S-Cool Revision Summary

S-Cool Revision Summary

Often in the English GCSE exam you are asked to compare two articles, evaluating which is the most effective for a particular purpose.

Usually you will be directed to examine:

  • Presentation

  • Language

  • Content

The following is a list of the sorts of things you should be looking for when commenting on a text. It is not an exhaustive list, but should cover the main areas.

Remember that the key to getting a good mark is not identifying these things; it is your analysis of their purpose and effectiveness.




Photographs; headlines and subheadings;

Bullet points; illustrations; cartoons and diagrams; graphs and grids;

Boxes; bold, italic, large or small type; upper case or fancy fonts, colour or black and white.

Is it written in a genre/form such as a letter, or article?

The Purpose of the writing is crucial. This can be to:

Instruct; Persuade; Describe

Inform; Entertain; Discuss.

The purpose will affect whether the writing is

Complex, technical or simple

Formal or informal (such as using slang and abbreviations)

Literal or poetic / figurative

Factual/objective, or opinion based or emotive.

Is the content fact-based or opinion-led?

Is the piece detailed or short?

Is the piece interesting or dull?