How can I ensure I am answering the given question throughout the essay?

A common yet frustrating issue that examiners find with essays under exam conditions is that the candidate fails to answer the question to the desired level. This may be due to a misinterpretation of the question itself, or, more commonly, because of what is simple known as ‘waffling’. To avoid this when writing an English essay, there are several key tips to keep in mind.

Firstly, it is important to make a clear reference to the given question in both the introduction and conclusion. This way, the examiner can see in your introduction that you are planning on exploring the question throughout the essay with chosen evidence and that you will eventually come to a concise and supportable answer to that question in your conclusion.

Secondly, it may be useful for you to make reference to the question after every piece of evidence or paragraph you give in favour of your opinion. (i.e. “In light of the evidence presented, it could be argued that…..”.) This will make it easier for the examiner that you are staying on track.

Lastly, remember that your examiners are human and that they want to give you top marks, provided that you give succinct points that are supported with valid pieces of evidence.

Jake C. GCSE Biology tutor, GCSE English Language tutor, GCSE Economi...

2 years ago

Answered by Jake, a GCSE English Language tutor with MyTutor

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


Stephen J. A Level Classical Civilisation tutor, GCSE Classical Civil...
View profile
£18 /hr

Stephen J.

Degree: Classics (Bachelors) - Bristol University

Subjects offered: English Language, Latin+ 3 more

English Language
Classical Greek
Classical Civilisation

“About Me:I am a second year mature student at the University of Bristol, studying Classics. I harbour a true love for the Classics, as well as for English and French literature, and I find great pleasure in sharing this enthusiasm ...”

PremiumChloe J. Mentoring -Personal Statements- tutor, Uni Admissions Test ....
View profile
£22 /hr

Chloe J.

Degree: English Literature (Bachelors) - Durham University

Subjects offered: English Language, English and World Literature+ 4 more

English Language
English and World Literature
English Literature
-Personal Statements-

“In my tutorials, I would explore the best ways to remember key facts for each individual student, as well as evaluating how newly learned information could be applied to questions”

PremiumMegan S. A Level English Literature tutor, GCSE English Literature tu...
View profile
£24 /hr

Megan S.

Degree: English and Hispanic Studies (Bachelors) - Durham University

Subjects offered: English Language, Spanish+ 4 more

English Language
Government and Politics
English Literature
-Personal Statements-

“ Through my previous tutoring experiences in an international tutoring company in Huddersfield, as a tutor in the Student Community Action One-to-One tutoring scheme in Durham and in an international language school in Yor”

About the author

Jake C. GCSE Biology tutor, GCSE English Language tutor, GCSE Economi...
View profile

Jake C.

Currently unavailable: no new students

Degree: International Relations (Bachelors) - Exeter University

Subjects offered: English Language, History+ 2 more

English Language

“Tutor from the University of Exeter studying International Relations, excited to help you achieve your potential and beyond in history and English!”

MyTutor guarantee

You may also like...

Posts by Jake

How can I effectively include historiography in my history essay?

How can I ensure I am answering the given question throughout the essay?

What are the key differences between plant and animal cells?

What is an easy way to remember the effects of the exchange rate on imports and exports?

Other GCSE English Language questions

How can I avoid "waffling" when analysing a text?

GCSE English: writing to analyse, review and comment

What are presentational features and how do you use them to answer analyse texts?

How do I pick out the key features for a question comparing two texts?

View GCSE English Language tutors


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