Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    ziawj2 is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    231
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Direction of an Item of an Exam

    The following statements is given to direct my students to rewrite a letter, but I don't know wheter my students understand what they are expected to do. Please check it for me.

    Direction: Please rewrite the following letter to make the meaning of the letter clear, and to use appropriate grammar, mechanics, words, etc.

  2. #2
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    23,493
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Direction of an Item of an Exam

    Quote Originally Posted by ziawj2 View Post
    The following statements is given to direct my students to rewrite a letter, but I don't know whether my students understand what they are expected to do. Please check it for me.

    Direction: Please rewrite the following letter to make the meaning of the letter clear, and to use appropriate grammar, mechanics, words, etc.
    Did you write the statement yourself or is this an exercise taken from a book? If it's an exercise from a book, I would leave the instruction as it is. Students need to get used to the wording of exercise instructions. If, however, you constructed the statement yourself, then I must say the following.

    With all due respect, you are the teacher. Only you know whether your students will understand it or not. You see them at each and every class. You know their level. You will have written such directions for them before. Did they understand the last one? The one before that? When you were a learner at their level, would you have understood the instruction?

  3. #3
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Philippines
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    43,297
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Direction of an Item of an Exam

    How about wording instead of words?
    What exactly do you mean by mechanics and are they familiar with the term?

  4. #4
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    15,640
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Direction of an Item of an Exam

    Also, I wonder whether the heading 'Direction' adds anything. After the words 'Please rewrite...' it's possible to work out what it means; its only function seems to me to be to mislead. If you need a heading, I would use 'Instructions'.

    b

  5. #5
    JohnParis's Avatar
    JohnParis is offline Senior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Retired Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • France
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    774
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Direction of an Item of an Exam

    Instructions: Rewrite the following letter.
    Make certain that the meaning is clear, and that you have used proper grammar, wording and usage.



    Last edited by JohnParis; 11-Nov-2011 at 13:00. Reason: spacing

  6. #6
    ziawj2 is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    231
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Direction of an Item of an Exam

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    Did you write the statement yourself or is this an exercise taken from a book? If it's an exercise from a book, I would leave the instruction as it is. Students need to get used to the wording of exercise instructions. If, however, you constructed the statement yourself, then I must say the following.

    With all due respect, you are the teacher. Only you know whether your students will understand it or not. You see them at each and every class. You know their level. You will have written such directions for them before. Did they understand the last one? The one before that? When you were a learner at their level, would you have understood the instruction?
    Thank you for your pertinent comments! I will pay attention to "my students' level" in my class later.

  7. #7
    ziawj2 is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    231
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Direction of an Item of an Exam

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    Also, I wonder whether the heading 'Direction' adds anything. After the words 'Please rewrite...' it's possible to work out what it means; its only function seems to me to be to mislead. If you need a heading, I would use 'Instructions'.

    b
    Could you explain more clearly, what is the difference between "direction" and "instruction"? In many textbooks or exam papers, the examiner uses the former word.

  8. #8
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Philippines
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    43,297
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Direction of an Item of an Exam

    I would use Instructions for students. I have seen Direction used for the invigilator when they have to give an instruction to the students- something for them to read out- for instance, the text to read before playing a recording, etc.

  9. #9
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    15,640
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Direction of an Item of an Exam

    I've chiefly (only?) seen the plural, often in the context of 'Directions for use' (instructions for using things) or on medicaments. Of course, in Asian English the collocations are probably different. If Chinese students are accustomed to seeing the wotd 'Direction' I wouldn't interfere; personally, though, I would find it confusing (not seriously confusing, but odd-looking).

    b

    PS another common collocation: 'stage directions' (such as 'Turns upstage' or - one of my favourites - 'Exit, pursued by a bear')
    Last edited by BobK; 13-Nov-2011 at 11:21. Reason: Added PS

Similar Threads

  1. by item or by items
    By idiotmike in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 24-Sep-2010, 07:12
  2. hopeless at direction? helpless at direction?
    By flytothesky in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 20-Dec-2008, 08:53
  3. pick only one item
    By kiranlegend in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 24-Jul-2008, 13:30
  4. lead item
    By ionutzavram in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 26-Feb-2008, 19:05
  5. Item in fashion
    By NewHope in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 29-Oct-2004, 02:07

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •