Assessment Report

New Zealand Scholarship
Chinese 2016

Standard 93005

Part A: Commentary

Scholarship level performance requires analysis and evaluation, rather than just descriptive or paraphrasing skills. Responses need to show insight. This higher-order thinking appeared to be the most challenging aspect for many candidates. Responses in question three were more organised due to the increase of the preparation time to 10 minutes. More confidence was shown in their speaking responses.

Part B: Report on performance standard

Candidates who were awarded Scholarship with Outstanding Performance commonly:

  • went beyond the stimulus material and incorporated their personal experiences into the responses
  • demonstrated critical thinking skills through the analysis of the stimulus material and developed substantiated responses from them
  • could extrapolate and develop their own thoughts and opinions in a logical and well-justified manner
  • developed their ideas and opinions skilfully, based on both New Zealand and Chinese cultural contexts
  • showed language ability beyond Chinese Curriculum Level 8 and expressed their ideas confidently and convincingly, integrating a wide range of vocabulary and structures 
  • used both English and Chinese language flexibly and confidently, showing the ability to link ideas from the materials in their own original and creative way.

Candidates who were awarded Scholarship commonly:

  • showed they understood all the key points from the stimulus material, and developed their response from them
  • expressed their opinions with the support of appropriate evidence from the stimulus material
  • demonstrated language ability up to Chinese Curriculum Level 8, and confidently expressed their view with a range of vocabulary and structures
  • used language flexibly, showing an ability to link ideas from the stimulus material to their own ideas in both Chinese and English.

Other candidates commonly:

  • did not answer all questions fully, or did not fulfil the requirements of the questions
  • did not create interest for the reader or listener
  • gave irrelevant / insufficient information
  • answered questions without flair or confidence
  • used language that contained a reasonable variety of vocabulary and structures appropriate to Curriculum Level 8, but not comfortably integrated into their writing / speaking
  • lacked balanced skills in English and / or Chinese.

Further comments

The examination assessed language up to and including Curriculum Level 8, or equivalent, to ensure fairness and equity for candidates studying Chinese as an additional language.

The overall performance of the standard was of a good level, with many candidates achieving one or two questions at scholarship level.

Candidates, however, need to be reminded that they must answer all the questions specifically with reference to the stimulus material and not just express personal opinions.

Candidates were expected to:

  • show understanding of the stimulus material and its inferences, through analysis and evaluation, independent reflection, and extrapolation
  • assemble ideas in a logical, clear, concise and seamless / coherent manner, and make minimal use of expressions from the stimulus material.

Inappropriate register of responses was of concern (particularly in question two which required a response in ENGLISH). Candidates should be reminded that this is a formal, academic context; therefore, use of slang, abbreviation and casual language is not appropriate.

Candidates who could structure their writing effectively (paragraphing, connectors, rhetorical devices) produced more convincing answers.

Students are reminded that they are assessed on their speaking skills and not reading skills, so if they make bullet points with key ideas as part of their planning they should focus on delivering their spoken response to question three in a way that captivates and holds the interest of the intended audience.

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