focal
stress and intonation
appropriately
Does not always speak
promptly and fluently
May require some careful
listening

No performance to assess (candidate does not speak, or does not speak in English). Also use if no topic is prepared.

86

Appendix 7 ISE III Independent listening rating scale

Appendix 7 ISE III Independent listening rating scale


This rating scale is used by the examiner to make a subjective judgement of the candidates
performance in the Independent listening task.
CEFR benchmark: Can understand enough to follow extended speech on abstract and complex
topics beyond his/her own field, though he/she may need to confirm occasional details, especially
if the accent is unfamiliar. Can recognise a wide range of idiomatic expressions and colloquialisms,
appreciating register shifts. Can follow extended speech even when it is not clearly structured and
when relationships are only implied and not signalled explicitly.

Identifies and reports all important points and supporting details rapidly and accurately
with confidence
Shows complete understanding of main points, including relevance to message as a whole
Identifies speakers attitude and line of argument
Evaluates speakers arguments in a sophisticated way

Identifies main points and reports them briefly but accurately


Shows good understanding of information in recording, but not always their relevance
to message as a whole
Does not always grasp speakers attitude or line of argument
Does not always evaluate speakers arguments

Identifies main points but incompletely or in a rather general way


Shows some understanding of information in recording, but does not differentiate
between major and minor points
Does not recognise speakers attitude or line of argument
Does not evaluate speakers arguments

No performance to assess (eg candidate does not speak)

Identifies and reports most main points and supporting details rapidly and accurately
Shows good understanding of main points, including relevance to message as a whole
Recognises speakers attitude and line of argument
Evaluates speakers arguments

Constraints
This is primarily a test of listening; the spoken response should be treated as evidence of whether
the message has been comprehended.
Examiners should be guided by the grading criteria and by the following general questions:
How good is the candidates understanding of the content of the input?
How good is the candidates understanding of the speakers viewpoint?
How much of the message has NOT been responded to?
Examiners should avoid judgements based on pronunciation, grammatical accuracy and
spoken fluency.

87