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How to approach a comparison question?

General Tips:

- If this question regards the three books you had to read, only compare 2 – it is very difficult to get top marks comparing three and most commonly two will get you just a good a grade or even better

- Know your context – find out background information about the authors of each text – EXAMINERS LOVE THIS (but don’t go overboard)

- Most texts you will be given they will be similar in a thematic way – so that is the first thing you should identify – the examiner has given you these texts for a reason – identify that reason

- After that it all about writing about similarities and differences

Structure after introduction

  1. Context

  2. Genre

  3. Audience

  4. Themes (there could be many so focus on ones which you know most about and can really dig into)

  5. Literary devices – e.g. realism, symbolism, irony, foreshadowing, metaphors, repetition

  6. Conclusion 

Julia R. IB English Language tutor, IB Business Studies tutor

10 months ago

Answered by Julia, an IB English Language tutor with MyTutor

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Maryam R.

Degree: Philosophy and German (Bachelors) - Oxford, Lincoln College University

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“About Me I'm Kate, a PhD student at the University of Cambridge, studying English Literature.  I'm passionate about all things literary, particularly poetry and the modern novel.  My not-so-secret love is children's literature - my u...”

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Julia R.

Degree: Law (Bachelors) - Durham University

Subjects offered: English Language, Business Studies

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