How can I memorise criticisms if I don't know the exam question?

At first, this seems like something hard to do. However, when you think about it, you realise it's just the same as knowing which quotes to memorise in a closed book exam.

The easiest way to go about doing this is to, as the year goes on, collect different criticisms about the text you are reading from multiple sources, and write them all down, noting as well which theme(s) they relate to. When it comes to revising for the exam, look in your collection for the quotes which can be applied to as many different themes (or characters!) as possible, and some other really strong ones. (For example, if you have one on Great Expectations that is strictly about parenting, but it's a really great, detailed criticism that you know you can really expand on, you may want to memorise this as well just in case it comes up and you need to use it).

In the exam, you just have to remember that you have to use RELEVANT criticisms, and not just put one in for the sake of using a critic, when in fact it has no connection whatsoever to your thesis.

Vittoria S. GCSE Business Studies tutor, A Level Business Studies tut...

3 weeks ago

Answered by Vittoria, an A Level English Literature tutor with MyTutor

Still stuck? Get one-to-one help from a personally interviewed subject specialist


Kate M. GCSE English Literature tutor, GCSE History tutor, A Level En...
View profile
£22 /hr

Kate M.

Degree: Combined Honours in Social Sciences (Bachelors) - Durham University

Subjects offered: English Literature, Philosophy and Ethics+ 2 more

English Literature
Philosophy and Ethics
-Personal Statements-

“Hi! I’m Kate and I’m a student at Durham University. My degree is made up of History and Politics modules, as well as some English Literature, Anthropology, and Art History, so I’m well equipped to provide as indepth or broad an insig...”

Gusta M. A Level Classical Civilisation tutor, A Level English Litera...
View profile
£20 /hr

Gusta M.

Degree: English Literature (Bachelors) - Kings, London University

Subjects offered: English Literature, Maths+ 7 more

English Literature
English Language
Classical Civilisation
-Personal Statements-

“Hi, I'm Gusta and I'm a 21 year old English student from London.Unsurprisingly, I love books! Whether it is reading them, discussing them or writing about them, it is unusual for me to find something that I dislike or don't want to f...”

PremiumGrace G. GCSE English Literature tutor, GCSE History tutor, Mentoring...
View profile
£24 /hr

Grace G.

Degree: English Literature (Bachelors) - Exeter University

Subjects offered: English Literature, Sociology+ 2 more

English Literature

“I am an English Literature student at Exeter University, and have always had a passion and love for writing and reading; I hope this will be evident in my tutorials, and I can make my students realise why English Literature is suchan ...”

About the author

Vittoria S. GCSE Business Studies tutor, A Level Business Studies tut...
View profile
£20 /hr

Vittoria S.

Degree: English and Spanish (Bachelors) - Exeter University

Subjects offered: English Literature, Spanish+ 3 more

English Literature
Extended Project Qualification
Business Studies
-Personal Statements-

“Hi! I am a current humanities undergraduate student at the University of Exeter, exploring the amazing subjects of English and Spanish. One of my passions is learning about other cultures, and English and Spanish both allow me to do t...”

MyTutor guarantee

You may also like...

Posts by Vittoria

How can I memorise criticisms if I don't know the exam question?

How can I revise for my listening exam?

How do I practice writing an essay in the timed conditions?

What are some good Spanish idioms to include in my research essay?

Other A Level English Literature questions

Is it better to develop a few points very thoroughly or make more points even if I do not have the chance to elaborate on them as much?

How should I structure my essay in an exam?

How should you structure an A-level English Literature essay?

How to approach an essay question?

View A Level English Literature tutors


We use cookies to improve our service. By continuing to use this website, we'll assume that you're OK with this. Dismiss