Flummoxed HSC students face unexpected apricot conundrum in inaugural English examapricot,HSC,students,Englishexam,conundrum
Flummoxed HSC students face unexpected apricot conundrum in inaugural English exam

Flummoxed HSC students face unexpected apricot conundrum in inaugural English exam

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National NSW Education HSC students stumped by apricots in first English exam


The HSC class of 2023 in New South Wales has recently completed their first exam, English, which was expected to be relatively straightforward. However, some students found themselves grappling with the significance of apricots and other complex literary devices. The exam included previously unseen texts, such as a poem, an opinion article, and a novel extract, which students had to analyze and answer questions about. While some students found the exam challenging, others felt it was fair and manageable. The exam also included a single essay question related to a play or novel studied in class. Overall, the exam seemed to have a mix of reactions from the students, with some feeling confident and well-prepared, while others struggled and felt overwhelmed.

The Apricot Conundrum

In the first section of the English Advanced paper, students had to analyze various literary devices used in the given texts. One particular poem, titled “Being Here” by Vincent O’Sullivan, included references to someone biting into an apricot, as well as bees in their natural environment. Some students expressed their confusion and inability to understand the poem on online forums following the exam. One student said that the first half of the poem made them feel like they had lost the ability to read.

However, others were able to decipher the meaning of the poem. Neha Prasad, a student from St Marys Senior High, interpreted the poem as addressing the preoccupation with obtaining physical evidence of past events at the expense of enjoying life as it happens. She believed it was about living in the moment and being connected to the natural environment. Prasad also mentioned that she enjoyed reading an opinion piece about how individuals in modern times tend to shape their personal narratives as if they were reality TV personalities. She even referenced the Kardashians in her response, showing an understanding of contemporary cultural references.

Student Perspectives

Overall, students from St Marys Senior High felt that the exam questions were fair. Joshua Cinco, another student from the school, found the essay question very similar to previous HSC exams, which allowed him to use a pre-prepared essay and finish the exam early. Jasmine Sabaten, on the other hand, expressed surprise that there were no images to respond to in the exam paper, which had been the case in previous years. She mentioned that she found a particular novel extract relatable, as it discussed being in a foreign place and feeling homesick.

However, not all students had a smooth experience. Koray Vasfi admitted to feeling nervous before the exam but said that his nerves dissipated once he sat down in the exam hall. Parker Mahoney, unfortunately, had a difficult start to the HSC when he forgot most of the quotes from his essay during the exam. Despite his setback, Mahoney believed that he managed to write a good essay about George Orwell’s “1984” and appreciated the opportunity to explore different ideas in his response.

Educators’ Perspectives

Eva Gold, the president of the English Teachers Association of NSW, commented on the essay question, stating that it appeared fairly straightforward. However, she noted that students may not have spent enough time analyzing the precise question. Gold emphasized the importance of analyzing the question itself thoroughly and providing a powerful answer. She encouraged students to critically evaluate their prescribed texts and consider the extent to which they ignite ideas about enriching their view of the world.

Final Thoughts

With 124 exams over the next 18 days, it is crucial for HSC students to navigate each test with confidence and preparation. The English exam challenged students to analyze various literary devices and express their ideas effectively. While some students found certain aspects of the exam difficult, others found it manageable and even enjoyable. The experience of the apricot conundrum highlights the importance of close reading and interpretation skills. It reminds students that sometimes, understanding a poem or piece of literature may require careful analysis and multiple perspectives.

As the HSC progresses, students should remain focused and prioritize effective preparation. It is important for them to engage with the texts they have studied, critically analyze the questions, and convey their ideas clearly and powerfully. By doing so, they can navigate the remaining exams successfully and achieve their desired results.

Note: This report is a purely fictional account and is not based on actual events or individuals. The language used is Australian English.


Flummoxed HSC students face unexpected apricot conundrum in inaugural English exam
<< photo by KoolShooters >>
The image is for illustrative purposes only and does not depict the actual situation.

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