Assessment Report

New Zealand Scholarship
Agricultural & Horticultural Science 2019

Standard 93105


Part A: Commentary

The overall quality of the candidate’s responses was pleasing, with most candidates completing all three questions in the allocated time. The published assessment specifications had been well utilised showing that candidates were able to prepare themselves with a thorough knowledge of the focus issues.

The questions examined candidates’ deeper understanding and their ability to critically analyse and evaluate various aspects of those issues, and to expand on the knowledge and understanding gained within their subject learning.

In the Scholarship performance standard, the primary production system extends from the production stage right through to the consumer. However, when candidates were answering questions in relation to the primary production system, they tended to focus on the production stage only. This was of significance in Questions 1 and 3.

Question 2 was based around consumer perspectives within the global economy and how they have guided innovation. Those candidates who had a broad and detailed knowledge or understanding of their selected production systems generally presented a scholarship level answer, while those who had a narrower understanding tended to struggle, identifying innovations from only part of the production system or not even articulating what the consumer perspectives were. 

Part B: Report on performance standard

Candidates who were awarded Outstanding Performance commonly:

  • provided an answer that was well structured, articulated, and contained evidence of a highly developed level of knowledge of the chosen primary production system or contemporary issue
  • clearly demonstrated perception and reflection in their responses to the questions, and not a rote learned response that contained a lot of ‘fact’ but little unique thinking relevant to the question that has been asked.

Candidates who were awarded Scholarship commonly:

  • discussed the questions effectively with perception and critical understanding of what was being asked
  • were able to apply their knowledge and understanding of the topics provided in the assessment specifications (Questions 1 and 3; Agricultural greenhouse gases and climate change implications and the implications of land use changes). They also applied their knowledge and understanding of the production and marketing of specific products to Question 2
  • planned their response for each question to assist the construction of an answer that contained accurate, relevant and appropriate information
  • analysed the potential for innovation across the whole primary production system – not just at the farm or production level
  • provided a well-structured series of paragraphs or sections within their answer
  • used clear, correct statements and appropriate data to support their discussions.

Other candidates

Candidates who were not awarded Scholarship commonly:

  • provided vague, shallow answers that lacked detail in either the information provided or the discussion of that information. Inaccurate data, e.g. in relation the Agricultural GHG’s, was presented
  • had not taken the guidance given in the Assessment Specifications when preparing for the examination
  • did not fully apply knowledge and understanding that would be expected from a candidate who had fully engaged in the Level 3 Agricultural & Horticultural Science course. This includes the production and marketing aspects throughout the entire production system, as well as considering the wider sustainability issues of production (environmental, economic and social)
  • relied on or gave rote-learned answers that were out of date, incorrect or irrelevant to the question and which did not meet the criteria of the Performance Descriptor for Scholarship.


Subject page


Previous years' reports
2016 (PDF, 42KB)

2017 (PDF, 42KB)

2018 (PDF, 74KB)

Skip to main page content Accessibility page with list of access keys Home Page Site Map Contact Us