Exam Instruction Words

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KEY WORDS FOR EXAMINATION CANDIDATES The following instruction words which are used by examiners have been specifically chosen as those which will avoid causing confusion amongst candidates. Each word has a precise meaning so that requirements are clear to candidates, and students should be advised to familiarize themselves with the words and the precise meanings. Advise/recommend: Amplify: Analyze: Appraise/assess/evaluate: Assess: Clarify: Comment (critically): Compare (with): Contrast: Criticize: Demonstrate: Describe: Discuss: Distinguish: Evaluate: Explain/interpret: Illustrate: Interpret: Justify: Present information, opinions or recommendations to someone to enable that recipient to take action Expand or enlarge upon the meaning of (a statement or quotation). Determine and explain the constituent parts of. Judge the importance or value of. See "appraise". Explain more clearly the meaning of. Explain. Explain similarities and differences between. Place in opposition to bring out the difference(s). Present the faults in a theory or policy or opinion. Show by reasoning the truth of. Present the details and characteristics of. Explain the opposing arguments. Specify the differences between. See "appraise". Set out in detail the meaning of. Use an example - chart, diagram, graph or figure as appropriate - to explain something. See "explain". State adequate grounds for.

List (and explain): Prove: Recommend: Reconcile: Relate: State: Summarize: Tabulate:

Itemize (and detail meaning of). Show by testing the accuracy of. See "advise". Make compatible apparently conflicting statements or theories. Show connections between separate matters. Express. State briefly the essential point (dispensing with examples and details). Set out facts or figures in a table.

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