Questions and Examples of A March 2017 Written Piece – LearnMate


VCE English Language Units 3/4 – Interactive Course
Learn the entire VCE English Language 3/4 course inside out, in a way that is interactive, fun and engaging! With over 600 students using my interactive online course for their English Language studies, you definitely can’t go wrong! This course is entirely comprehensive, meaning that you could be struggling at English Language OR are a pro and just need that extra bit of polishing! I have made this course so that caters to all levels! Part of my offering is a complete metalanguage list for all of the subsystems AND a complete quotations list for all topics in the course. I also provide you with tons of COMPLETE sample essays covering a wide range of topics, as well as analytical commentaries. Talk about value!

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VCE English Language – Sample Written Piece & Questions!

In today’s post, I’d like to present to students a sample informal written piece along with some questions that I have created for you. I found this piece in the opinion section of the Herald Sun.

Hint: get a copy of the Herald Sun, Age, Australia and go to the opinion section – you’ll often see examples of informal language in use. If you want to go a step further, you can even make your own questions for these pieces you find in the paper 🙂

With many schools conducting their first SAC for the English Language as short answer questions shortly (or already have!), I believe this post will help many students! Make sure that you ask your teacher when and in what format your first SAC is – never leave this to the last minute. Even if you first SAC isn’t a short answer piece, you can still practice as undoubtedly this will help you for the exam, or just for understanding metalanguage!

I want you to look at this transcript and ask yourself first and foremost, “why is this piece informal?”. Think about that for a few moments and then move.

“Why is this informal?”

What makes it informal? To give you some hints, have a look at:

  • The imitation of the spoken mode…
  • The use of personal pronouns…
  • The use of contractions or diminutives…
  • The lexical features such as Australian colloquialisms

Okay, that’s enough. But use that as food for thought 🙂


Download the actual text here and read through thoroughly first:


Answer the following short answer questions, paying close attention to the marking! Also sorry there are no line numbers in this text due to it being in a newspaper. 

  1. What are the register and the social purpose of this text? Explain the connection between the register and the social purpose. (4 marks)
  2. Who is the intended audience of this text? What linguistic features show this intended audience to be true? (4 marks)
  3. Comment on two different features of spoken discourse used in this text. Why has the author used these features? (5 marks)
  4. Comment on the use of phonological features in this text. (2 marks)
  5. Comment on the use of simile in lines 41 – 42 in relation to the text’s social purpose (2 marks).


For those who want to get even further ahead, I’d also recommend using this piece to write an analytical commentary/analysis. You can find a complete template here in my online course on how to write an analytical commentary.

Short Answer Tips

  1. Look at the marks! This will give you an indicator as to how much you need to write. You don’t want to write too much, or even too little. This will mean you will run out of time, or have too much time left over and will compromise on quality answers. 
  2. Look for plurals in the question (does it say ‘features’ or ‘choices’?).
  3. Do not list or write dot-points. This is an English subject.
  4. Try and knock this out ASAP when you get into the exam. More marks are allocated to the commentary and an essay section. However, this doesn’t mean you compromise on quality.
  5. This section is a great test of your metalinguistic knowledge. If you fail to know your metalanguage then this section will be very difficult to complete indeed!
  6. Pay attention to the timing!

I will be running the most comprehensive workshop for VCE English Language 3/4 these coming autumn holidays, with a particular focus on formal language (Unit 3 AOS 2). To find out more, please go here or here

Don’t miss out – my workshops always sell out every holiday – and I have got so much planned for you. Continue setting those foundations and maintain dominance throughout the year! 

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Questions and Examples of A March 2017 Written Piece – LearnMate

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