Key terms used in Examination questions
Account for: Explain the process or reason for something being the way it is – Explore the main ideas
Calculate: Find out by using mathematics
Complete: Finish off
Contrast: Show the differences (‘compare and contrast’ questions are very common in exams – they want you to say how something is similar and how it may be different too).
Describe: Give a detailed account
Discuss: Explore the subject by looking at its advantages and disadvantages (i.e. pros and cons, for and against). Attempt to come to some sort of judgement
Enumerate: Make a list of the point under discussion
Examine: Look at something closely
Explore: Look at something closely or investigate
Evaluate: Give an opinion by exploring the good and bad points (pros and cons). It’s a bit like asking you to assess something. Attempt to support your argument with expert opinion.
Identify: Recognise, prove something as being certain.
Indicate: Point out, make something known
Justify: Give good reasons for offering an opinion or reaching a conclusion
Outline: Concentrate on the main bits of the topic or item.
Summarise: Give the main points of an idea or argument. Leave out unnecessary details which could cloud the issue.